Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Follow Your Bliss

"If you follow your bliss, you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. When you can see that, you begin to meet people who are in your field of bliss, and they open doors to you. I say, follow your bliss and don't be afraid, and doors will open where you didn't know they were going to be." ~ Joseph Campbell

“Always, always, always, always, always, always, always do the thing you fear and the death of fear is certain.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Michelle Lombardo, actress on the excellent QUARTERLIFE series (see Link, but be careful... watch a few episodes and you'll be in love with all the characters and have to watch all 29 --to date-- episodes) says in her blog, "Our generation... you know, all of us.. are at this point right now where we can really change what's going on right now in the world... " I wish her all the best, but at my age this is about the fifth generation I've heard say that. From JFK's Camelot and the Flower Children to today. The world hasn't changed much, except technologically.

We still betray everything our dreams and our stories tell us. We teach children not to resolve conflicts with fighting, but when we are attacked, our leaders respond immediately with war. (Yes, 9-11 was a horrible act - but if our values don't hold up under stress they are utterly useless!) The rich still trample the rest of us in their singleminded drive for power, control and short term profit. We still waste the planet and ignore how that will affect us all.
(Well, our government is not ignoring climate change. The Pentagon has detailed plans for fighting over the last remaining resources. Nothing about preventing climate change, or working with other nations if worse comes to worst, just war as usual. Even the Klingons are smarter than that: "Only a fool fights in a burning house.")

The difference this time is that we may be one of the last few generations who still have a chance to change. It may be too late to reverse the damage to the environment or avert nuclear disaster or stop endless war once it gets rolling.

The blog has been missing for a couple weeks because I've been re-evaluating my life. I'm tired of working for minimal pay so that corporations can make money. I've probably reached a phase Indian philosophy calls Serving.
There are four stages in life. Learning, Earning, Serving and Seeking. Serving is about using what you've learned and earned to make you family comfortable and secure. Not just your blood family, but the world family.
I'm looking for a job that will allow me to serve or help people in some measure. Maybe even something that will help turn the tide of the world's rush toward self-destruction.I was not too good with the Earning part so I'd like it to pay the rent as well. Anybody knows of such activist employment, I'm open to suggestions.

I'm not happy with what I'm doing right now, but it's scary to quit a job that is keeping a roof over my head. Of course the only way to deal with that is to follow the advice of Goethe:

"Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it."

And, of course, Yoda said, "Do or do not. There is no try."

I think there's a measure of the fourth stage at work, too. Seeking, Samadhi, is about understanding yourself. Finding out what I am all about, what my part is in the big Mystery.
Robert A Heinlein's immortal man Lazarus Long wrote, "If tempted by something that feels "altruistic," examine your motives and root out that self-deception. Then, if you still want to do it, wallow in it! "

Maybe I just have a repressed desire to be a superhero.

The character in the image is Maggie (Magdelena Marie Neuntauben, superhero name Veda, forms humanoids out of solid earth to do her bidding) in a comic book called THE ORDER. She's talking about how helping individual children is the real way to save the world.

BABYLON 5 had a recurring theme about two questions we ask ourselves. "Who are you?" and "What do you want?" What was important was the order in which you asked those questions. If "What do you want?" comes first, you will never find answers. If "Who are you?" comes first, everything else including the answer to the second question, will come naturally.

There's another Indian saying that goes:

"The path we choose is who we are."

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