- Wednesday, 19 October 2011
Back in History class “Manifest Destiny” referred to the United States’ 19th century belief that they had the right to expand into the entire North American continent. It wasn’t policy, just an idea bounced around at the time. Once I learned the phrase in school, the two words seem to belong together. But I wondered, once so used, can we take that phrase out of the realm of history and move it into the realm of Soul and expect it to mean something else? Have you ever wondered if you have a “manifest destiny” for your life and your soul? I know I have. According to Caroline Myss, simply asking the question, “What is my purpose or destiny?” is an act that invokes and engages spirit and changes your life from automatic to manual where you are suddenly awake and engaged in the path of your soul. Asking, “What is my purpose?” creates an alchemical reaction in your life of soul proportions!
If you break it down, “manifest” means to make clear and obvious and “destiny” is your preordained fate or future. Therefore, on a personal level, manifest destiny is a belief that we have a predetermined fate and that it will somehow become clear to us. And if we could only crack the code, we would know what to do, to choose or to be.
I have a lot of problems with this and if you have been actively working on your soul and personal growth you might be grappling with this too. Pop culture loves to speak of our destiny. We see this in the simple over-use of the term, “soul mate” as the one mate that we are destined to meet and with whom we will spend our lives if we want to live in alignment with our soul. We wonder what are we meant to do in life, and with whom are we meant to be? We speak freely of our purpose and the “one thing” we are here to accomplish in our life as if it is already fated and fixed.
This brings up questions for me. Does it for you too? If everything in life is predestined, then why dream, why set goals, and why change goals when we feel we’re on the wrong path? Where is there room to grow and to learn? Is there even “a path” or is the path waiting for us to forge it? I’m open to new ideas in this regard but for now I think life is one big classroom experiment for our souls. And with any good teacher, our teachers allow us to try things out, learn, experiment and make good choices based on what we have learned. Continuing in the classroom analogy, I like to think that our teachers have a lesson plan for us that was developed with our input in this “open classroom concept” called life, but once we are born, once we enter the classroom, we forget what the plan is and we are left to figure things out for ourselves. Do we have a single purpose? I like to think we have many possibilities, and they may have an overarching goal, like “to work with forgiveness” or “expand kindness in the world” but we, above all else, have free will to choose how this will be accomplished. So while we can have a general plan for our lives, our prime directive is to “choose” well; to learn and to grow. And the key word is “choose”. We can create the world according to our thoughts, so what will we choose to think? What will we create? And even though I like to think there is a lesson plan, what if there is no plan other than to see what you can create with your thoughts? What if we had the total freedom to be and life was one big thought experiment? Could you stand that? Do you need a purpose?
So how will you choose to follow your destiny, if your destiny is only a suggestion, not a fixed plan? What will you do to manifest your life path in the world, once you have chosen it? Will you let go of the victim mentality that is the opposite of the notion of free will? Will you start to believe that in every day, in every moment, you can choose, you can always begin again? Will you release the attitudes that keep you stuck, thinking that where you are is your ultimate “destiny”? Will you release the belief that your destiny has to be your job? We don’t all have to be healers or work in the healing/personal growth field to live soulfully. A single act of kindness to someone who is on the brink can be more powerful than all the healing sessions in the world! Your manifest destiny is right before you, but it is the one that you choose, and choose again; day in and day out with your thoughts and your intentions. What will you choose to do today to grow your soul?