What is the meaning of existence?

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What is the meaning of existence?

Postby EnglishSpirit on March 6th, 2017, 7:57 pm 

I’m conducting an experiment through social media regarding the ‘meaning of life’. I want to know; what you think your purpose is? What you think is beyond the universe? And so forth…
I’m collating thousands of responses. Your response is anonymous; however, you can provide your first name if you wish. It’s a random conversation topic I know, but your opinion is extremely valuable
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Re: What is the meaning of existence?

Postby RoccoR on March 7th, 2017, 1:55 pm 

Re: What is the meaning of existence?
EnglishSpirit, et al,

•∆• The context: ‘meaning of life’

    Q1: What you think your purpose is?

      § "Purpose" implies two important concepts:

        • There is an intelligent creator:

          This raises the question as the the capabilities and powers of this first level of "creator."
        • The intelligent creator either has:

          No specific intention; but is experimenting.

          A specific intention or objective in the creation:

      § The question also suggests (but not specifically addressed) that there might be more than one order of creation. That is, IF we (a sentient being, supported by a host of other non-sentient life-forms) were created, THEN we must be open to the possibility that the intelligent entity that created us we itself created by yet another, more capable, Superior Being; which may or may not be the Ultimate Cosmic Creator (UCC) or Supreme Being having sovereignty over the entirety of the Universe.
    Q2: What you think is beyond the universe?

      § By definition, there is no such place as "Beyond the Universe." This concept (Heaven or the Multi-verse) is merely a figment of man's imagination. The "universe" is NOT expanding; merely our ability to observe deeper (with the arrival of new ancient light and energy) and farther into space-time (the fabric of space). We can detect distant objects as far away as 46+ billion light-years.

The concept that we are here for a purpose is just an over exaggerated sense of importance of our species. It is a low level --- but shared --- borderline symptom of a Narcissistic Personality Disorder. It substantiates the common hierarchy of societal value and coupled with a lack of empathy for other cultures. The greater this Narcissistic lack of empathy and exaggerated sense of importance, the more likely will be conflict and political struggle.

No person has some higher purpose than any other on the scale of humanity, at the planetary system level, the galactic level, or the observable universe. In fact, the we observe of the universe, the less important our species is relative to the course set by the constituents of the universe. No member of humanity, as yet, can alter the path and destiny of the planetary system, let alone effect anything beyond the planetary level. That being the case, even if there was a Supreme Being/UCC lurking behind the observable horizon of the universe, of what important could our existence be (other than for the possibly amusement of ZEUS).

Most Respectfully,
R
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Re: What is the meaning of existence?

Postby Braininvat on March 7th, 2017, 4:46 pm 

My primary purpose is to transmit genes and memes. The first part seems to require a lot of money. The second part requires a lot of work, unless I happen to be surrounded by very impressionable minds. I once persuaded an impressionable young mind that, if they stood right in front of a microwave, it would bake their heart. Among my successful meme transmissions, that one stands out.

Secondarily, to open doors for cats who cannot manipulate doorknobs.

Time allocation for primary and secondary is about the same.
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Re: What is the meaning of existence?

Postby Lomax on March 7th, 2017, 8:20 pm 

Braininvat » March 7th, 2017, 9:46 pm wrote:My primary purpose is to transmit genes

Really? A lot of the time I'm purposeful about not accidentally doing that.

EnglishSpirit » March 7th, 2017, 12:57 am wrote:I’m conducting an experiment through social media regarding the ‘meaning of life’. I want to know; what you think your purpose is? What you think is beyond the universe? And so forth…

My purpose changes depending on circumstances. Sometimes I want to write a good song, or only play one, or only listen to one. Or to read a good book. I want to develop and maintain friendships with certain people. Sex is good. Irony and dark humour are good. Pizza. Cats. Freedom and truth. Winning arguments.

It's tempting to say the common factor is "happiness", but I think that puts the cart before the horse.

As for what's "beyond" the universe, I only posit abstracts (numbers, sets and so forth) and it's debatable whether they're really beyond it. Anything else we can do away with. As Nelson Goodman said: "there should not be more things dreamt of in my philosophy than there are in heaven or earth".
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Re: What is the meaning of existence?

Postby Forest_Dump on March 7th, 2017, 8:54 pm 

Braininvat wrote: I once persuaded an impressionable young mind that, if they stood right in front of a microwave, it would bake their heart. Among my successful meme transmissions, that one stands out.


Sounds more like the kind I used to prefer for the transmission of genes.

I suppose my purpose in life might have become the transmission of memes by way of my publications. However, I also wonder how common it is to believe we want or need some purpose in life. Sometimes I think my purpose in life is to live life. (I decided to deliberately leave out "just".)
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Re: What is the meaning of existence?

Postby doogles on March 8th, 2017, 5:12 am 

EnglishSpirit » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:57 pm wrote:I’m conducting an experiment through social media regarding the ‘meaning of life’. I want to know; what you think your purpose is? What you think is beyond the universe? And so forth…
I’m collating thousands of responses. Your response is anonymous; however, you can provide your first name if you wish. It’s a random conversation topic I know, but your opinion is extremely valuable


The question of course assumes we have a PURPOSE for being on this planet.

