Meaning or Materials

Major life activity will be in the direction of meaning or materials. Sometimes both are pursued in unequal measure. What is meaning and what are materials? I am referring to the very general form of both. Materials are not exclusively physical. Materials refers to function, arrangement, and objective observation. Meaning is interpretation expressing sensibility and subjective context.

Artists may express meaning through materials. Archeologists may discover meaning in materials from an earlier society. Architects may define dynamic meaning in shelters, connection structures, and conveyances.

Materials themselves may be attended to in the sciences that objectively describe them. Engineers may harness the organizing principles that convert nature to productive use. Yet, scientists and engineers may choose to explore the personal meaning of these descriptions, globally or privately. Meanwhile, materials of light or electromagnetism called digital technology is available to billions of people to define further materials of an even wider variety that themselves may express pure function or meaning.

Activity can be focused to a larger extent on the material and retain a good measure of meaning. Other environments of high material quality and significance may encompass activity of a meaningful nature. Activity follows from meaning or material motivations. Rarely to the exclusion of one over the other but in a proportion that weighs in one of these directions.

Some people are lead to the work of meaning, others, the material. The world evolves through context and method. Achieving each in their higher forms is worthwhile. Necessary to that end are the many gradations that converge both that bridge between each pole of endeavor.

Purpose and good use of time can be defined by identifying which of these aligns most with one’s motivation and interests. Meaning and materials are always available to be pursued. The staring point then is, which do you find more appealing today?


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