Reading from Class: Finding Purpose Within…and Cultivating Unconditional Friendliness
“Sometimes folks will treasure your work, sometimes they won’t. Sometimes you’ll get the gig, sometimes you won’t. You’ll be on the marquee and you’ll be passé. You’ll be thanked and you’ll be taken for granted. You’ll give and you’ll get nothing in return. You’ll be “Liked” and you’ll be unfriended…Anchor your purpose within, sweet friend. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself drifting out at sea again and again.” — Kris Carr
Another one from my buddy Andrea‘s site. I was initially inspired to share by a student moving to NYC to pursue acting. Practice offers the opportunity to find space from the external forces that we often use to base self-worth, value and happiness.
The quote is from Kris Carr’s Huffington Post blog post titled “The Myth of Finding Your Purpose” and found it inspiring and necessary. I highly recommend it. It sounds like it was Kris Carr’s New Year’s message. I am excited to share it this week as it co-incides with Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year.
In the post (read it, as I will not do it justice), she speaks to finding our purpose within, outside of the statuses of work, relationship, clicks, views, fb, etc. We easily attach our happiness to recognition, offers, praise, acknowledgement and their counterparts. We can easily feel valued or worthless based on these factors. She speaks to finding our purpose through self-acceptance, forgiveness, compassion, faith and kindness
Kris’s message inspires the practice of Maitri (Sanskrit) or Mettā (Pali) cultivating Unconditional Love or Friendship towards ourselves (and therefore others). It all comes back to Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra 1.33 — Can’t leave home without it! I focused on the sutra this past March and cultivating this unconditional love by practicing loving kindness, compassion, joy and equanimity (i.e., the Four Limitless Ones).
I am no expert, so here is Pema Chödrön on Maitri (I love listening to her speak!):
Incorporating Loving Kindness meditation (Mettā or Maitri) along with exercising the questions Kris poses in the post and practicing sutra 1.33 in our relations with ourselves and others is the perfect combination to strengthen Kris’s message of purpose in unconditional love and friendship with ourselves. In this form of meditation we practice forgiveness and compassion for ourselves and others. Turning inward we get quiet, connecting to and empowered by our greater Self awareness, we can continue on a journey that is plagued with distractions and opportunities to become less.
Here are a few guided meditations to support your work:
A guided Loving Kindness Meditation by teacher Sharon Salzberg (27 min):
Take the opportunity with the Jewish New Year to reflect. We can gently gage and acknowledge our growth and where we may have veered and then forgive and re-commit to ourselves. Making time to re-commit and renew ourSelves can happen outside of New Years. You can do so with the start of each new season, month, week, day or breath.
Shana tova umethuka
“It’s a new dawn, it’s a new day, it’s a new life…”