Within each of us, there is an inward sea – a vast, unfathomable depth of being that contains the essence of who we truly are. In the midst of this inner expanse lies an island, and upon that island stands an altar, fiercely guarded by an angel with a flaming sword. This sacred space represents the core of our authenticity, the nucleus of our deepest values and beliefs. Nothing can gain entry and take root on that hallowed ground unless it bears the mark of our innermost authority and truth.

We spend so much of our outer lives caught up in the currents and eddies of daily demands, societal pressures, and the unrelenting pull of achievement and ambition. In that turbulent sea of activity, it is all too easy to lose touch with the still point radiating from our inner sanctum. We become unmoored, drifting aimlessly, shaped by external forces rather than the lodestar burning eternal within.

That is why the dream is so vital, the dream nestled in the heart that gives significance to living itself. Without that dream kindling our inner fire, we cannot help but become spiritual deserts, dreary wastelands where the soul withers and begins its inexorable descent into rot and decay. The dream need not be grandiose, no sweeping vision or world-changing prospect. It is simply that quiet persistence, that exciting whisper amidst the monotony, that touch of meaning elevating the ordinary into something transcendent.

To safeguard the dream, to nourish the wellspring of our authenticity from which dreams emanate, we must cultivate the quiet spaces that allow us to go inward. We must withdraw from the noise and clamor, retreating into the silence where we can truly listen. For it is in that place of deep listening that we begin to recognize the disparate strands of our inner life – the objects of our thoughts, feelings, and actions which are merely the results emanating from some deeper subjectivity.

As we gaze inwardly with unwavering honesty, we come to accept the whole of who we are, the light and dark strands woven inextricably together into the tapestry of our being. This radical self-acceptance reveals that we are neither wholly virtuous nor irredeemably flawed, but a profound mixture whose trajectory may bend toward desirable or undesirable ends.

The light then begins to rise over the landscape of our inner world, illuminating the terrain we had long stumbled across in semi-blindness. We may balk at first, stubbornly refusing to identify or name the source of this luminescence. But as our eyes adjust, a wondrous sense of wholeness washes over us, a feeling of being securely anchored within our truest nature.

With this grounding in authentic selfhood, we can then turn toward the pivotal question – what do we stand for? What are the immutable principles, the core values to which we have pledged the fullness of our inner being? Not the causes we profess with words, not the affiliations we claim with our dollars or social associations, but the beliefs that we would uphold at any cost, even if the whole world stood opposed.

It is here, in this exploration of our deepest commitments, that we discover the essence of our faith – that binding vision which imbues our fleeting existence with ultimate meaning and consecrates each breath with the purpose of serving something greater than our little selves.

When we abide at this level of being, the turmoil of our outer world does not cease, but neither does it retain its power to disturb us at the core. We begin to move in rhythm with the cadence of the eternal, a steady pulse that persists beneath the churning waves. Our triumphs and failures, momentary furors of achievement or lack thereof, take on the quality of surface phenomena while the current of our authenticity runs utterly unstopped in its prescribed course.

This is the elusive wellspring we pursuit, the hidden source of prayer in its purest distillation – the unwavering inner vote we cast for the values, dreams and aspirations most resonant with the care of our soul. When we bring our entire being into sweet
alignment with that uncorrupted essence, all else benefits from its ordering influence.

Though the way is arduous and the miles are long, the inward journey beckons to each of us with its siren call. Will we press on with dogged devotion, like that world-worn but indefatigable hound endlessly tracking the coldest scent? Will we crest the final ridge to bask in the revelatory light shining from our inner altar, shining from the altar of the only God we can ever truly worship – the God of our own most sacred longings and unquenchable yearnings?

The course is perilous, with many a misstep awaiting along the way. But what choice do we have except to carry on, following the path of our souls wherever it may lead? Holding aloft the torch of our dreams, indivisible from the dream of life itself, we press forward in faith, determined to claim the whole of our birthright, come what may.


Dreams and aspirations give profound significance to human life, providing an essential wellspring for the spirit. Each person contains an “inward sea” with an island housing an altar guarded by an angel that only allows passage to those things aligning with one’s deepest values and authority. To chart this inner realm, one must undertake radical self-acceptance, recognizing both positive and negative aspects to gain self-understanding. Crucially, one must identify the core beliefs and principles they genuinely stand for beyond external stances – the quality of faith shaping their view of life’s meaning. Through quieting the mind and listening inwardly, light and wholeness can emerge. What ultimately matters is aligning authentically with the values and aspirations that become the “will of the only God you can worship.” Despite life’s turmoil, this inner compass provides a steady rhythm that can ultimately bring order. Aligning with this deepest essence is the true nature of prayer.

Key Points

1. Dreams and aspirations are essential for the human spirit and give significance to living. Without dreams, life becomes dreary and lifeless.

2. Each person has an inner realm, described as an “inward sea” with an island containing an altar guarded by an angel with a flaming sword. Only things that align with one’s deepest values and authority can pass through to this altar.

3. To chart this inner realm, one must accept oneself wholly, without judgment, recognizing both positive and negative aspects. This enables self-understanding.

4. One must identify what they truly stand for and believe in at the core, beyond external stances or affiliations. This reflects one’s faith in the meaning of life.

5. The process involves quieting the mind, listening to one’s inner voice, and allowing light and wholeness to emerge from within.

6. What ultimately matters is aligning with one’s deepest, authentic values and aspirations, which become the “will of the only God you can worship.”

7. Despite outward circumstances, aligning with this inner compass brings a steady, rhythmic cadence that can ultimately bring order and fulfillment. This is the true essence of prayer.