TED Conversations

Albert Fuglsang-Madsen

This conversation is closed. Start a new conversation
or join one »

The purpose of life?

At some point I think we all realise that life is created from the same building blocks. That your brain, your nerves, veins and blood all consist of atoms and quarks. And at some point in time, quarks binded together forming specifik particles, which again grouped up to become molecules of different sizes. These different particles fell randomly together and created masses of different types; liquids, solids, gasses etc.

But at some point, these atoms (randomly?) formed a chlorophyl molecule that could absorb other particles, and use them to grow. They could integrate particles in their "group" of particles, and let out a smaller amount than the absorbed. But is this some sort of "will" of particles? If what they wanted was to gather in bigger and bigger clumps, why would life as we know it be created? If atoms at some point created a blue print, and at the same time some atoms randomly formed a ribosome, and it turned out that the ribosome for some reason was randomly created in the way that it could read the blueprint, and gather the nucleotides neccesary to build what the plan explained - Why would these systems start working together? What was their purpose of working together?

Biologists usually tell us that the reason life is here is to reproduced, but that is the purpose of ANIMALS and all other creatures able to reproduce. What's the purpose of atoms? And why did they chose to work together in a system? What's in it for them? These systems that keep running in endless cycles, were they just created by randomness?

It's funny to think about that one of the part achievements of life was the creation of a mind being able to reflect on its own existence.

Afterall, I believe whatever this will of atoms is, that is truly divine. That's why everything exists. Maybe God is just chance? A natural, automatical balance of life that prevents some existences to fill more than others?


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • Apr 11 2013: I believe the purpose of life is to find meaning in it. Ask yourself, what is it that keeps me going day in and day out, through the good and the bad? In other words, what keeps you from just giving up? This could be because of friends and family, your job, your desires, anything. In this way, the purpose of life could be different for everyone. As the saying goes, "Life is what you make it."
    • thumb
      Apr 12 2013: Yes, I agree that the purpose of each individual is finding their own meaning. But what I wanted to know is why life existed, and why atoms went together to form molecules -- What is their purpose? Why did they do it? Was it just at random?
      • Apr 12 2013: In response to that, as many others have undoubtedly stated, the sobering conclusion brought to us by science is that all of it just happened to be random chance. A statistical analysis of the universe shows that something is more likely to occur than to not occur.

        However, I have taken theories of consciousness courses for my major and in them, an alternative hypothesis has occasionally been proposed which I would like to share for this discussion. It is a pretty fringe theory for a lot of people so I am going to attempt to be as cautious as I can with my semantics and explain it as simply as I can.

        The elementary particles, stars, galaxies, and life all came together as a sort of evolutionary product of consciousness with the purpose of allowing the entire universe to observe itself. This is much like our own subjective experience only on a much grander scale (with which our own subjectivity is a part of). A sort of universal consciousness if you will.
        • thumb
          Apr 12 2013: Interesting theory Paul, and I think I've read something about it. I believe in a universal consciousness, and I cannot even begin to understand or explain it, although I am intrigued by the idea.....thanks:>)

          I totally agree with you that "life is what you make it"

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.