Friday, September 18, 2009

What should we aspire to

I have come about an understanding about the absolute purpose of our being and I think it’s not ambition but an aspiration.

But if it is an aspiration what could be the absolute aspiration?

Clearly the pharaoh must have taught his people to aspire to a position in his court. His method must have been a reward for serving him. But what service did he put his society to? It was the building of the Pyramids.

Now the pyramids like all his other social projects were aggrandizement meant for him. And with the pharaoh at the top and his workers at the bottom another structure was created which was the hierarchy of society. Interestingly this entire society was put to one goal only: aggrandizement.

Aggrandizement of any kind is inherently fleeting. For example if we aggrandize money it will get used up and disappear. If we aggrandize a seat of power sooner or later it will also disappear. Hence neither aggrandizement serving ourselves nor for another can be the highest we can aspire for. In fact it’s hardly an aspiration, it is an ambition.

Thus our progress based on aggrandizement is not an aspiration because aggrandizement is fleeting and an aspiration cannot be fleeting.

In fact aggrandizement has much bigger problems.

Somebody said of a queen that she had 300 people or so to help her in the palace through her daily routine, most of which was about trivial tasks. It seemed as if her seat of power having enabled such care paradoxically made her more delicate. While on the other hand was a man who could give her consultation and sit with the pauper if he so chose to experience the other side of life. The man did not suffer a contraction on his freedom.

In fact the more power or wealth a person gathers the greater they have to spend of their freedom to keep it from disappearing.

So the question you might want to ask is if there is a different model [other than aggrandizement] that can be equally fulfilling [if not more so] and yet is not fundamentally flawed.

To understand this we must understand beauty and the source of joy.

To me the most beautiful moments I have had are when I found an answer that reconciled a severe contradiction. I also saw of this beauty and joy in an 11 year old boy who entered a national reality show talent competition [in the UK]. When the judges told him his dance performance was better than any they had witnessed so far in all the years of the show, with the entire audience cheering him I can only imagine the joy he must have felt.

Every time I achieve something through my hard work I have felt fulfilled and this fulfillment can not be taken away. On the other hand whenever I have tried to get something by somewhat unjust means the feeling of malevolence inherent in it has made me uncomfortable.

So if beauty is in our hard earned achievement and peace is in it have we not then something to aspire for?

Can the absolute aspiration not be to experience more of this fulfillment that the universe provides to us every time we struggle in it.

And wouldn't we have a house, a family, people and a career to take care of us if we simply wanted this sense of fulfillment as a result of a struggle to grow while contributing to them?

Can we not aspire to experience such a joy at ever greater levels?

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