When I was much younger, I thought that education would be the answer to all my problems, so I went about obtaining degrees. I collected a good number of them including a summa cum laude degree in chemistry and mathematics, and an MBA among others. But I found that my education, even though it helped tremendously, did not bring real satisfaction. So I put the certificates and diplomas in the bathroom under glass and wrote, “Break in Case of Emergency.”
Then I started working for Fortune 500 companies and became intrigued with those who frequented the boardrooms of power and fame. And though a part of me was fascinated, thrilled and even enjoyed the trappings of power, there was something that was missing, which I couldn’t put my finger on. My heart and spirit were crying out for something that I couldn’t find in major corporations.
Still searching for the “Holy Grail” I became an entrepreneur and built a very successful, multi-national business with offices in the United States, the Caribbean, Africa, India and the United Kingdom. Life seemed good. I traveled the world, wined and dined with leaders of industry and even leaders of countries. I was treated as a prince, but still it all felt empty and useless.
Wherever I sought for peace and prosperity and happiness, I’d find prosperity without the peace or I’d discover abundance without the happiness. Finally, one day, as I sat on my wife’s deathbed (she was only in her thirties when she died), it became clear to me that my happiness, peace and prosperity were not dependent on anything external, but on that which was within me,that which had always been with me from my very first day on Earth.
So I started to look within me and discovered a wonderland beyond imagination. I realized that the one spiritual practice more important than all the others that could bring me peace, happiness and prosperity was the practice of going into the “silence” deep within me. Some call it meditation or prayer, others refer to it as contemplation or centering oneself. I do not know what it should be called, but I think of it as the “silence”.
In the great silence within, I become renewed, refreshed and excited to face the physical world. When I return from my moments of silence or meditation, I feel great waves of joy. I feel peaceful, secure and safe. Perhaps in the depths of my being, there is a place of beautiful silence where I meet my Creator and where I find renewal of body, mind and spirit. Perhaps true success and peace emanate from this silent sanctuary.
Many years ago, I wrote the following: “Whenever problems seem to get the best of me, whenever I feel them closing in on me, I go to a quiet place that lies somewhere in my soul. I do not reason, analyze or think. Those will come later. I simply go. From this place of silence, I garner strength and inspiration to stand firm in the face of fire, to be calm in the midst of thunder. When I emerge, the world has not changed, but I have. And in changing, a whole new world is born.”
I find that is as true today as when I first wrote it or thought it. Success, whichever way we define it, whether by money standards, health or happiness standards, is not a game of chance. It springs from deep within us, from our deepest thoughts and beliefs. It has to do with our fears and hopes and it flows eternally from our spiritual center of gravity. Go into the silence within you. Try to do so a number of times each day. Let your true self speak to you. Listen to the “still, small voice”, which is always there. You will find calm, peace and prosperity unknown in ordinary times. You’ll find a new and joyous path opening ahead of you and you’ll be delighted in the glorious adventures that await around the corner.