Follow the Sun
Articles Inspirational articles from Hay House authors
Follow the SunSpread the light every day.
Our original nature—and our purpose in life—is like the sun. If we asked the sun why it always gives light, its answer would assuredly most likely be: “It’s my nature to do so.” The only thing we can do with life is give it away. Anything and everything else in the way of achievements or acquisitions mean nothing in the context of our purpose as spiritual beings having a human experience. We do not attract what we want; we attract what we are. The Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi makes clear that “it is in giving that we receive.” Giving aligns us with the way our Source of being acts; consequently, the universe offers us experiences that match our giving, supportive nature.
The universe responds back to us in the same vibrating energy that we send out. How may I serve? is the energy of support we send out—and receive in return. We see the beauty of this approach to life, not in the stuff we attract, but in a wondrous sense of contentment that replaces our ambitious, self-centered demands. We are living the Meaning of life.
Turning to Shakespeare, I love this observation he makes in Henry VI, Part III:
My crown is in my heart, not on my head;
Not decked with diamonds and Indian stones,
Nor to be seen. My crown is called content:
A crown it is that seldom kings enjoy.
One of my personal heroes is Mother Teresa, who spent her later years teaching and serving others. She once remarked, “Love cannot remain by itself—it has no meaning. Love must be put into action, and that action is service.” These words have inspired me and have helped me make the shift away from my ego’s ambitions for serving myself toward a life dominated by service to others.
Today my life is almost 100 percent devoted to service in one way or another. Each day begins with a prayer of “Thank you,” which are the first words out of my mouth as I awaken. This is to keep me in a state of gratitude for all that I receive, as well as for the opportunity to live my days in service to others. As the famed Sufi poet Rumi once declared, “If you only say one prayer in a day, make it ‘Thank you.’”
Before beginning my day, I make every effort to do something for someone else. Since I receive volumes of mail, I often send off a book or a DVD of The Shift, a set of CDs, or a DVD of a PBS special—something that I feel will brighten the day of a total stranger somewhere in the world. As I affix the postage, I take great joy in knowing that a surprise package of love in action will send a message to someone that there are people out there who care, and I am one of them.
Often I call someone I’ve been told is grieving the loss of a loved one or is ill in a hospital setting. Other times some money in an envelope goes to one of the many people who serve in my community. If I’m on the road in a hotel, I seek out the maids who serve me so anonymously and surprise them with a gift of some unexpected cash. The things I’m doing aren’t reported for recognition, but to provide real-life examples of how we can shift from ambition to meaning in daily life.
There are a multitude of ways in which we can give. It doesn’t really matter what we do—the point is to get in the habit of replacing our attention on ourselves with attention toward others. We must practice some radical humility, seek out others to serve, keep ego at bay . . . and do it without expectation of any reward.