Although the meanings are similar, cultural attitudes towards the concept they embody differ.
Few possess a raison d’être, but those who go through life with an enduring passion for something, can be consumed by it to the detriment of social relationships and a "normal" lifestyle. Thus, there are seen to be both desirable and undesirable aspects to having a raison d’être.
Everyone, according to the Japanese, has a hidden ikigai. Finding it requires a deep and often lengthy search of self. Such a search is regarded as being very important, since it is believed that discovery of one's ikigai brings satisfaction and meaning to life.
- "Factors associated with "Ikigai" among members of a public temporary employment agency for seniors (Silver Human Resources Centre) in Japan; gender differences", Health Qual Life Outcomes. 2006; 4: 12.(Retrieved Nov 2008)
- "Ikigai", More Explore (Retrieved Nov 2008).
- "Ikigai and Mortality" Psychology Today. 17 Sep 2008. (Retrieved Jan 2010)
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