What Is the Meaning of Life? A Review of Related Beliefs

The Meaning of Life

What Is the Meaning of Life? A Review of Related Beliefs

The meaning of life, also referred to as the answer to the common question: “what is the meaning of life?” pertains to the meaning of life as whole, and not in a trivial or instrumental sense. Many other related queries include: “How will we know if we are alive?” or “How will we know if our life is worthwhile?”

Some philosophers believe that one of the answers to the above mentioned questions is the belief in a pre-determined purpose of human life. The philosophy of materialism says that the only purpose for human life is for pleasure. According to religious believers, however, life has a deeper purpose. According to many Christian and Islamic religions, the meaning of life is connected to an eternal afterlife. Belief in a pre-determined purpose of human life supports the idea that a person’s life is not for pleasure but for something much more: to have a quality of interaction with all other living things, to experience an intense sense of oneness, to help fellow humans, to be a part of the community or society, to be a witness to the divine truth, and to live a quality, meaningful, painless life.

If you ask most people the meaning of life, they will likely reply that it is happiness. However, another belief is that the purpose of human life is to experience pain. The answers to these questions are very personal and often dependent on personal beliefs and values. As each person experiences happiness and pain in their life, there are various belief systems which support the different answers and provide direction to find happiness and purpose in life.