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"Individual life is the fundamental unit of the life of the cosmos. If the purpose of individual life is served, automatically and simultaneously the purpose of cosmic life is served to the same degree."



The purpose of life
by Enlightenment, The Transcendental Meditation Magazine
November 2013

Excerpt from The Science of Being and Art of Living
by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi:

Expansion of happiness is the purpose of life, and evolution is the process by which is fulfilled. Life begins in a natural way; it evolves, and happiness expands. The expansion of happiness carries with it the growth of intelligence, power, creativity, and everything that may be said to be of significance in life.

he purpose of creation is the expansion of happiness, and this purpose is fulfilled through the process of cosmic evolution. The significance and purpose of individual life is the same as that of cosmic life. The difference is one of scale.

Individual life is the fundamental unit of the life of the cosmos. If the purpose of individual life is served, automatically and simultaneously the purpose of cosmic life is served to the same degree.

If a man has fulfilled the purpose of his life, he has done his best to help the cosmic purpose, for the evolution of the cosmos is basically served by the evolution of the individual life.

If a man is unhappy, he has missed the very essence of life. If his intelligence, power, creativity, peace, and happiness are not constantly developing, he has lost his direction. Life is not meant to be lived in dullness, idleness, and suffering; these do not belong to the essential nature of life.

Life is dynamic, not static. It is energetic, progressing, evolving and developing through activity and multiplying itself.

Activity maintains the stream of evolution, and it is the nervous system of the individual which is the vehicle for this activity. In species lower than man, the nervous system is not so fully evolved, so that activity leading to evolution is on a far smaller scale. As the nervous system evolves, the rate of evolution increases.

Man’s nervous system, being complete, is the most highly evolved. Therefore his possibility of evolution is unlimited in this life.

When a child is born, his means of expression are limited and his powers undeveloped, but as he grows up and engages in the field of activity there is no limit to the development of his powers, his strength, intelligence, and creativity, nor to the degree of happiness which he can experience and radiate.

The purpose of this book is to reveal that since man’s nervous system is so developed he can, through right activity, make use of his unlimited potential.

A man of limited mind, busy in the world, is unable to appreciate the purpose of life. His mind is occupied with small things, and he can only create in a limited way. The conscious mind of an ordinary man is so limited that he is not even able to enjoy life. Many aspects of his life caused him to suffer, but his suffering is due only to his not using his full potential.

By not using his full potential, man is unable to fulfill the purpose of his life. He suffers in many ways because he is not using the full conscious capacity of his mind or the great energy he carries within himself. He is not experiencing and expressing in his life the abundance of absolute bliss that he naturally possesses, the absolute field of creativity and power that lies within himself. He is like a millionaire who has forgotten his wealth and position and goes begging in the street.

All suffering is due to ignorance of a way to unfold the divine glory, which is present within oneself.

In our modern scientific age material comforts are certainly increasing, yet the individual life seems to grow more tense. This is only because individuals do not know the way to improve their ability and efficiency through contact with the greater energy and intelligence which every man has within himself. It is only necessary to contact consciously that field of inner life to benefit from it.

Man today is blind to the purpose of life, unable to see that he is born to enjoy, create and live a life useful to himself and others. He plunges into whatever activity lies ahead, working hard to the best of his ability. This is commendable, but when activity increases, a man often finds himself unable to cope with the resulting pressure and responsibility. Unless his efficiency increases proportionally, tension and strain develop.

As a man engages in greater activity he should be able to produce more energy and greater intelligence within himself to deal with this increased activity. When he does not know how to do this he misses the entire purpose of life.

Life in freedom is intended for the human race. If a man is not able to live in freedom in the very purpose of life is not fulfilled. Man is born to live a perfect life, encompassing the values of the transcendental Absolute—unlimited energy, intelligence, power, peace and bliss—together with the unlimited values of the world of multiplicity in relative existence.


© Copyright 2013 Maharishi Foundation USA, a non-profit educational organization.


"The potential of every student is infinite. The time of student life should serve to unfold that infinite potential so that every individual becomes a vibrant centre of Total Knowledge."—Maharishi

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