A Beautiful Purpose
How many of us give our purpose in life a clear definition? Like the majority, we might just drift along, not really giving purpose any real thought at all. What kind of answers do we find when we ask ourselves: Do I have a purpose in life and is this something that could be easily described as beautiful?
The vast majority of us do have a tendency to follow some simple rules when it comes to purpose. At its base level, we might only want to avoid pain, and then seek out pleasure. Seeking happiness, and not thinking about too much else, means we will of course follow the majority in respect of many things. We’ll follow an established pattern that society dictates as normal or average. We’ll lead a life that pursues societies model for happiness.
Surly this pursuit is all fair and reasonable? Of course it is, however we must remember, the established model society has for happiness, doesn’t work for all. In fact we could say the model’s failing. The evidence – for this admittedly slightly negative outlook – is all around us. Look at the ever increasing amount of violence in our societies. Look at the rise in mental illness. Let’s look at suicide rates, self-harm, depression, drug use et cetera; but then again, let’s not hey?
“And so giving ourselves clear purpose must go some way to improving our lot in life. Aimlessly drifting, following the crowd, is for the majority”
In adolescence – during that time when we’re entering the world for real – our motivations will naturally be very self-centered. As time goes on, we become less so, and more concerned for the better good of those around us. This is especially prevalent once our thoughts move toward settling down to start a family. With this development in mind, what is suggested by many wise teachings, is that we begin – the more altruistic kind of thinking that age can bring – at a much earlier stage in life. And not just for those in our immediate vicinity.
“Having purpose in life, that involves improving the wellbeing of everyone, is beautiful on several levels”
It stands to reason, that moving our minds into a more altruistic way of thinking, is beneficial for others. What is often neglected, or overlooked by the young, is that the benefits to altruism always become a two way arrangement. We only have something once we’ve given it away.
With the alternative to altruism being self-centered drivings, the end result, can often be loneliness. We humans must never forget we’re a social animal at heart. Losing sight of the need to grow out of childish self-centeredness, could well be at the root, to many of our current problems.
It often takes time to fully realise the benefits to clearly defining our purpose. We can ask ourselves the question: What is my purpose for today? Or we can start each day giving ourselves the purpose of creating positive ripples. We do this by seeking to influence everyone we meet in a positive way. Think of how setting good example, teaches love of the self, and how infectious this can be. How would you set out to do this today?