The Meaning of Life

To me, the meaning of life consists of three major areas; enlightenment, happiness, and service. In my life I want to become as enlightened (by being open minded and understanding towards all other people) and intelligent as possible while simultaneously being a happy individual and aiding my society through various services and volunteer organizations. In order to assimilate as much information as I can, within the relatively short time span of my life, I must enlighten myself to as many different lifestyles as possible. I have taken many steps to be open and understanding; without this open mindedness I would be more prejudiced and would discount many peoples views and lifestyles as “wrong” before truly understanding them. I also am sure to keep as many avenues open, so that I can change any situation that I get myself into if need be. In my life I strive to be self satisfied and content, yet not complacent. Happiness is an essential part of any life, as it is in many others. In conjunction with making my own life enlightening as well as enjoyable, I believe that helping others is an important part of life. By committing myself to certain community organizations, I am helping individual people as well as the collective whole of the community in which I live.

In my life, I want to understand people, and enjoy their company. The only way to be close to as many people as possible is by being open to their views and opinions, even if they differ from mine. Understanding is an important aspect of becoming enlightened, and without an understanding of a situation, many mistakes would be made before a lesson could be learned. In order to be understanding with all the different people around me, I must remain open to ideals that vary greatly from my own, and I must be willing and able to accept their validity. In my life, I keep an open mind towards all opinions before forming an opinion about them, which allows be to gain a subjective understanding. Another form of openness is keeping ones options open. I have made a conscious effort to have as many options as possible in whatever situation I am in. This is especially true of my education, since I have become an unconventional student by becoming home schooled, my options have increased from the limits of public high school to a nearly endless list of possibilities. By taking this step out of an institutionalized education, I am able to take college classes while other people my age are trudging through their final year of high school. In my life, being open and understanding gives me a better view of other people, as well as helps me keep my options open.

I predict that any answer to the question “What is the meaning of life?” will include “happiness”. Being self satisfied is important in life, to be happy whether alone or with company is invaluable to a persons individuality and independence. There is little that I am unwilling to do in order to be happy. However, to be content in life does not mean to be complacent. In order to be a happy individual, I strive to be assertive in order to be content, this not only helps me be cheerful, but avoids a dangerous complacent attitude. I am unwilling to remain in an uncomfortable situation, and will not allow myself to stay upset for long periods of time because of my strong belief in happiness. An assertive attitude helps me remain self-satisfied which feeds into my happiness. With the help of friends, family, and an assertive attitude, I am able to maintain a joyful disposition.

Life should not be lived with only ones self in mind. Helping others is important because it enriches ones own life by bringing joy into other peoples lives. Also, community services are important because they aid to the betterment of the society in which we live. I am active in several community organizations including: Food Not Bombs (where we cook all vegan meals to serve on Sundays downtown) and Free Radio Asheville (a micro-powered radio station that stands up for the First Amendment Rights of all Americans). I find that I feel better about myself when I give something back to the community in which I live because I know that my actions are having direct effects upon the microcosm of our society which the town I live in portrays.

The meaning of life is to become enlightened upon as many different views and opinions as possible while remaining open, understanding, and happy. However, a life cannot be lived all for itself. Helping others, and giving to your community is an invaluable gift that you can give to the world.