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Does the universe/ life/ people exist for a reason?

yes
12% (2 votes)
no
88% (15 votes)
Total votes: 17

Posted By

anna_key
Jan 5 2006 12:54

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anna_key
Jan 5 2006 12:54

Do you think the universe/ life/ people etc has a purpose or not? came into being for a reason or not? I was meant 2 be doing something but i couldnt face it and started thinking instead, thats when my main thinking happens. This is going 2 sound daft, dunno if i can explain it. The reason i think the universe has a purpose is cos i cant seem 2 believe in halves. (Told u this'd be wierd) I often see things as 1 or 0. everything or nothing, a universe without a purpose is like half a thing 2 me, a universe bursting out of nothing 4 no reason, its like a question without an answer, an equation without a solution. why are we able 2 ask the question if theres no answer? why would the universe have questioning beings. I guess im an idealist or something like that, i believe in every problem being solved, everything worked out

jef costello
Jan 5 2006 13:22

The universe came into being because there was the raw matter in place for it to come into being, in the same way as a river comes into being because there is too much water to be held in one place.

Are you trying to distract yourself from writing an essay by any chance? thats why I'm here, on libcom I mean, it isn't my reason for being.

The universe is a given. It exists and we cannot really conceive of anything outside of it so don't worry about it.

The universe is everything, so it is 1.

Questions tend not to have answers, or at least not definite ones.

In a way it is impossible for there to be an absolute reason.

IF the universe had a purpose then how would that be decided, it would require something external, for example God.

But he would require some external motivation.

And that external motivation would require a reason for being and that external reason would need a reason itself too.

Its a hall of mirrors.

Practically you are here because you were born. So make yourself and the people who care about you happy, there's little more that can be done. Also strive for revolution as that would lead to more happiness.

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 13:32

Hi

The universe exists to be the playground of the working class.

Love

LR

Ghost_of_the_re...
Jan 5 2006 13:40

I'm glad you asked this question (because I'm currently supposed to be revising but cannot bring myself to do so). I do not believe the universe has a purpose. But a very important belief related to this one is that I'm sort of stuck here for the time being, and so I might as well act as if the universe does have a purpose. I don't believe human beings are designed exclusively for survival, because we can do pointless things like play the piano and get really worked up about the Chelsea match next week. I do believe, however, that these extra dimensions to humankind (I'm not allowed to say 'mankind' any more apparently, even though it means exactly the same thing as humankind, the term 'man' being unrelated to gender in this context) exist entirely by accident, they are unnecessary bi-products of the evolutionary process which gave us the big brain we needed to outwit bigger, meaner predators and prey.

Another accident of evolution is happiness. I quite enjoy being happy. Happiness as an end in itself seems like a perfectly reasonable concept to me- being as the universe has no purpose and there is no absolute morality yada yada yada. This view of things tends to turn people in to machiavellian bastards hell bent on doing everything in their power to acquire enough money to ensure that they'll still be getting blowjobs from 19 year olds when they're in their seventies. Unfortunately for me, evolution also saddled me with another useless side-effect: empathy. This wretched phenomenon means that shafting other people in order to get my own way actually makes me unhappy (even when the other people in question are scum and deserve nothing better). And so, for entirely selfish reasons, i display levels of compassion and sensitivity that would put most christians to shame.

This combination of emotion and empathy almost seems to good to be true, if indeed it did arise by accident- and it leads me to wonder sometimes whether somebody didn't put us for a reason after all. If we were designed by god, however, I doubt we'd have such a powerful inability to ignore rationality, causality and plain good manners in the name of making the world a truly shite place to live. Or is that the devil at work? Bloody hell I think I've just converted myself to christianity. Again. Sadly, however, the scientist in me will always seek to derive a reason for the existence of god and the devil. This, by definition, is rather tricky as god himslef is supposed to be the reason for existence. And as there is nothing a scientist hates more than a circular argument, I am forced to conclude that there is no god and that all your problems are your own fucking problems and were not put there by some clown with a big beard and a crap sense of humour.

jef costello
Jan 5 2006 13:44

God exists because we need him to exist. This also proves that he does not exist.

