The Purpose of Life?

My mind is in a state of rambling and introspection today …

What, for most humans, is the purpose of life?  I’m not asking about the ‘meaning’ of life, for that will be something very unique and personal to each of us … what gives your life or mine meaning is not necessarily universal.  But, what I am asking is the purpose … what justifies me or you taking up space and using valuable resources on this planet?

No, I haven’t lost my bloomin’ mind … I’m just cleaning it out a bit.  Much of the news over the past few weeks/months/years, have led me to ask this question, have taken my mind down a path that needs to be explored.  And no, this isn’t in the least bit a deep philosophical discussion, but rather an ideological one.

Is the purpose of life to gather as much wealth, as many toys and shiny objects as possible during the course of one’s life?  It sure does seem that some people would answer in that way.  Think … here in the U.S., people applauded when the fool-on-the-hill rolled back environmental regulations in order to benefit the fossil fuel industries.  Why?  Well, the robber barons in the coal and oil industries applauded because it extended, albeit briefly, their ability to make money at the expense of the planet, the future.  Other people applauded because they hoped it meant their jobs in those industries would be secure, at least for a few more years, for they know no other trade.  And some applauded simply because it was Barack Obama, an African-American, under whose tutelage the regulations had been established in the first place.

Donald Trump ran in 2016 on the buzz-phrase, “make America great again”, but what does ‘great’ mean?  My vision of a ‘great nation’ is different than that of those who wear the silly red hats and cheer Trump’s slogan.  My vision of what makes the U.S. … or any nation, for that matter … great is diversity, people of all nationalities, all getting along together.  In my vision of a great nation, people help each other just because it’s the right thing, the compassionate thing to do, not because there is something in it for them.  But, in the maga crowd’s view, I think greatness is defined differently.  I think it is defined in terms of relative wealth and of bigotry.  I think the maga crowd wish to turn this into a nation of straight, white, Christians, and in my book, that would be hell on earth.

So, what is the purpose of life?  And please note that I am not coming at this question from any religious viewpoint … that speaks, again, to the ‘meaning’ rather than the purpose.  To me, I would feel I had fulfilled my purpose if I made other people happy, if something I did improved the quality of life on earth for as many as possible.  I’ve no interest in wealth, am quite content with the basic essentials (essentials, of course, includes books!)  Do you think Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell or any other politician in our government today would be satisfied with such?  Or what about the CEOs of Exxon-Mobil, Amazon or Nike?

In my view, the purpose of life should be about making life better for everyone, not just for oneself, or even one’s family.  I fail to understand what pleasure is derived from gathering wealth just for the sake of wealth.  The only purpose I see in wealth is the ability to use such wealth to help others, to help find ways to improve the quality of life for as many people as possible.  But instead, those who value their wealth over humanity are using their wealth to destroy all life on earth.  They are using it to build more factories that spew more chemicals into the earth’s atmosphere.  They are using it to develop harmful products that enable them to grow more food but are killing the bees – bees without whom we will all die sooner than later.  They are using it to build and buy weapons, both for military and civilians, that have the sole purpose of killing.

Socialist?  Yeah, I pretty much lean that way these days.  I would much prefer to see equality among all than the scant 1%, or I believe it is now ½%, living in houses with gold-plated toilets while others go to bed with empty bellies.  I would like to see people getting along rather than the bitter gulf that exists between the political parties and their followers these days.  I would like to see people throw their guns into the sea, deciding that life has more value than the false sense of power the gun gives them.  I would like to see all people caring enough about future generations of all life forms to make the sacrifices necessary to protect and preserve the planet and its resources.

I think that our lives can have purpose, and for many they do, but that purpose isn’t money.  If one’s purpose is to amass great wealth, then I posit that the person truly has no purpose at all.  Thanks for putting up with my rambling thoughts for the day … and now … back to the news of the day.  I see Trump just fired John Bolton. More chaos. Sigh.

96 thoughts on “The Purpose of Life?

  1. Terrific post! I especially,iked this comment: “In my view, the purpose of life should be about making life better for everyone, not just for oneself, or even one’s family. I fail to understand what pleasure is derived from gathering wealth just for the sake of wealth. The only purpose I see in wealth is the ability to use such wealth to help others, to help find ways to improve the quality of life for as many people as possible. . .”

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  2. I love this question Jill!
    Pulpit warning…..Long duration……
    Are you sitting comfortably folks?
    If we look at the question of Life on a Cosmological Scale the answer would be:
    ‘Because’
    Life is part of the vast and beautifully complex web of interactions of the various forces at work within the Universe. Life arises in myriad shapes and forms. Our own Earth has evidence from the billions of years records of types whose exact nature experts argue over. Therefore Life ‘IS’ just like ‘Gravity’ IS. And we are part of that side of the Cosmos.
    Now when you come down to snuffly, scrappy recently arrived humans, then we get into the realms of self-awareness and thus our questioning as to why we are here. ( by the way There can be tremendous fun to had arguing about what is self-awareness and what does a colony which makes up a jellyfish ‘feel’).
    If you take a purely scientific view then we are here….yep….’Because’. We have certain attributes and abilities which makes us seem superior to other life. This is a touch of arrogance and inviting a great dose of Hubris because going back to the History of the World we’ve not been around so long and if we carry on we die out for failure to adapt and end up in the fossil record, only a smear not even close to the tenure of the Dinosaurs.
    If you want to take a more esoteric view as to why we have these gifts and attributes, then you could argue we are of a type of Life which could have a distinct extra-terrestrial purpose in The Universe. What that purpose is, we do not know because we’ve not been around that long, and we are still a long way off from learning. We might be one of the species which do not fulfil that purpose. Why we were given that purpose…..Ahhh there’s the rub.
    (I’m going to leave out the ‘There’s No Free-Will because all Life is not as it seems, we are controlled notion- I don’t subscribe)
    Ok, so take the theistic view. A Supreme Being in their plan gifted us with the ability to thrive and prosper, in a positive way. We screw up and we’re finished. We were given enough warnings and guidance through various messengers and examples, but we still carried the same dumb way and manufactured our own hells or punishments. We could be so much more, but we are vain and foolish.
    So let’s narrow this down to the folk. You and Me. Us and Then. The one persons on this planet for a while, maybe more than one ‘While’. The answer is, we have to survive, and we have to prosper. And how do we do that to ensure survival of not just us but the societies which support us, and we created…Why?….Simple.
    Compassion
    Respect
    Tolerance
    We make the best of what we have and try and help our fellow beings….flawed creatures that we are.
    (Me? I hope after this mortal shift on Earth, I am allowed to fly around the Cosmos for a while…just the Solar System…that’s enough to be going on with. A good mix of religion and science is so liberating!)

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    • This isn’t an easy question to answer, is it Roger? We all have different viewpoints. And it is exactly the division of our answers that fails to answer Jill’s question of what purpose we have as a whole species? I truly can’t answer that question properly. I am flummoxed.

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      • For me Colette the variety of answers reflect the very nature of our exisistence.
        We are part of something so vast in Time and Space we can only scratch at the very first layers of the surface.
        While we figure out even the beginings of the begining of an aswner we keep hold of our humility and do the best we can to help and not harm.

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    • An excellent response, even though I’m an non theist, my agreement in your comment is the same.

      But big purpose of the universe is just, as you say, ” because”. Same for our galaxy, solar system etc.
      Our species specific purpose is to breed and survive, as is any species.
      Our more personal purpose is to get and give what you can out of your short life and it’s different for every person.

      So it becomes a personal question for each of us and some will serve a big purpose (like finding a for cancer), most will have a purpose for family, friends, pets, civic community and the like and a few will totally waste their lives (gang thugs, drug addicts, pedophiles) and yes many of the rich and powerful (think Epstein) will as well.

      Maybe it’s as simple as just try to be a nice person and no as little harm as possible to the earth.

