Meister Eckart says that if we had no other words for a prayer, “Thank you” would be enough. It seems to me he is correct: despite the perennial human perception that we live in a baffling and negative world, we live in a garden of Eden where there is infinite possibility. Few can see this, and the rest form a sick support group where they agree that failure is inevitable and commiserate on their destiny.
However, for those with functional minds, life remains a place of infinite opportunity and potential. Anything can be done here, and we are limited only by our own dysfunction. This scares us, because we have no one to blame if we fail, which makes us responsible for our own happiness. This scares people because no one wants to be responsible for their lives in total, even if it is their only path to happiness.
With that in mind, we have no excuses. We have only our future to inherit. We are limited only by ourselves. This means that our triumphs are ours, and our failures as well, and no matter who we blame, the buck stops with us. This seems terrifying until we realize that it means that all of our victories are our own, and that what we achieve is entirely an expression of ourselves.
As we go into Christmas, it is important to remember this fact of our reality: reality is a gift, and it is what we make of it. We can invent ideology and symbolism, as a means of distracting ourselves from life as it is before our eyes, but these are deflections and not reality. This Christmas, let us inherit this gift of a world, and improve ourselves and it together to make a paradise on earth.