Sunday, March 09, 2008

The Meaning of Life

I am reading a book by Terry Eagleton, The Meaning of Life, that poses a lot of questions about that very issue. What is the meaning of life? Is it meaningful to even discuss this question? The book raises these and other questions and seems to alternate between challenging issues that encourage thoughtful responses, and a somewhat prosaic litany of differing responses to the questions, some of which do not deserve much thought or attention. What makes the book interesting and worth persevering are the former, the issues that challenge personal beliefs and encourage thoughtful meditation on the meaning of meaning, if not life itself. I was reminded of a somewhat tongue in cheek but lyrical meditation on the issue of meaning I wrote some years ago.

The Source

...alone with an inscrutable society.
- Virginia Woolf

Where does one look for the meaning of being
Apart from the life of the crowd?
The crowd with its shuffle
And bustle and people, whose trivial talking
Explains not one iota of what you need to know.

How does one know what is really important,
When cascading cacophonies of high-minded
Poseurs prevent you from sifting through cant
And through rhetoric; thus leaving you no way to grow?

Will growing and knowing enable the process
Of discovering all that is hidden beneath each and every
Accident comprising our world?
For there is the source, the location of meaning,
And with it the being that makes this world go.

Literary Poems, January 1992

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