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Play as a Form of Prayer

Updated: Aug 9, 2020

When I was little, our family went to church every Sunday. (EVERY SUNDAY!) Without fail. The only thing that broke up the tedium of grown-ups talking and talking and talking, was when we'd stop to sing hymns.

Unfortunately, our music director only knew one speed: dirge. We sang every song like we were marching to our deaths, but at least I didn't have to listen to the speakers for a while.

My siblings and I changed the words to the hymns, then giggled at our cleverness until mom gave us the stink eye. I still remember one hymn we changed, because it resonates with me today. The line was, "So when life gets dark and dreary, don't forget to pray." We changed it to, "Don't forget to play."

We grow up. We grow old. We grow tired. Our life becomes a dirge. We forget that when life gets dark and dreary, that's the time to play. Doesn't matter if you're 8 or 38 or 88, play brings an enchanted energy to our lives and automatically makes us feel happier.

If you haven't played for a long time, you're probably a horrible person to be around. Stop being that person and give play a shot. Everyone has their own brand of play. Maybe you're an outdoorsy person or maybe you'd rather get a set of markers and a coloring book. There's no wrong answer. (Well, the wrong answer is not to play at all.)

Here are some ideas:

*Go for a bike ride

*Go swimming

*Sit outside and read




*Practice your stand-up routine

*Take up taxidermy


*Play catch with a child or a dog, or both

*Sing out loud in your car

*Go hiking

*Chase butterflies

*Learn to knit

*Start a neighborhood basketball game

The list is endless! When you practice play, you'll find you're less upset, less grumpy, less stressed, and not nearly so dark and dreary. Play is a form of prayer. It lifts us into the vibration of appreciation and joy. Who doesn't need more of that?

What are your favorite ways to play?

Peri Kinder is a Certified Life Coach, Certified Yoga Teacher, Meditation Instructor and Humor Columnist.

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