For a long time now I have been banging away about Ceremony. Quite literally on my drum sometimes too!
What on earth for?
Well, it’s funny you should ask that because I am going to tell you.
It’s for bringing us back to the present. You know that gift we neglect to give ourselves. I am writing a course on Ceremony for which there will be a Free Webinar, during which I will be talking about the merits of actually giving thought to how we pass our time and how we celebrate or not, the little things thought to be too mundane to muster even a blink of an eye in their direction, and yet when we look back can see how some of those moments actually were turning points that we missed.
We missed the opportunity to celebrate our being in them, part of them and how their being part of our lives actually made a wee bit of a difference.
The course is called Walking The Ceremonial Way (Everyday celebrations to mark the times of our lives.) AKA #WTCW. I am so enamoured of it that I wrote an article on LinkedIn Ceremony, Making A Song & Dance
Every so often I love to make a song and dance about something even if it’s only in the kitchen!
It’s possibly something you haven’t noticed yourself lately. This might may be because you’re just too busy. As someone said recently, ‘If you have time to have a melt down you have the time to stay well,’ or something similar, you get what I mean. Think about it.
The bigger picture is about community, but let’s take community to mean ‘family’ just for the sake of this example. A family is a form of community. Living in close proximity for the most part and each having their role within that community; a role which will have been possibly ‘inherited’. Some ‘communities’ will have different ideas of what those roles should be and will arrange their responsibilities differently.
There will be regular celebrating of events that have occurred within the community – birthdays, anniversaries, etc. It is part of the glue that holds them together, so that no matter how far they travel away from their community on certain dates they will know that there is a celebration of _______(insert celebration of choice here). It happens to be the most underated form of mindfulness, in it’s simplest form anyway, in that these dates are ‘kept in mind’ and we know and make space for them holding the community together.
There have been many communities in the world where dates were never and in some cases are still not paid any attention. The months and seasons are their mark of time. Can you imagine no birthdays or anniversaries? They do though mark those months and seasons by the cyclic nature of the earth. They are in flow with the rhythm of the Earth and they don’t seek to go too far into the future of it all, not on the surface anyway.
We know about the Mayans and their ways of prophesising the future and how far into it they could go. They weren’t the only ones. From the earliest of times we have as a species looked to the skies to tell us where we are in time. We have looked at the BIG of it all, realising that we are the small things. We celebrated the BIG – we still do in a manner of speaking, celebrate the ways of yore. We just call it by different names now, and these names will depend upon the belief system you follow, or not as the case may be.
Let’s talk about the ‘small of it all’ for now.
How many times do you remember as a child that you did something you thought worth celebrating? How many times were you disappointed, your expectations dashed before you because others didn’t see it your way, or indeed were just too busy doing other things, adult, responsible things, to notice you and celebrate with you? Some of you reading this will say that your parents, siblings etc. were always supportive of your acheivements and it is THAT that makes the difference to how you went forward in your life. Not the only marker no. The attention that is given to a situation will be the lesson for any child as to how to be in that situation again.
That can become ritual, or indeed habit. ‘It’s just the way it’s always been done.’
When we do go back and I don’t advocate that we go wallowing in our past too often; this is just for the sake of giving a point of reference. To give yourself a little lift and it may sound silly but just go with it for a moment or two, draw or paint something and when you have finished with it – no matter how ‘artistic’ it is or not – and stick it up on your wall or fridge. Put it somewhere that you will see it and let it make you smile. That smile celebrates your effort, your work. A simple thing. People do it all the time for the newest and smallest members of the community, their children. If you didn’t have it done for you then give your inner child a wee boost. Remind your self what it is like to be praised for the simplest of things. Celebrate the small stuff and it will bring you into the present, it can show the power of mindfulness and the power of connection to that place and space in time.
Ye dancin’? Ahm askin’!