Saturday, 21 October 2017

[ passion ]

Passion; a powerful or compelling emotion or feeling, as love or hate. A strong or extravagant fondness, enthusiasm, or desire for anything. An outburst of strong emotion or feeling.

That's the literal definition of what passion is. Strong emotion, strong feelings. A forcible enthusiasm for something or someone. But that doesn't quite cover it, not really.

Passion is the bloom of warmth in your chest when you discover your greatest ability in this life. It's the butterflies in your stomach when your crush is near. It's that visceral jolt when your heart is broken by reality.

It's that quiet, fierce intensity you've developed over years, decades perhaps, for something or someone, pursued with your undivided attention, unsure of success, always pursuing, no matter what the cost, no matter the time it takes.

Passion is a quintessential element of our natures; it defines who we are as beings. The depth of it, the lack of it, the level we display it at. It is a seeking, a searching, a constant need.

Sometimes we deride those who we deem have too much of it. Sometimes we dismiss those we believe are without it. Passion - or deficiency of - makes us do strange and wondrous things, and in turn see ourselves as strange and wondrous.

It is a deeply personal thing, and therefore means we search long and arduously for understanding, for recognition, or even just a reflection; the same contained or unrestrained depth of feeling in others as ourselves.


The level of importance to us also depends solely on the individual. Some value integrity and confidence over passion; the quiet walk through life. Some prefer to see emotion written clearly in the atmosphere and enjoy the taste of it on their tongue, the rush of it through their system. 

Some even enjoy the combination, preferring to judge the moment and the circumstance, weighing up what is appropriate at the time. 

Passion is hard to define, but easy to eliminate. A relationship going sour can be described as no longer having passion, a job becoming tedious can be said to have the passion drained out of it. 

When we feel the emotion sucked out of anything, we blame it on lack of passion. Conversely, when a situation becomes too heated, the opposite can be said to be true; we've become too passionate, too involved in the issue.

Passion colours everything. Even if is only to display the absence of it.  


The fervour of such feeling changes with age. Not to say it necessarily gets stronger, but it certainly evolves over time. 

What was once the height of joy in years past, can now seem like an amusing phase that you cannot recollect such depth of response to. The opposite is also true; a passing fancy now engrosses you in a way you couldn't fathom. 

It grows, it evolves, and it also dies. Sometimes harshly, sometimes softly. It changes because you change.


Mark Manson hit a high note when he wrote Find What You Love and Let It Kill You; a piece he wrote around finding what gives your life passion and purpose, and doing it over and over again. Then doing it some more, screwing it up, adjusting, and continuing on. 

The key note here was that you had to keep doing it because you love it. Really, utterly love it. Be committed to it like you are to staying upright and staying in motion. 

Because here's the thing; no one wakes up one day and finds they can be content focusing on one thing day after day, year after year. You do it because you are passionate about it. And that passion consumes, because you know that fulfilment doesn't come without a price. Love doesn't come without pain, happiness doesn't come without tears, and satisfaction doesn't come without blood. 

The other thing is this; when you don't know what you're looking for, you have to look absolutely everywhere and try absolutely everything. No one draws you a map or hands you a guidebook. You can't check your own software and see the programming path. 

You have to hunt and seek and throw yourself into every crevice without a rope or even a hope of ever getting back out. You have to find that thing, make peace with the fact that it may never be exactly what you thought it would be, and build on it. 

Every day. Every time it comes to mind. Until it has a spirit of its own. Until it breathes life into you. See it what it is, and not what you thought it would be.

And then keep working on it. Keep changing. Keep evolving your passion. 


River of Dreams - Billy Joel

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