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Harmony in Meaning: Unlocking Peace, Confidence, and Happiness through Meaningful Purpose

Updated: Apr 9

Out of clutter, find simplicity.
Albert Einstein
Always aim at complete harmony of thought and word and deed. Always aim at purifying your thoughts and everything will be well.
Mahatma Gandhi

 

Einstein and Gandhi

 

According to the American Psychiatric Association, “As 2022 draws to a close, nearly two out of five (37%) Americans rated their mental health as only fair or poor, up from 31% a year ago. More than one in four (26%) reported they anticipated experiencing more stress at the start of 2023, up from one in five (20%) last year.[I]


When those surveyed were asked to explain the source of the anxiety, among a list, one of them was their mental health (41%, up from 37% last year). Forbes Health reports, “Millions of Americans experience symptoms of a mental health condition each year, and the number of people seeking care is trending upward. While a mental health diagnosis may impact an individual’s daily life, it can also have a ripple effect across families, communities and even economies.” [ii]


Caitlin Mazur from Zippia published a fact-checked article stating that “83% of US workers suffer from work-related stress, with 25% saying their job is the number one stressor. [iii]


A man feeling stress

These are not just statistics. These refer to human beings who cannot experience peace of mind and a harmonious psychological and social state. These conditions require a compassionate and practical answer. Come to Logoteleology.


Both quotes by Einstein and Gandhi above are valued words of wisdom; if followed, many suffering from distress could be better mentally. But it is not just about doing our inner work; it also includes fostering harmonious environments where we all can have peace and peace of mind. Our inner peace will show up when we create harmonious conditions for all. As I will explain, psychological trauma comes from two sources:


External Trauma: This is often the result of experiences outside of the individual’s control, such as natural disasters, accidents, war, abuse, or violence. These events can be profoundly distressing and lead to psychological trauma.


Internal Trauma: This can be self-induced and often stems from intense personal experiences such as guilt, shame, fear, or unmet needs. It can also be a result of long-term stress, chronic illness, or mental health disorders. However, this trauma – though internal – can be the outcome of interactions with the external environment.


Thus, regardless of the classification (external and internal), as a rule, the context or environment can very well play a role. But what can be done to remedy and even prevent these sad mental states? I will explain how meaningful purpose psychology's meaning quality model and approach helps.


Meaning Quality’s Harmony

This is the fourth article on the practical concept of Meaning Quality. There are four components of Meaning Quality: Intelligence, Health, Harmony, and Awareness/Mindfulness. I will discuss the component “Harmony” here.


Meaning Harmony

Harmony weaves together distinct elements, creating a symphony of coherence, balance, confidence, and tranquility. It is the ideal mental sweet spot where things in life align gracefully and meaningfully. The disparate elements are the six components that make a meaning (i.e., meaning construct): Attributions, Beliefs, Values, Feelings, Attitudes, and Aims. To review these components, I suggest you read the series of articles starting with “The Anatomy of Meaning.”



The six elements or factors of meaning are constantly communicating with one another. In general discourse, this internal communication becomes apparent when using terms such as self-talk, reasoning, meditation, reflection, and either-or thinking. As we have learned through this series, such interactions have a quality (hence, Meaning Quality). When they are intelligent and healthy, they will produce meaning-harmony, unity, accord, cooperation, and tranquility. In other words, the different components of the meaning cooperate and carry out their role harmoniously. When they are not, they characterize a departure from unity and accord, such as cognitive dissonance.


Logoteleologists help people measure how intelligent and healthy their meanings are. As explained below, logoteleologists guide us to build, repair, nurture, and sustain harmonious meanings that keep us on the meaningful path.


Meaning Disharmony

There are four types of disharmonies:[iv]

  • Discord: Refers to a lack of concurrence—a general type of disharmony or conflict due to misunderstandings and conflicting attributions, beliefs, and values.

  • Disagreement: Signifies a difference of opinion or lack of consensus with others on a specific subject. For instance, two jurists might interpret the law differently.

  • Dissonance: Implies a harsh or unpleasant feeling generated by two or more contradictory attributions, beliefs, and values. For instance, one might want to be healthy but not exercise regularly or follow a nutritious diet.

  • Disproportion: Indicates an imbalance or lack of proportion, such as when certain traits or behaviors are exaggerated or underdeveloped compared to the rest of the person's character.