(its not in quotation marks because I can't remember the exact phrase but its true)

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 13:52

Hi

Quote:
silly boy, how can it be a playground of the working class, surely if we are still working class we aren't playing too much.

I suppose you're right. Anyway, as you say, we give it meaning.

In a sense, that's the "reason" it exists. It's not a question of measuring the set of all purposes, but mastering all the universe’s resources towards our self directed, wait for it, desires.

Love

LR

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 14:00

Hi

Quote:
I don't believe human beings are designed exclusively for survival, because we can do pointless things like play the piano and get really worked up about the Chelsea match next week

I’m going to wind revol68 up here, and I don’t mean to, but…

These things sport, music etc, are “survival”. At worst they are side-effects of survival mechanisms, but I look at them as exercises evolutionarily designed to increase our mastery of our environment. Sport, obviously, but music and the arts enable us to communicate with each other on an emotional level, sharing information about our subjective experience of with world with each other and with different parts of our own mental map. You enjoy it because it’s evolutionary profitable to engage in it.

Sorry. Now just wait for revol68 to “do his thing”. I’m dying to repost the Sarah Brightman link as well. I expect he is too.

Love

LR

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 14:02

Hi

Quote:
we could just as well sit around flogging each other for the craic.

Well, yes we could, but I think you’d find that Orangutans or Dolphins would then be the dominant species. That’s not acceptable, obviously, because we’re the best.

Love

LR

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 14:12

Hi

Quote:
you end up saying something so generalised that it disperses into nothing quicker than a fart in a wind tunnel.

That’s true aswell, but then we enter the realms of disordered behaviour. Actions which can only lead to unhappiness and self destruction. I belong to the school of thought that says that disordered personality is a consequence of misinterpretation of reality, that is a cognitive approach. What’s your angle? if any.

Love

LR

jef costello
Jan 5 2006 14:18
revol68 wrote:
Lazy Riser wrote:
Hi
Quote:
silly boy, how can it be a playground of the working class, surely if we are still working class we aren't playing too much.

I suppose you're right. Anyway, as you say, we give it meaning.

In a sense, that's the "reason" it exists. It's not a question of measuring the set of all purposes, but mastering all the universe’s resources towards our self directed, wait for it, desires.

Love

LR

but there is no real reason for that either, we could just as well sit around flogging each other for the craic.

But that is a desire is it not?

jef costello
Jan 5 2006 14:22
revol68 wrote:
Lazy Riser wrote:
Hi
Quote:
you end up saying something so generalised that it disperses into nothing quicker than a fart in a wind tunnel.

That’s true aswell, but then we enter the realms of disordered behaviour. Actions which can only lead to unhappiness and self destruction. I belong to the school of thought that says that disordered personality is a consequence of misinterpretation of reality, that is a cognitive approach. What’s your angle? if any.

Love

LR

but what if reality (and by this i don't mean the REAL in Lacanian terms but rather the symbolic order in which we live) is disordered in itself, if it is filled with contradictions, voids and meloncholy spectres?

Revol: The reason reality is disordered is because we are disordered.

LR: There can often be pleasure in unhappiness and self destruction, because we are not simple pleaure machines.

There is an evolutionary element in a sense to all our accomplishments, but its a memory, not a practise. Humanity has turned itself into a speices that not longer evolves, which is why we are probably doomed.

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 14:28

Hi

Quote:
but what if reality (and by this i don't mean the REAL in Lacanian terms but rather the symbolic order in which we live) is disordered in itself, if it is filled with contradictions, voids and meloncholy spectres?

