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“Accept whatever comes to you woven in the pattern of your

destiny, for what could more aptly fit your needs?”

–          Marcus Aurelius

 

If you look back on the life you have lived until now, you will see that everything you have experienced, every choice, every turn, every chance encounter and new direction, led you to this precise point in space and time.  Different choices, different encounters would have taken you to another place – to a different life. How much of this life of yours was born in the conscious mind, chosen according to desire – and how much was it the hand of destiny, that brought you to the now?

 Destiny, the course of your life, is orchestrated  by your Soul. It is not as inevitably blind as the word fate suggests. Rather, it is rich with meaning and intent.  Destiny is a force of the invisible, being played out in the visible world.  The conscious mind with its power of will, and its capacity for introspection,  interweaves with this invisible force.  If we use the gift of our higher mind, or our conscious self-awareness, we can be willing co-creators of our lives. If we do not, we are likely to feel that our lives are ‘fated’ – and drive ourselves to despair and dis-ease trying to control and outwit that fickle handed  foe.

  In Oneness, all paradox is reconciled. In duality, where we live – as always, a decision is called for.  Will we co-operate with our destiny, or will we not?  Usually, the choice is made unconsciously – but an unconscious choice is a choice nevertheless.  While the eyes of polarity will always struggle with the question: ‘is it fate or free will that dictates the course of our lives?’  –  A higher awareness, able to transcend the ‘illusion of duality’ ultimately harmonizes the seemingly irreconcilable, and lives ease-ily and peace-fully – knowing resistance and control are as futile as each other.  In truth, co-operating with our destiny is less about choice as it is about self-discovery and self-realization.

 Accepting our destiny, as the quote above suggests, is how we most aptly fit our needs. But what are our needs?  We must be careful not to confuse the demands of the ego with the needs of the Soul. The way to discern our genuine needs from the superficial wants of the ego is simple: we must follow our nature.  This is the way of the Tao – to uncover our nature, to accept it, and to flow with it. This doesn’t mean sitting back and drifting idly down the river of life. Wu-wei  is ‘effortless action’, this is the approach to life we are advised to adopt.  It is about action – but it is also about ease. And ease comes in embracing discipline. Paradoxical?   For now – but only until we have the awareness to see otherwise.

 The Soul, that container of all the memories of all the lives we have lived, knows what we really need.  For example, will we follow the ego’s promptings and choose a certain career path because of the prestige we think it will bring us, and the healthy salary;  or, will we be courageous enough to follow our passion, taking the path with a heart and becoming a musician, an artist, a writer – forfeiting a regular pay packet to be true to our deeper, more authentic needs? 

 “The Taoist sees the ego as a hard core,

Which can be broken only by the energy

of the unconscious, which penetrates it,

turns it inside out.”

-Chang Chung-Yuan

 

 

 

There is an organic pattern to our lives – in Taoism it is known as ‘Li’.  Our energy is our guide to our ‘Li’.  If we trust our intuitive impulses and nurture our unique nature by accepting and flowing with it, we will come to the end of the road, having had a well lived life.

 

 “How can I be still?

By flowing with the stream”    (Lao Tzu)

 

 To uncover your nature, self-awareness is vital.  The call is for introspection. Ask yourself: what are your affinities and talents? What are you drawn to do, to create in the world?  What makes your heart sing and what brings you joy?  What do you find yourself recoiling from? What galvanizes your fight, your passion, your protective instincts? How do you feel and express compassion?  Do you do good in the world for others, or for your own self-image? When do you feel deep satisfaction, pleasure, contentment? When do you fear? What do you berate yourself for? Why do you berate yourself?  What do you need to do to heal your ancient wounds?

 

 “Alone I am and different

Because I prize and seek my sustenance

From the Mother (Tao)

–          Lao Tzu

 

 

 

A cautionary word may be appropriate in any discussion on ‘following your nature’ – and is best illustrated by the fable of the scorpion and the turtle…..

