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Who owns these things and why?

by Carissa Kazyss

Have you ever felt stuck doing something you didn’t want to do, yet weren’t sure what it was you did want to do? Sometimes it’s easier to articulate to ourselves and others what we are moving away from, yet to get ultra specific and clear about what we are moving towards can feel murkier. What we really want is sometimes encased in a myriad of feelings, thoughts, memories and aspirations. And we may have never even really articulated what we truly want fully.

General qualities like happiness, joy, peace, play, ease might come to move …we might even envision a life of these things, yet how do we make it real when it comes to action? It can feel like there is a huge gap between how we want to feel in our lives and imagining ourselves doing the things that would give us those qualities. Especially if it’s challenging to imagine a reality outside of the reality we are currently in.

In The Caravan of Remembering, we find a response to this tension, as David is asked to step into the unknown of the Caravan and begin to explore life mission by asking questions like ‘why are you in the horizontal world?’ and ‘survey your house as if it belonged to a stranger…ask yourself who this person is who owns these things and why…what is his or her life about?’ The latter question seems to intrigue people, and I find there’s a lot to unpack in the simplicity of it.

The act of seeing ourselves through our space, as a stranger invites as kind of objective, detached looking with the question of “why would this person have these things, what are they about?.” It can be invigorating to look around one’s house in this way. Looking, free of opinion as much as we can, free of subjective attachment, holding a question of what the things in the space might say about me.

When I ask this question, clues begin to build, almost poetically, in a space inside my mind that seems to be reserved for this kind of inquiry. It takes me out of the usual tallying of how my housecleaning is doing, and also out of the chatter about this and that. Somehow, in asking this question, and the other life mission scales or Caravan scales offered, a moment of stillness happens. Wheels are turning in some part of my mind. A spotlight is shining in a new way on my space, and in the process I’m feeling seen in a new way.

Being seen by our ‘selves’ – an interesting concept, isn’t it? How often do we take time to see ourselves in a way that’s safe, free of judgement, simply as is. There is a key here for identifying the “towards” – the more we see ourselves and are known to ourselves, the more the next step, the towards movement becomes accessible from within. And the more we learn to recognize it on the outside.

As if by magic (but not really), we’ve started to search for meaning in our lives. And in this search for meaning, we begin to find what gives us most meaning, and what specifically that looks like to our unique as a snowflake selves. There is no longer a question of whether we are doing our life purpose, there’s a surrendering to the process and the inquiry, a giving way to the process of it, versus attachment to an outcome. And then outcomes begin to happen. Because we are all lit up, alive, engaged in life, moment by moment presence.

So the next time you have a moment, take a look around your house or office or car or any place you inhabit and ask, “who would have these things and why? what is this person about?” If you stay with the question, it will continue to percolate and build in you, until you one day your knowing self speaks louder than the chatter, louder than the doubts, louder than things that don’t give you life. And you notice yourself reaching for the things that give you meaning, feed your heart and soul, and your articulation of why you are here has begun.