10 Life-Changing Purposeful Actions to Improve Your Life:
A teacher once related this tale from Alice in Wonderland. As Alice was walking along, she paused at a fork in the road. Beholding the Cheshire cat on a tree at the fork, Alice asked. “which way should I go?” The cat replied, “that depends upon where you want to go.” “I do not know,” said Alice. “Then it does not matter which way you go,” the cat purred slyly.
Over the years, students and Brook Seminar attendees have asked numerous questions about life. Many of the questions echo Alice’s dilemma about where she should be headed, or what she really wants. From these, we selected the 10 most commonly asked questions and 10 Life-Changing Purposeful Actions in response.
Act — don’t worry or fret. You will renew each of these actions as you go along. The sequence of the actions will depend upon the circumstances, including the actions of others over which you have no control. With these ten purposeful actions, your life will change for the better.
Unravel your desires and understand them.
Enjoy and satisfy your lust for life and material pleasures while retaining your core values. The objects of such desires will not last, so do not become attached to them. Move on to desires of the mind and spirit, whose fruits are enduring. By understanding your desires, you will flush out fear, destroy doubt and strengthen your resolve to live purposefully. You will discover what motivates you and learn what drives other travelers. As you do this, you will begin to realize what you really, really want !
Watch Video: What do you really want?
Read how Pete masters the four levels of desire in the chapters, More than Body and The Path of Duty.
Build a Vision for your life.
Do this by searching for the truth deep within — through Introspection, meditation or prayer — whatever works for you. Remember that you have a material and a spiritual life — an outer and an inner journey. Seek what you truly desire, starting with a healthy body, a clear mind and a pure spirit. Seek joy that lasts. Drink plenty of clean water, eat to live and enjoy, exercise your body, rest your mind often and seek the spark of the Force within you.
Watch Video: Where do you see yourself going?
Pete learns about Introspection in the chapters, Ashes and Resonance.
3. Where am I with respect to where I want to be?
Evaluate your situation.
This is Extrospection. Assess your situation realistically — see what separates you from your vision. Then, determine what it takes to get to where you want to go. Seek help if you need it. Adjust your vision to what you believe is achievable in your material and spiritual journeys. Limit expectations to what you truly desire and enjoy. Then you will strive for that for which you will be willing to sacrifice. This will create flow in your life.
Pete learns how to transform his life from chaos to purpose in the chapters, The Manuscript and The Rise of the Phoenix.
Form your mission and commit to it.
Your mission is to achieve your vision. This is at the heart of purposeful action and purposeful living. Commitment to your mission will give you purpose in life, making it meaningful and gratifying. It will add joy to your journey. You will require will and courage to get started on your way. Persistence should be your constant companion.
Pete learns about commitment in the chapter titled The Path of Duty.
5. How do I find my way?
Plan your journey and take the first step.
Keep your plan clear and simple. Let it show you the way to specific goals you can measure and assess. Each goal should serve a purpose — moving you closer to accomplishing your mission. Take one step at a time, continuing on the path to which you have committed. Make faith, hope, will and courage your companions. Enjoy each step. Get help from friends, family, teachers and other faithful travelers. Let mentors help you find the right currents for your journey and guide you through difficulties. Acquire data, information, knowledge and wisdom along the way. Learn to differentiate between them. Know that everything flows and changes. Create your flow and go with it.
Pete learns about the journey of life in the chapters, The Manuscript, Resonance and Experiencing Joe Sages. Then he plans his journey and pursues his mission in the chapters, A Game in the Waters, The Deal, and The Flight of the Arrow.
6. How do I stay on the way?
Carry a bag of positive core values.
Five positive core values for your physical and professional journey are Integrity, Commitment, Persistent, Teamwork and Communication. Their five spiritual counterparts are Truth, Love, Faith, Universality and Sharing.
Along the way, you will be tempted by negative currents. You will feel these through your senses, as they excite within you the desires of taking. These five negative currents will create impulses of Lust, Anger, Greed, Attachment and Arrogance. Overcome these, firmly, by allowing your positive values to guide you and clear the way for each step of your journey.
Pete finds the bag of five positive core values and another bag of five negative core values in the chapter, The Path of Duty.
7. How do I prosper materially?
Satisfy your material desires with purposeful actions and core values.
Pursue what you desire and enjoy, so long as the actions are purposeful and you maintain balance with the help of your core values. Be realistic — do not permit greed to inflate need. Satisfaction of your material needs will prepare you for the journey, and pave the way for your spiritual growth.
Pete learns this in the chapter, More than Body and The Path of Duty. Then he applies this knowledge in the chapters, The Flight of the Arrow and The Arrow Lands.
Grow spiritually with the spark, resonance and flow.
Believe that a spark of the Universal Force is within you. Recognize the spark in your fellow travelers. Experience the resonance that encompasses you, and go with the flow that your purposeful actions create. This will lead to compassion, sharing and giving, and eventually to understanding of the purpose of life. Prayer and meditation will help you recognize the spark.
Pete learns this in the chapter, Resonance, and experiences it in, The Reward. Ann discovers her Trinity in book, The Voice, the Mind and the Traveler.
9. How will I attain fulfillment?
Seek fulfillment through serving.
This is the Way of Karam Yoga – the Yoga of Action. This is the way that leads to freedom from the bonds of all desires. The Karam Yogi acts from within — not driven by the fruits of actions. When you are no longer attached to the objects of desire, you are free to help and serve others. This will make you fearless and free – to serve and achieve fulfillment. Without serving, there is no fulfillment!
Pete learns and experiences this in, A Game in the Waters and The Reward.
10. Is this really what I want?
Assess your progress and renew your journey.
Happiness and fulfillment are states of being — not destinations. They are your right so long as you are on the right way. You lose them if you lose your way. Continuously assess your progress towards your goals and mission. The Path of Karam Yoga — and Purposeful Action — is narrow and treacherous. You must renew your journey purposefully — attaining progressively higher levels of fulfillment. Transform knowledge gained from experience into wisdom for living purposefully and growing spiritually. Continue to go with the flow!
Pete learns about assessment in the epilogue, Mountains of Knowledge, Plateaus of Wisdom.
Ten Actions@ Ten Questions@ and the Twelve Steps of Purposeful Action@ are copyrighted, 2001, by Prem Chopra, all rights reserved. These “Actions,” “Questions” and “Steps” are adapted from lectures and books by Prem Chopra.