Envisioning the Gifts of Change -- The Path from Hobbiton

What is your quest or journey of change for 2013?

A surprising holiday experience for me was seeing the film, The Hobbit-- based on J.R. Tolkien’s fantasy world adventure of the same name.  I’d enjoyed the book when I read it in my teens, but hadn’t planned to see the film.  However, curiosity won out, and I went.  To my astonishment, I now saw the story of Bilbo Baggins, hobbit/halfling, not as just an adventure story, but as that of a person propelled, however reluctantly, on a quest not of his making, but which he made into his own.

In the first chapter of my forthcoming book, Success with Soul-- Loving Your Livelihood, Living in Balance, I allude to the inner awareness and prickles of sensation that you sense before you actually “make” a change in your life:

"How do you know when it’s time for a major career or other life change?  Sometimes you’re in a situation where a new opportunity presents itself, and you may intuitively be highly motivated to go for it.  Sometimes an incident happens that radically alters your life, and you have to decide how to face this change.  Or you may have a growing awareness of gnawing dissatisfaction and lack of interest in what you’ve been doing for years."

In The Hobbit, Bilbo is presented with the second situation when the wizard Gandolf and a troupe of dwarves seeking to regain their homeland invade and take over his comfortable underground house with its stores of good food.  Why is this happening to me, he exclaims to Gandalf.  Whereby Gandalf counters, “What happened to the Took in you?”  (The Tooks being part of Bilbo’s lineage and prone to sudden happenings that disrupt the lives of the not-so-prone-to-change inhabitants of Hobbiton.)

Bilbo has no response to this and goes to sleep, awakening to find the dwarves and Gandalf gone.  Suddenly, his Took-ish self mixed with Gandalf’s promptings to wake up to the wider vision within himself and outside Hobbiton come alive in Bilbo, who picks up his walking stick and runs after the dwarf contingent to join in their quest.  He has decided to face this change by trusting that he has a reason to be there, though he doesn’t know what it is or what has really propelled him forth.

“Lifting these bars and opening your vision to the universe of your possibilities is the first daring step you need to take to see clearly where your heart wants you to go.”
-- from Success with Soul-- Loving Your Livelihood, Living in Balance

If you, too, are feeling the inner promptings to set off on your journey or quest towards change in your career or your life, remember what Gandalf told Bilbo-- that you may never come back to the place where you began and if you do, you will be different from the way you were when you left.  The implication is that, if you lend yourself to the process of change, you will gain the boon of understanding what it is to be fully engaged in the emergence of your whole life.  You may grow in compassion and in the wisdom of what it is to be human, as Bilbo did in his nearly fatal encounter with the deranged and wretched being, Gollum.  You will know yourself and what you are capable of offering and receiving.

“Now I can’t hear a travel story, watch a film, or read a book without asking, ‘What was brought home?  Where is the gift?  Show me
jewels sewn into the lining of your coat.  Where is the boon?’”
-- Phil Cousineau, The Art of Pilgrimage

  Now consider:

What is your quest or journey of change for 2013?

What is an obstacle you’re facing in setting out on your journey?

What are your inner and outer resources for surmounting obstacles and engaging in change?

What is the gift you want to bring back from your journey?