THREE ESSAYS ON THE MEANING OF LIFE
You cannot swim for new horizons until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.
- William Faulkner
Many in the West find themselves swimming in a sea of meaninglessness.
Some are enjoying the swim – free of the strictures of religion and notions of Divine judgement and eternal punishment; free of belief in Absolute right and wrong; riding relativist “t” truths on waves of materialism – observably having the time of their short lives.
However too many, equally observably, are not going so swimmingly – but find themselves floundering – evidenced by the West’s endemic drug and alcohol problems, and our high suicide rate. According to World Health Organisation figures of 2016, Europe, which includes Russia for WHO purposes, is the most suicidal region in the world at 15.4 per 100,000 (the Eastern Mediterranean being the lowest at 3.9 per 100,000). In most Western countries the suicide rate is higher than the road toll.
So many drown because, when they find themselves floundering, they also find their sea of meaninglessness is bound by two hostile shores – neither offering any safe landing from their predicament. These are the shores of two opposing lands, one hosting the House of God, the other the House of Disbelief – the first House is “hostile” to life having any credible meaning because it is home to an incredible, human “g” god (the male, brutal, Abrahamic god of the ancient Hebrews) and home to an equally incredible meaning and purpose of life (a once-only test for an eternity in either heaven or hell) – the second House is “hostile” to any credible meaning and purpose to life because it denies both outright (and the existence of any God or of any Agency higher than chance).
Before too many more of us drown in our steadily deepening sea of meaninglessness, perhaps it is time to take the challenge expressed in Faulkner’s above quote – and muster the courage necessary to “swim for new horizons” – beyond sight of our present hopeless shores?
This work of three essays and a conclusion will attempt just that. The first essay examines the House of God and the second examines the House of Disbelief – for any “T” Truths that they may have – then the third essay will attempt to swim beyond sight of their shores for new horizons to explore.
Those who feel they are close to drowning should skip the essays and paddle straight to the conclusion, wherein they may find some hope? If unconvinced, then they are sentenced to read the essays which contain arguments from evidence for that conclusion.