A recent comment to a post and of course I began to think about what the commenter was getting at. I think it’s true that many believe that there is nothing to look forward to in this life; that this life is just pain and misery and in order to make it less so, humans invented the supernatural. Gods. They needed a way to explain the seasons, natural disasters, sickness and plague. It became either a blessing or a curse from these gods.
So yes, I believe that humans created gods, not the other way around. They invented a god for everything in their world, including those that would give them victory over their enemies in battle. Our ancestors created rituals for the worship of these gods and passed down not only the belief but the rituals as well ,generation upon. I tend to think that people have always been people and while there were those true believers in our past, like there are today, there are those that are in the not-so-much crowd. I’m not referring to atheists, even though I think there were those in out past as well, but those people who had a less than spirtual connection with these gods.
Think about it. Until very recently, humans have been mostly agrarian. Families hunted as well as planted and harvested their own crops, working together for the survival of all. I’m certain there were people in the ancient past, as there are today, that would not want to give some god the credit for the hard work in maintaining the farm, or the success of a hunt. Lip service, yes, but not true believers. These people, as most today know, that if they sit around and do nothing, a god is not going to suddenly send them a steak dinner, warm clothes for the winter. They know it takes their labor for food, clothing, and shelter. I don’t think people in the past were thsat dum
So why is it we continue to hear, from some, that without god, there is no meaning to life? I would like to know what meaning god, any god, supplies to anyone that makes their life better. Mayber psychologically a person feels better because they believe some god is always watching over them, but do they feel the same way when they are laid off that good job, their house goes into foreclosure?Do they take the attitude of Job and give their god all the praise for all of their suffering? Maybe a few, but the vast majority?
We have an entire industry outside of religious belief that wants to teach you how to be happy, or something. Of course, what makes those people happy is all the idiots that buy their books, and go to their seminars. What makes one person happy, or content, may not for another. Instead of looking for someone else to give us meaning for our lives, why not do some introspection and discover it for yourself? It might surprise all of us to discover something about ourselves that we always knew, but never used. I don’t think we can find meaning from anyone but ourselves. We might be loking directly at it, right now, and had never realized what this actually was. because the entire meaning of life search seems a bit sappy.
Suffice to say that no one can tell anyone else what the meaning of life is, because it is going to be different, to a degree, for everyone. It’s certain, for me, that no god supplies any meaning for me. Think about that for a moment: A person so unhappy, dissatisfied with their life that they look forward to a better life, after this one, in some heaven. All they have to do to get there is follow the rules of that belief. Maybe. It seems in order to obtain that everlasting happiness, the rules vary depending. Christians have many different denominations and there are those that believe that their interpretation is the true one. So, those not in that denomination? It’s just a thought,
Christians are not the only ones. Look at any major religion and you’ll see pretty much the same thing. Muslims have been in conflict with each other for over a thousand years. Who’s right, who’s wrong? It hasn’t been resolved to date and most likely never will. The meaning of life won’t be solved by religion or by self-help hucksters. Stop depending on others to do the work for you.