How Does an Atheist Respond to the Question, What Is the Purpose of Life?
For a Christian, it is faith that gives their life purpose. In his best-selling book The Purpose Driven™ Life: What on Earth Am I Here For?, Rick Warren says, “You must begin with God. You were born by his purpose and for his purpose.”
But as a non-believer, your purpose resides in yourself; it is yours alone to discover and develop. It’s about choosing to live your own life for your own reasons. No one can dictate your purpose. You decide.
This book will help you understand and appreciate why freely choosing to help and cooperate with others is the true path to finding purpose. Life does not need purpose: Purpose needs life. To punctuate this point, The Good Atheist includes inspiring biographies of humanity’s true heroes—men and women who did not waste their lives as slaves to a God, but rather found purpose in enhancing life on this Earth for all of us.
I bought this book and I am reading it - it's very helpful.
Rick Warren and others like him want power in other peoples' lives.
Born by and for a god's purposes? What nonsense!!!!
My parents had their purposes and I was a result.
I want to be a bad atheist, but not so bad that I go to jail.
Steph, I’ve been following the shenanigans of Rick Warren for years. I even mention him years ago on my first video about the endmeme. (By “following” I mean watching what he does rather than as a sheepish member of his flock.) I said it then and I’m still saying it: these pastors and holy men/women have too much power. They’re opportunists taking advantage of human ignorance.
Who are some of the atheists mentioned in your referenced book? I hope Bertrand Russell is in there—a great man. Ever since reading him in college, I’ve been a critic of Christian values and beliefs. He was an ahead-of-his-time intellectual, mathematician and scholar; so they put him in jail. Same goes for the eminent Alan Turing; is he mentioned?
Catch my other video also that mentions Gov Bobby Jindal of Louisiana. While in college, he assisted at an exorcism of his girlfriend. He declares he saw and smelled sulfurous fumes emanating from her body during the ceremony (ritual). I couldn’t make this up if I tried and he’s the fuckin’ governor of the state.
After all the scandals among the televangelists and megachurch preachers over the last decade, no one should be blamed for thinking they are all in it for the money and the power. The love of Jesus has nothing to do with it.
Beth, I too like your putting so much well-stated thought in your reply.
I want to remark on your question "Or, is there some sort of purpose to having as many people as possible - sort of a cosmic game of 'how many can we pack into a phone booth'?"
It reminded me of the time I saw a full-page newspaper ad attacking the organization Zero Population Growth. It had been placed by THE major bank in Phoenix where I once lived.
"Why would a major bank attack ZPG?", I wondered until I did as investigative reporters do and followed the trail of money. Of course, with a population decline, the bank would finance fewer home loans.
Were I to see such an ad now, I would wonder if the bank is owned by the woman-hating Xians who these days also own the Republican Party.
It's sooo neat that you even ask this question, when the majority of people NEVER ponder it. There really is a beautiful answer to it. Does life have a purpose? The lack of having an answer leads to so many of the problems today. "Life is misery, why get out of bed? why go on living? HEY, I'll smoke some crack and not care."
Orderism offers this. Your purpose in life is two fold.
1. Your evolutionary, animalistic purpose is to reproduce and rear the young until survivable.
2. Your marvelous mind is free. It's free to make up a personal life's purpose and follow it.
The trick is, your life's purpose doesn't have to be the ULTIMATE PURPOSE -it can be ANYTHING as long as it's meaningful to you. If you follow your personal purpose you'll be happy. AND if it's for the good of all, it's even better.
Now, DID your life have meaning? Yes it did (or does) -but that's another subject
Orderism sounds very interesting - I notice you have a link to the website on your page. I will check that out.
Atheists have been big achiever and served their purpose and they have mattered the most historically. from ancient times the greatest achiever Buddha and in Modern times Einstein. Atheist are serious about the tasks they undertake and fulfill it with a great zeal and seriousness.