13
   

what is the meaning of life?

 
 
CodeBorg
 
  1  
Reply Thu 29 May, 2003 06:50 pm
Ah, but...

The farmer is too busy to ponder, and has little functional use for abstract philosophy. But the tollbooth operation sits and yearns for something else, and philosophy may indeed change the course of their life. We do whatever we need to do.

Asking "What is the function" of various objects has the same limitation as "What is the meaning". The answer has more to do with the person asking the question than the object itself. So I don't actually think it's silly but rather self-enlightening! I have a glass from my vacation in Canada. Functionally, it's very useful to drink water from, but it has great meaning to me because it reminds my of that time in my life and it has a nice, reliable solidness in my hand. I hold onto those qualities and smile. It has great value in both function and meaning.

But you see? Asking questions about the glass tells me answers about my Self !

So I'm constantly asking questions. If I hand the glass to somebody else, they will have a completely different take on both forms of value. And over time I realize the answers have a lot to do with emotions. If I had no emotions at all then nothing would have value, in function or meaning.

Think about that. If I was numb, I would be a machine. But I have rich and diverse emotions, and each one is nothing but a signpost. It points towards something that has meaning. And as soon as I fully acknowledge that meaning, the emotion's job is done and it simply dissipates. People are always wanting their emotions to be acknowledged, simply because they point out what is truly meaningful. It points out who they are.

So I cry, laugh, shiver or fume, at every opportunity while I still can. If I get angry it's because I value something. If I smile it's because I appreciate something. If I mourn and cry it's because I yearn for something. So the more I feel, the more I am able to see meaning all around me in the world. That's why telling someone not to cry -- is like telling them not to live.

So the meaning of life? Perhaps it's just to feel and experience whatever we can. To know with our hearts what is meaningful to us. To really live! No one else can live my life, because God or not, my experiences, values, and heart are my own.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 29 May, 2003 07:51 pm
Ah, but one could say that the function of the glass is twofold -- to contain quaffables, and to remind you of a nice vacation you had in Canada.

I definitely think the busy-ness has something to do with it, which is why I chose a toll booth operator as the opposite.
0 Replies
 
CodeBorg
 
  1  
Reply Thu 29 May, 2003 08:21 pm
The external busy-ness, yes. The toll-booth operator has time to consider these things. Free time that can be freely used in the natural course of events, in a different unconstrained way. Yet both farmer and toll-booth operator follow their own sense of meaning, constantly.

The most productive and valuable time I have spent in my life, has been when I sit and do nothing. Then nature takes over and looking back, I found I got far more done than if I had tried.

Function is what function does, after it's done. The glass is whatever you make it. But without you, the glass is just there with no meaning, value, or function.



'Course now I ramble ...
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Thu 29 May, 2003 10:07 pm
My glass is from the Raffles hotel in Singapore. It's a souvenir Singapore Sling glass that has much meaning, because my new friend and host took me to the Long Bar for drinks after they treated me to one of the best seafood restaurants in Singapore. That was real, and the glass brings back good memories of that event. c.i.
0 Replies
 
cavfancier
 
  1  
Reply Thu 29 May, 2003 10:31 pm
Hmm...this song pretty much sums up the meaning of life for me:

I'm not feeling alright today
I'm not feeling that great
I'm not catching on fire today
Love has started to fade
I'm not going to smile today

I'm not gonna laugh
You're out living it up today
I've got dues to pay

And the gravedigger puts on the forceps
The stonemason does all the work
The barber can give you a haircut
The carpenter can take you out to lunch
Now, I just want to play on my panpipes
I just want to drink me some wine
As soon as you're born you start dyin'
So you might as well have a good time

CHORUS
Oh, no, Sheep go to heaven
Goats go to hell
Sheep go to heaven
Goats...go to hell

I don't wanna go to Sunset Strip
I don't wanna feel the emptiness
Old marquees with stupid band names
I don't wanna go to Sunset Strip

I don't wanna go to Sunset Strip
I don't wanna feel the emptiness
Old marquees with stupid band names
I don't wanna go to Sunset Strip

And the gravedigger puts on the forceps
The stonemason does all the work
The barber can give you a haircut
The carpenter can take you out to lunch
Now but I just want to play on my panpipes
I just want to drink me some wine
As soon as you're born you start dyin'
So you might as well have a good time

(It is actually quite the joyous tune Very Happy)
0 Replies
 
NNY
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 01:05 am
To reproduce and continue the life of your species.
----------------------------------------------------------
It's sad but true, there is no Eureka factor at the end of the tunnel. I tried for years to remove as much ignorance away from my life as I could hoping that I would one day arrive at the Eureka factor. Instead the lack of ignorance has driven me onto the edge of insanity. Writing this is pointless. Nothing matters in the end. Pondering this question is the kind of simple ignorance that I long to have back. It All Is Futile. By no means should you believe me, or search to get where I have ended up. If living in the peaceful walls of ignorance be joyous and do not EVER think of ignorance as a bad thing.

The meaning of life.... huh.

