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Finding Your Purpose In Life

“You say you got a real solution, Well, you know, We’d all love to see the plan” John Lennon / Paul Mccartney

The key to life is to find your own purpose. You may be a screwdriver that you are attempting to use as a hammer. 

crossroads photoThe American Dream is a hollow and mocking promise. It is an illusion or rather a delusion and I will prove it so. The American dream says to work hard and earn a lot of money and then you will be happy. All I have to do is to look at rich people’s lives and examine them. With their materialistic lusts, they are more miserable than the poor people. Those who have achieved financial success are not satisfied. Rather like the heroin addict, they keep on looking for more and more wealth to satisfy themselves. The poor man seeks his millions and the millionaire seeks out his billions.

Simply put materialism is a trap. If you are looking for your material possessions to make you happy you will never achieve your goal. The key to life is in spiritual satisfaction. Spiritual satisfaction comes from removing self from the picture. When one learns how to give to others one learns how to live.

An honest view of history will show that there are basically two types of people who are applauded. One category is the despots. Alexander the Great comes to mind. But what was so ‘great’ about Alexander? He went out to conquer the world, but for what purpose? It is said that when Alexander made his last conquest and found out there was nothing left to conquer that he became quite depressed. Alexander was a selfish person who destroyed the lives of millions.

On the other hand, there are heroes who instead of sacrificing others to attain their glory sacrificed themselves. Jesus Christ,  Martin Luther King, the list goes on and on. Sometimes their contribution is small and limited and at other times immense. But all share the common chord that they gave of themselves to help others.

It is the duty of mankind to use their talents to help other people. Mathew 25 states that clearly. So many people take what they have to enrich self. Their lives are a mockery and they are unhappy. Worse yet they do not understand why they are not happy. They are blind, arrogant people full of hatred. Those who help others may be materially poor but there is a richness in their lives. They have truly connected with others in a meaningful way.

In surrender, there is victory, in giving there is gain, in being the servant one becomes the master. These paradoxes are true.

The big question is how to apply this basic principle to one’s own life.

In Christianity the Bible records Jesus saying “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven.” It seems like none of these holy rollers want to be perfect for some reason, especially not the television evangelists. And if you’d like to point the finger at me and ask why I haven’t I given all I had to the poor, I can honestly reply that I tried but they threw me into a psychiatric hospital. I still haven’t fully recovered from it but I plan to make another attempt at giving away all my material goods in the future.

Jesus of course led by example. He lived his life day by day teaching and loving all that he came in contact with. It wasn’t only the miracles that made Jesus special but the little things. The Bible records Jesus as a friend to sinners. That is Jesus didn’t mind associating with those who are deemed the lowest in society but he, in fact, embraced them.

So now let me turn the spotlight to the community of the mentally ill. Anybody who has suffered from a mental illness has been humbled. In the eyes of many, we are less than human. But the truth is, that through our suffering, we have a superior position in life. We know what it is like to be in need and we can have compassion for others. Furthermore was employ that love for humanity by being kind to all and giving.

It doesn’t take a genius to understand we share a common humanity. I urge you to explore that aspect and to reach out to others you normally wouldn’t. Say hello to the stranger and hear their story. Take a chance to give some poor person a morsel of food. Smile and say hello.

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Finding Your Purpose In Life

John Kaniecki

John Kaniecki is a full-time caregiver for his wife Sylvia. He is a published writer and works with the Church of Christ. John has lived with bipolar for over thirty years and has been hospitalized nine times, three of which were committed. John has chronicled his life story in his memoirs "More Than The Madness". Also of note is John's book of poetry "Murmurings Of A Mad Man" which are poems written about being committed in Graystone Psychiatric Hospital. John believes in the power of words to change the world for the better. His website can be seen here. His books can be seen on Amazon. You can visit his personal blog "Turn A Page Or Two" here.


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APA Reference
Kaniecki, J. (2018). Finding Your Purpose In Life. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 19, 2018, from https://blogs.psychcentral.com/fragments/2018/04/finding-your-purpose-in-life/

 

Last updated: 30 Apr 2018
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 30 Apr 2018
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.