For most people in this world, life is spent on a careful journey of planning, strategizing and avoiding. Avoiding is the most interesting of these three activities because it specifically revolves around the nasty business of change, unhappy surprises and most of all, trouble. It seems that most of us will do whatever it takes to avoid trouble and embrace a simple, almost meaningless form of personal serenity. Naturally, the problem herein lies in the fact that living this way does not only present its own challenges and strain, but it is the reason that so many people never realize their full potential or even experience a shred of the greatness that lies within them.

Pain. Problems. Disappointments. Tragedy. Loss. All are part of the human experience the same way that joy, happiness, success, love, and personal fulfillment are part of that same experience. But when it comes right down to it, you cannot have one in it’s full capacity if you don’t have the other. That is why when asked if they are truly and completely happy most people will admit that they are only moderately happy. In other words, the stresses of circadian living, including those little daily annoyances have the capacity to mar the concept of authentic joy. But not in a big way. Everything is relative and is lived in equal balance. Small stresses lead to small self realization and happiness. What this means is that if you choose to live your life in a way that includes doing everything you can to avoid pain believing that this is the formula to gaining ultimate pleasure than you could remain one of those people who upon deeper self reflection is willing to admit that they are only moderately happy.

Am I suggesting that you throw caution to the wind completely with the idea that you should behave in ways that can only be described as reckless? Not at all. In fact, I am a great admirer of those uniquely organized individuals who plan their lives so carefully that, in the end, they can have almost anything they desire. Almost.

It’s a frightening thought to move out of your tiny comfort zone into a space that reeks of potential havoc and threat. It’s so much easier to stay with what you know. Socialize only with small groups of people you are familiar with. Apathetically languish in a job that presents no real personal fulfillment but is a safe bet over the long haul. Remain in a country where the action of daily living fails to exhilarate
you and leaves you restless and bored. But with all these issues, you know your way around and you’re comfortable…right? And that’s something.

Now if you are one those lucky individuals who has found bliss in a quiet, uncomplicated life and who is content to simply and effectively manage the every day stresses of your daily existence you can probably stop reading right now and get on with it. But I urge you not to because there is a bigger issue looming that must be discussed if any of this is to make sense. That is the reality that there is a great
likelihood that things are going to happen to you, some of them so fiercely menacing and so wholly formidable that they have the vast and colossal ability to forever alter the person you are, how you live and what you think about. These are the very human experiences which include, pain, loss and… wait for it… ultimate change.

True Bohemians know this. They have come to understand that their best days are not behind them but that they are, in a sense, growing younger with every day that passes and especially with every debilitating experience. In other words, outwardly we waste away on a physical plane but inwardly there is a process of renewal which sparkles with a kind of profound freshness and vitality of thought that cannot be acquired any other way but by the experience of painful upheavals and crippling events. Naturally the longer you live, the greater the chance that you will experience a larger collection of personal difficulty, tragedy or loss. This is a given.

Renewal. A process of modernizing, restoring and redeveloping something of significant importance. In the mind, body and spirit of any human being there is a strong capacity for renewal particularly after a tragedy or loss. Yet here’s the thing. Most people who have lived long enough to process this concept and put it to effective use have been dismissed as being out of touch, out of date and expendable. Instead there is a kind of celebration of a youth culture, with members, who, if in their right minds, should be lining up for a kind of short cut to the accumulated wisdom that has been so circumstantially acquired over time and space and painful challenges by those, now conspicuously separated from popular culture and even contemporary society.

The fact is that with every loss, tragedy or considerable challenge we experience, the spectacular process of renewal occurs, and the more frequently we are subjected to troubles on both a large and
small scale the more we are inclined to renew and begin a process of intellectual and emotional rebirth. This is valuable stuff. It means that as you grow and evolve over time and with the help of your own idiosyncratic trials and confrontations you become less of an entity who is living a spiritual life, and more of one who is a spiritual life.

The blissful station of your existence in which you begin to realize your own value can only occur when you are calm in the face of the storm and almost automatically have learned to transcend so many of the terrifying circumstances and emotions which accompany big, personal, human troubles. It’s a kind of enriched plateau in fact. A place where you realize that you are bigger than your current issue or circumstance. That the problems you are experiencing today are only momentary and not the end of the world. And finally, that there are things, a vast number of things, in fact, which matter far more than others.

As a true Bohemian, you can finally understand and accept the concept that no, you are not the greatest power in the universe and that it’s okay to surrender to a greater power, whether that be your inner self, your consciousness, the universe or the Infinite Intelligence that we like to call God. And that being in control of everything, always, is not at all necessary for the acquisition of a fulfilling life.

Over a lifetime, and especially during the more youthful days of our existence we acquire boatloads of junk, both on a physical and a metaphysical plane. The true Bohemian knows as he or she reaches that magical age, the age that so many dismiss as being out of touch and quaintly old fashioned, that the time has come to eliminate the useless and cumbersome junk, embracing instead a life and personal
credo that is serene in it’s philosophy, modern in its ideology. The impressive individual, so carelessly tossed aside for the sake of a few cheap and easy thrills has come to know this and in doing so has moved to that marvelous place where they are ready to embrace a renewed life far beyond the normal self.