People say that what we’re all seeking is a meaning for life. I don’t think that’s what we’re really seeking. I think that what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive.
— Joseph Campbell
Aliveness 101. How do you live before you die?
How do you rise above the ordinary waters of quiet desperation that keep pulling you to the bottom of this empty ocean, like an old submarine, sinking in memories, filled with all the words that compose the complicated story of you?
How do you surf through this life, this unreasonable, unrepeatable life — not just when the waves are in your favor, but by the day and hour and minute… with sharks and dolphins alike…
Saving a life once is okay. If someone sees you and with good publicity, you get a medal. And if you are the saved one, you get another shot. So thank you, doctors. Works for me.
But saving someone every day, saving my Self from Me and You from Self, that is the burning issue, and even if we don’t get out of here alive, this might be worth a million years.
As I was swimming in my daily cup of tea, Aliveness knocked, and made me wonder:
How do you go beyond the occasional fish and teach a human how to fish? If I had to bring The Art of Being Alive down to 2 daily life shots in your veins, what would I do for you? What would I want you to do for me? How can we set each other free, for free? Live fully, madly, deeply… isn’t that the whole point of this human experience?
Like every story ever written, it must begin with Love. Let’s assume we all know that love is the only state of being that can profoundly save, heal and alter a life for the better. It’s our essence, oxygen and lifesaver; the point, the core, the it, the absolution.
But how do you apply this love to others on a general everyday level — aside from the more exclusive ways and scenarios in which you can love one person or a special few?
How do we get to the bottom of it (Love) — give me something real. Something that can be practiced — given and received — by anyone, regardless of our circumstances, education, abilities, condition, looks & brains, thoughts & feelings, evolution & revolution.
That’s it. I’m going universal.
Here are 2 life-giving gifts I have for and I need from you — just because we share the planet together. (My birthday is every day.)
TO SAVE A LIFE
– Prep time: from 1 minute to 1 million years.
– Ingredients: You & Me & (optional) a Cup of Herbal Tea.
– Serves at least 2 hungry people.
1. Inspire me.
You can’t change anyone. It doesn’t matter how reasonable or how “right” you think you are or how much “better” someone’s life would be if they “just listened.” You don’t own the truth, the truth owns you — and you are just one tiny human in a universe full of wonder and infinite variety. The only option you have is to become alive yourself and let it spread like a virus and infect who it may.
The irony we’ve been brainwashed with and the very pillars on which our systems are built practice the exact opposite. They hack at the leaves instead of striking at the root. And the only root you’ll ever be able to reach is your own.
It’s 1st grade math and a natural law all other creatures in nature seem to follow (except most humans). You can’t make someone else be you or do what you would do or what you want them to do. You can only inspire them to be more like themselves.
The more yourself you become and the closer you get to living from your truest essence, the more you can see and understand another. This short beautiful puzzling equation we call “life” cannot be experienced at its fullest through anyone else’s glasses, but your own.
We are the paradigms through which we see and feel and know it all. So the truer, kinder and deeper we go within ourselves, the more and better we can affect others on their own journey.
The world without spirit is a wasteland. People have the notion of saving the world by shifting things around, changing the rules, and who’s on top, and so forth. No, no! Any world is a valid world if it’s alive. The thing to do is to bring life to it, and the only way to do that is to find in your own case where the life is and become alive yourself.
It’s a liberating aha, this truth. It honors our individuality and our free will.
No one can get inside your head, no one can impose themselves on you, no one can ever force you to believe or feel or think or accept or anything, anyone. No matter what they give or do or try, no one can separate you from your core. No one will ever take your heart without permission. It’s the only piece of you that can’t be stolen or forced or bought, but only given — for free and for love (of any kind).
They can convince you, but never convert you unless your heart itself is willing. And the heart can only be willing when it touches truth (her truth) and falls in love. There is no other way.
So how do you make someone fall in love — with their truth and their life (or anything else for that matter)? You don’t. You can’t. You can only inspire them to fall in love with themselves. And in that higher paradigm where life and people are enjoyed for what they are and not for what they give or do, all things are possible and everything that must align, aligns.
Love is the only force in the universe that doesn’t have a specific purpose, a “Why” or a “For.” It happens just “because.” And inspiration is the magic wand you need to summon it.
Grandpa Campbell on the phone again,
We’re not on our journey to save the world but to save ourselves. But in doing that you save the world. The influence of a vital person vitalizes.
2. Believe in me.
This is the second most empowering act, after inspiring someone. Belief strengthens the will awakened by inspiration and it makes space for creativity.
There is a common misunderstanding about this Act of Faith or Belief. You think you have to find some proof of life before you believe. You can’t take a shot in the dark. You think that proof will give you some reassurance, some security, however small — you need to see stuff, hear it, smell it, touch it, taste it first. You rely on your senses.
