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    (Original post by Doornumber3)
    You do realise that evolution is non-random, don't you?
    Yes

    It more likely that organisms with mutations that cause an advantage will pass their alleles on

    I didn't say chance, I said probability
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    Whatever you want it to be. But you must assign your own purpose – no-one's going to do that for you, especially not God. Once you've picked a goal you have the means to conquer yourself and experience life in the fullest possible way.
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    Perhaps this is too simplistic, but it's whatever you want it to be. One would hope it contributes to the evolution of the human species and the advancement of civilisation, but there's no absolute celestial dictator who will force you to do anything, thank the stars.
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    It's the circle of life. Circles are round, not pointy, so I don't think there is a point.
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    There is none. In a deterministic view, there is literally no point. Everything we do, every decision we make, every thought we have, is predetermined by a vast set of variables (there is no other way that things could pan out). We as a species are completely insignificant in relation to the existence of the universe. If the entire human population were to comit suicide simultaneously, it would literally have no meaningful impact.
    We are alive because it just so happens that we have arisen from this mechanical universe, the very same goes for our death.

    Even the very goals we choose in life are predetermined. There is no point to it, our actions are merely the result of an equation.

    We don't exist for the purpose of evolving, it is just another part of the equation. Something that just happens, merely a side effect of our living/existence.

    Whilst we may feel that we are driven to reproduce, we produce for the same reason that 2+2 = 4, there is no reason nor purpose behind it, it just happens.
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    I think theists need to provide an answer to this question before asking non-theists. So, you theists believe the point of life is to worship God, so that He may grant you a place in some eternal theme park? How is that any less hedonistic than the common, atheistic alternative "The point of life is to pursue happiness"?
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    (Original post by Dima-Blackburn)
    I think theists need to provide an answer to this question before asking non-theists. So, you theists believe the point of life is to worship God, so that He may grant you a place in some eternal theme park? How is that any less hedonistic than the common, atheistic alternative "The point of life is to pursue happiness"?
    Not all theists think like that :rolleyes:

    I'm a theist, but my mindset is much closer to the atheist standpoint. For me, life is intrinsically meaningless, a blank slate, onto which I can project my own intentions, desires, etc. I certainly dont think the point of life is to worship God or feel inferior, what a waste of life that would be.
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    (Original post by LeonVII)
    Not all theists think like that :rolleyes:

    I'm a theist, but my mindset is much closer to the atheist standpoint. For me, life s intrinsically meaningless, a blank slate, onto which I can project my own intentions, desires, etc. I certainly dont think the point of life is to worship God or feel inferior, what a waste of life that would be.
    Yeah, I should've been more specific when I said "theists", but you know what I mean
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    God? What a load of nonsense.

    I'm not here because I chose to be. I'm here because my parents decided to bring me into this world. My point in life is to succeed and achieve, creating a suitable environment in order to continue the human race with my children.
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    Organic life = To survive and replicate genes into future generations.
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    (Original post by Darkphilosopher)
    There is none. In a deterministic view, there is literally no point. Everything we do, every decision we make, every thought we have, is predetermined by a vast set of variables (there is no other way that things could pan out). We as a species are completely insignificant in relation to the existence of the universe. If the entire human population were to comit suicide simultaneously, it would literally have no meaningful impact.
    We are alive because it just so happens that we have arisen from this mechanical universe, the very same goes for our death.

    Even the very goals we choose in life are predetermined. There is no point to it, our actions are merely the result of an equation.

    We don't exist for the purpose of evolving, it is just another part of the equation. Something that just happens, merely a side effect of our living/existence.

    Whilst we may feel that we are driven to reproduce, we produce for the same reason that 2+2 = 4, there is no reason nor purpose behind it, it just happens.
    I think that while this is an interesting view which you have thought about, it is unfortunately wrong. Even if you knew EVERYTHING you still would not be able to predict the future (something to do with quantum mechanics if you want to check it out I started a thread on it). One posible reason is the seaking of pleasure. We reproduce because it feels good, same as following moral codes or seeing a family rising to fruition. Humans cannot survive unless we are in a society of some kind and in order for society to survive there must be morals I would say that they are as much a biological imperative as any need to reproduce. So essentially the meaning of life is to be happy...mabey
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    (Original post by aidanhaslam)
    I think that while this is an interesting view which you have thought about, it is unfortunately wrong. Even if you knew EVERYTHING you still would not be able to predict the future (something to do with quantum mechanics if you want to check it out I started a thread on it). One posible reason is the seaking of pleasure. We reproduce because it feels good, same as following moral codes or seeing a family rising to fruition. Humans cannot survive unless we are in a society of some kind and in order for society to survive there must be morals I would say that they are as much a biological imperative as any need to reproduce. So essentially the meaning of life is to be happy...mabey
    I have taken into account the random nature of quantum mechanics however I consider it to be of little significance on a macroscopic scale so I've pretty much disreguarded its effects, though you are correct in that it prevents accurate predictions of the future and yes it does point out a fatal flaw in determinism.

    Though, even with random (well, probabilistic) elements, that still removes free will from the equation which also removes meaning in our actions (and on a larger scale, the "point" of life).
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    (Original post by Darkphilosopher)
    I have taken into account the random nature of quantum mechanics however I consider it to be of little significance on a macroscopic scale so I've pretty much disreguarded its effects, though you are correct in that it prevents accurate predictions of the future and yes it does point out a fatal flaw in determinism.

