Sacred Time

In the book Sacred Time and the Search for Meaning, author Gary Eberle writes, “Sacred time is what we experience when we step outside the quick flow of life and luxuriate, as it were, in a realm where there is enough of everything, where we are not trying to fill a void in ourselves or the world, where we exist for a moment at both the deepest and the loftiest levels of our existence and participate in the eternal life of all that is.”

A couple of words from his definition leap out at me: luxuriate and participate. It seems to me that what troubles so many of my fellow travelers through time is the patent unwillingness to “step outside the quick flow of life” in order to luxuriate in the languid experience of living. Notice that I didn’t say it is an inability to slow down one’s pace, but an unwillingness to do so, that hinders people from enjoying life by participating actively in it.

I am reminded of a story I heard about a businessman who encountered a fisherman plying his trade and subsequently suggested a strategy for growing his fledgling enterprise. The ambitious plan called for the fisherman to gradually expand his operation until he was ultimately able to slow down, fish at his own pace and spend time at home with his family. The irony, of course, was that the fisherman was already enjoying that lifestyle without the businessman’s plan.

As far as I can ascertain, that is the way many people strive to live their lives: ever chasing after the illusion of success, yet failing to realize the simple pleasures of the life they possess. And the sad fact of the matter is that the life most dream of is much closer than they realize. As the saying goes, it doesn’t pay to climb the ladder of success, only to learn that it leans against the wrong house.

Easier said than done, some may say, but I beg to differ. It is all a matter of how badly one wants a simpler, more meaningful life. People live the life of their dreams all the time. And it simply involves making conscientious decisions on a daily basis that move one closer to the preferred destination. Sacred time is within reach of us all, if we’ll only let go of what limits us.