Some among us literally suffocate from too much stuff, too many distractions, overload on noise, ceaseless activity. We become overwhelmed, distraught, yes, suffocated! Why do we consume so much, buy so much, go so much? Where is our soul? Huge attractive orange storage buildings await our “extra” knick-knacks, furniture, bicycles, toys that we may need—we tell ourselves—sometime in the future. We don’t know how to live simply, to seek peace and pursue it, as St. Benedict advises us. “We’ll give it away tomorrow,” we say to ourselves, while turning another calendar year and storing yet another box in our rented storage space! Being 75, 85, 95 doesn’t change our perceived “need” nor the possibility of finding peace, sanity and the joy of breathing, of appreciating what is simple, beautiful and what is truly needed—another person, God, ourselves, what is right next to us and within us!
by Renée Domeier, OSB