This is a direct excerpt from Sahara Rose’s latest book Discovering Your Dharma: A Vedic Guide to Finding Your Purpose.

What is Dharma?

The word dharma is a Sanskrit term with over sixteen different meanings, but the one we’ll be rolling with is “your soul’s purpose.” Your dharma is your big why, the reason you’re here with all these thoughts, needs, and desires. We were each born with a unique purpose and this human experience is about remembering ours. The first concept you have to understand to fully receive this book is that you are not your body or your mind, but rather your soul. You live in your body, have an operating system called your  mind, but neither of them are you. You are the consciousness that lives within.

The second concept central to this book is reincarnation.

You’ve chosen to incarnate on this plane for a very specific reason, and that is to remember the truth of who you are.

In Vedic spirituality, we are souls that exist across time and space, in multiple lifetimes. During the course of each lifetime, we learn important lessons that advance our soul. We choose to incarnate on this planet because it is the Earth school — it is the only place in  the cosmos where souls can come to grow.

Before incarnation, we have each chosen soul lessons that will prepare us to embody our dharma — our soul’s purpose. Your soul chose to incarnate in this body, in your circumstances, with your parents, at this point in time, because it was the exact environment your soul needed to embody its dharma. We step into the maya — illusion — with the purpose of remembering the truth of who we are. We agree to the temporary amnesia — being born in this human costume, forgetting the magic that we are inside. The journey of remembering is what prepares us to embody our dharma.

However, remembering is hard in this Earth school where fear has largely taken over. As children, we know our magic. We dream big and don’t apologize for it. But the fears of our surroundings and society build up. You may have been told you were crazy, out of touch with reality, or even made afraid of your own intuitive ability. We give up our power to others who claim they know us better than we do ourselves. We no longer trust our creative impulses or speak our truths. We become a shell of the version we once were.

Think back to a time in your life when you were totally free.  Maybe it was running naked outside or writing fairy tales about mystical beings or creating potions with herbs and plants. That is the truth of who you are, and she is still inside of you. All you have to do is remember.

Your dharma is encoded inside of you. Your calling is to recall who you are.

Your potential is limitless. If you knew how powerful you truly are, you’d be laughing at why you ever doubted yourself, even for one moment. You’d see that everything you wanted was wanting you back. The reason you wanted it was that it was always yours — the temporary amnesia made you forget.

Your soul has chosen this lifetime before birth because it’s the experience needed to fulfill your dharma. Your soul may have chosen difficult parents or circumstances because it’s exactly what you needed to gain the strength, patience, and awareness to fulfill your dharma. The healing you do in this lifetime is not just  for yourself but for your entire ancestral lineage.

For example, I was born into a lineage of female suppression, child marriage, and lack of opportunity. So I came back as a fiery ass female ready to kick the old paradigm’s booty, fully embody my  purpose, and remind women they are goddesses. If you are reading this book, you too are a person in your lineage who is meant to heal the ancestral wounds. It’s major work, but I promise you it’s one hundred percent worth the ride. Remember — you are your ancestors’ greatest dream.

I want you to take a moment and think about your ancestors.  

What have they gone through?

What is the common thread that has been passed along throughout  your lineage? 

Are there any intergenerational traumas that have been passed  down? 

How are you, in this lifetime, bringing them to surface to be healed  and transmuted?

Just as we were born with ancestral baggage, we were also  born with lineage gifts. These may come directly from your parents or grandparents or ancestors further back with whom you may not be familiar.

What have you learned from your maternal lineage?

What have you learned from your paternal?

How are you your ancestors’ living dream today?

I was gifted my mother’s zest for life and my father’s determination, a wonderful balance of yin and yang. My last name, Ket abi, literally means “book” in Farsi, Hindi, Arabic, and Urdu, and my ancestors were publishers. There is no coincidence that my  dharma is to write books and share this wisdom with you. You may be wondering, “Why would we be born with a temporary amnesia that made us forget our dharmas if the universe wants us to embrace them?” Because the purpose of this human experience is to go through the journey of remembering your  dharma. This journey is what prepares and unlocks the power, wisdom, strength, and vulnerability you need to truly embody your dharma. You were born knowing, but only through the  quest of remembering are you ready to embody. We all want the same things, but not in the same ways. We all want to experience love, fulfillment, freedom, peace, and joy. However, the way each of us experiences these attributes is unique. It was meant to be unique so we can experience diversity as a  species — this is the key to happiness. Source (consciousness, the universe, God/dess, whatever you like to call it) could have created every flower the same way, but it created spring cherry blossoms and summer hydrangeas and autumn sunflowers and winter roses. Each flower blossoms in its own expression, at its own time, so the entire world can relish its specific and temporary beauty. Dharma is the same. Just as we need the diversity of the flowers in order to appreciate them, we need the diversity of dharmas for us to appreciate them. We were designed, like nature, to bloom  at our own times and in our own ways.

Sahara Rose is a best-selling author, speaker and host of the wildly popular, The Highest Self Podcast. She is leading the conversation around Ayurveda and spirituality and has been called “a leading voice for the millennial generation into the new paradigm shift” by Deepak Chopra. Her latest book Discover Your Dharma is available for purchase here.

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