 Unable to swim, the scorpion pleads with the turtle to ferry him across the river on her back. The turtle refuses on the grounds that the scorpion will sting her and she will drown. “But why would I do that?” asks the scorpion, “When both of us would then go under.”  Unable to refute this logic the turtle agrees to act as ferry. Sure enough, when they are halfway across the river, the scorpion stings the turtle.  When the outraged turtle demands to know why he did this after arguing so convincingly that he wouldn’t, the scorpion replies:   “I couldn’t help it. It’s just my nature.”

 

‘Our nature’ is not an invitation to refuse the evolutionary impulse for self-improvement. We must do our best to find the ‘higher ground’ – that is, the highest expression of our nature.

 It is helpful and right for us to acknowledge and honour the uniqueness of our natures. You might like to see it this way: the universe had a particular requirement for you to embody the unique energetic imprint that was illumined in the planetary pattern at the time of your birth. Your DNA was stamped at that moment with an energetic frequency which reflected your karmic history, as well as your evolutionary intentions, for this life.  The Higher Self chose the personality  vehicle you have, for a reason.  And that reason dictates your destiny……..should you choose to accept it.  Acceptance means giving up the fight to be other than you are. It means trusting your Soul to lead your heart…….trusting the process that is the pattern of your life’s unfoldment.  

 ‘The reason’ leads you into situations and encounters with others to help you heal the wounds of your emotional body.  Always the intent is for healing and wholeness.  We all arrive here broken – and the reason is always for  us.  It is not part of the plan for us to go backwards, to experience more pain, to sustain more wounding. And yet, if we lack self-awareness,  if we deny the call of our personality to heal its wounds, and fail to see the higher purpose in the events  that come our way, then, in this world of polarity, where opposition is the predominant energy and the ego has very effectively hijacked the consciousness of most of us, we can fall by default into pain and confusion, bitterly lamenting the cruel hand of fate, and creating more wounding as we go. The state of the world today doesn’t help any of us in this quest to ‘trust a higher power’ – with its constant programming of fear and insecurity. Yet more reason to give up the fight.

 

If you can trust the reason, as well as healing the past, it will lead you in the direction of your Soul’s evolutionary purpose. It will help you build on your strengths, affinities and talents, so that you can reap the rewards of past efforts and if you choose, develop them further – perhaps attaining mastery in this life. If self-awareness (consciousness) is lacking, we may waste our potential, fritter away our talents and, taking the line of least resistance, end up missing the opportunities that come with this precious lifetime. Life is a gift and its purpose is to live it.

 When certain things come our way that we would definitely not have chosen, we have a choice as to how we will interpret these events. We can choose to see that whatever occurred happened for a higher reason, for a particular purpose that is not (currently) known to us.  (Life must be lived forward, but it can only be understood backwards). It may be we needed to take a different path, and the event created the opportunity for us to do so. We later realize that if whatever it was hadn’t occurred, we would have stayed in the same place and missed out of all that unfolded as a result of our enforced change of course.

 In truth, we have very little control over our lives. Less than we think.  Whatever happens in our lives, occurs because it needed to – for our Soul growth. Some of it may be about the balancing of karma, or it may be more about the culture or collective we are born into. We can learn to let go of the reins of control and release our resistance to a seemingly arbitrary fate. As we silence the voice of the ego, with its never ending child-like demands, to be more, have more, do more,  and instead trust the process, we can rest in the knowledge that we are immortal beings and we can never be without life.  When we relax into our ‘Li’, life takes us where we need to go. We do not know what is for us, and what is not for us – but our Soul does.

 When we stop spilling our energy out into the world in a constant fight to control things, and turn it inwards instead – paying attention to the moment, asking ourselves what we really need, what we most love to do, what makes us feel good (rather than fearful),  what brings us joy and lifts our vibratory frequency; when we let go and relax – with the breath, with awareness – then we allow our rightful and perfect destiny, the one that was waiting for us all along, to unfold. As it will.

 

 

 “To recognize what is beyond your ability to change

And to be content with this as your destiny – that

Is truly a sign of virtue.”

–          Chuang Tzu

 

 

 

 

 

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