Meaning

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“This uniqueness and singleness which distinguishes each individual and gives a meaning to his existence has a bearing on creative work as much as it does on human love… A man who becomes conscious of the responsibility he bears toward a human being who affectionately waits for him, or to an unfinished work, will never be able to throw away his life. He knows the ‘why’ for his existence, and will be able to bear almost any ‘how.'” ~ Viktor Frankl, Brain Pickings

Seven Thoughts About Identity and Meaning in Life

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Seven Thoughts About Identity and Meaning in Life

The Book of Understanding was the first book I read by Osho.  I was sitting on an airplane several thousand feet above ground with no internet connection when I first opened the cover.  It was unusual for me because I don’t normally read in any kind of moving environment (I get pretty intense motion sickness) and because I normally take notes online as I read.

Feeling peculiarly drawn to this book (and despite being in a moving aircraft), I figured I would use my phone’s notepad app to take notes and would start the book anyway.  It worked out great.  That is, until I got to page 2.

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“When we’re always thinking about me, myself and I, we become quickly dissatisfied. Maybe it’s too much time spent with unproductive thoughts or a lack of connectedness, but this self-absorption can quickly bring us down.  The surest way to stop thinking about yourself is to start thinking about someone else. When you do something for someone else—out of love, compassion or connectedness—not obligation, you might find you’ve forgotten your troubles, and life actually feels fuller, more meaningful.” ~ Meghan Camp, Tiny Buddha

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“Man creates what he is, man creates himself. The meaning has to be created. You have to sing your meaning, you have to dance your meaning, you have to paint your meaning, you have to live it. Through living, it will arise; through dancing, it will start penetrating your being. Through singing, it will come to you. It is not like a rock just lying there to be found, it has to bloom in your being.” ~ Osho, The Book of Understanding

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“People wonder why there seems to be no meaning in life. Meaning does not exist a priori. There is no meaning existing in life; one has to create it. Only if you create it will you discover it. It has to be invented first. It is not lying there like a rock, it has to be created like a song. It is not a thing, it is significance that you bring through your consciousness.” ~ Osho, The Book of Understanding

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“When a poet writes a poem, meaning arises – because the poet is not alone; he has created something. When a dancer dances, meaning arises. When a mother gives birth to a child, meaning arises. Left alone, cut off from everything else, isolated like an island, you are meaningless. Joined together you are meaningful. The bigger the whole, the bigger is the meaning.” ~ Osho, The Book of Understanding