Copyright © People First Impact Method 2014

Participant Handout 2

The Wheel of Life

Life has a clear beginning. We are born. Life has a clear end. We die. Between birth
and death is what we become. We all want to live a fully human life, to reach our full
potential on our own journey through life. What does it mean to be fully alive? In
living our lives to the full there are 5 inter-related dimensions that are common to all
people in all situations regardless of culture, race or religion. Let’s explore these.

We need to have basic things to survive. Food, water, shelter, fuel etc.

In order to have things we need to do things to provide for our basic needs, to build
and create our home and family. We can produce these things ourselves e.g. as
farmers or traders etc, or we can try to earn money through employment to buy
these things.

To do things in order to have things we need to know what and how to do them.
Fisherfolk need to know how to catch fish; the pastoralist how to look after animals;
the farmer how to grow crops; the tailor how to make or mend clothes and; same for
the musician, the writer, the doctor, the taxi driver, the lawyer, the teacher etc.

We are social beings. People who have been imprisoned in solitary confinement for
long periods say that isolation from others is the most painful separation. We build
relationships in families, partnerships and with friends. We grow as children,
teenagers and adults in and through our relationships. This meets our need for
intimacy, love, acceptance and belonging.

Having, doing, knowing and relating are not static. Our lives involve constant growth
and movement towards being more ourselves through all these aspects. We are
always becoming through our relating, knowing, doing and having. We are always
searching – always growing. In times of disaster people often show exceptional self-
sacrifice and resilience that is testimony to them as people. All over the world,
parents make great sacrifices for their children. For a greater cause people give of
themselves. Nelson Mandela spent 27 years in prison in the fight against apartheid.
We create and admire things of beauty even in the darkest situations. These 5
dimensions are essential to human development and form the basis of our human