The average human soul does not spend much time contemplating the question, “what is the purpose of life?”. I have asked many people, all over the world, what they would consider to be the purpose of life. On average, whether it be in Philippines, China, Singapore, Canada, Africa or USA the answers are similar. The larger percentage of people can answer immediately without much inner-reasoning and they would say things like, “to be a good person”, “to be happy”, “to pay off my mortgage”, “to make enough money to buy a house”, and “to take care of my children”. Devotees from the Abrahamic religions (Christians, Muslims, Jews) can answer quickly that the purpose of life is to love God, and to gain eternal life. Buddhists and Hindus can add to the usual self-centered material purpose a spiritual purpose, that of “to live a good life, to gain a better birth in the next life”.
Wayists see a lot truth in some of those statements but they understand it to be incomplete wisdom. We can state the purpose of life in a paragraph using terminology from Christian, Hindu and Buddhist schools of thought. We can say that the purpose of life is to graduate from this soul school on earth, to be born again in heaven as a spiritual being where we will have eternal life, live in bliss and ultimate happiness. If we live this life completely and authentically, exploring every possible experience to learn the wisdom of Humility, Simplicity and Compassion we will gain happiness and if not yet rebirth in Sukhavati (Spiritual Land of Bliss) then at least we will gain a future lifetime in senior wisdom classes in the school of life.
Human souls, before they develop their inherent spiritual potential are not unlike caterpillars. For the caterpillar, the purpose of life has all to do with its immediate environment; all about consuming things, survival and shelter. Humans with higher developed souls become aware of changes in themselves, they become aware of another reality that most people just don’t get. They become less narcisistic, less self-absorbed, and more aware of the greater Truth that lies outside of their own little comfort zone and value systems. Some gain understanding that a complete and utter devition to this lifestyle and attitude is what they want. Not unlike the caterpillar in the beginning phases of metamorphosis, the human soul gains a greater awareness of its true potential and some souls embrace that change. They become susceptible to higher teaching, they live their newfound wisdom and expand their love, soon to become butterflies that soar in new realities hitherto unknown and unimaginable for the caterplillar existence of junior souls.
Iesous taught a higher truth that cannot be understood by junior souls. He discriminated against junior souls, excluding them from higher learning in the way that colleges require Wisdom 102 before enrolling a student in Wisdom 103. Iesous would say to certain people arguing with him, “Why do you not understand what I am saying? It is because you cannot bear to hear my words.” (John 8:43). Those of higher spiritual development, He engaged in teaching because they can understand. Those of lower soul development, mostly religious leaders, He refused to engage in teaching because they are junior souls, in junior courses in the school of life and what Iesous came to teach is Wayism, akin to final year courses in the art of living and purpose of life.
Old Souls and Junior Souls
An “old soul” is usually the wiser soul in the room, but not always. There is no honour in being an “old soul” compared to being a junior soul, just as there is no difference in “honour” when comparing a 4th year student at university with a second year student. All are students, some have spend more lifetimes on campus. Even old souls may be so old (and not yet graduated) because they failed so many courses; it took them many more lifetimes to reach their current level of education (wisdom).
The purpose of life in this school on earth for soul beings is, a Iesous put it, to “Become perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (Matt 5:48)
We have to gain perfect human wisdom in our three majors, Humility, Simplicity and Compassion to be reborn in heaven where our heavenly Father and siblings will teach us to become more like our heavenly Father.
Our heavenly Father is not, as some erroneously teach, the Almighty One. No being can ever be as perfect and powerful as the Almighty. God, our heavenly Father often refers to himself in Scripture by the Sanskrit title Tathāgata reserved for the most senior of spiritual beings (greater even than our Lord Saviour of the World). Tathāgata means, ‘I have gone before’. Our heavenly Father is a most ancient being who have traversed the Way, who had been in its flow for more time than human minds can truly understand. Of the oldest Scriptures available to humankind (such as the Upanishads) speak of The Man of Heaven. Therefore, our father and the most advanced of spiritual beings in Sukhavati are templates for our development, they are our examples and our ideals that we hope to attain. To this effect Iesous refers to himself as Son of Man. The great spiritual beings in our heaven, all “have gone before” and act as examples for us to emulate.
The purpose of life is tied to the purpose of this school of life, to learn the wisdom required to be metamorphosed (reborn) as spiritual beings. Nothing else.
More advanced souls start to understand that Love for all other beings is an all encompassing attitude. If you do not have that love, you have nothing but an empty junior soul. If you have all the religion a mind can bear, you pray five times a day and fast and praise God for His greatness every moment of your life, but you do not have the kind of Love for all living beings that seeks equality for all irrespective of gender, age, religion, race or creed, then you are an empty junior soul with a long way to go before graduation.
This English language word ‘Love’, is insufficient because it does not properly describe the wisdom. Even the ancient Greek that Iesous spoke had more, and better, word to speak of Love trhan our modern English language. Our Scripture and Primary Text states that we need above all things the attitude of loving-kindness and understanding of others’ plight that comes because of living the wisdom gained from Humility, Simplicity and Compassion.
Writing for a Christian audience, Paul, in Corinth in the first century put it this way, “If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor and if I surrender my body to be burned but do not have love, it profits me nothing. Love is patient, love is kind, it is not jealous; love does not brag, it is not arrogant, it does not act unbecomingly, it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away. When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known. But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love.”
Iesous preached to the Jews of the first century about religious arrogance, bigotry and spiritual pride as the root cause why He could foresee the fall of Jerusalem and destruction of the Temple in AD70. To the same audience He said, “The greatest commandment (which you have in your Holy Scripture) is Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” Then Iesous added this Wayist line “The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:30-31)
The concept of loving one’s enemies, and loving those beings with whom we share space on earth was new at the time because people were animated with socially justifiable tribal bigotry and hatred. Avalokiteshvara shows us that He came for all sentient beings, not just persons of a particular religious view, creed, tribe, race, or animal classification—all sentient beings of all natures. We need to learn a different level of Humility, Simplicity and Compassion to graduate from earth, be reborn in heaven and gain eternal life of happiness.