Life Purpose – Do You Have One?

What am I here? What is the purpose of my life? What contribution am I here to give to the world? These are the questions that haunt and plague the majority of people. It seems to be more important to many people than making money or even developing their spiritually.

Evidence that some people definitely did come into the world with a specific life purpose seems common. You have the Mozarts, Picassos and Beethovens; people who displayed incredible talent and passion for their famous vocations at impossibly early ages. They seemed targeted towards their goal from the start; endowed in their very genes with the genius talents for which they are now world-famous.

How could this be?… Doubtless, they programmed themselves with clear intent in previous lifetimes. Buddhism is a good analogy for this. Buddhist converts generally accept, even as they take their vows, that they are not really expecting to achieve Enlightenment in THIS lifetime. Rather, they are commencing a process that may take thousands, if not millions, of rebirths before their goal is achieved. They have set themselves a goal greater than the span of their own life, or of even many consecutive lifetimes.

That is how it may be with the geniuses of history. They come into incarnation seemingly tailor-made for their life’s work. This may be the result of honing honed their skills, and building their intent, lifetime after lifetime, until they finally achieved perfection in the incarnation for which they are famous. There are no accidents in the universe. Everything is the result of conscious intent.

Why do most of humanity wander through life questioning why we are taking up space here? How do you find what you were born to do, when it seems to be so concealed from you? Well, at the risk of disillusioning you, it seems worth asking you this fundamental question…

Why do you think that YOU were “born to do” anything in particular?!

What is my life purpose? I really wish I knew!…

The fact that you feel you are here for something does not necessarily imply that you are! You may also feel that you could run the world better than it is being run at present. However, just because you can feel it does not necessarily make it true! Beware of blindly accepting the wish-fulfilling self-help propaganda that says “you are here for something”.

You may be or you may not be. As we said, some people definitely are. However, it’s not necessarily true for everyone, and it may not be true for you. To say otherwise is to cash into ordinary people’s desperate need to feel significant and important whilst they continue to live their lives of quiet desperation.

The truth is that you may be causing yourself unnecessary anxiety by feeling that you are “here for something” when you are actually not. Actually, this should be good news to you. If you are one of the majority struggling to find that elusive life purpose, accept the possibility that you may not necessarily have been born with one, despite what all the new age and self-help books tell you. That liberates you from the erroneous notion that you have “lost” something or need to “recover” your direction. You may not have lost anything, since you cannot lose what you never had in the first place!

This is liberating news. You have NOT been wasting your life away far from your “true vocation”, because you probably never had one! However, that does NOT mean that you cannot DEVELOP a major life purpose from this moment onward! That is the good news. The even better news is that it is never too late.

Van Gogh suffered many hardships to fulfill his life purpose.

If you want a famous example, take the artist Van Gogh. He does not seem to have been born with a clear life purpose. After a series of failed jobs and much bitter frustration, he finally began drawing and painting only in his mid-twenties, and was destined to die by his own hand in his mid-thirties. Yet, in this brief decade or so, he elicited incredible talents from within: so much so that he transformed himself into one of the greatest artists in history, and accomplished an entire lifetime of work in just one short decade.

Accept that although you may not have been born with a life purpose, you can still create a purpose full of meaning and richness in the time available, i.e. right NOW, even if that time seems short to you. It may be neither easy nor obvious, but that should be part of the challenge and the calling. As soon as you let go of the handicapping notion that there is something SPECIFIC that you were sent here for, a world of possibilities opens up immediately.

Napoleon Hill stated that the key to success is having a definite major purpose, backed up with specific plans for its achievement. You can DECIDE to do that any time you wish, rather than pining over some mysterious and elusive purpose you think you were born with and may have missed at childhood. Seeking your life purpose is a process, rather than a once and for all event. It could take a lot of time, or it could happen very quickly. That depends upon your degree of resolve, determination and effort.

In other words, the speed with which you find a life purpose suitable to you is directly proportional to the time and effort, thought and passionate desire you invest into it. If it’s a spare-time activity, or a sort of “well, it would be nice someday once the kids are grown…” kind of thing, expect to wait a long time, and maybe never find it.

