Purpose 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, 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 from this your being expresses itself. 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 natural 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. His words come and meet you, right where you are. Even if you don’t fully grok the concept, you understand what he is pointing to. That is how I would define a natural teacher, someone who innately knows how to meet you where you are.
We all have unique wiring that gives us a natural fluency at something (usually in a few different somethings). For some people, their wiring 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 organic wiring that is actually totally easy and naturally joyous, no matter how quirky. These drives are a continuation of the ease and naturalness of your pure BEING.
#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 came online for you around the age of 10-12yrs.
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 from another culture and you were pressured to please your parents and you would bring shame to them if you adopted the manners of this new culture. So to appear grateful for their sacrifices, you always tend to doubt your authentic impulse, and you find it much easier to just please everyone instead. And so you think your quirkiness is how relaxing it feels to please people.
What I mean is there is a deeper organic impulse under your painful conditioning. That impulse is just a simple and effortless talent expressing itself in you. And none of us are without it. There, under all the ego and pain, is that deeper thing that, when expressed, just feels like pure joy!
What is your natural talent?
Maybe you spontaneously and joyously love to caregive and nursing others is organic and endlessly rejuvenating to you. Maybe you are a natural strategist and you can’t help but see the whole picture therefore it is easy for you to see more efficient pathways for a plan of execution. Maybe you are a natural stargazer and you find it effortless to dream possibilities and opportunities, and so your talent is an innovator, an inventor. Or maybe you are a maker and effortlessly you craft, and build and you always see possibilities for this. Maybe you are a natural marketer, you can just feel what selling is and what it isn’t. Maybe you are an artist and you can’t settle until something internal and deeper is being expressed. Perhaps you are a healer, you can feel the wounds of other people and for some mysterious reason you are called to bring help, or maybe you are a natural networker, or coordinator or systems analyst, and when you express this, no matter the circumstance, you are totally rejuvenated.
The question is, what would still be there, waiting to be utilized if there was no pressure to earn a wage, or desire help humanity, or internal pull to be someone special?
#2 There isn’t only “THE ONE”. Most of us have more than one calling
If we could let ourselves honor those organic wirings, I think we would notice there is actually more than one talent, and therefore, more than one purpose.
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, I was just as little, but I somehow heard them so easily. And organically it was rejuvenating and joyful to take that role. 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, sitting in a restaurant, or standing in line for a movie, I am always softly whispering to nearby parents what their child 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 even know it, I have translated to some parents what their two-month-old infant is saying. I hardly notice because it is just organically happening.
However, I also have a talent for exposing the deepest truth of what I am exploring. I can’t settle until I have dug down to the most fundamental truth of the matter. I can just smell it when something is not ultimately and fundamentally true. I also have a purpose to teach. And teaching about the deepest dimensions of human behavior patterns magically weaves all these spontaneous abilities together. My work brings me immense joy and constant rejuvenation. Somehow, by just listening to my being, life created the opportunity for all my callings to 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 schools 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.
Your organic wirings don’t deplete, even in terrible conditions. Amazing, but true. And a great signifier that you are out of alignment with your natural purpose is how depleted you are feeling.
#4 – 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.
So where does the confusion come in?
Well, let’s take the example of teaching. A strange assumption thrives in the spiritual world, an assumption that when a person wakes up to their original nature they should teach other people all about that awakening. And the real clincher is the lie implanted here, a lie that becoming a spiritual teacher is the only path for an awakened awareness.
You seek, you wake, you teach…
As if the world doesn’t need awakened lawyers, accountants, engineers, ranchers, and artists, etc.
Or with therapists, we have the wounded therapist archetype: people who need healing and need to be heard and find therapy so, so healing. Many people in this category mistakenly believe that is what inclines them to become good therapists. Their own blossoming in this environment leads to a mistaken assumption that they would be naturally fulfilled by offering therapy to others. The misconception is that hosting conversations about healing all day will be very healing. But the constant depletion and fatigue and conditional availability for most therapists would suggest 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! And those are 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 themselves.
#5 – 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.
We all have all been exposed to a lot of self-help 101, beginner level skils that pressurize some of our natural abilities into hiding. Anger and judgment are often condemned as purely ego and fear. The mainstream chant “forgiveness and kindness for all” make for a whack of confusion around appropriate boundaries.
Confusion abounds when we feel that our internal navigations are flawed. Fear and attachment often commandeer our internal clarity, 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 musician’s 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 happy being a Doctor.”
Or, “dancing is just a hobby!”
#6 – Your natural calling is your ticket to unconventional but unlimited growth
Nevertheless, everyone has 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 makes it interesting to watch endlessly manifesting 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 usually compute in our minds! Our minds want”Hard work”. And spotting the effortless, natural, and playful flow of your essence is challenging. It’s quieter, it is spontaneous, and it doesn’t require a whole lot of effort. And this is why we usually forget to invest in it – we’re waiting for the big effort, the big push! But your real purpose and your real passion is not going to be found like that. The good news is that you will find it by really just connecting with your essence.
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