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October 10, 2019 / Congau

The Purpose of Everything

All things have a purpose. Everything is made for something. Some say there is complete freedom everywhere and that anything can be used for anything, but I don’t use my phone for hammering nails, nor do I think I should, nor does this lack of freedom bother me.

Contrary to what those existentialists tell me, I can’t do just anything. I can’t drive a garbage truck. Yes, you can, they say. You are perfectly capable of it, it’s not difficult, it’s just your choice. Yes, yes, yes, I can, sure I can, but I can’t. I am not made for it just like my phone is not made for hammering nails (even if it can be used for that).

I know the objection. The inventor of the phone had a motive when inventing it. Since he was a person, he was capable of having a conscious objective with what he made. Nature, however, has no human maker, and unless you presuppose a God, no one had an original intention with it. That’s right, and what’s more, even if we put God into the scheme, we wouldn’t know His plans anyway.

Still, I would argue that we can find the purpose of a thing without looking into the head of an imagined designer. Who knows what secret intentions that phone creator may have envisioned? Maybe he was crazy and indeed wanted it used on nails. Would that change anything?

No, a purpose can be found inside a thing itself, maybe not in a literal sense, but for all practical purposes. Look at an object; what can it be used for? Look at yourself; what may be your calling?

Everyone has a nature, a personality, and some occupations are more fitting to it than others.

Find yourself; know thyself; find your purpose.

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