Ode to Joy – Music to our ears.

Joy – “Why aren’t you dancing with joy at this very moment?” – Valayet Khan

Sometimes the verses of a particular song can hijack my brain, and so it was with

Joy to the World by Three Dog Night

Jeremiah was a bull frog
Was a good friend of mine
I never understood a single word he said
But I helped him a-drink his wine
And he always had some mighty fine wine

Joy to the world
All the boys and girls, now
Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
Joy to you and me

After all, the princess kissed the frog who became a prince – talk about transformation;  and the tadpole morphs into the frog, the chrysalis into the butterfly, and we can transform ourselves into  dream catchers in and through the spirit of growth, change, and development that are essential to life – how joyful is that!  Every evening when I ascend the stairs in our home, I am reminded of a framed needle – stitched saying, “Do not postpone joy.”  Let us appreciate, be grateful of, and always enjoy the moments, opportunities, and people we encounter on a daily basis: “Love life, everything – pale lights, markets medley of green lettuce, red cherries….Incredible! You get excited, you talk to people and people talk to you, you touch and they touch you. All this is magical, like some endless celebration.” – Eugene Ionesco – Learning by Heart.

What does bring you joy?  Joy is a pure, unadulterated, and simple delight in being alive. Joy emerges from feelings of happiness, experiences of pleasure, and an awareness of one’s blessings.  Perhaps it whelms up from a deep satisfaction that we know when we are able to serve others.  Give yourself permission to feel good about helping others.  Mother Teresa of Calcutta, winner of the Nobel Peace prize says, “ One gives most who gives with great joy.”  We are challenged to rejoice and to be exceedingly glad.  The secret is to find joy in another person’s joy.

What would it be like if we began our classes or have piped over the public address system the opportunity to feel in one’s heart the finale of Beethoven’s Symphony, No. 9, in D minor, Op 125, the choral piece based on Schiller’s poem, “Ode to Joy” culminating in a bombastic explosion of voices singing about the unity of all human kind.  We are to jump for joy, as often as possible.  Life is not meant to be endured but enjoyed. “The Joy that isn’t shared, I have heard, dies young.”  Ann Sexton

As advocates of “Dream…Learn It. Live It,” we can find energy in and through our daily activities, for where else can we find an abundance of it. Look within to discover the fullness of joy.  Even the sight of another person smiling can be contagious. Research demonstrates that bringing a smile to one’s face can stimulate positive, physiological benefits of a smile and thus make us feel better.  Let us strive to create an atmosphere of joy in our academic community by “doing all the good we can by all the means we can, in all the ways we can, in all the places we can, at all the times we can, to all the people we can, as long as ever we can.”  John Wesley –Illuminations.

I think it is time to sink my teeth into an Almond Joy!

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