Without A Finish Line
So, we now draw upon the closing of the year 2020 and all that became realized in relatively a short span of time. We will look back at what seems to be lke a blur. Similarly, we run or have watched runners race and it all passes by rather swiftly. This month, Balaka Ghosal shares another kind of race, one without a finish line (Part 2 of a 3 part series). May it anchor you in your New Year and all your days ahead.
As I fine tune my Ikigai pattern of a harmonious life, it looks more and more like the perfect four-leaf clover we yearn to see. In our hurry to balance the body, mind, and soul, we often overlook the invisible links that bond the lobed petals at the base.
The nuances of the mind take exposes my impatient, emotional, and sensual side that’s equally ready to be curious and sensitive to the not-so-perfect reality around me. The other stable side of my mind holds the ikigai steady, inviting me to think in intuitive and analytical ways.
That’s so human. It’s that slow and deep thought that makes us stand out of the animal kingdom and rise into the realms of higher perceptions and burst into our lyrical songs and our deepest scientific inquiries. Therein lies the harmony of the Ikigai that we dream to unfold within ourselves.
Haven’t we all marveled seeing a clover junction on a freeway as our flight begins its descent on a megacity? It’s a road-building enigma where freeways crisscross into knots like a bunch of noodles on a plate. And yet, none of the cars have to stop at a red light.
However, truth be told, traffic often builds us on these perfect intersections of our national highways. Why? What could lead to this blockage, you’d naturally wonder. That’s when I’m reminded of my bottlenecks that show up uninvited in my own thoughts. If each of the drivers were following all the rules of life, there would be no blockage. Yet, if there are errors, we get lost in the infatuations of the outer world of material desires? We cannot wipe them away with a thought-eraser. All we can do is divert them to a higher or lower plane. A craving for a cupcake may be distracted with some TV binging or a short brisk walk around the block while listening to a motivational audio clip. While watching TV may only defer the craving, drenching our thought into an elevated thinking lends the power to rise above the craving.
Our wants have become bigger and brighter than our needs. The desires morphed into greed or mindless craving. Even if we’re tired, we are hesitant to acknowledge it. Accepting it as an ongoing journey in life, both inside and outside, empowers the forward journey. A seemingly perfect system or design has ways of perfecting itself further till eternity. It is a strange mix of weariness and curiosity, the joy of growing and the relief of letting go of the old.
As the new year dawns on us after a tumultuous year of the pandemic, I’m feeling the call to pivot into perfecting my own ikigai, my energies smoothly flowing like the unhurried-yet-unstuck traffic. And I look forward to feeling lighter with a detachment from fear of losing out, replacing material stuff with faith, feeling the focus within to live closer to nature’s bounty. I am hopeful about my rising out of hopelessness, into a new mindset— lifting off to meet the future.
I’m ready to lean into my flow and enjoy the forward journey.