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The Point: ...

of life
In my view the point of life itself is greatly and needlessly misunderstood, while even actively hidden by some groups. As most people define it, there simply is no meaning. That is to say, no exterior judge and guide controlling or willing your every action for some purpose that he/she/it alone could not accomplish, some purpose that your every action and decision serves. But meaning can be found in another way, and I think it's fairly obvious if you think about it and trust your -God given?- senses. The meaning of life is an entwined point, it is quite simply survival and enjoyment. Without one the other becomes worthless. The most pervasive cause of hurt is the lack of, perversion of, this basic idea. When a human places survival above enjoyment or enjoyment above survival, for whatever reason, the results are often death or a life that isn’t worth living. This could not be simpler, but we miss it. Some consider the lack of traditional ‘meaning’ a grim way to see life but I think that’s because of the ego boost the false ideologies provide, which the truth simply can’t easily compete with. Granted, without that bearded man there is no one to pat you on the back for being you, except your loved ones, but it also means that there is no one to look down on you. There is no universal scale that you can be judged a failure by. For me, a person with an almost innate desire to please, this is a great relief. For others, a point as hedonistic, and basic, as enjoyment and survival is devoid of “meaning”. I see that as a sort of slave mentality. It seems they feel that in order for their lives to be worthwhile two conditions must be met. The first of these being that there must be something greater than themselves guiding their actions as per a plan, and the second of these is that their actions must have underlying significance much greater than is readily apparent, either with respect to or in the eyes of the thing that is guiding them or in terms of overall good. The reason I call this a type of slave mentality is the requirement for a better, or a master to goal set for them, and I feel these views are also the result of at least some form of insecurity given that they feel their actions need more impact than they can directly observe, as if they themselves conclude that what they are doing isn’t enough, regardless of their motives. I would wager that you’ll find the more resistant to the idea of life having no “meaning” a person is, the less they feel they have accomplished. That way the weak and helpless and incompetent can look at their lives and say to themselves that even though they feel their life was worthless they can at least take solace in the fact that the greater good was somehow served.

In other words they tell themselves, “my life only looked and felt worthless, from God’s point of view it was actually perfect”. The idea that anything can be worth more than your own survival and enjoyment may be noble to some - namely those who wish you to suffer or die for them - but it must be understood that even when living ostensibly for others, make no mistake you are doing it for reasons of personal gratification. We are all addicted to endorphins, the only variable is what causes their release. There is no such thing as a selfless act. Even killing one’s self is selfish. The whole concept of a selfless act is demonstrably false. Why this debate is even still a debate disgusts me. A selfless act is defined by the general public, and for the purposes of this book, as an act that exclusively benefits someone other than the person taking action. The problem is a person does not act at all except by will or reflex, and will is by definition a choice, and choice is simply determining the best path and acting on it. But in who’s determination? Yours ultimately, and yours alone. Even if a choice is supplied for you by others, you have veto rights, you have final say, you must take the actions and in order to take them you had to consider them for the best. Any willful act taken by any organism is the result of that organism trying to make itself feel better. Basic examples being, I’m hungry if possible I will eat, I’m tired I will if possible, sleep, my child hurts if possible I will comfort her, etc. The more subtle actions are no exception to this rule. Giving your hair to locks of love is not selfless. Giving the doe eyed street urchin a few coins is not a selfless act. The actions are taken to either cause a tangible gain such as a tax write off, or votes, or to purchase an emotion such as that warm feeling which makes you a good person. Instantly most religious people when confronted with this fact will react in a defensive manner. They feel that by saying this I have somehow attacked every good thing they have ever done for another by “Degrading” it to the level of all normal acts. As if the motivations assigned to us by God’s physical law are somehow an affront to him and beyond his scope and control. This is a gross misunderstanding, the acts themselves do have merit. The homeless in the shelter don’t care why the shelter got the money. So why do people get angry? It seems people feel that a charitable act has to be “selfless” in order to have worth, in order that it “counts”, which is ironic because that’s merely a concern of the ego, since credit wouldn’t matter to a truly selfless individual. For me the moral difference is not in an act being devoid of worth for the one taking the action but that the worth is purely emotional. I.E. Actions alone do not make a good person; the right feelings associated with those actions make one a good person.

If it genuinely makes you feel good to help others, and you engage in the act of helping others for the selfish reason of making yourself feel good than this to me is a good act. On the other hand if a tycoon helps others to increase the P.R. of his various business enterprises then the exact same act can come from a morally bankrupt person. What matters is net pleasure. If the actions of a person, for whatever reasons result in more happiness as a result of their existence during their life time, then they are a good person, its as simple as that. Realizing this fact may be why we have intelligence. So don't feel bad about being a secret Santa, but don't think you're a saint either, because even the saints expected heaven in return.