Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Great Mandala

There's been a recurring theme in the conversations I've had lately, as well as in posts I've read by other bloggers. The theme is, why do we do what we do without questioning it? We go to work because that's what we were told to do. We hold to religious dogmas and political leanings because that's what we were told to believe. We behave a certain way because that's how we were told to behave.

As children, we learned from everyone and everything around us. Good or bad, stuff stuck - and some of it adhered with all the force of super glue - and we never questioned. We simply took it all as "how it is" and wandered through life with a basketful of someone else's ideals.

My friend Timothy put it best the other day. "You know, I grew up learning that you put your head down, work your ass off for 40 hours a week, get the house, the car, the stuff and call it a good life. What a crock of shit! It's just stuff, and in the end it isn't what's important. Why did I do it for so many years? Why did it take me so long to wake up?!"

There's no easy answer to that, but it really is a lot like sleep. Some of us wake up early, some of us sleep in. Some people can jump out of bed and hold an intelligent conversation before the sleep is out of their eyes, and then there are some of us who aren't even capable of "good morning" until we've showered and swallowed a cup of bean. The important thing is that we do wake up.

We can shake the sleep off and begin a brand new day. Each new day is full of its own promise. The promise is, we get to do whatever we want to do. No, I'm not saying shirk responsibility. I'm saying we can look at our dreams and take appropriate steps toward them. Just because something got written on our psyches long ago doesn't mean it's written in stone. We are the authors of our own lives and we have the authority to rewrite the rules as we see fit. We don't need to accept stuff just because it's what we've heard for so long.

It's now been two years since I was laid off. Honestly, I've never been happier. While I don't recommend getting laid off as a means to jump starting your dream career (kind of like recommending the flu to jump start your diet - it ain't pretty), I do recommend seeing and seizing opportunities. I recommend being creative in how you want to live your life. Do you really want to live in a square grid where everything fits just ever so perfectly and never moves? Or would you you rather live in a mandala where everything flows and progresses toward an ever deepening wholeness?

Wake up, friends... open your eyes... your dream is waiting.


  1. Aw, shucks... thank you. (She says as internally she does the Sally Fields Academy Award gush.)

  2. i missed this, i don't know, but i'm so glad i found it now. i couldn't agree more.


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