Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Celebrating Light

“Think of your well-being like a candle burning brightly inside of you. It is at the core of your being, and when you are feeling quiet and peaceful, your well-being is intact and your

candle is burning with ease.”

--Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff Calendar

Since when did Christmas become so competitive? From stores trying to be the first to put out their holiday decorations and merchandise, (did anyone notice stuff appearing in stores at the beginning of September?) to the array of competitive commercials on TV.

I thought I was being a little oversensitive to the Best Buy ads until I read an article recently in The Washington Post by Hank Stuever who had the same feelings I did. There’s one ad that depicts a woman who has gone out and bought everything at Best Buy that her family wants and waits up for Santa to arrive only to mock him when he shows up. Poor Santa does nothing but give and this is the thanks he gets? And let’s not forget about the Target ads with the crazed lady who hasn’t slept in days and is in “training” for her shopping spree. She’s the one running through Target with a parachute attached to her and doing abdominal crunches on the red stability ball-like objects that are in front of Target Stores.

Personally, I think this woman could use a little yoga!

Even though these ads are funny, and some would even say clever, the holidays are not a competition they are a celebration. Whether we are lighting an advent wreath, a menorah, admiring all the decorative lights or lighting a candle for loved ones no longer with us, the holidays are a celebration of light. Light conveys unity; light opens us up to love;light represents hope and peace; light is an absence of darkness bringing the clarity we crave. Spiritual light is a common thread that all religions have. Just think how peaceful the world would be if we could focus on that common denominator instead of all the differences.

I found a great quote from an article written by Anne Naylor, a motivational speaker and writer, which sums up this concept of light beautifully: The Light is the great connector that finds harmony and union where there was discord and divisiveness. The Light brings healing and peace, where there was disease and discouragement. The Light sees plenty where I might see lack. When you pray,

see Light – because Light sees you.

However you choose to celebrate the holiday season and after all the busyness is done,

take some time to enjoy the glow of lights around you and let your inner candle burn brightly.

Warmly wishing you peace, love, joy, and light!