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In 1931, freelance writer James Truslow Adams developed the concept of the “American Dream”. It was built on the idea that every person, regardless of their race, creed, financial status or nationality, would have the opportunity to live a “richer, fuller life” and manifest their wildest dreams, no matter how outlandish. America was positioned to be the Promise Land; the place where dreams come true.

This was certainly an honorable dream worth fostering. However, over time, the dream morphed into something more soul-less and self-serving. The quest for an egalitarian society where everyone’s dreams are possible has been replaced with an insatiable quest for more money, fame and immortality.

Generations later, Americans (and many other societies) are realizing that they’ve spent their whole life chasing money, trying to stop time, conforming to the status quo and collecting achievements. But none of it has brought them the fulfillment or happiness they were seeking.

Technology has provided us with the ability to be more connected with humanity, but thus far, that technology remains largely focused on the pursuit of money, power, self-indulgence and achievements. Businesses and governments thrive on selfishness, excess and fear. It’s so pervasive that most of us fail to even notice it anymore.

But I believe we still crave, and ultimately need true human connection. If we strip away the fear and create an environment of love, I believe we will see humans become human again. Ultimately, we have to get back to a place where human connection and relationship trumps the desire for hording money, time and achievements.

The American Dream is continually in a state of self-destruction. I believe we can foster a more altruistic and egalitarian dream for all of humanity. Something we can collectively work towards, support each other and hold each other accountable to.

This is the beginning of a manifesto. One I intend to expound upon and proliferate. It’s not a completed work, just the beginning.

It’s what I want to contribute to. It’s not an idea. It’s not a set of rules, laws or a code. It’s something I believe in. It describes the way in which I am committed to living. Nothing more, and nothing less.

THE EXTRAORDINARY DREAM

We dream of an egalitarian society, centered on love, fostering peace. 

A society free from the clutches of fear or habit of judgment, where relationship and human connection trump time, achievement, comfort and money, no matter the circumstances. 

Our thoughts and choices manifest our reality. A change in our perception can open our eyes to miracles. 

We live our life and our works as art. Everything we do, we do with care. We cannot fail, because there is no end. 

Humanity and the earth are one. Our actions are forever interconnected. Each of us is a collective of the souls that have touched ours. 

Our purpose is to exemplify and proliferate unconditional love in all we do.

I long for an egalitarian society that values relationship over all else. Yes, it’s idealistic, but I’ve come to embrace that perspective. We live in a world where the impossible is very often proven possible. I don’t believe it’s probable, but I do believe it’s possible. And that’s how it starts.

What is the alternative to pursuing this dream? Do nothing? Do worse? Do what you’ve always done, expecting something different? What do you have to lose if you try? You’ll likely lose your status quo membership, but that was boring anyway.

What aspect of your life will you deem to be more important than pursuing this dream? It all sounds like a good idea, but its easy to label this thinking as idealistic. And that makes it even easier to opt of doing anything truly extraordinary.

I’m not starting a movement or asking anyone to follow me. That sounds fun but it’s not my point.

If you want to bring this dream into fruition, just live it. Right now, wherever you are, every second of every day. It’s a lifestyle, not a project. Anything less won’t work.

Fortunately, every changing second presents the opportunity to start again even better than before. Every second is a new opportunity to create and live your Extraordinary Dream. Godspeed.

11 Comments

  1. Joseph Lalonde on April 10, 2012 at 2:58 PM

    Thanks for sharing Jared.

    This is something that I’ve been working towards. More relationships, more caring, more love.

  2. Ashley on April 10, 2012 at 3:06 PM

    Wow – I love this. What an incredible vision. This extraordinary dream is amazing because it is present. It’s not merely looking to the future (i.e. “If I’m a good person now, I’ll get into heaven”) We have the opportunity to create “heaven” here by looking at life with love and a vision of purpose. I love the line “we live our lives as works of art.”

    The thought of never failing only because there is no end…what a great perspective change – quit giving up and living in regret – constantly refine and grow and become better. Great post.

  3. Kettie on April 10, 2012 at 4:31 PM

    I like this post…I like it a lot. This is the sort of life that one can invest in, live fully in. Thanks for posting! I’m planning on it passing this along to my community…

    • Jared Angaza on April 10, 2012 at 6:03 PM

      Thanks Kettie! Please send my love to the family.

