What do Morgan Freeman, Robin Williams, Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain teach us about purpose of life?


We certainly did not create men or women, powerful and weak, but to worship Me. (Al Quran 51:56)

Morgan Freeman. Suggested reading: Video of Morgan Freeman: Commentary of Surah Takathur

Written and collected by Zia H Shah MD, Chief Editor of the Muslim Times

Whatever goals we achieve in life, those become relatively less important and sometimes meaningless and our horizons of desire expand further and we seek more. Be it money, power, reputation, skills, accolades, beauty, whatever may be your obsession at a given time.

This is the nature of human desire and psychology.

Can we be happy without an Infinite God and an eternal and infinite paradise? In the short and in the long run?

“If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy,” CS Lewis a famous Christian theologian said, “the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world.”

Morgan Freeman[2] (born June 1, 1937) is an American actor, director, and narrator. He is known for his distinctive deep voice and various roles in a wide variety of film genres. Throughout his career spanning over five decades, he has received multiple accolades, including an Academy Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and a Golden Globe Award.

Born in Memphis, Tennessee, Freeman was raised in Mississippi where he began acting in school plays. He studied theatre arts in Los Angeles and appeared in stage productions in his early career. He rose to fame in the 1970s for his role in the children’s television series The Electric Company. Freeman then appeared in the Shakespearean plays Coriolanus and Julius Caesar, the former of which earned him an Obie Award. His breakout role was in Street Smart (1987), playing a hustler, which earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. He achieved further stardom in Glory (1989), the biographical drama Lean on Me (1989), and comedy-drama Driving Miss Daisy (1989), the latter of which garnered him his first Academy Award nomination for Best Actor.

He had the following to say about the purpose of life in a few minutes after achieving that which 8 billion of us desire:

Robin McLaurin Williams (July 21, 1951 – August 11, 2014) was an American actor and comedian. Known for his improvisational skills[1][2] and the wide variety of characters he created on the spur of the moment and portrayed on film, in dramas and comedies alike,[3][4] he is regarded as one of the greatest comedians of all time.[5][6][7]

Williams began performing stand-up comedy in San Francisco and Los Angeles during the mid-1970s,[8] and rose to fame playing the alien Mork in the ABC sitcom Mork & Mindy (1978–1982).[9] After his first leading film role in Popeye (1980), he starred in several critically and commercially successful films, including The World According to Garp (1982), Moscow on the Hudson (1984), Good Morning, Vietnam (1987), Dead Poets Society (1989), Awakenings (1990), The Fisher King (1991), Patch Adams (1998), One Hour Photo (2002), and World’s Greatest Dad (2009). He also starred in box office successes such as Hook (1991), Aladdin (1992), Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), Jumanji (1995), The Birdcage (1996), Good Will Hunting (1997), and the Night at the Museum trilogy (2006–2014). He was nominated for four Academy Awards, winning Best Supporting Actor for Good Will Hunting. He also received two Primetime Emmy Awards, six Golden Globe Awards, two Screen Actors Guild Awards, and five Grammy Awards.

On August 11, 2014, at age 63, Williams died by suicide at his home in Paradise Cay, California. His autopsy revealed undiagnosed Lewy body disease.[10][11]

In 2020, 45,979 Americans died by suicide. Suicide is the 12th leading cause of death in the U.S. Every day, approximately 125 Americans die by suicide.

Katherine Noel Valentine Brosnahan Spade (born Katherine Noel Brosnahan; December 24, 1962 – June 5, 2018)[1][2] was an American fashion designer and entrepreneur. She was the founder and co-owner of the designer brand Kate Spade New York.

After graduating from St. Teresa’s Academy, an all-female Catholic high school, Spade attended the University of Kansas. She later transferred to Arizona State University. She joined the Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority and graduated with a journalism degree in 1985, thinking she would go into television production. While in college, she worked in sales at Carter’s Men Shop, a men’s clothing store in Phoenix; her co-worker was Andy Spade, who later became her husband and business partner.[5][4][6]

Spade married Andy Spade, the brother of actor/comedian David Spade, in 1994. While not legally separated, the couple had begun living apart a few months before her death.[23]

The couple’s only child, a daughter, was born in 2005.[24]

A housekeeper found Spade dead in her Manhattan apartment on June 5, 2018. Her death was ruled a suicide by hanging.[26] Police reported that she had left a note which was addressed to her daughter.[27] The day after his wife’s death, Andy Spade released a statement:

Kate suffered from depression and anxiety for many years. She was actively seeking help and working closely with doctors to treat her disease, one that takes far too many lives. We were in touch with her the night before and she sounded happy. There was no indication and no warning that she would do this. It was a complete shock. And it clearly wasn’t her. There were personal demons she was battling.[23]

Within a week of her death, the flagship Kate Spade New York store in Manhattan (and soon other stores nationwide) displayed a sign in its front window reading:

Kate Spade, the visionary founder of our brand, has passed. Our thoughts are with her family at this incredibly heartbreaking time. We honor all the beauty she brought into this world.[28][29]

Anthony Michael Bourdain (/bɔːrˈdeɪn/; June 25, 1956 – June 8, 2018) was an American celebrity chefauthor, and travel documentarian[1][2][3] who starred in programs focusing on the exploration of international culture, cuisine, and the human condition.[4] Bourdain was a 1978 graduate of The Culinary Institute of America and a veteran of many professional kitchens during his career, which included several years spent as an executive chef at Brasserie Les Halles in Manhattan. He first became known for his bestselling book Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly (2000).

Bourdain’s first food and world-travel television show A Cook’s Tour ran for 35 episodes on the Food Network in 2002 and 2003. In 2005, he began hosting the Travel Channel‘s culinary and cultural adventure programs Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations (2005–2012) and The Layover (2011–2013). In 2013, he began a three-season run as a judge on The Taste and consequently switched his travelogue programming to CNN to host Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown. Although best known for his culinary writings and television presentations, along with several books on food and cooking and travel adventures, Bourdain also wrote both fiction and historical nonfiction. On June 8, 2018, Bourdain died by suicide while on location in France, filming for Parts Unknown.[5]

Morgan Freeman is in search of meaning of life. He has made a National Geographic series about God. You may be able to watch his 18 hours of program online in National Geographic website.

It seems that his answer to the question of purpose of life is that we need God. We cannot be always happy without an Infinite God and an eternal and infinite paradise.

CNN’s Anthony Bourdain dead at 61 | CNN. How can we get to a happy ending to our life?

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