    Though, even with random (well, probabilistic) elements, that still removes free will from the equation which also removes meaning in our actions (and on a larger scale, the "point" of life).
    Are you saying that due to the fact that our decisions cantake a number of options and the option we takeis random that we therefore have no free will? We do however have the perception of free will.
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    (Original post by aidanhaslam)
    Are you saying that due to the fact that our decisions cantake a number of options and the option we takeis random that we therefore have no free will? We do however have the perception of free will.
    Aye pretty much. Just because we are able to arbitrarily assign something meaning, it doesn't mean that it actually has one.
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    I was going to make my own thread but that'd be a crime considering this one exists.

    In response to the question, what is the point in life? Nothing. Absolutely nothing at all. I see that as a fact (or as close to a fact as possible until dis-proven). In my opinion, the nihilistic view is a depressing one - ignorance is bliss comes to mind.

    Which leads me onto question 2: How do you find meaning? Well as it's been said a million times over, you make your own meaning.
    But what is your own meaning? Your meaning's just trivial too surely. You want to create something? It doesn't matter. You want to help people? It doesn't matter.
    Having the option to find my own meaning, isn't making me any more satisfied in my quest for answers.

    So that leads me onto question 3, which I think is the most important, considering the circumstances:

    Considering everything is pointless, how on earth do you live a fulfilling life while you're here?

    I'm slowly making progress with my own answer. After reading books and books of evolutionary biology and psychology, I can only say that we ought to embrace our emotions. Even if they hold no purpose other than to influence us to behave in certain ways to increase our chances of survival, we should enjoy the ride. Your body and mind are just a pointless machine, so manipulate it. Throw away the material possessions, open your mind and do things that bring out real emotion naturally. Get that dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin flowing.

    Have lots and lots of crazy sex. Exercise. Experience new things and see the whole world. Reproduce. Look after others, but only because it feels good. Connect with people. Love. But love properly, not this fake love that's all the craze right now and ends in divorce and bankruptcy. Be picky and find the right one.

    But I don't mention love in a magical fairy-tale sense, only in the evolutionary sense that it has a purpose to control your behaviour too. But wow it feels good while it does that.

    Rather ironic that after reading forests of books, and endlessly pondering this question, I've ended up with the simple conclusion: be happy.



    post script: Unfortunately I still do a terrible job of all that, and the lack of the above list currently in my life does make me feel like a true waste. Because I'm not happy and want more from my one life, I'm trying to change it to be in line with the above principles. Others interpret this as ungrateful and negative. Frustrating.
    Although in the process of quitting my corporate 'career' (aka life sentence) and planning long term travel.
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    (Original post by Darkphilosopher)
    There is none. In a deterministic view, there is literally no point. Everything we do, every decision we make, every thought we have, is predetermined by a vast set of variables (there is no other way that things could pan out). We as a species are completely insignificant in relation to the existence of the universe. If the entire human population were to comit suicide simultaneously, it would literally have no meaningful impact.
    We are alive because it just so happens that we have arisen from this mechanical universe, the very same goes for our death.

    Even the very goals we choose in life are predetermined. There is no point to it, our actions are merely the result of an equation.
    How do you claim to know this (bold)?

    If I'm understanding correctly, your argument (or one of them) is that as from the position of, say, a future person, history has taken a certain path, so that is the only path that could have been taken.

    If that's what you're arguing for, I don't see it as being the case. Just because a certain path happened to be selected, it can't be said with certainly that another path could have been taken. Unless you can substantiate your deterministic view, of course.

    Currently I don't think it's possible to claim to know our paths have been predetermined, that must be an unfalsifiable proposition. To prove determinism wrong you've have to effectively chose multiple options at a point in time where only one can be chosen, which is by definition impossible.

    However, surely it's equally impossible to verify the proposition of free will, as it would only be falsifiable if one could see one's choice before it is made by oneself, which is, again inherently impossible.
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    (Original post by pjm600)
    How do you claim to know this (bold)?

    If I'm understanding correctly, your argument (or one of them) is that as from the position of, say, a future person, history has taken a certain path, so that is the only path that could have been taken.

    If that's what you're arguing for, I don't see it as being the case. Just because a certain path happened to be selected, it can't be said with certainly that another path could have been taken. Unless you can substantiate your deterministic view, of course.

    Currently I don't think it's possible to claim to know our paths have been predetermined, that must be an unfalsifiable proposition. To prove determinism wrong you've have to effectively chose multiple options at a point in time where only one can be chosen, which is by definition impossible.

    However, surely it's equally impossible to verify the proposition of free will, as it would only be falsifiable if one could see one's choice before it is made by oneself, which is, again inherently impossible.
    It may be unfalsifiable however I see it as the most logical possibility.

    For free will to be possible, it would have to exist outside of the physical world as as far as I'm aware, there are no indeterminate biological mechanisms.
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    The meaning of life is to give life meaning.
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    (Original post by gumtrees)
    The meaning of life is to give life meaning.
    I think you are viewing the means as the end here chum.
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    Well life in itself doesnt have any intrinsic point or purpose. It's just there, what we do or make of it is up to us.
 
 
 
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