One oft-quoted and valid method is to work back to when you were a child and ask yourself what sort of things you enjoyed doing then. When people asked what you wanted to be when you grew up, what was your answer? As adults, we tend to limit our opportunities to what we consider “possible”. Children do not censor in this fashion (until they learn “better” from their parents!). Hence, seeking your childhood passions is a definite clue to where your future life direction may lie.

Another simple way is to consider your present life and ask yourself what it is that you really love to do now. What do you get caught up in, where you totally lose track of time, and forget to eat or sleep? What would you love to do all day long, even if there was no money involved? Questions like these can point the way to your deeper purpose in life. Be open and playful and flexible in this process.

Take your time, rather than being obsessed with the idea that time is running out on a preordained mission you have missed altogether. Remember, people are living ever longer these days. There is a fair chance you will live to be 100, or even 120 as medicine advances in the future. Hence, even if you are 40, 50, 60 or more, there is still plenty you can contribute and give to the world in the time you have left, for you have no idea how much time that will be.

In short, you ARE here for something as soon as you DECIDE to be. Then pick something and go with it, developing it to the best of your ability. Even if that does not turn out to be your best direction, it will open doors for you that never would have opened until you started moving. Eventually, through a strange and mysterious process, you will find yourself in your true life vocation. However, the key to getting there is movement, coupled with determination to reach it. Movement creates growth; stasis creates decay. So , start moving today.

Copyright Asoka Selvarajah. All Rights Reserved.

All News Is Not Good News

TV News Media – Destruction, Violence & Death!

If you have been watching the news recently, you are doubtless concerned, worried, and perhaps even frightened, by the terrible things going on. If you had been watching it last year, you would have been even more worried and frightened. Indeed, if you had been watching the news, five, ten or twenty years ago, you would almost certainly have had the same reaction.

The news, as brought to us by the media, is always predominantly bad. What little good news is presented is used almost like salt; to improve the flavor of the foul dish we have been served up.

The threat of impending war, the Middle East situation, roaming murderous pedophiles, floods and earthquakes. On and on and on it goes. Yet, is this really ALL that is going on in the world? Moreover, by paying so much attention to all of it, what are we doing to our own mental state?

My mother is a big watcher of the news. She follows every nuance of the Middle East situation, is concerned by what the Western powers are planning with their warlike remedies for Terrorism, knew every detail of the OJ Simpson trial, and so on. She sometimes confesses to being depressed and worried; perhaps because of all the bad things going on, and the helplessness she feels about it. My suggestion to her was simple. STOP watching it!

The news, as presented by the media, is not reality. It is not all that is going on. It is not even a small portion of what is happening. It is a carefully selected edit of reality, designed to sell newspapers and boost viewing figures. Bad news achieves all of this. Good news does not.

Here is a simple proof of this fact. Someone once started a newspaper that reported primarily good news. It went bust almost immediately. Hardly anybody bought it. It is a perverse quirk of human nature that people do not want good news. They want bad news. That is what they get, and the network ratings soar as a result. The more graphic and terrible the news, the more people will tune in to watch it. The more it can be incessantly churned with “expert analysis”, the more fascinated people get.

Is the world really this scary a place?…

Yet, what does this constant digest of misery do to us individually and as a society?

It adds to our anxiety, fear and general dis-ease with ourselves and the world we live in. We come to regard the world as a predominantly dangerous, violent and scary place. It can even cause us to become desensitized to the pain and suffering of others. When we are shown, for the thousandth time, the starving human faces from the third world, we might be tempted to flick over to “The Simpsons” or “Ally McBeal” instead. After all, they are more entertaining, are they not?

None of this implies that we go through life with blinkers on. It simply means that we need to be much more conscious of what we are allowing to shape our consciousness. For instance, only a fool would remain completely oblivious to the terrible happenings of 11th September 2001. However, that does not mean you have to become a world expert on the matter, or absorb the same images and analysis countless dozens of times.

Much of what gets reported is not really “news” at all. It may sound rather brutal to say this, but the fact is that most murders, rapes, pedophile assaults, and many forms of vehicle accident are not really “news”. Why? They have been happening since human beings first became sentient, and will continue to happen until the day we all cease to be. Hence, why exactly do these events constitute news, why do we all need to be informed about them as a nation, and why do they continue to morbidly fascinate us?

