Thoughts on Man's Purpose in Life

Second Annual Morgenthau Memorial Lecture

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Thoughts on Man\'s Purpose in Life

Excerpt:

Voltaire once said, "Not to be occupied and not to exist are one and the same thing for a man." WIth those few words he captured the essence of a purpose in life: to work, to create, to excel, and to be concerned about the world and its affairs.

The question of what we can to give purpose and meaning to our lives has been debated for thousands of years by philosophers and common men. Yet today we seem further from the answer than before. Despite our great material wealth and high standard of living, people are groping for something that money cannot buy. As Walter Lippman said: "Our life, though it is full of things, is empty of the kind of purpose and effort that gives to life its flavor and meaning."

I do not claim to have a magic answer, but I believe there are some basic principles of existence, propounded by thinkers through the ages, which can guide us toward the goal of finding a purpose in life.

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