The Purpose Of Living A Good Life Essay

1905 Words 8 Pages
The Meaning and Purpose of Living a Good Life How might one answer the question “what is the meaning and purpose of living a good life?” For someone such as Edward O. Wilson, author of the book The Meaning of Human Existence, the purpose of life can be explained in Darwinian terms: survival and reproduction should be the goals of humanity. On the other hand, Huston Smith, author of the book Forgotten Truth, would describe the meaning of life in terms of religion, suggesting life is meant for God and the purpose of life is to share God with those around you. Which of these definitions is correct, you may ask? Both were on the right track, but neither is fully correct. The meaning of life is to find your gift, and the purpose of life is to …show more content…
When a person is gifted, it means they have a unique talent, ability, or potential. Every person is gifted in some way. Some may argue that some individuals are just ordinary; they don’t have a gift. This view overlooks the fact that a gift does not come naturally to everyone. I like to use the phrase “Rome wasn’t built in a day” when it comes to an individual being gifted. Some may be born with a unique talent; others will have to work and practice at it daily. It may take them years to develop a gift. Additionally, some individuals may discover their gift, but will be unable to share it. This is often the case in fields such as art. Looking back, how often have we learned of the value of one’s gift when it’s too late? Countless paintings from the works of Van Gogh to Gauguin would sell for millions today. Yet, in the era of each of these artists, their works were nearly worthless. In Van Gogh’s case, he cut his own ear off and later shot himself. Having a gift and sharing it with others is so vital to living a good life. For example, my mindset changed a few years ago, and my gift changed as a result. At one point, I was incredibly gifted at being naturally good at sports, academics, the subject did not matter. However, I was good because I was always in my comfort zone. My mindset changed to want to push myself out of my comfort zone and explore new studies and athletics. I …show more content…
Again, Smith is a firm believer in God and religion. A common practice of many religions is community service, giving to those who are less fortunate than ourselves. Isn’t sharing a gift the same thing? Each individual has a gift that very few others do. To share the gift would be giving what we have to those who do not have it. Additionally, Smith would agree that some people may have gifts that do not come naturally. They may take long periods of time to develop. When defending his belief that the individual is made of a soul, mind, and body, Smith explains, "Other persons concede that the fact we cannot conceive of something is no proof that it does not exist, but contend that if it does exist it is for all practical purposes irrelevant" (58). In other words, even though we cannot believe something, we still have no evidence it does not exist. I believe he would apply the same for people who feel they are simply ordinary; they may not believe they are gifted, but in reality, they have not made the most out of the opportunities given to them to develop their gift. Thus, Smith would agree that sharing gifts is an important component of living a good

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