HOW TO FIND PURPOSE?
My passion for helping young people to believe in themselves and for supporting them to find their inner truth, belief, intuition and power, along with the answer to the question: “Which way is the best?” has been my search since I started to develop the Global Citizen Project.
This search has led me on a pilgrimage lately, to find a deeper answer to this question.
The last 2 years working with Mac Macartney in Embercombe (www.embercombe.org) I learnt the importance of the Twin Trail – the Inner and the Outer Path of which Mac speaks so much about. (I will write about this in another blog) and how to embed it into my own work – bringing true international understanding and respect to university students with my “Broadening Your Horizons” programme.
I have been travelling the world since I left High School and I found many concepts like: meditation, western psychology, eastern spirituality, the human potential, shamanism, healing and so on. Along my path, I met many incredible teachers, mentors, coaches, healers and all of them gave me a glimpse of what ‘purpose’ may mean – how I can step into my full potential.
And yes, there are so many good ideas, all valid to embed in education. However, how can we really support our Youth, Our Future Generation?
Words such as these by Patrick Cook Deegan are so valid to look at how best to support our Youth Patrick Cook-Deegan:
“How to help Teens to find Purpose?”
‘Creating a sense of purpose in education starts with basic “why” questions: why are we taking this class? Why are we in school? Why am I learning algebra? These are straightforward and educators often try to answer them. But most school settings fail to address the even larger questions: Why was I put on this earth? What do I want to do with my life? Why am I having trouble figuring out my identity? A real education of adolescents must start with these “why” questions and then begin to help young people develop their own identity, sense of purpose, and understanding of the world and their place in it.’
What surprises me over and over again, is that I am often wondering: “What is my purpose in this life?” This question pops up over and over again. I encounter adults (young and not so young) with the same question in our leadership and volunteer programmes at Embercombe, as well as when I am travelling around the world. Many of these people have achieved incredible things in life already, and are still wondering: What is my real purpose?
My own journey with this question has been a continuous search of methods and spiritual practises, such as mediation retreats, silence, walking, vision quests, travelling, consciousness work and other such activities. But for me, what most brings me back to my own answers is my own deep listening.
After my recent visit to Tamera, a research base in Portugal set up over 30 years ago with the aim of creating a new concept of mankind, I was blown away by their own School of Hope, “Escola da Esperanca. Now I ask myself: would we have an intuitive trust and inner wisdom of our purpose throughout our life, if we would have been raised in a way of a deep inner connection to all around us and in ourselves.
Children and young people are the bearers of our planet’s future.
I quote from Tamera’s leitmotiv: “Every child carries an intuitive and authentic power for peace within them. Children need to be protected from the madness and violence of today’s world and they need adults who will stand up for life, and against war with all their strength and determination. They need to live and learn in a space full of human truth, trust and a sense of home. They possess immense abilities to help protect animals, plants, and human beings. One of the most important tasks of the “Escola da Esperança” in Tamera is to protect and strengthen these powers of protection and peace.”
On my own journey, I have written and commented many times about the urgent need of a new form of schooling. Nothing really in the mainstream schooling has been created since the Internet was invented. Already in August 2013, the (biggest) Daily Paper in Finland – Helsingin Sanomat, published an article about the future of Finnish Education with headlines:
“INSTEAD OF STUDENTS WHO ARE SUCCESSFUL AT SCHOOL, THE FUTURE NEEDS PEOPLE WHO CARE ABOUT EACH OTHER” …..…..
…..”One big negative feature is that education has become a production line, comparable to a factory, where the child, the person to be educated has very little room to breathe. There is not much room for their voice, their thoughts or views. Our education system is still based on a system where the teacher transfers the already processed knowledge to the student. According to digital natives (i.e. those born after invention of the internet) schools is boring and delivers unnecessary information that can be ‘Googled’ at any time instead of learning it by heart. This model is out-dated.”
I am not surprised and actually in awe of many young students, especially in Germany, who decide against the “Abitur“, the school final exam necessary to access university. This takes huge courage.
From Tamera’s school, it seems the young go out into the world with a clear purpose: to study new ways and concepts, which will support the evolution of this world in the benefit of all.
Professor Dr Gerald Hüther, Neuroscientist, founder and visionary of the project Tamera writes:
“Our schools must be transformed into biotopes of learning where young people, inspired and excited, develop curiosity and take on the responsibility of shaping their own worlds. Learning must become a creative exchange of ideas among learners, free from hierarchical instruction. Independently acquired knowledge and skills, and not learning by rote, is what matters for those who are designing the 21st century.”
Maybe then, not only the young have a clear sense of their purpose in life, but also we all have found it.