At a funeral service for one of my wife’s good friends this week, the priest spoke about the rhythm of our lives… and the importance of being aware of this rhythm and being in harmony with it, so that we may grow in inner peace…
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; – Ecclesiastes 3
This reminder made me reflect upon the rhythm of my own life, and my awareness (or lack) of it on a daily basis. So much of our daily actions seem to be done on auto-pilot. Many of our habits and routines serve us well as they lend structure and stability to our life, which are important for good health. However, certain life events can find us examining, questioning the habits that make up a large part of our life’s rhythms. In music, rhythm refers to a “systematic arrangement of muscial sounds according to duration and periodic stress”.
In life, rhythm refers to any repetitive pattern – the morning meditation, the lunch-time walk, the evening tea, and more. A lot of our rhythmic patterns are informed by our current goals in life, and that which we hold important in the forefront of our consciousness. If we are concerned about some aspect of our health, we may be in a a health-awareness rhythm. Education and career, relationships with family, friends and community – all have their own unique influence on our life’s rhythms. And when our rhythm is off, we know that it is time to seek out those who can help us get our groove back!
One person who was a master-tuner for me and my life’s rhythm was my Dad. A man of few words, he spoke loudly through his dedication to his family and his work. Now that I think about it, he was highly aware of the rhythm of his own life. He knew how to honor silence, to love music, to make time to simply relax with family, and not to ask too many questions. I believe I osmosized a lot his traits, but I am still working on the “don’t ask too may questions” part. I didn’t get the chance to ask him how he mastered that – maybe the secret of that rhythm is in one of the many letters he wrote to me. I need to read them again…
If we are fortunate, we have (had) warm, loving, positive associations with our fathers. And these influences have helped set (a large) part of the tone, the rhythm of our lives. But this isn’t always the case, is it? In fact, in many cases, our relationship with our fathers may be characterized by discord, discontent, disrepair and disharmony. What is one to do in such situations?
Let us not forget. “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter…” – maybe it is time we can find a season of healing, of establishing a new rhythm in our heart. We may not be able to do it alone, but with the divine father’s (and mother’s) masterful tuning in our lives, all things are possible…
P.S. Join us as we gather for our weekly conversation in #SpiritChat on twitter – Sunday, June 18th 2017 at 9amET/1pmUTC. The USA observes the “Father’s Day” holiday on this day, and we will do our best to honor those who have played said role in our lives. I will be brewing some special Darjeeling tea and playing some of my Dad’s favorite music from the Punjab. I hope you can join in… Namaste.
Walking in the forest, among familiar terrain, looking at new growth with new eyes, often resets the rhythm of my life… what are some things that help you reset the rhythm of your life?