what is life?

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Offline shibli

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what is life?
« on: October 30, 2012, 01:07:09 PM »
Life is a Tale Told by an Idiot

What is the meaning of life? Why are we here? Does life signify anything, does it have a purpose? I don't know if I can answer these questions, and I don't know if I should even try. For the past few years I have been drinking the opium of apathy, finding strength in ignorance, in order to avoid these questions that drag me towards insanity. When I do face up to these, the most vital questions pertaining to the human race, I invariably come to the conclusion that life is pointless, without purpose or meaning, a stupid story without a theme or moral, a tale told by an idiot, signifying nothing. These cannot be safe thoughts.

Down through the ages philosophers have come to their own conclusions on the meaning of life. Some ideas are corny, some stupid, some contain a glimpse of truth, but, most importantly, none seem to agree with each other. Plato thought life just a shadow of the world of "Ideas", of "Forums". His teacher, Socrates believed that the only purpose in life was to be happy, by doing one's duty and finding the "greatest good". The Epicureans said that we must find "The Golden Mean", a perfect balance, in order to give our lives meaning. The Stoics solemnly frowned on their comfort, preferring to toil labouriously and to endure hardship. Christian religion went for the easy answer, claiming that the reason we should do good is not because of meaning or purpose in this life, but because we must work to enter the Kingdom of God. Meanwhile, Eastern religions such as Hinduism were preaching that the reason for our existence is to climb the ladder to perfect oneness with God, and that we will be continually re-incarnated until we reach that ideal. All these theories are trying to lead us to a similar conclusion, namely that life is not a tale told by an idiot, that it is not just there, but has a purpose, a meaning and a logic to it.

But personally, I can't find any such meaning to life, any reason for being, any answer to the question posed by existence. Education has been the substance of my existence so far. But what has been the point of it all? To be filled full with facts in order to vomit them back up again in the Leaving Cert? Is this what I endured those months of classes for, classes that seemed to last hours, days, months, a constant whirling roundabout with me as the dizzy passenger shackled to the centre, learning nothing but the word "eternity". Not even on a shallow level can I find any real meaning to this façet of my life. It all seems so illogical, irrelevant and purposeless.

When I look at the world around me this view is backed up by a multitude of idiotic examples. The history of the world is a history of famine, war and death. The lives of those that died in the crusades, in the Napoleonic wars, the Boer war, the Crimean war, World War I, World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam, Northern Ireland, Bosnia, and Rwanda were hardly stories told by a sage, and that list is only a scattered collection of a few examples of all the wars in the past thousand years. Neither can I find any point to the lives of those that died because of a famine in Ireland, in Somalia, in Ethiopia, and in many other countries, especially when I consider the wealth and comfort of others who stuffed themselves full of food and fed their dogs while these people starved.

Think of the typical life of a person living in the Western world at the moment. They are born, are educated, get a job, find a partner, have a family, make enough money to stave off discomfort, live the constant struggle of existence, get old, weak and sad, and then die. It makes as a much sense as Eamon Dunphy's weekly column in the "Sunday Independent". Mrs. Gradgrind in "Hard Times". I cried in reading the chapter in which she died. There was no point to her life. It was nothing more than a waste of good air (which was scarce due to the pollution of the time). But it was not her plight that coaxed the tears from my eyes. What really depressed me was that her plight echoes the so many wasted lives.

Man killing man; people starving while others watch; rape, bigotry, death: It all seems so illogical, so pointless. Life must be "a tale told by an idiot, signifying nothing" but the complete stupidity of existence itself. Therefore we need to create artificial meaning to prop up our petty lives. We depend on religion, "the opium of the people", which answers our questions by referring to another world that may or may not exist, but provides a reason for being. Some people survive through apathy and conformity, following the herd, drifting along in a state of semi-somnambulance, not asking these questions, donating an artificial meaning to life and sometimes giving an escape route from this idiotic "tale". Suicide is the most emphatic statement of life's pointless meaningless, illogical irrelevancy. The reason it is not embraced is the few survival tactics I have just listed, as well as, the instinct for self-preservation which is an enormous driving force in all of us.

The only purpose of existence left is life for life's sake, accepting that we exist and that therefore we ought to make the most of it, seize the day, reach for the stars, eat the peach and all those other clichés teenage essay-writers are so fond of. We must ignore the fact that when we are dead nothing will ever have mattered (a theory beyond my powers of explanation implied by the belief of philosophers that existence is a subjective thing, with reality residing in our individual minds). It is vital, for our own mental stability and sanity, that we read a meaning into "the tale told by an idiot". We must invent a moral, a theme, if none already exists.

