What's the Point of Life?


Take life as you find it, but don't leave it that way

After work, the four members of the marketing team went to the pub for their weekly get-together. Unlike the past, today's subject was a heavy one. Instead of talking about sports, politics, or women, they broached the subject of LIFE. Casper started. "You know," he said, "life is nothing more than a sexually transmitted disease, and a terminal one at that."

"You're right," Xavier chimed in, "all life is, is a substance that temporarily prevents our bodies from rotting." On a more benign note, Spencer yawned and said, "Life is something you do when you can't sleep."

While pushing the frame of his eyeglasses firmly on his nose, Errol added, "Here's what I think. A person who works hard and accomplishes a great deal meets the same fate as one that doesn't, for they both die. So, what's the point of it all if it all ends in death?"

Those who, like Errol, can't help wondering what the point of it all is are focusing on the wrong thing, death. For if you focus on life, the answer immediately becomes clear. The point of it all is to live a life of exuberance, joy, excitement, and wonder. The point of life is to experience the excitement of discovery, joy of achievement, and wonder of mystery. The point is to take delight in the surprises that constantly come our way.

Simply put, the point of life is to enjoy it; that is, to live IN JOY. Since we cannot give away what we do not have, it is important that we meet our own needs first. Ultimately, however, the reason for enjoying life is to make the lives of others enjoyable. For as George Eliot (pseudonym of Mary Ann Evans Cross, 1819 ~ 1880) wrote, "What do we live for; if it is not to make life less difficult to each other?"

Adam Lindsay Gordon (1833 ~ 1870) expressed similar sentiments in verse:

"Life is mostly froth and bubble,
Two things stand like stone,
Kindness in another's trouble,
Courage in your own."

The point of it all is to make a point, to have a reason for being, to be a point of light by making a difference. In other words, the purpose of life is to live a life of purpose. Usually, we don't have to waste time trying to discover our life purpose because it is not to be found, but to be created by us.

If your personal calling is not obvious to you, be still for a moment and ask your inner wisdom for guidance. Franz Kafka (1883 ~ 1924) explains: "Life's splendor forever lies in wait about each one of us in all its fullness, but veiled from view, deep down, invisible, far off. It is there, though, not hostile, not reluctant, not deaf. If you summon it by the right word, by its right name, it will come."

What's the point of being successful and having plenty to live on if one has nothing to live for? So, pick a cause. It is belief in something greater than you and enthusiasm in pursuing it that makes life worth living.

Some complain about the minor irritants and misfortunes that come their way. But so-called 'problems' are blessings for they provide the contrast that allows us to enjoy life. For example, Canadians love to escape from their harsh winters by visiting Florida and Hawaii. They find the contrast in weather delightful. So it is with the rest of life. The reason we enjoy the good times so much is because of the bad times. So, learn how to accept the bad with the good. Or, as Roger C. Anderson put it, "Accept that some days you're the pigeon, and some days you're the statue."

Others complain that life isn't fair, but that hardly is the case. After all, rich or poor, male or female, young or old, we all receive the same allotment of 86,400 seconds a day. That's fair isn't it? If s