I’m gonna talk a little bit about my approach to life, purpose, consciousness and lamps now. Basically, I unapologetically crashed a conversation about p-zombies, claiming I was one, and so was everybody else, which took me on a reductionist downward spiral. Now look at these two things people have told me within two hours in the same chat:
Now, if you wanna take anything away from this blog post, it’s this: being nihilist doesn’t mean you’re a suicidal angsty killjoy.
Now that we’ve got the TL;DR out of the way, welcome to me. I’m gonna make this step by step:
1) The Big Bang happened. Let’s not question that. It made a bunch of energy that shows itself up in real life as matter and whatnot. It happened. We have no evidence to consider a purpose for the Big Bang.
2) Cosmic bodies have risen out of gas and dust. There is no consciousness in gas and dust on its own so no purpose here either.
3) Life has spontaneously risen out of random interactions. It just happened that the Earth had the right chemical composition for the right carbon structures to form. Extremely low chance times absurdly high amount of trial and error equals an unlikely thing. Nucleic acids replicate by reacting with other molecules. Are they alive or conscious? No. They only seem to want to replicate because only those that can replicate form self-sustaining places with them. They’re p-zombies.
4) Bacteria and such little bastards happened out of some nucleic having evolutionary edge when compared to others. Do they have purpose or consciousness? No. They just happened to be created and procreated to be more of them. They seem to want to procreate but they don’t really feel it. They’re p-zombies.
5) Multi cell organisms happened.
Do they have purpose or consciousness? No. They just happened to be created and procreated to be more of them. They seem to want to procreate but they don’t really feel it. They’re p-zombies.
6) Intelligent animals capable of learning and advanced problem solving appeared. Do they have purpose or consciousness? No. They just happened to be created and procreated to be more of them. They seem to want to procreate but they don’t really feel it. They’re p-zombies.
I’m a heap of molecules that happens to be arranged in such a way it reacts to stimuli. You stab me and I act in a certain way. You poke a pencil and it rolls off the table. You pet a cat and it purrs. You press the switch on a lamp and it lights up. How come we put animals above non-organic things in something that’s nothing but pure causality? All of existence is a real crazy probability wave, possibly explainable by a theory of everything.
Purpose doesn’t exist, life doesn’t exist, consciousness doesn’t exist.
I mean why even bother, right? Each of us is a chemical reaction that thinks too highly of itself and is gonna eventually stop working in a hundred years anyway, so why bother living?
Now don’t drink that bleach quite yet.
I am a nihilist and I have come to all the above conclusions as rationally as I could. But, I mean, wouldn’t it be dull, to live only ever thinking about the pointlessness of everything?
That’s why I choose to believe in life, purpose, and consciousness. Because I wanna live life, I wanna experience things! That requires subjectivity and I can reach that subjectivity even if I acknowledge the futility of everything.
Oh, why stop at just the most basic illusions? I enjoy helping people, so I believe in the good of humanity to enhance that! And I wanna feel all there it is to life, why not do all the drugs there are to enjoy ‘fake’ emotions locked away from the average human’! And I wanna see all sorts of values in things, why shouldn’t I enjoy art with no practical value!
The underlying lack of meaning of everything only makes me enjoy everything more. I see the beauty in life, people, the human race, science, and art much clearer when I realize there’s no purpose that made it all what it is.
And I highly recommend it.
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