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  • Writer's pictureCoexistence Steven - Architect, Meditator, Investor

The Life of a Helper: Why Leaving My Family + Friends Was the Hardest + Easiest Decision of My Life


 

I wanted to write a reflection as to why I am even in Brisbane living this life, and why I left Perth to follow this path. I also wanted to give an insight into and try to explain what I do as a "helper" (I'm more than just a meditation guide!).


I probably can't articulate what I want to say so well verbally, so I'm hoping the people I care about will read it and understand me, as I wanted to pour my heart out into this writing.


I is going on an adventuuuuuure :D :D :D




Life in Perth before coming to Brisbane


Before I left Perth, I had an architecture business I was casually running. I was working on projects I wanted to work on after spending years taking everything I could get my hands on to build up the business.


Architecture was fun and I loved it, but it's just 1 step in the journey...

I also had a job on the wharf, which was an incredible job. I absolutely loved it. It was breaking my body, and the work was gruelling, but I loved it.


I loved all the boys there, I loved the comradarie, I loved being outside, and I loved moving my body to work.


And it paid so bloody well, and the conditions were ridiculously good.


It was a true blessing.


I initially took the job as a way of helping me make more money so I could build up my architecture business and pay for marketing, but I ended up enjoying it more than sitting in front of a computer all day!


As an architect, I had volunteered my skills many times to the meditation I practice which is a non-profit organisation. I helped with the design and drafting of 2 of our meditation centres in Western Australia.


I knew we were wanting to expand into Brisbane, but due to COVID we had to put a hold on those plans. So once the borders opened up, I visited Brisbane to help look for a new meditation centre.


At the time, I wasn't really thinking about coming here to run the meditation centre, I just wanted to help however I could, because it always felt so good to be part of something greater than myself.


We eventually fell in love with 1 particular meditation centre where I now live - and what I loved so much about it was how it made me feel. How I was able to use my body and mind to make that decision that "this is the one" (which was something I was writing my architectural dissertation, so it felt very rewarding!).


After returning to Perth, at some point over the following months, people kept asking me if I was going to move to Brisbane and it had never occured to me. But then I thought:

"hey, why don't I go and try and run it? It's something you've been curious about, and you'll get a lot of benefit for your mind for doing that kind of work."

It was for very self-centred reasons. I just wanted to be more enlightened.


And so I did what I always do when it comes to these things - I asked the Universe, and with faith, I waited (but really, it had already told me!).


I always ask the Universe, the Mother and Father and everything and everyone

It was clear to me that the Universe was steering me in that direction, so I decided to take the leap of faith, and I set myself a time when I would quit everything, and I would go and embark on this new journey.


I decided to wait for my first nephew Leo's 1st birthday before I left (Hah, gosh, even mentioning his name tears me up, I really bloody love that kid - I want to show you a photo of how damn gorgeous he is, but he's too young to give me permission :'( )


It was at once the hardest and easiest decision I've ever made.






What made it a hard decision?


What made it hard, was I absolutely love my family and friends.


With my family, we have a Macedonian background, so we're a very tight knit and we see each other a lot (sometimes too much haha).


And with my friends, it's always been about quality not quantity for me.


But honestly, leaving Leo behind was the hardest thing for me. As much as I love kids and have always dreamed of raising my own, I knew if I was going to do this kind of work of completely devoting myself to others, I couldn't spend any time trying to raise my own children.


So having to miss out on Leo growing up was the most difficult part of the decision knowing he was the closest thing to a son I'd ever have.


Once I made my mind up, I agonized for weeks and weeks over how I was going to tell my parents. In some way, we always seek our parent's approval and I just wanted them to know I was making the right decision. But leaving behind such an incredible job I thought they might disapprove.


Mum and Dad have set a good example of love and kindness to others

I also knew (through meditation), that if I had that idea in my mind that they'd judge me or be upset, then I'd be putting that vibration out and they'd respond according to that....


And well, they did, in varying degrees - Dad just kind of begrudgingly accepted it, and Mum was a bit more alarmed. Unfortunately, despite meditating, I couldn't get my mind under control and tell them with "no mind".


But like all things, time passes, and life goes on, and all the worries and concerns I had were only in my mind.


1 of my Baba and Dedo's - they worry too much about me while I'm over here, and that makes me sad too :(

I've never been one who likes to be fussed over - I get that from my Dedo (Macedonian for grandfather). Hahahaha in fact he yells at people when they get him a present and make a big deal out of his birthday and turns a happy occasion into a big fuss (the irony...). He's got a fiery temperament, but such a wonderful, loving heart. I'm very much like him.