But haven’t you been cheated enough by your senses already? Haven’t you seen even the most “secure” situations, the most “trustworthy” people (starting with yourself), falter, trip, shake and fall? Nothing is solid. Everything moves, all the time. Our entire planet and whole universe is transitory.
So no, you don’t need to see in order to believe. It’s just the other way around. Faith is precisely the on/off button of your power to create. You believe in what your heart is drawn to. You do that first. And then, you see what happens. Believing activates your creative superpowers, which bring the very idea wished for into the realm of the senses.
Poor senses, all they do is just take orders given by our perception. And only 3-4% of our perception operates from our conscious brain. To put it in perspective — our cosmic super computer genius brain processes about 400 billion bits of sensory information per second. Only 2,000 bits of those 400 billion are brought to your awareness — the rest of information “doesn’t exist” for you. And guess what this selection is filtered by — YOUR FOCUS AND YOUR EXPECTATIONS. You literally create what you focus on.
Can faith move mountains then?
When you believe in someone (starting with yourself), you give that human permission to become. You unleash the genie locked in their bottle. You hold space so they can see their truth in your mirror, realize that they are, oh-so-very-possible, so they can go and get their life back in their own veins.
In acknowledging their dreams and their truth, you give them the power to turn them into fact. Do you realize how much this is worth?
Like someone (who’s name doesn’t come up in my Google search) put it:
And now, let’s play a life game, you and I, because what else is there to do?
Let’s practice these 2 truths and save one person a day for the next 10 days. This is Our Life. What better way to live it than by living?
HOW-TO, YOU ASK?
2 GAME RULES:
Step 1 — Inspire Someone:
But always start with You (remember, You’re the Way). Draft a list of 10 things (passions, talents, activities) that bring you back to life, and which demand the full use of your creative superpowers, make your heart burst into sudden inexplicable laughter and jump like the 5-year old you still are somewhere under all that baggage.
Operation Aliveness requires you to set aside at least 30 minutes every day — preferably as soon as you wake up — and do one of the things on your list (or more). Don’t say you don’t have time for this. It’s like saying you don’t have time to eat or sleep or go to the bathroom or shower. If you agreed to this life, time is all you have.
Let that creative energy pour out of you and be released into the atmosphere. Viruses transmitted via the heart are faster to spread and catch than anything. Forget blood or air transmission. That’s so last century. Creativity is the new pandemic.
Step 2 — Believe in Someone:
Tell them and show them. Telling, in this case, is another way of showing. But start with showing yourself.
Write down 10 creative truths about yourself (or affirmations, whatever works for you). Write them in present tense. Don’t be embarrassed to admit and talk about your greatness or high expectations. No one will read this, but you. Write them in your journal, your forearm, your bathroom mirror, your board, your lover’s back… anywhere that will help you see it first thing in the morning.
If you are out of ideas, take or tweak one:
I am an extraordinary human, filled with lust for life and infinite possibilities. I am creative, conscious and authentic. I like myself and I am capable of accepting and evolving through the parts I don’t like. I am unique, unrepeatable, relevant, and I have a hell of a story to tell. Nobody tells me what can or can’t be done. I set my own limits. I am kind and compassionate, true to myself and worthy. I am a crooked, beautiful, straight line.
Declare your freedom in your own words. Read your truths out loud if you can. The more embarrassed you are to think and say these things about yourself, the truer they are and the more you need to repeat and internalize them. If you feel your heart shrink with disbelief, keep saying them over and over and over again like a broken (mended) record, until that beating beast gets warm.
And then pay this forward to at least one more person every day. Remind someone that they matter. Remind them that they have what it takes, that you believe in them. It only takes 5 minutes or less.
Remember that “believing” is not based on a scientifically verified truth but on hope.
So believe in what you don’t see, in order to then bring it into existence. Believe in people before they prove to you they are worthy. Believe in them to make them worthy of more trust.
As Mr. Hemingway would have it,
This is so hard my heart is sore just from writing about it. But I’ll be damned if I stop.
THE HEART OF CREATION
As you practice this, you slowly start to realize that there is only one life. One world, one person, one constellation, one love, one truth through which, if saved, all other worlds and truths you touch will come alive. You are creating this world everyday from the office of your mind, the confines of your body, at the rhythm of your heart, and your creation affects and shapes the world at large.
This creativity is your birthright — a special app that comes with your original software that can only be downloaded through Inspiration and activated by Belief. Inspiration wakes you up. Faith (in yourself and others) fuels you. Creativity then helps you turn your potential into fact and guides you on your inward journey back to You.
It’s only from that deep, subterranean, endless river that you can reach and touch and save a life.
SALVATION 101. YOU IN?
*Featured Image: Bigstock.