Inspiration for a new year …

I’m reading a wonderful book, thanks to my blogging buddy, Claire, at Word by Word.  It’s called The Hidden Lamp and it’s comprised of “storiesRabindranath Tagore from twenty-five centuries of awakened women.”  I’ve had it for a couple of weeks, but only really started to read it seriously last night.  And am I glad I did.

No sooner did I start the first chapter, than I was greeted by this poem, by Rabindranath Tagore:

“I slept and dreamt that life was joy.

I awoke and found that life was duty.

I acted and behold, duty was joy.”

Magnificent, yes??  And oh-so-inspiring.  At least I think so.

The author of the particular story, the first in the book, tells of how she came across the poem and what it meant to her.  She said:  “They captured a longing I had for a life that was all of a whole — what I called at the time, being fully human.”  Mmmmmm … I love that.

Being fully human.

It’s what we all long for, I think.  Whether or not we’re aware of it.

For me, as I sit here mere hours away from the end of one year and the start of a new one, “being fully human” means something very different than it did when I was younger.  It will continue to evolve, I am sure, I hope as I do, but for now it means being authentic … and allowing only those who are also authentic into my life.  I find I have little interest in, or little tolerance for bullshit, for posers, for those who tell you what they think you want to hear — not what is the truth or what’s in your best interest.

Now I am interested only in those who return my affection in the spirit and in the openness in which I give mine.  Those who hold nothing back. Again, no impostors or pretenders.  Suddenly life is too short to waste even a moment.

Being fully human.

My ambitions are very different at this time of my life as well.  I’m ready to embrace and accept what I have and be satisfied.  My ‘wants’ are becoming simpler.

Being fully human.

Most of all, to find joy in all I do.  To get — from what I do for a living — the fulfillment, the peace and the pleasure I get from volunteering, and helping others in general.  What’s being fully human for you?

Wishing you all the very best for 2014.  Thanks for reading, for coming back time and and time again, for following and for taking the time to share your thoughts.

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25 thoughts on “Inspiration for a new year …

  1. Just brilliant, I love how this koan spoke to you so immediately and I can’t help but read it and think of my own latest read about a woman botanist, who pursues her obsession in life (mosses) and wonders if it is a selfish pursuit and then realises it is her gift to the world.

    It is that thing about enjoying our work before realising the benefit it might have for others, that awareness of doing for others necessarily comes later in life – first one must nurture the passion, albeit selfishly. You’ve been nurturing your passions for a long time Fransi and many have learned this from you I am sure :) I certainly have, in the short time I have known you.

    Bon bout d’an et à l’an qué ven!
    (as they say in here in Provence – Happy End of Year and the Year that’s coming)

    Happy New Year :)

  2. :) Fully human: when obstacles or pain arise knowing it’s not the end of the world. I’m working on that! Happy New Year Fransi and it sounds like you’re becoming more the genuine you every day!

  3. Sounds like a great book! I love that quote, the second time I’ve seen it recently…Yes to being fully human, being fully ourselves, authentic, open-hearted, living our lives to the fullest, whatever that may look like for each of us! Blessings on this new year!

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