Friday, June 26, 2009

Beyond Mere Sense

At some point in everyone's life, the question of purpose arises. Why am I here? What is the purpose of my life? Some folks ask this question only once or a few scant times; others ask it far more frequently. But it's the kind of foundational question that dogs the human species.

Some people find their underlying purpose in parenting. The process of creating new life and preparing this life for the adventures of the future is, I've heard, a very satisfying reason to be.

Some people find their underlying purpose through their job or vocation. Providing services or products that benefit others is viewed as a satisfying activity.

Some people find their underlying purpose in the arts. Creating a picture, sculpture or song that has not previously existed provides the creator with a sense of wonder and attainment.

But what of the person who does not parent, hold a job nor is artistic? Someone like yours truly? This question of purpose sometimes tugs at me. I don't have that sense to fall back on as some many of my contemporaries do. My life is one borne of patterns and rituals that often don't include much of anyone outside of my immediate family.

The only answer that I have arrived at is that the purpose of my life -- in fact, the purpose of ANY life -- is to be. While the alternatives listed above may provide others with a sense of purpose, each cannot be carried beyond this life. In other words, being a parent or holding an important job fades away into nothingness once all is said and done.

The person who amasses a great fortune cannot take it with them to whatever the next realm may be -- if there even is a next realm. The feelings engendered by any good works or thoughts we accomplish in this life will also be left at the station.

In fact, I dare guess, the only thing we can take as a saddlebag on our continued journey is the life force itself -- even the sense of our own singular being will be stripped away. We will each be naked in the most elemental understanding of nakedness.

In the end, this question of purpose is a question that need not be asked for the answer is ever elusive. Whatever reason we can provide is but a pale facsimile to what lies beyond our meager comprehension.

We are and there's no better answer than that.

1 comment:

  1. Human being is half verb!
    The process of what we are is a story telling process. The way I play this set of circumstances helps me transform the next set.
    More to the point . .
    there is the point of conception,
    the point of completion and
    all the points in between have purpose . . or is that just a line?


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