One could be forgiven for believing that all life forms on our planet have the single purpose of perpetuating and possibly improving DNA. We all compete to some extent within and between species for survival. You could almost think that DNA is the deity we all attempt to please. But this does not imply a purpose.

Life could just be a RANDOM chemical accident.

In fact, it seems to me that the further we delve into the microcosm, the more its components appear to become random (Quantum behaviour) and meaningless. And the more we delve outwards into the macrocosm (Universe) the more we discover new variations of its components and the more heterogeneous and meaningless it appears to become. (Yes, I know there are some identifiable patterns, but a heterogeneous conglomerate remains)

And then take a minute to ponder your own insignificant existence. You are reading this only because your biological mother and biological father had what was most probably a pleasant interlude with one another on one timely occasion. You then resulted from the fusion of one human ovum that happened to be present at the time with one of billions of sperm competing to be the first to fuse with that ovum. Think about the odds involved in becoming who you are as a result of such a chance fusion. And then multiply that by the number of eligible females that your biological father could have dallied with at that time. Given the number of births annually on this planet, put your insignificant self into that perspective and then tell me you have been endowed with a purpose.

One could lose all personal perspective of life (‘go nuts’) if one ponders such matters too much.

Omar Khayyam must have felt this when he drafted his Rubaiyat centuries ago and to some extent concluded that instead of pondering such matters we should get on with life the way we find it –
“Here with a Loaf of Bread beneath the Bough,
A Flask of Wine, a Book of Verse - and Thou
Beside me singing in the Wilderness -
And Wilderness is Paradise enow.”


As one wit pointed out, he did not include a blanket in his picnic list.

Or as the plebs in my area of upbringing used to say – “You’ve got it made if you have three meals a day, a roof over your head and half a bed”.

Forget any notion of being born with a purpose in life. You are just a biochemical accident. But if you believe you have the opportunity in the life you've been endowed with to improve the lot of others, or to make our planet a better place in a small or large way, go for it.

Sadly, many of our kind have seriously manifested such misguided senses of purpose in the past that have resulted in a multitude of ideological pursuits. Zealots who've followed those ideologies have achieved nothing but conflicts over those ideologies. And that seems to be the status quo of interpersonal, intergroup, and international antagonisms on our planet at the moment.
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Re: What is the meaning of existence?

Postby mitchellmckain on March 9th, 2017, 2:07 pm 

The maxim of existentialism is that existence precedes essence. What it means is, in so far as human existence is concerned, first we exist and only afterwards by our experience of it do find meaning and purpose. It means that human beings are not tools created for an end but rather children who are an end in themselves, learning our own values and choosing our own goals.

This is an objection to the misguided dogma of many sorts psychologically unhealthy ideologies which try to hijack this issue for the purpose of taking a side on unconnected issues such as theism. Whether we are created by God or are a product of natural laws does not imply either one of these approaches to human meaning and purpose however much a particular formulation may fit such things together. We can deny that natural law means our purpose is only survival and procreation just as we can deny that a god created us a means to an end of his own (such as heaping praises on the god, as is usually favored by the holier-than-thou suck-ups).
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Re: What is the meaning of existence?

Postby someguy1 on March 9th, 2017, 8:06 pm 

EnglishSpirit » March 6th, 2017, 5:57 pm wrote:I’m conducting an experiment through social media regarding the ‘meaning of life’. I want to know; what you think your purpose is? What you think is beyond the universe? And so forth…
I’m collating thousands of responses. Your response is anonymous; however, you can provide your first name if you wish. It’s a random conversation topic I know, but your opinion is extremely valuable


I'm an ant on a leaf on a tree in a forest on a planet. It's turtles all the way down, and turtles all the way up. We're all a part of the infinite chain of being.

And at the same time, we have responsibility for ourselves! How we react to things, how we treat people, what we do with our lives.

There's no meaning in life yet the greats among us spend their lives making every moment count.

Meaning and meaninglessness are two aspects of the same thing. It's the Yin and the Yang. A little drop of each in the other.

EnglishSpirit » March 6th, 2017, 5:57 pm wrote:but your opinion is extremely valuable


I wouldn't put that to a vote around here :-)
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Re: What is the meaning of existence?

Postby SciameriKen on March 9th, 2017, 10:49 pm 

Time destroys all purpose - effort/infinity = 0. Most accomplishments are forgotten within 100 years - let alone a billion or a billion billion
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Re: What is the meaning of existence?

Postby Braininvat on March 10th, 2017, 10:41 am 

I always liked Woody Allen's answer to an interviewer who asked him, "How would you like people to think of you in a 100 years?" Allen replied, "I'd like them to think, my but he looks good for his age!"
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Re: What is the meaning of existence?

Postby Cugoano on March 16th, 2017, 2:04 am 

There is no meaning....it is just made up as it goes along.......humans infer meaning on everything, because we have a big fore brain that likes to fill in the gaps of an existence that is basically unintelligible. It is a mystery why we exist. even as we get closer with quantum physics in describing the makeup of things/reality we still do not know why...

“It is not how things are in the world that is mystical, but that it exists” Ludwig Wittgenstein
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