What does it mean to look within, and how does meditation play a key role in self-discovery?
The concept of looking within is foreign to many people. In our busy lives, we spend most of our time worrying about keeping all of the juggling balls in the air, whether we are the CEO of a large corporation, a corporate employee, a tradesman, small business owner, or laborer etc. Whatever your position in life, we feel as though the goal each day is to survive for yet another day in many cases. Those of us who have not yet found purpose in our work, can often times say things like “Work is okay, but I do it mostly because of the money” or “I do it because it I was destined through the expectations of my parents to choose this profession”, or for many other reasons.
So many of us are lost within the idea of going with the flow, and not rocking the boat, keeping our head to the grindstone, or shooting for that retirement goal of attaining a certain amount of money before we retire. Although it’s good to plan for the future, we may get stuck into a rut, because of the expectations of others, of society, or of our own unwillingness to make changes in our own life. This mentality of “go with the flow”, “don’t rock the boat”, or the fear of change, can really rob us of our opportunities, and our intended purpose, and it can also rob us of our ability to serve in the ways it was intended to be, when we agreed to come into this life in the first place.
Certainly we cannot expect that attaining a certain amount of money for our retirement, is the best and perhaps the only way to spend our time on this planet. With the “scrimp and save” mindset, we are not allowed to let out our creativity as much as we’d like, nor are we likely allowing ourselves the ability to travel the world and experience new things, or to do anything that adds value to our life, or to the lives of others. This does not preclude the idea of making money in general, but rather how we go about attaining our wealth. It’s very important for our success, to make time to reflect on why and how we want to make money in the first place. I feel that if our focus in on attaining money for the sake of being more in service to others, then the laws of the universe can more easily go to work with making available those people and resources that are needed to help support your life’s purpose, and in contrast negative motivations usually end up dying out in the end for the lack of motivation and purpose.
How do I know what my life’s purpose is?
When we contemplate these ideas for the sake of finding our purpose, we have to start thinking about whether or not we truly understand what it means to “take time out”, and to “reflect.” Kind of like waiting on our path, like in a prior article shared on this site. It would be worth reading this article now, if you haven’t been introduced to the idea of the “choice point”, and it’s association to our path, and our destination.
Waiting on the Path:
This article covers the idea that we all come here with a sort of contract, composed of things we agreed to experience and accomplish in this life. We are drawn to certain careers, ideas, and execution of talents for a very important reason. The reasons are unknown to us consciously – but in many ways, are known to us subconsciously, or through what is called our higher-self. There are many dimensions of our consciousness and personal understanding… that can be left unexplored, when there’s never any time set aside for reflection, meditation and introspection. Now that sort of seems like the Chicken or the egg situation there doesn’t it? I mean – “What’s the difference between reflection, and meditation?” Should one come before the other, or can they be experienced at the same time? Through my personal experience, as well as the experience of many others, there seems to be some sort of soul level conversation that happens outside of our conscious mind, when we truly have mastered the ability to quiet the mind through the practice of meditation, or chanting. This meditation or chanting seems to be experienced more on an energetic (soul) level, while reflection is more on the physical (neurological) level, assisted by the same energetic process in some ways.
If we can focus exclusively on the chant, or solely on our breathing – putting most of the scattered thoughts to rest, we can then begin to have a sort of automatic soul-level conversation with ourselves, which can provide us with the ability to reset our mind, body and spirit complex, which can subsequently help lead us towards the discovery of our own life’s purpose. Once we have rested the mind enough, we can then later use this sort of download (or knowledge gained), to then see how we can logically address some of the ideas, and personal discoveries of our purpose, and begin to implement a physical plan to get us on our path to working on purpose. Sleeping does not necessarily adequately rest the mind either (especially those with an active dream state), which is why so many people suffer from exhaustion no matter how much they seem to sleep. This is in many cases due to the things left festering in our minds, because of never resting the mind enough through meditation. Meditation is truly the only way to quite the mind to the extent that it can truly heal itself. This meditation practice, opens up a beacon of communication to our higher self, or to the other realms of knowledge, as well as our spiritual guides, gods and angels.
Moving toward the understanding of purpose!
