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Everyone wants to know where they are going: what’s the end point, what’s the direction? So we drive ourselves in goals around clarity and focus, determination and progress marked on external yard posts that we’ve been taught to trust. And because we are all asking the same questions, we think we can compare everyone’s results. We drive down a street and point to successful people’s houses and wonder what they have that we don’t.

But then I saw this:

But do not ask me where I am going,
As I travel in this limitless world,
Where every step I take is my home.
Dogen

…And it got me thinking. What if our only goal was to make change our home, to be so centred in ourselves that no matter what the whirligig of life threw at us, we knew we could be okay? What if we lived our life to attain that strength? What would life be then?

I can’t help but think we would pin ourselves less to the material. To me, surrounding ourselves with the material is to try to create a form of stasis. To me, it issues forth a statement that, no matter what the winds of change bring, ‘I shall be in my castle and all shall be exactly as I planned it. I shall know where everything is and how it should be and I have the power to make it so.’

But surely if wherever I am is home, then all those trimmings are unnecessary. Surely then all the comfort is housed in me: the ability to relax, to take off masks, to find a soft spot upon which to rest my head. Perhaps then, the most important thing is your own wellbeing so that you can set your home down next to someone else, to find the right neighbours for each part of the path.

And certainly expectations and the status quo would have no part to play in any considerations. Dreams, yes. Ambitions, yes. But differences would be so commonplace that there could be no way success could be measured in material things. I wonder if we would release the need to have hit certain life milestones by certain ages….

I saw the quote and I couldn’t help but
think it was a healthier goal for which to strive.

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