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Is a persons reality, meaning, and purpose determined by their choice of study/job?

We each end up choosing, either randomly or due to interest a discipline to pursue in college, or generally in life. For example, a person who chooses medicine spend most of their life in a hospital instead of traveling and seeing the world. There's always that exception of people switching careers suddenly due to hating what they do. But, in reality, most people tend to settle with what they have and not peruse any other kind of mental stimulation or excitement or desire to truly learn out of interest and self-betterment.

Topics: Jobs life meaning
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    Mar 18 2013: I don't think this is true- that people do not pursue" other mental stimulation or a desire to learn out of interest and self-betterment." I think people generally love to learn and improve themselves and that the internet and other media have made it very easy to become familiar with all sorts of topics that interest people. Beyond this, do-it-yourself activities have returned to popularity, and engagement with others in social settings involves a variety of kinds of learning that people find gratifying.

    In terms of your title question, some people find a large part of the meaning of their lives in their jobs, while others find their meaning and purpose first and foremost in family or community, however defined.
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    Gail . 50+

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    Mar 18 2013: My reality, meaning, and purpose determine what I do in life. Not the other way around.
  • Mar 23 2013: My job supports my reality and meaning and that is what keeps me highly engaged with it. I am grateful to have the opportunity to earn an income In a way that is meaningful to me. It is also true that my job has informed my reality over the years and as Bob says, I feel my reality, meaning and purpose would be different had a I chosen a different career or line of study. While I am sure that there is an element of randomness to these " choices" I also feel that active decisions pull or push us in directions that are consistent with our own values if we let them and have the opportunity to do so..
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    Mar 22 2013: My meaning, reality, and purpose means i am happy. I have worked at a higher paying job where I was friggin miserable! i am 43 years old. I never was after the success money could buy. I have always been a free spirit, So to me... ones success is not measured by how much money you make, or how 'intelligent' you are. Intelligence is subjective anyhow. You may know know more Math than me, but I can spell better than you... etc... So it just depends.

    As long as I am true to who I am, and I do not let anyone dictate me or my destiny... I will be alright!
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    Mar 21 2013: By choice yes, but the best thing is, you choose, too.

    Agent Smith: Why, Mr. Anderson? Why do you do it? Why get up? Why keep fighting? Do you believe you're fighting for something? For more than your survival? Can you tell me what it is? Do you even know? Is it freedom? Or truth? Perhaps peace? Yes? No? Could it be for love? Illusions, Mr. Anderson. Vagaries of perception. The temporary constructs of a feeble human intellect trying desperately to justify an existence that is without meaning or purpose. And all of them as artificial as the Matrix itself, although only a human mind could invent something as insipid as love. You must be able to see it, Mr. Anderson. You must know it by now. You can't win. It's pointless to keep fighting. Why, Mr. Anderson? Why? Why do you persist?
    Neo: Because I choose to(o).

    You choose also
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    Mar 21 2013: No, a job or work is just a means to an end in most cases. I chose a job I enjoyed but it still doesn't matter in meaning, only to reduce some of the tensions between people's expectations and their experience. A person's reality and meaning is in everything they do. Whether someone can smile in the rain or if they take unexpected events to be distractions or opportunities.
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    Mar 21 2013: IMO .. I think it is the reverse. My job supports my reality, meaning, and purpose. If I were to be a civil engineer and ran a sewage plant ... I would hope that my reality, meaning, and purpose would not be a bunch of crap ....

    Bob.
  • Mar 20 2013: not really,lots of educators aren't from normal universities but others fields.they are good at education more.
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    Mar 19 2013: The job/school may affect the purpose and meaning of life to an extent...depending on the (life)situation. The vast majority spend more time at school/job than with their family. A vocation that does not contribute to the purpose or meaning in life would be unfruitful, in my humble opinion.
    It is a choice..really...one can make valid arguments on both sides.
    • Mar 20 2013: I disagree. I don't feel like this in my job, but when I look around me and hear people talking about their jobs, I feel like our society has forced many people to be in jobs that they do not enjoy and that do make their life unfruitful. It is truly unfortunate, but if you conduct a pole, I doubt that the majority of the people who have a job are happy in it. They go to their job in order to sustain themselves, their family and home. The world we live in now is much more dependent on financial security than meaning of life.
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        Mar 21 2013: "I don't feel like this in my job, but when I look around me and hear people talking about their jobs, I feel like our society has forced many people to be in jobs that they do not enjoy and that do make their life unfruitful."
        Karim, why do you think so? I believe that it is still a personal choice/decision...our society does not force anyone to remain in jobs.
        " I doubt that the majority of the people who have a job are happy in it. They go to their job in order to sustain themselves, their family and home.The world we live in now is much more dependent on financial security than meaning of life"
        True. However, livelihood is important as well. We also have to take the individual's life situation in consideration. For ex:,there may be school loans to pay off or a family to support which may take precedence for that individual.
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          Mar 22 2013: yes, this "I must do that...' or i MUST do that... its all a huge myth! nobody MUST do anything...

          These are OUR choices, and WE should take responsibility for our own lives...
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    Mar 18 2013: Not at all. Destiny is the privilege of only a few people: those who have a definite individual life line. The lives of most people are so intermingled with others - so little individual - that they can only have a Massenschicksal, which in each particular case is just fate.
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      Mar 19 2013: what does "Massenschiksal" mean?
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        Mar 19 2013: It is best understood in German I am affraid, but its closest translation is "mass fate"
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    Mar 18 2013: well, it's one of the things. But a job isn't really a set thing, each person remakes a job slightly in their own image.
  • Mar 18 2013: I am a part of all that I have seen and done - as the poem says Oh yes, Tennyson is writing about the Ulyses that Dante sent to Hell. However, i believe that it is true of all of us.
  • Mar 18 2013: I would think that a persons reality, meaning, and purpose determines their choice of study/job.