Moreover, it gets worse when we are obliged to hear about dire events in countries where we have no connection whatsoever. We learn all the gory details about coaches crashing, child murders, people burning to death etc., in countries halfway around the world from us! WHY? If we do tune in with morbid fascination, and then go off and do nothing whatsoever to assist, are we not engaging in a sort of international nosiness? Are we not merely being entertained? If you find this thought offensive, ask yourself: what are you doing with this information?… If the answer is nothing, I rest my case.

Personal development trainer, Brian Tracy, said that one of the the best time saving techniques is to stop watching and reading the news. If anything truly important happens, you will get to hear about it eventually.

Often, I did not know what was going on in the world. Yet, I did not find myself lacking anything. If it was a lack, it was a refreshing one, as I found it easier to be more focused on the present; on the now. As ever, if something really important happened, I would hear about it directly or indirectly. However, being relieved of the incessant nitty-gritty morbid fascinations of the world news media was truly a refreshing experience.

There IS a lot of good news going on too, but you and I are not getting to hear much of it. Hence, we have to find our own by (a) being critical of what we are receiving through the media, and firmly deciding how much of it we attend to; and (b) finding out own sources of good news, be it directly in our lives or through suitable alternative media, e.g. magazines and/or the internet.

Just as many parents censor the daily dosage of sex and violence their children are receiving on TV, we need to do that to ourselves as well!

Each of us has enough problems and anxieties in our own lives, and in our own country, without being incessantly exposed to things we can do little or nothing about. This is not intended as a “head in the sand” approach to life. However, we do not need all this tidal wave of negativity we are being force-fed, and would be better off without most of it. Ultimately, each of us is responsible for the state of mind we enjoy, the world we choose to live in as a result, and the mental food we consume in order to create both.

Copyright  Asoka Selvarajah. All Rights Reserved.

The Jigsaw – A Metaphor For Life

Recently, I felt impelled to buy myself a jigsaw puzzle. I haven’t done one since I was a small child, but when I saw them in a shop one day, a curious desire stayed with me until I eventually had to satisfy it.

Since there was no agenda to this exercise, such as completing the puzzle as quickly as possible, I decided to do it without looking much at the photo of the completed picture. Hence, I was going, for the most part, without a map. Instead, I was assPuzzle_2346 (9)_optembling the jigsaw one piece at a time. The only strategy I allowed myself was to initially search for all the edge pieces and assemble those first.

Apart from being a very calming meditative process (and highly recommended for that reason alone), I began to notice how this jigsaw puzzle was a very interesting metaphor.

Life is like a jigsaw, consisting of a very large number of colored pieces, and coming in all shapes and sizes. In fac
t, it begins with the very choice of which puzzle you’re going to buy at the shop. Many people believe that they were already given their specific jigsaw at birth, i.e. that they have a preordained “life purpose”. This may be true in some cases (Mozart, for example), but for most of us, we can choose which puzzle we are going to do.

In other words, you can determine your own life plan/purpose and then go about constructing it, piece by piece. If you don’t like the way the picture is turning out, you can always get yourself another puzzle and start on that one. You are not tied to any one life jigsaw, and you do not need to be perpetually agonizing over which jigsaw you were “meant” to be doing.

Assembling a jigsaw puzzle, and constantly looking at the photo of the completed picture, is analogous to goal-setting, where you set yourself a life goal, assemble all the disparate pieces needed to achieve it, and then go about building them together, while repeatedly keeping your eyes on the final visualized picture, in order to ensure that you are on target and that you are assembling and placing the pieces of your plan in the right place and order. Hence, this jigsaw exercise is an excellent mental training in persistence and patience within the context of goal setting. It can actually help develop mental endurance that you can use towards the task of achieving your goals.

Doing a jigsaw without looking at the plan is rather more like real life as we usually experience it. There IS an overall design and purpose, but there are MANY pieces – hundreds or even thousands – and your task is to make sense of seeming chaos. It often looks like chaos, and yet it is not. You may put some pieces in the wrong places initially, until you later realize that the overall pattern does not fit. Some areas, analogous to your natural talents, come together easier than others. Other areas elude you for ages, or you never seem to be able to find  the right pieces. You simply may not be looking to start on that piece of the puzzle at all. This may be in the area of your job, your relationships, your finances or whatever.

