Series 2 - Lesson 3 - Annotation 11
What is the object of man's existence?
11. The true object of man's existence is to express all that God is in mind, body, and affairs here and now. The average person's conception of this object is that man is to be successful in material ways, to acquire prestige and position. Cognizance is not taken of the fact that a person achieving these things may still not be finding any real satisfaction for himself.
The spiritual conception of existence is that man is to fulfill himself by expressing the divine attributes (ideas) that are an inherent part of his nature—the qualities of life, love, power, intelligence, and so forth. In the process of this fulfillment, position and possessions may very well come as a by-product (they frequently do), because the true meaning of existence is found in the inner values such as security, comfort, love, life. These values must in turn bring forth manifest results.
One conception of the object of man's existence is to impress the world in a superficial way. The approach from a deeper standpoint is that man is to express his spiritual resources (divine ideas) that are his inheritance from God in ways that make a contribution to mankind as well as to the individual. In the first viewpoint, the aim of man is determined only by outer results; in the other, by inner results, the "fruit of the Spirit" (Gal. 5:22).
Jesus states as the object of His existence: "I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly" (John 10:10). We may express abundant life by coming into understanding of our true purpose in life. In expressing the true object of our existence, we become wiser, happier, more loving and positive in our approaches to life.
What is man that thou art mindful of him, and the son of man that thou dost care for him? Yet thou hast made him little less than God, and dost crown him with glory and honor. Thou hast given him dominion over the works of thy hands (Psalms 8:4-6).
Preceding Entry: How is man restored to divine harmony?
Following Entry: Give the phases of man as a threefold being, and explain the result if he fails to recognize this unity of his being.