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Why do we exist? Or does it really matter?

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    Why do we exist? Or does it really matter?

    Greetings everyone,

    I came across this web site not too long ago, and as you've probably noticed, my name is fairly new. After going through some of the forums on this site, i've seen many interesting conversations - threads discussing several topics with numerous answers, given to various questions and concerns.

    This has also raised a question, that i would like to ask everyone. What do you think the purpose of life is? I mean, being here on earth, is there a reason why we might be here? Or are we just here for no particular reason - by chance or something?

    It would be nice to hear everyones views, and all responses are more than welcome.

    I am not responsible for my existence. So I need not answer the question. Maybe I should ask my parents.



      What is Life?
      Life is a cereal.

      Humor aside my friend, you asked a question which could unfold an unlimited number of point of views presenting different school of thoughts. It could be answered in a religious way, or philosophical or poetic or scientific or GKW ways. And no matter what the answer would be, the question would remain the same (and pretty much, unanswered). Are we an accident or a creation?

      I am not a scholar, yet I feel comfortable to share my knowledge about this matter with you as I gained it from self educating myself (still a student and definitely not a master of this subject) . Please bare with me.

      I don't know if you are aware of the "Principle of Uncertainty". This principle is a major break through in the world of physics and considered to be one of the foundation stones of a branch of Physics, known as Quantum Physics.

      Quantum physics deals with the sub-atomic particles and the principle states that one cannot observe the position and speed of a sub atomic particle at the same time. In actuality, what quantum physics tells us that sub atomic particles lives in a partial stage of existence and non-existence and come to the stage of full existence only if someone decided to observe that particle. What this theory is telling us that a particle exist only if somebody is observing it, i.e. the existence is dependent of observation. Kind of like a weird idea but very true. This whole observation/existence dependability is very well put by a scientist with the name of Shrodinger who fabricated a mind experiment of a cat closed in chamber in front of a deadly gun which could go off if a radioactive element emits a particle and there is 50-50% chance of happening that. If you want to know more about "Shrodinger's cat", you can read any popular book available at your local book store on quantum physics.

      Anyhoo, there is another principle which is gaining popularity among cosmologist and metaphysicists, now a days. It is called Antropic Principle which is, a kind of, carry over of the uncertainty Principle. This principle goes in a form of question and answer.

      Q: Why is the universe the way it is?
      A: The universe is the way it is so it could support an intelligent life form who could observe the universe and asked this question.

      Again, this principle tells us that there is no such thing or concept as an un-observable universe (or a universe without an intelligent life form who could observe it). Such universe simply cannot exist.

      So, to answer your question (from metaphysics point of view), our existence is required for this universe to exist. Our being here is certainly not an accident. We are part of a Master Plan. But now the big question comes. Why this Universe, then? But as you did not ask that question, I am not going to answer that (how about that to hide my ignorance).


      The prince who is otherwise known as TLK


        Thats a million dollar question (actually I don't think you could put a monetary value on the answer to that question), I wished I knew, life would be so much easier.


          Very Very interesting question, but do you think anyone of us can answer this, no, i don't think so. But i think the Lord, the God can surely answer this question, because after all He created us.

          Allah SWT, our Creator, our Lord says in Quran (the holy book of Muslims) that :

          I have not created jinn (ghosts) and ins (human beings) BUT to worship Me.

          That is, our purpose of life is to worship our Lord. The worship includes obeying Him and submitting to Him completely and that is what the meaning of Islam is "Submission". You submit all your desires and wills to your Lord and live a life the way He wishes.

          Please read a topic in religious affairs about Cat Steven now Yusuf Ali who reverted to Islam.

          I hope this may answer your questions.


            Some interesting ideologies here, each one differing with the next. Surely, they can't all be correct?

            Oh, and thanks Abdulla for referring me to the religious affairs forum. I did indeed read the experience of Cat Stevens, it was interesting. But why did his brother not become a muslim also?

            Tariq khan, that scientific explanation was impressive ... but how do you prove it? It was an explantion without proof.

            So let me see, i got 4 responses (and was hoping for a lot more, to be honest): 1 didn't seem to care; 1 gave a physics explanation; 1 wished he knew and perhaps the answer would come to him?; and 1 gave a religious explanation.

            Although the Jews have their own little doctorine, when you ask Christians and Muslims this question, many of them are baffled themselves, and don't know the answer, although they try and put an explanation forward. This is why so many are turning away from religion, and science cannot prove what it cannot experimentally grasp.

            But the reason why i put this question forward was because Muslims believe they have the answer, but i guess i was wrong, they seem as lost as everyone else.

            Perhaps the hindus know.


              John - You seem to have a hidden agenda here, especially when you posted this topic. What are you hoping to achieve?

              Abdulla - I agree with the objective you've posted, and alhamdullilah this is a clear and defined objective for us.

              [This message has been edited by Special2 (edited February 10, 1999).]