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    • Glad I fixed myself a fresh cuppa java! You ponder in such a fascinating manner, and with such thought-provoking ideas, that I was sad to see the comment come to an end. Funny … while I was reading it, Oliver decided it was high time I give him some pets, so he jumped up in my lap, used his paws to remove my hand from the computer, and I had no choice but to pet Ollie. While doing so, I read some of your comment aloud to him and said, “See, bug (one of his nicknames), you don’t have to worry about all this deep thought … all you gotta do is eat, sleep, be petted, and poop!” He shook his head, so perhaps there is more to their lives than we know? Anyway … I like your first answer best … just ‘because’. 😉

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    • That is a silly reply in my opinion. I think if most of us rationalise our opinion of life purpose, it has nothing to do with the dogma of some dictators view of the world. Communism is at least a hijacked idea of living in harmony, and corrupted into a control of the masses. Stalin no more cared about the millions of civilians that he starved through the second World War, than a flea cares about its blood host.

      Politics does not fit in a life purpose. Politics is the corruption of life purpose and is instrumental in discord, disharmony, and destruction of life-purpose. I wish people would not define themselves to the corrupted groups, and would instead look to the purer forms of individual thought. I think (I hope), that is what Jill is aiming for here with her question.

      I do not mean to offend you, but even if you meant that statement as a joke, it has missed the mark for me!

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      • Colette, it appears you want to take offence where there is none.
        Politics, you should know, is about how man governs himself in society. Everything is political. And in the end, whether the politics of the day is such that it promotes inequalities or equality, it fits in the question of life’s purpose.
        And while you say it is silly, you fail to realise that just a day or two ago, Jill had a post here about a right winger calling others commies because he disagreed with their position. And it is in that context that I told her not to be a commie.
        And while I don’t want to seem rude, I really don’t care that you didn’t get the joke.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I don’t think everything should be political, or religious for that matter. Too much emphasis is put on both. You make fair points. And, no I didn’t get the joke (it obviously will have more revelance for Jill), but I am sorry that you have seemingly taken offense. I stick with my opinion that it isn’t funny for me, but obviously not intended for me, so I bow out.

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            • That is a fair opinion, but I actually see politics as divisive as religion. It solves problems only for a percentage of the population and denigrate everyone else (dependent on the flavour of the day). We run around like rats in a maze, pressing the right buttons for our ‘treat’ but that does not free the rat to live life as it would choose. No matter who is voted for, with whatever system, we are captive and do not have true autonomy.

              I really think that Governments (we do need some kind of facility to create social order) should be governed by an equal council of 12 members. They should be the leaders of all political viewpoints. Some right leaning, some left perhaps, but ultimately, a joint council should replace one leader for making social rules and collecting the contribution from wider public for payment of socially mutual conveniences (utilities, roads, universal health, etc.).

              It should be less political and certainly, capitalistic corporations should be excluded. There should be no lobbying for monies from the corporate sector. Politics today is a joke. The political rally is a circus of such distaste that it is inconceivable that we should elect someone who simply shouts down their opponent with abuse and ridicule. We do not need dictators we need true leaders and that comes only from years of learning, intelligent thought and true compassion for all life. I don’t see any world political leaders doing that.

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              • The problem is that politics has been reduced to issues between political parties and elections which is given to be divisive because that is competition.

                There are those who question whether we should have a government if free association is not possible?

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                • I actually think big Government does not work (can’t consider everyone’s individual needs) , but then neither does tribalism (which excludes outsiders). Competition tends to escalate into war when unchecked. We need moderate common goals or nothing. It is better to go for common goals with such a crowded population of humans. We either evolve to that, or we die.

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  3. Life has meaning, but it has no purpose in the sense of the definition of purpose – a reason for its existence – since it arose by chance and not by design. For me it has meaning if I strive to be kind, to do good, and to take pleasure in what I believe and understand is good (my interpretation of good, of course). Life survives by instinct, and if we move beyond blind instinct it is because we have developed reasoning powers that allow us to do so. It’s just a pity that most of us don’t choose to do so.

    That should stir things up!

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    • Well Mick, that certainly takes away our responsibility, if life has no purpose. I think most people rather enjoy the attitude of just enjoying the ride through life. But, and it is a big but, there are a lot of unhappy people out there who might feel that their individual life has no meaning at all.

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      • On the contrary, I think it gives us a huge amount of responsibility. We are the ones responsible for ensuring that our little planet prospers and thrives, and we can’t just blame the bad stuff on some sort of ineffable plan. If we want a decent world, and a habitable world to pass on to our descendants, we have to all take responsibility for ensuring that happens. For my part, I have to work out what I can do, and then do it.

