Benefit By Being An “Experience Collector”


Sit down and pause with me a moment.

For a few minutes, cast aside any religious, spiritual, or philosophical beliefs you might hold.


What if we are spiritual beings inhabiting a physical body visiting Earth to collect as many experiences as possible — or perhaps it might all be part of some master plan we signed up for or were assigned to? What if the purpose was to help our spirit, soul, or whatever you want to call it, evolve? Is this an idea you could embrace?

I have no idea if this concept is true, but as a belief it just might work as we share our journey together on this blessedly, crazy spinning rock.

We all share invited and uninvited experiences, intended and unintended ones, and others we assign to sheer fate or happenstance — luck. As humans, our tendency is to cling to the pleasant and safe experiences and avoid the fearful, unintended ones; and we are quick to assign meaning to them all.

What if the meaning is simply to experience all of them as part of our individual and collective evolution? What if we are to detach a bit and simply observe them?

Who hasn’t experienced pain, loss, failure, disappointment, anxiety, fear, grief and on the other side, love, joy, abundance, and triumph, etc.? Those strong emotional experiences, particularly gathered when we were young tend to stick with us and then get reinforced by those around us, creating a blue print for our life.

Now what if you are to discard that blue print? We are always just a belief away from relief and  transformation.

We tend to be practiced, skillful judges, giving good and bad values to everything, but what if we were just to observe and ask ourselves, “What does this experience have to teach me?”

Consider the concept of surrendering. The word ‘surrender’ for me can be very powerful as opposed to ‘allowing’ for surrender connotes a conscious act and not some passive activity. With that in mind, what if you were to surrender to what is? If you begin to subscribe to the idea that we are here to collect all variety of experiences, adding another one is just icing on the cake isn’t it?

Surrender the need to judge, embrace, or assign meaning to every good and bad experience whether invited or uninvited. What can you learn from each? In that manner you learn to love what is. It doesn’t matter if you are an Athiest, Agnostic, or what religion you subscribe to. Love is the universal lubricant and growth is the path.

Many of us act as if the world was just waiting for us and it should respond according to our beliefs, expectations, and wishes. That just ain’t so — just a product of our ego. When life doesn’t cooperate, which it often doesn’t, it can throw us into a tailspin. In reality, we are just a just a tiny, carcasses of flesh and water here for a spec of time too small to have the impact we imagine on the Universe. But we do come with our precious consciousness and perhaps even more important, our life’s purpose.

Ask yourself. What can this pain teach me? How about an insult or waiting in an endless line? How about the loss of a loved one or some cruel act or a even a so-called “Act of God?” Trying to assign meaning to them is usually futile and often disempowering. This concept does not mean that we should all of a sudden live a passive life, but to embrace it with loving preparation, kindness, service, action, and the curiosity to learn from whatever comes our way. Can you begin to realize how by doing that it can begin to melt away anxiety, worry, and fear?

As some communities profess, we suffer in relation to the depth of our attachments. This can be material things, relationships, beliefs, experiences, ego, etc. What if we just observe them, learn, and release them?

In my eighth decade traveling around the sun, I am just beginning to come to this conclusion. Seeing our lifetimes as an opportunity to learn and grow may not fit everyone’s beliefs, but it has for me. It’s made me more chill and less anxious, more curious and less judgmental. It has allowed me to better surf life’s waves. I am able to cope with and even appreciate even the uninvited, the boring, scary, dreaded, and fearful when I continue to collect experiences and see them as opportunities for growth. Could they all be what I had originally signed up for?

One Response to “Benefit By Being An “Experience Collector””

  1. Nancy Marker

    You took the words right out of my mouth! Beautifully written article and evidence of a life lived thoughtfully, authentically, and with integrity. I don’t know you personally but follow you a bit on FB. Thank you for this piece! Nancy

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