Coming into this world is a momentous event, something that traditional cultures didn’t take for granted. Birthing rituals, along with coming-of-age ceremonies, were practiced as a way to enhance and create the best circumstances for a child during their lifetime. Often included would be extended family members and friends, illuminating the fact that you can’t make it through life alone. Blessings were bestowed onto a child, knowing that life is hard and sometimes great strength is needed. It is from this place of reverence and sacredness that the concept of destiny has a special place when it comes to living out your life.
What Is Destiny?
Destiny may seem like a lofty idea, meant for other people who have the privilege of entertaining such thoughts. Sometimes it is considered to be fate, something beyond your control and predetermined (which sounds very one-sided). Whatever your thoughts and beliefs are around destiny, set them aside for now.
Instead, let’s ponder an idea of destiny that inspires clarity and truth and is in alignment with your blessed life. No matter what challenges you face, there is a sacred place within you that keeps pushing, creating, and seeking. No one has access to this except you. This is where destiny resides.
Destiny is living the life you were meant to live; something only you can determine. When was the last time a person asked about your dreams and desires? It sounds a bit funny and perhaps unrealistic, but this is a legitimate question. Try going up to someone and asking them what their deepest desire is and watch as they light up. It could be changing a career, traveling, improving a relationship, buying a home, starting a business, or simply needing more alone time. No matter how big or small, your desires are valid.
Maybe you don’t know what your dreams and desires are, not having thought of this on a conscious level, or maybe it was ridiculed in the past. Your life purpose is shaped and molded by influences from many sources: friends, family, society, work, etc. There is no avoiding this, it’s human nature. This is why it’s important to regularly tap into your heart’s true desire(s) and live life from this place as often as you can.
There is a well-known passage from an ancient Vedic text that states: “You are what your deepest desire is. As your desire is, so is your intention. As your intention is, so is your will. As your will is, so is your deed. As your deed is, so is your destiny.” This is a compelling statement that reveals a simple but powerful truth. Here is another way to read this passage:
Your destiny is guided by your actions (deeds),
Which is fueled by your passion (will),
Which arises from your intent to cultivate the seeds of your desires.
Thus, your destiny ultimately comes from the deepest level of desire and also from the deepest level of intention. So, how do you fulfill your destiny? The journey starts by going inward and slowly working your way outward.
1. Who Am I?
To get to where you want, you must first understand who you truly are. Most of us live from our conditioned selves as a result of childhood experiences and subsequent years influenced by expectations and habits. As a result, the mind and heart can become muddled over time, making it hard to listen to that inner voice or gut feeling. Depression, a feeling of longing, and mental and physical discomfort start to manifest when you don’t heed your calling. This is why it’s important to slowly quiet the turbulence within in order to allow space for understanding of personal truth, only then can you begin to answer the question of who am I?
One of the most powerful ways to enter into this expanded space of discovery and root into your essential self is through a regular practice of meditation. In meditation, you experience pure awareness and being. It allows you to move beyond the ego, which is constricting, and into the silence and stillness within, which is expanded and full of potential. Here is where you access your true self. Over time, new awareness will start to permeate into your daily life, influencing your choices for the better and leading toward honoring your goals, talents, and divine destiny.
2. What Do I Want?
Now that you have begun to still the turbulent waters beneath the surface through meditation or other practice, it’s time to become clear on what you want. If you don’t know what this is yet, that’s ok. Start by simply asking the question, “What do I really and truly want?” and notice what begins to surface. Awareness is one of the major components of creating meaningful change in your life.
It’s important to first start by being grateful for what you already have. Honor where you have been, and the lessons learned. It’s easy to get lost in regret, but this only ends up keeping you in a state of limitation and feeling stuck. Maybe you would benefit from working on forgiveness, for your own sake. Both of these practices help to lift the emotional burdens of life, freeing up energy to focus on your journey of self-discovery.
After you have finished doing some emotional weed pulling, so to speak, think about your desires, your dreams, and what you would like to create more of in your life. For example:
- How do you want to feel? Radiant, abundant, joyous, connected?
- In what situations do you feel light and happy?
- When does time stand still?
Start to notice what (or who) takes you away from your truth and what brings you closer. If in doubt, try connecting with your body, it will never lie.
Practice connecting with your body when making a decision. You can do this easily by placing one hand on your stomach and the other on your chest and notice what you feel. When something is off or not for your highest good you might experience a stomach ache or your chest becoming tight and heavy. If it’s right, your body might feel light or a bit nervous because you are excited. That sacred place deep within you already knows your desires and your physical body is in tune with this—use it to help guide you.
3. What Is Your Intention?
You’ve been laying the foundation and now it’s time to start putting the creative power of the universe to work. What does this mean? It means you have help. The same powerful creative energy of nature and the universe also runs within you.
Think about what it takes for a baby to be born! There isn’t any person guiding it or saying where to put each cell. Instead, there is an underlying organizing power at work. It needs to know what the end game is though, or at least have some feeling of what that might be, so it knows where to direct the energy.
This is where intention comes into play. It harnesses this creative energy and uses the work you have done to get clear on your dreams and desires. When you intend to wiggle your toes, they wiggle. When you intend to visit your grandmother, you start to make plans. Intention, according to Deepak Chopra, MD, is a “… directed impulse of consciousness that contains the seed form of that which you aim to create.” Those seeds, in this case, being your deepest desires and truth.
Once your intention has been set, it’s important to give it awareness on a daily basis. Awareness energizes and intention transforms. Here are some ways to cultivate your seeds of desires:
- Practice staying in the present moment. The real you exists in the now and isn’t affected by past or future.
- Make a list of all your desires and keep them close by to read daily. They may change or evolve over time and that’s fine.
- Find ways to be of service. This encourages you to get out of your head and into your heart. People and experiences have a way of bringing to light truths about yourself.
- Recognize you have something valuable to share with the world.
- Surround yourself with good people who support your dreams and desires.
4. Let It Go
This may sound counterintuitive, but the last step is to let it go. Relinquish any attachment to the outcome and learn to trust in the wisdom of uncertainty, which can be scary. Incidentally, if something is scary, most likely you are headed in the right direction. Usually the experiences that take you out of your comfort zones are going to be the most transformational and leave you feeling fulfilled.
Intend for everything to work out as it should and allow for flexibility. When you force an action or outcome, it may not be as good as the one that comes naturally and effortlessly; it may be vastly different than what you expected. Let it go because when you hold tight to something, it becomes stifled and unable to grow and show its true greatness. Dreams and desires thrive in expansion and freedom and so does your personal destiny.
This isn’t a time to sit back and relax. There is work to be done, but it’s good work because it supports who you are and what you are creating. The important thing is you have released your intentions out into the universe and now you must trust that when the season is right, they will bloom.
So, how do you fulfill your destiny? You learn to discover your purpose, your light, your truth, and you dance with it, discover it even when it gets challenging. This is what it means to live a blessed life, something you are capable of having and your loved ones intended for you to have—birthing or coming-of-age rituals received or not.
Everyone has a destiny to live the life they were meant to live. Listen to that voice, trust yourself, and the work you’ve done and keep on dancing until you have found it, and then keep on dancing and fulfilling your destiny because it’s a cause for celebration.
Take your happiness into your own hands and become the person you’ve always dreamed of being with The Quest: Spiritual Solutions for Creating a Life You Love, our online course led by Deepak Chopra and Martha Beck. Learn More.