This website is the culmination of the three most prolonged obsessions of my adult life: Progress, Presence, and Purpose. The ideas I present are based on my firmly held belief that there is common thread that unites us all. And that this thread is not destined to remain a mystery or some abstract concept too vague to be put into action. It is at it’s core, very simple. This is not just another website about finding your purpose, it is about finding your place. This is a gateway to you at your best.
Below I take you through what each of the 3 key concepts mean to me, and how together they form the basis of the service I am offering to provide.
What does it mean to move forward? In the age of such extreme bipartisanship there are very different perspectives on what it actually means to achieve progress. Social programs vs tax reduction; greater immigration vs stronger borders; free education vs private schooling. The issues are endless. And the schools of thought are anything but unanimous.
In an effort to unravel the concept of progress in the most meaningful way I felt compelled to consider the broadest perspective possible: Our Universe. If we assume that from the moment of the big bang until this moment right now the universe has been on a path of progress, what can that teach us?
The universe is undeniably destructive, but it is also the architect of immense beauty. It is both incomprehensibly vast but yet still expanding.
There is a certain harmony in the massive destruction throughout the cosmos. The relationship between gravity and entropy demonstrates this concept quite well. Gravity represents a coming together, an attraction that all things have towards each other. It is organization. Entropy is the breaking down of all systems. It is the movement towards disorder and away from the other.
If either of those forces were to dominate completely, the universe would cease to exist. Either all matter would be crunched into a massive black hole, or all of existence would be broken down into it’s smallest components. We then understand that in the spirit of continuity of the universe, these two opposite forces actually need each other. The universe needs to spread out and disorganize in order to create enough safe space and time for planets to form and for life to emerge.
A common refrain within our unending pursuit of living well is that we need to achieve balance. Citing the example above I reject that hypothesis. Instead I believe we need to manage our shifting imbalance. Every force acting upon us needs it’s victories. Just not utter domination because progress emerges from the delicate wobble of imbalance between opposing wills.
This is an important element in the redefining of progress. The wobble as described is a tool for moving forward. It is inclusive and understands the value of it’s counterpoint. In fact, the true enemy of progress is the idea that one way should always be the way. When we don’t value our opposition we are creating a gateway to tyranny. And we are stalling that which is inherent to the very universe itself. Transformation.
Now we have a choice. We can be willing participants in our transformation through awareness of the dual process of breaking down and coming together, or we can unwillingly participate as one side of a rigid belief system who suffers wins and loses along the way.
To participate doesn’t imply that one day we believe one thing and another day the opposite. It means we are willing to give up enough oxygen in the room so that an opposing perspective not only has their say, but as frequently as us has their day.
The present moment may be the most elusive treasure of humanities existence. We constantly miss it even though it stalks us as reliably as our shadow. It is the ability to see life exactly for what it is: a constantly changing infinite now.
Instead, we have allowed our life experience to be dominated with feelings of guilt, anxiety, anger, and fear. We are loyal to our thoughts and dismissive of our perceptions. We place our worthiness in the hands of others and assign meaning to meaningless things.
Presence is the recognition of a truth that dissolves all of our baggage. We are, in the deepest sense, a blank canvass onto which all of our experiences are painted. When we sit in silence and recognize all of our experiences as happening outside of our truest selves, we develop wisdom. We see the commonality that binds us all. We feel connection, fellowship, and compassion.
This is the gateway into deeper seeing. It is impartial. It is not a source of information but rather it is the space in which something new appears. When we cease attempting to have total control over every aspect of our lives we begin to fall into alignment with the flow of life. In reference to the wobble described above this may be the most profound instance of all.
When we recognize our deepest self as something greater than an opinion, or beyond any perspective, we become less entangled with it. We free the flow of life from the shackles of our singular experience.
When we can consciously shift from resting within our deepest self to full participation in an egoic world we become incredibly powerful beings. This evolved “I” is no longer rooted in one perspective, while occasionally allowing another. There exists instead a curious playfulness with all perspectives.
If you are an addict in denial then you can not yet heal. The same is true for any transformation. We must know ourselves and accept it fully before we can make any permanent changes. The true value of presence is that it makes all of this possible.
On YouTube you can find an old video of Steve Jobs introducing the ‘think different’ campaign. Immediately before he rolls the flagship ad he states that at it’s core Apple believes that people with passion can change the world for the better. This is great, but how do they define better? Without resolving the issue of subjectivity this statement is incomplete. What’s better for you may not be better for me. In fact, they may be in direct conflict with each other. The statement is inspiring, but it’s not the complete truth.
Remaining somewhat vague can be a hack for appearing inclusive. Without defining something to the nth degree the user is free to define it in a way that suits them. It is effective but also flawed. It doesn’t guarantee alignment with purpose of our existence.
Perhaps you think that is too grand a task to undertake. How could the world possibly unite under a common goal? Call me naive if you will but I am a true believer. At the core of everything the why’s are all the same whether we are consciously aware of it or not. The default setting of the universe is to create progress. And that is the foundation of everything that we are doing.
I believe the primary purpose of all beings in the universe is to function as agents of transformation. Humans are distinct because we have the ability to be conscious of this role. From feeding the hungry, to developing the best tech, or designing fashionable clothing we are doing what we are doing because at some level we recognize that it is helping humanity move forward. We recognize that we are fueling transformation and we are doing it in lockstep with the flow of life.
Understanding and articulating this dynamic in the simplest of terms is what I am all about, and it is what I can do for you. I believe we are all at our best when we are conscious of our place in the universe. This is what gives our lives meaning. The nature of progress is to become more proficient in this role, and it can be succinctly described as follows:
“Progress is an ever increasing capacity for transformation”
Now that we know what progress is, check out the four essential pillars that make it happen.
Header image courtesy of Shutterstock.com/Ruslan Merzliakov