I wanted to start this thread as we are in the midst of the holiday season, which can bring up a mix of feelings for some. And I want to encourage everyone to move toward pleasure, and to find what feels best in how you chose to move through the holidays.
Here is an excerpt from my newest blog post:
"Most importantly is an active "turning toward pleasure" and what feels good and what is enjoyable. Does the experience of the color red, used so often during the holidays, have an enlivening feeling for you? Every year in the month of December many people actively prepare to celebrate Christmas, either as a "secularized" holiday or as a Christian holiday. I'm not on board with big spending to display status or wealth or buying more stuff for the sake of consumption. Instead, I am thinking about the importance of tuning into the body and tuning into the feelings of what makes us as humans enjoy life.
As Epicureans we can choose what feels most pleasurable in this regard as we evaluate our choices and avoidances based on our internal guide of pleasure and pain. The tradition of preparing for Christmas is in a sense a kind of savoring of winter in the lead-up to the Winter Solstice, when we know that the sun will once again begin to move higher and days will begin to lengthen. Actively pursuing the "pleasures of Christmas" is a kind of antidote to the cold, cloudy, rainy or snowy weather and the short days. As Epicureans, we can chose to move through life in pursuit of pleasure year-round."
And also, these questions, for anyone who would like to post responses:
1. How are you enjoying the holidays? (you can share about what you are doing and what you are experiencing)
2. Are you feeling a mix of emotions? (both pleasure and pain? and why might this be?)
3. And any upcoming plans for pleasurable activities?
I will go ahead and say something about myself, I would share that yesterday afternoon I had a very enjoyable experience at a coffeehouse. The sunshine was shining into the room and onto my table, and the place was decorated nicely with white strings of lights. And I felt very content as I had a chocolate chip muffin and was using the internet to read and research.
At times I do feel a mix of emotions, since there are certain areas in my life in which I do not fully have a sense of self-sufficency, as well as being a bit deficient in friendships since I moved to a new city this year.
Upcoming plans: I will be going to a birthday party next week for my great-niece, and I think it will be enjoyable. (Plus a few more events coming up also, which bring me great pleasure as I anticipate them).
-- Savor - share - plan for more --
And please share about yourself and any thoughts in response to this post