The knight and the castle move jaggedly across the chessboard,
but they are actually centered on the king. They circle.
If love is your center, a ring gets put on your finger.
Something inside the moth is made of fire.
— Rumi, A Mystic and a Drunk
We wrap our lives around certain customs and communities, we pursue certain career paths and devote ourselves to certain people. But what is it that centers us there? Are we attracted to comfort and familiarity, or is it something more? When we get a sense of place, from where inside of us do we hear the siren?
If we are the average of the people we spend the most time with, what in turn draws them to us? What energy are we bringing to the universe aside from a refrigerator full of beer? When friends grow old and drift away, when family is busy and distracted by life and the days grow silent, how do you fill the void? What is your fire that warms you in the dark?
Our center is not the frenzied world we surround ourselves with. The problem with finding purpose and identity in a world full of noise is that we don’t hear our own voice. For all the talk of finding a burning purpose and following your heart, most people keep looking the wrong way. Instead of throwing more wood on the fire sometimes you’ve got to let things burn down to their essence. Our answers lie deep in the embers.