What's it all about?

My life was good, but I had a secret. Though I was doing well in high school and my family was happy and had enough money, I couldn’t shake a sad question that had been gnawing at me for a while: What’s the point of all this?

What that meant to me was: What’s the point of life when we’re all just going to die eventually?

Kind of a downer, I realize, but that’s the way I felt. I’d get cynical at social events, thinking everyone was blinding themselves with petty stuff like small talk, shopping, and travel plans. It seemed they were all ignoring the fact that there was no long-term point to any of this—or at least, that was what it looked like to me.

I didn’t tell anyone about my struggle because I didn’t want them to worry. I managed to escape the darkness by filling my days with homework, play rehearsals, TV, and friends. 

I was low-grade miserable.

While I was studying Christian Science kind of casually, it didn’t occur to me that what I was learning could be relevant to this feeling of pointlessness that no one else seemed to grasp. So I was low-grade miserable. That gray feeling was always there just below the surface, and it went on for around two years. I even thought about suicide, but I loved my family too much to put them through that.

Sunday afternoons were the worst. No school, no rehearsals—nothing to fill up the time and push away the heaviness. One Sunday afternoon, I was alone in my room and super sad in this feeling of “what-is-the-pointness.” But then a thought sort of slipped in and surprised me: “You could try praying.”

“Oh come on,” I argued with myself. “Praying isn’t going to change anything about the basics of human life.” 

But I was feeling so down that I did try to pray. For me, praying meant listening—a sort of waiting to feel a sense of goodness settle over me. I wanted to feel that God is good, and total Love, and everywhere. But as I tried to feel that, a negative thought barged in: “Well, that might be true on a spiritual level, but what’s the point of this human life?”

Then a huge thought came in response: “You’re right. There is no point—not in matter. You’re looking in the wrong place.” 

It was almost like someone said it out loud. I suddenly realized that I was trying to find meaning and purpose in mortal existence—a place that simply didn’t have them, and that would never have them. 

Immediately I felt such lightness and relief. For me, the mental switch was to not get fooled by this dark, limited version life, because in fact, we’re always living in God’s good reality—spiritual reality. We just have to turn and look in the right direction to recognize it. I saw that it was perfectly all right to enjoy the good things in life, but for me, the enjoyment needed to come from a deeper place to be truly satisfying.

Like, say you happened to go on a Caribbean weekend in the middle of January. If you participated only on a surface level—relaxing in the sun, taking long beach walks—then it could be disappointing. You’d be depending on your friends for fun, the weather to cooperate, the mood to be chill. But those things can fail us, and that’s when life can feel pointless.

I saw that it was perfectly all right to enjoy the good things in life, but for me, the enjoyment needed to come from a deeper place to be truly satisfying.

Instead, we need to look for the deeper good in any situation. On the Caribbean vacation you could:

•Recognize how the natural island beauty originates in Soul, the source of all beauty. (Then it wouldn’t matter if it rained.)

•Appreciate every instance of people expressing Love, and see the ultimate unreality of anything unloving, because Love really does fill all space. 

•Notice the energy and strength of Life. You could see it in the athleticism of the wind-surfers, the joyfulness of dancing for hours, or feel it in the wind on your face as you walked on the beach.

Life totally changed for me with the realization that there is a spiritual answer to the question “What’s the point?” I started to strive to “feel God” in everyday happenings. Something Mary Baker Eddy wrote in her book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures sums it up: “We must look deep into realism instead of accepting only the outward sense of things” ( p. 129). In other words, instead of living on the surface, I started to look at conversations, friendships, events—life!—from a spiritual point of view.

And I continued to do that. It’s not like I became all holy or aloof or anything. It was more of a subtle shift in attitude—like looking at life through a different lens.

Now I see my daily life as a big testing lab, where I can explore what God, Love, is, observe how Love is expressing itself in infinite ways, and see how I can experience healing.

So that’s the point of life. How simple. How profound.

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