Food for the Soul
Essential food groups for a balanced spiritual diet are: introspection and mindfulness, thankfulness, helpfulness, peacefulness, forgiveness, humility and love- not just in the still of the morning when the world sleeps, but throughout the day.
This morning, I woke up, shot out of bed, and grabbed for my computer. It's the same thing I've been doing ever since the pandemic brought the world to a grinding halt and turned most of our lives upside down. As a content creator, I try to get work out very early in the morning so that I can go about the rest of my day with other tasks. This morning was no different. As I tapped on the keyboard though, and the screen slowly turned on, I had an epiphany. It hit me that I hadn't even paused for a moment to reflect and give thanks for the gifts of life and good health. Chagrined, I turned away from the computer and knelt.
My friends, how do you start your day?
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Beginning with a spirit of thankfulness
It is said that life is a present. And I'm not here to conflate an issue and debate science or religion, I'm simply saying that whatever our beliefs, nurturing a sense of gratitude for the good that we enjoy and leading with that spirit of gratitude every day and in every moment is so important.
If anything these past few years have shown us all, it is that nothing- not time, not health, not even safety and security- is promised. And so, for every blessing that we enjoy, waking up, opening our eyes to a new dawn, we should embrace that blessing with thanks. To do otherwise would be to act like a spoilt child, grabbing gifts, ripping off the wrapping and then rudely complaining that the gift we were given isn't good enough and demanding more. It's hurtful and disrespectful, I'd say, to our benefactor, however we choose to identify that benefactor- God, nature, science. Thankfulness does not demand a definition. Thankfulness just is...
Breaking Your Fast with a Healthy Meal
It is said that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. As such, nutritionists advise healthy food choices to ensure that the body and brain is well nourished.
In the same vein, what is the first meal you feed your soul every morning. Do you, like me, grab for a device? And on that device, what do you tune into? Is it some spiritual text, some soothing music to help your meditations? Or is it some gossip site or some blog that you feel the need to check into to see how much money you earned while you slept? Are you on the clock, are you checking into your job to be sure that there aren't any outstanding tasks?
Whatever it is that you tune into first in the morning is the first food that you feed your soul. And so, my friends, you get to determine- is it healthy?
Many of us go through life starving our souls or feeding on spiritual junk and then not understanding why our mood and energy is unsettled. If you feed your body on junk, you'll get sick. Your body will be prone to any number of non-communicable, diet related illnesses, and because your defences are down as well, you'll also be vulnerable to viruses and other communicable diseases.
Similarly, if we don't nourish our souls, ensuring a good and healthy start to our day, then it's no wonder sometimes that our days are confused, that the connections we make are murky, and that there is a heavy and unsettled, somewhat nauseous sense in our spirit reminiscent of the feeling you would get when you imbibe too much of something that's not good for you. We'd be no good to ourselves and certainly no good to the world around us.
The essential food groups for a balanced physical diet are: carbs, protein, fat, fibre, vitamins, minerals and water.
Similarly, essential food groups for a balanced spiritual diet are: introspection and mindfulness, thankfulness, helpfulness, peacefulness, forgiveness, humility and love- not just in the still of the morning when the world sleeps, but throughout the day.
And so, my friends, I was jolted awake this morning on different levels, but I think my second awakening was more important than the first.
Money is important, yes. But money comes after life and health. I can't make money my god.
A job is important yes, but I must first be thankful for having the faculties and tools to perform that job. I can't make an employer my god.
Real life and digital connections are important, yes, but I can't make the people I network or interact with my gods.
This morning I was gently reminded not to grab the gifts that I've been handed and run off without first saying thanks.
And so, friends, let's chat about it: How did you begin your day?
Every day is a new day, and you’ll never be able to find happiness if you don’t move on.