Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Waking up with the Sun

Note: This post was submitted for round 2 of YeahWrite Super challenge. The challenge was to write a persuasive essay answering the question 'What is the best time of day?'

And it did not make it to the next round.

Copied from Google images

How many sunrises have you missed in your lifetime? Okay, let me be easy on you, when was the last time you watched the sun rise? And when you did, how did that leave you feeling?

There was never a night or a problem that could defeat sunrise or hope ~Bernard Williams

It is precisely for this reason, I like this time of the day best. It is inspiring; the way sun rises and commands a section of the planet to begin their day’s work. Witnessing the morning take shape provides a kind of misanthropic thrill, of a world not yet choked by zooming cars and hurried conference calls. While sunsets are humbling, sunrises always illuminate hope, optimism and inspiration.

Get outside. Watch the sunrise. Watch the sunset. How does that make you feel? Does it make you feel big or tiny? Because there's something good about feeling both ~Amy Grant

I wouldn’t want to give the impression that I’m a regular visitor to this particular time-slot, but the very few times I did, it has left me wanting to become a morning person. I must have seen a total of five in my 29 years of existence. I had a total of 10,585 chances, which makes it 0.05% utilization. Sad, isn’t it?

It was as recent as the beginning of this month, while camping on the sides of a beach in Delaware that reminded me of what I was missing every day. We woke up at 5 am, as the Sun was set to make an appearance at 5:25. We saw it on the horizon, a small piece of glowing fire, emerging without much ado, darkness surrendering meekly to the steadily growing sun. Within moments, it was morning. It was amazing, how everything came alive. As we turned, it was not just us, but hundreds of fellow campers who were up before their usual time to take part in this wonderful phenomenon.

It’s ironical that an everyday occurrence is so rarely absorbed. While I can’t speak for the older generation, it’s the younger generation that seems to believe strongly in having the freedom to wake up whenever they want.

“You don’t know what it is like to sleep late into the morning, daddy!”

“Ahh. Sleep is precious. It is important for me to function wholly. The more you get, the better.”

“I am a night owl. I am most productive in the stillness of the night.”

How many times have we heard these statements? I am guilty of it myself. While it is true that our lifestyles have changed a lot, and we are fighting demanding needs that require us to stay up late at nights, it all comes down to managing your time and planning well, to combat the side effects of such a living. Morning rituals play an important role in improvisation because, sunrise and early mornings are not just for getting mesmerized but also for tapping fresh energy reserves to get you going for the day.

One more reason the time of sun rise is special for me is it is so HARD to be a part of it. Resisting the urge the snuggle back into the warm covers, not hitting the snooze button and crawling our way out of bed needs a lot of will power and commitment. Atleast until it becomes a habit. This is one major reason why we tend to become night owls. It simply is so much easier to not sleep than sleep and wake up early! It’s not a bad thing at all, all I am saying is we have conveniently traded discipline with instant gratification.
And also, as a lot of surveys and blogposts indicate, the most common thing among successful people in this world is, they all are early risers. When you are up around the time of sun rise, that makes you ahead of 99.9% of the population that is still sleeping. That means you get a lot more things done. And in time. That is a lot of head start, according to me.

Early mornings are also synonymous with quiet and solitude. Like one of my colleagues and friends said, as you watch the day unfold, the world at a standstill and the mind not wandering a lot, it’s the best gift you could give yourself before being dragged into the rat race. Letting the radiating sun fall on your face, gathering your head and doing what you like to do sets the right mood for the rest of the day.

The importance of the Sun and morning rituals have long been established in the Hindu literature. We worship the Sun god, so we have rituals consisting of prayers, mantras and offerings to the Sun. The now world famous Yoga has a technique called Surya Namaskara or Sun Salutation comprising a sequence of 12 asanas.  It is recommended to be practiced early in the morning, before breakfast. Vastu Shastra (Science of architecture) also recommends east facing homes to let sunshine into the rooms early in the day. All the documentation in the world, be it the modern internet or ancient scriptures, promote a healthy lifestyle that involves waking up with the sun.

How much ever we hate early mornings, it wins against any time of the day because nothing is more glorifying than watching the day break; nothing is more rewarding than a quiet time for yourself; nothing is more important than a step towards a healthier lifestyle in this race called life.

And the best in the world is often reserved for those who rise above themselves.
PS : This is the feedback I received from the judges.

What the judges really liked about “Waking Up With The Sun”:
•The tension between acknowledging a favorite time of day and the fact that you rarely experience it and don't actively seek it out is well handled.

•Your essay gives an array of support for "waking up with the sun," and the tone is welcoming and warm.

•Good use of imagery and descriptive language.

Where the judges found room for improvement:

•The significant punctuation errors in this essay make it a bit of a rough ride. In addition, the quotations don't add anything to the reader's understanding: it's better to have a well-phrased original thought or just silence than to put in a quote that doesn't really strengthen or augment your argument.

•The essay's organization would benefit from a strict outline; focusing on the recent camping trip reminder of the sunrise and moving forward from there would be an effective star.

• This essay would benefit from a more direct introductory paragraph. It takes the reader a little too long to figure out the specific time of day being discussed.

In case you missed it, this did NOT make it to the next round :)


  1. Nice. I wish I can get a waking up early routine. Although I tried a lot, but until now I always wake up late. But after reading your post, I think I should try one more time. Thank you a lot

  2. I love sunrise but like you I love to sleep in for an extra 5 minutes if I can.I liked your thoughts and thanks for sharing the feedback Sampada!


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