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What Does It All Mean?
By Art Ramsay, PhD

 Years ago, when I first started working for the United States government, as an engineer, a friend I had met there asked this question: "What does it all mean?" It almost seemed a rhetorical question at the time, rather than one for deep reflection. I hadn't stepped onto my 'spiritual path' as yet, and the only things that I dove into deeply were engineering concepts and technical issues.

 Thirty years later, I began to look at that question in a different way, because what he was asking was 'what does life mean?' Why are we here? What is our purpose? These questions have been asked and discussed for perhaps thousands of years. Humankind needs a reason for being here doing what it is doing. I don't claim to have the answer, I don't think many people would, but I have gotten inklings of it over time.

 The answer I keep getting is that one reason we are here is to learn the answers to those questions. Within each of us lies our own answers, and yet, those answers are also universal. There is a calling, a longing within us that pulls us into deep contemplation and sell-discovery. Most seem to ignore it, but it will not go away. We can push it down into the recesses of our minds, or dismiss it as mind psycho babble, but it comes back to haunt us relentlessly.

 Why? Because the 'something' asking those questions is you; the deeper you, who you truly are. I know some of you reading this are probably saying "oh yeah? If I am so spiritual, why do I have such a crappy job, relationships, poor health, bust my butt for nothing, blah, blah, blah." The reason is because you have ignored that deep longing, and just gotten on with your crappy life as if it were all that there is for you. My solution for you? Wake up!

 Wake up. Haven't all the philosophers told us that in many ways for eons? Socrates said 'know thyself', Jesus and Buddha said that the kingdom of heaven, God is within us, and so on. It isn't a debatable point; you either believe it or not. Going on the premise that this line of reasoning is true, then how do we access that Self within us? Or more to the point: how does that Self within us, get our attention?

 So the meaning of life is not so mysterious after all, that is if you know where to look. The point is that 'where to look', as stated above, is within ourselves. I cannot tell you the meaning of your life any more than you can tell me the meaning of mine. From a general sense we can say that the meaning of life is to learn, and that the learning can take on many facets depending on who we are.

 The cycle of our lives is interesting. As I understand it, as a spiritual being, I decide to do the 'earth thing' and look around for candidate parents. The mother conceives either before or after my selection of her, and at some point, and this is debatable as to when, I become the consciousness of the fetus. As a newborn I am now a spiritual being with a body. But over time, I forget about the spiritual being part and settle in to becoming a full-fledged human being. I heard a story about that awhile back that goes something like this: a three-year old child crept into his newly born baby sister's room. The parents cracked the door a little to listen. What he said was "Tell me about God, I am starting to forget."

 As I grow into adulthood I learn many things from many people that shape my human life. But all the while there is that subtle knowing that there is more than what appears on the surface of life. Then one day I submit to the gnawing desire just beneath my awareness and begin meditating, reading, asking questions. After months, or maybe years, I finally understand that human experience is to learn through doing, something I could not do in the spiritual realm.

 At this point, we have come full circle from a spiritual being learning how to use its new human body, to an aware human understanding that it is a spiritual being using this body to learn more about itself and its connection with all of life.

 But what if you don't 'wake up'? As I write this, most of the people on this planet have not 'awakened', and many will not in this lifetime. Does all this sound like woo woo gibberish? Sure it does on the surface of modern human existence. To the 'normal' mainstream person working 9 to 5, supporting a family, and trying to 'get ahead', there is nothing else; you are born, you grow up, get married, raise a family, grow old and die, end of story.

 Does anyone reading this really believe that? Can there only be born, live, die, and nothing else? Wow, I sure hope not. Otherwise "what does it all mean?" is a meaningless question, because if that is all there is to life, why would anyone even ask that question?

 Think about it. If the born, live, die paradigm was all there is why would all of the philosophers, spiritual masters, and other great people of the past tell us otherwise? Were they ill-informed? To even consider that idea is insane. We humans are the ones that have been mislead for thousands of years. Why? Because what is called the reptilian mind has dominated human life. It is the 'fight or flight' way of living, always looking over your shoulder for an enemy.

 Another aspect is the masculine energy that has dominated this planet for eons, always seeking power and domination. As I write this we are being controlled by governments, the oil industry, the medical industry, the banking industry, the food industry, and the pharmaceutical industry. Did I leave anyone out? If you don't believe what I have written above, go read some history books and look around you now. What do you see?

 What does all this have to do with you? I would like to call it a 'wake up' call. I am only a massager putting ideas out there for you to consider. I believe the content of this article has a lot for you to consider, because to dismiss it outright is to have a closed mind. No one can learn anything with a closed mind, and a truly closed mind would never have asked "What does it all mean?"

 

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