I was wondering this morning whether I could make each moment of my life a type of ceremony. I got to thinking about this as I was having lunch in my apartment – at my little table with a white tablecloth, a small vase of flowers, and cloth napkins. I ate very slowly, taking delight in each bite, appreciating the look of the carefully arranged table and the summery view out the window. I was alone, and it was the simplest of meals, but it still felt like a formal occasion, like a ceremony of sorts. It somehow felt special – which is the way all the moments in my life should feel, because each moment is special. Every moment is a brand new experience, a unique and distinctive occurrence which the Universe has been preparing for some fifteen billion years. There’s never been anything quite like this moment, and there never will be again. In that sense, what I’m doing at any given moment is as special, as singular, as extraordinary, as sacred, if you will, as the most formal of church services. Doesn’t it make perfect sense, then, to attend each moment the way I might attend the most formal of ceremonies? If I walk and talk in a church in a careful and attentive manner, shouldn’t I perform each act in my life in the same way? Shouldn’t I reach down to pick up the napkin with care and attentiveness? Shouldn’t I reach out for a peach slice with utter awareness?
Ena Joyce (b.1926)