Love it. You see the utility in Wordsworth’s art? I’m not too sure if the contradictions are themselves are a problem, I’m even less sure if all misinterpretation has a self-destructive effect. But a specific set of misinterpretations (eg. Paranoid Psychosis) certainly can.

Also, I think a little bit of Revolutionary Self Theory can work wonders when you are being haunted by Melancholy Spectres...

http://www.cat.org.au/spectacular/thinking.html

Quote:
But that is a desire is it not?

Do not punish revol68 with your pedantry, he’s doing very well.

Love, and I mean it, man.

LR

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 14:30

Hi

Quote:
we are not simple pleasure machines

Speak for yourself. You may represent an evolutionary dead-end, I do not.

Love

LR

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 15:03

Hi

Quote:
but what if the misinterpretations aren't misinterpretations at all but rather correct interpretations of a self destructive world?

Hedonism strikes me as being the best course of action in this case. Which is the same course of action I might recommend anyway depending on how useful you might otherwise be.

However, by working on the assumption that the world is not self-destructive, I take on behaviours that are very rewarding, that is to say, result in enjoyable situations. Most people with consistent rationales that suggest a self-destructive world do not strike me as being particularly happy or, consequently, successful, so empirically at least, I’m suspicious of their outlook.

What is important to realise is that we have the power to shape our own destiny, it is not out of our hands. If we can develop our own environment, then why would we make it a less than happy one? I’m not saying you’re suggesting otherwise, of course.

Love

LR

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 16:07

Hi

Quote:
so basically adapt yourself to the shitness or die off.

"adapt yourself to the shitness" in this case means build a better reality. But yes, you will die off if you don’t.

Quote:
Jesus your shit gets more reactionary by the minute.

I think you’ll find that it is you who are to my right. Middle class philosophy graduates slinging “reactionary” at me makes me piss myself with laughter. It really does.

Quote:
Your a twattish individualist, not a communist.

You’re no advertisement for communism. You’d better adapt yourself to the shitness of your own politics, ‘coz you’re doing a pretty good job of killing “communism” off.

Love

LR

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 16:15

Hi

Quote:
Your a twattish individualist

Honestly, revol68, that was totally uncalled for. Look at these forums, you come over as depressed and mentally ill. You've got some kind of serious Tourettes thing going on. Are you autistic?

Bless you. Seek help.

Love

LR

Lazy Riser
Jan 5 2006 16:31

Hi

Quote:
you come across as some twat despensing sub standard personal motivational lectures

Ouch. I tell you mate, you are not well. You are scaring me. Phone an ambulance, such malevolence is not “normal”. Have you ever been to a “personal motivational lecture” that wasn’t sub standard? If you have, then the joke’s on you comrade.

Quote:
It is a social relationship and requires social action to negate it.

Ok. So what do you mean by “capitalism is a social relationship”, really? The way people interact socially? Is that how you justify your belligerence? Blame it on Capitalism?

Quote:
The fact is that we can't transcend the shitness of capital through mere cognitive rearrangement

The implication being that I’ve said otherwise. I agree with you here, but why are you so keen to not give me the benefit of the doubt? Take your argument and lay it at the feet of the pseudo-Christians.

Quote:
It is a social relationship and requires social action to negate it.

Which is why we have politics, revol68. Other than slinging “communism” around as if it means something in itself, what exactly are yours? Whatever they are, “community” is not a word that springs to mind when I hear you rant. Presumably you support workers solidarity and mutual aid and respect, when are you going to show us some?

