The issue of what we are born to do has become one of the most puzzling challenges confronting mankind today, especially millennials. Many have turned to philosophy and psychology to make sense of life generally and to discover the meaning of their own lives personally. Although, this endeavour has elevated the thinking of many seekers, due to the discoveries and teachings of many great minds, most remain lost in the rhetoric of such profound ideas.
While meaning is advocated by deep thinking philosophers and well-behaved psychologist, the actual experience of meaning is spiritual; and you will find out that meaning that will pass the test of time does not come merely by good, credible and empirical information but through a process of heart transformation.
Information versus Transformation
“…the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.” 2 Corinthians 3:6
Information, even good information, only usually engages the mind (the reasoning faculty) but the place for real change is the heart (the meaning faculty). The mind is the place of knowledge and we can know without using what we know. This precedence has already been set by Adam’s eating of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. And since then, the default setting of the mind is to have information without necessarily applying it, especially when it has to do with deciding between right and wrong.
It takes much more than merely knowing what is right in a situation; it takes a regeneration to have the heart to actually choose the right cause even when it is not convenient.
Regeneration is a change of the life principle in the heart that Adam (being the head of the human race) instituted into the stream of human consciousness, so that there can be a restoration to God’s original intention. This is replaced with a new life principle from the Godman, Jesus Christ, who is the head of the redeemed race.
“Eschatologically and spiritually speaking, regeneration is a restoration of things to their original, pristine conditions.”
The capacity to know truth is not lacking in human nature but the capacity to love and obey what is true is in short supply. If we must experience meaning/purpose, we must embrace TRUTH. Since meaning is a definite experience, Truth must never be compromised.
“This truth is the basis for real transformation from what you are now to what you ought to be or what you were designed/created/made to be.”
Therefore, truth is the first component of meaning. This may be a bitter pill to swallow for some. Truth is not relative. If truth, the very foundation of meaning, is relative; how then can we ever know for certain what we know?
In science, there are measurements that helps the scientist to establish reality or at least a version of reality. But the point is, reality was not arrived at arbitrarily; it was based on a standard of measurement. Also, meaning cannot be established arbitrarily.
The search for meaning must be based on what is fixed, absolute and immutable or else meaning will never be certain. Such a pseudo experience will keep changing with the fads and fashions/emphasis of the times. The first progress in your search for meaning is your appreciation for Truth (not as relative, but as absolute).
“Your word is forever, LORD; it is firmly established in heaven.” Psalm 119:89
“…the word of the Lord lasts forever.” 1 Peter 1:25 ISV
The discovery of meaning is not a philosophical journey; it is, for all intents and purposes, a spiritual journey.
Note: Unless otherwise stated, all scripture quotations are from the King James Version.
Picture Credit: Ms O Reilly education