                John.. if you want to know a 'Hindu' answer, this is a wrong forum to visit. There are not many Hindus or ones who have studied Hinduism here, I believe.

                But though I am no scholar or follower of Buddhism, I know one story from Buddha's life. An intellectual goes and meets Buddha. He asks "What is soul?" Buddha keeps mum. He asks "Is their God" Buddha keeps smiling and does not answer. He asks "Is there life after death?" Now Buddha says "My friend, the questions you are asking are not YOUR questions. They are the questions which have come to your mind since you have read certain set of books. If you read different set of books, you would have asked different questions. Ask the questions that come from within and not the ones that come from reading. Come with me for an year. If after an year you have the same questions, I will answer them." An year passes. Buddha asks the itellectual "Any questions?" He keeps mum.



                  I dont understand this. why are we always suspicious of others. There is nothing wrong with John's post and i do not see any 'hidden agenda' behind it. He didnt get an answer from us so may be its not a bad idea for him to find the answer elsewhere. And John we the muslims look at life in a religious way and thats what brother Abdulla has tried to explain. I think u'll agree that we are not here by an accident. God created us for a purpose. May be that was to worship him than one thinks that he had jinns/angels to worship why us? They do not have a choice but we do. We are here free to live our lives the way we want to. May be its a test He has given us intellect and different choices so its upto us.
                  No one really has an answer to this question.


                    I'm sorry if i offended anybody. I merely wanted to know what Muslims believed as being the purpose of our existence. I received 4 responses prior to my earlier posting, and 4 diffeerent answers, while perhaps the answers should have been somewhat similar, as you all belong to one religion. Although i must admit Abdulla's answer was interesting. Maybe not all the Pakistanis on here are Muslims - perhaps i was being a little presumptuous.


                    thanks for being understanding. You also seem a little confused over the purpose of life, and why we're here, but at the same time you agree with Abdulla. Where does the confusion lie?
                    By the way, what is a jinn?



                      Answer to your question is clearly being given in Holy Quraan. I have read a number of books on "Existence" while studying "Management of Technological Change" and "Organizational Theory and Design" but I did not get any satisfactory answer to above question. Perhaps it is only the Holy Quraan which gives you a complete answer.

                      According to Quraan the purpose of life is:-

                      1)True and sincere faith in God. Faith is not merely a matter of words. We must realize the presence and goodness of God.

                      2)We must be prepared to show it in deeds of charity to our fellow-men

                      3)We must be good citizens, supporting social organizations

                      4)Our own individual soul must firm and unshaken in all circumstances.

                      5)This life is an interlude, a preparation for the real Life, which is the Hereafter. This world's vanities are therefore to be taken for what they are worth. They should not be allowed to deflect our minds from the requirements of the inner life(spirituality) that really matters.

                      All there are interconnected, and yet can be viewed separately.


                      FARID M

                      [This message has been edited by Farid (edited February 11, 1999).]



                        You are quite right being presumtious that you would find all Pakistanis Muslims. It is an official Pakistani forum but it does not mean that we all Pakistanis are indeed Muslims or even if we are we are not good ones.

                        Well if you so far are not convinced of a Muslims's reponse of our existance and purpose. Then reply to me of the following:

                        1: do you look after your parents
                        2: are you a good neighbour
                        3: do you donate money to help the poors
                        4: do you keep away from adultry
                        If reply to all the above questions is yes, then all you have to do is to stop eating swine and drinking alcohol and you are almost Muslim.

                        Once you recite ooath with Allah then you will become agood Muslim and onec you do that, you will find out the purpose of your existance and having read Quran you will comprehend all the answers to your questions.

                        [This message has been edited by s malik (edited February 12, 1999).]



                          I appreciate your response mate. I sort of also agree with some of it. But if you believe that is the purpose of life, why is it that when you ask muslims this question, they give me so many answers, or they're confused? Anyway, it's okay, you don't have to answer that question if you don't want to.

                          s malik,

                          You're not a good muslim? Do you speak on behalf of everyone when you say that?

                          The criteria that you listed, is that really all you require to bacome a good muslim? Surely, there must be more to it than just this. I've also known muslims who drink alcohol and fornicate. And if I understand correctly, muslims are also not allowed to earn interest. Does it mean such muslims are no longer muslims?

                          Another question I would like to ask, if you don't mind me asking - will all muslims go to Paradise?



                            Nice topic.
                            It is difficult to keep this from getting too religious.

                            You guys make the decision how the thread will go and if it needs to be moved. HINT



                              The confusion is that we are not clearly told the purpose of life but, we have to find the purpose ourselves. Worship is one of the basic purposes.Just praying to God is not the only kind of worship. Every good deed we do in this world is infact worship to God.

                              I dont think all muslims will go to paradise. No this will be unfair.

                              [This message has been edited by zainab (edited February 12, 1999).]