By Gwendoline Ford
In this article I refer to the soul as a sacred spark in your psyche where your highest potential exists, ready to guide you in your life purpose. I believe we all have the possibility for greatness in our lives. We don’t need to be a Prime Minister, a celebrity, a millionaire, or the Australian of the Year to be the greatest we can be. We don’t need the approval of others. Instead, we need our own approval, and we usually achieve this self-approval by fulfilling our soul yearnings for authenticity, responsibility and gratitude.
We will all experience a time in our lives when our soul will need to hibernate as we battle through obstacles in life. Being authentic may not be practical when we hate our job with a passion, but we have bills to pay so we feel trapped. Being responsible may fall on deaf ears when we don’t want to be told about our responsibilities – it is much easier to play the blame game. Being grateful is hard when we want more out of life, and what we have seems like nothing in comparison to our desires.
In these moments we will find our soul shut off from us as it withdraws deep into our psyche to rest. Our soul is not interested in us whinging about how much we hate our jobs as we invest all our energy into passive aggressive acts with co-workers. Our soul is not interested in playing the blame game – after all, who wants to be in the same room as someone who continues to blame their mother for every poor decision they have made since adolescence. Our soul is not interested in ungrateful attitudes as it does not feel at home in an envious heart.
How do we know our soul has hibernated? Simple – our life lacks meaning. What does this mean? Well, we could be in a room full of people and yet feel terribly alone. We could look into the eyes of our partner and feel no connection. We could wander through the streets of our town and feel no direction. We drift. We float. We plod. We lose. We struggle.
In this meaningless time there exists an opportunity in our life development to truly experience the despair of not living a life that is authentic, that lacks responsibility, and is ungrateful. Without experiencing this meaninglessness we will never truly appreciate the power we have on our quality of life. Even in conditions that try the resilience of the human spirit, we still can be authentic, responsible and grateful. These qualities do not necessarily lead to wealth, fame, a sexy body – and everything else this modern age tells us should matter… instead, these qualities lead us back to ourselves so that we can become complete and whole.
Awaken the Soul
When we have had enough of this meaninglessness we can start to “awaken the soul” and stir it from its hibernation. If we remember that it is authenticity, responsibility and gratitude which can soothe our soul out of its deep sleep and bring it to the surface, then we will know what we need to do to awaken the soul and reconnect with life again in a meaningful way.
To be authentic means to live a life that reflects who we truly are as a person. If we do not know who we are, then we can start by living a life that “just feels right” to us. Someone that is authentic shares their thoughts openly and honestly in a positive and constructive way. Someone that is authentic chooses their approval, as opposed to the approval of others. Someone that is authentic is warm and accepting of others as they are. Someone that is authentic loves and accepts themselves as they are. You have an instinctive desire for authenticity – listen to your heart and follow it wherever it leads you.
To be responsible is to accept that only you have the power to change the way you think, the habits you form, and the choices you make. Each choice you make reflects who you as a person, so choose wisely. Someone that is responsible accepts their role in conflict and disharmony and works to remedy and heal it. Someone that is responsible responds positively to people, events and things – and does not play the blame game. Someone this is responsible understands that they are in control of their life and the choices they make. Someone that is responsible is an adult and does not behave like a child. Responsibility is a natural part of being an adult, and helps to reflect who you are as a person.
To be grateful is to recognise and appreciate all that you have in life is a blessing. We all have so much to be grateful for – and those living in Australia should be well aware of this and how fortunate we are. When we are grateful we look at what we have and what we can share with others. A grateful heart is a heart bursting with abundance – the more it gives, the more it receives. Someone that is grateful is free from envy, greed and bitterness. Someone that is grateful is generous. Someone that is grateful does not recognise lack, but rather focuses on the fruits of their life. Gratitude is the most powerful prayer of thanks you can perform.
Authenticity, responsibility and gratitude – when embraced and practiced in mind and body, soon awakens the soul and we will find its presence radiating an inner life force within us. We soon find ourselves more accepting of situations and others, even if these situations and people are not positive in nature. We are also able to develop a vision for our life, and have the motivation to move towards it. An awakened soul is a soul that is connected with All That Is, and works with us to achieve our highest potential on this earth. It acts as our guide and mentor – but, more importantly, a friend. A soul when awake is what gives us meaning, but before we can appreciate this meaning we must be willing to experience the hibernation of the soul.