Google Answers Logo
View Question
Q: The meaning of life ( Answered,   9 Comments )
Subject: The meaning of life
Category: Reference, Education and News > General Reference
Asked by: tafora-ga
List Price: $4.00
Posted: 22 Apr 2002 01:55 PDT
Expires: 22 Apr 2003 05:20 PDT
Question ID: 2573
What's the meaning of life?
Subject: Re: The meaning of life
Answered By: katwoman-ga on 22 Apr 2002 09:36 PDT
Hi tafora,

It seems that you've already had a lot of responses to a question that many of 
us ask ourselves quite often.

I'll preface my answer by saying that there's no universally agreed upon 
answer. As many people have stated in the comments section below, you'll have 
to find the correct answer (if there is one) yourself – using your own personal 
interpretation and belief system.

According to The Meaning of Life Depot quote of the moment:

"The answers to life's questions lie inside you. All you need to do is look, 
listen, and trust."

Fortunately, people have asked about the meaning of life so often that there 
are lots of online resources available to help you find an answer. 

I'd suggest looking at the sites listed on Google and Yahoo!'s Personal 
Philosophy and Meaning of Life categories.

Here are some of my favorites:

What is "your" meaning of life, by Giada
Take this test to find out what's most important in your life and what it all 

The Meaning of Life (or, What's it all about?)
The site offers some "pre-meaning of life" advice (i.e: If you're questioning 
the meaning of life because you've been unhappy and depressed a good bit, click 
here.) and a lot of "post" meaning of life advice

Principia Cyberetica Web
Gives a very succinct (and surprising) answer to the meaning of life

Laws of Wisdom
A lawyer's take on the meaning of life

Soon You Will Understand…The Meaning of Life
Forty-four chapters of advice, philosophy and poetry

I hope those links will help you find the answer you seek. I'll leave you with 
this quote from author and psychiatrist Viktor E. Frankl:
"Ultimately, man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, but rather 
must recognize that it is he who is asked. In a word, each man is questioned by 
life; and he can only answer to life by answering for his own life; to life he 
can only respond by being responsible."
I used the search term:
what is the meaning of life
on Google and Yahoo!  

Subject: Re: The meaning of life
From: olav-ga on 22 Apr 2002 02:18 PDT
That's only for you to find out.

There are a lot of philosofical/religious movements, and they all say different 

Things that clearly contradict. Even 2500 years ago, people were asking this 
question. Nowadays, our ideas are still funded on this ancient ideas.

As you can understand: there is no clear answer. You have to find it out for 
your self. Maybe you should read an introduction to filosophy. that will help 
you to investigate the different ideas about life, and how other people looked 
at it.

Good luck.
Subject: Re: The meaning of life
From: professor-ga on 22 Apr 2002 02:31 PDT
Subject: Re: The meaning of life
From: bookface-ga on 22 Apr 2002 02:47 PDT
42. Minus the universe and everything.

As the poster before me said, there are many different answers.

I rather like the answer Robert Fulghum presents in his book, "All I Really 
Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten," which is excerpted here:
(though a paragraph at the end is added to put it in a religous context I don't 

But I personally believe that the meaning of life lies in hope. There is a 
limited amount of beauty and goodness and pleasure, and a limited amount of the 
opposite, ugliness and evil and pain, and the hope is that the first group will 
outweigh the latter in yours, because your existence and even all possible 
effects of your existence can only carry so far through time and space. So our 
mission, so to speak, is to increase our happiness and the happiness of those 
around us, and our redemption from pain comes through hope that the balance 
will tilt in our favor again at some point in our future. 

I think if at any point I can be *completely* positive that my future will be 
more painful than pleasurable, taking into account the fact that humans try and 
find joy even under the worst conditions, taking into account a weighted 
balance in that some forms of joy and some of pain can stretch farther than 
most, then it is time to give up on life.

That being said, I don't think you should limit yourself to my specific answer; 
the meaning of life, as Arthur A. Brown explains here:
is a rich tapestry with much subtlety that cannot be simplified or reduced to a 
single answer. The meaning of life is also to struggle, to fight against the 
odds, to adapt, to try to eternally preserve oneself. The meaning of life is 
also to devote oneself to bringing good to the world, through charaties and 

The meaning of life is the quest for the meaning of life.

Subject: Re: The meaning of life
From: sausage-ga on 22 Apr 2002 04:48 PDT
But bookface: what is the meaning of that search for the meaning of life? In 
the end, you'll find that there isn't any meaning, unless you search it in 
religion. Life is just a coincidence that developed in the beginning 
of ‘everything’. A very nice coincidence and a very complicated coincidence; 
but that doesn’t make it valuable. In my opinion, there is only meaning ‘in’ 
life: you can ‘mean’ something for you neighbor, for your country, for 
science, but in the end life has no value. If life didn’t exist, Earth would 
still be here and circle around the sun. If life didn’t exist, the universe 
would still be here. ‘Everything’ doesn’t revolve around life; life revolves 
around ‘everything’.

I think that the above can be read as a summary of Nietzsche’s view on ‘the 
meaning of life’. More on Nietzsche:,_Frie

Hope my English is clear enough - I’m not a native speaker and philosophical 
talk isn’t the easiest thing to write about.
Subject: Re: The meaning of life
From: kgbow-ga on 22 Apr 2002 05:35 PDT
I believe we have been given bodies (physical life) so that we can explore and 
physically  experience such things as sight, smell, sound, touch, love, hate, 
etc. It is evolution, the more we experience the more we learn, the more we 
Subject: Re: The meaning of life
From: aggh-ga on 22 Apr 2002 07:21 PDT
There are a number of schools of thought. Here are a few quick illustrative

The monotheist view : We (humans) were created by a god, and the meaning of life
is to serve said god. Jews, Christians and Muslims (followers of Islam) adhere
to this view, as do goddess-centric neo-wiccan and neo-pagan religions.

A variation on this theme is that we are all aspects of a god, splintered off
and taken human form. The meaning of life is to regain unity with said god. Some
forms of Hinduism and many systems of magic(k) hold this view.

The Buddhist view is not so much that there is a meaning to life, but that there
is in fact no meaning. Enlightenment comes in accepting this fact and thus
releasing oneself from the endless frustrations and suffering that the quest for
meaning can bring. Scientology's aims are similar.

The Darwinist outlook is more stark, saying there is no meaning at all. We are
born, we live, we die. The only meaning is found in simply trying to survive
long enough to reproduce.

Add to this the many philosophical schools. People to look up include John
Stuart Mill, Hobbes, Nietzsche, Marx, Rousseau, to name but a handful.

This question is worth a lot more than $4!
Subject: Re: The meaning of life
From: jms-ga on 22 Apr 2002 10:43 PDT
The only meaning of live is to populate your DNA. You have to get children which
have  partly your DNA and you have to help them to grow up and get children again.
All other strategies or meanings of life will not survive.

Subject: Re: The meaning of life - Check this website for the meaning of life
From: tom136-ga on 08 Feb 2003 14:15 PST
Please, consider this webpage. It shows what I think it's the meaning
of life. It is certainly the meaning of life for me and my wife.

Subject: Re: The meaning of life
From: isorg-ga on 27 Apr 2003 11:29 PDT

Important Disclaimer: Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Google does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully the Google Answers Terms of Service.

If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by emailing us at with the question ID listed above. Thank you.
Search Google Answers for
Google Answers  

Google Home - Answers FAQ - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy