“Humans believe so many lies because we aren’t aware. We ignore the truth or we just don’t see the truth. When we are educated, we accumulate a lot of knowledge, and all that knowledge is just like a wall of fog that doesn’t allow us to perceive the truth, what really is.” — Miguel Angel Ruiz
Why are you here on this earth?
What is your purpose, if you associate yourself with one?
Rest assured this is not an existentialist treatise but something simpler.
These types of questions are popular in every culture. The journey called life with its twists and turns is quite a trip. We trudge along through childhood to adulthood experiencing a various events while learning, growing, falling and getting up again.
In the West we live in a society that tries to mould us into conditioned men and women. Go with the crowd, listen to the media and governmental officials. Don’t buck the system because the system works.
Does it really?
At some point, everyone asks themselves deeper purposeful questions while searching for the truth. Many times painful circumstances compel us to stop and contemplate life.
I’m drawn to a passage by Dr. Alex Lickerman who writes in The Undefeated Mind: On the Science of Constructing an Indestructible Self: “Nietzsche once wrote that he who has a why to live can bear almost any how. According to Nichiren Buddhism, however, not every why is created equal. To build the strongest life force possible — one that can bear the weight of any how — Nichiren Buddhism argues we need a why to live that in some way involves contributing to the well-being of others.”
“Let us go in; the fog is rising.” — Emily Dickinson
I’m up in the mountains as I write this enjoying solitude and peace. This morning there’s a thick fog hovering over the home.
As I sit outside taking in the stunning morning, I realise many times become stuck in a spiritual fog. Our perspective is skewed and we can’t see beyond our current circumstances or ego.
The fog made it impossible to see the beautiful view this morning, so I closed my eyes and tried to imagine it. I know it’s there beyond the fog and I know it will be visible in a few hours when the fog lifts.
Likewise, when we experience darkness, we act less than graceful. We become frustrated, succumbing to negativity and cannot see beyond the fog. We believe the situation will continue forever and get mired in bad moods. We fail to realise that foggy mornings turn into gorgeous days.
“And when the fog’s over and the stars and the moon come out at night, it’ll be a beautiful sight.” — Jack Kerouac
I sat in the fog this morning and enjoyed the stillness and majesty of nature. I watched clouds of fog inch towards me. I liken it to the stillness of mornings that flows through us.
I haven’t taken time to just sit still for weeks because of the busyness that overwhelmed me. Sometimes we need to ground ourselves in Mother Nature; to reconnect with our roots so to speak.
Time away is worthwhile, but what about everyday life?
Do you let the hustle and bustle of everyday living overpower you?
Do you need to be busy all the time?
Even if you are busy with things that matter, do you compromise time for meditation and sitting quietly to reconnect with yourself?
We need to make time to sit in the fog and find our bearings. But many of us are caught up with agendas and to do lists, we forget to come home to ourselves until it’s too late. And by then it can be too late.
“It isn’t life’s “content” that determines its value. It’s the awareness you bring to it, moment to moment. It’s attention itself. Presence is its same self regardless of the particulars of the moment,” affirms author Jan Frazier in The Freedom of Being: At Ease with What Is.
“Sometimes it is hard to see in life. If the fog rolls in we can’t see anything. Most people get caught up in life that they forget the purpose of life is to be happy.” — Frederick Lenz
If you want answers to your life’s purpose or your next step, make time for you. Time to sit and be still. Time to walk in nature and reconnect with yourself. Time to contemplate, breathe and relax. Quiet your mind.
If you want answers, make it a priority to retreat into silence.
Switch the mobile device on silent for a moment. I promise you, nothing will change. Facebook will still be there and so too will your Instagram followers.
Life’s journey is simple and believe it or not, you are in control more than you think. If things are not the way you like them to be, make changes. I give you permission to change your circumstances.
Get up earlier, stay up later. Go away for a few days. Go for a walk. Turn the TV and computer off. Leave your cell phone at home or turn it off. We are addicted to technology so much so that our attention span has burnt out.
A reader recently wrote a comment on an article I wrote that highlights this point of view. She said: “Teaching people to observe their surroundings and thoughts, in a way that creates being in the present moment, is a difficult process for many to grasp. When I take clients outside to observe nature, they often are confused about why the present moment is important. The constant stimulation of our brains by electronics changes our neural pathways. We have lost our connection to the earth and the positive effect it has when we are still and take notice.”
I was a little saddened that people are confused why the present moment is important. Because that is ALL you have! There is no tomorrow or past, but many people process them in the present moment while “it” (present moment) slips through their fingers.
Something must give if you want a better life. You can’t keep doing the same things while expecting conditions to improve. The fog represents the fog of separation and the illusion that blinds you from the truth.
Your truth differs from my truth, yet they are the one true constant in our lives. They are our compass and if we lose our bearings what assurances are there we will find our way back again?
It’s what author Donald Altman means when he says in Clearing Emotional Clutter: “If you tell yourself something long enough, you might end up believing it, even if it has no basis in truth.”
Rediscover what is important to you and pursue it passionately. The fog will eventually lift and reveal another day, yet your time is limited and you don’t want to keep dragging your heels hoping for a better life.
It is here and NOW, when you set the intention to live intentionally. Only then will you experience life cascading through you in its infinite glory.
Originally published at medium.com