Two months ago my boyfriend and I decided to become research partners. We were looking for a program or system which could help us find the meaning of life. With an endless flow of books, articles and others treatises on this topic we found an overwhelming amount of information to wade through. Here are the most memorable examples:
- One of the most popular books about the meaning of life we found: The Art of Work: A Proven Path to Discovering What You Were Meant to Do Paperback – March 24, 2015 by Jeff Goins
Video about the book and collection of stories.
- Very inspiring monologue from one of the pastors of a Protestant Church Rick Warren (2006) http://www.ted.com/talks/rick_warren_on_a_life_of_purpose
He wrote a worldwide best-seller The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For?. Everything I needed to know about this book was in its review: the bestselling hardback non-fiction book in history, and is the second most-translated book in the world, after the Bible.
- Neurologist and psychiatrist Viktor Frankl pioneered an approach to psychotherapy that focuses on the human search for meaning. His video provided four minutes pure pleasure, I would call it recommended viewing! http://www.ted.com/talks/viktor_frankl_youth_in_search_of_meaning
My personal favorite quote from him: “If you treat an individual as he is, he will remain how he is. But if you treat him as if he were what he ought to be and could be, he will become what he ought to be and could be.” ― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.
- This interesting lecture with five very simple questions, might help you to determine the meaning of life. How to know your life purpose in 5 minutes
- 30 days, 30 minutes per day in order to find the meaning of life. http://www.themeaningoflife.tv/ 10 minutes of meditation, 20 minutes of video and questions of reflection which will take around 10 minutes. Read more about the structure here: http://www.themeaningoflife.tv/content/
It would be impossible to understand all the truth and find this list universally effective. It will fit differently for different people.
I realized how helpless and futile our research was when I decided to find out, how many books about the meaning of life are out there. When Amazon found 206 797 books connected to the topic «life purpose», it crushed me in a desperate wave. How could it be possible to find the truth among all this variety of philosophical debates and baptist’s best-sellers? I don’t even want to talk about countless websites, articles, apps and other instruments for searching the meaning of life. We took a break and decided to set aside our research before it led us into blind alleys or worse — into a some kind of sect. This allowed us to find the true intellectual path we wanted to go down.
After reading the article «Psychologist about life mission and laziness» (sorry, it is in Russian) I understood and accepted the point of view of the Psychologist Pavel Zigmantovich: «We were told that pleasure — is consumption. That’s why we have this problem with satiety, because we can’t consume extremely — at some point you’ve tried everything, even crazy things. But if we were told that creation is cool and will provide contentment, then many things could be different. Propaganda of consuming is very destructive in a long term perspective.»
That’s it! Think about consumption as a perspective for development. However, this does not correlate with the search for the meaning of life. The Philosopher’s Stone remained in a mine of non-existence…
«What are we gonna do about our research, Alex?!» — I panicked. The answer was hiding from me for a long time. I started to believe that all we were doing was for nothing and it would be for the best to just switch to something else… At that moment Alex told me «Let it go!». And as soon as I let the situation go, everything solved itself.
Photo made by Vladimir Piskunov
It reminded me of one incident, when I was just a beginner on a surfboard and I decided to take the first wave from a set and it washed me badly. Straight after this wave another six were ready to wash over my poor body. The first stream of water pulled down unexpectedly. I tried to resist, I was aspiring to get to the surface but nothing helped. Next waves crushed me with the short break of a split second and my energy almost left me. I tried at least to put out my head above the water in order to inhale and to keep fighting. When either the fourth or the fifth wave once again nailed me down to the bottom I learned how to just let go. As soon as I released my body and my thoughts and let the wave shake me and push me into the foam… Everything was over. Once again the water was below my chin, I could see the coast, my head was above my buttocks and legs could feel the earth under them.
The first research attempt hit me just as the first wave had, I couldn’t breathe until I let go and went with the flow. After a couple of days of observation I got a full picture in my head and once again was sharing my doubts with Alex. I realized what we were attempting to discover. Check this out!
You can’t learn it at school and professors don’t teach you that at universities, but for one’s life purpose it is priceless knowledge! Do you already know what I am talking about? A final confirmation I found in this synopsis from the lecture of Tatiana Chernigovskaya (Russian biologist, linguist, semiotician and a psychologist with expertise in neuroscience and psycholinguistics, as well as theory of mind) “How to teach your brain to learn” (Sorry again, it’s in Russian too): “Perhaps, at schools and universities we should teach not a set of facts, but how one gathers the right information. Important questions: How to learn to learn? How to learn to control your attention and memory? How to learn to classify and organize information in the right way?”
So we want to create an online educational model, which will teach a person how to learn. Plus, we want to help people become aware of the excessiveness of our consumer society model and begin to practice creation in their life.
In the next article I will tell you how we came up with this idea and try to show the first structure of the educational model, which we are preparing now. And before that, if you have found something similar to our model at schools, courses, lectures, books, articles or anything else, — please, share it with us.
Our motto: Never stop and become better and better every day!
Cover photo: Depositphotos.com/@gustavofrazao