Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Rocks in the Bowl

“The secret of happiness is to count your blessings while others are adding up their troubles.” ~ Author unknown

A couple of weeks ago I read an article about a lady who keeps two bowls of river rocks on her fireplace mantel, one filled with white rocks, and one filled with darker rocks. Every time something positive happens in her day, she switches one of the dark rocks with a white one to symbolize the positive occurrence, and each time something bad happens she takes the stone out and puts it back in its original bowl.

Quite intrigued with her idea, I also filled two bowls with rocks – twenty-eight in each container to symbolize a full lunar month – and since I didn’t have any white and dark ones, I used smooth rocks and jagged pebbles. My plan was to see how many of each type I would have in the bowl after one month.

The past two weeks have been uneventful for the most part, without particularly positive or negative events – a limbo of energies – but I still managed to move rocks in response to smaller events that normally would not have caught my attention. Then, as if Universe had finally awakened from slumber and decided it was time to light a little fire under the pot to make the water boil, a string of wonderful things came to pass yesterday, and I happily switched five of the jagged rocks with smooth ones.

Last night, after everyone went to bed, I stood in front of the mantel, and I looked at the two bowls of rocks; after two weeks, even after taking some out, I have successfully switched fifteen rocks! That means that on average, even including the days when nothing particularly good happened or something unpleasant came to pass, I had witnessed at least one positive thing for each day that had passed.

By all means, they weren’t all amazing events, and some of them were in fact small victories, but what seemed important was that I never would have noticed those subtle happy moments if it hadn’t been for the fact that everything else felt ‘stuck’. Just like one doesn’t notice a warm, sunny day during the summer when the warm, sunny days are a dime a dozen, but instantly feels transported to a heavenly place if such a day occurs in the midst of a colder, rainy season, sometimes we need to slow down and feel we are traveling on low gear to notice the smaller blessings.

My mom used to always tell me and my sister that it can’t be Christmas every day, and in a way I am glad it isn’t, for this way I don’t get to bypass the small joys. And the rocks in the bowl are getting smoother with each passing day.