0Purpose has a lot to do with our human incarnation. A drive to fully utilize all your natural talents and gifts. Really, the first purpose is your very incarnation.
Each moment, this creation of your personhood emerges out of the vast spaciousness, and that is driven by a divine expression. Originally, you were energy, light and pure space, yet a personhood within expresses itself, materializing into form. That in and of itself is a huge purpose: you simply BEING, before all the conditioning and fear that create ego even begin.
What is a calling?
A calling is the built-in software package. Your personhood emerges out of your unique wiring. Although difficult to describe, we can smell it in people. Some people are just natural teachers, and wired just perfectly for that profession.
I would put my friend and mentor Adyashanti in this category; one of the reasons he is so excellent at what he does is his wiring to teach. I project that he could teach a lot of different things if he wanted. Being Awakened does not incline a person to teach, but his personal wiring does. You can sense this about him because you don’t have to search his words for what they mean, you don’t have to find a way to meet him where he is speaking.
His being and his words come and meet you, right where you are. Even if you don’t really “get” the concept, you understand at the level you’re at. That is how I would define a natural teacher, someone who innately knows how to meet you where you are.
We all have a unique wiring that gives us a natural fluency, and what is awesome is that it’s usually in a few different areas. For some, their outlook is for a heavily strategic viewpoint. For others, their adventurous approach is key. For others, movement or music hums loudly in their bones.
Natural wiring is a phenomenon that we talk about all the time. Dancers will often tell you that even as children they saw the world through dance. When they closed their eyes and heard music, what they saw, more than heard, was the sounds being danced. They understand the world through this filter—they see things being danced. Painters can easily see the lines and shadows in a person’s face. CFOs and mathematicians have always loved counting. And on and on.
How to find your purpose and passion in life?
We all have a unique wiring that is actually totally easy and naturally joyous, no matter how quirky. These drives are not separate from the ease and naturalness of purely BEING they are a continuation.
#1 – What comes easy to you? What are your unique quirks?
Can you recall those funny little quirks you had, those things that you know you came out of the womb with? A signifier is that they really grounded for you around the age of 10-12.
I don’t mean those conditioned ones—like because your family was so chaotic and dysfunctional, you had to be responsible and take care of everyone, so today you tend to take on way too much responsibility for everyone’s emotional well being. Or your family were immigrants, so you had to be a doctor or you would bring shame to them and the sacrifices they made for you, and so you always tend to doubt yourself and find it much easier to just please everyone instead, and so your think your quirkiness is how relaxing it feels to please people.
What I mean is, if all that painful conditioning and fear burned out of your system today, there would be a deeper aspect of that same thing just simply expressing itself in you. Maybe you deeply feel the pain of other humans around you and nursing to their pain—that would still be there, wanting to be utilized. There, under all the ego and pain, is that deeper thing that, when expressed, just feels like pure joy!
#2 There isn’t “The ONE”. What other things do you enjoy? Most of us have more than one calling
If we could all feel those things, I think we would all notice that there is more than just one passion, and therefore, more than one purpose. We each have an abundance of them. For me, I have a very clear software package for being with children. I just really hear and see kids. In kindergarten, I was putting the other kids to sleep at nap time and helping them with snacks and snuggles. Being with kids brings me immense joy; there is a natural fluency and ease.
Today, I don’t work directly with kids. Yet if I’m walking on a trail or sitting in a restaurant or standing in line for a movie, I am always softly whispering to nearby parents what their toddler is saying or what their infant is actually asking for.
I don’t need certain conditions to be available to hear children, I don’t need to center in myself for my “gift”, it’s just always there, spilling out of me, moving effortlessly, and before I know it I have translated to the parents what their two-month-old infant is saying. It’s just what happens.
However, I also have a purpose to know and access the deeper source of life energy in each moment. I also have a purpose to teach. And teaching about this deeper dimension of life, practically, as it functions in our ordinary day-to-day. Immense joy and constant rejuvenation are the benefits I reap from this. Somehow, all those passions come together in my work, all my callings get utilized.
