Who doesn’t like a good lunch followed by a refreshing nap – the much-adored afternoon siesta? If there’s one thing, everyone in the world agrees to – its this!
I recommend adding a ten-minute “pause and reflect” pit stop to the break. Half a working day is behind us, and another is waiting in the wings. As such, it provides a beautiful vantage point to view our world, and then get on with the toils of the day. The alternative is to be swept along by the vagaries of the day, and that can be exhausting!
Yesterday, after a long, long time, I practised Madhyanam. This traditional ritual is done every day thrice – at sunrise, noon and sunset. With an eight-hour (or more!) working day, the noon edition is probably less in vogue – but packaged with the siesta, it is a personal favourite!
When you revisit a practice after a long time, you see it with new eyes. What seemed a checklist of things to perform routinely now emerge as deeply meaningful.
The practice reinforces two unique insights.
First, it teaches us to express gratitude for the opportunity to be here at this moment. After all – your birth is a miracle – here’s Bill Bryson explaining it in his inimitable style:
The second insight is about recognising; we have our infinite potential. We understand we are a work-in-progress as far as realising the potential goes. Our behaviours may not be perfect, but we are determined to improve. And it in this context that Madhyanam gets us to ask for forgiveness for acts, thoughts and emotions that aren’t worthy of us. We end up with a resolve to be better tomorrow – not perfect, but better.
Aren’t these great takeaways – Gratitude and resolve for betterment? And what a lovely practice to do every day. If we do this at midday and follow that up with a sumptuous meal and a relaxing nap – life seems a little more wonderous – would you agree?