Saturday, May 23, 2009

Philosophy Time!

By reader request, I will be doing a philosophy post! (I have to please my reader(s?)) For those of you who don't know much about philosophy, it's basically the art of making yourself look like a jackass. So, here it goes.

I'm not sure if the argument is becoming more popular or if I'm just seeing it more often, but people really like using this one: "What is the meaning of life if you're an atheist?" Most people don't even dignify this with a response, but it's one of my favorite questions to answer!

First of all, atheism doesn't give you a reason to live. It is merely the belief that there is no god. So asking what the meaning of life is for an atheist is a purely personal question. Second of all, the question implies that believing in god gives you a reason to live. Let's examine this claim, shall we?
This is the part where I need to be incredibly wary of strawmen. If I do happen to make such a grievous logical fallacy, please tell me.

If you think that god gives your life meaning, you can answer the question of "What is god's meaning?" in two ways,
1. God is the ultimate meaning, he has and needs no meaning above and beyond himself.
I'm almost tempted to overlook this answer, since it seems obviously contradictory, but in the spirit of philosophical discussion, I'll explain. Objective meaning is a false concept. There is nothing that is "ultimate," be it morality, physicality, or meaning. Everything is relative. Perhaps god has the most meaning out of anything we know, but that's nothing special. Without the concept of ultimate meaning you may as well worship your T.V. remote, because god is just as meaningless as you.
2. God's purpose is higher than 'himself' and we can't comprehend it.
It almost seems like no one would use this argument; it's so self-refuting, but they do. If god has a higher purpose, said higher purpose must also have a higher purpose, or it would bring us back to option 1. It's an infinite regression.

That was a much shorter post than I was expecting... If anyone is confused, please speak up! I'll gladly elaborate.
Also, any suggestions for future philosophy posts (or any posts for that matter) would be greatly appreciated!

1 comment:

EDDIEO101 said...

"Perhaps god has the most meaning out of anything we know, but that's nothing special."

I'm positively awe struck by your logic, reasoning, insights and observations.

This entire post is genius.

Granted, your just reiterating what I already know to be true. But I don't think I could ever articulate it with the apparent ease and clarity of thought that you do.

Great job, Callif.