The meaning of life is to learn and grow internally as we experience and contribute to the outer world.
- Learn to Remember: In remembering daily that life is a fleeting impermanent gift, we give ourselves an opportunity to cultivate a sense of inspiration to do something incredible with it.
- Learn to Experience Wonder: There is a vast amount of beauty and wonder in the world. While we are here, we can experience wonder by exploring the world consciously with our five senses. We are taking in the wonder of life by observing the night sky; smelling the jasmine in spring; tasting the sweetest of nectar; hearing a river flow; feeling the beating heart of a beloved with presence.
- Learn to Love: Life can be beautiful when we remember the true nature of our being is love. When we truly love ourselves, we can give from the heart authentically and embrace the world with unconditional love.
- Learn to be Courageous: Embodying a strong sense of courage invites us to be independent of the approval of others, and alleviates fear. Courage allows us to stand and walk with strength in all circumstances, from the playground to the boardroom.
- Learn to Trust Ourselves: Our body is one of our main guides in this adventure. To help manifest the life we imagine, we can trust our internal guides — heart, gut, and intuition — to positively influence decisions that affect all of our life circumstances.
- Learn to Understand Desire: When we are in utero, we already have desire. It kicks in and we desire warmth, nurturance and comfort. Part of learning how to master life on earth is learning how to overcome our immediate desire for worldly comforts. In overcoming desire, we must first recognize our deepest desire is to be loved unconditionally.
- Learn Appreciation for our Interdependence: When we are aware of our deep interdependence, we awaken to the miracles that surround us. By witnessing and appreciating our powerful interconnectedness and deep oneness, gratitude arises for all things. With gratitude — even when things are really difficult and everything seems to be falling apart — we can appreciate our hardship and gifts, seeing everything as an opportunity for transcendence.
- Learn to Contribute and Create Goodness: Each of us is unique and has the ability to provide different contributions to the world; in our work, the way we love, practice kindness, or create projects. We can create just about anything with a sense of goodness. In seeing someone sad, we can listen; in seeing that our brothers and sisters are thirsty, we can provide water; in seeing war, we can be advocates for peace. Through contributing and creating goodness, we can make the world a better place.
- Learn to Trust: We can trust in a divine power, greater than ourselves, which guides and directs all things. It is important to remember this power most when we are lost. To see the dance of the divine in all things, in the darkness and the light.
- Learn to Forgive: Forgiveness sets us free from fear, and is a gift into our own heart. When we learn to forgive by seeing the person’s actions as a manifestation of their suffering rather than as something personal to us, it is easier to forgive. When we forgive, we release our expectations and any sense of entitlement to the fulfillment of our desires and we let go. When we forgive, we are no longer defined by our pain and we can be free from the mental anguish that block us from feeling happy.
- Learn to Accept Suffering: When we accept our suffering as part of the process of being alive, our suffering can become a pathway to transcendence.
- Learn to Let Go: While alive, we can learn how to be present with love, without clinging, and learn to let go. We can learn to be unattached to the outcome of all that we do, and do so with presence and integrity. Recognizing all things are fleeting, including those we love, we can learn to let go with grace. We must learn in the end to even fearlessly let go of ourselves.
~Carin Winter is the founder of Mission Be, Mindful Education and has successfully brought mindfulness into 32 schools from Big Sur, California to Harlem, New York- scaling their impact to over 30,000 students in the first two years. She has been studying the work of mindfulness for over 20 years and is talented meditation teacher, gifted speaker and visionary. Carin founded Embrace Yoga Center in New York in 2007 and lead the company for seven years where she successfully directed a team to teach yoga, meditation, dance, yoga camp, children’s yoga & movement, pre-postnatal yoga, mommy and me classes and mindfulness.
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