Sunday, 8 April 2012

end before you begin

Finish each day and be done with it.
You have done what you could.
Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can.
Tomorrow is a new day;
begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.

Ralph Waldo Emerson.

This reminds me never to let the sun go down on my anger - never end the day with an argument unresolved. Like leaving your offering at the altar in order to settle your dispute with your brother first. Like saying an "act of contrition" before taking holy communion!

I wouldn't always forget the absurdities and blunders of the day - but I would hope to forgive myself before the end of the day - or to ask forgiveness.

How do you start the day with too high a spirit as Emerson advises? I've started taking a moment or two to pause on the front door step before setting off down the path to the car. It's moment to see what's around your house, the jackdaws breaking into the eaves where the starlings used to nest, the sparrows fending off a grey squirrel under the roof, or the sparrowhawk gliding over the hedges.

I will always turn along the Bannoch Road and pause here and there along its length, windows down; you can sometimes see the isle of Arran, its snowy peaks through the clouds, and old Kilwinning Abbey tower and ruins. You can hear yellowhammers and whitethroats at the bend where the bridge is. That's where I saw the only jay I've ever seen in the county, last winter. Then you can hit the main roads and drive through north Ayrshire to work, wherever that might be.

That's always a good start!       

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