Thought for the day, Wednesday 27th October

From The Celtic Spirit: Daily Meditations for the Turning Year by Caitlin Matthews,
“Unleashing Joy
‘He who binds to himself a joy
Does a winged life destroy;
But he who kisses the joy as it flies
Lives in eternity’s sunrise.’
William Blake, Eternity
Joy is not a creature of the cupboard; it is wild, free, and profligate, spending itself in one great burst of energy. The ability to enjoy and be part of something is a skill many of us lose; as we disengage from the immediacy of life, we are less able to sink ourselves deeply into things. This distancing of the self often arises from the need to protect ourselves from perceived dangers (physical and emotional). Whatever its cause, this form of separation from life clips the wings of joy very effectively.
Certain people want to restrain the freedom of others; having hushed the ecstatic song of joy in their own lives as a thing too flighty or too dangerous to be allowed, they find it suspect in others as well. At the other extreme are people who, having tasted joy, want it all the time.
Whatever our condition, how do we make access to joy? It can come only when there are three conditions present: a state of lively engagement with life, a receptive and spacious heart, and a respect for other beings than ourselves. If we live in a closed-off bubble, forcing life to happen beyond us, joy cannot enter; but if we play ball with life, catching and throwing back the many experiences that come our way, we begin our true engagement. If we have a daily receptive space where we allow the universe to speak to us, joy will find its way. If we truly believe that the freedom of other beings is as important as our own, if we truly respect that freedom, joy will wing toward us.”

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