So because of that, I went around and just casually told my family I was leaving.


I've never been one to seem like I cared about my family.


I was always half hearted and pretended like I was stronger than being dependant on the family unit. I felt like I was always viewed as a black sheep, and I took that character on.


I was always contrarian, and sometimes just out of habit.


But I've always deeply loved my family. However, I've also always tried to have that same love for others. Even though I know I never truly did, I at least tried, and I thought that made me a good person, but it actually just made me very arrogant and obnoxious to be around.


In trying to be loving towards others, I think I hid my love for my family from them.


So, it wasn't surprising when I told my Baba (Macedonian for grandmother) I was leaving. She was shocked and disappointed, and she said:

"ohhhh so you're just going to leave us? You don't care about us! You don't love us."

And she meant it. And it hurt. This was the consequence of the way I'd been, so I deserved it.


Since then, I've really tried to be expressive in showing my love. For example, last year I called me Baba up when I'd heard she hurt herself.


This is my other Baba and this photo says everything about her! - such a beautiful, open hearted woman (and my ex wife Sarah at our wedding (it was a beautiful, fun day and I have no regrets at all except that I wish I was more loving and appreciative!))

When she picked up the phone she said:

"Hello, who's this?"

Me:

"Have a guess"

Baba:

"Is that you Michael?"

(Michael is my older brother, we all sound the same on the phone!)


Me:

"Nooo no, guess again - it's your favourite grandson"

Baba:

"Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh hiiiiii Pauly"

(Paul is my younger brother, and I'm in the middle) awwwww I was a little hurt, but hey I deserved it hahaha. It was pretty bloody funny though in hindsight.


Even though I'm across the country from my family, in some ways I feel a lot closer to them now, and I always make an extra effort to instigate conversation in our group chats, so they know I'll never, ever forget about them and they're always in my heart no matter where I am.


Especially my parents.


I'd never really had heart to heart conversations with either of my parents except when I was going through a divorce. So, I've made an extra effort since then to really try to have heart to heart conversations with them regularly.


Before I felt like all our conversations were somewhat superficial, but I really want them to know I'm OK so they don't worry about me.


I don't want anyone ever worrying about me like that, least of all my parents.





What made it an easy decision?


It was easy because I always do my best to follow the guidance of the Universe.


Following the Universe is following your True Mind!

Tears come to my eyes and my stomach is churning.


The tears come from gratitude, but my stomach churns because there is this deeeeeeeeeep frustration, because I know the only people who can begin to understand what I'm about to say are the ones who are also on this path.


So I'll just do my best without sounding arrogant. So please forgive me and just remember this is just my own mind and I want you to understand what this means to me in my mind.


I've always been someone who wants justice and peace. It's a by-product of being bullied so much when I was younger, but it's also ancestral....


Ajde Makedonija!

My ancestors came from Macedonia where their sense of identity was stripped from them, even to this day (stop dividing the damn world up, we need unity not division!)


I've spoken about this in other posts - about my desire for the world to live with unity.


World peace - I think it's one of the most important things on the planet! How much suffering would end if we lived harmoniously? Equality, peace, coexistence.


I just don't accept the narrative that "the world is how it is, there's nothing you can do about it".


Fuck that! No way!


But that's looking at things on a material, physical level. Even more important than that is knowing why we were even born and how we can actually achieve that peace.


It seems people all over the world are trying to find an answer to that question in a way that suites their mind -

"find your why"
"find your purpose"
"find your passion"
"find your love"

There's so many books, talks and videos on these topics.


Without these answers to anchor our existence, it seems unbearable to me to think about why we even go through life - so people don't dare to slow down and wonder.


In the middle of the infinite universe, on a planet seemingly in constant turmoil, rotating endlessly around a huge ball of gas - with most of us just struggling to make ends meet.


The Universe is infinite. INFINITE. If you stop to think, it's a frightening and fascinating thing

We're too busy worrying about paying a mortgage or feeding our families, which distracts us from having to face that question of existence.


I followed all of these questions, and all of the answers I got lead to the same dead end.


I wasn't satisfied because the answer to these questions should be universal - it should apply to everyone. It has to be objective; only then can it be true!


