Enriching Our Experience

enrichmentI have come to realize that life is not so much about what we can do for ourselves, but rather, what we can do to enrich the experience of the collective. At the moment though, we seem to be a very self-absorbed society. How much money can I make for myself? How much wealth can I accumulate? How much stuff can I buy? How many toys can I own? It’s all me, me, me!

In the beginning, when we were first evolving, humans lived in tribes, and later, small villages. We were ‘community’ focused and everything was done for the collective. We lived altruistically and we made sure everyone was okay. We took care of one another. Our survival depended on it!

Then along came urbanization, industrialization and narcissism. We stopped thinking about each other and started thinking about ourselves. We didn’t care so much if others had to do without, so long as we had lots. When we saw a homeless or jobless person, to assuage our guilt, we gave him charity (which unwittingly kept him dis-empowered) and we went back to focusing on ourselves.

This way of living has gotten worse with each successive generation and it has been to our detriment; in our insatiable quest to accumulate we are very rapidly destroying the planet’s ability to sustain life.

It can’t continue!

Perhaps it was meant to be this way (I like to think, not). Perhaps this self-indulgent way of living is necessary in order for us to examine our behaviour, our priorities and our way of living. It seems that life is about contrasts … we need to experience one thing (usually something unpleasant) in order for us to appreciate something else.

Change is possible. We just need to re-prioritize.  We need return to our altruistic roots. We need to think collective and what each of us can do to enrich the experience of our village.

When you go to bed at night, ask yourself these questions:

  • Was I happy today
  • Was I kind
  • Was I helpful
  • Did I have positive thoughts
  • Did I speak positive words
  • Did I express gratitude
  • Did I act with integrity
  • Did I do my best
  • Did I reduce my carbon footprint
  • In all my actions, did I consider what was best for our ‘tribe’

If you can say yes to all of them, you can rest assured that you have contributed in a meaningful way. And in my personal experience you will feel far more fulfilled!

Have an awesomely enriching day!

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8 comments on “Enriching Our Experience

  1. This is timely and I have to say I feel really guilty today . As it is towards the end of Term in school we have lots to do. And a teacher came to me this afternoon, asking me if I could do something which she should have done previously and it is not my responsibility. I did it, which made me late with my work staying behind in the office. While I did it I was moaning and grumbling to myself about her being disorganised. I do think though I should have taken it and done it without moaning. I was helping her a lot with doing this and I hope tomorrow it will all work out for her because of my work. So I can actually feel proud. I didn’t moan to her but I think she realised that I was not happy. Still I can say I was helpful.
    As you can see it does bother me otherwise I wouldn’t tell you. I think I am a bit stressed, so early night, a bit of reflection and tomorrow start fresh!
    Thanks for listening Fred !

    • Hi Ute. Thank you for sharing. Sounds like this experience triggered some old wounds (which is actually a good thing, because it brings it into your conscious awareness so you can heal it).

      I think what you did was awesome and hopefully you will be acknowledged for it. It’s okay to help somebody out in such a situation, whether they thank you or not. As you said, even though it put you in a predicament, you know you were helpful. Perhaps the next time you won’t be able to help out knowing that it will make you late with your own work.

      I hope this is helpful.
      Cheers,
      Fred.

  2. I agree with what you say that society at large today has become very materialistic and ‘me’ orientated. One thing have learned over the last 2 years is how shallow that is. You offer a great list to live by. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I love this post! You nailed it spot on! Our world has become a “me” world instead of a “we” world and it is really sad. It is what causes all the madness because there are those will millions and billions that hoard it, and those on the street… If everyone was given the same baseline of everything we would be living in a world where there would be so much less envy which would create so much more peace.

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