Yet, there ARE pieces that fit together in these areas too, and it’s for you to find and assemble them, each in its own place, to  create the overall pattern. As you do so, with perseverance and patience, the overall picture of the life you are designing slowly comes into view.

It’s often best to assemble several small areas at the same time, placing similarly colored pieces together in several heaps and then assembling them, rather than trying to do one single area all at once, in exclusion of all the other parts of the picture. If you take the latter approach, you’ll be forever trying to look for the one piece here or there that will attach to the mass you have already created. Moreover, you have no idea what that piece will look like and how it will connect what you have done to the overall plan. The entire process will become dependent upon you attaching pieces, once by one to the periphery of the mass you have already created.

The analogy is creating a balanced life versus overemphasis on one specific area of it. For instance, what is the point of massively over-developing your career if your relationships, family and health suffer as a result? What’s the point of being an expert on everything that’s happening in the latest TV soap opera if your job and finances are going down the drain?

We need to be working on all the key areas of our life at the some time to the best of our ability. You may not get it all right all at once, just as you cannot assemble all the areas of a jigsaw simultaneously. However, by taking the big picture approach, you ensure that you are building consistently towards the final picture. By contrast, if you achieve great success in one area to the exclusion of all others, it can be very difficult to later develop those weak areas, because your mind is so polarized on your one area of success. You have no references of success in other equally important areas.

One time, while my puzzle was lying incomplete, my cat leaped onto it, displacing the whole thing and sending some of it flying. It took me some time to restore it. This is also symbolic. We may well have a legitimate balanced pattern for our lives that we are working towards. However, the universe will still test it to see if we are really serious! You need to know that “stuff happens”, even when you are on the right track. You have to accept that as part of the story. Life is about meeting obstacles and overcoming them, and then moving on to the next challenge. You cannot play ostrich and bury your head in the sand. If you do, your life puzzle will never complete. Instead, over time, it will face ever more disruptions and eventually come apart altogether.

As you may have inferred by now, I would highly recommend you buy yourself a jigsaw puzzle (at least a thousand pieces) and go through this exercise for yourself! You may learn a lot about yourself and life too. It’s an excellent meditative practice, as long as you have no time objective on it, and take it one piece at a time. Keeping focused and contemplative is the key to success here, as it is in the larger puzzle of life. 

Uprooting The Tree Of Ignorance

Avidya - The Tree Of IgnoranceWhy do we fail to do the good that we know we should? Why do we fall below our own standards? Why do we try so hard to make progress in life and yet have little to really show for it?

In Yoga philosophy, the term Avidya is used to describe the condition that causes this tendency within us. It literally means “incorrect comprehension”; better known as ignorance. According to yoga teachings it is deeply rooted in our being through repeated habit.

We know that any behavior, when repeated often enough, becomes almost instinctive. This is true to such an extent that we can even believe such actions to be outside of our conscious control. The misuse of this “anchoring procedure” is the foundation of avidya.

Examples include unjustified angry reactions to other people, chronic dependencies like alcohol or drugs, or self-sabotage just when we are about to make a life-changing breakthrough in some important area. The subtle thing about avidya is that it hides itself. It only ever manifests as something else. Its symptoms are everywhere, but the cause itself remains concealed. We see it as “life”, or the other person’s fault, or some recurring self-destructive habit we can’t control. The source itself remains concealed.

Avidya is like a deeply rooted tree with four thick branches. The first branch is called Asmita, or ego. This is the part of us that seeks its own interests. It considers itself better than others, is bruised when it does not get its own way, and generally causes us to identify with this earthly body and the life it is living. It has no wider perspective than that.

The second branch is called Raga and is best translated as Desire or Attachment. This is the part that constantly wants what it does not have. It desires what it does not really need and seeks to accumulate merely for the sake of it. It makes us unsatisfied and causes us to continually compare ourselves unfavorably with others. If we are wealthy, we are unhappy because somebody else is wealthier still. And so on…

The third branch is called Dvesa or Refusal. This is like the recoil response. Whatever negative experiences we have had in life make us afraid of repeating them again in case the same result occurs. It can make us reject people, situations and possibilities that just might cause us pain again. In one person, it may be the fear of forming relationships with the opposite sex. In another, it may be a fear of public speaking as a result of negative childhood experiences.