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        • I agree, but to say that the earth needs us, is going a bit far. It doesn’t. We need it, so in order to continue, we have to stop destroying that which preserves our place in it Mick. I don’t disagree with you but I cannot live without the idea that there is some ‘purpose.’ Existence for just the sake of existence, seems meaningless to me.

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          • By responsibility for whether our planet thrives or not, I’m just referring to the unfortunate fact that we have it in our hands to decimate the life on this planet and seriously mess up the climate; we’re well on our way to doing that now. Our responsibility is to stop that, and to attempt to reverse it. Already we have caused the extinction of a massive number of species of both plants and animals, and even if we mend our ways immediately, the shock waves will go on for some time.

            Yes, the planet can do without us, and would eventually recover from what we’ve done to it, but I don’t want the species that exist today to go first.

            And as for purpose, I guess it’s personal for each of us. It will depend on whether we believe there is something more than just the physical world.

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    • Very well-stated, and I agree with what you say. It is a pity that most don’t even understand how to use the power of reasoning. See, the thing is that one needs facts and data to truly think and reason, and people are all too willing to alter the facts to suit their own purposes, rather like using a pocket knife on the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle to make them fit.

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  4. Not meaning to contradict Colette, or anyone else, we really have to go back to the origin of life on earth, and look at the primordial soup where life most likely began: whatever started life, there was one primordial purpose, to survive. If life could not survive, there was no purpose in trying to survive. This goes without saying, but I feel it needs to be resaid.
    Looking backwards to the primordial soup, we can look at the purpose of survival on three different levels: survival of the self, survival of the species, and survival of life itself. Only, we humans are seeing this backwards, basing it on individual needs. Really we should be looking at those levels in the reverse order, most important the survival of life, then the survival of the species, and least important the survival of the self.
    How was life to survive? By splitting into as many lifeforms as possible, finding the best possible form became more likely. How were the lifeforms to survive? By reinforcing the good things about a species, and breeding for them to improve that species. And that meant breeding the best individuals. The more individuals who survived to breed the stronger the species became, and the stronger life became.
    This has been the pattern for over 4 billion years. Until humanity came along and screwed it up.
    (To be continued, some time, some where…)

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    • Survival of the fittest? Perhaps, but that is a very basic purpose meaningful only to existence. The human experience was not meant to last forever, only as long as our species play nice and evolve from destroying ourselves along with the whole planet.
      Who knows when all is said and done, perhaps the humble cockroach will remain, roaming the planet till the end of time.
      Purpose is what we make of our lives in the here-now, knowing full well that our current “human” manifestation is not the end of the road. Just a stage of development for consciousness to expand.
      It’s just an experiment in 3D consciousness continuum, “we’ll” be back in some form or another, or not.

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    • Who knows if the ‘intelligence’ of the formation of a primordial soup has purpose? What does life achieve? It achieves individuality within the whole organism. As an individual, every aspect has a responsibility for itself and the whole simultaneously. The result is growth, self awareness and continuity. Why? Now that is very hard to answer.

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      • At the primordial soup stage I would not yet use the word intelligence, but instinct. But of course, wherefore instinct?
        Whatever life is, or might be, the instinct to survive is paramont. For a mother, the instinct is for the young to survive, which overrides the instinct for self-survival, and speaks to the survival of the species. The more species that exist, the more likely life will survive. If all goes well, it is a self-perpetuating system.
        But if you insert even one species (humanity) that cares not about any other species’ survival, then you get a threat to life itself. The best we can hope for is to kill ourselves without killing every other species. Life has to protect itself.
        But yes, there are so many other factors involved that it is hard to look at our lowest common denominators. I have little trouble doing that, as I doubt you have much trouble, Colette. You might not express it the way I do, but I know you love life, in all its various forms. So do a lot of other people. But not enough to save humanity yet, or to save every species besides our own. This is what I want to achieve in life, one of my purposes, for I do not have just one. But my main hope is for future generations, if there are any, because I have not made much headway in my lifetime…

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      • @colettebytes
        Why? Why not??
        Not to be trite, but the fact that we exist at all, fully conscious and aware, growing, expanding, contributing to the collective consciousness, existence, dare i say…GOD. Well, that’s good enough for me. This human simulation is never boring that’s for sure! 😉

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    • I certainly cannot disagree with anything you say … and I absolutely agree that humans have almost completed their destruction of the earth and the lifeforms that were here before … who ever thought it was a good idea for primates to ‘evolve’ anyway?

