While Gandhi was alive, he was trying to make us understand that: “There is more to life than increasing its speed.” But I guess not too many people listened because look where we are today. We are moving faster than ever and we are busier than we have ever been. We are moving so fast, that we rarely have any time left to enjoy the things we are doing and the life we are currently living.
We are always rushing. Constantly wanting to get someplace else, and wanting to do so as faster as possible. We move so fast and we do so much, taking so much pride in our busyness, when in fact I don’t know if that’s something we should be proud of.
What’s there to be proud of?
That we are living our lives as if we are machines; that we are working so much that we barely have any time left to connect with ourselves, the people we love and the world around us? That we have lost touch with ourselves and we have no clue what’s going on inside of us; that we made everything in this world so complicated and as a result, became allergic to simplicity?
A Course in Miracle talks about this, explaining to us that “Complexity is the ego”, while the simplicity of the Soul, of course. And Leonardo da Vinci said it so beautifully with these words: “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”
Nowadays, people don’t seem to enjoy simple things anymore. They like everything to be complex and difficult. And because of that, they make themselves so unhappy and they make their lives a lot harder, which is crazy.
The many wise men and women that lived before us knew these things, and Henry David Thoreau was one of them. Telling us that:
“As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler; solitude will not be solitude, poverty will not be poverty, nor weakness weakness.”
Life taught me to value quality over quantity, simplicity over complexity. And because of that, I am a lot happier today than I used to be. Valuing the things that have real value, and not those who have artificial value.
Who cares about titles, about rewards and awards, and about how many people envy you for the stuff you have and for your complex and perfect looking life when you yourself are dying on the inside. Feeling depleted, exhausted, and totally disconnected from who you once were? Who cares if you’re number one in your field and if the whole world thinks you’re a success when your friends and family barely see you, and when they do, you’re too busy thinking about the many things that you have to DO to even pay attention to them.
“Beware the barrenness of a busy life.” ~ Socrates
What kind of life is this? Where we are constantly chasing more of everything. Paying little or no attention to those people, things, and experiences that truly matter, because we are too busy with staying busy? And because we have become the slaves of our work, our urges, and of all those many things we are chasing after? Is that really what success is all about? I doubt that.
“Being successful means having a balance of success stories across the many areas of your life. You can’t truly be considered successful in your business life if your home life is in shambles.” ~ Zig Ziglar
We are human BEings, not human DOings. We aren’t meant to DO, and DO, and DO, until there’s no life left in us. We are meant to BE, because that’s what we are, human BEings, not human DOings.
“We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical. Our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost….”
We are not machines. We are people whose hearts long for connection; whose Souls crave for love and for meaning. We are people with feelings, and all the stuff, the power, and all the money in the world could never give our hearts and souls the things that they need and crave for.
We are not machines.
You are not a machine. I am not a machine, nor do I want to be one. I am a human BEing. A person who has a heart that needs to give love so that it can feel alive. And a Soul that needs to create meaningful things in order to survive.
We weren’t born to DO. We were born to BE. We were born to be at peace, to be grateful, to be happy, to be love – loved and loving; We were born to enjoy the things we create and the life we are living; We were born to enjoy ourselves and to it with grace, and patience; We were born to connect with one another. To share our presence, our beauty, our greatness, and our unique and precious gifts with one another.
We were born to be unique and authentic individuals, not a cheap copy of everyone else; We were born to live according to our own rules. To follow the guidance of our hearts and souls, and to only do the things that in our hearts feel right for us, not to blindly follow the rules of other people, people who only care about their own selfish needs and desires. And who want us to think that we need to work hard in order for us to regain our freedom.
“Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset.” ~ Saint Francis de Sales
It’s not the busyness of our lives that make our lives valuable, but rather the level of inner peace, joy and presence that determine the value of our lives. If there is peace within you, if you are joyful and content, things will flow easily without affecting the quality of your relationships, your health and well-being. And that’s what makes a life valuable.
Don’t let this mad world make you think that in order for you to “make a name for yourself”, and in order for you to “become somebody”, you have to work very hard and you have to stay so busy that you forget who you are, and whether the many things you are doing have any meaning or not.
You already have a name, and you already are somebody. And your value will never ever come from how much you do, how make you have, and how many people envy you for the “perfect life” you are living. Your value will never come from busy you are and how much you do on a regular basis. Because that’s not where your real value resides, and deep down inside you know this to be true.
“Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going too fast – you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.” ~ Eddie Cantor
When the time will come for you to leave this planet, looking back at your life, you won’t regret not DOing more, but rather feeling more. You will not regret not working more, but rather not connecting, not loving and not enjoying life more… Think of these things. And never ever allow the silly rules of other people to enslave you, and to take away your freedom. The freedom to BE, to feel, to love and to connect.
When somebody asks you: “How are you?”, do you tell them how, and what you feel, or do you start telling them about how busy your life is? You can share your insights in the comment section below 🙂