How Can We Live Well Using Life Design kiwiconnexion practical theology

How Can We Live Well Using Life Design kiwiconnexion practical theology


Welcome everyone. I’m David Bell. A question
on most people’s minds these days is: how can we live well? What is the secret of a
well-designed life? Last episode we discussed using hygge, the
Danish way of cultivating an inner and outer life, balancing hospitality with warmth and
contentment. And we suggested that when we hygge we add to our personal memories as well
as our common cultural memes. This week we look at how hygge itself benefits
from thinking about design. Now design can mean many different things.
Everything that we make is designed. From the simplest objects to the most complex.
Sometimes little thought is given to how an object is designed, sometimes there
is a huge investment of time, talent and money in the design process. Yet not so much attention is given to the
design of how we live life itself. The patterns of life do not yield up their hidden secrets
as readily as the designs of what we make and manufacture. Why is that? Why is the secret of a well-designed
life so elusive? We would make a fortune if we could answer that so easily. But we can’t, all we can get are some hints,
some clues. They sometimes present themselves to those
who are seeking. For example, there is what Carl Gustav Jung called synchronicity. That is, coincidences which happen in real
time that can’t be explained away as mere chance. Who we are and what we do becomes related and entangled with who others
are, even though we may be far apart on planet
earth. This offers a further clue about the real
nature of prayer. We also find a claim about this in the Gestalt. Because design is detailed we often get swamped
in details. But fine design is about the whole object. The principle of the Gestalt is that the whole is other than the sum of the parts. This can be a moment of intense truth in self-reflection. A third clue is displayed everywhere in nature, but it is invisible. Science has opened up the universe to human
enquiry. We see into the nature of things, but we ultimately do it through mathematics. It is like pure thought expressing itself in the world of matter. Maybe this is what Teilhard de Chardin meant
by the spiritual power of matter. Our thoughts become who we are. There are other clues besides these. The secret of a well-designed life is about becoming conscious to these principles. It’s curious, but any intelligent reading of the Gospels reveals the same principles at work. Generations have looked to Jesus and to other great religious figures as reliable
guides. In each of them we see hygge at work, and synchronocity, the Gestalt, and the power of thought coming into play. As we follow, it results in a new life of prayer and self-reflection, something deeper, more archetypal, more meme-like. Gradually our lives in individual action seem
to be, and our collective living seems to be, more designed, less random, more purpose-built, less thrown together by
chance. Chance and accident don’t entirely disappear but their significance becomes charged with
meaning. You can learn more about all of this in the
video series C G Jung and the Psyche: exploring the contours
of a 21st century soul. To find it visit our website kiwiconnexion.nz Subscribe, like and share in YouTube, purple-yellow button below right and on Facebook. Next time, it’s the last in the series. We consider how to use music and story to enhance memory, memes, hygge and design. And thanks for watching.

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