It ain't easy
“Life has no meaning. Each of us has meaning and we bring it to life. It is a waste to be asking the question when you are the answer.” ― Joseph Campbell
At 17, I attended the New School, a college for students needing an alternative approach. We were free-spirited would-be artists and intellectuals who counted self-understanding, truth-seeking and communal living as priorities. We couldn’t concentrate on school subjects, but had great stamina for talking. We dove into a pool of Christian spirituality, Eastern philosophy and Jewish mysticism, and tossed around names such as Krishnamurti, Jung and Carl Rogers. We tried macrobiotic and vegetarian diets as well as meditation, yoga, martial arts and dance, hoping to find new pathways to understanding.
The pursuit of answers and understanding has been a constant for me. I see the same pursuit in many others. The demands of studies, work, family, love and life may strengthen or soften our beliefs and opinions, but a longing to know remains within us.
As we get older, the pursuit gets harder, as life itself gets more complex. Whenever anyone feels a sense of urgency about what they are meant to do, and how they should live, self-doubt and worry can easily emerge from the crevices of the mind and grow into monkeys on the back.
And then something unfortunate happens. The excitement of the quest and the journey becomes a burden. The fun of seeking the truth and asking deep questions becomes a duty. The inner critic points out our failings and decides we are guilty of inadequacies. The mind screams: “Why can’t you figure it out”? and “What are you going to do with your life?” We enter into a mean-spirited relationship with ourselves.
How about we call a truce and end this war of harsh words and strong judgments. Instead of fixating on ourselves as the problem, we can explore what really works for us.
If you are living an unfulfilled life and want to talk about it, call me.
Keep me posted,
“If you do follow your bliss you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. Follow your bliss and don't be afraid, and doors will open where you didn't know they were going to be.” ― Joseph Campbell
21/6/2013 04:41:52 am
I think you're right. As we get older, there may be harsher self criticism. I think there's also a greater degree of fear as we feel that at this point in our lives making changes might cause us to lose a great deal. Could be money, relationships, lifestyle: the things we maybe fought hard to gain at a different stage. So, now we need to let go of judging ourselves, and terror!
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My family, relationships, movement, nature, flexibility of mind, exploration of alternative perspectives & openness are central to my life.