Atreya Thomas: Student Dialogue

-My purpose doesn’t seem clear.

Life is your purpose. Whatever is presenting in the moment is your purpose. The purpose is to be the space, the emptiness, that contains the various diversities and fluctuations of life, which contains the whole spectrum of your humanity.

-My life particularly does not feel very energizing or fulfilling. Does that mean I’m not fulfilling my purpose? Should I feel like I’m doing what I love?

If you love life, if you love the source, and it’s all life; what does it matter what you are doing?

-It matters because somethings are painful and others pleasant.

There is physical pain and pleasure which is built into the very nature of things, but “purpose” implies this mental tension and distress you have in the inability for psychological fulfillment, purpose, desire for validation and recognition; no?

-I do have chronic back pain and it’s annoying, but you are right that’s not my issue. Rather, I could clearly see that I want things in life to be a certain way, recognition, wealth, peace, control over things, health. And I wish to share the spiritual teachings that I have; not having all this frustrates me.

So perhaps this is not about life’s purpose which is spontaneous, ever-changing, ever present and dynamic. Rather, you seek your own purpose which is static, fixed, partial and narrow. You are always going to clash with life’s purpose in this manner because a static vision is always partial and will get mowed down eventually by the rest of life. There is another way. Give your little self up and die into life’s purpose which is always here, now pressing upon you in spite of your particular vision and really doesn’t require your input but only your allegiance. Experiment and take the risk to surrender and you may discover your greatest purpose within life’s purpose.