Posted on 31st Oct 2010
The English word ‘Celebration’ comes from the Latin ‘celebrare’ which means to honour. With the festivals of Eid and Diwali upon us and Hannukah and Christmas soon to come, it is a time when all traditions around the world celebrate and honour their respective commitments and faiths.
These festivals serve to remind and re-awaken meaning and purpose in our lives. To re-dedicate and renew; to be reminded of our history and ancestry. It’s a time for sharing; to be with family and friends; and a time to fill not only the empty stomachs, but to ignite hope in empty hearts and spirits.
Though the purpose of the celebration will differ according to our faith, there are common values that we all share. We remember and give thanks for the sacrifices that have been made for us, we come together to celebrate family, friendship and kinship with those who are less fortunate. It is a time of joy, happiness and sharing. We give presents to remind each other of the divine gifts of inner wealth that we already possess: Even our habit of wearing new and beautiful clothes is a subtle recognition that the One Above is reminding us to ‘dress up’ in our true adornments – those of values, virtues, good thoughts and righteous actions.
When we remember the real reasons for our celebrations, it becomes easy to ‘honour’ ourselves and others. It becomes easy to stay in our self-respect and to give regard to others. To not let go of our values, and to keep that feeling of goodwill towards others for all time – not just for a day or two.
Another significant feature of festivals is that of light – whether a light by the doorway (deepak), candles, or the lights on the Christmas tree. It’s symbolic of the re-igniting of the light of the soul that shows us the way to our true selves, and lights the way to Truth. When the soul is ignited in awareness and remembrance of the One who brings light to the world, then each of us can also become a light to help illuminate the way for others. Each one of us can spread our light, and help to dispel the darkness that sadly is so prevalent today in people’s minds and people’s lives.
In today’s world we increasingly celebrate festivals on an external level, possibly with too much food, too much expense, too many presents (and even too much television!) but the real joy does not come from what is outside. It comes from recognition of my inner treasures, my inner wealth. Each time I ‘celebrate’ my true self and my real fortune, I am honouring myself, sharing the joy I feel with others, and awakening the possibility of happiness in them too.
It is only in a state of happiness, and from a place of love, gratitude and appreciation, that we can bring about sincere transformation in ourselves. Try changing habits in a state of sorrow or fear and it is difficult; it becomes a huge effort and it is very hard to sustain. When the soul is healthy and happy then it can move mountains. In reality we should not only rejoice when there is a festival; every day should be a ‘celebration’ of life, a thanksgiving.
It’s time… to celebrate with the joy of knowing that we have already been given all the treasures we need, and the place to find them is within. Celebrate every day with love, compassion, sharing, kindness, truth and happiness. Keep the light of faith and determination fully illuminated and shine your light onto the world!
Share these thoughts! ‘It’s Time…’ is spreading far and wide! Feel free to forward this wisdom, but to avoid any karmic rebound, please acknowledge its source – ‘It’s Time…’ by Aruna Ladva, BK Publications London