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Sunday, October 14, 2007

Celebrating Personal Rituals

I hope you have had a great weekend and are ready for another week of of work, sharing and enjoying all that life has to offer.

Here is a piece from Dr. Weil which seems especially relevant at this time of the year. In November we will celebrate Thanksgiving Day, the holiday when many of us will share in celebration for all our blessings -- and for the strength to face our trials as well. In this selection Dr. Weil urges us to focus on making each aspect of our holiday routines especially resonant as we share with family and friends.

Celebrating Personal Rituals

“With the holidays fast approaching, take a little time to reflect on your personal celebratory rituals. What do they mean to you? What would you change or add? Even simple holiday rituals can have deep emotional resonance. Our relationships are intensified as we dine with friends or relatives; our values are reinforced as we make charitable gifts or volunteer our time; our sense of continuity is refreshed by the comforting sameness of the season.

This year, why not create new rituals by reinvigorating old traditions? Bake your great-grandmother's favorite cake; use heirloom linens to set the table. Incorporate new ideas into old routines. For instance, after toasting the New Year, share your personal bests from the past year - and hopes for the new one. You may find that a few twists add just the right amount of tradition.

You may also want to learn more about other celebrations. In the United States, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and New Year's Eve are commonly celebrated. Learning more about the history behind these celebrations can help you to better understand the meaning they hold for others. Think of new ways you can mark these days as special, even if they are not your traditional days of celebrating.”

- Good Morning from Dr. Weil.com, Nov. 8, 2003

Selected Books from Oak Rise Cottage Shelves

For a sweet example of memorable holiday ritual with family, read A Cup of Christmas Tea by Tom Hegg (Waldman House Press, 1982) and its sequel, A Memory of Christmas Tea (1999)

A Christmas Gathering by Pat Ross (Viking Penguin, 1991) gives samplings of vintage Christmas traditions. One way to record your holiday celebrations is with The Victoria and Albert Museum Christmas List Book (Random Century, 1989


the feathered nest said...

I like Dr. Weil. I just recently watched a DVD of a PBS show that he did a while back. Thanks for the book recommendations!


Wanda said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog. I get all happy when I make a new friend!

I love Dr. Weil, too. When I first started reading that article, I was a little sad, thinking since my mother and my in-laws have passed, we don't have any rituals. As I read further, I realized I do! My mamaw's chess pie! No holiday gathering is complete without chess pie. I feel better now and am determined to pick up the slack, step up to the plate and be the keeper of rituals for the family. Doesn't look like anyone else is going to. Hmmm. Better get started cleaning the house now.