Considering the Question

Within the walls of this website are countless valuable tools and ideas to help you LIVE A JOYOUS LIFE OF MEANING AND PURPOSE.
That’s why this site is here.

And as you’re moving along, especially if you’ve just arrived, you may be thinking, “Of course I want a life of flourishing and joy. How do I start? How do I even frame my thinking?”

Well…

Hold up!

If you haven’t already, we recommend that you check out a few other pages before reading this one.

Click on the image of the pathway.

These few pages are some important highlights that will give you a valuable overview of the site and the topics covered here.

What is “THE question?”

This in itself can be hairy. As Douglas Adams parodied in his famous book/movie The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, finding the question may be even more difficult than finding the answer.

Hilarious as it may be, the way in which we frame our existential dilemmas is a subject of intrigue that has enlivened philosophy, religion, and just about every single individual in human history.

Probably the most common form of the question is this:
What is the meaning of life?

For many people around the world practicing religion, the answer to this question is a given. And, there is more:
What is A meaning IN life?

There are many other ways of asking around what we feel are these two core considerations about meaning and life.
Check out these other forms of the question:

Here’s the thing…
We can agree that people want to live life well. Across cultures, all people share a common need to live life optimally. For some, that means to live “right”. For some, “happy,” “fulfilled,” or “flourishing” defines that goal.

Here in the early 21st century, we live in a unique time of opportunity for understanding and living according to these goals. Scientific research has already been cluing us in to the secrets of happiness for decades.

And perhaps one of the most concrete answers to a life well-lived that we have found is this: Meaning

Meaning

So, let’s look at the question again, and dissect it: What is the meaning of life?
There are a couple sneaky assumptions already made by framing the question that way.

1. “THE” – this implies that there is one be-all-end-all answer to questions of meaning.

2. “OF” – this asserts meaning as a latent, omnipotent aspect of existence itself. This is the assumption commonly made by the religions of the world.

Many people in the world welcome this framing as a pertinent and immutable truth of their lives. It is an essential part of their world view.
And that is valid.
In addition to an of/the framing, there is an equally valid — and mutually compatible — framing; one that is both more obvious and more commonly overlooked: “A” and “In“.

What is meaning?
In a most simple sense, meaning is a human experience. Existentially speaking, “Meaning is the personal significance of something physical or abstract. This would include the assigning of value(s) to such significance.” -from the Wikipedia page on meaning.

So, meaning is, in it’s most relatable form, a subjective assessment of an experience. Every individual person experiences meaning differently, as A sense or sensation IN a moment of their life.

Independent of an optional “of” and “the” framing, meaning is an occurrence within the human experience. Meaning, as an experience, happens IN life. It can be assessed and measured as an amount that a person feels in their life as a whole, or even within a single experience. I.e. “I ate some cereal. That experience wasn’t very meaningful to me,” or “Standing there and witnessing a person being born was hugely meaningful thing for me to witness!”

We’re dealing with the semantic problem of needing two different words in the place of “meaning”: one for meaning ‘of’ ‘the’ reality we live in (which is openly debated), and one for ‘a’ sense we experience ‘in’ life.

How we relate to meaning in our life may fluctuate and grow. As we experience different levels of consideration, the importance of meaning itself holds more or less meaning to us. As we get past cliches and bumper stickers, we reach the most common level — level 3. And the rabbit hole goes much deeper.

Our Model

Although meaning is a different experience for each of us, there are commonalities. We share some threads, imparted to us by our evolutionary history, that span cultures, races, and time periods. They can provide us with a general idea of the human experience.

The model you will find on these pages boils down meaning as coming from 4 primary ingredients. These cornerstones are essential aspects of the human experience of meaning: Service, Expression, Love, and Discovery.

Watch the video again, or visit the explanation of our model to learn further about the framing of the subject that this site offers.

Get in the Mood

Perhaps you’re feeling like this is all a bit too much. Or maybe you’re simply feeling light-hearted about the subject at the moment.

If you’d like, you can be guided along through a gallery of videos and music designed to get you in the mood.
Here, you’ll be offered media to tickle your curiosity and inspire your perspectives.