Thursday, December 1, 2005

1st of December

I'd be the first to admit that for the very first time in a long time, this is the first December where I haven't bought any gift yet. Nor do I feel the urgency to go out and shop. It's a lean year alright but that doesn't mean I've turned into a scrooge. It's just that i think the hard(er) times make me realize that there's more to celebrating Christmas than just fancy gifts, shiny trimmings, and the likes. This year, I travelled around the country so much more than in recent years and I've seen my share of a lot of our countrymen who deserve our attention, perhaps a bit of the extras we have in life lalo na at this time of the year. If not our material gifts, perhaps our time. It's a time to reflect.

To borrow the advent reflections of my friend, B2:

• Awareness - Are our senses dulled by our own wishes and desires? Or are they heightened by taking the blinders off our eyes? Like do  I have a reason to fret about not having a 5th generation iPod when remembering my Gen. Nakar trip, I met people who've lost their loved ones and a bit of themselves?

• Intimacy - Do we speak more than we're willing to listen? How deep are we willing to know that helper who cleans our desk day in and day out?  Or that messenger who stoically brings our letters and what-have-you's every single working day?

• Acceptance - Are we really willing to let go of past grievances? Of things we cannot control? Of our own limitations and that of others?

• Appreciation - How often do we say "thank you" for big and small graces? Or "I love you" to people we really care about?

Speaking of lean Decembers, I guess it can also be a matter of perspective. I'd rather have it as a "win" December. because in the midst of hardships, the real treat is in finding something to be happy about. I  know that the fortune-tellers and naysayers are predicting more pessimistic times ahead. but one thing I've re-learned is knowing the power of words. so, out with the negatives and on with the positives. (Photo: Backlit ceiling of Greenbelt Chapel, an enduring masterpiece by Ramon Orlina)


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