      • Kettie on April 10, 2012 at 6:27 PM

        Will do. Mom and I were just speculating about you recently. Hope all is well in your world. Our love to you and Ilea!

  4. Kim A on April 11, 2012 at 12:09 AM

    This is a power packed post with some amazing questions to let our hearts answer!!

    Love it!

    I had to pass this on to many!!

  5. James on April 11, 2012 at 9:30 AM

    Great words, brother. I’m in.

    I’m learning a ton right now about the difference between living in fear, and living with love. Two totally different worlds. Thanks for living an example of love. It’s the example of people like you that will show the world what living with love is all about.

    • Jared Angaza on April 11, 2012 at 11:51 AM

      Thanks bro. You are certainly an excellent example living a life that incites more love around the world. It’s a journey, for all of us. But it’s one I’m enjoying more and more. Glad to be journeying with you bro.

  6. Joanne Miller on April 11, 2012 at 1:04 PM

    I took Dorsey, my art teacher and an incredible artist, to the women’s prison with me on Friday. She talked to the inmates there about their creativity and how each of us have it in us but often it is stifled by others, life, circumstances, etc. The one thing she said that really stuck in my mind is “Art is LOVE” and this so exemplifies what you have said here. Art is an expression of love in so many forms. Great article, Jared and a call to action for us all. I so agree with all you have said. Keep writing………you have a gift.

  7. Carolyne Jimenez on May 3, 2012 at 3:30 AM

    We have been studying the story of the titanic with its centennial anniversary and it has really shown me how much people change with technology but not necessarily for the better. So much went on between the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the twentieth. Though advancements are good our perspective and motives when deriving them shall be just as important. The greater man thought he had become the smaller his God became. Doesn’t the US claim to have every modern advancement known to man I mean certainly we have made huge strides in just the past 100 yeas. Yet, look at us, look at us, we are greedy, spiritually starving, fat, broke, materialistic, over medicated, & most every system that has government control is deplorable. Are food system alone is disgusting! We may not have a lack of food”garbage” but we have a famine of nutrition! But……we are the best and wealthiest nation in the world with every modern convenience known to man? Shouldn’t we be not only thriving but living extraordinarily?

    To live an exceedingly extraordinary life in Christ. My uncontainable, compulsion that He will not let me put to rest. The words settle, just deal with it, its just the way it is, or mediocrity are like fingernails on the chalk board and instantly make me want to fight for something!

    Your post reminds me of these bluefish videos I discovered a few years ago and I couldn’t agree with them more!
    http://www.bluefishtv.com/Store/Downloadable_Video_Illustrations/3307/Definition_of_a_Trader
    http://www.bluefishtv.com/Store/Downloadable_Video_Illustrations/3076/History_of_Traders
    http://www.bluefishtv.com/Store/Downloadable_Video_Illustrations/3301/Are_You_a_Trader_

    Thank you for posting this I needed to be reminded of my dream and why I am striving towards it!
    Blessings,
    Carolyne

    The relationship thing-YES! That is a whole another mouth full!

    • Jared Angaza on May 6, 2012 at 2:15 PM

      I agree with you Carolyne. I actually just had a conversation the other day about technology in regards to whether or not I think it’s actually advanced society in a positive way. As humans, we are born with the ability to give love to the world or to serve our own ego. It’s a choice. But, when we fail to choose, the natural path is that of serving the ego (our selfishness). We actually have to deliberately choose to act as a vessel of love. And it’s typically more difficult, especially during times of persecution. The ego has sort of a gravitational pull on us. If we’re not fighting to go the other way, it will suck us in.

      I believe technology is intrinsically the same. It has a natural pull towards serving the ego. We have to really be deliberate about using it to propagate love and foster peace and relationship. Technology has the ability to bring the world together in a profound way. But it doesn’t naturally happen, and it’s easy to get off track, just as we’ve seen in the US. It’s a constant struggle. One could argue that we were better off without it.

      In those rare times (in the developed world) when technology such as electricity, running water, modes of transportation, etc. are ripped away from us, humanity tends to come together. Like when you’re in the elevator and it stops. In a house and the power goes off. Out of water because of some crazy natural disaster. Those times are often when people come together and connect for the first time, even after crossing paths daily for years and never speaking.

      I feel another blog post coming on. Thanks Carolyne!

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