Note: This is a religious post.
I often go for walks on the beach, and one of the loveliest things I see is seaweed roots clinging onto rocks.
And as life often parodies Nature, I thought about this yesterday evening when I went to church on Maundy Thursday. I had just returned from a couple of days in hectic Bangkok, where life is fast and furious. And surprisingly, I enjoyed the change very much.
I was so glad to return to this small simple church in the middle of the island where I live and see all the familiar faces. It’s like my little rock.
I think it is so important for us all, especially children, to have a rock. It doesn’t necessarily have to be church or mosque or any religious establishment, but perhaps a grandparent’s home, a place to return to to feel safe and to reflect.
As parents, we often want to raise successful kids who will go far in life, to be remarkable and achieve great things. But what about the unseen components, the foundation, the roots, the heart?
I read an article today in the British Medical Journal about students interviewing for places in medical schools (which are like gold dust).
The authors of this article wrote, “Instead of your- or my– ability to trample the competition, we really need to explore what makes you, and me, decidedly average.”
Yes, everyone wants to fly high (and we have the same ambition for our children), but what about our ordinariness – or unremarkableness, as the authors say – where most of life is lived? Do we take care of that?
The authors point out that high flyers become ordinary people when they get off their professional stage and go home to their spouses and their children. Do we teach our children how to be happy and contented in this environment?
And therein lays the difference between Easter and Christmas, I think. Unlike Christmas, Easter is more about reflection and less about celebration. There are no presents or sparkling decorations, just eggs maybe. It’s in the first three months of the year, a nondescript time in the calendar. In March, it’s a pause, a break, to establish those bonds with our rocks that stops us from going adrift.
Just as we have been observing Lent, not out of any religious zeal, but rather, to bring some mindfulness into howe we live our lives. Conversation between my 17-year-old and I this morning:
Here’s wishing you Good Friday.