Friday, September 3, 2010

Do you have a moment of peace in the weekend?

When I grew up we were called out of bed early on sundays because we had to go to church.
I was raised in a roman catholic family in a part of town that resembled a village and where the priests were more important that the mayor who lived there too.

I was a member of the church choir because I could sing. As simple as that.
And because I had a nice voice and kept key and could remember the melodies well I also sang solo.

My songs were always planned before the incense filled the church with smoke, as I felt unwell as soon as I breathed it in.
Some chaplains refrained from using incense completely. That meant a lot to me as the most beautiful songs were sung in the second one of the service.

One of them, who worked in china and india and was too old to travel any more burned his own incense after he carefully tried it out. He was a kind guy and told me the incense was used to cure asthmatic people. None believed him but I did.

Sunday mass was supposed to be the most peacefull time in the weekend.
In a way it was that for me, as I forgot everything around me when I was singing.

But I doubt it was for others.
The women on their way home always had a lot to talk about others: "Have you seen..., she has a new coat." etc etc.

When I went to university I visited the university church a couple of times and then gradually moved to buddhism.

Each sunday a group of roman catholic and buddhistic students would meet to share a meal and meditate.
I felt at home there.
None was focussed on outward behaviour and clothes.
None was trying to be better than someone else.

I was accepted as the person I was and took the ways of the buddhists upon me in such an easy way that they seemed to have slumbered inside me for a long time.

When I had my own family and wasn't able to keep in contact with church or buddhistic friends I kept the ways of creating a peaceful weekend with a silent hour for all of us in the afternoon or early evening.

It was very special to us and we've kept it until now.
The hour is still silent, but I wonder if anyone of my family realises where it came from and I think some even don't realise it's there every week.

Now we've chosen to be officially buddhists children respect my silence consciously, whereas before they did it unconsciously.

Do you have a moment of peace in the weekend?
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