In The Drive, I spoke a little about Purpose. Knowing your purpose can be a handy guide in life. Purpose gives you a sense of why, what your life is about. It helps in making decisions. It brings clarity.
Of course there are books like Eckhart Tolle’s “A New Earth, Awaking to your Life’s Purpose.” I spoke about his conversation with Oprah through a series of posts. The purpose he speaks about is the deeper purpose, the why we’re all here purpose. The drive each of us has to awaken to who we are. Here, I speak of your unique purpose, the unique role you have here in the Play.
To understand this Purpose its useful to break it down a little into function.
1) Purpose – I am. Why we’re here. An I am statement like ‘I am the painter’ or ‘I am the gatherer’ This is not your job or employment, though your job will express it to a larger or smaller degree. Sometomes purpose will be expressed more in other areas of life, where job reflects our day to day needs. But even in our work, the underlying purpose will be there.
Purpose is automatic and inherent in everything we do. It is the theme that runs through our life, underlies everything. It may not seem like there is a theme in your life, but when you discover purpose, it will be apparent.
2) Mission – I will. The driver – An I will statement like ‘I will understand’, ‘I will create’. This is your passion itself, the handle Purpose uses to express.
3) Vision – How it is expressed, the form your purpose takes, the reality you express into the Play of the world.
Purpose also leads to primary, ongoing Goals and to Core Values.
It leads to our Roles, which may change form over time.
How do you find purpose? Pay attention to what is. See the flow in and through your life. You may find it in exploring what you love. Make a series of “I love” statements and you may find the theme.
For example, you may get a list like ‘I love swimming’, ‘I love mountain climbing’, ‘I love explaining’, etc. You may then see a theme of love of sports and teaching, leading to a passion to help people be fit and explore the outdoors, find peace in nature. Sometimes, it can be a “doh” moment. Our purpose is usually obvious once you see it.
If you understand your passion, then its easier to step back into the I am statement.
Ask your friends. Other people often have a more objective viewpoint. Perhaps discuss your I love list. But pay attention to how it feels. Is the feeling resistance or does it ring a bell? You may have to sit with it a bit.
I’ve spoken here quite a bit about the dynamics of the ego. We tend to have big blind spots where we have lessons. Also the ego may not want you to understand why you’re here. That would mean you will begin to not need it anymore.
You serve the world by living your vision. Knowing your purpose, mission and vision means you can live much truer to why you’re here. Don’t fall into the trap of expecting that your purpose must in itself be grand. The grandness is in what Eckhart speaks about, the deeper purpose. How that expresses in the world through you may be apparently mundane, like selling shoes. But if we are That, even the simple acts will add to the peace and enlightenment of the world. In the mundane, we touch the world.