An Epiphany

by Karl Smerecnik on February 29, 2012

Unless your next action is going to give you the same joy a child experiences in a sandbox, don't do it.

I recently had an epiphany.

When I submit myself to self-sacrificial service of others (at times I have called it “loving others”), I then depend upon their appreciation to experience a sense of purpose, meaning, and worth. When I do things out of obligation and duty, it is inevitable that I will feel resentment – even though I try telling myself I shouldn’t be feeling resentment. (This is how a domination-oriented culture attempts to control people).

I have chosen to be subservient and docile so much of my life. I have so often prioritized actions that were solely intended to gain approval and acceptance of others. I would often convince myself that my self-sacrifice was altruistic compassion for others. But it was actually just an attempt to buy love.

It has suddenly become so clear to me that this approach of self-denial is not contributing to myself nor others.

When I pursue the things that bring me aliveness, everything that I give comes joyfully from the heart and I need nothing in return. When I experience people in that state of aliveness, I feel deeply drawn to them. And I have noticed when I am in that state, people are drawn to me.

Though I’m not yet fully confident about this approach and am still very concerned about the oppression and suffering in the world, I hear a resounding “YES!” in my body when I take this approach. And I’m learning it’s very important to pay attention anytime I hear that “yes” within; when I do, good things seem to happen.

“Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you really love.” ~ Rumi

My new motto is that if it doesn’t bring me the same joy that a child would experience in a sandbox, don’t do it.

Want to give it a try? Let me know how it goes for you.

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