I decided instead, to spend the holidays with myself - to see what I could see. And it has been pleasant, quiet and rewarding.
New Year's Eves have been empty holidays for me, deciding whether to combat the crowds of drunks, or to spend a quiet evening at home waiting for midnight on the TV: most years I have chosen the latter. Tonight, instead of waiting for midnight, I choose to spend my time crystallising the events of the past year and how they have affected my conscious experience of life.
When one looks at a magnificent emerald, one does not imagine all the stages of compression required to produce such beauty. One only looks to the mesmerizing creation of crystallised light within the stone. And so it is with souls.
It matters less where we came from, than who we are now. In a sense, who we are now, is where we came from. Yes, our present incarnations are the essence of what it is to be Irish, Italian, Russian, Arabic, Chinese, African or American (North and south), etc. As people in all their diversity exist in this moment, they are the quintessential exclamation point of history, written and unwritten.
So I speak here as an Irish-American woman in the full presence of my ancestors, both villains and heroes.
2008 is the last year of the American dynasty, the snake has devoured itself with greed by eating itself tail first. All the world will suffer the effects; yet, it is my hope a phoenix will rise for those of us who survive our cannibalism. Hope and despair, a combination not unlike water and oil.
2009 will bring martial law to the USA, a Great depression, a New World banking order, the subversion of human rights, the age of surveillance everywhere, a world not different from the essence '1984'. Christmas of 2009 will barely recognise the 'good ole days' of Xmas 2008. A very great change in just one year.
It may also bring natural disasters of which we are not even aware yet. Fasten your seat belts, this is going to be a bumpy night: for the old and for the young.
Sometimes, I have trouble sleeping; but, instead of counting sheep, I count my blessings. I count them now, for all those who do not have them by fortune or desert:
I so appreciate
- roads to drive upon and a car to drive on them
- shops that have food to buy and money to buy it
- hospitals close by, just in case somethings happens
- neighbours I know who would help me if possible
- the security of going to sleep knowing I will not be bombed or arrested in the night
- the health of my child
- the greenness of the meadows and hills that surround me
- the swans of the lake and the birds in the trees
- the apples of the orchard in autumn
- the magpies that war with my cats
- the deep quiet of country life
- the sound of my heart beating
- the crispness of the stars on a winter night
- the courage of strangers, who tackle the world's injustices with more courage than I have
- the goodwill of strangers greeting me on the streets
- a culture with the wisdom of scarcity and a joy for life
- the Internet and it's universe of learning at my fingertips
- the hand of a familiar love on my back
- memories of times that were so delicious, I wanted to freeze them in my soul
- the spirit left to challenge the big dogs, be it only in text
- my back scratcher handy when my back itches
- second day soup when the flavour has doubled
- to know others who fight for the dignity and compassion of people
- the sweetness of forgiveness
- the salvation of forgiving others
- so much butter on brown bread, it drips from my fingers
- I am afraid I could go on ad nauseum.
There is one word absent from all my political, economical, sociological readings of 2008: compassion. No one has even mentioned it in geo-political strategy at all. The concept of nurturance and the promulgation of the species is completely absent from today's rhetoric.
The elephant in the room is the male desire for war, profit and hegemony. How has this worked so far?
I look to the future in the courage of women, who by nature understand cooperation and community; whose endurance is inexhaustible and whose children will decide tomorrow.
The history of men is simply disgracing: it is difficult to imagine women doing worse.
For 2008, I thank the universe for the blessings I have been able to enjoy: for 2009, I give all my energy to the young goddesses of tomorrow, who must have the courage to lead us forth from the Valley of Death.
I thank all of you who read my blog: together we are stronger. A Hopeful New Year to all whom you love.