Living Well on Earth
Life as a Mythological Adventure
Joseph Campbell compared our quests to realize our dreams to a mythological adventure and I quote:
“Leaving the bounded world in which you have been brought up, going beyond all that anybody knows into domains of transcendence, and then acquiring what is missing and coming back with the booty----“ Transformation of Myth Through Time
In other words any quest to acquire knowledge, improve the condition of mankind, help the poor, heal the sick, save the children, feed the hungry or accomplish a life mission is like an adventure in which one experiences many challenges and setbacks but eventually realizes the dream or aspiration. Heroes in mythology are usually given all sorts of help in their quests. The same is true for you and I who set out to pursue our dreams. There is an invisible source of support for all of us or the Universe supports all creatures. Go about your dreams or aspirations; you will experience this source of support when you begin your quest. The support is part of the journey!
Helping the World
Joseph Campbell was a famous scholar, teacher and writer before his transition on October 31, 1987. He once said to his students at Sarah Lawrence College in New York that if they really wanted to help this world what they would teach is how to live in it.
How can we live in this world to be at peace in it? How can we live in this world to be at peace with it? How can we live in this world to avoid polluting the Earth? How can we live in this world to fulfill our purpose? How can we live in this world to conquer fear? How can we live in this world to be free? How can we live in this world to manage our emotions? How can we live in this world to know that nothing is permanent? How can we live in this world to be responsible? How can we live in this world to take care of our needs? How can we live in this world to avoid abusing alcohol? How can we live in this world to avoid abusing sex? How can we live in this world to avoid abusing food? How can we live in this world to avoid abusing drugs? How can we live in this world to avoid abusing people? How can we live in this world to avoid abusing animals? How can we live in this world to be careful? How can we live in this world to be healthy? How can we live in this world to have fulfilling relationships? How can we live in this world to be happy? How can we live in this world to be at peace? How can we live in this world to be compassionate? How can we live in this world to improve our lives? How can we live in this world to be faithful? How can we live in this world to be tolerant?. How can we live in this world to stay out of prison? How can we live in this world to be there for our children? How can we live in this world to love? How can we live in this world to realize our dreams?
The answers to all these questions are already with you and if you have issues with any of them the first place to look is within you. The moment you begin to look elsewhere outside yourself you have already lost. Take a minute and consider how the blueprint of your life could be in a book like a sacred text. When you think about it you would agree that it does not make sense. The blueprint of your life can only be within you. I know some of us do not even know how to face ourselves let alone finding out the answers within us. But it is not impossible because like everything on earth it begins with practice. And the first step is to sit still and do nothing. You can enhance this practice by setting up your sacred place, dedicating it and using it daily. Here is what Joseph Campbell said about the Sacred Place:
A sacred place is a necessity for everybody. You must have a room or a certain hour a day or so where you do not know what was in the newspapers that morning, you don’t know who your friends are, you don’t know what you owe to anybody, you don’t know what anybody owes you; but a place where you can simply experience and bring forth what you are---what you might be. This is the place of creative incubation. At first you might find that nothing is happening there, but if you have a sacred place and use it and take advantage of it something will happen. The Power of Myth, Page 115
Health experts have often said that complete healing or wellness can only result from healing the whole body. So we hear about holistic medicine, holistic healing. In effect they want to heal all of you. Not just the physical but also the emotional, spiritual and the environment in which you live.
The physical body needs nutritious food, beneficial regular exercise, adequate rest, maintaining an appropriate weight, and proper stress management. The consequences of neglecting these would be overweight, fatigue and lack of motivation. You have become a “couch potato”. Healthy living actually begins with adhering to a daily affirmation of eating mostly seeds, nuts, fruits and vegetable.
The truth about the body and the mind has been established. We now know that there is no separation between the mind and the body. Many experts even believe that a greater percentage of our diseases result from our mind; from what we think. So we can help our bodies by having positive thoughts, forgiving others for misdeeds against us, apologizing for our misdeeds against others, giving unconditional love and compassion to all inhabitants of the planet, accepting our friends and family for who they are and enjoying life together, and of course we need to accept ourselves for who we are and work on growth and development.
Our Spiritual body also needs to be nurtured. It wants to connect with other people and other inhabitants of the Earth. It wants to connect with the Earth and it wants to connect with Universal Love. Nurture your Spiritual Body through meditation, connecting with others and knowing the Earth on which you live. Be calm and meditate often. Listen to the inner voice and think about Universal Love always.
The environment is about the benefits and deficits of our immediate surroundings. Is it polluted? Are there toxins in the air? Is our water clean? Are we happy with our home? Are we happy with our work? How about your sleeping and work area? You know what to do. How connected are we with our environment, to the land on which we live?
It has been said that success is a journey meaning that success has no end. In other words as long as you live you must continue to do the things that keep you healthy or make you happy and fulfilled. Successful people know their talents and gifts. Develop your talents and gifts. Get a good education. Get the proper training in your work. Have a dream to succeed in life. Learn from your failures. Do not quit. Successful people know what they want. What do you want in life? What do you want to be? What do you want to give? What do you want to achieve?
Successful people are decisive. You decide to succeed. You decide to realize your dreams. You decide to overcome! You decide to change! You decide to continue! You decide and it will be done. Successful people are persistent. Do not accept failure. Learn from failure. And keep going till you succeed. Successful people are reflective. Reflect on your life daily. Meditate on your hopes and fears. Think through your plans. Think before you act. Successful people are responsible. Take full responsibility for your life. Take full responsibility for your actions. Take full responsibility for all the things that happen to you. Take full responsibility for your success. You are a creator!
Living well means you know what your talents and gifts are, you know what you want, you know your limitations and you know where you are going. Aspire to do the best with your talents. Help others with your talents. Think of your gifts and decide what you could do with them. Prepare yourself thoroughly in your chosen field. Leadership often comes to those who are good in what they do. Reflect on your life daily. Meditate on your hopes and fears. And think about what your life means to you.
Your life is limitless. There is nothing to fear in life or in death! Know who you are. Knowing who you are can translate into self-knowledge. You trust yourself if you know who you are. You are comfortable with yourself if you know who you are. Have a vision for your life. What do you want to be? What do you want to do? What do you want to give? What do you want to create? What do you want to have? Be courageous. Do not yield to fear. Do not yield to intimidation. Do not yield to uncertainty. Do not yield to failure. Do not yield to setbacks. Do not yield to discouragement.
Communicate what you want to do. Communicate your vision. Share your vision with your parents. Share your vision with Grandpa. Share your vision with Grandma. Share your vision with your playmates. Share your vision with your teachers. Live by Universal Ethical values. Universal Values are based on Universal Love. Universal Values are based on Universal Freedom. Universal Values are based on Universal Truth. Universal Values are based on Universal Equality.
Respect others’ belongings. Use proper language. Take your turn. And love all creatures without conditions. Develop your character. Do not yield to temptations. Manage your inclinations. Control your material longing. Speak your mind. Practice what you believe. Respect all creatures. Decide what you want to accomplish. You decide to succeed. You decide to realize your vision. You decide to overcome! You decide to change. You decide to lead. You decide and it will be done!