Posts tagged ‘destiny’

July 3, 2016

All roads lead to . . .

Thought of the moment, courtesy of 17th-century French fable-writer Jean de La Fontaine:

A person often meets his destiny on the road he took to avoid it.

Hmmm, so much for procrastination!

Or, perhaps each of us really does have a specific purpose in this life, and whichever road we take will ultimately lead us to it, whether directly or via a more circuitous route.

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February 25, 2016

Life: opportunities to follow or not

I found this great quote from six-time Canadian Olympic athlete Clara Hughes in her book Open Heart, Open Mind:

I don’t believe in destiny, any more than I believe that if you wait long enough your true calling will find you. I believe we create opportunities that we follow or we don’t.

December 7, 2014

Squander your love

From the memoir Every Day in Tuscany by Frances Mayes:

A large percentage of control over fate doesn’t exist, [so] how to go forward?

Cultivate interior life as though it were a garden sanctuary.
Give away what you can.
Squander your love.

Life is short. Make yours rich with meaning and purpose. ❤

September 27, 2014

Here you are again, she said

In her memoir Unsinkable, former Olympic rower Silken Laumann writes this passage about the interconnection between destiny and choice in each person’s life:

I have a belief . . . that goes something like this: Each of our lives is a book already written whose chapters have multiple endings. Depending on the choices we make, a chapter goes in one direction or another, but the book’s narrative moves forward with a relentless rhythm and aspects of inevitability. The things we are meant to do appear again and again in our story, until we recognize our responsibility and accept the challenge. No matter how hard we try to avoid them, or back away because we are scared or unwilling, they keep showing up in various incarnations.

What strikes me most about this passage is the latter part about how “the things we are meant to do” appear again and again in our personal story, in our thoughts, in our dreams and visions. I am experiencing this phenomenon right now: a certain person keeps popping up in my life story. I like to think that this person’s recurring presence is happening for a reason, because there is some inevitable yet unknown place that we are supposed to go together. Only time — and perhaps our own individual choices — will tell.

 

September 8, 2014

This full moon, return to yourself

On the eve of the 2014 harvest moon — also a supermoon — I share the lyrics from the song “Return to Innocence” by Enigma.

In this life, follow your heart, and don’t be afraid to take a risk or two. Be well.

Don’t be afraid to be weak.
Don’t be too proud to be strong.
Just look into your heart, my friend;
That will be the return to yourself:
The return to innocence.

If you want, then start to laugh.
If you must, then start to cry.
Be yourself; don’t hide.
Just believe in destiny.
Don’t care what people say.
Just follow your own way.
Don’t give up and lose the chance
To return to innocence.

November 25, 2012

Kuleana: where talent and trajectory (responsibly) meet

I’m always interested in notions about personal destiny and life purpose, and recently I came across a new (to me) branch in this tree of ideas:  the Hawaiian concept of kuleana.  Broadly defined as “responsibility,” kuleana is understood to include a deep accountability to several interconnected realms:  self, family, community, earth, etc.

I discovered the concept in the pages of Terrie M. Williams’ book The Odyssey of KP2:  An Orphan Seal, a Marine Biologist, and the Fight to Save a Species.  She writes:

Kuleana is a Hawaiian word that has no direct translation into English.  It describes the sense of ancestral-based responsibility that often comes with a unique undertaking or experience.  It is destiny with a DNA underpinning coupled with a realization that you are doing what you were meant to do in this life, the harmonization of talent and trajectory.

In my experience, the happiest individuals are those who have discovered their kuleana.  Such individuals weather hardships, challenges and sacrifices not as obstacles or excuses for failure but as a natural part of life’s adventures.  The entire odyssey called life is a joy.

A beautiful concept — and one that gently encourages us to think and act beyond our own small spheres of perceived influence.  There is so much more out there, all around us, and we are accountable to it (all of it) by simple virtue of the fact that we are, at root, a creation of it.

I also find it noteworthy that kuleana has no direct translation into English.  The concept — with its interconnectedness and wide-ranging responsibility — certainly exists within other indigenous cultures, but it is much less prevalent within “modern” white societies, which tend to be driven more by personal gain than by personal responsibility.  If there were words in English to describe kuleana, would our motivations be different? How can we create the words to fill that gap?

I hope you find your kuleana.  May your life’s journey be an odyssey of joy.