on the Worth of Lifespring - Page 2
So, it is with
you and through you, as elements of a living, social being
that we work toward realizing the potential upon which the
vision of America was founded.
Part of our
challenge as an organization is to stay current with the demands
of our graduates, which change as the world changes. Staying
current necessitates shifting our momentum and changing directions.
A look at advertising campaigns illustrates the persuasiveness
of our commitment to personal fulfillment. Exhortations include,
"taste the good life," "you deserve a break
today," "discover the rich, smooth flavor,"
"live a cut above." We may not always manifest personal
fulfillment, but we are familiar with what it requires, what
it offers, and its limitations.
our priorities, we have observed that while fulfillment as
'happiness' or 'feeling good' remains an important element
of our journey through life, it is no longer an end in itself.
People are concerned with other dimensions of fulfillment
now. Madison Avenue now urges us to "master the possibilities,"
"be all that you can be," "discover the choices."
We have begun to see that effectiveness and accomplishment
are paramount concerns for conscious individuals.
purpose of life is not to be happy. The purpose of life is
to matter, to be productive, to have it make some difference
that you lived at all. Happiness, in the ancient, noble version,
means self-fulfillment, and is given to those who use to the
fullest whatever talents God or luck or fate bestowed on them."
Leo Rosten, Passions and Prejudices
At the core
of the quest to matter is an emphasis on the social individual's
impact in the world around him.
What do I mean
by effectiveness and accomplishment? As the climate around
us continually changes, our ability to shift our internal
'climate' is tested. Effectiveness is commonly described as
a state of doing things well, an ability to produce results.
But further, effectiveness is a versatility in the way of
being which supports accomplishment of the project at hand,
whatever that project is. This distinction carries more power
than merely learning to be better at what you do; it means
eliciting actions unprecedented for you in order to meet new
are still far from pondering the essence of action decisively
enough. We view action only as causing an effect. The actuality
of the effect is valued according to its utility. But the
essence of action is accomplishment. To accomplish means to
unfold something into the fullness of its essence, to lead
it forth into this fullness ..."
Martin Heidegger, "Letter On Humanism"