Meaning is determined by the beliefs we hold.
What should we believe?
What beliefs are worth investing in?
What beliefs should we avoid?
What we are all trying to do is satisfy our biological needs today and in the future, for ourselves and family and more widely for society.
Why society, because if society is not functioning well, chaos and anarchy could be just around the corner and that’s not good for us or our family’s futures.
You can either ignore problems society has or do your part to make society better. You don’t have to make a huge, life-changing contribution, but just be nice to others rather than nasty.
Be a positive influence to those around you rather than a negative influence.
Link your behaviour – including what you say and do – with what kind of world you want for yourself and family in the future.
Don’t get suckered into ideologies–which only tell part of the full story of the world. The full story comprises the good and bad of…
• The Knower–we are the “knowers”. A mix of good and bad, persona and shadow.
• The known–“society/culture” . The protector against chaos on the one hand and tyrannical on the other.
• The unknown– “nature”. The life giver and life taker.
All these elements make up the whole of life experience.
What you do really matters! You have a greater impact on others than you might think. You can use your power for good or bad.
If you take a pathological path – you will have taken away from the world, rather than contributed to making it a better place.
What positive impact have you had on others?
If you try to spread love rather than hate, you make a huge difference to your life and that of other people. If others love you, then you must have positively impacted their life in some sense. This is a big deal. Just a smile or a kind word can make a vast difference to the receiver. If you help an elderly neighbour, you make a huge difference to them.
You don’t have to make a big difference to a lot of people; just one other person is enough. If you’re nice to one other person, that may put them in a better mood and they may be nicer to others as a result, and so positivity can spread very quickly.
The opposite is also true; your boss shouts at you, you shout at your kids, they kick the cat. You have surely experienced how negativity can impact your own life; when one person makes a nasty comment to you, it can really spoil your day. Negativity can really linger.
Don’t be king of the lost boys or queen of the lost girls. If you interact with other people who are not helping themselves, others and society, don’t aid and abet them. Don’t use other people as an excuse not to be as good as you can be.
Try to reach across the divide with people who are not like you, who have different opinions or affiliations, even people you see as your enemies. Don’t fall into divisive in-groups and out-groups. Division is bad in all situations. Sure it’s easier to get on with those with similar ideas, it’s much harder to do so with those of differing opinions, but we must try.
We humans are more similar than we are different. We have much more in common than we think we do. All people generally have a desire for pleasure and a need to avoid pain and suffering, but we differ in our strategies to achieve those goals.
We need to understand and empathise with other people who have different ways of thinking. Find some way of connecting with those people. If they are so ingrained with hate for your position, then don’t throw hate back at them, that’s just an Ego defence response. It will not work, hate only creates more hate, only love can defeat hate. Your responsibility is to shine light into the darkness.
Take on this responsibility where you currently are. Don’t wait for a future time, state, circumstance or situation. Do it with your next social interaction. Be a light in someone else’s life. You’re walking down the street – smile at people who you walk past you from the opposite direction, or say a friendly “hello”.
Don’t get annoyed with them, if they don’t reciprocate. You’re not doing it for what you get back from others, you’re doing it be a positive influence on your environment. This may seem strange at first, but eventually it will become habit.
Have a positive energy, have a kind word to say to others. If you’ve nothing nice to say, say nothing, because that’s better than saying something nasty.
Do something nice for others. If you don’t do something nice, then certainty don’t do something bad.
Go out of your way to help others. If you can’t, then avoid doing anything to harm or hurt others. Don’t criticise others, don’t belittle others, and don’t be rude to others. Try to judge others less, you don’t know their circumstances.
If you’re thinking this is too difficult, or lame, I’d suggest taking a closer look at the way you’re orientating yourself in the experience of life. We all have a shadowy side, often filled with negativity and aggression, even hatred and fury. We need to find a way of virtuously channelling that aggression for good rather than bad. It’s important to integrate the shadow aspect of personality into a healthy life that makes the world better for us, our loved ones and the rest of society today and into the future.
Now that’s something we can all commit to straight away, that’s worth doing to make life meaningful.