A Life of Meaning and Ambition

(Originally written: 10.6.2018)

Seeing my name on speaker tags brings me to many thoughts. The life of ambition eventually wears out. Life endlessly unfolds, and it is a process of self-discovery, an unpredictable dialogue between our potentials and our situations – potential as in our capacity for loving, learning, sensing, wondering, and aspiring for more.

We want to believe that there may be a scoring system to say we’re successful. And maybe getting to speak. But as we scramble to climb what we think is the goal, at the top, we may feel a little empty. We can build meaning into your life, through your commitments, religion, ethical order, your life’s work, to people you live. The identity is what we commit ourselves to.

Meaning is not something you stumble across, like the answer to a riddle or the prize in a treasure hunt. Meaning is something inside you. Hike into your life. You build it out of your own past, out of your affections and loyalties, out of the experience of the humankind passed on to you, out of your own understanding, talent, things you believe in, people you love, and values you are willing to sacrifice something.

You are the only one who can put them into a pattern that will be your life. Let it be a life that has meaning and dignity for you. If it does, the particular definition or balance of success and failure is of less account.All seek happiness. Not only is our desire for happiness universal, but our inability to find it as well. Instead of chasing down happiness, maybe we can start seeking brief moments of fun and meaning by savoring experiences, with gratitude, and day-to-day enjoyment of life.