Socrates said that "the unexamined life is not worth living". This may be true, but be very careful, because the over-examined life will also be found to be devoid of meaning, and not worth living either.

Source: http://homepage.tinet.ie/~splash/life.html
Those who worship the natural elements enter darkness (Air, Water, Fire, etc.). Those who worship sambhuti sink deeper in darkness. [Yajurveda 40:9]; Sambhuti means created things, for example table, chair, idol, etc.

Offline shibli

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Re: what is life?
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2012, 02:10:36 PM »
Everyone lives inside his brain throughout his life, and can in no way ever step out of it. Perceptions related to every illusion we see, every sound we hear, every object we touch and everything we taste are the perceptions that electrical signals form in our brain. We can never make direct contact with the original of any illusion we see, any sound we hear or the fruit we taste outside our brains. Throughout our lives, we watch perceptions formed in our brains.

     For instance, someone who travels in a plane, crossing over oceans, actually travels between images formed in his brain. The image and noise of the airport, the announcements made to the passengers, the noise of the engines, the sensation produced by a plane taxiing on a runaway, clouds, the image of the city left behind, the oceans, the sense of distance, the hardness of the seats, the texture of its fabric.... All of these are perceived in the tiny visual center in the brain.

     The sense of distance formed in that center, which is only a few inches in size, on the other hand, is a great miracle created by the Almighty. Within such images created in such a small area, God also creates a sense of distance, perceived as if one's destination were miles away. Someone looking at the ocean from a plane window actually watches it in his brain from the plane in his mind. The distance between the two, on the other hand, is a perception the Almighty creates in the human being who lives within his brain.

     At this point, we encounter another important fact: The consciousness that sees the ocean miles below, hears the noise of the engine or feels the hardness of the seat does not consist of the cells or nerves in the brain.

     Who does perceive these sensations, then? The answer to this question, which materialists cannot answer, is the soul the Almighty creates. It is our soul that experiences all these sensations.

     You must also have a better understanding of this glorious and unprecedented artistry, this infinite wisdom in Almighty's creation and draw the appropriate conclusions from this miracle of creation.

     Have they not reflected within themselves? Allah did not create the heavens and the earth and everything between them except with truth and for a fixed term. Yet many people reject the meeting with their Lord. (Al Quran-30:08)
« Last Edit: October 30, 2012, 02:13:30 PM by shibli »
Those who worship the natural elements enter darkness (Air, Water, Fire, etc.). Those who worship sambhuti sink deeper in darkness. [Yajurveda 40:9]; Sambhuti means created things, for example table, chair, idol, etc.

Offline saratasneem

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Re: what is life?
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2012, 05:17:15 PM »
Life is like a station where passengers are waiting for a train.

Offline shan_chydiu

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Re: what is life?
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2012, 04:00:11 PM »
Life can make anything happen to you. I think the purpose of life is to discover what makes you happy, and then go do more of it. 
Shanjida Chowdhury

Offline Shah - Al - Mamun

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Re: what is life?
« Reply #4 on: December 24, 2012, 09:30:41 AM »
This is what I think of life:

Dimensions of Life
(Khondker Mohammad Shah - Al - Mamun)

Life? Easy or Hard?
Simple or Harsh?
Look arround yourself...
Look into yourself...

Do you feel it?
Can you see the sky?
The birds that fly?
The trees, the air and breeze?
The calm sound of rivers?
The roar of the sea?
The emptyness of the dessert?
The light and the dark?
The success and failure?
Hope and Despair?
All those little prayers to the god?
The burning will of destiny?

Go close to the strong and to the weak
The happy and the sad
The rich and the poor
Talk and observe
Do you get it?

The differences in the paths they take?
And all the possibilities that lies within?
All the dimensions shattered arround?

Can you feel the relations that you have?
Cares and love of the loved ones?
Hates of the hated one?

Can you feel that someone's waiting for you?
Someone who will laugh and cry with you?

Can you see all the eyes that observe you?
All that knowledge that guide you?
All that wisdom that build you?
All those dreams that drive you?
All those desires that thirst you?
All those tastes that satisfy you?

Ever felt the mysteries of the night sky?
Filled with stars and mist?
This and the galaxies beyond?

Life? Its all these...
And you can still go on like this.
But know that in the end,
Its upto you to select...
the version of life you want.

Offline Mustafizur rRhman

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Re: what is life?
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2013, 01:22:12 PM »
Think simple, things become simple.

Offline 710001983

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Re: what is life?
« Reply #6 on: July 18, 2018, 10:58:54 PM »
Tale told by Ideot,but very critically.
Md. Imdadul Haque
Senior Lecturer
Department of Public Health
Daffodil International University