Recently I have been thinking about purpose. This strange almost unreconcilable thing that haunts us throughout our lives and yet it feels in some ways we have no ready control of it. Philosophers of old have taken as many approaches to this purpose as there are trees in a forest. Each person will have this conflict in their lives, and yet what does it mean.
Purpose starts in belief, many religions and ideology will burden us with the purpose to lift our spirits and find a collective purpose beyond one’s self, perhaps into the eternal. Those don’t believe in a higher power thus must burden themselves with purpose, finding and crafting until the mind conforms to it and we feel complete. It’s hard through to reconcile purpose, because if we really were to know, would we spend our whole lives pursuing it to ensure we fulfill it or spend our lives avoiding it, hoping in some way to pursue something greater than what is hoped to achieve.
Then what happens to purpose when we die. What exactly do we leave behind us when we’re gone, a cloud of dust, an empty space, a memory. What lives on it is not part of us but what others choose to carry on their own journey. Do we impart this purpose onto the next generation? Does this transference of ourselves carry forward infinitely? Is this what memory is, a collective of generations before, attempting to pass themselves forward in the future in neural electrostatic. I don’t think we can ever know, but we still try as hope that maybe we can live on through that forever.
But giving someone a memory is not like giving someone a fruit, it’s more akin to giving someone the idea of a what fruit is. This interpretation is colored only by the personal experience of the receiver, ever-changing as it passes from hand to hand. Like a long game of telephone, how long will it be until we become distorted and become something we are not. We can’t take this with us, and we can’t pass it on where does this leave our purpose.
We all want to know so I think a great many us desire to leave a mark on this world, our own personal scratch that cries out, here I am, I existed, this is proof. I think we all see ourselves as something greater, something unique, something in wanting. Maybe it is the human curse, of living long and knowing one’s self that our mind needs to reconcile our time and the inevitable void that comes hereafter. We are then all kings of mountains of things, memories and moments that collect and carry with us in our lives. Mountains that for once we are gone return to nothing but ash and dust blowing away bit by bit to become something new.