Amma is a living enlightened Being. Learn more at Amma.org.
How To Build An Intentional Life
As a coach, clients and friends will often seek my counsel. While each of their challenges appears to be unique, I believe many of the problems, especially the recurring ones, stem from one simple idea: We have yet to release the past, forgive everything, and construct new, durable personas (temporary self-identities) – ones that can establish and sustain an enjoyable, stable life.
Instead of plunging into forward movement, we tend to repeatedly reaffirm the past and go in circles.
We can change this. We can recreate our lives with the purest, clearest, and most focused intentions. Living an intentional life is not for everyone, but it’s the only path to liberation and peace.
Even amid being pummeled by karmic repercussions that stem from prior lives, if we establish a strong and deeply rooted self-concept, we can withstand any storm.
Let’s Dive In!
From the moments of our births, we begin to build temporary self-identities or personas to maneuver through our lives. These personas are most often born from outdated beliefs, confused family dogma, codependent social paradigms, and limiting religious doctrine. Along the way, we weave guilt, shame, and regret into the fabric of our personas to the point of imprisoning ourselves in loops of repeated behaviors, decisions, and addictions.
Because of this, most of us live as if we’re strapped to rollercoasters, whereby we continuously react to external stimuli as if we have no control. In the short term, we enjoy the results of our impulses. In the long term, we find ourselves in complex situations that erode our senses of Self and peace.
Over time, consequences and complications emerge. We cope, medicate, and try to assemble a quick-fix response to it all.
We try everything but eventually find that quick fixes do little to address the deeper issues. We look at every aspect of our lives and realize that our marriages, jobs, and environments are not aligned with who we know ourselves to be.
In a moment, we understand that we are not self-aware, and therefore, we are not free.
This is the moment of decision.
Do we continue to shrink and hide or do we choose the road less traveled, finally embracing our true Self?
If we choose the latter, we begin to wake up!
We soon feel or sense deep-seated emotions and regrets. We might feel anxious or panicked, feeling unable to source remedies. We finally see the weight that we’ve amassed atop our souls. We remember the stories and justifications we used to keep our outdated personas in charge and in motion for so long.
In a pure moment of delight, we decide enough is enough!
Intentional Spiritual Living is a decision and commitment of the mind and heart to live a fully conscious, pre-meditated life according to our deepest values, ethics, and beliefs, without story or excuse.
We build an intentional life through self-inquiry, ritual, ceremony, and forgiveness. We own and acknowledge every aspect of our choices amid our tumultuous lives. We own it all – from every teensie bit of minutia to every decision we’ve made.
We take responsibility for EVERYTHING.
We blame NO ONE.
Beginning an intentional life often comes with a year or more of crying a few hours every day. It requires complete transparency with our core Self, God, and the eternal consciousness. We can no longer hide. We refuse to hide. We are now on a mission to unearth every truth about ourselves and the nature of the Universe.
We begin to imagine a new persona, one that is built upon virtue, transparency, vulnerability, and truth. We no longer carry regret or shame. We no longer blame. We own it all – every molecule of every instant.
We process it all, pounding the earth in anger and crying for every lost moment. We cry to God and the Universe to nurture and save us. We do this until we are drained of all projection, attitude, and ego. We realize we know nothing and we are nothing.
From there, we build our new, more durable, more holy persona – not from the rubble, rather, from the truths we’ve uncovered and become.
We grow our personas into emotionally, psychologically, and financially stable warriors – through whatever means. With meditation, mantra, and Divine grace, we begin to strengthen and stabilize.
We continually release emotions, attachments, and the past.
“The past is a canceled check. It no longer exists.” – Amma
After some time, we realize that we’ve become warriors of self-care, self-responsibility, and self-awareness.
Having built an intentional spiritual persona, we can now build an intentional spiritual life.
How Do We Do This?
- We are careful welcoming people into our lives
- With a new friend, we are careful when choosing to engage in sex. While sex is certainly wonderful, it can be distracting and harmful. Get to know your friends before jumping into bed with them.
- We are careful before solidifying a marriage. According to the rishis, it is best to know and live with someone for 3 years prior to committing to a marriage.
- We carefully research and plan job and home changes
- We don’t “jump” into anything, instead, we pause, reflect, and consider
- We refrain from feeding our addictions
- Less screen time and more prayer time
- We pray as often as we can
- We continuously have faith hope
- We forgive everything
- We own everything
- We do not dwell on our negative feelings
- We remember that we are never a victim
- We work to completely dissolve our egos
- We choose our food carefully (organic, grass-fed, no chemicals, lots of greens and vegetables)
- When we are able, we strive to find the balance between western medicine and naturopathic medicine, knowing that pure food is our best medicine
- We realize our thoughts sustain us, so we choose them carefully
- We learn to place our attention on aspects that truly serve and uplift us because we know what we contemplate is what we become. Mediate on the rose and you become the rose.
- We realize that our self-esteem can only come from ourselves
- We decide to be happy because happiness is a choice
- We say goodbye to people and events that do not serve our liberation and peacefulness
- We say goodbye to deep attachments, except GOD & THE DIVINE
- We have boundaries
- We only speak lovingly about ourselves
- We stop all projection
- We maintain a healing attitude
- We find ways to selflessly love and serve others while also not hurting ourselves
- We root ourselves in self-inquiry, honesty, and love
- You might enjoy releasing processes and modalities like The Sedona Method (search it, it’s awesome)
- When we’re ready, we can seek out living enlightened masters like Amma, Karunamayi Ma, and Mother Meera
- We can ask to receive a mantra from one of them
- We can ask Her to be our guru or spiritual master which can expedite our pathway to liberation.
- If we feel so inclined, we honor the purest and most non-judgmental tenets of our birth religions
- We enjoy our birth masters, including Jesus, Buddha, Mohammad, and others
IN ALL THINGS, PLEASE KNOW …
You are more than you realize. You have resources far beyond your wildest imagination. It’s time to commit to a more eternal game. It’s time to release it all and become your most vibrant, eternal, and empowered Self. SURrender!
As you reach toward liberation, you might want to explore having a coach, guide, or therapist to help you along your path. In the meantime, meditate, pray, and chant with loving attention toward the divine.
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