Updated: Jul 20, 2020
The short answer: Don't take life too seriously.
It’s so counter-intuitive, I know. But here's why...
Deep in the soul of humankind there is a desire for meaning, purpose, importance. And If you follow my social media and see my content, I am always helping people to find a deep spiritual purpose and go for it with passion and vigor. Yet, now I am telling you to do things which are not serious. Why?
This is important, chasing dreams, creating your individual purpose...but life is not just about you.
If you die today without having accomplished that lofty goal you set for yourself, nobody in Australia will cry for you, nobody in India will bow their head, people in South America won’t light candles for you.
My meaning is that the business of chasing purpose is a serious game.
Yes, a serious...game.
Because you trick yourself into self-importance.
The business man is always busy working and not living, to paraphrase Seneca. The business man's life exists in the future, about his business's growth. He/She is living each day in a haste of chasing what must be done next.
This way, we hold ourselves up in the light of who we must be to achieve our goals, care for your family, get the promotion…Never in the light of the sun, where from that stars perspective, you are another working ant, running around concerned only with itself.
The point is not to say that you are insignificant. The point is to not get too caught up in our own lives. We get entangled by our responsibilities. We identify life with my life, because we experience life always with the subjective lens...Yet, life exists without your experience of it.
In my instagram bio it says I help people create a purpose-driven life….and yes, this is what I do, because I have felt the abyss of meaninglessness first; meaning that I saw myself from the perspective of the universe...looking back at my microscopic self…. and laughed at my troubles, my endeavors, my dreams.
The serious man never returns from the abyss without a grin. Either he doesn’t return, or he returns laughing.
Everything was provincial, fleeting. I was playing the earnest game of seeking/achieving/obtaining. And I do want to help people create an authentic, purposeful, fulfilling life, but never at the cost of clarity, simplicity and light-hearted love of being alive.
One of the wonderful benefits of not taking things too seriously is that you will be let down less, because you are involved in the ongoings of the world but not attached to any specific outcome. If you are attached, you create anxiety trying to get there and fear that it won't happen. When you’re all too involved, not realizing life is a game, you’ll kill for your cause, because you are not sure of your purpose.
I’m going to end with a beautiful concept from philosopher, Alan Watts. He often compared the structures of human enterprise, such as transportation systems, the stock market, the internet...as a kind of dance of the universe. The movement is a playful thing, which sometimes hypnotizes us with its grandeur and complexity.
I am not telling you to withdraw from life like a monk. More like the joker: be involved, but be able to laugh at the world, and more importantly, at yourself.
I promise you, life will take on a new form when you stop holding yourself as the center of the universe. Stop being dead-serious, and begin looking at the world like a child again.