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← A universe without purpose

Zeuglodon's Avatar Jump to comment 29 by Zeuglodon

Comment 26 by halfspin

I don't think purpose exists anymore than a first cause does. If "god" was the first cause and gives us a purpose...lets say to spend forever with him (why is he a he?) in heaven. What's the purpose of heaven? A place to hang out in eternal bliss while feeding god our perpetual gratefulness? After 100 trillion centuries or so one might be forced to ask themselves for what purpose? There's no end game that could make sense without an end.

Good point. This is another double standard. People who will grill an atheist's moral philosophy endlessly with the question "Why is that good?" mysteriously give religious alternatives a free pass. After all, why would it be good to do what the world creator wants? Why would I want to go to heaven? If they say it's obvious why, well is helping people lead a good life not obvious in the same way? If they say no, then they can't avoid the heaven question. As Dawkins keeps saying, they cannot have it both ways.

Plus, of course, there's evidence that people exist and can enjoy living. We don't even have to make the unproveable claim that it lasts for eternity to support it.

Comment 27 by Alan4discussion

Comment 25 by Schrodinger's Cat

These sort of issues come up against a fundamental logical issue.......which is the question : What would one expect the universe to look like if it did have a purpose ?

I think we can be near certain, that if there was any purpose related to humans, most of the Universe would not be so far away it cannot even be detected!

The question of purpose always bothers me because I think it's drifted into a field of enquiry where it doesn't belong. If a hammer has purpose, then that purpose is for someone. Purpose doesn't sit around like an invisible mist waiting to smother something. If a hammer's purpose is to hammer nails, then that means that I want to hammer nails and I give the hammer a purpose by picking it up and using it.

Comment 28 by Cartomancer

I remember reading the Greek philosophers' proofs in Carl Sagan's Cosmos, with the shadows and sticks at midday, and the Earth's shadow on the moon. If only Aristarchus' point about heliocentrism had been heeded as well. It could have saved a lot of bother.

Mon, 02 Apr 2012 18:11:05 UTC | #931956