What is the Purpose of Life?

Time for a question! What do you believe is the purpose of life? I wonder …

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8 comments on “What is the Purpose of Life?

  1. Alan H. Dawe says:

    Interesting discussion going on here. I agree that we can’t decide our own purpose of life, as we are already alive. Obviously we can create our own purpose, but that is merely to satisfy our own interests, passions and sensitivities, as well as to fill in our days. But why are we alive in the first place? Why did life occur in the first place?

    I agree that a purpose of life, then, presupposes a Prime Cause (whom we have conveniently called God, though this name is so often misunderstood). Can we take it that God exists? My research for The God Franchise indicated that indeed God had to exist or we would not be here, and that essentially the reason is that nothing could not spring into something by itself, and there is no indication whatsoever, that the physical universe is eternal. There needs to be a Prime Cause.

    So why would God bother to create a universe? Whatever it was, He must have had a purpose or reason, nobody does something for no reason at all. There is always a reason, however obscure.

    Would God create a universe merely to glorify Himself? That sounds a bit bigheaded to me, and behind that, rather insecure. Frankly I don’t believe our purpose is to glorify God. If we wish to glorify Him, that should be of our own free will. Then it will be genuine glorification and gratefulness, and not the automatic action of an automaton, designed to glorify like some nodding yes-man.

    Intelligent Design presupposes an Intelligent Designer, so why not? However, He still would need a purpose for his Intelligent Designing…

    So what, then, is the purpose of life?

  2. Servant says:

    Guys, how much have you objectively investigated the ‘Intelligent Design’ movement & work done? If you think they only do ‘fake science’, how is it possible that they have recently published the 50th peer-reviewed scientific paper that is pro-ID.

    You’ve probably heard that science got started by the theists that expect order in a creation that can be discovered. I think the same conclusion springs forth with regard to purpose when we investigate the immense fine-tuning in the world around us. If that wasn’t the case I would much more readily accept the view that there seems to be no rhyme or reason perceivable from the human vantage point.

  3. themathofgod says:

    Whether there is purpose or not is integral to the question of the existence of a Creator. If there is no Creator, no Grand Designer, then thirdobservation is correct in the statement that life has no purpose. And purpose is not something we can give ourselves because it wouldn’t be purpose but an illusion of purpose. We would redefine our purpose as our perspective shifts. But if God exists, and He created us, then we have a purpose.

    Now before I offer my opinion on our purpose, Alan, let me say that I don’t find the concept of having no purpose to be liberating. In fact, with no purpose, we exist to eat, sleep, and die. There are a few more steps in there but ultimately just as meaningless. We perpetuate that meaningless cycle until that day the human existence ends.

    As for what I believe our purpose is, I believe it is to be one. One with each other and one with our Creator.

    • Hi themathofgod,

      I’ve had a quick look at your blog and I’ll be reading it from top to toe.

      “Whether there is purpose or not is integral to the question of the existence of a Creator.”
      If I may clarify – it is integral to the nature of the creator and the creation, not if there is one.

      You are absolutely correct when you say any purpose we give ourselves is an illusion of purpose. That’s exactly what I mean when I say that there is “no” purpose, it is just that ANY (bold and underline that word) purpose we perceive is an illusion.

      You may find that meaningless and I do understand that, but to be frank I find “to be one” even more meaningless. Why? Because I am one. How can my purpose be to be what I am? It would be like saying my purpose is to to live. OK, I’m alive so now what? Meaningless isn’t it?

      It may be more accurate to say that our purpose is to “realise” we are one.
      I accept that as a purpose for some but once that realisation is made, then what?

      If then you decide the way to express that realisation is to go in a cave and contemplate your navel then that’s still your illusion of what it means, the same as if you decide you must help the poor, the same as if you decide you must fight against the opressors, the same as if you decide you must teach others to realise the “truth” of our existence. It is all part of the wonderful illusion. To me a purpose is no less real than my feet, but ultimately I know it is still illusion and as I like to say “immaterial” even though it appears material.

      That realisation won’t stop me from walking and won’t stop me from meeting my “purpose” but ultimately the liberation comes from the knowing that I am one and there is no external force or entity that gives me a purpose that I must find somewhere and then deliver on a promise I didn’t make. I can only fail me, and me doesn’t mind.

      I believe a purpose can only “exist” in separation. If we truly are “one” then how do I get a purpose except from myself, and then how can I do that to myself except through illusion?

      I hope I’ve explained myself better, and thanks for your comments on my post.

      • themathofgod says:

        Hi thirdobservation,

        It sounds like we are walking along the same track but not with the same beliefs and that’s fine. As I approached things from a mathematical/logical perspective, I discovered that the answers are in black and white but that we don’t know which is correct. We either have purpose or we don’t. We are either products of design or we aren’t. And no matter what we believe, those beliefs don’t affect the truth. So staying with that concept, the only two positions that appear to be mathematically supportable would be either Absolutism or Nihilism. Any other possibility would be that wonderful illusion you identified.

        On a separate note, I appreciate your willingness to read my blog and I look forward to your comments.

  4. Servant says:

    …to glorify God. Simple really.

  5. I can’t resist…

    Life has no purpose. Seriously it doesn’t.
    If it truly had a purpose then who would give us that purpose? Ultimately there is nothing but consciousness so there is no purpose apart from the one we choose to give to ourselves.

    There is no imperative that we must find our purpose and then deliver on some cosmic promise we are bound to keep. Nope. If we choose to give ourselves a purpose then fine we can commit ourselves to that, but if we choose to have no purpose then who is to stand in our way? There is nothing we MUST do to satisfy an external imperative because there simply is no external imperative.

    To some people that might seem defeatist but if you really truly deeply think about it and ask the right questions of how and why and most importantly “who?” then it is totally liberating.

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