Purpose in Nature and in Your Life

In this exercise we explore the idea of purpose as reflected in an ant colony.

To begin find a stream of ants in your backyard or in a field. Observe and jot down what they are doing.

Pay special attention to how they interact. Touching one another to convey information and/or assist one another in bringing food back to their den. Consider what all this coordinated activity is about.

Now follow the ants backward where all their various paths converge. Of course this is at the den where their queen resides. It’s here you discover the reason why for the various coordinated ant activities—to cater to the queen ant and her needs. In many ways, the queen provides the purpose for all of the ants. Without her, their activities would be meaningless and the entire, ‘whole’ organism would lose its cohesiveness and fall apart.

Now think about how this applies to your life. As you go about life’s many routines and activities, in the end it is you are their core that provides their unifying and rallying point raising coordinating and raises their activity into a harmonious and cohesive symphony—in essence the purpose of everything you are.

Think how this applies to you in a work group and at the core of a family. The style of your queen bee-like rule surely has a real and lasting effect on those around you. Make sure to generate a purpose that is meaningful, enduring, and pure as the ant at the heart of the ant colony you adopted.