An Assembly of Pieces

James Anderson Merritt's piecemeal thoughts and observations, and the occasional attempt to put some of the pieces together.
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All material except cited quotations Copyright (C) 2004-2008 by James Anderson Merritt. All rights reserved.
Wednesday, February 16, 2005

I haven't posted in a while, despite racking up a lot of material; there's been too much to do and not enough time to sleep or hang out with the family. Today, on the Santa Cruz Sentinel message board, a new thread appeared. It was entitled, "What is the Purpose of Life (Or Is There One)?" I have adapted the following from my posting in that thread:

Purpose comes from intention. Intention can come from a creator or provider, but also from an employer. It may be that the intention of an employer is even more important than that of a creator. Consider: The creator of an open-end wrench may have intended it to turn hex nuts, but say somebody comes along, picks it up, and uses it to pound a nail. The wrench is none the worse for wear, the nail is pounded, and the user is happy he didn't have to find or buy a hammer. So what is the purpose of the wrench? That of the manufacturer, or the one, to which the user has happily and successfully put it?

In my experience, there are two broad classes of human beings: those who believe that humanity has a creator, and who seek to live according to the creator's purpose for our species (or even the individual purposes for their respective lives); and those who, finding no unambiguous evidence of either a creator or a special purpose for humans or themselves, must supply their own purposes (as employers of their own lives) or remain aimless.

For me, the question of this thread comes down to: Do you want to receive a purpose and honor it? Or generate a purpose and fulfill it? If, as a human being, a person truly has free will, then I think that must include the ability and responsibility to choose one's own purpose.

The purpose of each human life is up to the person living it. Another way I have heard that said: "Life is what you make it (so make it a good one)."

I think I'll go make a good day. Join me?


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