“My home is my retreat and resting-place from the wars. I try to keep this corner as a haven against the tempest outside, as I do another corner of my soul.” ~ Michel Eyquem de Montaigne …
I find it rather intriguing that Michel would refer to his day-to-day life as “the wars.” And although not all of us will face real war situations in our daily lives, all of us will be bombarded with the tempests of life now and then. And that is why perhaps the most profound thing that Michel says here is that his home is his retreat. So many of us tend to see our homes as functional places to eat, to sleep, to keep our belongings in, to shower, and so forth. Yet when we only see them as functional places, we remove their ability to serve us as a retreat and a resting-place–no longer can they be a place in which we rejuvenate our minds, bodies, and souls, or where we rest ourselves and gather our strength for continuing on in our lives.
However, if we embrace this idea that our home is our retreat, we turn it into a comfortable place where we can go to relax and renew ourselves, a place to retreat to when life becomes burdensome or gets stressful. This empowers us with a healthy and powerful way to deal with the anxieties, worries, fears, and difficulties of life. Because wars or not, we will all have to deal with stress and face many challenges in life. And the better prepared we are spiritually, emotionally, intellectually, and physically, the greater our ability will be to overcome those challenges and not let them break us down.
As we journey through life, our homes can be our allies and our comforters if we let them. But we have to make them places that we love to go to, places where we love to spend time. This should not require us to spend large amounts of time, money, or energies to create, but it will require us to make home more amiable–perhaps tidying the place up, eliminating some clutter, decorating it in a more aesthetically pleasing way, and creating an environment that promotes a more positive and healthy mind, body, and soul. This also means minimizing television and outside noises, and keeping our homes peaceful places in which we can find pleasant shelter from the storms of life.
Take some time to make your home more appealing and comforting to you.
Questions to consider:
How can we make our homes into pleasant retreats without doing tons of spending on redecorating?
Why do so few people pay attention to the comfort levels of their homes?
How have our homes become much more functional than rejuvenating?
For further thought:
“He is happiest, be he king or peasant, who finds peace in his home.” ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe