A Life worth Dying For

Karl - Los Angeles, California
Entered on April 26, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: purpose

One of man’s biggest issues in life is why we are here, and what our purpose or meaning is. We try to find meaning in various things, and many find it in religion or worship. Since I am a believer of science and facts, I tend to disagree with this approach, and prefer a more existentialist way of looking at it; there is no greater meaning, period.

Believing there is a god can be compelling, but it is also very speculative. Assuming it is true, we can choose a religion to follow, and guide our lives according to its rules. As with most religions, existing or living is simply a means to reach a higher end; coming to heaven. Living this way then means that we will go through life not for the sake of experiencing it to its fullest extent, but rather to take the steps necessary to guarantee us a passage to heaven. If we get there we will never know, since no one so far has been able to recollect what actually happened after death. I strongly oppose this approach, because the only thing we can be sure of is our current existence; not what will happen after, nor what it will be like.

Instead of speculating about a higher purpose, let’s look at how life actually is. In the cycle of life, things that die make room for new things to live. Plants shoot up through the ground, only to serve as food for herbivores, which will be dinner for a carnivore. Since we are a part of this cycle, just like any other animal or plant, our purpose should not be much different. I believe our sole purpose here on earth is to exist, and be alive because we just happen to be so.

If you can accept that life has no spiritual meaning, and that you simply are a biological being with a limited time of awareness, I believe you can reach true happiness. You will no longer wish for eternal life, but rather marvel at this complex system that does not fulfill any other fundamental purpose but to be. Heaven, then, is not coming to a world beyond this one, but rather to be here for a short period of time, being able to experience this strange process of life and death that possibly will continue for eternity.

I believe the most beautiful thing is that which can exist in its meaninglessness, being fulfilled in itself without a specific purpose. If you can accept that the only purpose you have is to be alive, you might just be a happier person, as the only thing you can do to fulfill yourself is to live your life to the fullest extent possible, making sure your limited time on this planet will be worth dying for when the day eventually comes.