It seems we’re always rushing, rushing. Glancing at our watches or smartphones to know the time. Yet, we complain there aren’t enough hours in the day to do what we have planned. And we tumble into a vortex governed by seconds, minutes and hours while often losing sight of what’s more important. That’s not a great way to live.
Consider this – it’s April 1st, and aside from the folks who’ll waste precious time on silly pranks, we’re almost into spring. Where have the first three months of the year gone? Have you accomplished all of your tasks?
Thank you, Arlene Dickinson – Facebook [I don’t believe it’s a coincidence that Arlene is such a fine writer – shades of Emily.]
Desiderata. Penned in 1927, before the onslaught of technology or appliances and vehicles that talk at you. Life truly was simpler then. Not easier, but with fewer externally induced distractions.
I remember the very first time I read it as a teenager and then rushing out to buy a poster to hang on my bedroom wall. And then, in 1971 when Les Crane put it to music, I would listen to the melody and feel like I was uncovering the very meaning of the universe. (Funny how when we are younger we feel we are discovering everything that is eternal truth for the very first time).
Even as I write this post, the memory of that time in my life comes flooding back. It all seems so recent. But I’m much older and, no doubt, the universe has unfolded as it should since those youthful days.
Likely you have all read or heard it in the past but it’s well worth a read and thoughtful reflection again today.
Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be critical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.
© Max Ehrmann 1927