Have you ever thought about the phrase, "Moral Compass?"
It occasionally crops-up in the popular culture and media commentary, "So-and-so has really lost his moral compass", or "She's got a good moral compass".
We all like to feel that we have a good moral compass - that we don't stray from an ethical "True North". In reality, everyone's moral compass has some magnetic deviation - what's ethically right for me, mightn't be so for you. But we can usually tell when we're heading in the "right kind of direction" - it might be North-East, but it's not "going South!"
We're currently developing an out-of-hours course for high-schoolers and young adults. The process of conceiving what we'll be delivering gave me cause to look more closely at my own life, and it was a bit of a revelation...
My parents were very good at instilling what we should not do - the stuff that was materially destructive, dangerous or painful to ourselves or others - "Don't do that, you'll break the light", "Stop it, before someone gets hurt." I also got the flip-side; "Try to kind", or "Don't say or do something to someone else that you wouldn't want them to do to you."
This "moral compass" education is good for orienting us in relation to taking care of people and things, not harming others and not being anti-social. So that's a good basis for co-existing peacefully, and not causing offence with everything you encounter...
But is it a sufficient basis on which to live a fulfilling life - is it enough to "do no harm, and be kind to others?" I don't think so, and yet that's certainly all many of us get to start making our way in life... If you had more guidance than this, well done - kudos to your parents and mentors!
Our minds and bodies are essentially designed to operate on auto-pilot, designed to learn- and do more and more- by habit - as long as you're not crashing into things or breaking down, you can live your whole life without thinking about it...
Wouldn't it be good to live your life understanding your own map, with your own dashboard of instruments to guide you? As individuals, surely that's our best opportunity to achieve our greatest potential, our true purpose?
Our senses and perceptions, our bodies and emotional, intuitive mind, together with our rational mind are our personal instrumentation and guidance to help us on our individual journeys. Are you taking the time to stop, be still, to feel and see your situation - to check you're really on the right track?