Thursday, October 18, 2007

"THE GOOD LIFE"

No, this is not another Bath post.

I know you are dissapointed...(I still have one more up my sleeve, before I purge myself of the need to post from that trip...)

No. This is a big one. I think the title says it all. The topic is something I think about everyday: "THE GOOD LIFE"

2007, the search is on- The whole world, body and soul, needs it - needs to feel, experience, taste, a little of: "THE GOOD LIFE."

Some things are a scramble to get a droplet of what it could be - blogs, magazines, ipod music, TV shows.

Some things in my life are more substantial helpings of it - like family time, wholesome food, meal times, a clean house, arts and crafts, gift giving, exercize, afternoons spent with friends, witnessing the joy my son has in seeing a back-hoe digging up the street.

But "THE GOOD LIFE" is still beyond my grasp. Its something other people have. Sometimes I think "soulemama may have it..."

Sometimes I think "THE GOOD LIFE" is innaccessible to me because of where I live. Its ugly. I think to myself: "maybe if I live in Portland, Maine, I can live 'THE GOOD LIFE'." Hmmm, maybe... maybe not.

I've lived enough places on the globe to know that every place has its joys and challenges.

In my cirlces we shun the materialism of plastic, hollywood, lipstick and silicone.

But in my circles we are very attatched to new wool, cock pots, sweet food and good music. (It is a secret, that these things are material too. Vintage lace and fall colours are still oblects of the world.) Family and friends, wonderful though they are, can dissapoint, leave, or cause pain.

"THE GOOD LIFE" is one of abundance and prosperity; in wealth, love, relationships, art and beauty. But, as I am comming to learn, it cannot be found by searching these things out.

The irony of the universe: the reward of your detatchment, is a plentious share, of all that you are detatched from - no?

...or this is a little too theoretical.

Apologies. I guess instead you can readRumi, the Dali Lama, or Baha'u'llah...or many others who write about it much more eloquently than me.

I just have to share. About two weeks ago I felt close to breakdown. I looked at the list of things I had to get done in the following months and realized there is absolutely no possible way to do them with the resources at hand.

Instead of crossing things off my list (which is what I would normally do), I changed my strategy. I made a personal commitment. I decided that I would let all these things fall into the background, and would allow my mind and heart to only focus on one thing. I decided to find a pivot in my daily life, around which all else can rotate. Something which, I believe, will help everything else find their approriate place in my life.

I decided to take 15 minutes in my morning to worship. (something I have done in the past, but had lost a handle on...) I remembered: The soul requires replenishment. I fill it with things I believe will revive it, like family, food, giving, joy, exercize, walks in the sun, good architecture... but, though my soul is uplifted by these things, it is nourished by prayer and thoughtful meditation. I am Baha'i and there is a special prayer in my Faith for this purpose. I am so fortunate to have found how it can help me, and not have it be simply an "obligation".

Two weeks from this commitment I feel different. Not entirely, but things are more manageable. A few things on my list have been already accomplished, others still loom before me. When in doubt I repeat to myself that my new focus will organize these things into their appropriate place, and soon they will then be easily and joyfully accomplished.

Even though I still want to move to another city, and need my favorite blogs for inspiration, I finally feel I have a little more of that ephemoral and distant thing I call "THE GOOD LIFE". And so far, it tastes good.

4 comments:

Juliet said...

nice post angie! Definately need more meditation in my life too!

Anonymous said...

hi angie,
i liked your post too. i have also been thinking about the 'good life' because i feel like i have forgotten all about it recently (meaning like about a year or more!)...and yes, i agree, that meditation and positive affirmations and mantras, and taking time out for these really has helped me in the last month too. instead of wildly treading water in a big ocean without a direction, it's kind of like sitting in a dingy and being able to enjoy the present moment more.
cheers :) Ruthie (look forward to another craft club)

Amy Ewart said...

This post resonated with me, because I think someone living 'the good life' would be aware that they are experiencing such.

But my thought is that the "good life" is within each of us.

Some have the good life, but fail to appreciate, recognize or take advantage of the 'small' things that the good life provides them.

I think that meditating, worshipping, praying and journalling about the things we long for, from our environment to our little desires, to a shorter 'to do' list. If we express gratitude for those things, and share our longing to welcome more of those things in our life, we will move toward them.

At least that is my hope. :-)

In just moving to Calgary, I am looking for that 'view'. That garden, overlooking the river or that pristine view of the mountains. I am learning that you have to be RICH to do that. And that, we are not.

So, I will have to be content with what I have, until I can create that environment for myself.

Glad to hear you you are accomplishing, and finding more of the good life!

-- Amy

Erika Hastings said...

This is what I love so much about blogs - a quick little visit to catch up with your life and here I am, inspired and motivated and in awe of your process. I think what I love so much is that when I read about what other people's struggles are and how they make their way through them, it inevitable resonates with me and helps me to work through my own issues.

http://mudspice.wordpress.com