What is the purpose of my life?
For a while I have been bugged by this question “What is the purpose of my life?” Everyone at some point of time must have asked themselves questions on those lines – “Why am I here?”, “What is the meaning of my life?”, “Why doesn’t someone come here and tell me, what my purpose is?”
For about a week I have been thinking a lot about this, and one fine Sunday morning I woke and saw myself in the mirror. I looked the same as I looked a week back, in fact much dull. I looked around and my room was pretty much the same as it was on last Saturday, only shabbier. Then I looked at the calendar and something immediately struck me like light. I haven’t gained anything, but I certainly lost something- one complete week of my life. That’s when I realized how stupid I was and what a silly question I was asking myself. Instead of asking myself and thinking so much about “What is the purpose of my life?”, I should have asked a much simpler question “What do I do in this week, to make my life a little better?”. I could have gone and seen the beautiful waterfalls. I could have improved my game skills. I could have exercised and got into shape. I could have spent a whole day standing on the road and saying ‘hi’ to strangers. I could have called up my family and spoke to them for hours. Even better I could have worked at a petrol station and earned more money. Instead I spent hours sitting in a cozy dark room, listening to tragedy music. What a complete loser was I. The calendar hanging in my room, really did a great deal of good to me, it showed me what I lost.
Grapes hanging high are sour. This adage is certainly worth the direction now. Let us think for a while, does anyone really know why he or she is here. I doubt so. No one knows the answer to the question “What is the purpose of one’s life?” In fact people keep blaming God that he hasn’t showed you the purpose of your life. What if tomorrow, God appeared to you and said “My Son, Your purpose in life is to become the President of America”. What good does that direction do to you? Does that help you? You might even laugh and tell God “Lite teeskuo prabhu”.
Some people put so much time and energy into this thought into finding answers, that anything else seems completely worthless until and unless they find the solution to this supposedly ‘holy question’. Vemana shatakam may have born out of it, but not everyone is a Vemana, and may be I don’t need the Vemana shatakam at all.
Mahatma Gandhi did not know when he was born that he would break the shackles of slavery and bless a whole nation with freedom and be hailed as the ‘Father of the Nation’ by a billion. Nor did he lock himself up in a room thinking and analyzing constantly to answer the question “What is my purpose in this world?” He just rose to the occasion and wanted to dedicate his full to the extent possible. He went by a simple principle “How can I see happiness in the faces of the people around me?” It so happened, that it was not 10 people around him, but a whole Nation.
So, can we live by one simple principle? Every single day, ask ourselves this simple question “How can I make myself happy and within my capacity and the hour of need, can I rise to the occasion and do the needful to see happiness in the faces of people around me?”
The hard part comes here - What makes people happy? A beggar feels happy when a person gives him money. A saint is happy when God appears before him. What can we do about it? Ok. Here comes ‘capacity’. Can you give the beggar a rupee and still feel at the end of the day that you have not lost a fortune? Can God (if he existed) appear before the saint for a minute, without repenting at the end of the day that in that minute he could have saved an entire town from a flood or a natural calamity? Then do it.
Can you visit your ailing grandmother and make her happy? Can you wish a kid on his birthday? Can you visit an old and lonely couple and give them a day of happiness? Can you speak with your parents and make them happy? Can you joke on yourself to bring laughs into a boring get-together? Can you smile at a stranger to see his lips blossom?
Just keep in mind that you are a small link in this enormous network of social living. Nevertheless you are a link and your mere existence is crucial to the network being in tact and any further effort only makes it better.