Failing to meet your true destiny is a tragic act of free will.
Those dozen words from Anthon St. Maarten have been swimming around in my head since encountering them for the first time yesterday. I have since expanded the short statement into a generalized meaning that helps me to hang on to my interpretation of Maarten’s words: when my life situation is no longer blamed on other people, circumstances and fate, my perception is peeled back to show it is my choices and actions that most shape my life. Intellectuality I already knew that. But having that wisdom newly refocused to clarity is a sure path to an improved use of my free will and in turn a conduit to a continually improving life experience.
I made sure to pay attention to everything I was doing. To be fully in the moment. Because that’s all life is, really, a string of moments that you knot together and carry with you. Hopefully most of those moments are wonderful, but of course they won’t all be. The trick is to recognize an important one when it happens. Even if you share the moment with someone else, it is still yours. Your string is different from anyone else’s. It is something no one can ever take away from you. It will protect you and guide you, because it IS you.
Until recently, I thought it was death that gave meaning to life–that having an endpoint is what spurred us on to embrace life while we had it. But I was wrong. It isn’t death that gives meaning to life. Life gives meaning to life. The answer to the meaning of life is hidden right there inside the question.
What matters is holding tight to that string, and not letting anyone tell us our goals aren’t big enough or our interests are silly. But the voices of others aren’t the only ones we need to worry about. We tend to be our own worst critics. Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote: ‘Most of the shadows in this life are caused by our standing in our own sunshine.’ … Wisdom is found in the least expected places. Always keep your eyes open. Don’t block your own sunshine. Be filled with wonder. From “Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life” by Wendy Mass
The meaning of life is not some cosmic, out-of-reach and mysterious explanation. That’s difficult to see most of the time because us humans have the innate ability to over complicate things and obscure our ability to accurately see, know and perceive. Only by living rooted in the present as much as possible is “the meaning of it all” to be found. It is not “outside of me”. I was born with it, but have been conditioned to believe I was incomplete and the meaning of my life was outside of me. IT ISN’T!
Even without being exposed to the clarity of St. Maarten’s statement before, I’ve been living with that sort of self-direction now for several years. Gratefully, with those dozen words as a newly focused reminder I can do it even more.
There are essentially two questions in life –
a spiritual question and a material question.
The spiritual question is ‘Who am I?’
The material question is
‘What am I to do with my life?’
One leads to the other.