The eponymous song “Singin’ in the Rain” comes from the beloved 1952 movie of the same name, starring Gene Kelley.
What a beautiful idea that we should be out singing in the rain, enjoying and reveling even in life’s downpours. It’s the quintessential – “ain’t nothing going to bring my spirits down” attitude in a beautifully sung and choreographed song and dance.
I heard a different take on this by Father Kevin Yell, a Catholic priest. He talked about a very different spiritual religious message in the song that I had never considered. Yell pointed out that in the opening bars of that song, Kelley starts singing “dobedododododododobedo” before he launches into the full song.
The spiritual religious brilliance of the song is that the two words “do” and “be” are pushed so close together that the space between them becomes difficult to hear. We live between doing and being. You’ve probably seen the phrase “you are a human being, not a human doing.”
We all do so much – especially in our fast-paced technological lives – that we need to remember to stop.
There is always stuff that we should be doing or that we could be doing.
I’d like to ask you (and ask myself) to take some more time for being.
That’s the imperative in the Hebrew Bible, after all – to take time off once a week to get some space from our work.
Even God needs to take time off according to The Bible.
There is a quote that Einstein wrote to a junior high school student in 1943, “Do not worry about your difficulties in mathematics; I can assure you, mine are still greater.”
If I ever think I am busy, I sometimes imagine what God’s to-do list would look like. (That would explain why God doesn’t always get around to do all the things we think God should be doing…)
We all need to do a better job of balancing being and doing.
I have to say, without trying to brag, that I’m proud to have cut down my high school teaching schedule to two-thirds time. I enjoy my life much better with 33% fewer students to tend to. And, I have not filled my time with only Religion Outside-TheBox work. I actually have been taking time to enjoy my family – without doing.
Let’s not kid ourselves that taking time off is easy – especially if we aren’t miles from home. It’s very difficult. In fact, Science magazine recently reported that adults would rather endure electric shocks that sit alone with their thoughts.
But, we must. We must strike more of a balance and BE a little more than we DO.
This week’s #wisdom_biscuit:
Take some time off for balance and being.