I 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!