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A Christmas Prelude December 23, 2020

Posted by ajoyfulpractice in Bhakti, Christmas, Faith, Healing Stories, Hope, Music, Peace, Poetry, Religion, Wisdom, Writing, Yoga.
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[“Peace and good will!” to all. “Happy Holidays!” and “Merry Christmas!” to all who are celebrating.]

“Why me, I’m just a simple man of trade
Why Him with all the rulers in the world
Why here inside this stable filled with hay
Why her, she’s just an ordinary girl
Now I’m not one to second guess
What angels have to say
But this is such a strange way to save the

– quoted from the song “What a Strange Way to Save the World” by 4Him

Almost everyone has a favorite Christmas carol – even if they don’t celebrate Christmas! And the carols not only tell the story of Christmas, they are a great way to tell the story. For a little over a decade, I have used a variation of today’s playlist to do just that: tell the story of Christmas. Sometimes, Christmastide overlaps Chanukah and the playlist expands accordingly. It’s not that hard, really. After all, they are both celebrations of light that focus us on the 25th.

This year’s variation, as it appears on YouTube and Spotify, is a little different. There’s no Garth, but my favorite Garth “carol” does appear in a surprisingly endearing format – and delivered by someone dearly loved. Both formats include an a cappella version of “The Little Drummer Boy” (which holds a special place in my heart), but they are different versions. Another variation on a theme: the two different versions of “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing!” The one on YouTube includes an introduction to a live performance by a choir in London (and concludes with a prayer). The one on Spotify is the one people usually hear in my classes just before we start the practice.

Which brings me to another change: the beginning of the playlist. Just as so many set the tone this time of year by playing holiday music, I usually have two or three tracks at the beginning of the playlist that are not actually intended for the practice. They are simply to establish a feeling of reverence and celebration consistent with the time. The version of “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing!” (by Carola) that I typically use is amazing and makes every space feel a little like a cathedral. But, since there is no way to really time things out the way I normally would, you can enjoy the music after the practice.

“Mary nodded
Pa rum pum pum pum
The ox and lamb kept time
Pa rum pum pum pum

I played my drum for him
Pa rum pum pum pum
I played my best for him
Pa rum pum pum pum,
Rum pum pum pum,
Rum pum pum pum

Then he smiled at me
Pa rum pum pum pum
Me and my drum”

– quoted from the song “The Little Drummer Boy”

Please join me today (Wednesday, December 23rd) at 4:30 PM or 7:15 PM for a yoga practice on Zoom. Use the link from the “Class Schedules” calendar if you run into any problems checking into the class. You will need to register for the 7:15 PM class if you have not already done so. Give yourself extra time to log in if you have not upgraded to Zoom 5.0. You can request an audio recording of this practice via a comment below or by emailing myra (at) ajoyfulpractice.com.

Wednesday’s playlist is available on YouTube and Spotify.

In the spirit of generosity (“dana”), the Zoom classes, recordings, and blog posts are freely given and freely received. If you are able to support these teachings, please do so as your heart moves you. (NOTE: You can donate even if you are “attending” a practice that is not designated as a “Common Ground Meditation Center” practice, or you can purchase class(es). Donations are tax deductible; class purchases are not necessarily deductible.)

CHECK OUT THE CALENDAR! The First Friday Night Special in 2021 is on January 1st. You can kick off New Year’s Day 2 ways: with the very active practice of 108 Sun Salutations at 10:00 AM or with the very “chill” practice of a Yin+Meditation practice beginning at 5:00 PM. All times are Central Standard. Details are posted on the “Class Schedules” calendar.



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