Dear Why Team member,
I hope this week’s message finds you safe, sound and encouraged.
Take comfort that our collective Will, will find the Way - and of course there is always much to learn on the journey.
This week we ask:
Why Consider Our Lifetime Work.
Let’s face it, there is always good work to do. As a child growing up, I learned very early on, that if I was at a loss for what to do, that doing something productive was almost never a bad choice; when in doubt, clean something; it has a meditative aspect to it if you’re mindful of your thoughts. Activities that require little brain power give room for contemplation. While I am a fan of mindfulness in the classic upright sitting posture, I am a bigger fan of developing mindfulness when actively getting things done. In the famous book “Make your bed”, Admiral William McRaven encourages readers to start the day with the small action of making their bed. Each chapter, despite being less than 3 pages long, is packed with daily positive habits for health and mind.
My wiring loves accomplishment and progress, no matter what it may be. I would rather fall forward than not move forward at all and during this time of quarantine, I have found no loss for something productive to do. How about you?
Over the last two weeks we have explored living a Yes-life and how we are all facing “No” more than ever - we considered to what we are saying “Yes”.
This week we consider our work of a lifetime, the opportunity in every rising moment to live more fully in gratitude and to notice the thoughts that are running through our minds, the stories, the narratives and to simply ask:
“How’s it all working?”
If your view of life isn’t serving you well, if you find yourself more upset than filled with joy, consider a change in your view. It would be wonderful if we could prepare the road for a smooth ride, but since the road is rarely smooth, maybe it’s best to prepare ourselves for the road - no matter how we may find it. It’s always our choice: to be upset and complain about the hand we are dealt, or focus our energies on how best to play it.
You have likely heard the stories of those who became more awake about their life in the final moments of their life. I initially thought of this as death-time-work, but realized that death IS a part of life and that the best work of a Lifetime has to include consideration of our death. Are not our lives all the more precious because they end? Could keeping this awareness actually improve our appreciation for life? Absolutely!
Many live the ancient teaching of Memento Mori, which is Latin for “remember you must die”.
I found the below words, for us to consider, from someone at deaths door:
“Time is so precious. God, it's precious...”
Maybe some of the best work of our Life(time) is work that keeps us aware of our eventual Death(time)!
Dr. Elko tells the story of a woman who was given a month to live. After 2 weeks, her husband found the courage to ask her how does it feel knowing she’s dying? Her response to him is perplexing: How does it feel pretending that you’re not?
This week consider your view of your life and how it’s working for you.
How may you improve your view? Could living Memento-Mori lead to less sweating of the small stuff?
What awakening could come so much sooner for you?
Look at the benefit to Scrooge when he got to see his own grave?
Why is he remembered for who he was before the visit of the spirits rather than for who he became after?
We only got a glimpse of his becoming. What would “Scrooge 2 - The Awakened One” have revealed? Is it not those who have had near death experiences that often become gurus for how best to live?
Yes, life can be very hard work, but when we reflect on how much worse it could be, on how we do have today and that tomorrow is promised to no one - maybe we might lift our attitude all the more to lighten our mental load. The work of a Lifetime? To remember how precious life is, live more in gratitude and work even harder to not waste a minute of it.
Make it a great week!