The fourth and last branch on the tree of Avidya is called Abhinivesa or Fear. These are specifically fears that are NOT caused by previous experience. For example, we may fear change, or growing old, or that we may lose everything we worked so hard to earn. In other words, things we may never have experienced before.

Avidya, in all its subtle forms, works within us constantly to root us in our habitual ways and make improvement difficult or impossible. The more we indulge Avidya, the stronger it becomes. Eventually, we feel that we are no longer the doer of these things; they simply happen to us.

A person can attract one disastrous relationship after another, or continually experience uncontrollable rage under certain stimuli, and feel that it is nothing directly to do with them. It is just bad luck. The person fails to see that there is only one person responsible for everything that happens! So what can we do? If Avidya obscures and clouds, it clearly must be obscuring something. Yoga philosophy calls this something Purusa.

In the West, we know it as the “Higher Self” or “Silent Observer”; the true divine spirit that lies within each of us. The task therefore, is to bring Purusa out and live from it moment by moment. By doing this, we minimize the effects of the four forms of Avidya. A Spiritual Master is one who has completely uprooted the tree of Avidya forever and sees things as they really are. Thus, one of the names for the Buddha is “The Awakened One”.

How do we increasingly live from Purusa – the highest within us? The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali suggest three methods…

The first is actual practice of Yoga – both the physical postures and the breathing exercises. If this is something you feel comfortable with, it is definitely worth considering. There are many physical and mental benefits to be gained from a regular practice of Yoga, no matter how simple. However, be sure to consult your doctor before even contemplating such a regime, especially if you are over 40 and have never done it before. Yoga should only ever be learned in the beginning from a live teacher. Books are helpful as a supplement but should never replace live tuition. Regular Yoga does progressively diminish the force of Avidya in our lives.

The second method is through self-examination. Regular contemplation of our actions and habitual thought patterns will awaken us to take increasing responsibility for our lives. Meditation is one excellent method that can help. So too can keeping a Journal of our progress. Activities like these can break the habitual stimulus-response cycle , and place that moment of choice back in between the two. In other words, instead of responding automatically as we usually do, we can choose in that moment to act differently. We become increasingly conscious and responsible, instead of remaining creatures of habit.

The third method is to create a certain detachment to the actions of our life, and almost become an external observer. Rather than being an active participant, taking our hopes and dreams terribly seriously, we become more like an actor in a play, playing the part the best we can. This form of spiritual detachment does not mean we under-perform in life in any way. It merely means that we become more detached and objective about the movement of our lives; less elated when things go right and less distraught when disaster occurs. In this way the ego, and indeed all aspects of Avidya, are progressively weakened.

In truth, all three methods work best together. However, one or other approach can prove immensely beneficial. For most of us, Avidya will remain to some extent throughout our lives. However, the more we can live from the true spirit within, the Purusa, the more authentically we live our lives. We relate to others better, make better decisions, and the hold of ignorance upon our lives gradually diminishes. We become the best person we can possibly be and thereby benefit the world. Surely that is the goal of life ?

Using A Journal For Personal Development

A great man once said that a life worth living is a life worth recording. With this truth in mind, let us examine the time-honored method of keeping a Journal as a powerful tool for self-improvement.Journaling For Personal Development

Firstly, understand that a Journal is not a diary. Although the line is definitely blurred, a diary largely deals with externals. A Journal is about your inner being. It is actively used as a tool for self-improvement, as opposed to passively recording events.

The benefits of keeping a Journal are that through doing so, you monitor your own internal processes. It can be used to integrate psychological parts within yourself that have long remained in conflict. A Journal can help you see the changing cycles within your life – processes that only become evident when rigorous self-examination is used. It helps you to remember your dreams, and begin to understand and gain insight from them. Most importantly, the keeping of a Journal puts you ever closer in touch with the Higher Self – the highest part of you responsible for creativity, wisdom and for orchestrating the events of your life.

In short, keeping a Journal turns your life from a seemingly random succession of events into a well-defined school. You begin to see the lessons in your life and put them into practice.

What is the best procedure? There are many, and it is really a very in-depth subject. In this short discussion, we shall examine a few ideas to get you on the road of at least starting a Journal and thereby experiencing immediate benefits.