Benign and Harmful Disharmony

There are degrees of disharmony among the six meaning types or components. Some are benign, and some are harmful. Benign disharmony can show up as discomfort due to hunger or thirst or discomfort due to the room’s temperature (too cold or too warm). This disharmony tells us to consider something important, relevant, and meaningful. Once we meet the need, we fall back into a state of harmony and comfort.


On the other hand, there is a type of disharmony that is detrimental to our mental and physical health – harmful disharmony -- mainly if it is long-lasting. Mental disorders are the outcome of a meaning lacking harmony due to low intelligence and health.


I covered early statistics on Americans' mental state. It is worse in many other countries, which requires compassionate attention and a meaningful response. Figure 1 illustrates the range within which harmony and benign disharmony operate without harming oneself and others. However, when it crosses "the red line," it becomes harmful.



Figure 1 Logoteleology's Meaning-Harmony Range Chart


Relevance

The good news is that by knowing and understanding what creates harmony and dissonance in personality, we can study the root causes and take steps to improve conditions. And with the proper education, support, and guidance, anyone can take positive steps toward a harmonious life.


Harmony in Meaning: Unlocking Peace, Confidence, and Happiness through Meaningful Purpose

I started this article with two quotes:


Out of clutter, find simplicity.
Albert Einstein
Always aim at complete harmony of thought and word and deed. Always aim at purifying your thoughts and everything will be well.
Mahatma Gandhi

As alluded to previously, the solution to harmful disharmony is ensuring that we operate out of intelligent and healthy meanings. This includes focusing on the proper life's prioritiesbeing prosocial (e.g., love), living in peaceful conditions (i.e., psychological and physical safety), being content and filled with gratitude for what matters, engaging in meaningful activities, and building a positive achievement legacy. The right priorities can help us simplify and enjoy life's experiences in ways that make a positive difference for all concerned.


It might not be easy to achieve a complete harmony of thought, word, and deed in this world. But it is worth striving to purify and nurture our thoughts and senses through meaning analysis and development.


But there is hope!



Logoteleologists are meaning architects who help improve and nourish our meaning structures. They guide in crafting smart, accurate, and compassionate meanings. The process is vital. Without it, we risk succumbing to psychological disturbances like anger and division, which stem from low-meaning quality. To live a healthy, meaningful life, we must be diligent gardeners of our meanings, ensuring they are intelligent and wholesome.


Benefits of a Harmonious Meaning

Here are some positive outcomes from vetting and improving the content of meanings.

  1. Genuine Living. A high-quality meaning requires building and nurturing our meanings' intelligence and health to reach harmonious states. This process of meaning improvement brings us closer to being and acting as our real and genuine selves.

  2. Meaningful Path. Meaning harmony is the outcome of a psychic guided by the following orientations:

    1. Being prosocial, caring for self and others (love)

    2. Creating conditions for psychological and physical safety (peace)

    3. Ensuring the well-being of all concerned (happiness)

    4. Engaging in interesting value-creation activities (positive flow)

    5. Promoting the intellectual, experiential, spiritual, financial, social, and psychological prosperity and legacy of a life well-lived for all. (Prosperity)

  3. Improved Problem-solving. Following a growth mindset, intelligent, healthy, and harmonious meanings help us deal with daily challenges more easily. When in doubt or facing error, the meaning seeks to learn, grow, and improve. High-quality meanings simplify decision-making.

  4. Courage and Confidence. There is no internal agenda to protect our ego. A high-quality meaning is reasonable, honest with self and others, and not pretentious. A harmonious meaning is determined and brave.

  5. Meaning of Life. A harmonious, high-quality meaning is fertile ground for discovering and determining our life mission. It will be genuine, meaningful, effective, courageous, and with a clear sense of mission and direction.


To summarize, following Einstein and Gandhi's wisdom, internal meaning harmony brings a simple and decontaminated (pure) meaning to life.


Want to learn more?

Please contact us if you want to learn more about how a logoteleologist can help you with meaning harmony. We also invite you to learn about our workshops, webinars, forums, laboratories, and life coaching services. Please go to the Contact tab and write to us. We will be happy to meet and serve you.


Final Question

Where can you bring more harmony into your life?


[iv] Sources: Thesaurus.com, Merriam-webster, thesaurus.plus, and powerthesaurus.org.



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