Torn. The feeling of contradiction within yourself. This video shows the possibilities between two different choices that this mother can make. A young single mother struggling between abandoning her baby child or not is faced with an intensely difficult decision. As she is totally lost in hesitation, the moon falls on her.
The healing of this inner rift is the finding of meaning in the purpose of her life. The suffering and hard work she would endure as a young, single mother is worth the mission of her responsibility to this new life.
This moment of contemplation before a decision to leave her baby or keep her baby is very soul searching. This is the internal struggle between ego and service that we go through daily. It is the battle of choosing between selfishness and selflessness.
Viktor Frankl, author of Man’s Search For Meaning, was a survivor of the Nazi concentration camps. He has done great work in the study of meaning in life. This overview of the mother’s choice is reminiscent of his suggestion to “Live as if you were living for the second time and had acted as wrongly the first time as you are about to act now.” Making this an active part of your decision making process takes you out of the equation for a moment so you can look at your choices objectively. This practice of contemplation allows the mind to see alternate outcomes in order to lead to a decision that is not merely emotion based.
This internal struggle is usually based on our view of freedom and happiness. Our view as a culture is that in order to obtain the happiness that we seek, we need freedom from suffering. Freedom from suffering is a fruitless venture. We all suffer. Unavoidable suffering can be one of the ways that we find meaning in our lives. Meaning brings us hope, and through that hope we experience happiness.
Frankl states: “you don’t pursue happiness you ensue it.” Happiness is not a goal to be reached in itself, it is a side effect of finding of meaning through Love, through service, through faith and even through suffering. The love and service this mother is contemplating in this “falling moon” moment is what gives her the meaning of her relationship to her child, the meaning that creates joy.
On freedom, Frankl has a very important message. It is a message regarding responsibility that our culture has lost. “Freedom however is not the last word. Freedom is only part of the story and half the truth. Freedom is but the negative aspect of the whole phenomenon whose positive aspect is responsibleness. In fact, freedom is in danger of degenerating into mere arbitrariness unless it is lived in terms of responsibleness.” Responsibility in our culture is looked upon as a form of suffering. The thought is that freedom from suffering will bring happiness, but through our own experience we know that is wrong. Only when we are freely choose to be responsible for our actions and attitude will our meaning in life bring us happiness. Freedom from responsibility brings more suffering and more unhappiness. This is a paradox of life.