We live in era where we all need help. Chris Forte on how to accept it – especially from your elders.
I was inspired to write this piece based on these words: “Stick with what you know.” I was going through my routine of stretching, breathing, and prayer before yoga class when an older gentleman came up to me and said these words. Now this man and I exchange pleasantries when we see each other in the studio, but not much more. I don’t know if he is familiar with my work or not, but when he said these words, I felt it came from a much deeper place–The Divine.
Anytime an elder speaks to me I listen very intently. My belief system is that these are words of wisdom that can help assist me on my path. When this gentleman said these words, it was exactly what I needed to hear at the time. “Stick with what you know.” So, what does this mean? It means my story of the daily quest to fight the good fight, to live a life of love, passion, freedom, and purpose and sharing it with anyone who will listen… Spreading how powerful each one of us is and offering ways to tap into the light… The Divine, God, Universe, Buddha–whatever your belief system is, to always know that this power has your back at all times. You’re never alone… even when experiencing times of darkness.
We live in era where we all need help. I’m one who has suffered many years in finding my true self. I didn’t have a roadmap where to start, so I followed what we are conditioned to do: have a successful career, loving family and friends, a relationship with God. Well, that worked to some degree, but something was missing. At the age of 29, I started asking the questions, “Who am I? What is my purpose?” From that day on the quest was to find out how to answer those seemingly simple questions.
My spiritual path became my passion and obsession, and still is today. I’ve read and studied hundreds of spiritual and personal development books along the way. One of the biggest impacts is surrounding myself with elders who help me on this path. These elders come in many forms. Grandparents (no longer alive) helped me understand my parents, which helped me come to grips with my upbringing. Spiritual mentors who asked the same question, “Who are you?” Authors of books have also helped me on my way. So as I turn 46, “stick with what you know” means simply this: Be Me. Be my True Self, writing, teaching, and speaking to anyone who wants to listen to what it means to be Spiritually Fit. It has taken a long time to put a spiritual fitness practice in place that keeps me on the path, and it continues to push my boundaries to go further.
A couple of days ago, a young man (in his low 30’s) approached me with challenges about his new job and the stresses that come along with it. I gave him a few spiritual fitness practices that can help him with his ways of thinking. He was very appreciative and was planning to implement. Only time will tell if our connection has any impact.
After that conversation, it hit home: “Wow–this took me close to 20 years to develop this practice, and I was able to help someone within 45 minutes.” I want to serve and help the people like me that are living like me in this everyday mainstream American life.
Spiritual Fitness Tip–When an elder approaches you, especially someone you don’t know well, listen with intent. The words might be exactly what you need to receive at that time. For additional karmic points, next time you are at a grocery store and see an elder struggling with their groceries, please help them. Every act of service and respect matters.
This article originally appeared on Chris Forte
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