PURPOSE – Do You Have One?


Whew – its been two years since I’ve posted on this blog.

Lots of Travels and Changes since then.  Including a new dog, inherited from a friend.

Little Moose - well before he was even a thought to come our way.  Happy he did. Sweet Boy.

Little Moose – well before he was even a thought to come our way. Happy he did. Sweet Boy.

Time to restart the engines. Hi Ya’ll.

What got me going is DAVID BROOKS and his New York Times opinion essay on 5-5-15. With his new book THE ROAD TO CHARACTER, he seems to be on a quest to inspire moral conversation. On his website, invites people to post their bucket list, note their hero and share their purpose. He asked readers to answer three questions: 1. Have you Found Your Purpose in Life? 2. If So, How Did You Find It? 3. What Decisively Helped You Get There?

Geez Lousie – that kind of question is right up my alley!

 

My response is posted below.
And I’m curious as to what your answer would be?
Peace – Laura

MY PURPOSE: ‘Live A Heart Centered Life’
By Laura Matson Hahn

When I was in my formative years, 0 to 18, there were five key elements which formulated what became my purpose in life. It was no grand objective to serve the world. It was more like a bet with myself, could I do it? Sixty years hence I can say I did, and still do.

But I hesitate to use the word purpose – for the word has become associated with the great ‘new age’ scurry to tag oneself with a vaulted ideal or cause. All the better if it garners applause, sell books or engenders an “ah-ha” from the divine Miss O. All of which, keeps people focused on external validation for an understanding that is essentially an inside job.

My purpose was the opposite: “To Live A Heart-Centered Life:” To measure my choices from the inside out. To discover my life, my path, with the guidance of my heart. To be true to the spirit I innately felt within. To trust my quiet inner voice.

While there was no one speaking about “heart-centered” living back then, the adage of follow your heart was ubiquitous and universal. But How to do that was the question I pursued, leading to a most interesting career, diverse study, world travel, good friends, spouse and a book on that very subject.

The five key elements of my youth were:

FIRST: A vivid dream at ten, envisioning a book I would write much later, after I’d acquired some life experience. (this has happened).

SECOND: Around the same age, observing my mother’s duties in raising 8 children led to my declaration not to have children. (never did, never regretted)

THIRD: While cooking dinner, my mother played musicals on the stereo to entertain her children. I became enchanted by a line from The Unsinkable Molly Brown: “I mean much more to me than I mean to anybody I ever knew.” It married my soul. I had to know what that felt like. It sounded good. (and it is).

FOURTH: Growing up in the age of Bo Derek, I longed for a mentor to show me how life works, to tell me what to do. I did not get that mentor. But I got several others who showed me myself and how to apply that in my life choices. (much better)

FIFTH: In my senior High School year, my father had a heart attack and open heart surgery. I witnessed his dramatic life switch from a crew-cut company man to a singer and dancer in local Gilbert and Sullivan productions, taking Chinese cooking and modern dance classes, growing his hair and a beard and learning the art of a well placed valium when the stress of his bosses was too high.

The last solidified my choice to live my life NOW: to risk not being the same as everyone. To strike out on my own with no Daddy Warbucks back up. To make every choice based on the trueness it felt within me, regardless of other’s options. To avoid external measures.

Was it easy? Nawww. It takes a pretty strong constitution to swim up stream. I didn’t marry young and have children. I didn’t want to raise someone else to live their life true. I wanted to know the truth of me, in this body, on this earth, at this time. I wanted to feel ALIVE like Maggie The Cat and Auntie Mame. I did things my family didn’t understand. I sought out knowledge about the spirit and sociology, participating in a wide range of classes and movements, harvesting what was right for me and letting the rest go. Each decade revealed new challenges, understanding, temperance, disappointment, excitement and love until finally I was ready to write the book on just that subject and LO! science had caught up with my initial sensibilities.

In the 1990’s Paul Pearsall and Doc Childre premiered books on the factual discoveries of the Heart’s Intelligence separate from the brain and the actual existence of the heart’s wisdom. It spurred me to add my voice to that knowledge with the creation of the novel, THE HEART CODE, illustrating the hows and means for hearing and heeding one’s heart. And I wrapped it around the facts of an ancient civilization, the original Bohemians, Circa 3000 BCE (who inspired your own work, Mr. Brooks: Bohos In Paradise).

So in essence, my philosophic choice turned into my purpose many years later.

As Gamma says to her granddaughter in The Heart Code:
“To make dream is good, is part of life. Is how we know ourselves, test ourselves . . . but maybe is only small part of journey. More important, maybe, is what happen along the way. The people we meet. The laughter we find. The trouble we work through. Things we cannot know or imagine. Things we cannot dream. Things that come out of following our dream. This, I think, is what life is really for. To find out who we are from what we face, with courage, with creativity, with truth. This is why we have life, I think. Dreams are just something to do while we learn how to live.”

I think that is true for the majority of people who live as best they can from a good interior set of values. From my experience, the only thing I have to pass on to every generation is this: We now know we are mostly the same, in our DNA. So what makes us unique is our path. The key skill for finding that path is hearing your own heart voice. Everything we need to maximize our learning and loving on this planet is already in one’s heart. In essence: It’s An Inside Job.

**** Now, if you like, Share Yours! ***

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One response to this post.

  1. Posted by susan hanlon on May 24, 2015 at 4:28 pm

    MY PURPOSE IN LIFE-The question is: have you found your purpose in life, if so how did you find it, and what decisively helped you to get there?

    I have several purposes which crystallized early in my life, but I will only tell you about the two most important and urgent ones.

    My first and most important purpose in live has been to promote equality and opportunities for women, especially young girls, to optimize their lives in love, health, financial independence; to successfully achieve whatever their life goals may be without the pressure of gender specific roles and barriers.

    Growing up in the 1950’s, as a young girl, I was athletically gifted. I was a better athlete then the boys I played with and I liked that they were more competitive than the girls in my neighborhood. When it came time to sign up for little league, I asked my Dad to sign me up only to find he was told I couldn’t play because I was girl. I was really devastated I couldn’t believe what was happening; at 11 years old it was my first taste of sexual discrimination. My Dad and Uncle were great. On my behalf, they went to bat for me to the local little league commission to plead my case and once again we were turned down cold, I couldn’t play.

    I am delighted that today, young girls and women now have the opportunity to participate competitively in all sports. I am hopeful that my little bit of persistence, along with many other women influenced this progress.

    My second and most urgent purpose in life is to be a responsible custodian of our earth and to promote and practice sustainable, responsible, compassionate and educated behavior to all man/women-kind and the global environment.

    My Dad grew up on a farm in New Jersey. My siblings and I were fortunate to be able to experience the work involved in farm life until economics forced the sale of the land to a retirement community. Riding the tractor with my Dad as I balanced on the wheel fender, I marveled how much he knew about nature. He exposed and enchanted me with his ability to see, sense, feel and smell all the life around us. He could spot where the deer slept that night, catch the last glimpse of the tail of a fox as it crossed our path, and I could also see the sadness on his face as we found neighbors dumping what look like oil into the creek bed.

    My life style choices are based on current scientific findings that prescribe the best solutions and have the best outcome on our environment and society. I used cloth diapers for my two boys, I drive a hybrid car, I bring my reusable bags to the super market, I buy items with little and recyclable packaging, and try to make other choices that optimize my social and environmental footprint.

    I am just one person, but added to all the others that share my purposes in life we can make a difference. Susan Hanlon Date: Fri, 15 May 2015 17:32:46 +0000 To: shanlon05@hotmail.com

    Reply

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