There is no simple answer to this question.
Humans have been put on this earth with the knowledge of self-awareness and the ability to manipulate the environments that they inhabit to a greater extent than any other species on the planet.
Ultimately one must wonder what purpose there is to one’s own existence and define what it means to be.
So before we go any further let’s get a few definitions out-of-the-way.
Philosophers such as Socrates and Plato believed that our purpose in this life was to gain knowledge in preparation for the next life.
Epicurus believed that pleasure is the main goal in life. He did not believe in an afterlife or that a person had a soul that lived forever.
Richard Robinson’s viewpoint: Life Has No Purpose he argues that “there is no god to make up for the limitations of our power” and that man must look after himself and live his life for himself.
James Joyce’s “There is no person in this universe to love us except ourselves”.
“Araby” displays the theme that life has no meaning through the use of setting, characters, symbols, and motifs.
“If a man hasn’t discovered something he will die for, then he hasn’t got a reason to live.” These were famous words of the late Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.“
To live is to suffer; to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering.” Friedrich Nietzsche’s articulate definition of life.
However the problem is that every type of human activity has a malignant equivalent.
Like the pursuit of happiness, the accumulation of wealth, the exercise of power, the love of one’s self are all tools in the struggle to survive, they all lead to the pursuing pleasures (hedonism), greed and avarice as manifested in criminal activities, murderous authoritarian regimes and narcissism.
We create ourselves and that is what life is all about. Not so.
This is vanity not meaning. We struggle to be better than others so we can have the money, the glory, and the luxuries and when we achieve this like Bill Gates we will have to find meaning by doing good deeds.
A desire to find a higher purpose or meaning keeps people from the possibility that life has no meaning.
Lives that are filled with vanity, which is meaningless, have no meaning other than looking at yourself in the mirror.
These things cause us to think about what we can’t see and even allow us to engage ourselves in questioning the meaning behind our existence and what our purpose is here on earth.
As soon as the caveman progressed to the point where he ceased living in terror of the animals, the weather and all the gods, he started thinking about his life and what it meant. Since the conception of language and the thousands of technical refinements that brought us to the printed page, mankind has written much about this mysterious force.
It is interesting to note that “life” has 44 definitions — one of the most defined words in the world.
Where did we come from?’, `Why are we here?’, `Where are we going?’.
The abstract idea of life cannot be explained by such simple ideas as being animated, breathing, or speaking. Ordinary machines in this century can perform all of these basic functions.
If humanity was not able to say what they were thinking and feeling it would be very hard to create a life. Also if humanity was not able to speak what was on their mind, we might as well be dead.
The most difficult thing in life is finding something worth living for. The second most difficult thing is knowing when you’ve found it.
Maybe you are frustrated and confused when you think about this.
That is good. Frustration is a push on the back, to get you moving, so you will look around and make discoveries.
So we have to examine the nature of meaning itself.
Meaning is by definition the point, or the intended goal.
If life and the universe is some sort of toy or form of entertainment for some prime mover, what would then be the meaning of humans and the universe.
Consider the goals of the deities of various cultures. Some strive for a balance between the forces of ‘good’ and ‘evil’. This balance seems to simply be a choice of the deity, the way he thinks it ought to be.
The concept of a prime mover as a source of the meaning of life is flawed, because in talking about an actual point to absolutely everything, we are simply considering the goals of a being more powerful than ourselves who has chosen one of many possible goals that humans can conceive of.
This is to say that, if a God like this exists, his goal for life and the universe is not necessarily valid as a meaning of life, the universe, and himself.
For instance, the Bible claims that the Christian deity created the universe and placed humans in it that they might be in awe of his power. If this is so, why is worship the correct response? The meaning of the universe as created by God is the entertainment of God, but what is the meaning of the larger system containing God and his creations?
Is there a POINT to this?
Is there some kind of logic circuit in the brain that emulates the universe. It is true, then this structure in the brain is truth itself, defined, the pattern of the universe, and we need search no further than ourselves to find a meaning.
So why do we have so much trouble thinking about things that we have never actually encountered, like infinity.
But there can be no singular meaning of life to stand for us all, or even any one of us. Life is different for us all. A person’s lifetime is filled with self-examination.
Life and its meaning is far too complex for any human to fully comprehend because it to come from some outside source “‘Everything that ever has been always will be, and everything that ever will be always has been”
Up to now we have used logic and reasoning in order to explain why things happen and to advance ourselves.
THIS TRIED AND TESTED METHOD IS NOW BEING REPLACED AS YOU READ WITH AI
( ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE)
Trying to put words to the meaning of life is a task of absolute absurdity, as life gives meaning to Life.
For me it’s realizing that the purpose of human life, no matter who is controlling it, is to love whoever is around to be loved. For me, this is a work in progress.
Unfortunately there isn’t anyway for me to figure out whether I am right or wrong so I will leave you with the words of Robert Browning,
“Each life unfulfilled you see,
It hangs still, patchy and scrappy;
We have not sighed deep, laughed free,
Starved, feasted, despaired-been happy.”
In order to create the perfect life things need to be said whether they have meaning or not.
The quandary with defining death is not as abstract and elusive as that of life.
All that we have accomplished, ends.
Then the process begins all over again with the next generation. We are here to reproduce. It has been genetically coded into us.
Is that the meaning of life.?
Interpreting the idea of life in terms death may become something of the past but without death there will be no point in living for eternity.
What are you as an individual contributing to this life? I dare you to press the like button.