Fri, Dec 15, 2017 09:27 PM
Wednesday, March 8, 2017 issue
2003-12-24 communities
Mischief & Mayhem
The good in self-centerdness
Mylinda Johnson
Self-centeredness is usually considered a bad thing. When we hear this term, we tend to think of people who are focused solely on serving their own wants and needs and who could not care less about those around them. I beg to differ on this term. Please do not misinterpret me here; focusing on only you is not a good thing when you are focusing on material things - especially at Christmastime. However, centering oneself is always a good thing.

We need to focus on ourselves in order to be better to the people around us. Focusing on oneself has long been a beneficial force of reckoning. For example, Tai Chi is based on the existence of the concept of 'chi', which is a force within us that animates our body.

In order to take full advantage of this force, we must focus within. All over the world, people meditate and work toward being at one with themselves in order to develop their 'chi' in a way that will better enable them to be good and wholesome.

We, who are Christians, use prayer for the same purpose. Some may disagree with me here and say that we use prayer to speak to God, but in speaking to God through prayer,

in asking forgiveness for sins, and in making ourselves right with the Lord, we are indeed centering ourselves and becoming at peace with ourselves. Being at peace with ourselves allows us to focus on the needs of others rather than wasting energy by being hateful and sad.

We all need time to be alone and to focus on breathing. Good air in, bad air out as we focus on letting the good in and pushing the bad out, we are in fact allowing ourselves to become more peaceful. When we are peaceful, those around us are more peaceful. This will allow the peace and love that we feel at Christmastime to continue throughout the year. Inner peace will alleviate any unhappiness in us.

Unhappiness is a disease that eats away at our very existence. It seems that unhappy people tend to spread their unhappiness both intentionally and unintentionally. We do not have to be unhappy! Happiness is a choice. We must choose to be happy in our current circumstances. We cannot depend on others to make us happy, nor can we depend on material possessions to make us happy. Happiness is a state of mind that comes from inner peace. No more can we say, "I will be happy when" but rather, we concede that we are happy now.

We usually all feel the need to give gifts at Christmastime. We feel the need to help others, hold the door for others, and to give a little more of ourselves to others at this time of year. However, this feeling of friendship and love that we feel during Christmas is not something that we need drop on December 26th. I am sure that most American's feel a little more camaraderie this Christmas due to the threat that has been plaguing our country and the battles that we have gone through to keep the world a safer place. This too should be a feeling that we keep within our hearts now and always.

The solidarity that we feel for one another during hard times and Christmastime starts with a self-centered attitude. We must choose to be happy and we must take the time to focus on our inner peace and tranquility in order to maintain the level of humanism that we all show at Christmas. As I said, being self-centered can be a very, very good thing!

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