Sanctifying A New Year with Joy and Grace

I usher in my 60th birthday with a number of special practices...

On the eve of my birthday, I spend time in a nearby church, praying and setting my intentions, not just for the coming year, but for the remaining days of my life...

I awaken with prayers on my lips - of gratitude - impregnated with my with intentions in the early dawn...

I make haste to make my way to my yoga space, to begin my practice of sanctifying the coming year...

I walk a personal labyrinth, and set my intentions once again in the early morning - which is sunny and brilliant after a grey day of rain...

Ten years ago, on my 50th, I visited the labyrinth at Chartres Cathedral in France, overwhelmed by the energy of centuries of fervent prayers poured over those worn stones, illuminated by the most brilliant and exquisite stained glass...

And while I was not able to visit France this year, and I am grieved by the terrorist attack on the city of Paris, I join in solidarity with all the souls sending prayers from all the corners of the earth...

I move through sixty sun salutations, and am struck by what memories arise in my mind. Though I have done this practice many times before, it has been years since I had physically been able to resume it once again. But this year I am stronger and more fit than I have been in a long time...

Even the memories of difficult years no longer hold me captive - they do not hold any sway over me - I let them arise and run through my mind and disintegrate and I realize I no longer need to revisit the past. This practice divides my life into "B.C." and "A.D.," and from now on I will focus on my remaining years, and my path towards Eternity...

I had shared recently with a dear friend, that from now on my life would be dedicated to not only finding joy and sharing it with others - but to not allowing anyone to take joy away from me as well...

I linger on the last decade of my life - it's memories more recent - but now also relegated to the past. It no longer has any power over me...

I step into my power - I step into a current of joy and grace and give intent that it permeate all aspects of my life...

I spend part of the day with friends - sharing a meal and precious time with one - and a splash of excellent scotch with another...

All shall be well...

I marvel at the gift of an angel from a dear friend - her stance is so reminiscent and evocative of the Warrior 2 pose. My friend reminds me that the extended arm in the front beckons to the future, while the arm in the back harkens to the past, while the stillness we seek is to be found in the middle, inviting us always to live from the Present Moment...

There is no past - and no future - there is only the Present Moment...

I resolve to live there - to spend as much of my time in the Present as is possible...

This is truly the gift of turning sixty...

"We must always change, renew and rejuvenate ourselves; otherwise we harden." 
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe



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