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Origin, Required – Meaning, Optional

15 Aug 2014, 01:56 UTC
Origin, Required – Meaning, Optional
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Discussions about the meaning of life or the reason for our existence both intrigue and infuriate me. This blessedly short NPR article is the latest thing I have read on this: http://www.npr.org/blogs/13.7/2014/08/13/340073029/we-dont-need-to-be-created-to-be-relevant/ To me, we don't even need to be "relevant." Everything about this discussion was invented by humans, even the very ideas of meaning and relevance! Science is the most effective system we have for making sense of the universe. As best science can determine so far, life started somehow, some 3.5 billion years ago, and evolution took it from there. This long process has produced many results, one of which is us, a form of life able to examine its own mechanisms and origins and to define things like intelligence, purpose, love, and even "importance" that some of us who are not still fully occupied with survival may try to connect. There are plausible explanations for the tendency to impose upon or find structure in things we observe, to seek connections and cause/effect chains. Our ancestors who were good at these things were more successful in finding food, avoiding predators, and reproducing than their less intelligent colleagues. And for all but the last 10,000 years or so, basic ...

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