October 2
To have reason to get up
in the morning, it is necessary
to possess a guiding principle,
a belief of some kind,
a bumper sticker, if you will.

Judith Guest


Today's Meditation:

When I see a statement like this, I immediately ask myself, "Do I have such a guiding principle?"  Because I usually don't think of such things--I just keep on keeping on, doing my thing--whatever that happens to be on any given day.  Most of us are content with having to use the bathroom as our reason to get up in the morning, or having to be at work or school.  But doesn't there have to be more to it than that?  Is the threat of losing our jobs enough to actually get us up in the morning, ready to face a new day?

I'm not sure that it is.  I think that what Judith would argue is that if your only reason for getting up is to use the bathroom or to get to work on time so you don't get fired, then you really aren't making the most of your life.  You really haven't figured out what your purpose here is, what you're doing on this wonderful planet that offers us so many opportunities.  Perhaps it's time that we all adopt what we would call a guiding principle, something that would give us direction each day of our lives.  My main guiding principle is service, and I'm fortunate enough to be in a line of work that I love--teaching--that also allows me to serve others.

Sometimes, though, we find that it's difficult to get up and at 'em, to move into our day with vigor in our step and enthusiasm in our eyes.  Even with a guiding principle, some days just are flat.  On those days, though, having that principle can get us through because we know that we have a purpose, and it should be important to us to fulfill that purpose, for the sake of the other people who benefit from our actions.

Judith makes a good point when she suggests that we have a guiding principle to give us a reason to get up and start each day as it comes.  It's up to us to define that principle, though, and once we do we'll find that our lives brighten from the early hours of each morning until the late hours of each evening, and the fulfillment that we experience will be worth the time it takes to work out in our own minds and hearts just what that principle is.

Questions to consider:

What gets you through each day?  How could a "guiding principle" make each day of yours richer and more fulfilling?

How do we tend to go so long through life without any sort of guiding principles? 

What are your major reasons for getting up in the morning?  Are they enough?

For further thought:

Purpose serves as a principle around which to organize our lives.



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