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Last week we talked about the deeper part of us which the mystic poets call “soul”—a rich word that’s been around for thousands of years. In this poem, Hafiz asks, what happens when a soul wakes up?

What happens when your soul begins to awaken your eyes and your heart

And the cells of your body to the great journey of Love?

First there is wonderful laughter and probably precious tears

And a hundred sweet promises and those heroic vows No one can ever keep!

But God is still delighted and amused you once tried to be a saint.

What happens when your soul begins to awake in this world?

Someone has said that the average person only realizes about 10% of his potential in life, that the average heart is only 10% alive with love, joy, wisdom, wonder, courage, etc.

So let’s imagine: what if we could bump that up just a little? What might it be like if the deep inner part of my life was becoming more awake and more alive? What if I was creating quiet space to get more in touch with my deep inner self…my soul?

Last week I mentioned the Dear Soul, Dear Life dialogues written by a friend of mine who introduced me to the mystic poets. Here are a couple more:

Dear Soul: If you gave me three wishes, I wouldn’t even know what to wish for.


Dear Life: That’s enough to sadden Aladdin. But as a reward for your honesty, I offer you this suggestion. Death will one day overtake you. What do you wish to be doing when it catches up with you? Whatever that is, you might wish to get on with it, starting today.


Dear Soul: Listen, I’m getting closer. The way I have it figured, I have about one more year of singing the all-consuming-paying-my-dues blues, then when I get the next promotion and a little extra financial margin, we’ll get together and create a life that loves to happen.


Dear Life: Yeah, but what if you just have one more year, period? As smart as you are, you still don’t get it. So let me spell it out for you. Two simple rules: Rule #1: Begin at once to live. Rule #2: Don’t postpone joy. Every day, every moment, start with rule #1 and proceed immediately to rule #2. And by the way, don’t be a dunce: begin at once!

Look, we all deal with the stress and busyness of life and a lot more. The world is a mixture of the beautiful and the awful. But you still have yourself and your soul, and you have this week of life. And that’s a lot! So here are your marching orders:

This week, remembering how short life is, I’ll follow two simple rules: Rule #1: Begin at once to live. Rule #2: Don’t postpone joy. I won’t be a dunce—I’ll begin at once!