‘Tis the Season to be Jolly?
I don’t know about you but my plan from now is to stop listening to the news; (I gave up reading papers years ago). We know things are terrible at the moment, in fact I cannot remember times like this ever before.
Now, I am not about to write to you about how dreadful everything is; we all know how things are at present.
This brings me to what I do want to say; as we are all very well aware Christmas is coming; the media are still churning out the old messages about filling up the freezer, snow on Christmas cards, (when is that going to stop?) I guess rain storms aren’t quite so picturesque. There is a lot of pressure on us to spend on everyone; there is also a lot of pressure on us just to survive.
Just a small observation if we didn’t consume at the rate we do half the problems we are experiencing now wouldn’t exist; but the economic behemoth wants feeding.
Consumption, generosity and prudence how to balance the triangle?
I would suggest that charity begins at home; what resources do you have, both financially and energetically? I find it really easy to be mean to myself (especially when it comes to turning the heating on :-)). This isn’t a good starting point; you cannot give from an empty basket. Equally if you find that if you go Xmas shopping and the only person you buy for is yourself, a rethink maybe needed.
How do you feel when you are given any old thing, no thought, no effort a “that will do approach”?
Personally I would rather have nothing.
Conversely how do you feel when you receive something that you really want or where you feel that you have been heard? All warm and fuzzy.
But this can be difficult to achieve, so look a bit more laterally, would it be good to cook a meal/cake for someone and spend some time together? Phone them up, solve a problem for them. There are many ways to be generous that don’t involve trips to overcrowded shopping centres.
In these straitened times we need to be creative; checking in with yourself what can I do; how much resource do I have? What can I do comfortably for others? Remember that generosity rebounds, you get back as much as you give, but don’t bankrupt yourself in the process.
Also if we take a broader approach to what we offer at Xmas we may help calm the rampant consumerism that has got us into this mess in the first place. I feel I need a picture of Stan and Ollie here (“that’s another fine mess you’ve got me into”).
I hope you all have a very happy and peaceful Christmas and feel brim full of love and contentment.