Hello everybody. This video is connected to the lesson “Spirituality of rest”.
What can we notice about rest?
We can find that rest is connected essentially with rhythm, that is, whenever we do something, we need some rest. We can consider, for example, our breathing. Even our heart, in its beating, has a tiny moment of rest. So, our life is made this way, because we are humans, so we are structured with rhythms. We can find an attention to these rhythms in the world, of course, in the universe, like the rhythm of seasons, of days. Particularly religions have given attention to this element of our life, so we can find in religion this spirituality of rhythm of life.
Specifically, in the Christian tradition, there is this attention to the week, so, every seven days we have, according to the Old Testament, the day of rest. We can find the story in the creation of the world in seven days.
This recurring of events includes not only days, weeks, seasons, but also celebrations, feasts. In this context we can find celebrations either of religious events, like Easter, or Christmas, or events of the universe, like the starting of the seasons.
Now, there would be a difficulty about this, that is, in this repetition of moments of rest, when we see that, over the years, we carry on by repeating over and over the same events, the same feasts, or the same activities, along the days, weeks, months, we might wonder: where is progress? Where is growth? Is our life, just like a wheel, turning round and round and repeating all the time the same things? About this difficulty, a kind of geometrical solution has been thought, which is the idea of combining the returning, the repetition, with some kind of linear progress. How can we combine these two things? In abstract I said geometrical, mathematical way, the idea is that of the spiral, of, we can say, something like a screw, which is: there is a movement of revolving all the same, but in a spiral we can find a combination, which is, the revolving, at the same time moves towards a direction, so, if you see this revolving, but it can move this way and revolves, but goes in a third direction. So the same way as this is possible in geometry, obviously it is possible in life. It’s not difficult to find this correspondence, this similarity, which is, for example, school: we have different years, different lessons, but, over time, we become more educated and, at the end, we can get a diploma, a PHD, a doctorate. So, it’s visible that it’s possible to combine these two things, repetition and growth through the repetition.
Another note that I would like to add is that a feature of repetition is that it produces in us a feeling of familiarity. This is, maybe we can think one reason, one important reason, why we need or we like some kind of repetition, that is, when I see that things repeat, I feel them more comfortable, more familiar, like I feel at home, because I find, I meet things that I already know. So, I know how to move in that context. This kind of sweetness can be found in all events and we can think also of justice. A connection: in another post of the course I have said that: why do we like, why do we want justice? I think that this is one fundamental reason why we like and we want justice: because justice appears to us like something comfortable: if things are balanced, if what is due is done, what is unjust is avoided or compensated, this creates a sort of familiarity, a sort of comfort, that is very similar to the comfort that we gain from repetition, like thinking: oh, I know this, I feel at home, I like this.
As a conclusion, I would say that our life, of course, needs all of these things. Especially they make possible renewal, growth and, at the same time, it makes it human. This is actually spirituality, that is, we put together the need to grow, to progress, to see some change in our life, but in a human way, so that we are able to find in it also a place for sweetness, for comfort, for familiarity, for a friendship, so that we can say: this nourishes my life, so that, in my spiritual life, I can find something that is like food for my soul, so that I want to cultivate it, I look for it, because it gives me life.
That’s it. These are some notes now about spirituality of rest. As usual, you can have a look at the website Spiritual Study. I invite you to join the discussion forum, so you can express yourself. I would even like to make video meetings or video lessons, a video course. Just let me know, in any way how you can contact me: either by the website or the forum or whatever it is, so that we can build a good spirituality all over the world, across our lives and with our experiences.
See you next time