“Life is without meaning. You bring the meaning to it. The meaning of life is whatever you ascribe it to be. Being alive is the meaning.” -Joseph Campbell
TASK AT HAND: This week I’m thinking about the concept of “the meaning of life”. All discussions, thoughts and contemplations are essentially about the meaning of life. At the very core, discourse on any meaningful topic is by virtue an introspective survey of that which holds some meaning in our lives. Consider, “is there one meaning of life” or “is all life about meaning”?
Here is my answer: there are 3 meanings of life that should be pursued and need to be satisfied.
1) Meaningful Health. We need meaningful health. Without meaningful health, the pursuit of all other goals is hindered. There are two key components to this aspect. First, meaningful health is not perfect health. We all know many able body people with excellent physical health who have stalled in life. Contrastingly, we know individuals with serious physical limitations who live energizing and impressive lives. Second, meaningful health requires commitment to psychological and physical facets. Diet, sleep, reflection, exercise, recovery, stretching, etc. are all elements of meaningful health that require attention.
2) Meaningful Work. We require meaningful work. Purpose is the manifestation of meaningful work. We need work constructs that provide benefit to ourselves and others. This is one of the reasons why youth unemployment is a tragic economic problem. Individuals need the ability to purse interesting and valuable skills. Following, there is a real need for economic opportunity and societal activism to ensure we can contribute in a meaningful way to the growth of culture in both local and global senses.
3) Meaningful Relationships. All life is about relationships. Living is about family. Meaningful relationships, perhaps more than any other component discussed here, contribute most significantly to finding meaning in the lives we mold. Meaningful relationships – founded on trust, empathy, and selflessness – provide us with insight and opportunity for growth. Work towards meaningful health, contribute to mankind by means of meaningful work but, most importantly of all, seek out meaningful relationships to enlighten you.
MEDICINE & MACULA: Earlier this year we published a photo essay on intraocular foreign bodies in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ). Entitled, Five things to know about intraocular foreign bodies (Kunyong Xu MD MHSc & David RP Almeida MD MBA PhD), here is a quick summary:
1. Risk of intraocular foreign body is associated with mechanism of injury.
2. Ophthalmic examination should include dilation of the pupil.
3. Imaging should be conducted promptly to diagnose and localize intraocular foreign bodies.
4. Antibiotics should be prescribed early to prevent endophthalmitis.
5. Patients with an intraocular foreign body require urgent referral to an ophthalmologist.
GRATIS: “Each man must look to himself to teach him the meaning of life. It is not something discovered: it is something molded.” -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
My best to you,