Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Desperately Holding onto my Marbles ....

I find this time of the year difficult to cope with.

When all of my senses are assaulted, without mercy, every fibre of my being screams deep inside.

This, probably, places me firmly in the "Bah Humbug" category. But its not that I don't enjoy Christmas, I do try, I just find the materialism and greed overpowering.

Sometimes, I wish I could just swing in with the rest of humanity and just celebrate but a little voice inside keeps nagging away at me "this is not the way its supposed to be".

So, once again, I'll be donning my enigmatic, festive smile, braving the shrines to Mammon and praying for January. The following, well-known piece of writing, will be what I'm mumbling, incessantly, should you happen to see me.


Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.

Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment
it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.

Max Ehrmann, Desiderata, Copyright 1952.


Maddy said...

Freedom of expression and religion - sounds like a good way to go.
Best wishes

This is my calling card or link"Whittereronautism"until blogger comments get themselves sorted out.

Molly said...

Maybe we ARE twins and instead of being born a few minutes after me you hung back in there for six years. Because? Because you have expressed my sentiments exactly. If I'm honest I'd have to say I don't like Christmas. It has strayed too far from the original intent. The greed and the excess I see depresses me.I want it to be about peace on earth, good will to all men, but all I see are frenzied consumers willing to mow down their fellow man in order to get the best bargains.... Bah, humbug. Maybe I should go write a blog myself.....
Thank you for including Desiderata. Good words to remember and determinedly mutter to oneself until Christmas day, which I always love. By then the madness is over, at least until the January sales, and one can relax with family and read and be lazy, and read and do crosswords, and read and do sudokus until the cows come home.....

Lee said...

I enjoy the family get together. But we do that anyway.

The greed, commercialism and religious opportunism (and, in many but not all, religious hypocrisy) galls.

sMC said...

we don't need festivals to celebrate whats in our hearts. If we all followed our hearts more maybe we could lessen the commercialisation. Remember Rise...It is still a beautiful World... hugs birdy

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Beautiful, always.

Why don't they see the irony of turning Christmas shopping into war maneuvers? When did it stop being about love and become an exercise in greed?

"If you can keep your head
when all about you are losing theirs..."

January is already on the horizon. Don't lose heart, Rise.

meggie said...

To me, Christmas is just my family.
I dislike all the other hype, & as you say, the greed & materialism.
I hate seeing stressed out people, the casualties of misery of the season.
Sorry Rise, I am no comfort to you.

Ian Lidster said...

As I wrote in response to another blog, my favorite day of the year is Jan. 2. Then it's over! Life can return to normal. I understand your feelings. And, it's been a long time since I read the Desiderata.

Stomper Girl said...

One day there will be enough of us who realise we all feel the same way and we'll have our own breakaway Christmas. One day.

J Cosmo Newbery said...

If one must mumble, it is one of the better things to mumble.

"Deck the halls with advertising, 'tis the time for merchandising" - Freberg.

Wanderlust Scarlett said...


I don't like the commercialism... so this year I decided to do all home made gifts.

So instead of going out and spending a ton of money on presents to give-
I went out and spent a ton of money on stuff to make presents to give and now I have huge amounts of extra work to do (since I'm not really busy at this time of year anyway...) and there is still the same amount of money gone and trash made and even less time and more stress.

And craft clutter all over my God blessed house in addition to the Christmas clutter.


I learn by experience not forethought.

Gift cards next year.

Merry Christmas!

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

CS said...

I love the Desiderata. And Christmas. I'm one of those awful people who go around singing Christmas songs to myself all month. I don't care for the haste and irritability you see in the stores, but still, I just love the holiday. SO, peace to you - it will be over soon!

fifi said...

I fel the same way. Does everybody?
I always feel such a failure at christmas, and such a sham.

anyway, I shall stuff my face merrily and go douse myself in the sea and thank the stars that I am able to breathe, walk and a hundred other things besides.
You have a wonderful day.

J Cosmo Newbery said...

If you find any marbles, they may be mine.

disa said...