In each lifetime, our work is simply to do our best. We come into the world with a vision, with an energy, an impetus for greatness. We come into the world as babes, still celebrating the triumph of having acquired the opportunity of a body. We arrive filled with exuberance for that privilege. Our life unfolds. We grow.  We stumble and at times we fall. We become conditioned. We learn. We assimilate. We forget.

We love, we nurture, we leave some kind of mark on everyone we encounter on our journey: on jobs held, people loved or not loved. We leave our mark and build our empires or our humble abodes. And,  if we are lucky, we are aware. And we begin to pay attention and slow down. And perhaps we begin to remember … the exuberance with which we arrived on this world 50 or 60 or 70 years before. And if we are still fortunate in this remembering, we can delight in it and see the baby we once were, the child we once were, the adolescent and adult we once were. And if we are even more blessed with awareness we observe that in fact we have done our work – the work of this lifetime. And our work is nobody else’s work. No one else could have done it but us. It has been only ours to do and we have done it, as best we have been able.

No matter if we’ve felt at times we wanted to have done more or gained more wealth or notoriety or visibility. We cannot all be the first to step foot on the moon. We cannot all discover the cure to a major illness. We cannot all be the inspiring leaders, the great orators, the great saints. But in living our life, our very own life to live … in doing our work we make it possible for all others in this colorful dazzling tapestry that is Life … to do their work, reach their possibilities, shine their light.

So when those who our culture perceives as great, those who our societies celebrate as heroes walk by or are paid well, or take a bow … it is rightful for us all to feel their triumph in our hearts as our own. It is right and just for us all to enjoy their accomplishments as our own. For we have helped make it possible.  In living our life and in doing our very own work we have made it possible for everyone else to leave their mark, dream their dreams; accomplish their greatness, or their simplicity, or their humility.

No one else could have lived this year of our life, and WE have done so. No one else could have done our work, for it was ours to do. This year we saw the passing of a great leader who triumphed against the odds. We cannot all be a Nelson Mandela. But together, each doing our work, each living our life, we wove the tapestry of a world in which he, Nelson Mandela, was able to flourish and live and inspire.  We have done so. And in witnessing this living of our own life story, as best we can, the Earth and Sky and all of Divine rejoices. And together, we remember.  We remember what it is that we can do, together. We remember who we truly are.