What’s so celebratory about the New Year?

Another year-end.

Another New Year.

What’s so celebratory about a date in a paper (or digital) calendar that gets millions of us around the world to cheer, drink, revel and make merry?

Don’t get me wrong: this is not a pessimistic post. This is a post to reflect and share what a single date has come to mean in our lives. As a child, I always felt confused the morning of New Year; it didn’t feel any different than December 31. Since every adult around me (and on television) would be so hyper about the beginning of a New Year, I would imagine in my naive mind that the next morning, the world would be a magical place full of laughter and festivities. But despite the rapturous countdown, when I woke up the next morning, the trees, the sun, the houses, and the people around remained the same, albeit a bit hung-over.

When I grew up, I participated in the revelry; my fondest memories of ushering in a new Gregorian calendar were with my husband with whom I welcomed four noisy New Years in a characteristic loud, countdown fashion with drunken friends. Then we had our first child and New Year eves became a quieter, family affair.

Noise or no noise, I finally made my peace some New Years ago that January 1 is, but a date, a date to physically separate two man-made years. How we choose to look at this date is a personal choice. Apart from the fact that it is a holiday for most of us privileged folks to nurse a hangover from the December 31 partying, a lot of people do wake up early on New Year’s morning and get to work and many, to clean up after us.

It’s a nice idea to have a date to use as a milestone to reflect on what happened in the past 365 (or 366) days, build a new foundation based on the lessons learnt, plan somewhat for the year ahead but stay and work in the present.

For Yoga teaches us that time is but an illusion and it is only the present moment that is the truth. It doesn’t mean you don’t reflect on the past or plan for the future but it has a deeper, philosophical meaning: shut down the noise of the past and the excitement for the future and listen to the soft melody of the present. For if you can “feel” the present, it is only then you can connect with the inner divinity and live your life to the fullest.

May the morning of January 1 be the point in the timeless time when you are able to attain Paramananda, the Supreme Bliss. Wishing you a blissful life.

My love, Anu

Categories: Canadian Identity, Gender Equality, Parenting, Racism, Yoga

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8 replies

  1. I endorse what you say.As a matter of fact there is no difference and the realization is a kind of graduation from fancies to strark realities.

  2. A date to separate two man-made years – great way to look at it, Anu. We do see the cycle of seasons, of course, but to say that one day is the dividing line while all the others are not is a bit fabricated, isn’t it?


    P.S. I had a wonderful guest post at my place yesterday from a woman who reflected on her changing ways of looking at the New Year. I think you might enjoy it.

  3. And beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I was in Cuba over New Years (just got back) and I was having a chat with a waitress at the bar this morning (I was having a coffee, really) and we were chatting about our respective New Years celebrations. I told her that I went to bed at 10 AM as I had been up since 5:30, for a early morning walk on the beach, and then a day long (12 hours) excursion, so I was tired. And then I said, “it’s just another day,, but I know in your country it’s important because it’s a celebration of the revolution”, and she just lit right up.

    • You gave me a chuckle. Happy another day Jared!

      • Haha! It’s true though. For many Cubans (not the 150,000 or so who fled in 1965) it’s a day of real celebration because they believe in the revolution and what Castro and Guevara did. For them, it’s not just another day, but a day to ponder and be with their families. Me, I’m off to work this morning, and New Year’s day I was thinking about all the work that I have to do when I get back. The vagaries of being Western and living the so called Western dream. I guess I too would make a big deal of it if there was some big deal about it here, but there isn’t, really. 😮

  4. Hi Sandhu,

    I know you don’t write many lifestyle posts, but in the spirit of new starts and relaxation, I’d like to invite you to review a service at 4 Angels Beauty Care, located at 1342 Burrard Street at Drake in downtown Vancouver. They will also be holding an exclusive new year party I’d like to invite you to. You can contact me at sandra (at) consciouspr.com. I look forward to hearing from you.

    Sandra Garcia
    President, Conscious PR Inc.

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