Meaning and purpose of life essay

In contrast to logotherapy, contemporary positive psychology, launched in 1998 by Martin Seligman, was developed during a time of peace and prosperity. Positive psychology initially focused only on the bright side of human existence; I called it positive psychology (Kashdan & Ciarrochi, 2013; Wong, 2011). Recently, I and others (Sheldon, Kashdan, & Steger, 2011; Wong, 2011) have been emphasizing that a balanced positive psychology will confront life in its totality, considering both the positive potential of negatives as well as the negative potential of positives. The current stance of positive psychology corrects the initial positive bias, but still maintains a positive focus even in negative situations.

What was really needed was a fundamental change in our attitude toward life. We had to learn ourselves and, furthermore, we had to teach the despairing men, that it did not really matter what we expected from life, but rather what life expected from us . We needed to stop asking about the meaning of life, and instead think of ourselves as those who were being questioned by life—daily and hourly. Our question must consist, not in talk and meditation, but in right action and in right conduct. Life ultimately means taking the responsibility to find the right answer to its problems and to fulfill the tasks which it constantly sets for each individual. [8]

Students’ qualms about receiving everything without effort express our intuitive understanding that working for things we desire can be part of the pleasure of obtaining them. Just as climbing the mountain may be the major part of the fun, and simply being boosted to the top by a genie would be much less rewarding, much in life might be more meaningful and rewarding because of the efforts needed to obtain it. Not only will the eventual reward be more exciting, but the activities needed to gain the reward can themselves be very rewarding. The former justice of the United States Supreme Court Benjamin Cardozo expressed this well: “In the end the great truth will have been learned: that the quest is greater than what is sought, the effort finer than the prize (or, rather, that the effort is the prize), the victory cheap and hollow were it not for the rigor of the game.” The renowned justice went beyond saying that the goal-seeking activities enhance the final reward; he claimed that these activities are in fact the prize itself!

Meaning and purpose of life essay

meaning and purpose of life essay


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