Just because the second one of these is coming out on day 2 of Lent doesn’t mean there will be one every day. That would be against the spirit of unbusy, and indeed the spirit of blogging. Only blog if you have something to blog about…
Today has been quite a ‘busy’ one in terms of #NOTBUSY activity. Here are two highlights.
Diary management is crucial to the art of unbusyness. A meeting I should have been at a week ago was cancelled because we could not make a quorum. As it happens it only takes two but the maximum is three.
Today possible dates for the next meeting were offered by email. There was only one date the other two could do. I was also semi-free to attend in that there was nothing specific in my diary for that time, but it was earmarked for ‘preparation’. The time wise knows that if you don’t plan in time to prepare you end up not preparing and become boring and repetitive, boring and repetitive, boring and repetit.. (you get it).
Anyway I fudged my reply and it clearly came across that I was protesting my own busyness. A smart email quickly winged its way back (coped to all…) ‘Now come on Stephen, ain’t that busyness!!!!!’
I was bowled out for a duck on day 2. So… a big slice of humble pie and a new email: ‘sorry, I am not free to attend but if my diary changes I will come along’.
The second thing is less personal and more delightful. I happened to be in the car when ‘Ramblings’ was broadcast on BBC Radio 4. Clare Balding was talking to Dr Kate Kirkwood. As the blurb says,
Kate attempts to lead Clare on a path of spiritual renewal by teaching her to walk silently. Silence is not a state that comes naturally to Clare but as she and Kate walk where the mood takes them, in the Herefordshire countryside just outside Haye on Wye, they discover why walking can be one of the best forms of stress relief.
If you listen you will be gently drawn into the idea of mindfulness and out of the stream of relentless rush. The programme was full of Buddhist insights and, fair play to the Buddhists, it is Buddhism which of all the religions has tried the hardest to make its spiritual wisdom accessible. At one point Dr Kirkwood says that ‘thinking is an overrated activity’. As she says, when she thinks it often the same old, same old. Me too – and perhaps you too. Yet she acknowledges that the brain is a thought-generating device and so if we want to find peace we need to relax into having thoughts and letting them just float away.
Anyway, it was a great broadcast and for me there were two tremendous consequences.
First to begin to think of NOTBUSY as Christian Mindfulness. Expect more about that in a later blog.
And second, Clare Balding retweeted my tweet about it. Thanks, Clare.
If you haven’t heard the programme, this is the link: