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Passion Is the Source of Who You Are
In the beginning, there was passion. Your life, your very existence here on earth, has its source in passion. For at least one moment, passion pulled a man and a woman so powerfully together that they joined their bodies, and from that passionate union, your seed was born. And when that seed grew, and you were ready to enter the world, you did it with all the passion you could muster, your loud cries informing everyone in no uncertain terms that you had arrived!
Your very body is constantly vibrating with passion. How can you call your heart anything but passionate as it beats with unceasing loyalty twenty-four hours a day, every day, every year of your life? How can you think of your lungs as anything but passionate as they faithfully drink in all the air you need, even while you are sleeping? And what could be more passionate than your blood itself, jubilantly racing through thousands of invisible pathways in every part of your body, bringing vitality to every limb and every organ?
It may seem that the passion of your body to keep itself alive is merely a biological phenomenon. But this same passion that drives you toward a state of well-being is your essential nature, not just physically, but spiritually. It is what allows you to give birth to yourself over and over again. Each new beginning, each inner transformation, each outer change of direction is fueled by your passion for more truth, more happiness, more freedom. Each time you choose to change, to grow, to improve, you are choosing to act from that inner core of passion.
It's your passion that, throughout your life, will be your saving grace, for it will keep you going after your dreams when everyone advises you to give up, keep you searching for the right partner even when you're afraid he or she isn't out there, keep you traveling on the path of self-discovery even when you aren't sure where the road is taking you or even what you are looking for. Ultimately, it will lead you to the destiny that you can already hear calling to you from within your own heart.
Passion is not a quality that is foreign to you. It is not a characteristic that some people are born with and some must do without.
To be passionate is as natural to you as breathing, as natural as being alive.
It is the source of who you are.
Our Hunger for Passion
The hunger for passion is universal. Something in our human nature longs for that experience of complete emotional absorption, that magical moment when we are swept away, finally free from our everyday rules, restraints, and routines. Each of us, in our own way, seeks to have our passion awakened. Each of us searches for that which will allow us to feel fully vibrant, fully alive.
Have you ever wondered why there are so many sports fanatics who can't seem to get enough of football, basketball, baseball, or hockey, depending upon the season? Perhaps you've observed your own mate shout at the television set and pound the couch, and been amazed at the intensity of his reaction to what, to you, looks like "just a game." What is it that has him so mesmerized that he never goes for more than a few days without watching a game?
Or perhaps you've had a friend obsessed with a daily soap opera, or romance novels. "How can she watch that trash?" you think to yourself. "And those books--don't they all have the same plot and the same predictable sex scenes? Why does she read one after the other?"
This man and this woman might be shocked to discover that, although on the surface they appear to be very different, in fact, they are both craving the same thing: PASSION. When he watches a professional sporting event, what does he see? Usually, a bunch of men running up and down the field, or the court, passionately striving toward a goal with all their energy, all their focus. When she reads her romance novel, what does she come in contact with? Characters leading dramatic lives full of excitement, intensity, and yes, passion.
It is passion that entertains us. When a team plays without passion, the game becomes boring. "These guys are asleep," a fan complains in frustration as he reluctantly switches channels, or leaves the arena early, hoping to go home and catch the end of another, more passionate contest on TV. When a novel is written without passion, you quickly lose interest in reading it. "Nothing's happening," you conclude with disappointment as you put the book aside.
To feed this appetite for passion, we heavily reward those individuals who can stir our emotions to the greatest heights--actors, professional athletes, and rock musicians all make millions of dollars because they know how to turn our passion on. Right or wrong, we place a higher financial value on their ability to stimulate us than we do on the people who teach our children or who grow our food.
There's nothing wrong with admiring individuals or enjoying events that fire up our passion. The problem arises when we don't experience enough passion in our own lives, and try instead to get high off other people's passion. The sports fanatic who gets more excited about watching sweaty strangers bump into each other than he does about spending time with his own wife, the fan of a TV program who feels more emotion for the characters she watches each day or each week than she does for herself, the person who loves reading about other people's dramas and heartbreaks in the tabloid newspapers and avoids facing her own--these are all people cut off from their own passion, their own aliveness, their own life.
If you are in search of your own passion, start by turning away from the quick fixes and contact high you get from people and situations on the outside, and instead, turn your awareness within. Only your own passion will ever truly satisfy you. Only your own passion can never be stolen from you. Only your own passion can make you feel truly alive every moment of every day.
From the Trade Paperback edition.