Every Sacred Day
Updated: Mar 31, 2021
This week is an especially holy week, with the unusual conjunction of three major world celebrations of Judaism, Christianity, and Hinduism. Passover (Pesach) began on Saturday evening, continuing for eight days. Holy Week began with Sunday’s observance of Palm Sunday, and Holi was on Monday, a colorful celebration that celebrates good's triumph over evil. This, among other particularities of these celebrations, is a large theme of these holy days in confluence for us—that Good triumphs over evil, life over death, freedom wins. These are all sacred themes and trajectories to enter into, to mark, and to celebrate. And every day might be a celebration of these goods, the divine impetus to bring humans into sacred frames.
Humans set things apart, designating days and spaces, people, moments, events as sacred, holy, special. That means that much of life isn’t sacred. What would those bits be? How do we know the difference and who decides?
Historically, we know the patterns. Human life is sacred; animal life is not. Cleanliness is holy, dirt is profane. Church, temple, and sanctuary are; grassy knolls are not.
But what if it were more complicated, more simple? What if we began to search and see the sacred blessing in every single thing? Trees bursting into leaf, wind, smiles, eyes that meet ours on the way. Every meal is a sacred moment, every torn bread or crunched tortilla chip, one date or olive after a fast, a meal with friends, even over zoom. It is sacred, it is holy, if we can only perceive it.
Every experience is extraordinary, even when it is familiar, because at that moment it is all and everything we have. Each drop of water, breeze, cloud is special. Every book is a trove of learning. Every yearning a prayer, every song a hymn. Every person is amazing, and a life to be honored and revered. Every breath is a single gift never to be repeated. Every day is unique and blessed. Every friend a distinct joy.
Richard Rohr writes “The reality we face is simple yet difficult—the healing of the world hinges upon honoring the inherent sacredness of everyone and everything.”
What can you see today with a more holy gaze than yesterday? Not because it’s Holy Week, Passover, or Holi, but because your eyes perceive deeply the gift of it all. Take a moment to revel in such holy days and let’s make them last, stretch them out before us, to heal our world and our own hearts.
The Rev. Dr. Jan Fuller is the University Chaplain and Dean of Multifaith Engagement. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org