Prompt #5: What else (besides travel) are you passionate about?
I came across this mural in a little jazz bar in Ulsan, South Korea. The name of the place escapes me (it was several years ago) but if I close my eyes I can still feel being there. I loved it for various reasons: it was hard to find; it was a little out of place (for the city it was in), and the eccentric owner was visibly passionate about jazz.. music. The quote hanging next to the mural really resonated with me. "Utopia: the love of life itself." Brilliant.
Of course what makes us love life is the ability to follow our passions; to be in constant contact with things that make us feel alive. This is not always easy to do: things like reason, doubt, insecurity, fear of the unknown, and conformity all stand in passion's way. Finding a way past these things is the trick to living your passions rather than just dabbling in them when you have free time from all the things that you are not passionate about.
My life is not always sunshine and lollipops. I have sacrificed things like stability, nice (material) things, security, and a support system that is physically where I am, to follow my main passion (travel). It is hard sometimes-loneliness, culture shock, missing people and places, and an unpredictable short term future can make things tricky at times. But I try to always move closer in the direction of what puts a sparkle in my eye. I think we all have an inner compass that pulls us in certain directions... It seems to me that this is for a greater purpose; people who find what they are truly meant to do give something to the world. (Think Picasso, John Lennon, and even as far back as Rumi. All that these people did was follow their own unique calling.)
As Howard Thurman said: “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”
(The shorter, less philosophical answer to this prompt is: writing, books, photography, languages, my family, animals, art, music, dancing, old films, quotes, cultural traditions, and about two more things a day that I discover.