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Sonia’s Article in the November Diary October 26, 2020

Posted by nicholastufton in The Diary Monthly letter.

Trick or Treat turns Track ‘n Trace

Along with so much, traditional Autumnal events like Halloween, bonfire night and Remembrance Sunday are having to be re-configured to abide by Covid-19 rules. The fact that doubts have been sown over what, if any, Christmas celebrations will be allowed has cast a pall of gloom over the nation’s spirits. We are all at sixes, but not at sevens. Social isolation, unstructured time and financial insecurity can corrode the soul.

Theatres, Pubs and restaurants are teetering on the edge. Entire cinema chains have been closed, due to uneconomic social distancing requirements and deferred releases, the most high-profile being James Bond’s, Die Another Day, whose title could be considered either prophetic, or merely tactless.

All this is producing a collective listlessness, lassitude and heaviness of heart. Solitary medieval monks were prone to it. They named it accidie, though this phenomenon had been recognised for a millennium. The Ancient Greek philosophers, known as the Stoics, recommended as an antidote to set one’s personal troubles into an historical context, thereby gaining a sense of proportion regarding their relative severity.

An attitude of gratitude, rather than grievance, can sooth the soul. Various psychological studies have associated thankfulness, the daily counting of one’s blessings, with an increased sense of well-being, an enhanced immune system, better sleep patterns, and a greater ability to be kind to others. When medical and religious advice coincide, it is worth taking notice.

Jesus urged his followers not to worry about their material needs, offering the perspective that worrying could add neither a day to their life nor an inch to their height. He assured them that God loved them unconditionally and would be with them eternally.

St Paul, in his letter to the Philippians, exhorted, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

Many blessings

Sonia 07747 844265


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