The first step is to physically get yourself a suitable Journal. This should ideally be an A4 book with either lined or unlined paper. Don’t get a diary as you will not be doing a “day to a page” or anything like that. However, the book you buy should ideally have section dividers of some sort.

Alternatively, you can buy a file folder, corresponding pad of paper, and a set of dividers. Use the dividers to create different sections in your Journal.

The first section you should keep is the Daily Log. Here, you make brief entries during the day, preferably immediately after the event. In this section, you record any internal events that you deem of importance. Emotions, reactions, thoughts, realizations, interactions with people or situations, and the internal effects they had upon you. If there was an external trigger, you record just enough of it to make sense of the entry. The key here is brevity.

Even though your outer life may be relatively uneventful from one day to the next, you will soon find that your inner life is alive and rich and full of happenings. As you do this over time, more insights will begin to occur. For instance, you will start to perceive the triggers that cause your behavior.

You will become increasingly aware of how you handle yourself and how you could do better. You will become less “automatic” and more conscious of your choices in each and every situation.

Another section you should keep is a dream journal. Here you record any impressions, fragments or complete dreams that you recall. If you do not normally remember dreams, this procedure will help stimulate recall. Keep the Journal by your bed and record anything that you remember. Better still, tell yourself before you sleep that you will remember your dreams. If you still don’t remember anything, consider setting an alarm clock at some point in the night, and write down whatever you recall as soon as you awaken. If the answer is nothing, reset the alarm clock!

Dreams are one place where your intuitive, creative self – which can only speak in images – seeks to establish communication with you. Thus by making this effort, you begin to come into conscious communion with parts of yourself that transcend your normal conscious intelligence.

The next section is where you ask questions that you need answers to. These can relate to any area of your life whatsoever – relationships, spirituality, work, creativity, and so on. Actually, you are asking your Higher Self for the answers.

Write your entry here in the form of a question. Date it and leave it. Then pay attention to your dreams, the events of the day, and your own internal insights and thought processes. The various parts of the Journal fit beautifully together to give you the answers you seek. Expect an answer and it will come.

If nothing happens, simply repeat the process the next day with the same question! Be insistent. The answer will eventually appear.

The final section of the Journal that we will talk about is the Life Cycles section. You review your life and try to describe it in terms of the big cycles that you have experienced. It may have been a relationship cycle, an employment/career cycle, a cycle of religious affiliation. It differs for each person. Ponder your life and recognize the major cycles. For example, it may be your ten-year marriage,
your six year career with XYZ Corp., your troubled teenage years, etc. Within each major cycle, write the main events that made it up as a series of brief entries. If you do this properly, you should also be able to identify minor cycles within the major. Do this also for the current cycle that you are living in right now.

Of course, many different cycles overlap each other in our lives. The point is simply to begin to get a perspective on the major movements within our lives that have brought us to where we are today.

Being able to see the large cycles and sub-cycles helps you to achieve a much expanded consciousness and context for your life. You see how the events of life seem orchestrated – as indeed they are – to lead you to learn many lessons and gain profound realizations. You begin to realize where you failed to learn the lesson, and therefore had to experience it all over again in another time and place until it finally sank in.

In short, you gain perspective. In doing so, you become more empowered to lay out a grander vision for your future.

There is one final and important point. Your Journal is private. Therefore, say what you wish openly and do not censor yourself. This is the one place where you can speak freely so give yourself that blessing. At the same time, keep the Journal in a safe place where it will not be available to prying eyes!

This has been a whirlwind introduction to the benefits of the Journal, although a lot has been covered. Doubtless, other possible sections lend themselves to your imagination, as indeed should be the case. The Journal is YOUR personal tool for self-growth and should thus arise out of your needs and aspirations. If you want to study the subject in greater depth, there are plenty of resources available on the subject.

However, the important thing is just to get started and experience the benefits NOW. You have enough ideas here to create a deeply enriching life tool for yourself.

May it bring you many tender insights and blessings.

Money & Spirituality – Do They Mix?

Money causes most people more emotional problems than almost any other life issue. How many times have you heard that “Money doesn’t grow on trees”, that “Money is the root of all Evil” or that anyone who is rich must, by definition, be either a crook or extremely hard and tough?Do Money & Spirituality Mix?

