Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.


Similar presentations

Presentation on theme: "DOES LIFE HAVE MEANING?"— Presentation transcript:


2 There are two possible kinds of ‘meaning’ for life 1.Transcendent, or cosmic, meaning. To have transcendent meaning, you must have a transcendent personal being. Then you could be created for a purpose, even if just as entertainment for god(s). (Note: I’m not considering the case that you might be born for the reason of some other human wanting love, a slave, descendants, etc. In the USA, you aren’t required to fulfill that intended purpose; you have total liberty here.) 2.Temporary meaning. If there’s no personal creator, then you’re created for no purpose; other than your own, as you determine it.

3 THE CENTRAL ROLE OF EVOLUTION  The creator of everything isn’t God. It is evolution. It begins with cosmological evolution explaining how the universe and chemicals emerged. It goes on to biological evolution to explain how we (humans) emerged from other animals through eons of time. It continues with memetic evolution.  These questions are better answered by natural evolution than by supernatural God:  What is good and bad? (Philosophy of ethics: Consequentialism)  Why is there evil in the world? (It’s just nature)  What is my purpose in life? (What you assign it)  The universe is indifferent to us. We come into the world alone, and we leave alone. The world does not revolve around us. We are less than specks in an ocean. We emerged with identities shaped by culture (religion, wealth status), geography (where we live), and chance (1 of 300 million unique sperm). Rewind, and you get a different ‘you.’ One’s “religion” could be said to be the way to grapple with these facts.


5 SUMMARY HOW TO LIVE YOUR LIFE ON PURPOSE –OR- HOW TO MAKE YOUR LIFE MEANINGFUL  Determine your values (many lists on the internet; mine are truth-seeking, humor, and physical fitness). Values may be aspirational rather than actual.  Determine your personality type (mine are primarily idealist and rationalist; not so much guardian or artist).  Determine your position in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.  Considering the above three items, determine your short- and long-term goals. To continue the discussion online, after the debate, go here:

6 BACKUP SLIDES 1 The Big Picture  The big picture: ancients thought we were on a stable foundation. Wrong. Earth is spinning 1,000 mph and zooming around Sun at 68,000 mph. The Sun is also spinning and rotating in the Milky Way Galaxy. There are hundreds of billions of stars (like our Sun) in the Milky Way Galaxy alone, and hundred of billions of galaxies. Likely there is not just one universe, but a multiverse. Isn’t it egocentric to think this was all created for us puny and insignificant Earthlings, in our relatively short time here on Earth according to evolutionary timing?  The Carl Sagan story behind “Earth, the pale blue dot.”  What makes ‘you,’ you? You are product of one sperm and egg. One sperm out of 300 million unique ones. A different sperm would make a different you. Further, once born, you’re also a product of environment as you emerge. A different religion, financial class, geographic location, ethnic class, etc. shapes your emergence. Rewind, and you get a different ‘you.’

7 BACKUP SLIDES 2 Dealing with Death  Contemplating death (non-existence) can be scary and painful, but it isn’t the worst. (Especially painful for those leaving belief in faith. I’m told that some atheists reared without religion have no angst towards mortality.) In order to grieve losing life, you have to know what life is. This brings us to the science of consciousness. Very trippy! What ‘you’ are is really just a mental model of yourself. You create a mental model of yourself as well as of others, and even models of what you think others think of you. There is no ‘true you,’ just different mental models built by different people, based on their perceptions of your deeds and your desires.  Trying to deal with death (or be in denial of it) could be a major reason for the invention of religion (resurrection, re-incarnation). See Wikipedia for “Terror Management Theory” overview.  There’s an academic history of dealing with mortality and our small place in this godless vast world, known as existentialism. Albert Camas is a leading figure. His instrumental essay: “The Myth of Sisyphus.” The absurd life (so wonderful, yet it simply emerges then dissipates).  We come into the world alone, and we leave alone.

8 BACKUP SLIDES 3 General Comments  Someone is deluded. If God exists, atheists are deluded. If God doesn’t exist, then Christians are deluded. One of us is seriously deluded; it is a fact, and not name- calling. Being deluded is the consequence of being wrong.  I’d rather live a painful truth, than a comfortable lie. For the atheist, believing in God is exactly like believing in Santa (imaginary characters). It’s a great story of hope; but if it isn’t true, I don’t want it. Eventually, reality slaps us all in the face.  Why is there something, including God(s), rather than nothing. “God” is not the answer for why God exists, rather than nothing. ……………………… RE: GOD & PURPOSE, DIFFICULTIES ………………  If God made us for a purpose, ask the Christians how to determine it (spouse, job, etc.). Follow your heart? Mormons say to do that, but evangelicals say they are wrong. Listen to voices in your head? Which ones? Why would God create you for a purpose but not tell you what it is or how to find it??? A Totally worthless position.  Slaughter of the innocents. About 40,000 children die each day from preventable causes (starvation, diarrhea). This isn’t counting the millions of natural abortions each day; many from women not even knowing they were pregnant. Obviously this can’t be the will (meaning or purpose for these people) of a loving God ?!?!


Similar presentations

Ads by Google