What is Purpose?

purpose

Jaycent held up the coin hanging on a band around his neck and watched as it spun back and forth. A gift from his father, the prince’s kunah held the unicorn head symbol that marked him as a member of the Connor clan, or so he thought. “When I was a child,” Levee had to raise her ears to catch his quiet words, “my father told me we wore the unicorn’s bust because our family had a history of bonds with the regal unicorns.”

The gypsy reached out and stilled the coin’s spinning dance so that the unicorn head faced them. “I suppose that describes you well enough.”

“Does it?” he questioned.

Levee rolled to her knees so she sat in front of Jaycent and seized the coin from his hand. “This, my prince, is just a cheap coin. It only holds meaning if you give it one.” She let it fall to his chest, her stern eyes pinned to his gaze. “You think you must fit the role others have laid out for you. That is the lie you need to conquer. Who you are and who you will become is a destiny you decide. Seek your answers where you will, but define your actions by your own code. The one spelled out to you in your heart.” Levee leaned in closer and tapped his chest with her finger. “Who you are dwells somewhere inside of there. Only when you search that place will you find the reflection you’re looking for.”

The Royal Rogue (2nd Edition)

Identity.

It’s an eternal question that rages in the heart of every man and woman, from the moment we are cognizant of our soul until the day we return to dust.

Who are we?

What is our purpose?

What does it mean?

Jaycent asks this question throughout The Royal Rogue as he struggles with who he is versus who he is told to be. It’s an ongoing struggle inside his soul. He feels one way, but the world tells him to act another. He wants to save his people, but the re’shahna speak of a bigger picture. He can’t ask which path is the right one because all of his friends have a different answer. What path he chooses lies in his hands alone.

A scary notion for a sheltered prince.

It’s not until the last few pages that he finally chooses an identity. Even then, it’s only the beginning for the Rogue as he explores his own soul and what he is capable of.

Do you think our identity and purpose are paths we choose for ourselves, like Jaycent’s?

Or do you think it’s a preset fate, like destiny?

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9 thoughts on “What is Purpose?

  1. The primary character in my novel-in-progress, coincidentally titled “Purpose” unless I think of something better, is an assassin of a philosophical nature. Cutler, as he is named, would argue that purpose is somewhat preordained, though we shape what we become. We’re provided the clay, and we shape it. However, he would also say that once embedded in your purpose of existence, the moment you try to change it, much like those Greek heroes who tempted Fate, mistakes are usually made and the end result would lead to death, likely in the form of men (and possibly women) like him.

    Though he thinks of life in much, shall we say, darker capacities, I kind of feel the same way in regards to the purpose of each individual. In some cases, you see children growing up to be like their parents and it seems as though it isn’t a choice. For instance, he’s a mechanic, his father was a mechanic, his father’s father, and so forth. But there’s also a choice in there somewhere. I feel we’re each provided with a path, or even paths, and we ultimately choose what we become, though sometimes with a lot of influence, and sometimes with very little. I feel it’s all relative.

    • When I first wrote this blog, I wasn’t quite sure where I stood. But the more I think about it, the more I agree with your belief that it’s relative.

      Jaycent makes choices that lead to his fate as a rogue, but while it’s the road he chose, it also appears to line up with his “destiny”. When he tried to change it… well, let’s just say he has a heavy load of guilt on his shoulders.

      I don’t know if we have fates in life. That, I still haven’t decided. But I see that everyone has an influence on their lives, and a “set path” carved for them by their parents, if they choose to follow it.

      Thanks for sharing, Greg! As always, I really enjoy your input. 🙂

  2. Here are my conclusions in a nutshell (I’m curious what you think, Greg and Liz). After living through and writing Battleground, I’ve come to believe that fate only exists in biology. This is our “bag of chemicals,” as my uncle/a character in my novel calls it. For example, my “potential” was created at conception, but fate really took hold once I was born and probably going to live. But, because of consciousness, we have the ability to make life-altering choices. It’s the difference between a human and a tectonic plate. If I wanted to be thorough, I could just copy my discussion from my book and paste it here, but that might get me into trouble.

    • Okay, Jennie, tell me if I interpreted this right. 🙂 Basically, what you’re saying is we were born with certain skills and gifts programmed within us by genetics, but it’s the decisions we make that determine whether we follow those skills down a path we were born for, or ignore them and pave our own way.

    • I like this interpretation, Jennifer…for some reason, what you said reminded me of science-fiction tales I’ve read, and even the plot of “Parasite Eve,” the novel and video game. I know in that regard I’m stepping way outside of the proverbial box, but it’s intriguing; how cells are made with a specific purpose in mind, but our consciousness and such shape these decisions. It’s an interesting way of observing it, to be sure. I suppose that’s the great thing about ideas such as these…many interpretations are somewhat required in an attempt to fully realize and comprehend them.

      • This is why I’m such a big fan of consciousness. Sure, we don’t know for sure whether we are bound by fate or create our own, or if God has a plan for us and whatnot, but the fact that we can speculate in the first place is special enough by itself.

  3. If the body is just a vessel to transport the soul through this world; then as such a ship the environment of its surroundings may come to bare but the destination and goal of the voyage set out by the captain will steady the course even in the roughest of conditions. With our souls provided free will by that which we were created as captain of our physical bodies – life’s path to purpose may take many stops at places for rest and safety but we all will eventually end where we set out to go. Not all waters will be calm and the captain always goes down with the ship.

    Without the volume of my rambles, purpose is just what I said in to long of words; just as a captain lays the course we too have that ability only it takes time to realize we are not just a part of the plan but we are the entire plan. Finding purpose is simple as finding ourselves only that’s more difficult in practice, shadowed by the worlds we let construct around us – the oceans both calm and those that carry the storms. We have all had those autopilot moments where we forget the moment in which we are living, passing over the mundane life we let ourselves fall into. I believe that’s evidence, that we control our purpose. The fact we know in the now that this is not what we were to do with our lives. Our own mine chose to ignore it – the task was not us and not important enough to even live through. If our purposes were defined for us those moments of autopilot would be our entire being and not just a call to wake up.

  4. Christopher, this is a beautiful explanation. I do want to ask a question of clarification: If a captain has preordained or navigated our purpose, we cannot fully create our own, correct? We might have free will to wander, but we cannot completely become the captain of our own lives.

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