No One Searches For Insignificance

Would you like for your life to be meaningless?  Of course not.  And you’re not alone.  No one searches for insignificance.  It is a universal human desire to find some sense of purpose in life.

If we were the mere product of materialistic evolution (as most science textbooks insist), why would any person want meaning?  There is no evolutionary reason why people should desire a sense of purpose.

Animals do fine without a need for significance.  However, humans flounder when they feel they have no purpose or significance.  Why is that?

There is no natural reason.  Therefore our need for meaning must be supernatural.  The human need for significance is proof of an intelligence that exists beyond nature that people for millennia have called God.

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About Steve Simms

I like to look and think outside the box. I have written two books: Mindrobics: How To Be Happy For The Rest Of Your Life and Your Sperm Won--Experiencing Your Value As A Championship Human Being. In college I encountered Jesus Christ and I have been passionate about trying to get to know Him better ever since. My wife and I lead a non-traditional church in Nashville based on open participation and Spirit-led sharing. We long to see the power and passion of the early church come to life in our time.
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11 Responses to No One Searches For Insignificance

  1. terry1954 says:

    i agree with you totally

  2. M. A. Melby says:

    How do you know that no animal has ever sought “meaning”? If animals do not seek meaning, does that mean that there is no evidence of their creation? (Just a thought.)

    Do all humans seek meaning? That seems odd since so many humans seek “nothingness” as a path to enlightenment – but then we’re just talking semantics so I’ll concede that humans tend to seek “meaning”.

    Don’t you think that a desire for meaning in one’s life is a survival characteristic? I really don’t understand how evolution (materialistic, theistic or otherwise) would deny meaning; a quest for meaning seems completely consistent with evolutionary models.

    If one seeks out what social role he or she is suited for, what actions will cement his or her identity, and ponder how he or she will fit in the scheme of things – I would think that would be a very good survival trait, a trait that would not be selected out, but be selected for.

    • Steve Simms says:

      Hey, M.A.: Thanks for the comments. There is a huge difference between animals and humans. (Even if you accept materialistic evolution as the sole source for the existence of animals, it fails to explain human consciousness and human intelligence.) Part of that difference is the search for meaning. I have heard atheists speak like the human craving for meaning is a threat to their position by denying the human need for meaning and even mocking it, Funny, if the desire for meaning is a survival trait, it appears to be one that is not needed by any other being on the planet except for people.

      • M. A. Melby says:

        I’m not sure which atheists you are referring to – but I suspect you may be misunderstanding or, well, they just suck. :)

        A search for meaning is not universally invalid. However, I think there are many valid criticisms that can be laid against how that search manifests itself and how it is exploited. I do not see a search for meaning that requires explanations for everything or figuring out the master plan – well – meaningful. I find peace in the idea that sometimes s*t happens; and letting go of my preconceived concepts of what *ought* to be the case in freeing (although you may articulate that as “giving it up to God” not “s*t happens”, and I confess that your way sounds more poetic).

        No, we don’t understand everything. Just because it is not understood does not mean that the supernatural is validated; nor does understanding mean that the supernatural is necessarily invalidated. (I wrote a post about that idea a while ago: http://sinmantyx.wordpress.com/2012/02/29/your-creator-is-not-a-shim/)

        I don’t concede that other mammals lack consciousness. I highly doubt that actually. I do not concede that there is a strong meaningful divide between humans and other mammals. We are animals. We are just really clever ones.

  3. M. A. Melby says:

    Also – science books do not insist on materialism. They do, however (at least outside of Texas – HA) describe the current scientific consensus regarding the models that appear to be most predictive and explain our observations best. Do not confuse methodological naturalism with philosophical naturalism/materialism.

  4. “humans flounder when they feel they have no purpose or significance” – that seems a perfectly good reason why we have evolved to have it. As highly social mammals, the relationships we have within and without our group are what give us purpose in life, that is what has brought us so far, in evolutionary terms. That animals do not need or have a purpose in life is mistaken, they do not have the ability to question their instincts but all animals act as though they have a purpose, otherwise they would not reproduce etc.

    • Steve Simms says:

      Humans nowadays clearly demonstrate that reproduction does not need a purpose. Our purpose has been to prevent reproduction and/or to destroy it before it comes to full term.

      • Birth control is used in modern societies to ensure the full development of all humans born, high birth rates are required in any species that has high infant mortality as most will not survive to adulthood. This became unnecessary as medical advances increased infant survival, thus birth control became necessary. If we were intelligently designed our bodies would not feel the need to copulate if we already had enough children.

      • M. A. Melby says:

        Well – the “natural” thing to happen would be for us to populate the earth until which time we exceed the holding capacity of the earth. Then we will experience a die-off. Unfortunately, it seems that we’ve become too successful and not only are we possibly pushing forward to an inevitable die-off event, we’re going to take a few ecosystems with us. A clever creature is going to see this trend and attempt to reach a nice equilibrium state under holding capacity to attempt to avoid suffering and continue to thrive.

        A greedy creature is going to use positive eugenics as a means to “win” some sort of “culture war”; regarding their children as a “quiver full” of weapons.

        Preventing unwanted pregnancy is not counter to survival. Continuing to populate exponentially is a threat to everything.

        Do not confuse that idea with not valuing children. If anything, I see forcing parenthood on those who are unwilling or ill-equip to be parents as devaluing a child. The one insisting that the pregnancy continue is using the pregnancy and possible child as a weapon and a punishment. That devalues children.

        I have two children myself. I don’t think I was devaluing them during the years I was using birth control.

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