How the hell is a kid in Africa who can't even eat going to give two shits about finding his purpose or his love? What happens when AI comes and takes all the jobs away from everyone? Where is your passion and your why then?


It has to be objective.


*sigh*


And this is where it gets so hard.


This is where I feel sooooooooo vulnerable, because I know everyone I've ever tried to express this to thinks I'm either crazy, on drugs, or delusional.


Even if you try and hide it, you can't hide the rhythm of your heart with words.


But the fact of the matter is this: the reason why you were born was to live together, forever!


That's it, that's all there is to it.


The heaven, paradise and bliss that is spoken of and I was always skeptical and critical of is not something you get to when your physical body dies, and it's not something that's reserved for any one particular religious ideology - it's something that belongs to everyone, the whole!


By pure luck I had discovered that it's when your self in your mind dies that you become one with the Universe and that is the heaven, paradise, and bliss!


That's when you live forever!


There's NOTHING more important than this!


That is the single most important thing.


You can call it finding God, Buddha, Allah, Soul, Spirit, Heaven, Bliss, Paradise, Universe - I don't care what you call it.


Facts are facts and the Truth is Truth, and behind the layers of all of your conditioning is that 1 fundamental desire that unites all of humanity.


People will say "oh I don't care about living forever" and that's because you live according to that conditioning - like a robot programmed from your life.


And I know what you're thinking "this is just YOUR mind".


And you're right! I can't refute that. That's where the frustration comes from.


All the frustrations buried deep in this being need to be expelled some way or another....

And that's the problem.


So, it can be very lonely.


When you tell your ex-wife you've found the meaning of life and she thinks you're a religious nutjob.


When you tell people you love, and they try to be loving and understanding but can't hide their judgement.


When you tell your friends, and they want to get into debates and tell you you're wrong and think you're in a cult, even though you knew it before you were part of anything else.


When all you want to do is show them the way! They don't have to listen to me rant about it - all they have to do is discover it for themselves too. Then they'll see it IS the Truth.


But they don't even try.





Then what is my role as a "Helper"?


As a helper I try to guide people to that place within them.


I *hate* calling myself a meditation guide.


I feel like when I say I'm a meditation guide, people think I just sit around on my arse all day and do fuck all, chanting and getting high on incense (not that there's anything wrong with this!)


But actually, I've never been busier in my life.


I thought my architecture degree was hard (and it was, the regular semester all-nighters are hard to top), but there's so much more impact here so it has a lot more significance in my mind and it's 7 days a week, so there's always something to do.


If 1 person tries to come on a Sunday and we're closed - I've failed to help.


I'm here trying to help you find the meaning of life and in that process resolve every single one of your problems.


All of your pain, stress, burden and questions and doubts about life disappear. You find the source of happiness, wisdom, peace, calmness, focus and clarity.


The job you work your arse off for - for all that money, the cars, clothes, houses. That all disappears. Don't you wnat to find out what it's all about instead of chasing the things you've been programmed to believe are important?


Alexander the Great conquered and owned the entire world and wanted to be buried empty handed for the world to see there was no meaning in any of that.


IS there any meaning to life?
A profound message.... But humans can not learn

I'm you, you are me, and we are one, and there's nothing more to it than that.


You'll likely think I'm crazy, and I've had many people try to persuade me not to follow this path, me included.


And trust me, there are times I wish I hadn't seen what I've seen.


I wish I could just live a "simple life" of going to work, coming home, playing video games, and raising a family. You have no idea how much I wish for those things sometimes.


It makes me slam my fist on the table God damnit!


Sometimes I wonder - did I choose this path or did this path choose me?


Tears come to my eyes. I'll never experience the joys of raising my own child. I'll never experience that love. I've chosen to devote as much of my waking time and energy into helping others rather than raising my own child.


But it doesn't mean I don't want to.


This can be a lonely path. I don't think there's any partner for me. I've tried to resign myself to that (but I'm not there yet).


But in any case, I'm doing just fine. I hope you don't think I'm crazy (and it's OK if you do, I still love you).


This is an adventure of a lifetime.


Will I be able to have any lasting impact? Who knows...


But I won't die wondering.


There's truly nothing else I'd rather be doing.


Plain and simple, in my mind, it's the most important thing in the world - all that there is, is the work I need to do and keep doing, no matter what, and to just keep trying to live for the world.


And I can't stop.


Even if I want to.


I can't.


<3 <3 <3


Meditate, eat right, and exercise - I've come to find that they're ALL important for your health and well-being!

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