Our everyday spiritual practice is usually considered as a fairly serious pursuit. The conversations about mindfulness, self-awareness, meditation, silence, stillness and such, tend to invoke a sense of deep inner reflection. There is rarely a notion of humor or lightness in our sometimes intense chats. However, it need not be so.
A few weeks ago, in the chat titled “stillness and silence”, one of our participants, @LoisMarketing came into the chat and commented that she had misread stillness as silliness! A few more tweets later, here we are. Ready to explore the idea of silliness, of play, of humor, of laughter – as a spiritual practice, in a full conversation in #SpiritChat 🙂 In the context of healing, we have all heard the adage that “Laughter is the best medicine”, haven’t we?
Swami Vivekananda has said in one of his lectures that spirituality has very little to do with seriousness. In fact, he says that the more spiritual progress we make, the ‘lighter’ we tend to become internally. When we get rid of the heavy baggage of anger, resentment, desire that controls us, extreme attachment, pain that causes inordinate suffering, and more – it would imply that we would become ‘lighter’ within, wouldn’t we? And then, our lighter being within emerges as a lighter attitude and aptitude without. We tend to smile more, we tend to be more kind, we tend to uplift others more, cheer them up more – for when we are cheerful inside, it spills over and floods the senses of those around us 🙂
In the context of living a healthy life, the phrase good humor used to imply the physical state of health, as also the ‘state of mind’ of a person. If the mind and body are in good humor, can the heart and spirit be that far behind? It is no coincidence that when we read a funny joke, watch a movie full of great comedy that makes us smile from ear to ear or laugh out loud, that our entire being feels is uplifted! Being in good humor seems to awaken something deep within us – a sense of abandon, of exploration, of discovery, of optimism, of the goodness of life and living it. A spirit of good humor attracts all that is good, because very few people or blessings want to be around those who are in bad humor, don’t you think?
It may not be easy for us, surrounded by, and feeling weighed down by, all that is happening in the world, near and far, to retain our good humor. Sometimes, our good humor, persistent as it may be, may be misjudged or misinterpreted as a pollyanna attitude. However, if we acknowledge that Joy is our natural state, our inheritance, our birthright, then a sense of good humor opens the door for us to return to it. There is no other path to truth, to an open heart, to lasting joy, without the help of good humor, is there?
In the context of our Sunday conversations, this Sunday, September 28th 2014, we will have some fun, with a sense of good humor. We will play. We will be silly. We will laugh and make others laugh. I hope you can join us at 9am ET / 1pm UTC / 6:30pm India on twitter in #SpiritChat – and don’t forget to bring your sense of humor. See you then!
Here are some questions contributed by @LoisMarketing for our conversation – we will draw from these – Thanks, Lois! 🙂
1. How does humor play a role in your spiritual life? Or does it? 2. When has a sense of humor helped diffuse a difficult situation in your life? 3. What makes you laugh? How to you 'escape' life's pressures? 4. Everyone has their favorite comedian, movie comedy, classic TV sitcom. Share some of your favorites. 5. Do you perhaps take life a bit too seriously? How can you relax and unwind more? 6. Is humor missing from your life? Or someone else's? How can you rediscover it?