Just recently we had our annual Christmas Choir Concert.  An inspiring feature this year was singing the Gloria, from Schubert’s Mass in A Flat.  Do go listen to at least the first few minutes.  The message is rich and timeless:  “Glory to God, and on Earth, Peace and Good Will to All.”

Whether you honor G(g)od, the Mystery, Nature, Love, or Life, being in touch with our joy, and making a joyful noise is a splendid way to celebrate... even as we also acknowledge the dark — in the world, and at this time of year.  It invites us to remember that light,  joy, love, are always present, and we can invite them into our hearts and lives at any moment.

So here, for you, are some wonderful ways people are Making a Joyful Noise 🙂

Do you like saxaphones and/or Deck the Halls? check this out.

Take heart with this Hallelujah Chorus way north in Alaska.

Like to laugh?  I did that a lot during this one:  Singing tweeted tips on how to keep warm, set to music from Carmina Burana — especially if you know or have sung it!

Apropos Joy:  I have recently taken a course called Wired for Joy, which uses cutting edge neuroscience to show us how to create more joy in our lives. The approach is called Emotional Brain Training (EBT).  Premise: the ways we create and handle the stress and difficulties in our lives were wired in our brains very early, and these old, outworn neuropathways run us, unless we re-train our brain to move through stress and back to well-being and joy. Good news:  this is absolutely possible and feasible!

Apropos celebration and giving:  that wily old western Zen Buddhist, Alan Watts, says in his The Book:  On the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are,  is that we are an inseparable part of the whole, deeply interconnected, and what we give is not worth much unless it comes from a place of enjoyment and acceptance.  (You can actually read a short version here.)

Finally, I have to put in a plug for my nephew, Joe Kremer, and his band Pterodactyl.  They’re just finishing up a cross-country tour, and played in Vancouver on Dec. 1.  One cool song, with a masterful video to match, is called The Break.  Joyful noises, I’d say!!  🙂

May your holidays be bright, full of love, warmth, music, peace, memorable moments, and great JOY!

Jill Schroder is the author of BECOMING: Journeying Toward Authenticity.  BECOMING makes a perfect gift  — an invitation for self -reflection, and to mine our memorable moments, for meaning and growth.  Perfect for Christmas or any time of year.

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