By Blake D. Bauer ~~~
As I watch my father dying, the meaning of life is very clear to me. Sadly, he will never enjoy his favorite meal again, drink fresh clean water, make love, create to his full capacity, walk freely, breathe fully, or experience many of the other gifts that come with being in a human body. I am personally trying not to take these miracles for granted each day, and I am very grateful for the blessing and lessons in this situation.
The meaning of life is actually very simple. In my experience, we come here to enjoy life and love in a human body on this planet as fully as possible, while simultaneously bringing unconditional pure love into the world. We came here to master what it means to love ourselves unconditionally and thus be our true self fully in every situation and moment. The natural byproduct of this learning is that our words, thoughts, and actions become full of loving kindness, honesty and grace, which then becomes the energy with which we create and shape our lives, our relationships, and then our outer experience of the world.
We become fully aware and clear about the meaning of life by not taking the miracle of daily human life, or the miracle that we are, the miracle of our existence, for granted. As I am sure you can relate, I have found that life will take away anything or anyone we do not appreciate, which includes our health and our loved ones. For me the only path to living in a way that honors the meaning of life and also allows me to feel this deeply each day, is to speak and act authentically and kindly in each moment, which means I must remain as present as possible and as aware as possible of what I am feeling to be my inner truth. I have found that when we betray ourselves by not being honest in our words and actions daily, we hurt ourselves and cut ourselves off from both the source of what we’re seeking and the purpose of being alive. This dynamic also cuts us off from connecting genuinely with other people, which sabotages the possibility of deep loving intimacy both emotionally and physically.
To feel meaning in our life now we have to live in a way today, not tomorrow, where we engage in work and relationships that are personally meaningful and completely honest to our values and our heart. Rather than allowing our fear or insecurity to stop us from being true to ourselves, we need to relate to life daily in courageous ways that respect our deeper essence, nature, and being. Often we self-destructively seek meaning through losing ourselves to the needs of others, or by distracting ourselves from ourselves, in an endless attempt to please other people or make them happy. We unconsciously believe this will help us remain safe and also connected to the feeling of meaning we crave. But this always leaves an underlying dissatisfaction and self-harm in place, which in my experience, is the root cause for most forms of suffering, depression and physical disease.
No human being wants to be alive or in a body where we hide our true self from others or live a lie, which is why a heart not cared for becomes a body that does not feel good to be in, nor worthy of loving care. If our true feelings, needs and vision do not matter to us because we do not view them as meaningful, then our body and life will feel empty, meaningless and unworthy of healthy maintenance. This is black and white. For me the most liberating view is to see all of this as self-created and intended to teach us about what really matters. It’s designed to teach us how to stop rejecting our true self–our true feelings and our true calling—so over time we awaken fully and embody our amazing creative potential as an expression of universal intelligence, or God in human form. This meaning in our lives can never be felt, experienced or seen clearly through thoughts or ideas about the future. Likewise, true meaning cannot be tasted through concepts or theories on the meaning of life. It can only be our vivid felt experience, which words will never do justice in expressing, by speaking, acting and embodying the loving honest truth within us now, today, each moment and each day.
Shambhala Mountain Center hosts Beyond Suffering: Unconditional Self Love, Mindfulness, Meditation & Qi Gong Retreat with Blake D. Bauer, December 2–4 — click here to learn more
About the Author
Blake D. Bauer is an internationally recognized author, counselor, qigong master, and alternative medicine practitioner. His best-selling book You Were Not Born To Suffer and pioneering work focus on unconditional self-love as the key to self-healing, fulfilling your life’s purpose, and awakening spiritually. Bringing together what he’s found to be the most effective spiritual practices and holistic approaches to well-being, Blake’s work has successfully guided thousands of people around the world to greater health and freedom in mind and body. // Blake D. Bauer