The Ever-Transcending Goal
For as long as I can remember, competing at the Olympics has been a fairytale-dream of mine...
As far as I could see, way in the distance, glowing on the horizon a Gold medal at the Olympics lay. Nothing beyond this ever entered my mind, but nothing was needed beyond the Olympics because this was the ultimate goal.
When I was 21, the opportunity arose in my sailing career to begin a campaign towards the 2004 Olympics. I still felt like it was a world away and I couldn’t yet see a clear path that would lead me to this world either. However, I focused on smaller goals and on each step of the way – sailing regattas, training, and constantly improving my performance. Without even realising it, my dream was slowly becoming a reality.
In 2003 our team (two girls and I) won the trials to represent New Zealand at the pre-Olympic regatta in Athens, Greece. This was held at the Olympic sailing site a year before the Olympics and is a replica of the real Olympic regatta. We had New Zealand uniforms, coaches, weather analysts and the New Zealand flag painted all over our sails. A real medal ceremony was held at the end of the regatta presenting the winners with gold, silver and bronze medals. Competing at this regatta was an amazing experience. It really brought the Olympics to reality for me.
During this time a feeling occurred to me that I had never encountered before. Now that I had travelled so close to my goal and was standing in arms reach of the Olympics, for the first time ever, I began to see beyond it. Beyond the dream that had shone so enticingly on the horizon all my life. Yet all I saw was a huge, empty void. It gave me a very empty feeling inside. For so many years I had been content with my little world of sailing, study, friends and family. The enchanting dream of the Olympics securely encompassed my life and satisfied my ambitions. It was always a goal fulfilling enough for me to happily point my life-boat towards. Now that it was right in front of me, I started to see how finite it was. I guess I was ready for a greater purpose in life.
One year later I was attending Jogyata's meditation classes at the Sri Chinmoy Centre in Auckland. The first thing that distinctly stood out to me was the mention of the 'ever-transcending goal'. The highest reality in meditation - Self-realisation or God-realisation, is always transcending, deeper, higher, increasingly more fulfilling, satisfying, peaceful and blissful. There is no fixed destination to arrive at and wonder ‘Where to from here?’ After hearing this, I knew with meditation I would never have to peer into that gaping empty hole in my life again. I had embarked on a journey that would fulfil me for eternity!
I think the Olympics is an awesome achievement for people in life. I believe goals and ambitions give life it’s fullness and excitement and keep the fragrance of hope alive in humanity. But I guess, at least for me, that without the awareness of our inner reality, our souls purpose on earth, any achievement no matter how great, is going to seem finite and slightly empty. Meditation awakens us to this awareness of a greater purpose in our lives. It lays a solid foundation for us to build our life-castle on. We may go about the same daily activities, have the same goals and ambitions as before, but with meditation in our lives we have a sense of peace, happiness and contentment inside us. Everything else in life can be put into perspective to bring us pure joy, delight, and progress.
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