Last week I was walking my dog, Chandi, later in the afternoon than usual. Starting out at 4pm it was already getting dark with snow clouds looming overhead and any daylight quickly fading as we trudged through the adjacent neighborhoods. Rounding the corner to head back home holiday lights began to come to life at each house, bringing some cheer to a walk laden with icy sidewalks and frosty winds that kept me bundled up to the point in which only my eyes were exposed to the cold.
Bedecking houses with strings of lights can be seen in every neighborhood in America throughout the holiday season. I remember as a child piling into the car with my mom and older sister to take a tour of the lights that had been put up at each house and delighting in the warm sparkle of light and holiday décor against the cold juxtaposition of ice and snow. Its something we see every year and though we may enjoy decorating our own homes with holiday lights we don’t give a lot of thought as to why.
For me, on that winter walk last week, I was struck with the thought that each house I passed was lighting my way home. The warm light cast out the quickly setting sun and the darkness that surrounded me and I came to enjoy the fresh air and giggle to myself when I would slip a bit on the icy sidewalks. And that’s when I really realized what this holiday tradition means to me. It’s about being the light.
Each one of us has the potential to shine a light for another. To cast out fear and lift the spirits of others should be the goal of each and every day not just a once in awhile, when I feel like it kind of event. It’s easy to fall into the trap of focusing on our own life’s drama being completely unaware of other’s feelings or perceptions, but when you start to bring light to another it is instantly reflected back to you bringing a cheerful joy to your days that can be tapped into throughout the year, not just the holiday season.
Here are a few ways you can be a light this holiday and all yearlong:
- Forgive someone or maybe yourself. Holding onto anger or blaming others can make your life feel heavy. When you truly forgive someone in your heart you are opening up space to take in the good that life has to offer.
- Be kind. Sometimes the smallest action or kindness can turn an entire day around and open up the possibility for another person to just feel better. You never know how small acts of kindness can affect a person and the people that person comes in contact with.
- Be ready to serve. If you think of every job or interaction with others as a way to serve them and the community of people around you, you are creating unlimited possibilities for the road ahead. Sometimes a person just needs to be heard or seen to know that they are important to the whole of humanity.
So as you click on your holiday lights this evening or admire your Christmas tree let it be a shining symbol of the good in the world and the potential of your light casting out shadows and darkness for others in the New Year ahead. You have the potential to change the world for the better.
Namaste & Peace on Earth from Views from the Podium
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