I was reading a blog on the Purpose of Life at http://celestinechua.com/blog/2008/12/how-to-find-out-if-you-are-living-your-real-purpose-now/ I was thinking what I consider as the purpose of my life.
The best way I can put into words the purpose of my life is the motto of the Ramakrishna Order as framed by Swami Vivekananda – aatmano mokshaartam jagad hitaaya ca – For one’s own liberation and good of the world. This would be the most appropriate mission statement for me.
After thinking long and hard, I found that there is nothing really that I want from this world or want to do in this world. Surely, there are a number of defects in the personality, which can be improved, and people in the world would do better with some help. But, I would not say that I feel myself or the world incomplete the way it is now.
Now, what do I understand by the words of the mission statement?
aatmano mokshartam – for one’s own liberation. By this I mean that every individual has the absolute freedom to be happy and free from all anxiety at all times in all situations. This emotional freedom is the true nature. It is because of ignorance of one’s true nature that a person does not manifest this freedom. Always remembering this natural absolute freedom and living up to it is the first half of the mission statement.
jagad hitaaya ca – for the good of the world. Each person in the world has his own goals and ambitions based on his position. Helping people to visualize their goals and work towards that is meant by doing good to them. I remember a prayer that I have heard long back:
Let the weak become strong,
Let the strong become industrious,
Let the industrious become prosperous,
Let the prosperous become charitable,
Let the charitable attain peace,
Let the peaceful help others to attain peace.
This prayer summarizes my idea of doing good to the world. From wherever a person is, I should help the person to visualize his next goal and help him work towards it.
The fundamental prerequisite for this is the strong conviction in the principle “As you sow, so shall you reap.“, in other words, “You only get what you deserve.” All problems in society is because of lack of faith in this principle. The more people are convinced about this principle, the better would be the world.
hita also indicates prosperity. Prosperity in all spheres – physical, intellectual, emotional, cultural, moral and spiritual. Physical prosperity indicates wealth and comfort. Intellectual prosperity indicates all the advancements in understanding the world around us and also well developed sciences like logic, epistemology, psychology, economic, politics, etc. Emotional prosperity indicates richness of feeling for man and God. Cultural prosperity indicates well developed arts and crafts, including music, dance, painting, sculpture, architecture, literature, drama and movies. Moral prosperity includes truthfulness, non-violence, etc. Spiritual prosperity is the same as what we discussed in the first half of the mission statement.