The rapture of being alive: The experience of living

Published on 3 May 2023 at 17:09

My adult years mainly consisted of the belief that what I wanted and what I was seeking was to find my purpose. It is a saying I know we have heard countless times and may ask ourselves. Especially in times when we feel like we're just floating and allowing ourselves to be moved by the currents of just existing.


I would always feel incomplete and find that the life I was living wasn't enough. That I can't just be here to do the things I am doing now. And now more than ever I was feeling that more and more. Thus my life journey and my whole ideology on how I viewed life was directive from this pursuit of purpose. I was driven to find my place in this world and my reason for being here. My purpose became less valuable to me as I began suffering some consequences of life, feeling mentally low all the time and constantly having to overcome hurdles just to overcome another. During this journey, I still felt empty and confused, my purpose became meaningless as I lost some control over my life. Who cares about purpose when you are dissatisfied with life? Who cares about purpose when you are feeling and the current things you are facing becomes the hindrance to taking that next step? It starts to completely warp my view and perspective on purpose. When right now is all I have and tomorrow isn't promised, and I am simply just unhappy? So I wondered, is it the purpose I was looking for? Was it a meaning for life I was after?


However, after discovering the phrase 'The Rapture of Being Alive' from a Netflix limited series 'Beef', I did some research and found this was a quote from a man named Joseph Campbell and he states “People say that what we’re all searching for is a meaning for life. I don’t think that’s what we’re trying to achieve. I think that what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances with our innermost being and reality so that we feel the rapture of being alive.” I was blown away by the meaning behind the phrase 'rapture of being alive'. In retrospect, I learned that what I truly sought was excitement and exploration more than the purpose of why I am here. I want to be alive, to be human and I want to know that in all its glory, to know that I have lived a life.


The rapture of being alive is evident in so many examples. The moment a woman gives birth to her child and the whole euphoria of growing a human inside you and birthing a miracle. When you deeply and intensely fall in love. When you travel and open yourself to new cultures and food, you see things that are just beautiful like the northern sky. Even when you graduate from university and all those years of dedicated work and nights in the library become worth it on this one day when you celebrate your achievement and say that you've done it. I think for me those are the moments I look towards, treasure and want to live out as often as possible.


I've given this a lot of thought, and I've come to the conclusion that feeling is what I desire and although they are temporary and my whole life decisions shouldn't be based on feeling but that it is an important factor that I often neglect and don't tap into enough. However, these thoughts do not depart from the theory of purpose. To have an intention, a desire provides a reason, and a reason is a purpose. As a result, without the rapture of being alive, purpose is never reached or achieved. I think the goal for me is to discover the depth of humanness. This is so I can find motivation to take action and progress towards my goals. This will ultimately help me realise my many life goals. Purpose is similar to having a goal that is accomplished during each season of life.


Without giving too much away (I'll save that for my review of Movies and TV), both characters in the Netflix series 'Beef' felt disconnected from their lives and unfulfilled, and the destruction of each other's lives out of road rage provided them with satisfaction. Without realising it, this was the result of long-buried trauma for both of them that surfaced. Their actions and loathing of one another brought them to life and helped solve their past problems from suppressed emotion. When they faced this, their recovery journey began to take shape, and the purpose they believed in changed.


My point is that I don't have to abandon purpose to feel the bliss of being alive, which I am attempting to now comprehend for myself as I write this. By experiencing and embracing life, letting it fill me up, I can learn so much about myself and unlock different facets of who I am. My entire life has been and will continue to be purposeful, with depth and meaning. I will always walk in purpose when I truly live rather than chasing it to live. My entire life was driven by this concept rather than knowing that  purpose has already been made manifest in my life with the opportunity to live and allow it to be transparent  throughout my entire life.





Anu Aborisade

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