Monday, December 19, 2005

Trying to Find Meaning

Some people feel that their purpose in life is to (re)populate the world. Others want to build families or communities. Some people try to bring laughter to others. For some, survival is enough of a goal in a world that continues to reject them. None of these are me. No, all a part of my mission, but none are what I feel makes me unique. Is there such a thing, or am I chasing something that does not exist? Is there a unique goal for me, or is it the balance or combination of elements that makes my path unique?

The one thing I am certain of is that my purpose is unique. Further than that is just detail. I thought that what I was supposed to do was to remain in academia and be a kiddush Hashem. The problem was that I was becoming enamoured of the academic life in and of itself. But was that really a problem? Or was it possibly necessary to be "of that world" in order to affect it? And if so, maybe I was just not ready for the task at hand. I respected Dr. Taylor's academics/intellect so much that I felt it would cheapen our relationship to start focusing on his emotional or spiritual life. And it wouldn't have been an intrusion, either, because he was always trying to tell me his story; it was me who refused to hear it. But then that was the compartmentalization that I was so afraid of. The one thing I was certain of all along was that it was important to remain true to myself. And that meant having a unified approach - G-d had to be a part of history. Or at least of Jewish History. If Providence brought people together, why was I reluctant to find and understanding of why? If G-d brought me to Dr. Taylor - as he once said, it wasn't necessarily for the reasons he thought. But it also wasn't necessarily for the reasons that Rabbi F. thought either. Maybe G-d wanted me to run away from University as fast as possible and Dr. Taylor, in effect, chased me out the door.

Why do I always come back to this when I try to understand myself and my purpose? Was I halted or stunted at that stage in such a way that I have to keep coming back and trying to fix it so that I can develop properly? Was I SO confused then that I have to figure it out so that I can understand myself - so that I can find the still small voice that is the real me inside? Is that necessary for my continued growth and development? Do I need to seclude myself in order to do that? My instinct would be yes - that I can't hear the small voice if there is a whole cacophony of other messages drowing it out. But maybe I have to face the conflictiong messages and learn who I am by answering their challenges truthfully. That method will also ensure that I can standup to others and be true to myself and my ambitions in the face of opposition. It is the real way to forge a character. But I'm not sure I can. Wasn't this "sabbatical" about removing myself for the sake of growth? Maybe I should take that as the first step and then I'll test my findings against other ideas. Or something. It's sort of like what Stefani, an internet acquaintance, suggested. Keep a journal; record my emotions/difficulties; look inside and answer the questions that would come... I'm not sure I have the patience for it now.

This has sort-of strayed off topic, but I also see it as a pre-action statement of purpose/methodology. I have to free myself of all preconceived notions and then move forward. And why not?

6 Comments:

At 2:32 AM, Blogger Datingmaster, Jerusalem said...

I agree with you about going with your instinct

 
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At 8:48 AM, Blogger rabbi neil fleischmann said...

I like your site and this post and the name of your blog. Rabbi David Ebner dedicated his second book of poetry "LeRuach Mamalelah." I wonder how many people get the reference? That's the one translation of unkelus that people know. But many people don't know any Unkluses.

 
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