In New Age circles, we often hear statements like:
“Everything has a purpose.”
“Wherever you are is perfect.”
“It’s all good.”
“If that happened, there must have been a reason.”
These slogans can be misleading, even untrue. They may comfort us in the moment, but they are not good guides to a happy or fulfilled life. More often, they are simply justifications meant to make us feel better when we have missed the mark, or when bad things randomly happen.
In fact, an event is either the result of a chaotic universe (even when somebody ascribes a purpose to it, after the fact), or the result of somebody’s intention. Remember that purpose requires a consciousness to declare it. That somebody may or may not be you, and the event may or may not have anything to do with your purpose or goals. Just because it happened, doesn’t mean it is in your best interest or aligned with your purpose. It may be happening at the will of someone with a stronger will to impose their own purpose.
Saying that “if that happened, there must have been a reason” is abdicating responsibility. It is taking the role of the victim who’s life is controlled by whatever prevailing energy, act, or rule is set in motion. That may sound a little harsh, but living from this point of view can save you a lot of trouble, energy, and heartbreak.
Does the lightening bolt in the picture have a purpose, a reason? The event was a discharge of pent up energy of the friction between the protons and the electrons in a cloud. There was a reason because there was a build of that energy that needed to be released. Was there a specific purpose for it to release then and there? Doubtful. Even if it struck a boat or a person. It is a random act or chain of events of nature. A conclusion to a set of circumstances.
Was slavery supposed to happen? Did it happen for a reason? Well, it could be argued that yes, it happened for the reason that someone’s purpose of enslavement was simply more powerful or cunning than another person’s purpose of living a free and natural life.
Take war. It happens for a purpose, but the purpose is a denial of reason, and it is usually not at the benefit of the purpose of those who suffer the worst of war. The purpose supports greed, hate, prejudice, control, fear, and power, and occurs because the parties are unable to come to a logical and fair solution as reasoning human beings living in a reality based world.
You can later use an event and turn it in your favor. It is a good way to survive the world. Turn lemons into lemonade or cracked eggs into omelets. But please don’t be fooled into mistaking what is happening. You are too smart for that. You are on a path of awakening, not superstition or numbing bromides.
If it were true that “wherever you are is perfect,” it wouldn’t matter what purpose you chose or what path you walked. One would be just as good as another. That doesn’t get you out of bed in the morning. It doesn’t give you any inspiration to grow, make course corrections, or learn lessons.
Besides, we know that it does matter what we do with our lives—very much. Most people have experienced that horrible feeling of purposelessness, of drifting and meaninglessness. It is not how we are meant to live. If wherever you are in life is perfect, why would anybody want to grow or learn? Why would people go to therapy or counseling? Why would so many people feel that they were wandering aimlessly, and sometimes painfully, through life without any clear direction?
If where you are right now is the perfect place, then it is the perfect place for all those around you. Look around. Could you say as a certainty, that everyone you see on the street, every one in your family, all of your friends, are exactly where they are supposed to be in life? Could none of them have done anything different to be in a better place—more education, less addiction, more compassion, less self-defeating choices?
Life is more than showing up and putting one foot after the other, moving through life on automatic without joy or a sense of accomplishment. As Helen Keller said, “Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing.”
Instead of looking around and declaring every event as a having a purpose somehow divinely delivered to you, why not spend your time contemplating the types of beneficial events that you can manifest by directing your energy toward your purpose?