Proud Member of the Reality-Based Community

(JavaScript Error)

linked to

Monday, January 02, 2006

Alone.. not so bad really

Via The Edge Annual Question — 2006


We are entirely alone

Living creatures capable of reflecting on their own existence are a one-off, freak accident, existing for one brief moment in the history of the universe. There may be life elsewhere in the universe, but it does not have self-reflective consciousness. There is no God; no Intelligent Designer; no higher purpose to our lives.

Personally, I have never found this possibility particularly troubling, but my experience has been that most people go to considerable lengths to convince themselves that it is otherwise.

I think that many people find the suggestion dangerous because they see it as leading to a life devoid of meaning or moral values. They see it as a suggestion full of despair, an idea that makes our lives seem pointless. I believe that the opposite is the case. As the product of that unique, freak accident, finding ourselves able to reflect on and enjoy our conscious existence, the very unlikeliness and uniqueness of our situation surely makes us highly appreciative of what we have. ...continue reading

(ht Sirk)