Thursday, February 10, 2011

Humbled by New Thoughts on Greed

"We suffer, often unknowingly…from wanting to experience more than one person can. This is a form of greed, of wanting everything…But being human, we can't have it all. The tension of all this can lead to an insatiable search, where our passion for life is stirred but never satisfied. When caught in this mindset, no amount of travel is enough, no amount of love is enough, no amount of success is enough. 
…Greed is not restricted to money. It can work its appetite on anything. When we believe we are behind or less than, we somehow start to want more than we need…as if the thing we haven't tasted will be the thing to bring us alive. The truth is that one experience taken to heart will satisfy our hunger to be loved by everyone."
The Book of Awakening, Mark Nepo
February 8

For almost two years now, I've adopted (and more importantly, stuck to) starting off each day with reading something that stretches me and, when time permits, writing about it. Most days I am lucky to be just a little bit more inspired, or perhaps sent deeper into contemplation about a particular topic or idea. But some days I read something that strikes a chord of profound relevance in my life. Some days I am left rattled - like reading an eerily accurate horoscope even though I'm not big on astrology or somehow picking just the right fortune cookie with a message that seems like it was written for me alone.

Yesterday was one of these rare moments, and I can't shake the discomfort that the new perspective has evoked in me.

Lately, life has left me in a state of elation. I have been feeling so fortunate and blessed and have begun to finally feel the trickling of affirmation from some of the very difficult decisions I've made over the past two years. I have an awesome support system - family both locally and remote who I am fortunate enough to be very close with. I have friends, old and new, who encourage me, and I keep meeting new and amazing people who inspire me. I am involved in music. Singing, which has always brought me joy and had previously no outlet, has been integrated as a weekly practice and I routinely have the opportunity to perform publicly. I have an amazing job that I love, and I get to work with smart and passionate people on a great product every day.  I am literally in the best shape of my life. Health, fitness and lifestyle goals that date as far back as high school have been met and exceeded. It seems like every day I learn I am capable of doing something I previously never would have tried - the most obvious example would be doing a heavy lift or 40 perfect ring dips - but this experience has extended beyond the gym. All these things have invoked an excitement and urge for more. Do more, experience more, live more, love more, laugh more…the list goes on.

The Feb. 8th reading in 'Awakening' has paused me. In the moments when life was feeling heavy, ambiguous, and full of burden I often had to remind myself to 'just be'. This meant being present - not distracted by past or future but available in the current moment.

Being human, we can't have it all.

What if, rather than pushing, striving, and driving for more, I took some time to sit back and enjoy the present? What if what I have, who I know, what I can do, and how I feel right now is enough?

When I really think about it, it's actually more than enough.