The #SpiritChat conversation on Sunday April 7th was about Spontaneity ~ A conversation that was expertly guided by my good friend and veteran #SpiritChat-ter @EmeliaSam. I asked her to take on the helm of the chat as I had hatched some last-minute spring-break plans with my family. So, at very short notice, Emelia agreed to take on the role of chat host, so that the community could gather, engage, discuss and uplift each other.
The transcript for the chat on Spontaneity is available at http://bit.ly/sc-tr-040713 ~ I invite you to read and see the brilliance of the #SpiritChat community in full flow. It was very heartening for me to know that there are leaders in the community willing to serve, spontaneously 🙂 I thank all of you who showed up and engaged, and supported Emelia. Spontaneity brought a lot of smiles to a lot of folks. Thank you again.
As I searched for the discussion topic for our April 14th chat, I decided that it may be interesting to explore the opposite of spontaneity. I am far from being the spontaneous type (although I am getting better at letting myself go :)) – I lean more towards being (overly) thoughtful, deliberate and careful. I like to describe it as “patience”. It may not be the exact opposite of spontaneity, but I believe that it is an equally essential tool to have as part of our spiritual “bag of tricks”.
Some may posit that patience is just an euphemism for procrastination, indecision, laziness. Perhaps. However, we are all familiar with the aphorisms of “haste makes waste” and “good things come to those who wait”. So, as always, there are two sides to the story of patience. Which side do you lean towards? In what circumstances does patience approach procrastination?
Some may posit that patience is an indicator of determination, resolve, and staying power. A virtue that can stand us in good stead in situations where spontaneity may not be the best path to follow. So, how does one decide – should one exercise spontaneity or adopt patience? What informs patience? How do we develop it?
All of us who walk the spiritual path are well aware that, without patience, a little forbearance, progress would be difficult. One may posit that patience is the foundation of faith and prayer. One of my favorite quotes on patience is by the mystic Kabir, born in India in the 1400s. In response to one of his followers, who was questioning why it was taking God so long to answer his prayers, he said:
Patience, dear heart. Will He, who has known every hair on your body since you were in your mother’s womb, forsake you now?
In this age of instant messaging, communication and social media, perhaps patience is a dying virtue. The pressure to respond quickly, for time always seems to be of the essence, puts patience to the test. Yes, in a way, twitter chats like #SpiritChat do not help the matter. All those questions compel us to try and respond, quickly 🙂 So, how do we find the time to develop patience? Or is it a virtue that has been replaced by something else, something better?
So, as usual, we have few questions as we transition from spontaneity to patience. I invite you to join us Sunday April 14th at 9am ET on twitter in #SpiritChat ~ I look forward to learning from all of you.
Be well. Be patient. Watch the universe unfold.
Update: (Abbreviated) Transcripts for the live chat ~ On Spontaneity and Patience ~ bit.ly/sc-tr-041413 ~ share and enjoy – Thank you!
Questions asked during the chat are listed below. I invite you to answer in the comments ~
Ready? Q1. Patience. What image or feeling(s) does the word invoke for you? #SpiritChat Q2. In this "fast paced" world, is patience still a relevant virtue? Why or why not? #SpiritChat Q3. Are there any important life-lessons that IMpatience has taught you? Do share. #SpiritChat Q4. "Patience is the companion of wisdom" -St Augustine. How can we develop more of it? #SpiritChat Q5. Are there life-situations where patience is a liability? How so? #SpiritChat Q6. Patience or Spontaneity. How do we discern which to choose in the moment? #SpiritChat Q7. What is the connection between patience, wellness and healing? #SpiritChat Q8. What two or three things do we need to add to patience to move forward spiritually? #SpiritChat
Some quotes on patience that I uncovered while I was preparing the chat questions ~ sharing with you!
“Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
“I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These are your greatest treasures.” Lao Tzu
“One minute of patience, ten years of peace” – Greek Proverb
“Patience can conquer destiny” – Irish Saying
“Faith is not simply a patience that passively suffers until the storm is past. Rather, it is a spirit that bears things – with resignations, yes, but above all, with blazing, serene hope.” – Corazon Aquino
“Patience and fortitude conquer all things” – Emerson
“He that can have Patience, can have what he will” – Benjamin Franklin
“The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.” – Leo Tolstoy
“Patience is the companion of wisdom.” – St Augustine
“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions” – Rainer Maria Rilke