You have to understand the purpose of life. The purpose of life is to do something which will live forever. -Harbajan Singh Yogi

Yogis say we have three knots, and these prevent us from manifesting our talents and contributing to our own well-being and the well-being of the whole. Although some yogic traditions specify pranayama (breathing), mudra (hand positions), and asana (postures) to overcome these knots, it is possible that understanding them alone is sufficient to untie the mystery for some.

However, these practices center a person inside of themselves, placing them into position to hear the voice of their heart and unite them with spirit, perhaps for the first time. For this reason, meditation is an excellent adjunct practice to untie these knots. The three knots are ignorance, desire, and action.

The first knot is our ignorance, believing that the light we are seeking is not inside of us, that we are separate from what we want, and that we are disconnected from the whole. According to yogis, our true state is one of being connected to the source of joy and inspiration and all others. What we want to share with the world is what we must share, because it is the purpose of our existence.

The causes of our ignorance are overarching cultural beliefs which teach us to seek outside of ourselves what can only be found inside. Because of this, many spend a lifetime ignoring their inner yearnings and chasing something other than their true purpose, which does not bring them joy. The antidote is learning to listen and connect with the self deeply and follow one’s inner voice.

The second knot is desire which results in excess striving and ambition. This desire causes people to believe there is a separateness from what they love. If a person has overcome the first knot and has identified his true purpose, all he must do is move forward with joy and steadiness and activate what is already inside of him. Because the passion and ability already exists inside of the person, he does not need to struggle.

In order to believe in his potential to do the thing he is here to do; he must trust that it is already in him. He must commit to moving in steadiness and in a strategic way to fulfill his purpose. In doing this, he listens to his inner guidance and directs his energy as he feels his way forward.  He surrenders to wanting what is best and moves forward into his purpose.

The third and final knot is action. A person must connect with source energy that brings all things to form and then do the work. When a person is in intimate contact with our source, or Creator, action toward reaching our intended goal will express uniquely. Our purpose will be fulfilled when our will for ourselves is unified with the will of the Creator.

Through these knots, it can be seen that we are each equipped for a purpose unique to ourselves and that they must be untied in order to fulfill our reason for being. No one outside of us can direct our path or insist we move in a certain direction. Yet, our cultural structures often encourage just that! Because of this, each person must become comfortable following his own inner voice, connect deeply inside of himself, and fulfill his destiny – without undue influence from others, seeking to make him what he is not.

On the road to self-realization, these knots must be untied to both reach and eventually transcend a person’s highest potential as a human being. An inner journey is required, as answers and guidance can be found only within. This journey is one of coming back to the self, to uncover and discover the true purpose of life and self-identity.