Friday, May 29, 2009
enCouragingBliss: What Would You Sacrifice?
In this American culture, we are raised to believe that we can have anything and everything we could ever dream of. The wider culture tells us that there is nothing we can't have if we want it badly enough. There is nothing that is beyond our reach.
Our reach extends far: These beliefs are spreading over the globe like a poison.
Unchecked desire leads to obesity of the body, mind, and spirit.
Our planet, our children, we are all paying for this.
One of the ways that this is all too apparent is how "busy" we all are. Most people wear this "busy" like a badge of honor, not realizing that they -- that we -- become less and less human in the process.
We are tired; we are worn out; we are angry; we are shallowly connected to one another, to community, to this Earth.
We carry around our entitlement wherever we go. Americans want more and they want it faster, bigger, brighter, and better -- to the point of creating wars over resources.
On an individual level, this endless desire for more in our material lives shows up in a seeming inability to say no, to slow down, to do what we love rather than do something that gets us good pay checks, to create deep and meaningful love.
Then we sit around and complain about being busy, about not having any joy, about not living our bliss.
So we read books about time management when the real issue is about gluttony.
The lie: we can have and do everything.
The truth: we cannot. We can if we want it all half-assed, if we want to get to the end of our lives not having realized we were living, if we want quantity over quality.
For this week, let's think about what we really want our lives to look like.
If we really want to be writers, if we really want to be artists, if we really want to not be married to mind-numbing, soul-killing jobs, if we really want to be surrounded by best friends, if we really want beauty and peace and calm and laughter, if we really want to be able to go to the beach in the middle of the week...
Then we must cut back. We must pick.
With discernment and maturity, we come to know what we need rather than what we want.
And once we know what our true needs are, we are then willing to make sacrifices for them.
Some people don't like this word "sacrifice," and I think it is just another symptom indicative of our soul sickness.
Sacrifice is simply a sacred and holy choosing.
As James Barrie said:
Dreams do come true, if we only wish hard enough, you can have anything in life if you will sacrifice everything else for it.
So that's the question for enCouragingBliss:
What do you want? What do you really need? What would make your soul burst into the flower, into the universe that it was born to be?
And what are you willing to sacrifice to get there?