Uncovering Your Inspiration in the Present Moment (Location: Global)

I’m traveling.  I’m in the middle of nowhere, say the Indian countryside in the heat of the monsoon.

I’m soaked, damp, wet, sticking with my own fluids and gritty under a haze-laden sun.  Or maybe I’m in Nepal, trekking alone within the Himalayas.  A snowstorm descends upon me and I’m instantly lost, wandering from the trail by the blinding white winds.

This is the present moment.  This is the only situation that exists.

You’re in it, alone or accompanied, and it’s what you’re experiencing.  Whatever the circumstances might be, you have access to inspiration, you have the key to its discovery.

What do you need?  You need nothing.  You are the experience and the experiencer.  But inevitably your energy is zapped, and life suddenly teeters on a ledge.  One side leaning towards life and the other down into an unfathomable abyss.  You’re not ready for the latter, so you breathe.

This is your inspiration.

The root of the word inspiration originates from Latin: inspiration(n-).  The noun forms from its verb inspirare, which has two meanings:

First, it is that imaginary force of mental stimulation luring toward the potentials of illimitable creativity.  Second, inspiration is simply the drawing in of the breath.  In other words: to inhale and fill the lungs with air.

Breath is the key to life.  With each observed inhale, our awareness is renewed and deepened.  We honor the present moment and whatever situation we find ourselves in.  Equipped with breath and awareness, the fundamentals of our internal search are created and the tools for life and inspiration are in our hands.

Every morning we rise from our beds, glide upon our weighted feet, with the potential to pursue further, harder, deeper and with more conviction into each day’s possibilities.

This force of mental stimulation is inspiration – as real as your own skin and as impermanent as your own bitten nails.  It is the drive toward maximum creativity into that which you live for and that which you thrive upon.

But then suddenly it’s gone.

Drained, we find ourselves rummaging our own streets and into the debris in our pockets, wondering how we accidentally threw this force out the window.

If we grasp it too hard, if we claim it as ours and only ours, a slap in the face will remind us that inspiration is a fine balance.  When we have something in our possession and then lose it, we realize its importance, how necessary it was to carry and sustain us among our life’s journey.

Without inspiration, we come to believe we’re lost, stuck in the swamp of mind’s banality.

Suddenly, we realized we stopped breathing.

There comes a soft ticking to our ears.  It’s gentle, peaceful amidst the cacophony, subtly resounding within our body.  The blood feels it.  Our heart vibrates as the arteries contract and dilate.  Within our observance, the awareness returns to the source of this heart’s beat and we’re breathing once more.

Our breath, the awareness.  Hello present moment.

No map is good or bad.  There isn’t one out there with the capability of leading us to how we uncover our own inspiration.  But here’s one to chew on:

You’re at the center of your being; breathing, living, recognizing the moment in your life directly before you.  It’s a piece of art.  It’s nature and the solemn mountains in your backyard.  It’s the smile on your child’s face and the beauty within the pages of your tattered book.

Whatever it is, wherever you are, your present moment is the inspiration, and as you watch your breath and become aware of its life-giving force, the pumping of the heart stimulates the mind.

By letting go of everything else but the present moment, creativity is at your fingertips.

While embarking on a new business idea, a new relationship, or exploring the damp, dank corners of India, these are the experiences that force you to stop and touch your inspiration: inhale and live.

The mind is the pick, the heart the hammer, and they chisel as one, directing your will into the vastness of creativity that lies within your soul.  The hammer and the pick—these are yours to explore and discover.

The Art of Spiritual Travel (Location: Your Soul)

You’re at home.  Priorities, concerns, handling of money and dealing with the collection of physical accoutrements placed before you.  You observe life, you fall into it, and then suddenly one day a choice presents itself.

You feel a desire to leave everything: your work, your friends, your life behind.  It is the inevitable moment of choice: shall you choose the same rigorous routine, or a whole new dream, unknown and only imagined.

Which will you push aside?

There was the time in my life when the choice arose.  I remember it specifically: I could have shrugged my shoulders and assumed that playing the role of a “normal” life is what I had been selected to play; or I could have instead dropped everything and disregarded the responsibilities that beckoned me into a deepening well of apathy.

I regarded the two choices (go with it or change it) with all my senses, and then I threw them aside.  I decided to follow the choice presenting the illimitable possibilities within this world.

I listened to my heart and soul and disregarded the insignificant.  I dreamed of travel.  I yearned for the freedom of exploration.  My heart and soul whispered of tales abroad among a new life of transformation.

It was simple.

I packed the few possessions I thought I needed and left with a flexible ticket to the Orient.

There, I realized I didn’t need anything I had first suspected, and so I emptied my sack of all the perceived necessities and placed myself in the hands of my new environment.

With my mind lightened and my worries about necessities eased, my awareness expanded off the pack upon my shoulders to my surroundings.  This observance immediately came full circle, returning me to an original recognition of the potential that rested within.

Suddenly, traveling became an immersion into inner experience.

My lifestyle transformed from the ordinary railway line of dead-ahead tracks that began with my birth — to that of something entirely different.

Prior to my traveling transition, I longed to see as far ahead into the future as possible.  From as early as I can remember to as recent as the present day, society told me what to do, where to go and what to aspire towards.

I was assured through this dependence that the highest education and the most respected career would bring me happiness.  The future was what I needed: that was where my happiness lied, and subsequently, would forever be.  I sincerely believed it.

But then my lifestyle became an inner journey.

I no longer strained to peer into a remote future, but stopped far short and inhaled.  I breathed in the present moment and realized that in this very slice of existence—right before me, existing nowhere else—happiness prevailed.

Travel, and the immersion into an inner experience, begets more and more—and more—travel.  It’s not an addiction.  Nor is it a habit of escapism.  It is a transformation of lifestyles.  True travel is a place of opening yourself to the processes of inner journeying.

It is laying down the arms of ordinary life and undertaking a new style wholly involving oneself and the world abroad.  It is a return to the recognition of who you are, where you came from and where you’re going within the mass of global evolution.

I was traveling and this was my dream.  With this simple decision to follow my heart, I reclaimed my own destiny.  Without it I was not myself, and with it I could do anything.

My life became a spiritual journey.