Imagine you are a fire. Fires burn at different levels of intensity, from low barely glowing embers to tall roaring bonfires licking the night sky! What kind of fire are you? What is it that fuels you, feeding your burning desires?
It seems that a lot of us have simmered down to the tiniest spark on a cold black coal bed. We have somewhere along the way been sucked into poor health, a dead end job or a loveless relationship. The burning passion for life that once was has been drained away, our dreams and excitement for life gone. We have forgotten our purpose, our meaning, our visions of perfection and happiness.
As children, we laughed and played and were full of ourselves and of life. We looked at the world as our playground, at life as our quest, our adventure. We didn’t take things too seriously, we didn’t work too much, and most of all, we dreamed! We dreamed of castles in the clouds, and of being president or an astronaut or an artist. We had real friends and make believe friends, and we didn’t stop to smell the coffee, we stopped to smell flowers, and jump in puddles, and climb trees. Simply being alive was a magnificent splendor to savor from the tip of our tongue to our dirty barefoot toes. Simply being alive was enough to sustain us, enough reason for us to be happy.
Somewhere along the way, we began to grow up. Adults told us that our dreams were not practical, that we spent too much time playing, that we were too full of ourselves. They told us to behave in a calm, collected manner, and to stay clean and dress nicely. They told us to start thinking about the “real” things in life, and to quit messing around. They told us to stuff any excessive emotions down inside, because it was inappropriate to show them.
Now, society tells us that to have any success in life, we have to get a respectable job and work, work, work, even at the expense of family, health and dreams. Society tells us that we have to dress a certain way, and act a certain way, and live in a certain neighborhood, and drive a certain car. Society tells us that all of these things are a measure of success. The harder you work, the more money you earn, the more able you are to meet these criteria. And if you don’t follow these rules, then that means you don’t measure up to the standard, and are probably heading for failure. Having an unloving family atmosphere, feeling unwell on a regular basis (but still going to work mind you) and losing your love for life in the process, these things are not seen as failures by society, but merely the cost of such success.
A couple of years ago, I began a process of reevaluating my life. I had realized that I needed a drastic change. Shortly after I began this process, I discovered that I was pregnant, and this really brought a different perspective to my life! Upon the birth of my son Gareth, I also experienced a birth, the birth of a new, spiritual me that was committed to focusing on my dreams. However, at the time I felt I had no choice but to work full time and keep my son in day care. I yearned to have more time to spend with him, to write, and to be with my horses. Horses and writing are my main long time passions, and my son is a new one, and I knew that I had to make more time for all of these things.
On this path, I began to realize that nothing was more important than following my passion, that no dream is too silly, and that each individual is fulfilling his or her purpose in life and for the good of the planet by being true to their deepest desires. Whether your passion is to find a cure for cancer or simply to write poems, by discovering your passion in life and following it to the best of your ability, you are making the world a better place, and loving yourself in the process. The saying “changing the world one person at a time” is one of the most profound truths I have ever heard.
What is your passion? What would cause your spark to ignite into the brightest fire? Even though currently the consciousness of the planet is such that most of us are forced to work long hours five or more days a week doing something that is minimally exciting, there are still things that can be done to move in the direction of your life calling. One exercise I like to do, something I think is very important in rekindling inner light, is to schedule time each day to visualize the direction in which I want my life to go. I know this is easier said than done, but it is crucial to have some time to put all of your focus on your goals, even if it is only five minutes.
During this time, become still, close your eyes, breath deeply, and focus on what it is that makes you the happiest, your passion, your purpose. Picture this in your mind and allow the delightfulness of it to permeate your being. Imagine it first as a sparkle in the area below your belly button, then allow the feeling to spread outwards in a bubble. Allow it to roll over you like thick fur, imagine what it feels like, smells like and tastes like. Allow it to romance all of your senses as the bubble grows bigger and bigger. During this visualization, no feeling is inappropriate, so let all of your emotion come forth and bask in the power of your creative passion. The longer you can hold onto this joy and excitement, the better. Try doing a modified version during the day by simply imagining your joy and passion and allowing the happy energy to fill you up and inspire you.
Visualization is highly beneficial and refreshing for the mind and soul. It is also important to schedule time to do something physically to work towards your dreams and desires. Right now I spend most of my time with Gareth, and can only ride my horses once a week, but I cherish that one ride and am grateful for it. I know that at some point in the future I will visit them more frequently. There are so many little things that can be done to work towards your dreams if you are creative.
The most important thing to realize is that you - yes, you! - are worthy of receiving all that you desire, and that you do have the power to manifest those dreams. Our purpose in life is not to suffer and be denied what makes our heart sing, but to love ourselves enough to follow our passions. Do not limit your dreams, no matter how impractical they may be. Allow them to be realized, indulged, pursued. Spend time daydreaming. Remember what it was like to love and live and dance in the rain. Entertain the notion that maybe there is such a thing as perfection. Allow yourself to believe that you can do anything. Fan the flames of your wildest passion, and imagine the possibilities!
Copyright 2003, Alexia Alderson Chamberlynn