It's early morning on Melbourne Cup Day and all is well with the world. I got to sleep in until 6.30 so I am counting my blessings. The wood pigeons around my house are calling each other and wandering through the lawn out the back (which needs mowing) and the sky is overcast and still. I woke up with the urge to find a Shakespeare quote for my book and of course, I googled it.
"There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so." Shakespeare
I wonder if that's true in its purest sense. I know that there are many things that one culture may think of as bad that another will accept as perfectly fine.
The most obvious example of that is the variety of beliefs about how women should dress. Some cultures accept bare breasts and others don't accept bare anything, not even faces. Is there truly a right or wrong, or is that our thinking (or environment) has made it so? It is easy to see how standards of dress might have developed through the ages. I think if I lived somewhere with 40 degree days and covered in sand I would cover up entirely to protect myself. Similarly if I lived in a warm tropical island, I would uncover to allow the sea breezes to keep me cool.
Are all beliefs environmentally based at their origin? Did men then decide to cement it in law by saying that God willed it? Well, if he did, he willed a massive variety of all things! Eat pork, don't eat pork, cover up, don't cover up.
I like Esther Hicks' quote too: "Beliefs are just thoughts you keep thinking."
That loosens them up a bit doesn't it! If a belief is just a thought I keep thinking, then I can change it by choosing to think something else! Maybe that might be how the 21st century might be remembered by those who come after us. Maybe the 21st century will be remembered for how much we are changing the thinking of the 20th and previous centuries, how things we assumed were bad we came around to thinking were not so bad at all. Phrases like 'mixed race', 'unmarried mother', 'born out of wedlock', 'until death do us part' may become archaic and irrelevant. Maybe not. I'd like to come back to find out which aspects of our thinking we will keep and which we will let fade away.
On a more local subject, all around Melbourne young women are thinking about their outfits and hats for going to the races and I am thinking about the loads of washing that need doing and just how lovely it is to have a day off simply because a horse race is being run. I guess it is a no better reason than the Queen of England having a birthday, and I am not complaining. So many people are taking the Monday off before Cup Day so that they can have a long weekend. I don't blame them. It has been months since the last long weekend. I live in a small seaside town which has thousands of visitors on long weekends. The locals have their garage sales and the visitors fill the restaurants and pubs and walk along the beach. I hope for their sakes and those in Melbourne at the races that today is a beautiful day. Last weekend we had the Grand Prix motorcycle race here and the weather was glorious. I just love the roar of all the bikes that go through town and enjoy anticipating the appearance of a head and face when the bike riders take off their helmets.
I had a moment of absolute joy the other day, a fleeting 'all is very right with my world moment' which made my heart sing. I was taking my daughter and her partner to Korumburra to a party and on the way, we were listening to music and singing along. I don't know if you know the South Gippsland hills but they are lovely. We were singing along and I felt a surge of absolute pure bliss. Life is made up of of such little pleasures. At those times we can say, "All is very well in my world."