A man once bought himself a cemetery plot and a lawn chair, and then took a week of vacation to sit on the chair at his plot. I don't think he sat there because the view was pleasant or because he was proud of his new property. He did it because he wanted to see his life from the point of view of his death and his death from the point of view of his life.
It is not easy to do more than pay lip service to the scriptural call "Be still and know that I am God." As anyone who has tried with any regularity soon discovers, becoming still before God is not easy. It is said that Teresa of Ávila once shook her hourglass in frustration because her time of prayer was passing at a snail's pace.
We recently asked five Century contributors to reflect on the
9/11 attacks and the decade that followed. Century
subscribers can also read the following highlights from our coverage in the
weeks following the attacks.
I lament biblical illiteracy as much as anyone,
but I think surveys sometimes load the dice against scripture when illustrating
the public's unfamiliarity with the Bible. A recent example was noted by the
American Bible Society as it released The
Freedom Bible in connection with the 9/ll anniversary.
Plant a garden. Listen to birdsong. Sit quietly in a park without checking your phone. These activities are examples of ecotherapy, a form of mental health treatment based on the idea that nature has healing powers. “If you hold moist soil for 20 minutes, the soil bacteria begin elevating your mood,” says Craig Chalquist, an innovator in this new field. “You have all the antidepressant you need in the ground.” Chalquist maintains that it helps even more to give something back to nature—not just looking at trees, but caring for them (Atlantic, October).