“The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everybody rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.” -Alan Watts
I don’t know about you, but for me it is more than a little ironic that when we strip ourselves down to the raw ingredients and take away all the mundane story lines of our lives, the fundamental question of our very existence can still seem mysterious and complex.
In truth, none of us really knows why we are here, and we tend to get swept away with all of the things we think we have to do; so much so, we forget our true nature. We forget our purpose. We forget how to love and be loved.
So, how do we strip our lives down quickly and simply to remember more regularly why we’re here?
Here are 5 quick ways to get back to basics:
1. Tell someone you love them. Make it easy to start, and choose someone that you really do love! Once you break the ice and expose yourself, go out on a limb and remember the person that you may feel more ambivalent about, and tell them. Cut out all the other story lines that may or may not be true, and get back to a place of love.
2. Do something nice for a stranger. Whether it is giving up your seat on the tube, slowing down and letting someone pass you on the street, or picking up the tab on a nearby table in a restaurant, do something unexpected and get out of your head and into kindness. Have fun being creative! Try dropping the expectation of any response.
3. Think before you buy. Have a look around your home. Who or what contributed to the contents and packaging? What you could buy in a different way, with less packaging, harming fewer beings. Bringing your own bags to the market is a great start. How about going to the green grocer and buying lettuce without the wrapping? Ever thought about going vegan one day a week? Start small, and celebrate your contribution to making every day Be Kind to the Earth and Her People Day.
4. Move your body. Your body is an instrument to communicate, to give an receive; it’s your vessel for manifesting love. Your hands are your heart’s extension, so have strong hands, all the better to touch someone in a loving and kind manner. Keep your whole self ‘fit as a fiddle’, whether that be through yoga, dance, swimming, walking or something else that helps to oil the joints, strengthen the muscles and keep the tissues and cells of the body alive and mobile.
5. Make it positive. Become aware of your thoughts, words and actions. How much of the day are you feeding yourself and others positive messages? Cut out all the other stuff, and get to the good stuff. You will feel better, and so will those around you. Be Love, and if you can’t be Love, be Like (and if you can’t be like, be indifferent).
Don’t let life be ‘what happens while you’re making other plans’. Who knows why, but it’s happening now, and we’re a part of it. Carpe Diem.