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Of purpose and pain, and of butterflies, too
The only way to take control of your life, raise your standard of living and move beyond merely surviving is to create your own unique product or service that you offer to increasing numbers of people in exchange for the things of value that you desire. This simple formula applies to countries as well as people. A self-sufficient economy has its own products or services of value to export to the world. Similarly, a self-sufficient individual has something of value to exchange in the global marketplace. That thing of value is based on your natural talent, skill, or interest—in other words, your passion!
Consider for a moment what life would be like if you believed that your presence here on the earth was not random, but by choice. Just suppose that the fact that you exist here, now, at this place and at this time in the evolution of the planet. was by deliberate choice. In other words, that (1) either you were chosen and sent by someone or some thing, or (2) you yourself chose to come and manifest here.
Interesting concept to ponder, don’t you think?
Well, we won’t get into deciding which, if either, is true, nor debate pre-destiny, fate or free will, nor explore the deeper metaphysical and spiritual ramifications of it all right now. Just accept and ponder the concept for the purpose of this discussion.
So, the next logical set of questions you might ask yourself are: If I was chosen, or if I did choose to be here, then why? Why and for what reason was I chosen and sent? Or, why and for what purpose did I choose to come here? Did I chose to be here so I could be a worker bee for the sole purpose of making someone else wealthy in this life? Was I chosen to live out my life as an employee, to enjoy life only on weekends, retire with an inadequate pension, and return from whence I came?
Or, did I come here for something greater? Is there some grander purpose that I should be seeking and to which I should be devoting my life? Am I here to do great things?
In other words—-and this is the key question which I suggest be used to begin all inquiry into pursuing a passion-centered lifestyle -—why am I here on the planet?"
Case in point
I had dinner recently with a young lady who is an ethical vegan. In other words, she was moved to change her lifestyle and decided to adopt a vegan lifestyle (no animal-based food or clothing) once she became truly aware of the suffering of animals that is a part of our meat-centered, dairy-deluded, drug-experimenting, cosmetic-testing society.
During the course of our discussion, she was moved to tears while thinking about the untold suffering that happens every day in every part of the planet, and that goes unnoticed by most people who are unaware, ignored by most who do know, and accepted as normal by most everyone else.
I, too, was moved by the depth of emotion she had around this issue. It struck me that she might be an “empath,” able to experience the pain of other sentient beings. It also inspired me to suggest that there was something about the pain that she, herself, might be overlooking.
To discover what that might be, let’s go back to our opening question and ask of this empathic vegan: Why is she here? Why was she chosen? Why did she choose? Why is she now "burdened" with the ability to so intimately empathize with the suffering of others?
“There’s a purpose to your pain, my dear.”
In the pursuit of one’s purpose on the planet, one place to look for that purpose is within the things and issues about which one is emotional. What are the things that you would heal or fix about the world and its inhabitants if you had the power?
The emotion you feel about life’s unfairness—-that sense of despair that no one is doing anything about—-these are not simply random emotions that some feel, while others do not. They are more than just your personality. They are your gift. The unique and profound depth of emotion you feel about making the world a just and compassionate place is what makes you uniquely qualified to do something about it, and what will make you more effective at doing so.
Think about it. If there is a grand design, a purpose to your presence, then wouldn’t there also be some significance to the things that attract your attention? Wouldn’t there also be some purpose for your personality? Some point to your preferences? It would make sense, wouldn’t it? That if there is purpose to one, there is purpose to all? Consider.
“Not only that, but…”
As quiet as it is being kept, the world is evolving towards a higher state of vibration—a higher state of consciousness and spiritual awareness. Those who control the news, and who feed off the energy of negative, lower-level emotions won’t report it, but all around the planet, people are awakening to new ways of thought and new ways of being. The youth are awakening to the flaws of their parents’ generation. Societies are rejecting a misdirected capitalist imperative that sacrifices the beauty, and sustainability of the planet. Communities are rejecting multi-national corporations’ control of the seeds they need for growing their own crops. Villages are protesting government and corporate control of access to clean water. Individuals are asking different questions of themselves in the quest for meaning and survival. Protests and demonstrations against the old world order abound. The veil is being lifted. Again, you can’t find the evidence of this in mainstream media, but it is happening.
To assist in this global awakening and transformation, there are those who are choosing and/or are being sent to different places for the purpose of raising the vibrational energy across the planet.
Think about it like this. Say you had a pot of cold water on a stove, and you added to it a single drop of hot water. There would be a small, barely measurable, but definite increase in the temperature of that pot of cold water. Eventually, if you kept adding more and more drops of hot water, the overall temperature of the pot would increase. The energy of that single drop of hot water, and then each successive drop of hot water affects the overall energy and vibrational energy of the water in the pot. And so it is with YOUR presence in any community in which you reside. You may not be able to measure it at first, but your very presence in a relationship, in a family, in a group, in a community, in a village, in a city, in a country, and on the planet, affects the energy level of the whole. You are making a difference whether you realize it or not. There is a “butterfly effect*” that your thoughts and your actions have on the rest of the planet.
[And, to make that point specifically to my fellow vegan friend:] Even on a practical level, although your family members are still eating meat, when your mother goes to the market to shop for the family meal, there’ll be at the very least, one less piece of meat she buys for your place at the table; one less contribution to the overall suffering. Small, to be sure, but not insignificant. However, on a another level, the effect of your presence and thoughts is immeasurable. Consider how they have inspired me to write about this topic to reach many more people than were actually seated with us at our dinner a few days ago.
And butterflies, too
*butterfly effect: the idea, used in chaos theory, that a very small difference in the initial state of a physical system can make a significant difference to the state of that system at some later time [from the theory that a butterfly flapping its wings in one part of the world might create tiny changes in the atmosphere that ultimately alter the course of, prevent or cause a hurricane in another part of the world](sort of like a domino effect)
And so, the point is clear, my friend. Those who believe there must be more to our lives and our presence here, will forever be asking different types of questions of themselves and of those around them. And those who act upon and live their lives based on the answers they find, will forever be inspiring the rest of us, just as the butterflies do. There is purpose in your pain.
Inspired by Nancy Sy.
Note: That fateful dinner where I met Nancy that inspired today's article took place during my Jamaican In China Beijing Adventure.
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Send article suggestions, entrepreneur nominations and feedback about this article to firstname.lastname@example.org. Walt F.J. Goodridge is author of 16 books including Turn Your Passion Into Profit. Walt offers coaching and workshops to help people pursue and profit from their passions. Originally from the island of Jamaica, Walt has grown several successful businesses in the US, and now makes his home here on Saipan. To learn more, visit www.passionprofit.com and follow Walt on Twitter (whereiswalt)
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