Originally Posted by iStudentUK
I am a tiny dot on a planet, which is a tiny dot in our galaxy, which is a tiny dot in the universe. I inhabit it for an infinitesimal amount of time. It's the same for each of us. Our impact on the universe is essentially zero. There is no point to life, no purpose, no meaning. People are obsessed with these questions, without stopping to consider whether or not the question makes sense. Hitch Hiker's Guide anyone?!
That said we can assign ourself goals if we want. Mine is to provide for my family, be a good friend, be good to others and have fun. In (hopefully) around 60-70 years when I die that will be it. I'm fine with that.
At the end of your life, you might be rewarded with a surprise. Of course, maybe not.
Originally Posted by 63dot
I think so many who are on the fence with religion (and that's just about everybody sitting in the pews) are ashamed to call themselves what they really are, which is atheist. They may merely consider themselves agnostic but call themselves some sort of theist to the rest of the world.
Pretty much the only theists I trust as real theists are former, dedicated atheists like myself. But when changing over from atheist (big bang, science, no God) to theist (still big bang, science, Higher Power or God depending on context), having a lack of purpose was never an issue.
Being Christian or being atheist, I think my purpose was/is to live life, be nice, and have a task/job to do. I don't think in any way I am going to change the world in any big way. Big questions in life are things I work on personally, like trying to iron out why the world is at war, and currently trying to establish a connection between certain rules in science (TOE). I will never stop being concerned about these things which will not be resolved in my lifetime but research and discussion on big questions/issues are how they get solved in the long run. Sometimes issues which I swore would never see any improvement (ie- Belfast) did see great strides in my lifetime and I was surprised. The issue of world overpopulation is going start to be tackled if we do go another billion and a half, reach a peak no more than 9 billion as planned, and then sharply decrease from there taking into account huge changes in Europe and China in the 20th century. Taking on these big issues is enough purpose for just about anybody, theist or atheist.
There are two ways to look at it, the science grounded view that when we die, it is over. The other view is a spiritual framework that facilitates continued consciousness in some form. This is based on feelings, desires, philosophy, things that can't be proven, the human desire to continue this fantastic journey. The only reason people want the journey to end is when their bodies wear out. Spirituality, as speculative as it may be, addresses that issue.
In the framework of a human life your description is a great one for "purpose". As I understand it, the spiritual framework for purpose exists on an individual level with lessons learned being carried forward to be made use of by the individual consciousness. I'd like to see this happen, but I don't promote it as truth, in no way can it be described in such terms.
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