In Italy, today - the Monday after Easter Sunday – is known as La Pasquetta (“Little Easter”) or Lunedì dell’Angelo (“The Monday of the Angel”). Ir is a day for relaxing outside, for going for a walk and having a picnic. It probably has it roots in ancient Spring festivals, when people would gather outdoors to celebrate. It was a day when a journey, a walk, or even a drive in the car had to be made. The religious meaning given to it, at least as it was explained to me, was to remember the journey made by Jesus’ two disciples on the road to Emmaus on Easter Day.
These two disciples set out on Sunday for the village of Emmaus, a walk of a few days. As they were going along, Jesus joined them. They did not recognize him. They were replaying the events of the past – the days of the Crucifixion – and were worrying about what was to happen to them. Their concerns and chatter, their fear-driven desire to run away, did not allow them recognize that God was actually walking with them. In this way, they are just like us, caught in worries about the past, or running away or basing our view of the future on fears. Like us, we often fail to recognize the richness of our life lies in the present moment, when all we can experience is right with us. Often, to be fully alive, all we have to do is see what is being offered to us, right in this moment, rather than thinking our joy lies somewhere else, sometime else. It is sad if we are so focused on getting to a destination, we do not notice what is right beside us now.
The present moment
contains past and future.
The secret of transformation,
is in the way we handle this very moment.
Thich Nhat Hahn, Understanding Our Mind