Atheism and the meaning of life

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In Japan, researchers found that Japanese children see the world as designed.[1] See: Atheism and children and Atheism and purpose

As far as atheism and the meaning of life, Avery Foley and Ken Ham wrote:

“Why am I here?” is a question that every human wants answered. We innately know that our lives have some kind of meaning. But where does it come from and what is it? Does atheism give the answer?

Well, some atheists will say the meaning of life is found in helping others or making humankind better. Now this seems admirable—after all, who doesn’t want to end world hunger, cure cancer, or clothe the orphaned?—until one asks, “Why?”

You see, in an atheistic worldview, we are animals headed for the grave, and our universe is spinning each day toward the end. Why does it matter if we help anyone? Why does it matter if we make humankind better? We will die, and they will die.[2]

Pew Research reports that 35% of American atheists often think about the meaning and purpose of life (see also: Atheism and purpose and Atheism and meaninglessness).[3]

As adults, children who attended religious services regularly are 47 percent more likely to have a high sense of mission and purpose.[4]

In December 2003, the University of Warwick reported:

Dr. Stephen Joseph, from the University of Warwick, said: "Religious people seem to have a greater purpose in life, which is why they are happier. Looking at the research evidence, it seems that those who celebrate the Christian meaning of Christmas are on the whole likely to be happier.[5]

Eric Lyons on atheism and the meaning of life

Richard Dawkins
Richard Dawkins declared "Christianity may actually be our best defence against aberrant forms of religion that threaten the world".[6][7] See also: Richard Dawkins and Islam

Eric Lyons wrote about atheism and the meaning of life:

I wonder how many casual atheists (and agnostics who teeter on the brink of atheism) have actually thought through the fact that atheism implies that life ultimately is meaningless. One of the world’s most celebrated atheistic, evolutionary writers of the late 20th and early 21st centuries, Dr. Richard Dawkins, confessed in a 1995 Scientific American article, “The Universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom…no purpose…nothing but pitiless indifference.” More recently, in September 2016, Graham Lawton, Executive Editor of New Scientist magazine, penned a one-page article titled, “What is the Meaning of Life?” What answer did this leading evolutionary agnostic give? Here was his heavy-hitting first line: “The harsh answer is ‘it has none.’” “Your life may feel like a big deal to you,” he wrote, “but it’s actually a random blip of matter and energy in an uncaring and impersonal universe.” Other than subjective feelings of meaning and importance, unbelief implies “we will never get objective data on the matter.” Atheism and agnosticism simply fail “to capture a ‘true’ or ‘higher’ meaning...

The best atheism can do is to ask people to choose for themselves what the meaning of human life is. But such meaning is entirely subjective. One person could just as easily conclude that the meaning of life is to reduce the population of human beings on Earth by any means possible in order to “save mother Earth,” as he could decide that the meaning of life is “to follow those impulses and instincts which are the strongest or which seem to him the best ones,” including having sexual relations with anyone, at anytime, anywhere. On the other hand, Christianity offers the world real, objective meaning. The Creator of mankind has informed us that we exist on Earth for the purpose of choosing (by the grace of God) where we want to live eternally (Matthew 7:13-14). As we prepare to meet our Maker (Ecclesiastes 12:7), He has instructed us to “[f]ear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all. For God will bring every work into judgment, including every secret thing, whether good or evil” (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14).[8]

William Lane Craig on atheism and the meaning of life

William Lane Craig declared about atheism and the meaning of life:

What we're asking here is not how atheists find meaning in life, which would be consistent with saying that life is objectively meaningless but somehow you've got to get through so how are you going to find some sort of meaning to your existence? Well, you'll invent projects that will bring you satisfaction and make you feel good and so forth, but that has nothing to do with whether or not life has an objective meaning or value of purpose...

She's misstated the problem, I think, to a degree. I agree with her that a certain kind of believer will argue that if God does not exist than ultimately there is no objective value to life or the universe. But they typically don't say, “What's the point of being kind or loving if one day you just die?” I think what they might say is “If you just die and there is no life beyond the grave then why not act for self-interest rather than act morally? Prudential reasons and moral reasons come into conflict on an atheistic view, and so why shouldn't you just act in your own self-interest?”

Alright, now that's important to pause at this moment and see what she admits here. She grants that if atheism is true then there is no objective purpose for our lives – and she lists some there – certainly it wouldn’t be to know God and have an eternal love relationship with him because he doesn't exist. So she concedes that on atheism there is no objective purpose to life.[9]

Videos: Atheism and the meaning of life - William Lane Craig

Bertrand Russell and the meaning of life

See: Bertrand Russell, atheism, agnosticism and pessimism

Apostle Paul on the meaning of life

The Apostle Paul wrote to Christians about the meaning of life: "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them." - Ephesians 2: 10 (NASB)

Rick Warren on the meaning of life in his book The Purpose Driven Life

Evangelical Christian pastor Rick Warren, wrote in his 60-million-copy bestseller The Purpose Driven Life: "You were made by God and for God, and until you understand that, life will never make sense."

Atheism and personhood

See: Atheism and personhood

See also

Notes