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01/01/2014 06:58 am ET | Updated Jan 23, 2014

Mark Nepo On The Real Meaning Of Sacrifice (VIDEO)

Author and poet Mark Nepo says that we're like the cliffs worn down by the sea -- that's how our soul's beauty is revealed. The growth and enlightenment associated with this beauty can be achieved in many different ways, but according to Nepo, only two of these ways are completely universal.

"Two [ways] that have always been there [are] that we are broken open or we willfully shed," he tells Oprah during his appearance on "Super Soul Sunday."

"We willfully shed," repeats Oprah. "Explain that, Mr. Poet-Man."

"We all have to put down what doesn't work after a while," Nepo explains. "That comes from... the original definition of 'sacrifice.'"

Though the word "sacrifice" may make people think of someone who gives up something to help others, Nepo says that the original definition of the word has a more introspective meaning. "The original definition of sacrifice moves more inwardly," he says. "It means 'to give up what no longer works.'"

When you make this type of sacrifice and give up what no longer works for you, Nepo says you become closer to what really matters in life. Also in the video, Oprah identifies an important question that everyone should ask themselves before undertaking this exercise.

"Super Soul Sunday" airs Sundays at 11 a.m. ET on OWN.

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