Love

LR

Admin - subsequent row split here:

http://libcom.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=7602

lucy82
Jan 5 2006 18:11
Quote:
The reason i think the universe has a purpose is cos i cant seem 2 believe in halves. (Told u this'd be wierd) I often see things as 1 or 0. everything or nothing, a universe without a purpose is like half a thing 2 me, a universe bursting out of nothing 4 no reason, its like a question without an answer, an equation without a solution. why are we able 2 ask the question if theres no answer? why would the universe have questioning beings. I guess im an idealist or something like that, i believe in every problem being solved, everything worked out

anna-key, you've answered your own question. we look for and create patterns. we number and quantify the information around us. we create order out of chaos. there are reasons for why we do that. the universe itself does not have a consious purpose. there is no reason for us to be here other than reasons we create ourselves. we wish to see order in disorder and look for patterns. in a way, this links to what is happening around so called intelligent creation where the adaptation of nature is seen not as an ongoing process of evolution but as proof of intelligent purpose in the universe but actually it "proves" no such thing.

as for every problem being solved, well its comforting but its not true. many problems are unsolved. many species fall by the wayside. people are quite capable of bringing about their own destruction. but also, we do change, we have a huge capacity for change and the imagination of people and the potential still sometimes makes me go vaguely hippie and optimistic (not something i'm known for) wink i'm trying to say we don't need to look for consious purpose in the universe to comfort ourselves against the chaos. the chaos created us and the potential should be ourselves.

end of hippie rant. tongue

Kidda
Jan 5 2006 18:29
lucy82 wrote:
Quote:
The reason i think the universe has a purpose is cos i cant seem 2 believe in halves. (Told u this'd be wierd) I often see things as 1 or 0. everything or nothing, a universe without a purpose is like half a thing 2 me, a universe bursting out of nothing 4 no reason, its like a question without an answer, an equation without a solution. why are we able 2 ask the question if theres no answer? why would the universe have questioning beings. I guess im an idealist or something like that, i believe in every problem being solved, everything worked out

anna-key, you've answered your own question. we look for and create patterns. we number and quantify the information around us. we create order out of chaos. there are reasons for why we do that. the universe itself does not have a consious purpose. there is no reason for us to be here other than reasons we create ourselves. we wish to see order in disorder and look for patterns. in a way, this links to what is happening around so called intelligent creation where the adaptation of nature is seen not as an ongoing process of evolution but as proof of intelligent purpose in the universe but actually it "proves" no such thing.

as for every problem being solved, well its comforting but its not true. many problems are unsolved. many species fall by the wayside. people are quite capable of bringing about their own destruction. but also, we do change, we have a huge capacity for change and the imagination of people and the potential still sometimes makes me go vaguely hippie and optimistic (not something i'm known for) wink i'm trying to say we don't need to look for consious purpose in the universe to comfort ourselves against the chaos. the chaos created us and the potential should be ourselves.

end of hippie rant. tongue

eek

have you been drinking with charles kennedy again?

wink

lucy82
Jan 5 2006 18:33

shuddup, i'm publically stroking my sagely beard. angry

jef costello
Jan 6 2006 01:30
revol68 wrote:

are you saying that reality can be reduced to individuals?

No, I was thinking in terms of reality as social reality which is disordered because people are all to an extent mentally disordered.

In terms of the universe it is I suppose disordered as it is arbitrary, albeit logical.

jef costello
Jan 6 2006 01:46
revol68 wrote:
Jef Costello wrote:
revol68 wrote:

are you saying that reality can be reduced to individuals?

No, I was thinking in terms of reality as social reality which is disordered because people are all to an extent mentally disordered.

In terms of the universe it is I suppose disordered as it is arbitrary, albeit logical.

well yeah but i wouldn't say that people are so much metally disordered cos that implies there is some sort of correct ordering.

The actual Real is not disordered though because it is outside of such human concepts, the REAL just is. It's only in the Symbolic order that things can be interpreted as disordered.

You specifically removed the Lacanian real from the question that began this, I'll assume that was because of LR.

If all people are disordered then it implies that there is a possible order, but it may be one that cannot exist. The gift for example does not exist in reality but does exist as a concept.

The Lacanian real creates mental disorder as it is the void within ourselves that we can never fill, because we cannot consciously have any connection to it. It may be ordered or disordered, it is irrelevant as it is humanly impossible to reach.