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 Post subject: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2018 4:53 am 
Holy Ghost

Joined: Mon Apr 17, 2017 7:00 pm
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This is currently how I answer the question:

One way to look at life is that a chicken exists to convey eggs. Basically, that's what life is, a conveyance of more life. Life self-organizes because it is. And we as human beings are an incredibly complex example of conveying those forty germ stem cells. The "reason" we are here is not exemplary of a higher cosmological order, however.

And we do not have to assign the reason to ourselves as our personal meaning for living, we get to create our own meaning, if we wish to.

Beyond that, whatever the future holds will be connected to what is happening now, including the choices we make now. The reason for future life, then, will be affected by life now.

Yet future lives won't be obligated to adopt our meanings, or use the reasons they exist as their meaning in life. But we can try to gift the future with mindfulness, or at the very least try to minimize thoughtlessness.

Do you answer the question? If so, how? If not, are you confortable with the absence of an answer? I have an answer, but it is more of an observation that can be changed given better information. I don't need all the answers anymore.


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2018 8:33 am 
God
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Science attempts to answer how we are here while religion and science fiction try to provide reasons as to why we are here. I think the former is doing a pretty good job, while the latter do not. I include Sci Fi in with the why because I believe there is as good or better chance that explanations as to why we are here might be answered by alien visitation(s) rather than divine intervention, but in either case I think those chances are infinitesimally small.

I believe that questions as to why we are here are only asked by those who believe or want to believe in more than naturalistic explanations. I think questions about why are interesting speculative discussions, none of which seem to have a basis in what we actually observe in the universe.

I am much more comfortable with believing that there is no answer to the "why" than I am in the answers offered so far by mankind. If there is some intelligent force out there responsible for it all, we have many more reason to be much more afraid of such a capricious being than we do to worship it. Additionally, if there is no such being or force, than what responsibility is to be had in this life for my actions is mine and mine alone. I have no one to blame or credit for what choices I make.

I don't know about others but I found it quite liberating when I no longer tried to figure out what a non-existent God wanted be to do, I no longer tried to justify to myself why I was following the ever changing and inconsequential directions of a group of old men claiming to know what God wanted others to do. A group of men whose lives and cultural and moral views strongly resemble Archie Bunker.

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Sean Carroll


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2018 12:52 pm 
God

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We’re not here for a long time, we’re here for a good time!

My ‘why’ is family and friends, what else do you actually need to know about ‘life’?

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“A reliable way to make people believe in falsehoods is frequent repetition, because familiarity is not easily distinguished from truth. Authoritarian institutions and marketers have always known this fact.”
― Daniel Kahneman, Nobel Prize Winner, 'Thinking, Fast and Slow'


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2018 4:42 pm 
God
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Personally, the question itself has no meaning for me. I find “how should I live” to be a more meaningful question.

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​“The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the dedicated communist, but people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists.”

― Hannah Arendt, The Origins of Totalitarianism, 1951


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 4:17 am 
Holy Ghost

Joined: Mon Apr 17, 2017 7:00 pm
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Fence Sitter wrote:
I don't know about others but I found it quite liberating when I no longer tried to figure out what a non-existent God wanted be to do, I no longer tried to justify to myself why I was following the ever changing and inconsequential directions of a group of old men claiming to know what God wanted others to do. A group of men whose lives and cultural and moral views strongly resemble Archie Bunker.

As did I. I am probably an overthinker so breaking away from loyalty to those authorities was a huge change for me. So much unnecessary defenses. It feels so much better now, and I feel more hopeful about life and possibilities. I even feel smarter, like part of my cognition has been unleashed and is working for me more because it's no longer working to defend precepts of men I never met.


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 4:22 am 
Holy Ghost

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I have a question wrote:
We’re not here for a long time, we’re here for a good time!

My ‘why’ is family and friends, what else do you actually need to know about ‘life’?


I do think that an independent belief system is important, that a well-founded morality can make family relationships and friendships happen, and also make them richer and better, and can promote overall better life experiences. But imo a good morality doesn't have to be very complicated and it doesn't have to depend on a deity and it certainly doesn't have to depend on an arbitrarily-chosen group of men in Salt Lake City.


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 4:24 am 
Holy Ghost

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Res Ipsa wrote:
Personally, the question itself has no meaning for me. I find “how should I live” to be a more meaningful question.


Yes, I lean toward this...I think that by living we may figure out the answers if there are any.


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 3:04 pm 
God
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With the detection of more than 3,500 exoplanets (many with orbital analysis and some spectrographic analysis of the atmosphere), it is becoming clearer every day that the Earth is indeed a unique planet.

A recent re-evaluation of the Drake Equation that takes into account the exoplanet data and what we know about the radiation environment in large volumes of the Milky Way Galaxy, has placed the chances of us being alone as intelligent beings in the galaxy as high as 85%. That's staggering when one considers that this galaxy is likely host to some 100 billion planets.

We should probably quit the petty fighting here on Earth and learn to really appreciate whatever it is we have.
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(A great start would be to get rid of a President who acts like a spoiled 4 year old and the cowardly cohort who lets him get away with it.)

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DrW: "Mistakes in science are learning opportunities and are eventually corrected."


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 3:54 pm 
God
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Dr W. I can remember as a youngster I enjoyed reading the Martian Chronicles. I could hope to float down a canal on mars and eat a martian fish. I was fascinated by the hope. It was a real emotional blow to learn in the subsequent years as details become clear that our sister planets are very uninviting places to live.

I think your comment about how we can best see our situation is right on target.


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 3:59 pm 
God
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huckelberry wrote:
Dr W. I can remember as a youngster I enjoyed reading the Martian Chronicles. I could hope to float down a canal on mars and eat a martian fish. I was fascinated by the hope. It was a real emotional blow to learn in the subsequent years as details become clear that our sister planets are very uninviting places to live.

I think your comment about how we can best see our situation is right on target.


Well if Dr. W is right and we are the only one in our galaxy, and assuming even a 1% chance that at least a single inhabited world exists in each of the rest of the galaxies, then that would make us one out of another billion inhabited worlds in the universe.

:lol:

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"The lives we lead now are not dress rehearsals, they are the only performance we have. Therefore what matters is what we have here, the people we know and and love and the good we can do for the world"
Sean Carroll


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 6:39 pm 
God
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Fence Sitter wrote:
huckelberry wrote:
Dr W. I can remember as a youngster I enjoyed reading the Martian Chronicles. I could hope to float down a canal on mars and eat a martian fish. I was fascinated by the hope. It was a real emotional blow to learn in the subsequent years as details become clear that our sister planets are very uninviting places to live.

I think your comment about how we can best see our situation is right on target.


Well if Dr. W is right and we are the only one in our galaxy, and assuming even a 1% chance that at least a single inhabited world exists in each of the rest of the galaxies, then that would make us one out of another billion inhabited worlds in the universe.

:lol:

Nearest neighbor galaxy that's of any appreciable size is Andromeda at a distance of about 2.5 million light years.

These kinds of distances make any type of two way communication impossible, even if one is prepared to go for many multi-generational time frames. Bottom line: if they are out there in the universe outside the Milky Way, it can make no practical difference to us.

Here in the home galaxy, a round trip out to our nearest extrasolar neighbor Proxima Centauri, its Goldilocks planet and back, would take more than 8 years at the speed of light.

At the fastest speed we humans have achieved with deep space vehicles the round trip would take roughly 7,400 years. All of recorded history for humankind is generally agreed to span a mere 5,000 years or so.

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David Hume: "---Mistakes in philosophy are merely ridiculous, those in religion are dangerous."

DrW: "Mistakes in science are learning opportunities and are eventually corrected."


Last edited by DrW on Fri Jun 22, 2018 4:27 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 9:14 pm 
God
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I have the question but I have to die to get the answer.

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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 1:51 pm 
God

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To the opening post..I ask this question all the time...but as I get older...I ask..why am I still here???? :smile:


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 11:08 pm 
God
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DrW wrote:
Fence Sitter wrote:
Well if Dr. W is right and we are the only one in our galaxy, and assuming even a 1% chance that at least a single inhabited world exists in each of the rest of the galaxies, then that would make us one out of another billion inhabited worlds in the universe.

:lol:

Nearest neighbor galaxy that's of any appreciable size is Andromeda at a distance of about 2.5 million light years.

These kinds of distances make any type of two way communication impossible, even if one is prepared to go for many multi-generational time frames. Bottom line: if they are out there in the universe outside the Milky Way, it can make no practical difference to us.

Here in the home galaxy, a round trip out to our nearest extrasolar neighbor Proxima Centauri, its Goldilocks planet and back, would take more than 8 years at the speed of light.

At the fastest speed we humans have achieved with deep space vehicles the round trip would take roughly 7,400 years. All of recorded history for humankind is generally agreed to span a mere 5,000 years or so.

The massive distances between possibly inhabited planets, and thus the time (measured in hundreds of lifetimes) it would take to travel from one to another, is the reason I rule out as essentially impossible the notion of alien beings ever visiting earth. Or vice versa.

Of course that doesn’t mean there can’t be a buttload of planets with intelligent life somewhere in the universe. Just that earthlings will never really be able to verify it.

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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 5:55 am 
Holy Ghost

Joined: Mon Apr 17, 2017 7:00 pm
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Tator wrote:
I have the question but I have to die to get the answer.


And then chances are you won't be in a position to "get" anything. (One reason why religion can be such a huge shell game.)


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 5:58 am 
Holy Ghost

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huckelberry wrote:
Dr W. I can remember as a youngster I enjoyed reading the Martian Chronicles. I could hope to float down a canal on mars and eat a martian fish. I was fascinated by the hope. It was a real emotional blow to learn in the subsequent years as details become clear that our sister planets are very uninviting places to live.
.


I still enjoy the fantasy of immortality, of exploring space, the past and the future. I'm not as interested in divine justice as I used to be, though.


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 6:04 am 
Holy Ghost

Joined: Mon Apr 17, 2017 7:00 pm
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candygal wrote:
To the opening post..I ask this question all the time...but as I get older...I ask..why am I still here???? :smile:


LOL :D


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 6:09 am 
Holy Ghost

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krose wrote:
The massive distances between possibly inhabited planets, and thus the time (measured in hundreds of lifetimes) it would take to travel from one to another, is the reason I rule out as essentially impossible the notion of alien beings ever visiting earth. Or vice versa.

Of course that doesn’t mean there can’t be a buttload of planets with intelligent life somewhere in the universe. Just that earthlings will never really be able to verify it.


Question for anyone who knows: Biologically, how inevitable is the timeline from emergent life to human life? I wonder how variable it might be, what the minimum time would look like under optimal natural conditions?


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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 10:45 am 
God
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I don't ask the question as much as I used to. That is the beauty of leaving Mormonism and religion in general. One doesn't have to obsess over these questions as much and therefore one can concentrate more on actual life in the present. Religion needs to feed into the human race's lack of a clear answer to why we are here or where we are going in order to justify its existence. It preys on fear of the unknown and extracts time and money from fearful humans as a result. I'm glad I don't have to deal with this as much. Nevertheless, I still frequent these sites and make comments. Perhaps the next stage is to leave this entirely. If only my family would somehow see the benefits of freedom from religion can offer. These religionists are simply magicians or overly confident or perhaps delusional - maybe a combination. In any event, they don't know any more than the rest of us about why we are here or where we are going. As Tator said, we have to die to find out the answers and that will happen soon enough, so why stress?

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 Post subject: Re: Do You Still Ask Why We're Here?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 5:49 pm 
God

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Exiled wrote:
I don't ask the question as much as I used to. That is the beauty of leaving Mormonism and religion in general. One doesn't have to obsess over these questions as much and therefore one can concentrate more on actual life in the present. Religion needs to feed into the human race's lack of a clear answer to why we are here or where we are going in order to justify its existence. It preys on fear of the unknown and extracts time and money from fearful humans as a result. I'm glad I don't have to deal with this as much. Nevertheless, I still frequent these sites and make comments. Perhaps the next stage is to leave this entirely. If only my family would somehow see the benefits of freedom from religion can offer. These religionists are simply magicians or overly confident or perhaps delusional - maybe a combination. In any event, they don't know any more than the rest of us about why we are here or where we are going. As Tator said, we have to die to find out the answers and that will happen soon enough, so why stress?
I really like your take on this. The one dumb thing I keep of Mormonism...is the worry..what if..why and what are the answers..thank you!


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