Thursday, December 17, 2009
There is one Christmas Carol that has always baffled me. What in the world do leaping Lords, French hens, swimming swans, and especially the partridge that won't come out of the pear tree have to do with Christmas?
This week, I found out.
From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in England were not permitted to practice their faith openly. Someone during that era wrote this carol as a catechism song for young Catholics. It has two levels of meaning: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to members of their church. Each element in the carol has a code word for a religious reality which the children could remember.
•The partridge in a pear tree was Jesus Christ.
•Two turtle doves were the Old and New Testaments.
•Three French hens stood for faith, hope and love.
•The four calling birds were the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.
•The five golden rings recalled the Torah or Law, the first five books of the Old Testament.
•The six geese a-laying stood for the six days of creation.
•Seven swans a-swimming represented the sevenfold gifts of the Holy Spirit--Prophesy, Serving, Teaching, Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership, and Mercy.
•The eight maids a-milking were the eight beatitudes.
•Nine ladies dancing were the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit--Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self Control.
•The ten lords a-leaping were the Ten Commandments.
•The eleven pipers piping stood for the eleven faithful disciples.
•The twelve drummers drumming symbolized the twelve points of belief in the Apostles' Creed.
So there is your history for today. This knowledge was shared with me and I found it interesting and enlightening and now I know how that strange song became a Christmas Carol...so pass it on if you wish.'
Merry (Twelve Days of) Christmas Everyone!
1. Drink plenty of water.
2. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a beggar.
3. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food
that is manufactured in plants..
4. Live with the 3 E's -- Energy, Enthusiasm and Empathy
5. Make time to pray
6. Play more games
7. Read more books than you did in 2009
8. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day
9. Sleep for 7 hours
10. Take a 10-30 minutes walk daily. And while you walk, smile.
11. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all
12. Don't have negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead invest
your energy in the positive present moment.
13. Don't over do. Keep your limits.
14. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
15. Don't waste your precious energy on gossip.
16. Dream more while you are awake
17. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need..
18. Forget issues of the past. Don't remind your partner with His/her mistakes of
the past. That will ruin your present happiness.
19. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone. Don't hate others.
20. Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present.
21. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.
22. Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn. Problems are simply
part of the curriculum that appear and fade away like algebra class
but the lessons you learn will last a lifetime.
23. Smile and laugh more.
24. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree...
25. Call your family often.
26. Each day give something good to others.
27. Forgive everyone for everything..
28. Spend time w/ people over the age of 70 & under the age of 6.
29. Try to make at least three people smile each day.
30. What other people think of you is none of your business.
31. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will.
Stay in touch.
32. Do the right thing!
33. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.
34. GOD heals everything.
35. However good or bad a situation is, it will change..
36. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
37. The best is yet to come..
38. When you awake alive in the morning, thank GOD for it.
39. Your Inner most is always happy. So, be happy.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
I think we can all agree that in the wide world of grammatic correctness, peace is defined as a noun: a person, place, or thing…peace being, of course a “thing.”
What are the things that come most often to the minds of many when they think of peace ? Stillness, calm, absence of conflict.
To me, peace is more than a noun, a thing. Peace is a verb, a word denoting action. Peace is not a thing that just happens, not in the world of reality anyway. And what is that reality? War, competitiveness, turmoil within and without. While some may think this is how the world and people have become, the truth is that history bears testament that the world and people have always been that way.
Therefore, peace is something we create rather than an illusive static thing just sitting somewhere, intact and waiting to be discoverd.
Again, peace has to be made, as is “Let’s make peace.” Peace is a verb.
How To Create More Frequent Moments of Inner Peace
Complete inner peace is seldom a chronic condition. It comes and goes like any other thing of action, moment by moment. But we can certainly strive to create for ourselves more frequent and longer lasting moments of inner peace.
Invite Inner Peace: Create a less chaotic outer environment for yourself, one that will invite and welcome more visits of inner peace. Consider freeing your living space of clutter, excessive noise, and frantic activity.
Make More Time For Peace: Clear your calendar and to-do lists of unnecessary commitments. In place of those commitments, insert sessions of quiet contemplation, prayer or meditation, nature walks, the pursuit of creative endeavors you enjoy, the learning of new things, the exploration of new places.
Refuse To Entertain Unwelcome Interruptions: Turn off your phones, hide the clock nearest you once in a while, put a “do not disturb” sign on your door several times a day, hide out in the car if you have to, but refuse to play host to those many unwelcome daily interruptions that serve no valuable purpose. Also refuse to play host to any guilt you or someone else tries to lay upon you for making inner peace a verb in your life.