Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

Patrick H
Gormley


THOUGHTS AND TIMES TO HELP STIR THE FEELING THAT YOUR WHOLE EXISTENCE HAS VALUE

It is the journey that matters not the goal!

You can work extremely hard to reach a goal. When you reach it you may not feel much. If you are overjoyed it will not last long. So why are goals so important to us until they happen? The answer is that there can be no journey without a goal and the journey is what matters.

There is no goal for the journey is what is important. It is the goal. There does not need to be an ultimate goal. We find that we get meaning in life from the mini-goals we set every day and which we reach. The idea that the ultimate goal is to be with God just downgrades that. It implies that we are bad in some way if we don't find contentment in the little daily goals we have. Being ordinary is better than being the emperor of the whole world! And if God is everywhere surely we shouldn't have a goal to be with God for we are with him now!

If you have a goal and reach it, you have to find a new goal to aim for. Why? Because it is more confident to focus on a new goal rather than on praising yourself and thinking about the goal you attained. Praise yourself indeed but do it properly. Do it by taking on a new challenge.

When you decide to do something, you have a final purpose in mind. But it does not follow that the final purpose is the only purpose or the one most important to you. The journey is part of the purpose as well. It makes the goal worthwhile. Though worthwhile in itself, the goal is made even more worthwhile by the journey.

Atheism and the Purpose of Life

The universe can act like it has a purpose for us and that is all that matters. And it does act like it has a plan. We do not need it to have a real purpose.

God making me does not mean my life has meaning for me. It only proves that he has a purpose. The meaning is about him.

If you feel your life has no meaning and your head says it has no meaning, then you may end up believing in God and saying God gives your life meaning. But that means your life STILL has no meaning. You need God to impose meaning on your life that it has not got. If a gem stone is not important there is nothing anybody can do to make it important. Only chance might do that - say if it belonged to Madonna or something. The notion of God giving your life intrinsic meaning is contradictory. If life is intrinsically important then it is important just because it is life regardless of God or anything else. The believer fears life and needs to believe in the impossible to relieve this fear and get the feeling that some magic is going to fix things for her. The sense of meaning found in God then is not really found in God but in a person trying to alter reality in her own head in order to free herself form its harshness and dangers.

If God makes me he has to impose meaning on my life meaning there is no real meaning. If anybody has to impose meaning on my life it should be me.

What if Iím an Accident?

Am I an accident or the product of pure chance? Am I a combination of matter and energy that just happened to make me a thinking and feeling person? Thinking alone will not make me important. Feeling does. If I am happy to be a being with feelings and what to go on being that being then what more meaning to life do I want? What else can I want?

I am here by chance. That fills me with happiness that I am so fortunate. I enjoy it for the same reason I enjoy winning a prize by chance instead of somebody planning for me to win.

We need the forces of chance. We have set up the universe to have some unpredictability. There is no room for people thinking, "Okay I will drive dangerously because if I die it will it will be something that is meant to be. Whatever happens is mapped out for you anyway." It is chance that takes our lives. We must not think that our beloved ones left us for a reason.

If we could control everything in life instantly would we want that? We would never be able to feel surprised! If there is a supernatural power or being controlling everything then things that are random only look random to us. They are not really random. If an all-powerful God existed or if this world was being manned by a god then he is in charge.

We need unpredictability. That is part of the challenge of life. Itís not evil or good. We just have to make the best of it. It is up to us.

If fate controlled all that happens, then fate is evil for it has brought evil on us. That is an unnecessary disturbing doctrine that we do not need.

If you are alive, be glad. If you need to believe that some god has intentionally given you life then there is something wrong. Be glad because you are alive and for no other reason. The sick person does not care how the medicine made her better. She is glad to be better.

Do not fear. Chance can bring you good things as well as things that are not so good. This does not mean that chance itself is not a blessing. It is. It cannot hurt us. Only our fearful attitude to it can.

It does not matter if we really are here for a reason or not. What matters is that whether we believe we are or we believe that life is without purpose we still feel there is a purpose. Acting as if life is random and you are here by luck can be a purpose. The beauty of contemplating this is that your feelings are the higher power. If you feel low you need to find the right buttons so that your emotions will stop hurting you and help you accept the situation and aim for better.

