When people hear the word ritual they often think of druids, pagans or witches. Or perhaps they think of catholics and god-fearing church goers. Either way, the idea of ritual becomes depersonalized and set with religious overtones. Do not get me wrong, there is a necessary place for these types of experiences, but not all rituals need to be interpreted in this way.
I like to think of ritual with less intensity, so I simply define a ritual as "a routine way of honoring what is important in my life". This idea of ritual allows me to connect deeply through repeated patterns set with intention and mindfulness.
Let me give you an example. Like most people, I like to wake up and have a cup of my favorite hot beverage (which happens to be ground, roasted cocoa beans with cream and honey). I could choose to go through the news of the day, think about what I want to accomplish, plan my "to-do" list, etc. However, I prefer to experience going inward, and focusing on the quality of day I would like to manifest.
I find that when I spend quiet time in the morning listening, I am able to sense how I want my day to "feel". By knowing this, I can then set intentions, and throughout the day, become more aware of whether my actions are in alignment with the essence I want to experience for that day. When I am this mindful, I tend to have much more fulfilling days; days that are richer and filled with synchronicity.
There is something magical about taking time to sit silently in meditation or contemplative prayer. Doing so opens space for the coming day. Journaling reveals further insights, and allows me to clear my brain of unnecessary crap that would otherwise clutter my thinking. In this way I create space for more insights and information to "download" throughout the day. I also like to select a daily SoulCollage® card to inform the "character" or "quality" of my day.
I do these types of thing every morning, usually for about 45 minutes. The specifics may change, but the objective remains - Intentionally set the tenor of my day using ritual, and recognizing the sacred in every moment of my life. I have a choice to be present, or not.
Do you have a morning ritual that colors the quality of your day?
- I am grateful for making time to meditate.
- I am grateful for silence and the wisdom inherent in it.
- I am grateful for Sister Chris Machado of the Holy Spirit Retreat Center for providing amazing opportunities to go into the silence. http://hsrcenter.com
- I am grateful for the moments throughout the day in which I remember my morning intentions.
- I am grateful for mirroring friends who know the importance of going inward.