“Sister, can you give me shelter from the storm?” – Bob Dylan
Sanctuary and shelter are more important than ever.
Modern-day lament: a friend said to me, “THEY won’t let me turn my phone off. It rings at 10:00 at night!”
In our demanding electronic world where response time is measured in nanoseconds, creating a psychic and physical shelter that supports the refreshment of spirit is a necessary component of health. Hair-trigger readiness to respond to incoming messaging is a MICRO stress condition with MACRO health implications.
Like the sci-fi TV show, The Outer Limits, we control the horizontal and vertical of our electronic tethers.
All devices have on and off switches. So the obvious answer to my friend’s statement is to turn it off at a reasonable hour.
It is not good to put your smartphone charger next to the bed if you want a peaceful night’s sleep or just a quiet mid-afternoon nap.
Learning to create sanctuary is both a physical and emotional/mental state; learning to control the “when” of availability is key to the process.
Bedrooms are for peace and tranquility – best for sleep, lovemaking, and physical nourishment.
The bedroom as sanctuary should consist of soft colors and textures. The artwork should suggest contemplative visions. The view out of the windows should be of trees, sky, water. It is not the place for a treadmill or exercise bike. A yoga mat or plush carpet for stretching is appropriate – but not a widescreen TV blasting CNN or Fox Newscasts.
Sanctuary is created by intention and action.
Families often have quiet time before bedtime. Close your eyes and imagine the soft sounds of a loved one soaking in a calm, candlelit bath.
Where better to read a bedtime story such as Good Night Moon than safely ensconced under the covers of Mommy and Daddy’s bed? This works for nearly everyone and sets a grounded opportunity for sanctuary in everyday life.
What is sacred to you?
Building a shrine to a beloved icon or guru or loved one is another way of holding a spiritual pathway open. As we pass it each day we are reminded to apply our purpose and practice at every moment, not just during exceptional times.
On my desk, I have a photo of my parents, Barbara and Lenny in their prime. It reminds me daily of the precious gift of life they gave me through their union. And the photo of the sleeping buddha baby is my granddaughter. Life and love carry on, in our hopes and dreams.
Sacred space amplifies and focuses mindfulness in architecture. I’d love to help you create your own sacred environment to empower your passage through life.