Sometimes I feel we get confused between "means" and "end". Or atleast, I get confused! Worse still, this confusion happens unknowingly. This topic is very philosophical (and hence boring to many!). To cut it short, here are 3 common examples to illustrate my point:
1. Money - These days we are all for money. You want to study in good colleges to get a good job. And the definition of good job is "good job = good money". You want to go to US to get more money etc etc. But interestingly money is only a "means". It is a "means" to get-along in your daily life, to have some pleasures and to make your journey on earth comfortable. This is so obvious but interestingly the lure for money makes you forget it. You think it as the "end" and hence the goal of life and so run for it all the time.
2. Religion - Religion is also a "means" to reach (or realize as they say) the "end" called GOD. This is one of the most forgotten things. Hence the choas, hatred and violence among different religions. All your holy books, temples, churches, rituals and cermonies are just meant to reach this goal. They are not the goals themselves. Ironically we find most people attached to these means. Worse still, we find people fighting that their means are the best and other means or inferior (or false). Sadly even many religious heads do not encourage people to grow over these means and reach the end. Instead they give too much importance to the means for their own selfish reasons. The result - we have some many "religious people" in this world, but very few "Godly people".
3. Love - This is one example where the end is confused for the means. Love is always the end, it can never be the means. If you love some one for your own pleasure or because you feel emotionally (or romantically) attached to him/her, then it implies that you are using it as the means to reach your own personal ends. Hence that can not be the true love (philosophically speaking). True love is an end it itself and can exist independently. And in such a love there is no sorrow. It is joy absolute and eternal. And this is the "love" which Jesus spoke of and this is the love which all religions set as the highest goal bcoz this love is the manifestation of the God in you.