Post 3/8 in #8weeksofmindfulness
First off, Merry Christmas Eve! I intended to have this up by last night to have you all ready to go for your family functions! Hopefully you will still find this enjoyable or of use.
As with most principles / practices in Buddhism, there is both an emphasis on renunciation as well as cultivation of certain patterns/habits (see previous post for reference).
The primary aspects of Right Speech the Buddha emphasized were as follows: abstinence from false speech, malicious speech, and abstinence from idle chatter.
When we allow ourselves to relinquish speech which is not promoting happiness and harmony among people, we are allowing ourselves to be aware of energy we are putting out, which generally increases positive interactions.
This awareness is imperative, always, but especially this time of year.
It can be difficult to reunite with family members, perhaps estranged, or otherwise distant. It is easy to make sarcastic remarks and to engage in hostile conversation, perhaps out of frustration, due to the high levels of stress associated with the Christmas season.
But I challenge you to take your time, to take a breath, to think before you speak, to ask your self: Is this compassionate? Is this necessary? Is this helpful?
I invite you to see if your interactions with family members can be better than ever this year, if you apply this awareness during your holiday visits. Maybe you will find renewed closeness, perhaps it will just make your holiday more bearable, if you add a little sweetness to your speech!
Give it a whirl and see for yourself ! =)
It may help you more than you know. I wanted to keep this brief, since it is the time to be enjoying with your loved ones.
Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays!