Can you choose against your purpose?

Would it still be your purpose, then?

(I posted similar things before. I guess I’m still curious.)



confucious say maybe

Maybe sometimes.


didn’t somebody famous say that? You know, that well known person . . . ?

Often you only find out your true purpose after the choice.

Lets not be flippant!


i flip a coin to see if I’ll go out or not

“ah shit it’s heads I can’t go out”

ergo I wanted to go out all along and forcing a choice revealed my (possibly sub concious desire)purpose to me …

I do think the biggest decisions in your life are only rationalised after the event

There’s a lot to be said for the leap of faith

yeah, thats a good way to look at it, Krossie, after the fact.

Sort of like when someone coughs in a movie, you should have known they were going to die of sudden illness. I guess we see patterns then.

What would have to be true for there to be such a thing as purpose for mankind? Would we have to have some sort of special significance in the universe, to the universe?

the concept of a purpose seems to insert value and meaning, and it seems hard to generate these without the choice aspect existing as well… if we have no choice but to act in a certain way, if we are really predetermined completely, then i dont know if it makes sense to speak of purposes within a framework of absolute predetermination at all… maybe it does, but in that case there can be no meaning or value to it, as it isnt US thats doing the action. its just an inevitable result of material physical reactions in the universe.

we can only claim “credit” or “value” or even ownership of an action/behavior when we CHOOSE to do it, i.e. if we could have done otherwise but did not.

so it would seem that, if your concept of purpose is anything differing from hard determinism, then it would seem that yes, we can necessarily choose to go “against” our purpose, since the idea of purpose therefore necessarily supposes choice in the first place.

if your concept of purpose is just absolute hard predetermination or if it exists in a sense of we “cannot do otherwise”, then no, we could not choose to go against it, because choice itself is impossibe.

i guess you should probably define “purpose” a bit specifically for us to decide how to approach the question.

You can choose to go against your instincts / gut feelings which is part of purpose. It will not change your purpose it just more or less procrastinates following your purpose. Eventually what ever lies inside you will direct you to follow your instincts, needs or desires.

I more-or-less agree with Kris. I think we are all born with certain tendencies. Since human beings are more similar than different, most of these tendencies have relatively codified expressions, some of which are acceptable to the society one finds themselves in and others are not. Occasionally, people attempt to adhere to a particular societal narrative/good which goes against their tendencies. So rather than succeeding, they trap themselves into failure and discontentment.

I’m not sure if that completely encompasses “purpose” but if we want to examine people who feel they have served their purpose and those who have not in a retroactive manner, I think it would be a powerful means for comparison.

Nano-bug, I read a literary work once, not entirely sure of its classification, that dealt with purpose and if one could change it. It’s called The Lemming Condition, I think, but I do not know the author. It is a pretty short and simple read and might offer a little insight into the issue you are exploring.

I desire to smoke hash, but I only have hydro, so am I choosing against my desire? Or do I really not have the choice since I don’t have any hash?

Nice analogy there Smears, lol.

I think we can veer off rom our purpose, but not so far off that we are way out of our comfort zone, but far enough to be challenged inspired and driven by the fear of the unknown.