And Hoping for a More Prosperous New Year for All
“The walls and ceiling were so hung with living green, that it looked a perfect grove, from every part of which, bright gleaming berries glistened. The crisp leaves of holly, mistletoe, and ivy reflected back the light, as if so many little mirrors had been scattered there. . . . Heaped up on the floor, to form a kind of throne, were turkeys, geese, game, poultry, brawn, great joints of meat, sucking-pigs, long wreathes of sausages, mince-pies, plum-puddings, barrels of oysters, red-hot chestnuts, cherry-cheeked apples, juicy oranges, luscious pears, immense twelfth-cakes, and seething bowls of punch, that made the chamber dim with their delicious steam. . . . there sat a jolly Giant, glorious to see, who bore a glowing torch, in shape not unlike Plenty’s horn. . . . Its dark brown curls were long and free: free as its genial face, its sparkling eye, its open hand, its cheery voice, its unconstrained demeanour, and its joyful air. Girded round its middle was an antique scabbard; but no sword was in it, and the ancient sheath was eaten up with rust.” —Charles Dickens, “The Second of the Three Spirits,” A Christmas Carol  (1843)
Dickens is a hard act to follow, so we’ll be brief. For the holiday season and in the new year to come we wish you and your families and friends good cheer, good health, and prosperity. We wish for the “living green” that animates the spirit of Christmas Present, and for the peace symbolized by his rusted, empty scabbard. Not war, not greed, but abundance, fertility, and kindness to all, including the earth that gives us life.
We also send a special prayer for the security and safe return of U.S. military personnel stationed far from home, and for the many homeless and jobless here and abroad: May the new year treat you better, and may you have strength and good (better) fortune in equal measure.
A word about our previous post, “Winter of Our Discontent .” We certainly didn’t want to bring anyone down—especially at a time of year when everyone seeks (and deserves) “comfort and joy,” solace and good cheer—but it’s our view that happiness is best attained by identifying what is making us sad. Then the remedy begins. And so, comfort, good cheer, and joy to all.