It was synchronicity at work which caused me to see how the phrase "Lightness of Being" could be used to define the changes I am bringing into my life for the new year. Two seemingly unrelated events- one which involved me joining the Compact and the other which involved me taking part in an exercise at church yesterday, came together to help me understand that in order to simply "be", I need to travel light both physically and emotionally.
In other words, the path to my true self, or "Lightness of Being", is found by getting rid of both my physical material goods (as required in the Compact) and emotional baggage (as the church exercise asked). Excessive possessions and negative emotions (such as sadness, disappointments, and worries) keep me from my inner essence, cluttering my physical space and mind.
As I entered my UU church yesterday, all of the chairs were gathered around the fireplace in which a large fire was roaring. The setting felt intimate and comfortable, a place in which it would be easy to "get real" with myself. After singing the hymn "This Little Light of Mine", we were asked to write down on a sheet of paper the things we wanted to leave behind as the new year began. We each wrote down the things we wanted to shed and then placed our paper into the fire. It felt good to watch my list go up in flames, almost like I was instantly healed of all past concerns and worries. That I would somehow be fresh and new and the energy I once used to manage my hurts would now be redirected toward getting to know the real me better.
This year, as I attempt to toss some of my concerns into the fire and try to remove myself from the work of buying and maintaining stuff, I will find I have time for long walks in nature, or better opportunities to stop and listen to thunderstorms. A moment to watch snow drift slowly toward earth, or an afternoon spent sitting on the beach. This freedom from life's distractions will allow me more time to slow down and think, to meditate and come to understand my true inner self. To strive toward "Lightness of Being"