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Spiritual Time Management » Blog Archive » Summer Heat

Summer Heat

Spiritual Time Management is built around a concept of time that time is both cyclical and linear. As we cycle through the course of a year, different periods of time have different spiritual energies. Springtime, for example, is a time of renewal. Summer, with its long hot days, is a period of tremendous spiritual energy; but that energy has both positive and negative potential. The summer can be a period of great spiritual growth, but it can also be a time of faltering and decline. And, so on, throughout the year. Religions mark holidays to take advantage of these shifts in spiritual energy.

In a larger sense, as a result of this dynamic, we see that history repeats itself. Therefore, the wise person will keep their eye on history in order to learn and grow from past mistakes. This, though, is only possible, because time is also linear. We are not condemned to repeat the mistakes of our past. We can grow and innovate. We have the capacity to choose to expand forward into the future to something greater; or, we can make choices restricting who we are.

Another cycle that exists is the weekly cycle. This period is not set by reference to any astrological phenomenon but is kept simply by counting. The last day of this cycle is the Sabbath, which we call holy.

Holiness refers to something which is special and unique, set aside and distinguished. Those who postulate the existence of a G-d (or Higher Power) would say that G-d is most holy, because G-d is that which is most utterly unique. In Hebrew, the word for marriage, kiddushin, is synonymous with the word holy (kadosh), because through a marriage two people make themselves holy to one another by segregating themselves from all others and dedicating themselves to each other. In the Bible, the Sabbath is called holy, because G-d sets it aside. As the first thing given this status, the Sabbath is understood to be the source of all holiness in the world. Its holiness does not remain restricted. Rather, by demarking one point in time as completely holy, G-d creates the capacity for holiness to defuse outward to the rest of the week – just as the holiness of marriage expands into a family, into community, and so on.

As a point in time, the Sabbath marks both the end and beginning of a cycle. More than a simple day of rest, the Sabbath is the day when we gather, and revel, in all that we achieved in the prior six days. The day renews our souls, enabling us to take advantage of all that we have become and bring that forward to a greater self in the next six days. In our private lives, our “day of rest” then becomes the fulcrum of our growth.

As reflections of the Divine, we too have the power to designate an object, a person, or a time as holy by separating it and valuing it. Spiritually, by doing so, we are not simply playing games; we are creating metaphysical changes in reality. We uplift the spiritual nature of a thing and cause the Divine presence to manifest more strongly in it and, by extension, in the rest of the world.

The approach of summer brings us to another transition point, the dividing line between spring and summer. Historically, this season is the time of harvest. Thus, it is an appropriate point to stop for reflection, to gather in the best of who we are and cultivate those seeds for our future. To do this, now is the time to ask ourselves, are we living the life of holiness and meaning that we want, or not?

If we see that we have room to grow, a key lesson can be learned from a tradition about one of the questions the Heavenly Tribunal will inquire of us when we pass from this world. We will be asked: “Did you set aside fixed times for study of spiritual matters?” By “setting” fixed, impenetrable, times for working on our spiritual growth, we state emphatically that having a life of meaning is our priority. That is our identity. We want holiness out of life. It may be that we are required to engage in some other life function at the moment; but by fixing times, we express our true priorities. In this respect, whether a little or a lot (a fixed hour each day or each week), the amount of time that one commits is secondary. Each person must act according to their ability and the demands on their time. The primary issue is commitment. By committing time to your own growth, like the holiness of the Sabbath, the holiness of those moments will defuse outward and envelop the rest of your life.

As for you, to what have you committed your time?

If your choice is a life of meaning, as the summer with its latent potential approaches, now is the time to express that. Just as you can make an object holy, so too you can make your life holy – by making a commitment to yourself and by setting aside some of your time in the coming year. Take a step today. Make yourself holy.

This entry was posted on Friday, May 25th, 2012 at 1:03 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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