In ancient days, knights believed in dragons, and they believed that dragons were dangerous. Their self-proclaimed job was to find and slay the dragons to save the villagers from danger, and perhaps the bonus would be that they’d woo the fair damsel who hid high in the tower of the castle, hoping to live dragon-free.
Believing in dragons gave the knights an honorable profession. In the dark of the forest, every shadow that happened their way had them draw their swords, ready to slay. As they’d get to the sunny meadow, the shadows would disappear, and the knight would take credit for having slayed the dragon. He’d ride triumphantly into town, sword raised high, bragging about his victory.
There was a time in my twenties when I’d boast of my victories over dragons, trying to get the admiration of my neighbors and perhaps woo the local damsel. Eventually I realized the futility of such a cockamamie scheme. What possible gain did I really think I would get boasting about the dragons I’d slain, accomplishments that were merely figments of my youthful imagination.
Even the animals of the jungle act with unerring effectiveness under the urges of their instincts. While human beings, who are endowed with incredible intuitive intelligence, ignore that intelligence and blunder on, fighting imaginary dragons in hopes of getting approval.
When I stopped fighting dragons, I began finding real purpose in my life. I began setting goals that were of service to the world and meaningful to me. Only then did I begin using my energy productively and begin truly loving my life.
It is clear that only a new look at one’s life, when he feels he has no purpose, can set him free of the confusion that can waste so much time and productive energy. Give yourself time for reflection. Ask yourself often, “What do I value? What is important to me?” Come to know yourself. The rewards will be remarkable.