Jan 2018

Resolve to Live a Life of Joy

By Ilchi Lee Comment

Sharing and giving with others brings you joy, like these volunteers.

You were born with life energy, and with it, the right to use that energy. That right was given only to you, until you die. You’re the only one who can decide how to use it. Your life energy is waiting to be used, and it doesn’t want to be wasted meaninglessly.

A new year has come, and at this time, we tend to reflect on what we’ve done and what we want to do. What if you thought ahead to your final day with life energy? What can you do now so that on that day, you could look back on your life without regret?

No one can answer that except for you, but there is a way to find the answer—it’s in your heart. Think of the things you want, and focus on your heart. Do you feel joy and satisfaction filling it? Then those are the things that will let you live and die without regret. You can even ask yourself every day, “If I knew that today was the last day of my life, would I go ahead with what I had planned for the day?” If you think you would, then what you are doing now is clearly meaningful.

When you live this way, you add to the energy of your soul in your heart. As it expands, your soul grows and matures. If you keep growing your soul until the moment of your death, you can meet your death confidently and peacefully. You cannot feel such satisfaction and peace if you have only spent your life satisfying the desires and selfishness of the ego. Then, many regrets will remain.

This applies to the big choices in life, as well as the small ones. If you find the kind of work you will never regret doing, but would regret never having done, then you can live with passion and excitement, even in your later years. Passion revives when the energy of your soul fills your heart. Find the work and life that will fill your heart with passion. This is essential in order to be healthier, happier, and more peaceful.

I have often found that what satisfies the soul is good for you and good for others. If you help people to become healthier, happier, and more peaceful, then you, too, will become healthier, happier, and more peaceful. The energy of joy in your heart doubles in power when you make other people smile. The energy of love in your heart wants to be given and shared.

In contrast, if you don’t ask your heart what it values, what will bring it joy, you may fall into trying to feed it with material things, entertainment, and other distractions. However, since these things can’t fill up your heart, you may end up overconsuming them, like a sugary drink that leaves you hungry and unsatisfied. You can get lost in a cycle of need and greed, going through the motions without really living. There is no change or growth in this.

As you think about your New Year’s resolutions this year, put real thought into what you need to do for your growth and development, and how to live a life of joy and deep inner satisfaction.

While you live, you are the master of your life energy. Will you put it to good use as its true master, or will you be a spectator, standing by and watching with your arms folded? A life as a master or a spectator—you must choose between the two. Find and design what you really want to achieve so you’ll be free of regrets at the moment of death.

I want to cheer you on, hoping you will be able to discover something that fills you with excitement and passion, something you won’t regret though you die doing it, something you would gladly do even on the last day of your life. What you vividly dream becomes reality.