18 Ramadan 2014: Purpose

“I want to make my mark,’ he says. But what target, I wonder, are you going to hit?” ― Cecil Castellucci

In its’ 9th year, I do believe that this topic comes up every year. Is it surprising? I believe not, because with no purpose … why are we here again? Why am I writing? Why do I continue living? This year however, I want to reflect on this question with some of what others have said.

The purpose of life is ….

  • something to live for – Dostoyevsky
  • to achieve greatest self – Maraboli
  • to contribute in some way to making things better – Kennedy
  • a life of purpose – Bryne
  • to be happy – Dalai Lama
  • not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • to help others – Dalai Lama
  • to find your purpose – Gautama Buddha
  • to be useful, to be responsible, to be compassionate. It is, above all to matter, to count, to stand for something, to have made some difference that you lived at all. – Leo Rosten

So, three observations; one is that some prescribe the attributes of a person who has a purpose in life, e.g. compassionate, useful; others prescribe purpose as a specific action, e.g. help others; and the third is so generic, one can’t help but ask more questions, e.g. a life of purpose, to find your purpose.

To prescribe what life purpose is in attributes or limited actions is narrow and makes me wonder about its completeness as it isolates some who may not have these “attributes” or “actions” who actually may have a purpose or confuse others who are trying to find their purpose as they “don’t meet these standards”.

I can’t provide you with another “quote” unfortunately and leave this to your own reflection as I do not feel I have all the knowledge necessary to do that but believing in an all-knowing god makes me accept the one that has been prescribed by our creator – Our life purpose is to “worship god” through belief, actual worship and doing good.

Image courtesy of samarttiw / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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