“I have an open square next Thursday, does anybody want to (fill in the blank)?”
Open square became a figure of speech among the group. Without explanation we all knew it was a day or block of hours on the calendar without an activity penciled in.
For a majority of my fifty years, I worried about the bounty of open squares in my life.
At times I felt envy and sadness, separate and different, when others explained they could barely wedge an additional person, place or thing into their small spaces between.
Wisdom taught me….
To recognize emptiness allows me to fill my minutes with life’s sweetest tea.
To guard my freedom as if it were my only child.
To see that I was mistaken…
Seneca said, “So it is—the life we receive is not short, but we make it so, nor do we have any lack of it, but are wasteful of it.”
If I was busy filling my squares, I probably would have never read On The Shortness Of Life, missing this lesson from a Master.
Imagine time as a landscape: long hills of open afternoons, unfenced horizons of hours, the vast and immaculate freedom of time which, until so very recently, all of humanity knew. But foreshorten the horizons, fence the days, restrict the hours, erect deadlines, add punctuality, alarm clocks and speed—enclose the commons of time, in other word—and people will feel pressured, even if they know how to live in a clock driven world. ~Jay Griffiths, A Country Called Childhood