Being Your Own Village
by Madisyn Taylor
Simple survival requires us to be in possession of many skills. The pursuit of dreams requires many more. Most individuals rely on the support of a village, whether peopled by relatives or community members, to effectively address the numerous ways we need assistance. This can mean anything from asking favors of acquaintances and leaning on loved ones for support to paying a skilled artisan to handle specialized tasks. However, each human being is born with the capacity to be their own village. We embody many roles throughout our lifetimes, all of which are representative of our capacity for self-sufficiency and self-determination. In different moments in our lives, we are our own counselor, janitor, caregiver, cook, healer, teacher, and student. Our willingness to joyfully take on these roles grants us the power to maintain control over the direction our life's journey takes.
In times past, human beings learned all of the skills needed for survival. Today, the majority of people specialize in a single discipline, which they hone throughout their lives. Thus, many of us feel uncomfortable standing at the helm of our own existence. We question our ability to make decisions concerning our own health, happiness, and welfare, and are left feeling dependent and powerless. But the authority to take ultimate responsibility for our lives is simply a matter of believing that we have the necessary faith and intelligence to cope with any circumstance the universe chooses to place in our path. Proving that we can each be our own villages through action enables us to accept that we are strong enough to exist autonomously. Cooking, cultivating a garden of fruits and vegetables, undertaking minor home repair, or adopting a healthier lifestyle can help you reassert your will.
Being your own village does not mean embracing isolation, for a balanced life is built upon the dual foundations of the inner and the outer villages. Rather, being your own village is a celebration of your wondrous inner strength and resourcefulness, as well as an acknowledgment of your innate ability to capably steer the course of your life.