I skipped yoga yesterday, not on purpose but my usual Sunday session just didn’t happen.
Instead, I spent two hours gardening and chatting with a friend. While I dug in the dirt and trimmed away dead foliage she painted an Easter card. Later that day she would color eggs with her dads.
My neighbors burned incense and chanted the Hare Krishna mantra. More neighbors from the temple nearby held a joyous and colorful procession to celebrate Holi. I thought I heard the blast of a far away ram’s horn, too.
After I cleaned up, an outing was in order. I was unsure where to go. I wanted to ride the “Kosher Cannoball” into Skokie. The train line is celebrating its 50th Anniversary this week. Businesses would be shut though-Easter and Passover, etc. Downtown or Boul Mich were out. I’d been twice this week to both.
Wilmette it would be then! I remembered the Baha’i Temple at the lakefront! That would be my place today!
The train arrived at 4th and Linden. I walked the few blocks to the temple. I took a side route and walked down a Wilmette alley. There were probably 30 red-winged blackbirds making a racket nearby. I had to know why. I didn’t find out, but I have to say, the alleys in Wilmette are much different than most if the alleys in Chicago. If they ditched the dumpster and they could lease this space for a wedding!
The temple was its usual stunning and beautiful place. The gardens are in full bloom, the visitor center is finally complete. Although full of people, I felt like I was the only person there. Everyone was happy. It felt so very peaceful, both individually peaceful and socially peaceful. I walked the whole perimeter of the temple. While climbing the steps in the sun, I passed a little boy, maybe two, working his way up the broad, marble steps. His mom patiently encouraged him.
My breathing slowed as I opened the door. My shoulders fell as the light raked through the delicate carved walls. I sat in the back row and felt everything slow as my face relaxed. I was having about the richest spiritual experience of my life. This is a place of peace for everyone. Everything evaporated from my head and heart. Time stopped for me until the little boy walked by me. He took off his hat as his mom picked him up and held him close. The little guy had made it!
I never linger long in these places; I feel like I might get lost. I have to take my spiritual joys in small doses. I left to walk in the sun. I walked North on Sheridan Rd. (yes, the same Sheridan Rd. that runs by my home and in Waukegan!). It’s a rather tony suburb with gorgeous and well-kept homes. Even the condo townhouses are fancy. When visiting a place like this I always want to ask, “Where’s the quirky?” because every place has to have some quirky…
Then I found these cuties! Divine would be thrilled to see them in purple!
I always think of these spring celebrations as our last cosmic reset button. Samhain, Solstice, New Years, Imbolc, Equinox, April Fools Day-they are all good times to restart; but this is the last one on our current calendar. This one was the absolute best one I have ever had.
Joyous New Beginnings to all of you!