I’ve been talking with friends, since the turn into 2019, about daily morning exercises for the new year. Someone mentioned a Buddhist reflection meant to be recited aloud in the first moment you know you are no longer asleep.
A paraphrase of that prayer is: “I am a mortal and therefore in the nature of being temporal. Today might be the day I die. Realizing that that might be so, what can I do this day to make a difference in the world for the good?”
I added that a traditional Jewish reflection, on arising, is, “I am grateful for having consciousness returned to me. The beginning of Wisdom is knowing that I am part of the unfolding of creation, but not in charge of it. May whatever I do be for the collective good. May no beings suffer.”
My friend Sr. Mary Neill, a Roman Catholic nun, told me her favorite morning prayer: “May I be filled with that sense of awe that opens my capacity for loving.”
Awe, I think, is one of the things that keeps the mind open and eager to see and learn more about this extraordinary life and our magical time in it. Appreciation and curiosity are two others. Let’s see how this works! (Among other things, there is a red moon expected later this month and I am looking forward to it.)
Let’s start doing AWE reflections every morning. I’ll try to steadily keep them coming. Let me know that you’ve joined me in this practice.