By Jai Kartar Kaur Mohan
The Christmas season can be special, even for someone like me of a non-Christian faith. Gratitude, charity, and interconnectedness are all in the air. There are higher levels of consciousness in action. Don’t compare yourself negatively to others. Rather, take the cue to actively seek the positive, admire the light where it shines and listen for the soft sound of the bell.
If I were to have a collection of keepsakes to proudly put on display, I would collect bells. My associations with bells are positive ones. For me, bells ring in gratitude. Do you remember this line? “Every time a bell rings, an angel gets his wings.” This quote is from It’s a Wonderful Life, the classic 1946 movie starring Jimmy Stewart. The film is all about the human journey of learning to be grateful. Even the title of the film is a declaration of gratitude!
Oh, beautiful bells! My soul listens for jingle bells dashing through the snow, magical flying reindeer making musical landings on rooftops, the doorbell ringing followed by a warm greeting. I recall the tinkling of the chimes I sometimes play in yoga classes to gently awaken restful yogis from their deep relaxation. I recollect the jingling of the cat’s bell, announcing her arrival, and her deep purr as she rubs against me.
In the movie, The Polar Express, a boy receives a special gift, a Christmas bell. Only those who still believe in Santa can hear it. It’s a heart-warming reminder that we cannot experience prosperity if we aren’t grateful.
My teacher, Yogi Bhajan, spoke of “an attitude of gratitude.” He said that gratitude opens the door to prosperity. Someone ungrateful doesn’t recognise the gifts that are being given. If one decides to want for only one thing, he becomes blind to all of the other opportunities that are offered. Those opportunities will never amount to anything because they haven’t been taken. I imagine a bell on prosperity’s door. I’m able to ring it whenever I am grateful. The door is always answered when I come, hand in hand, with my dear friend, Gratitude. Even the one for whom the bell tolls at the close of life can graciously listen as they are being called home. For those left behind, the death knell reminds us to appreciate what we have, so temporarily, here on Earth.
A bell calls us to reverie. It invites us to cherish its dulcet sound for the fleeting moment that it is here. Take pause, notice, appreciate. Be grateful. I don’t have a fascinating ensemble of bells to display. Yet, in my heart, there is a symphony that rings out. A note of that symphony has been recorded every time that I’ve bowed to remember my Creator. Every time my eyes have widened in awe of life’s wonder unfolding around me. Every moment where I’ve paused to revel in gratitude.
In my heart there is a cascade of tinkling sounds that reaches out into Infinity. Listen. It’s in your heart too. Be great and full of love.
Jai Kartar Kaur Mohan is a Kundalini Yoga Teacher & Teacher Trainer