Summertime

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Summertime

I respect and admire (I think that we all do) those people who, out of principle and often with very little to gain other than a cessation of further loss of self-respect, fight against the System. When I say “the System”, I’m talking about the nebulous and stronger ‘powers’ seemingly beyond our control. When the small guy wins, in court or otherwise, it can be big news. Justice has prevailed!

I’m a big guy for justice winning out because there seems to be so much injustice in the world and injustice hurts so much when it does occur. (Remember how mom used to answer with the pat line whenever you’d complain that such-and-such was “unfair”: “Life’s unfair”? I always hated that.)

Believing in Karma as I do, that the justices and injustices in the world all eventually balance out, doesn’t really assuage the pain of being victimized. The idea of Karma is just an idea and limited as such. Experiencing a deep understanding of the reality of Karma might bring much peace but I’m not there yet.

Like most people, I try to control that which I have control over and drop the bigger issues that seem beyond my ken.

Which brings me to the topic: Summertime.

We are a little past mid-way through summer, if you count the weeks between June 21st and September 21st, the official start of fall. Here is an area of that we have real control over: appreciating these days to the fullest. Mid-summer is that time of the year that we pine for during the dark days of winter, the rainy days of October. And, as it happens, we’re in the midst, here in southern Quebec, of a glorious summer. Get outside, friends, this is it!

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Turn off the radio and TV for a sec – there’s only bad news there anyway. As for the weather, in the West, they’re covered with water that has nowhere to go, except people’s basements, or there are forest fires threatening homes close by. In the South (anywhere south of Washington, D.C.) well, do you know how humid it is down there? Except for a couple of days this week, the humidity in Montreal has been very acceptable. For farmers, it’s been a great growing season. How many places in the world can claim that?

Even if you’re working – particularly if you’re working – a realization of the awesome character of mid-summer can bring a glow that lasts throughout the office hours. This is it, friends. After this – after September 1st, for example, it’s not quit “it”, it’s “that”.

I never used to appreciate summers that much. I was working too hard. Summers were reserved for working the fields and by July I was usually exhausted. Yes, we did harvest enough vegetables, and more, to feed an army, from July through to October, but the “windows of perception” in my head were not quite clean. I didn’t walk around thinking, “This is mid-summer! Wow, get a load of that!” but instead, “The potatoes are full of potato beetles and there are weeds up to here around the rutabaga and the carrots need thinning.”

So, if we’re going to put up a fight against a powerful adversary, this is a battle worth fighting – against the complacency and sleepiness and lack of mindfulness that keeps us from realizing, with an ecstatic start: This is the middle of summer!

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