People of our time are losing the power of celebration. Instead of celebrating we seek to be amused or entertained. Celebration is an active state, an act of expressing reverence or appreciation…Celebration is a confrontation, giving attention to the transcendent meaning of one’s actions.
~ Abraham Joshua Heschel ~
For many, this time of year is a time of celebration—for graduations, weddings, and family reunions.
But what is a celebration? The English Oxford Living dictionary says that to celebrate is to “Acknowledge (a significant or happy day or event) with a social gathering or enjoyable activity.” Or, to “Honour or praise publicly.” And a celebration, of course, is the occasion where you celebrate.
I like what Heschel says, that celebration is an active state. And the theme card from a recent Monday Tarot Message from the Muse, the 3 of Cups, exemplifies this idea.
I love this card from Ciro Marchetti’s Legacy of the Divine Tarot because of the active energy in it, so much movement. I can hear the water, the music, even laughter.
Summer celebrations acknowledge accomplishment, achievement, commitment and connection, of education, love, and family. These celebrations are so ingrained in our culture that even pre-school children “graduate” into kindergarten.
Yet we often forget to take time to celebrate—and acknowledge—other accomplishments, commitments and connections that are more personal and therefore, often feel less significant.
Especially those related to our creativity.
Celebration is relegated to more formal occasions, when we have implied permission to celebrate at events like gallery openings or book launches or premieres.
The 3 of Cups encourages you to find other occasions to celebrate your creativity. Perhaps for finishing a painting, meeting a word count goal, or composing the first minutes of a score. Hard work and commitment are required to do any of those. Why not celebrate?
Or, maybe the better question is why should you celebrate?
• Because acknowledging what you’ve accomplished, celebrating achievement gives you the motivation to do more, to keep going as you graduate from one stage of work to the next.
• Because celebration is like the pause between notes, the space between words. Celebration allows you time to recharge your creative batteries and to change your energy from doing to being.
• Because as Herschel says, celebration is a giving of attention to the transcendent meaning of one’s actions. When you share that celebration with others, it helps remind them and you about the purpose of your life and work, and the power of relationships.
The celebrations can be as simple as a shared glass of bubbly or as big as a party with all the trimmings. However and with whomever you like to celebrate, look for occasions to do so. Don’t wait for permission or the formal affair.
Do as the Three Dog Night urge you to do, “Celebrate. Celebrate. Dance to the music.”