A working definition for intention is: "to have in mind a purpose or plan, to direct the mind, to aim." Lacking intention, we sometimes stray without meaning or direction. One of the most powerful tools to manifest desires begins with intention. Energy and information exist everywhere in the universe and are strongly influenced by intention. When we set an intention, it triggers a transformation of energy that draws what we desire to us.
In my opinion, to have an intention is different than to set an intention. To set an intention is to act to make it happen. If you wish, look at having an intention as the blueprints to build a house. To set an intention is like pouring the concrete for the foundation and starting the building process for the entire house. To set an intention, we tell ourselves we will do something then act to do what we say we will do.
The sages of India observed thousands of years ago that our destiny is ultimately shaped by our deepest intentions and desires. The classic Vedic text known as the Upanishads declares, "You are what your deepest desire is. As your desire is, so is your intention. As your intention is, so is your will. As your will is, so is your deed. As your deed is, so is your destiny."
Setting an intention of compassion is beneficial. Believing in compassion resonates with many people of all backgrounds. Acting on compassion to respond to everyday interactions may be harder to do. The missing piece between the idea of compassion and the practice of it is intention. As Wayne Dyer said and lived so well, "Our intention creates our reality."
Lately, I have been hearing and experiencing stories that support intention as a powerful tool. You may recall my story of helping a homeless woman whom I met in a grocery store. Another time I saw a young boy with a skateboard getting ready to order tacos. I wanted to put a smile on his face and asked if I could buy his meal. His face lit up and he grinned so big. Then he told me his friend was in the restroom, and wanted to know if I could I buy his lunch too? My intention of helping guided me to the right place at the right time to offer a simple taco lunch to two boys who clearly appreciated it.
A friend started the day with cash in his pocket earmarked with a clear intention: to give it to someone who needed it. As he went throughout his day, he ended up at a Laundromat because his washer was scheduled for repair. While he was there, he noticed a woman struggling to stand. He asked if she was okay. She said that she felt dizzy and had run out of a helpful prescription. She showed him the prescription bottle, and he walked her to the pharmacy and helped her buy a refill.
In my case before I go out of the house to help someone in my neighborhood, I make a clear intention to find someone who would most benefit from this small act of compassion. Time and again, I have noticed that this allows my intention to manifest without my making much effort. On the contrary, if I am unsure or there is a lack of intention, then my compassionate opportunities are limited.
So, let us use the powerful tool of living with intention. Let us set an intention to create a reality that is beneficial to us and to others. Now, that's powerful!