Easter Ruminations: A Life’s Purpose

Can we see His whole purpose?” So asked Moses (aka a very hot Charlton Heston) in The Ten Commandments. Can you? Can you see “the whole purpose” of your life? If you can, I envy you.

 

A few years ago, out of supreme frustration and bewilderment, I asked a friend of my father’s why he [my dad] was so clueless? I recall the moment precisely: it was a nondescript parking lot outside a Chinese restaurant in Arlington, Virginia. My dad’s friend made a vulnerably funny face and replied, “Your father,” he explained, gesturing over his own head, “is missing certain antennae the rest of us have. He just doesn’t get it.” Those words explained so much; a lifetime of parental puzzlement clarified by the loving insight of a childhood friend.

 

So what antennae are you missing? I believe that true honesty requires our turning life’s most revealing questions on ourselves; the trick being whether or not we are courageous enough to withstand the answers.

 

Do you know your purpose? Are you aware of what bits you’re missing? Do you? Truly?  I ask hard questions only because I believe you can handle it—as hard as they may be. And I honor the difficulty and discomfort that accompanies same, but I also know that we are all better off knowing as much of the truth as we can handle. So, it’s up to you: how much truth can you handle? (And don’t you dare quote Jack Nicholson back to me!)

 

Are you here to learn about loneliness? To exist within an estranged marital “relationship”? To parent a bewildered and angry child? To endure multiple career humiliations or disappointments? To find purpose after material success?

All of the above?

 

“My heart is still a prisoner of the past,” says Moses in The Ten Commandments. How true is this for you? When is it time to let go of the past and proceed forward without the comforting ties from before? Often times, it is the past that provides the consolation and reassurance that we so desperately require, despite the fact that it is contrary to what we need in order to summon the courage to move forward.

 

It is this same historical reassurance that can serve as the “bondage” which limits our thinking, limits our estimation of ourselves or of others. I have numerous examples of siblings who cannot contemplate relationships with their brethren that extend beyond a fourteen year old maturity level. Everyone loses in that game. Everyone.

 

But back to “His whole purpose.” One of the things I consider so amazing about life and evolution and the Progress of Human Kind is the fact that, despite the brilliance and courage and curiosity of the human race, we cannot see the whole picture. There is more at work than we can conceive! And man, being man, as smart as he (or she) may be, cannot see it all; to believe otherwise is fallibly arrogant. I’m putting it out there, folks: I believe that there’s more to life than what we can perceive or discover. Whaddya think of them apples?

 

When pushed up against a wall, I know I am stronger than I regularly admit. I bet the same is true for you, too, and I’m willing to bet money that deep in your heart, you agree. Have faith. Have faith in yourself, if nothing else, but I’m telling you—there’s more out there…

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