This Is the beginning of the process towards understanding purpose, and with the next level of reflection, we can take it to the next level with taking action towards aligning ourselves with our passion, and talents. In reflection, we begin to think logically “somewhat” about how to execute our plan, and this tends to be where people get hung up, and many excuses can be made in this stage of the process of self discovery. Some of the excuses might be, “I don’t have enough of the right education” (living under societal norms exclusively), “I’m not sure that I have the talent for something like that” (not knowing for sure what your inherent talents are), “not sure I could take a risk like that” (fear of failure). In life, the most successful people are those who have identified a passion for something, and then immediately align that with their own personally identified talents – whether they have a PHD on the subject, or whether they have found another (equally successful) way to educate themselves on the same subject.
All one has to do is look at Forbes magazine to know that motivation and passion are more important than any other factors. This brings out the point of service to others, and wanting to share our talents no matter the social norms, and no matter our obstacles financially, physically, socially or otherwise. Passion, drive and dedication to an idea when you are truly following your heart, and your inner guidance is a very powerful catalysts towards many lasting successes in your life. There are no greater riches in this world, than with doing what you love, no matter the compensation. Happiness in life comes more from living on purpose, than on just having things to brag about.
Through aligning with our purpose, passions and talents, and identifying areas of innovation that we can align with, we can surely have a vast impact on our own lives, and the lives of those we will serve with our inherent talents. After the reflection and planning phases, and trying to execute some of our ideas, we may need even more answers, or guidance as to the specifics of how to best navigate our path. Meditation again can continue to offer many of the answers we need with the ability this practice has with slowing the mind, so that thoughts can later be processed… without the chaotic racing of the physical mind. So, the process of discovering and perfecting our understanding of our purpose, is to start somewhere, either reflecting first, and meditation second (or vice-versa), but that the basic idea is that it is a cyclical (and synergistic) process.
This process is the never-ending process of enlightenment and learning – which includes sorting through our thoughts, and then executing our plans to attain our now purpose filled goals, through new means of education, motivation, desire, and in a place of service to others before service to self. We then follow mostly what we’re passionate about, even while “keeping the lights on” in the meantime with an unrelated job that helps us survive for a period of time. The idea is to get busy navigating our path, and the people, places, opportunities and things will eventually show up… when you set forth on purpose, and are truly aligned and engaged. If your passion, and talents are not fully understood first however, you may find yourself spinning your wheels for quite some time, until there is a time of epiphany or enlightenment towards understanding your purpose through the sharing of your personal gifts. Keep listening to your heart, and let your inner guidance help you on your intended path, so that the world can benefit from your natural talents and spiritual gifts.
Some people have always known what they are passionate about!
There are some people in this world, that seemingly from birth have always known what it is they were passionate about. And they have made their passions, their career for the rest of their lives, and will die doing the thing that they love; even if that career doesn’t produce a lot of income to make the person physically comfortable. The comfort in that case, is in knowing they are making a positive impact on the lives of others. Success and happiness is less about money, than it is about finding purpose in what we do, no matter what we choose to do, or in what we have to do to get where we want to go. It seems that those who align themselves with their purpose, will often times have exactly what they need to accomplish their goals (the power of vibrational-frequency and manifestation). This is especially true, if the goal has nothing to do with a “money only focus”, and is more focused on service to others, where the right amount of money/resources automatically flows. Service to others could be a “first-responder” sort of job, a waitress, fireman, policeman, doctor, lawyer etc. Pretty much all jobs and careers have some kind of service oriented aspect to them (if you think deeply enough), but not every player in this life looks at life this way.
Now there are good and bad players in all walks of life, but the ones that are living their careers, jobs and running their businesses from a place of purpose… tend to be the most successful at what they do, and as as result have the biggest impact on these around them. There is a sort of ripple effect in all cases with being around those who live all aspects of their lives on purpose, where what they do becomes an example for others. Those living on purpose are usually individuals like Martin Luther King, who have the greatest impact on our world, our cultures, and our collective ideals, through following what is in their hearts, and not letting anyone stop them… because of the level of faith they have in their own purpose. Some people call that a calling, some people call it listening to their hearts. These kinds of people however tend to be some of the most successful and socially impactful leaders of all time. Be a leader now in your own life; it all starts with “Finally Looking Within”, and resolving our past and present obstacles, socially, spiritually, and intellectually. Meditation, and time spent in reflection, and following that up with action, can really make a huge impact on your life.
To continue or comment on this conversation, please register to share your own ideas about your purpose, and how to you attained the understanding of your own purpose. The world needs your participation and your passion, and many others need to know how you affect the lives of those around you each and every day. How do you reflect on your daily life, and what have you gained from your own meditation practice? Namaste and God Bless!