Posted by: Dr Churchill | December 4, 2020

Live Today, Gladden your Heart, Be Swift to Love, and thrive in Kindness…

“Life is short and we do not have much time to gladden the hearts of those who make the journey with us, so be swift to love, and make haste to be kind; and the blessing of God, who made us, who loves us, and who travels with us be with you now and forever.”

–Notker,  a 9th century monk of Saint Gall Monastery in Switzerland. 

Indeed this is a good way to start each and every day with this “Memento Mori” much like Marcus Aurelius who had asked his aide -de-camp and the members of his retinue to be reminded each and every day that this day might be his last…

“Life is short and we do not have much time to gladden the hearts of those who make the journey with us, so be swift to love, and make haste to be kind; and the blessing of God, who made us, who loves us, and who travels with us be with you now and forever.”

Yet, we also know how this erudite monk from Switzerland came upon this realization back in his day, and this is a spurious reaction to one of his daily walkabouts in the heights of the Swiss Alps where one day while the fastidious monk Father Notker was walking a high mountain trail in the Alps, he came upon a group of workers constructing a bridge over a deep chasm between cliffs trying to bridge the divide…

Seeing the peril that the stone masons were facing while fashioning this bridge over a drop of certain death, Notker realized an inalienable truth before him: The fact that all of us face the peril of the chasm of death, daily, but without any awareness of it.

Yet for me this week, the sudden death of a friend during her sleep this past Monday, awoke me once again to this frequent reality and to the strong realization, that this day might very well be our last. And that holds true for each and every day of my Life…

And I rejoice in this.

Yet I also know that there are many responses to this realization, probably one for each one of us…

Yet, the one that I find to be particularly faithful is distilled in that blessing from Fr Notker, that we spoke already about but is worth repeating so you can internalize it fully:

“Life is short and we do not have much time to gladden the hearts of those who make the journey with us, so be swift to love, and make haste to be kind; and the blessing of God, who made us, who loves us, and who travels with us be with you now and forever.”

Life is short, my friends and yet in some ways it is extra long too …

And so today, tomorrow, and in the days to come I hope that you will take this “Memento Mori” to heart, because although we do not have all the time in the world, and we do not know when the end will come for each one of us — this mortal coil and its usage will surely be useful to elevate us into enlightenment when the moment arrives.

And that’s as certain as the very fact that each day is followed by night .

Therefore my friends, take comfort because we know now the ways that we can bridge the chasm from the inevitability of death to the life everlasting.

So,

Gladden your hearts, be swift to love, and make haste to be kind.

Peace,

Yours,

Dr Churchill

PS:


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