Posted 18 August 2019 by Sal
What is the Meaning of Life?
In answering a question like this I think that instead of answering with an opinion, it's best to look together and try to come to know something that is undeniably true, for all of us. Otherwise, one person’s opinion is no more or less valid than another's, and there is no reason for mine to be shared. To answer the question, ‘What is the meaning of life?’, it might be good to first find out who, or what, has that question. And, why is there even a need to ask this question, or to have an answer for it.
What causes this question to appear? Is there some dissatisfaction, uncertainty, fear, need for security or to be something? What aspect of you has those concerns? Is it not the mind asking the question?
Without referring to mind at all for a moment, giving no value to thought, and instead simply being here and now, openly knowing, recognizing that in the absence of thought, there is no past and no future, here and now only... look. What is the meaning of this moment? (Please re-read this paragraph and take a moment to look.)
Without referring to thought, is there any purpose or reason for this moment to be as it is? Is there any meaning to it? Or, is it simply as it is? Again, in no thought, simply openly knowing, here and now, what is true? Is it not that this moment simply is? Please have a look.
If you see that, then you can also see what it is that has that question, or pretends to have an answer to that question. Clearly, that can only be mind.
So what is this mind then? When you came out of the womb, was there the question, 'What is the meaning of life?'. Or, did not that question appear after years of samskaras, (mental impressions), recorded in your mind - beliefs, experiences both pleasant and traumatic, seeing suffering in the world, general feelings of dissatisfaction, feelings of incompleteness or separation, knowing about death/impermanence, etc. Or, perhaps you read somewhere that there is or there needs to be a meaning to life. Without any of these samskaras, would this question appear?
Who were you before these impressions were recorded in your mind, before your mind was filled with all of that? Were you not free of this question? Did you need an answer to it? If you look openly now, not referring to mind at all, can you see that, in fact, you are also free of that question now, exactly as you were then?
So then, if we believe that who we are is the amalgamation of these mental impressions, including sex, nationality, religion, beliefs, experiences, traumas, dissatisfactions, fears, etc., then we will feel that it is 'I' who has the question and needs an answer.
But, what if you are not that? What if who you are is free of all of that, as you were when you came out of the womb?
Take a moment to look again now, be here and now, openly knowing, no past, no future, here and now only.
What is it about you that has that question? Is it you, essentially, who is free of past and future, and in fact has none of those samskaras? Or, is it only the mind of samskaras, the mind that believes it is a self, that itself asks the question and itself wants the answer?
If you recognize that you are free, here and now, and further, see that this moment, this life, is simply as it is, and can only be as it is, then, is that question even valid, or does it become moot?
In the absence of mind, in your true essential being, is there is anyone to ask that question, or to need that answer? Or, is this moment, is life, simply as it is, here and now, complete and whole, with no reason, no purpose, no meaning, and no need for any of that?
See for yourself.
Footnote: Excellencereporter.com invited me to give my reply to the question, "What is the meaning of life?" The above text was my response. You can also read my response here: https://excellencereporter.com/2019/08/18/salvadore-poe-what-is-the-meaning-of-life/