To follow your bliss is to identify that pursuit which you are truly passionate about and give yourself absolutely to it. In so doing, you will find your fullest potential and serve yourself and your community to the greatest possible extent. - Joseph Campbell
I remember a middle aged man who came to one of my workshops. He was reserved and serious looking, the type that finds it difficult to smile - that is, until we came to the "follow your bliss" exercise. The exercise involved answering the following questions:
If you had unlimited time and money, what things would you love to do?
What really lights your fire?
Suddenly the man became animated. As he shared his dream of riding a Harley Davidson motorcycle across Asia, his energy visibly expanded, his whole demeanor changed and the tension left his body. As he continued to share his passion, I thought he was going to burst with excitement! He was grinning like a little boy!
If this is the effect that simply talking about following your
bliss has, then imagine the power of actually doing it? Imagine the joy you could experience if you allowed your heart to run the show.
I said to the man "So, lets go plan your trip. Maybe we can go together to a travel agent after the class and book a ticket."
He looked back at me, horrified. "I can't " he said. His radiant aura collapsed and he looked serious again.
"Why not" I asked.
"I.... I ... just.... can't" He then reeled off a load of reasons why he couldn't, which are not important to go into here.
It is amazing how we shrink back in fear when confronted with the
real possibility of breaking through our fears and really going for what we want in life.
We settle for so little. Playing safe, playing small, we
cling tenaciously to the familiar, the safe and forget we are children
of the stars.
Each one of us have our own wonderful God-given gifts to share with the world. When you follow your bliss, you offer the world the greatest gift of all - the example of your own life working. Find your greatest passion and follow it with all your heart. The mind will try to convince you it won't work. Don't listen!
“Our deepest fear is not that we
are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask
ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing
small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about
shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are
all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the
glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in
everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other
people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own
fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” - Marianne Williamson
The mind is fear based and needs to feel in control. Uncertainty and the the unknown make the mind squirm. To follow your bliss requires stepping boldly into unfamiliar territory and being willing to trust. I recently shared with my teacher that I haven't a clue about ANYTHING any more. He said "Neither do I. It;s great isn't it!"
We are not in charge of our lives. There is a higher power that has a
perfect plan for each of us. When you follow your bliss, you flow with,
rather than against the current of life. Your heart is the infallible
compass which is there to guide you. If the next step feels uplifting
and expansive, go for it. If it feels contracting, don't. I have
learned that this is the most simple and joyful way to live.
Do you know the feeling when you are standing on the top diving board at the swimming pool. As you peer over the edge it seems so high and terrifying. At the same time, however , every fibre of your being is tingling with aliveness. This is how life is meant to be lived!
feel the fear and do it anyway IS to follow your bliss. When you have no
idea what is going to happen next, it keeps your life vibrant and
alive. I have never once not had all my needs met, and they have often
been met in ways that the mind could never have imagined.
A good friend of mine felt a strong desire to attend a six month
meditation retreat. She didn't have a clue where the money was going to
come from. She paid the deposit on trust and the next day she won a car
in a competition she hadn't even entered! When you are bold and follow
your bliss, miracles happen!
We are afraid of surrendering to a power higher than ourselves
and living like a leaf in the wind. And yet, until we are prepared to do
this, joy and bliss will forever remain out of reach. To follow your
bliss, you must be willing to give up control and to allow your world to
fall apart, IF need be.
We need to realise that there is a greater power taking care of everything and that it is safe to release the iron grip we keep over our affairs. All we need to do is relax and follow what feels expansive and joyful in every moment. The mind is incapable of experiencing freedom. It will always try to convince you to play it safe and to avoid risk.
I am not suggesting, of course, that everyone should quit their
job, abandon their family and head off tomorrow for the Himalayas. Of
course there are also practicalities to deal with. It is possible to
start in small ways.
What have you been putting off? How about starting a dance class? Learning Chinese? Learning to meditate?
Think of one scary thing that you have been avoiding doing and make a definite commitment to do it within the next 24 hours.