#3 – Notice the stuff you enjoy that doesn’t deplete your energy
My mother was also a teacher. Teaching was very clearly a purpose for her—teaching in the public school system gave her deep joy. Even when the conditions were extremely challenging, her energy did not deplete much. Her natural fluency easily overrode the challenges of a very under-funded, under-resourced public school system. And her capacity evolved and the continuum of these natural wirings grew over her career.
On the other hand, many teachers are entirely depleted at day’s end. The challenges of teaching in public school make them sick, drained, and less functional. These folks don’t have the wiring to teach children in a school setting, and as a result, become sick by the terrible conditions of our school systems.
#5 – Get out of your head and drop to your heart: Callings are not limited to martyrs
Therapists, environmental engineers, actors, healers, accountants, lawyers, public servants – you can be called to any of these. And those that are naturally wired to all sorts of professions.
So where does the confusion come in?
Well, let’s take the example of teaching. A strange assumption thrives that when a person wakes up to their original nature, they should teach other people all about awakening. That only this one path exists for them.
You seek, you wake, you teach…
As if the world doesn’t need awakened lawyers, accountants, engineers, ranchers, and artists!
Or with therapists, we have the wounded therapist archetype: people who need healing, and need to be heard. Many mistakenly believe these people to be naturally inclined to hearing others. Or conversations around healing all day will help heal them. But the constant depletion and fatigue and conditional availability for most therapists suggests otherwise.
I look at chefs and can’t even imagine those conditions being nourishing! On your feet 12-20 hours a day, in a hot kitchen, with all those smells! Chopping onions and garlic? And those being the least of the conditions! Yet, a natural chef thrives in this environment. Their love of food, textures, curiosity, and sense of adventure overrides the stresses of the environment. Instead of getting sick, depleted, and grumpy, their capacity evolves and grows and they innovate, contribute, and thrive in ways that surprise even them.
#7 – Your faults and flaws play a vital role
Your weaknesses really are your strengths – that is, once you incorporate them into your whole personality.
Take a very judgmental person. This person likely has a natural capacity for strategy. Burn all the wounding and painful parts down to the ground, all that fear and righteousness and injustice. A natural analyst remains with a joyous and very natural capacity for seeing the most efficient pathways. That natural strategist still lives within.
So much self-help 101 calls down shame on judgment and condemns it as purely ego and fear and toots the forgiveness cure-all! “Detox all judgment!” Makes for a whack of confusion, right?!
Confusion enters when we don’t listen to our internal navigation, and let fear and attachment commandeer. When fear says, “you don’t matter,” or “you’re not good enough.”
And then your culture or family or community says “being an artist is crap, you have to be a dentist to be safe and valuable and that is how you make me proud.”
Or, “being an Awakened teacher will make you special.”
Or, “you can’t live off a musicians salary, you can’t support a family, you will have to be a professor!“
Or, “spiritually evolved people don’t get angry or judge; you should be placid and peaceful if you want people to listen to you.“
Or, “your problem is that you should be more happy as a therapist.”
Or, “dancing is just a hobby!”
Huge pressure comes with this. Fear and Attachment cannot be understated as being huge and generationally entrenched inhibitors.
#8 – Your natural calling is your ticket to unconventional but unlimited growth
Nevertheless, everyone has a natural internal wiring, and everyone has a deep drive to be fully utilized, and every one of these deep callings emerges out of the pure silent stillness of being. And every one of these callings serve in miraculous ways. Gardening, cooking, preaching, managing, accounting, teaching, nursing, coordinating… they all serve. And perhaps the last piece of the purpose puzzle is this: when you are aligned with your purpose, you innovate, you thrive, and you surprise yourself at what is actually possible.
Your natural wiring is effortless and that is what will make it interesting to watch how it endlessly manifests in your life. This manifestation and the market and business that can be created around that will always be innovative and rather “out of the box”.
And here’s exactly why spotting our wiring is so tough. The organic and smooth flow doesn’t even compute in our minds! “Hard work” doesn’t come into play here which is why we usually forget to invest fully – we’re waiting for the trick! But it’s really just us connecting with our essence.
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