20 December 2010

O Holy Night

I like to listen to Christmas music all year long.  It reminds me of my favorite time of the year, and it inspires cheerful and pleasant thoughts and feelings.  It also helps to remind me of probably our most important mission while we're on this planet--focusing on others and their wants and needs, and doing our best to provide for them.  Christmas is the only time of the year that so very many people are focused almost exclusively on making others happy, on doing things and getting things for them, and that's a nice thing to be reminded of.

But anyway, that's not what I feel like writing about at this moment.  I'm listening to "O, Holy Night" right now (Michael Crawford's version--the best I've ever heard), and it just struck me that there's something amiss with the title.  The title implies that the night that Christ was born is the holy night, but I have to take exception to that claim.  Personally, I believe that every night is holy--just as is every day, every morning, every afternoon.  I think that sometimes we don't see every day and every night as holy because we don't treat our days and nights as holy.  We take them for granted, even dislike them or dread them or waste them sometimes, but we surely don't look at them as holy.

This moment is holy.  We're alive, we're sharing this world together, we're part of the whole of humanity right now, and we're truly blessed with many beautiful things, with food to eat and shelter over our heads--how could this moment not be holy?

This night will be holy if we regard it as holy.  That doesn't mean, of course, that we have to go to church tonight or spend three hours reading the Bible.  Rather, it means that we have to accept tonight for what it is--a holy night--appreciate it for what it is, and love this night for what it is.  It's an opportunity to give to others, to share with others, even to take from others who wish to give.  It's a time for reflection and appreciation, and if we can find both of these, then we'll be in good shape.  A holy night demands nothing more or less than our reverence, and when we truly appreciate the opportunities that we have at any given moment, then we can't help but be reverent.

"O holy night"?  That would be tonight, and last night, and tomorrow night.  Holiness comes from our hearts, and we can bring holiness to any moment that we wish, when we bring to it a heart full of reverence, love, and peace.

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