Most people have extremely negative associations about wealth and money that were gained subconsciously whilst growing up. The world’s spiritual traditions seem to be in agreement:

“No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” Matthew 6:24

Other world religions say much the same. Buddhism certainly sees earthly wealth as a source of desire and attachment; both of which are viewed as detrimental to spiritual growth. Yet, most personal development teachers today tell you that you can “have it all” and extol the virtues of becoming wealthy. Moreover, it seems to be a very modern version of spirituality that says you can be rich AND highly spiritual.

So who is right?

Within a strictly limited sense, both are correct. However, the balance is extremely hard to maintain correctly. Given that the Universe and the Source that created it are infinitely abundant, it is entirely correct that you should expect to be similarly abundant in your life. You have a right to wholesome expansion and wealth. Poverty is not intrinsic within creation – rather it is created by Man himself!

However, there is a big problem, and this is what the teaching from Jesus above highlights perfectly. It is the problem of focus. Whatever we focus our minds upon, for good or ill, always expands. This is one of the fundamental laws of life. No matter what anyone tells you to the contrary, making money is hard. It does not come easy to most people. Moreover, making a lot of money is very hard and takes a tremendous level of concentrated focus. It also requires a commitment that is primarily external, i.e. devoted to the outer material world.

Herein lies the apparent conflict. The truth is that powerful spiritual development ALSO requires a tremendous level of focus and commitment. It is not a part-time activity either. Moreover, the focus is primarily internal.

If you now read the verse from Jesus again, you will receive a fresh perspective. It is not that money is intrinsically evil: rather, the accumulation of it, for someone with limited years on this earth, is a major distraction because of the level of focus it requires. Whatever you focus upon expands. If you set your mind upon the external world, this will assume increasing importance in your life.

Spiritual growth will increasingly become a hobby or something to be crammed into your spare time. If you vigorously dispute this, ask yourself the following questions:

(1) Do you make sure you get three full meals a day?

(2) Do you also make sure that you meditate (or pray) three times a day for the same amount of time?

Do you see the point and the problem?…

Whatever is most important to you is what you spend most of your time doing and thinking about. This is why most spiritual traditions advise against the external focus which the pursuit of material wealth entails. The Spiritual Masters know human nature too well. They know that given half a chance, we will veer off the path and go off chasing soap bubbles.

Happily, there can be a satisfactory resolution to this. The answer is twofold. The first principle is that if you make the spiritual path (and this does NOT mean exclusively the Christian path) your primary focus, then you will eventually master laws of the universe that will ensure your abundance forever. Moreover, abundance here is interpreted in the widest possible way, as well as many ways that we can’t conceive of with finite minds!

If you can truly tune yourself to the ultimate Source of all abundance in the universe, then how can you remain poor in any sense?! This is what Jesus had in mind when he said:

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness: and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33

In other words, bring your finite Mind and Being increasingly in tune with the Source of infinite abundance, and you cannot help but manifest abundance too. Moreover, you will do it with ease, at will, and to a greater level than you ever believed possible for yourself and others. If the universe is infinitely creative, then you can be too once you are in tune with the spiritual laws by which the universe functions.

The second principle – also implicit in the verse above – is to decide from the outset what your true life purpose and hence priority is. Then determine never to let that balance between spiritual commitment and external effort be undermined. When we work upon an external goal – particularly financial abundance – it is very easy to allow that goal to consume an increasing amount of time and mental capacity. Decide from the outset that you are going to focus upon the process of being excellent in the field of endeavor that is your life’s purpose. Then pursue it with the intention of being the very best you can be, rather than focusing primarily upon some monetary result/goal at the end of the process.

You can certainly have a monetary goal. However, just be aware of the danger of letting this becoming the primary obsession. Don’t ever let it happen. Also, always continually re-assess the balance and level of commitment between your externally focused activities and your spiritual goals. Never let that balance slip.

In conclusion, it is possible to be financially abundant whilst following a spiritual path. However, it is very difficult – much more so than most personal development gurus would have you believe. It is for this reason that the great Spiritual Masters strongly discouraged trying to do both.

However , by using the two principles mentioned here from the outset, it is possible to create abundance in your life in the widest
possible sense of the word.

Crown Chakra Chant And Feel The Energy

A very crown chakra meditation.

Name: Primary Email: