A problem consists
of two or more purposes opposed.
It does not matter what problem
you face or have faced,
the basic anatomy of that problem
L. Ron Hubbard from
Scientology: The Fundamentals of Thought
The word "purpose" means "the goal or intended outcome of something" and "the desire or the resolve necessary to accomplish a goal."
A simple example of a problem is that you want to watch "Dollhouse" and your spouse wants to watch "Supernanny". There are two opposed purposes.
Sometimes you have to dig to see the purposes but they are always there. At first the Titanic sinking may not seem to have two opposed purposes, but lets dig a bit. The Titanic wanted to cross a particular patch of ocean but there was an iceberg in the way. You could say the iceberg had the "purpose" to be solid and the Titanic had the purpose to sail through it. There was the problem.
So, go ahead and pick out some problem you have in your life and figure out the opposing purposes. There will be two or more. See if this understanding of what a problem is helps you to solve it.
Tell me what you find.