Religious people say that if we are here by accident then there is nobody to call on for help and we are on our own and life is purposeless. But needing somebody to help you means your life is not purposeless.

The purpose of life is permanently indestructible love and instead of being worried about my purpose in life I should worry about my life in relationship to others. It is about finding the purpose for us not just for me.

Does it matter?

Remember that the hatred in your heart, the anger, the apathy, the worry are simply harmful mental habits. You learned and developed them and so you can reverse this and be free of them. They all come from fear.

Why I am here does not matter. What matters is what I am going to do with the present moment to change my future.

If I receive a lovely gift, I should not ask why but just enjoy it. If I get on with life and donít think about why I have it, I will enjoy and the meaning issue will sort itself.

Even if there a God to give your life purpose, you have to give the purpose to yourself by accepting it.  So it is certain purpose starts with you.

Every moment has its own built in meaning. You have experienced it and nothing or no one can take it away from you. It is more valuable than all the gold in the universe. But what if it feels awful?

Meaning in life is about giving and receiving the feeling that life is valuable. You get it from being good to others and not from mere religious faith. The meaning of life is indefinable - you cannot get it by believing x or y or z. You can only do things that let but not cause it to bear fruit.

Religious meaning comes at a price!

A four year old is so much happier than an adult because the four year old has less to worry about. The adult starts off like a four year old and adds things that matter - a fancy car, Jesus, the Eucharist, the Church, looking better than everybody else etc. As I grew up, I created needs for myself. I created meaning. Meaning creates attachment. It is when I let go that I find happiness and peace. I may cling to religion and the things that give meaning to my life because I feel that what I have in life is impermanent. Isn't that a mistake? Clinging to them isn't going to make sure they stay around! It throws in stress and fear where I could be enjoying them.

The meanings of life not the meaning

There are lots of different things that will give your life meaning. Some claim that religion helps. Some exaggerate how important religion is in feeling their life matters. Many feel their lives are valuable and they have little or no time for religion.

We all need to feel our lives are important. It is our responsibility to find this sense of meaning for ourselves and as a member of a larger social collective. The responsibility then is more important than the meaning. We have to value it most.

Why you must not seek meaning

Meaning is best understood as something you don't create for yourself but something that will be found if you remove obstacles to it.

The less you look for meaning in life the better. The less you look, the less stress and tension and worry you impose on yourself. It is in trying to care less and less but love more and more that your life gets better and better. The sense of meaning in life happens to you. You have to make way for it. You cannot make it happen. You can be a hermit and can have the strongest faith in God imaginable and still feel your life has no meaning. Your life becomes important to you if you treat others as important to you.

I find meaning in life only by not looking too much for it! I - and I alone - make my own feeling that there is meaning in my life!

The meaning of life is something that happens to you when you just help others and stop worrying about it. Exercising self-disinterest gives you meaning in life. It is not God or religion or spirituality. Just help others more and it will sort itself.

It is odd that so many insist on the meaning of life when meaning is not as important as opportunities to get possible meaning not actual meaning.

If suffering does not do any good. Thus it has no purpose. Any good that appears happens because it is being resisted and dealt with. The most important thing about suffering is that you can improve yourself in wisdom and strength in spite of it.

Start off with programming your inner mind to draw small blessings until you find your faith growing. Then you can ask for more daring favours!

If you feel bad, just accept that the feeling is there and don't condemn it!

If you feel bad, accept the feeling. Condemning it or the cause is only going to make you feel worse. Don't blame it on anybody else or on anything outside of you. God didn't make the bad feelings for he doesn't exist. It is your making. Seeing that dramatically lessens the power of feeling crap. If external mystical forces are hurting you then they can do it again and you can't stop them. But if the bad feeling is your making you know that it can be pulled into line and you can feel better even terrific!

When you pray for the conversion or well-being of an enemy or somebody you hate, you may begin to feel more positive towards them. But it is not prayer that is helping the situation but trying to think of them in a better way.