What is the Meaning of Life?
To say that the meaning of life is everything indicates that life leaves nothing and no one out. “Everything” is just another way to embrace the infinite range of possibilities.
Have we come closer to answering the ultimate question, “What is the meaning of life?” Imagine for a moment that someone came up with an answer. Directly or indirectly, most of the traditional answers have crossed everyone’s path; the meaning of life usually comes down to a higher purpose, such as to glorify God, to glorify God’s creation, to love and be loved, to be true to oneself.
As with many other spiritual questions, I find it difficult to imagine how these answers could be tested. If someone holds down a good job, supports his or her family, pays taxes, and obeys the law, is that an example of glorifying God or of being true to oneself? In time of great crisis, such as war, does the meaning of life change? Perhaps it is all one can do to stay alive and be reasonably happy in a crisis.
Life refuses to be pinned down. Whatever meaning you want the universe to reflect, it provides. If you try to pin the universe down to one reflection, you pin your own life down at the same time.
Reality is like a two-way mirror that shows you yourself as well as what lies on the other side. This mutual effect is mandated because the universe doesn’t possess one set of facts. You the observer bring your version of reality into being.
Adapted from The Book of Secrets, by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 2004).