I believe that a passionate life is often nurtured and lived in an environment of passionate lives. If your grandfather demonstrated great joy in living, and you were around him much when you were little, then you learned some joy from him. If you hang out with people who are always exploring ideas, coming up with projects, and working at the betterment of community, then you can’t help but get involved and learn along with them. If you’re the type of person who prefers lots of solitude in which to write or paint or savor blessings, then it’s possible that you draw inspiration from a more invisible community: favorite authors and artists (alive or dead), films and music, or a friend in cyberspace who shares your interests and cares about your work.
The point is, passion for life is not simply an individual trait. It multiplies with the passionate people who exist together—who work together or share a hobby or a neighborhood. Passion breeds passion. As with so many other important features of human life, passion ultimately is enhanced by community. The community may be large, or it may consist of just a few people who know one another and feed their collective desires and dreams.
If you already live a passionate life, then you might ask these questions: Is there anyone I might invite into this sphere of fulfilled living? Might someone benefit by being included in some of my conversations or activities?
If you feel that your life should be a lot more passionate, then ask these questions: Do I know anyone who lives passionately? And if so, how might I connect to that person? Is there someone I can spend time with who will help me envision my life with a little more hope and creativity?
How have other people influenced your ability to experience the passionate life?