Birth Reproduce Death
0 Replies
 
anastasia
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 06:05 am
feeling a little nihilistic there, NNY? <g>

welcome! thanks for posting.

stasia
0 Replies
 
cavfancier
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 06:41 am
Is NNY a nihilist or just caught in an existential dilemma?
0 Replies
 
LibertyD
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 07:19 am
hee hee cav -- yeah it's funny how hard it is to not feel happy after hearing that song.
0 Replies
 
Sugar
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 09:26 am
cav - haven't heard that in a while. Love it...

The base of my feeling is the same as NNY. But we all search for some kind of immortality, don't we? Some purpose other than simply existing to reproduce and make us get out of bed in the morning.

For me, I think that all we can really accomplish is to make a hole in the world when we die. Are others changed because of me? Is an animal, another's knowledge, another's life, actually affected because I was here? If I was never born would that matter? I can only strive to make that answer a 'yes'. That is all I can do, and live in memories of someone or something.

There are those I have loved and lost that have taken their own lives because they do not feel there is a place they exist that creates a rip when they are gone. They wanted to disappear and although I cannot judge never having lived their lives, they still create a hole in my world and are memories and stories for me and maybe for future children. And so, their lives had meaning, even though they never felt it.
0 Replies
 
patiodog
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 09:48 am
so has this been going in circles or climbing a helix? (i s'pose that would depend on whether you've got one eye open or two, and whether things are flat or tall.)
0 Replies
 
patiodog
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 10:03 am
Hell, I'll just jump in at random here.

CI said that animal instincts will always win out.

cav said...
cavfancier wrote:
c.i., we agree on a lot of things, but this time, I think you are mistaken. If that were the case, we would have no law, philosphy, arts, etc. We are capable of expanding ourselves beyond our base animal instincts (although those are really nice sometimes, heh), which is what distinguishes ourselves from the animal kingdom, for the most part. Most animals wage war, as do we, but none engage in reasoned debate, which I consider different from arguments over food, territory and mates. Wink


I agree with C.I., partly because (if I may allow myself a tautology, whatever that is) we are animals, but also because I believed that all this culture did itself evolve as a mechanism to reconcile our baser desires and the advantage conferred on us by being social. "Law," in its most primitive form, simply means that when somebody does something bad for the group, he gets kicked out or gets his head bashed in. As the group becomes larger and more complex, we had to develop more elaborate ways of dealing with this. Obvious advantages were conferred to the groups who were capable of this organization, and this organizing behavior was selected for. Our willingness to take part in such organization doesn't reflect any higher calling; it's simply a matter of survival: we are weak, soft, and ill-suited to solitary survival -- and, moreover, solitary tendencies are going to tend to get weeded out of the gene pool for the simple reason that the dude living alone in the woods isn't likely to be getting any. We must move with the herd in nearly all things or we perish.

It doesn't get any more animalistic than this; it's why mobs and nations are capable of such horrendous acts, why a nation can be the paragon of "learning" for its time and still launch campaigns to exterminate entire cultures -- because we are monkeys first, and thinking gods second.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 10:06 am
Damn straight.
0 Replies
 
patiodog
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 10:07 am
CodeBorg is smart. CodeBorg can keep tenses straight. Patiodog cannot.

(hi, Cleveland lady. think I'll call you and kay "Cleveland lady" now. it's Friday.)
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 12:10 pm
cav, Many countries in Africa still live by the sword. Animal instinct is still alive and well in this world. c.i.
0 Replies
 
twyvel
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 02:20 pm
It may be animal instinct to post on this board.
0 Replies
 
patiodog
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 02:55 pm
arf.
0 Replies
 
sweetcomplication
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 02:55 pm
It is very interesting to read the variety of opinions, whether given seriously or not, on this thread. I imagine they are somewhat of a microcosm of the general population's thoughts as well.

My belief is basically that each person assigns what or if there is meaning to life and acts accordingly. I don't know that there is an intrinsic meaning to life, so, for me, it seems best to stick to my personal code of ethics and try to let life simply unfold as it will anyway.

Perhaps it's best, since we have no proof, to be able to just tolerate the ambiguity and try to make the best of our lives while we're here.
0 Replies
 
NNY
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 08:06 pm
Yes, but not in the Russian political party sense.

*starts to laugh at his own sarcasm, then, noticing noone else laughing, quickly starts coughing and redirects attention.*

Anyways I hate being classified by some man made opinionated stereotype...tisk tisk

The only possible way there would ever be a deeper, more meaningful... well... meaning of life is if there is some kind of God. This in consideration, If religious, leave it to god to send you in the right direction. If atheist, cry...alot.
0 Replies
 
cavfancier
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 May, 2003 08:20 pm
"we are monkeys first, and thinking gods second."

The fact that we can actually hypothesize this means that there is still hope for the human race. Animals don't know they are animals, humans do. It is our choices that elevate us above our base instincts.
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

How can we be sure? - Discussion by Raishu-tensho
Proof of nonexistence of free will - Discussion by litewave
morals and ethics, how are they different? - Question by existential potential
Destroy My Belief System, Please! - Discussion by Thomas
Star Wars in Philosophy. - Discussion by Logicus
Existence of Everything. - Discussion by Logicus
Is it better to be feared or loved? - Discussion by Black King
 
Copyright © 2021 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.05 seconds on 11/28/2021 at 02:21:12