Do you have a mission or a career
- This page is part of an ERW course: Building a better world.
- By John Eagles, February 17, 2007.
For some people their career is their mission, but for many others it is not. For some the career is only the visible and most external shell of a fulfilling life course, but for many others it is not.
What is the difference between mission and career? I see mission as an occupation in which you can realize the highest of your potentials, as fulfilling the life for which you were born. Career is more external, it is the visible course of someone's occupations in society.
I am convinced that each of us was born with a purpose to fulfill. This purpose has personal aspects such as our own self-perfection in love or our enlightenment in wisdom. The life's purpose has also interpersonal aspects. We all relate to the world around us and affect the people and society around us through what we do. Sometimes a life's mission becomes visible in what from the outside looks as a regular career.
Usually the society around us does not stimulate us to fulfill our life's mission but it tries to fix us in a course of a career. Most schools and universities of today give you diplomas that work as a pass to become a well-adapted citizen. The higher your diplomas the more chances you have to make it in the world.
What is the character of today's society? There are of course huge differences between the societies of the West and the East or those of still more indigenous tribes, but today's world is largely dominated by societies that place most emphasis on money, power and external knowledge. Who in big corporations cares about your self-perfection in love? Many big corporations offer courses of personal training. This looks like something more internal but in reality the main intention of a company for giving such training is to improve the external human relations between managers and other employees, so the company will make more profit.
Companies and political parties haven't normally been set up by enlightened individuals. The judicial and political system of most Western countries is largely based on inheritance from the Roman Empire, not to speak of the military arm. What tradition is it to first force your might upon other tribes and nations with military power and then to install what you call democracy and freedom?
When we have a clear answer to that question, we can make a more conscious choice for what kind of career we wish to pursue in such a society. Is it possible to make a regular career in such an environment and still have enough time and thought and heart to really develop us as people of love and wisdom?
What are we going to do with ourselves and our children if we ever want to create a better world? In many countries children are now obliged to go to school from early childhood until they are almost adults. Are they learning there to perfect themselves as loving individuals or are they rather being trained to become well-adapted citizens ready to start a promising career?
Personally i think that the first 20 years or so in the life of a person should be filled with the main goal to develop spiritually and internally to become mature and independent and enlightened. More external training in such fields as language, history, math, creativity, sports would be part of such a course but they would not dominate the more internal aspects.
I am wondering what you think of this. How detrimental are today's schools and the world of corporations and politics for our personal development? Can we just have a regular career and still find enough time for more internal growth or do most careers damage the personal development?
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