"Oh Lord, I'm still not sure what I stand for, oh
What do I stand for? What do I stand for?
Most nights, I don't know anymore..."
["Some Nights" by Fun.]
When was the last time you looked yourself in the mirror and asked why you're alive? Jesus fuck, people. Are we living on purpose or are we simply reacting to a neverending barrage of urgencies? No one is stopping us from living an unconscious life, playing victim to all the demands and requirements of a needy world. Sleepwalk if you want to, just don't expect to ever have a deep rooted peace. And be prepared to check out at the end of your life as a Grade-A pussy who was ground into a nub and lost the game of life.
We must ask ourselves the hard questions. We need to find time to center, to turn in, to inquire. If we do not, our actions will only stem from what Zen teacher Cheri Huber calls "egocentric, karmic conditioning." Our habitual, reactive responses will make our decisions for us and we will be driven and compelled solely by base-level urges and whims. One day we wake up and realize that the life we're living is built upon two things: fear and what other people have expected from us.
"So this is it? I sold my soul for this?
Washed my hands of that for this?
I miss my mom and dad for this?"
Jesus of Nazareth is said to have asked, "What benefit is it for a man to gain the whole world and lose his soul?" Good question, Jesus. The thing is - a life that ends with one's soul intact doesn't happen naturally. There's too much "egocentric, karmic conditioning" circulating for that. It takes intention. And no one can do that work for us; it's something we have to do individually and on purpose.
This week make it a point to find time to sit quietly. Hell, start right now. Begin to ask who you are, what you stand for, what drives you, what the purpose of your life is. Then shut the fuck up, stop talking and just listen. These answers don't come easily; even though they may arise instantaneously, they most often take years.
When you make the effort to know who you are and what you stand for, you then can begin making decisions based on your deepest truth. You can go to bed at night with peace - knowing that you rocked the shit out of your day. And as you draw nearer to the big GAME OVER, even if you gained nothing in the worldly sense, you know with confidence that your "soul" was intact.
"What do I stand for? What do I stand for?" Only you can know for sure.