A deep sense of positive commitment is a powerful weapon against ill-health. When you commit wholly to something meaningful to you, it is transcendental meditation. To transcend means to become free of negative attitudes, thoughts or feelings that limit what you can achieve.
You transcend from stress to serenity, from mediocrity to magic. “Meaning makes many things endurable — perhaps everything,” says Jung.
You take on an activity. It gives you a kick. It’s fun. It’s exciting. It’s absorbing. Then in walks love. It becomes a commitment. Yes, finding the activity that turns on your light is great. What’s really huge though, is the awakening of your ability, the nurturing of your capacity to commit. It is this ability, this capacity that keeps you hardy, that keeps you in the land of the healthy.
A sculptor diagnosed with cancer in 1990, underwent two surgeries and intensive drug therapy. Finally, he was told he hadn’t long to live. Fortunately, he met a physician who combined prayer and medicine.
The physician prescribed a simple mantra to be repeated all day, “Lord, thank you for my life.” The sculptor put the same commitment that he’d put in the long hours of sculpting, to chanting. Soon he stopped all painkillers, became alert and three months later went home, determined to sculpt again.
He did — for seven more sweet years.Commitment is imprinted in our soul. If we weren’t deeply-committed to living, we wouldn’t be breathing.
We can do a hundred things mechanically, but if we don’t do even one task with commitment as if it be our very calling, then we’ve not lived at all. To commit, is to connect to our highest self which then floods us with the voltage to live fully.
My advice: commit yourself to being the master of your own destiny. Life is not only about finding a purpose, it is about creating one. When a magazine editor was completely paralysed by a stroke, he committed himself to using one part of him that was still free to roam anywhere without restraint — his imagination.
In his book The Diving Bell and the Butterfly , which he dictated by blinking his left eye at an alphabet, he writes, “My mind takes flight like a butterfly. There is so much to do. You can wander off in space or in time, set out for Tierra del Fuego or for King Midas’ court.” Two days after his book was published and became an instant bestseller, he left his body on the wings of a celestial butterfly. Some suggestions to find or create your purpose:
Make space for something new to enter your life. Decline frivolous demands, tedious invitations, useless activities.
nPractise being committed. The best two activities to commit yourself to are: exercise and meditation. Being active and powerful at peace enhances the purposeful feeling. You tackle old stuff with new verve too.
nTake time daily to reflect on these questions: “If I didn’t have any responsibilities, what are the things I’d do? If I had nothing to lose, in what direction would I move?”
Then stay silent and still. Enjoy slow breaths, feel the air enter your nostrils, your stomach rising and falling. You’ll get an answer — a memory that stirs and rises from your subconscious of an offer you’d ignored, a dream dreamt, a vague fleeting thought that crystallises. When the heart opens, life opens manifold.
(The authors have penned the book Fitness For Life.)