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      • Lol. It was anyone’s idea, it was just the natural way of evolution. Try everything at least once. If it works, keep supporting it. When it stops working, let it die away. Letting primates evolve seemed to be working, but then it stopped.
        What went wrong? Arrogance and greed! What went right? Absolutely nothing! Unless we can changes our ways faster than evolution allows for, we might as well commit geno-suicide. That would make things easier on everyone else.

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        • @ RG
          Yes evolution to a certain extent, within the parameters of our natural universe. But don’t you find our universe, life, existence, consciousness to be absolutely perfect? I can’t accept that our evolution happened by chance, we must be part of some grand design to even exist at all. Cosmic soup may contain all the raw ingredients, but there must be a master chef “out there” to cook the natural world into being.
          Apparently the objective is for humans to learn consequences, cause and effect, natural law. And perhaps the destructive path is more expedient for our evolutionary development. Otherwise collectively we should have already done “something” many moons ago. Therefore it must be our collective destiny to experience the dark side, how else do you explain Trump being Prez… million to 1 odds! Oh well….

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  5. An excellent and thought provoking post! If I were as eloquent as yourself, I would attempt to answer this question in my own words. As that is not the case, I will borrow some words from some brilliant minds. If Aristotle is to be believed : “Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life…”. However, Eleanor Roosevelt opined : “Happiness is not a goal…it’s a by-product of a life well lived.” Then if happiness is neither the meaning nor the goal, what exactly is my purpose in life? An answer : “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson. I like to believe that I have shown all of Emerson’s purpose of in my life in my little corner of the world following these words attributed to Theodore Roosevelt : “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” Thank-you!

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    • Thank you, Ellen! Everybody has their own writing/speaking style, and I find you to be quite eloquent in your own way … and informative!!! I learn from almost every comment you leave!

      Unfortunately, I know a number of people who seem to share Aristotle’s view of life’s purpose. Needless to say, I don’t. I don’t disagree with Ms. Roosevelt, but my favourite, the view that most nearly matches my own, is Emerson’s. Like you, I think that in my own small way I have followed that path, though I’ve stumbled on the roots sticking up on the path more than a few times.

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  6. What a beautiful post. YOUR vision and purpose, is MY vision and purpose. If more people, and I mean lots more people, felt like this, our world would be such a better place. The greed of a few is ruining it for the rest of us. It’s why things that most Americans believe is right and just, don’t ever happen. They hoard their money like it’s no tomorrow. OMG, what if I only made $50 million last year? How will I feed my family? I need my tax cuts!!!
    It’s enough to make me sick…literally. The politicians are afraid of these robber barons, as you so aptly described them. And now they have a stooge/imbecile/buffoon(take your pick) in the White House to do their bidding. The Koch’s and their ilk have been building this oligarchy for decades now. It’s going to take a real leader, in the mode of a Teddy Roosevelt, that can bring us all together and start to put some roadblocks on these people. Trump has set us back decades.
    We’re running out of time I fear. 2020…..holy crap…2020 is so important. Great piece Jill.

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    • Thanks, Jeff! I think most people are like you and I … but, sadly, the world is run by a handful who, I suppose due to some genetic misfire, cannot seem to wrap their heads around things like equality, moderation, humanity. They live for the shiny things in life, missing entirely the things that have true value. You and I … we know what really matters, we can take great joy from something as simple as watching a hummingbird feed, or a squirrel eat a nut, or seeing the flowers come up in the spring. Unfortunately, sometimes when I look around at this nation … at the world … I think I just don’t want to stay here anymore. But then, I figure part of my job is to help change things if possible, so … here I stay. We do what we can … it will never be enough, but it’s the best we can do.

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      • Yes, and that handful of people continue to wreak havoc on our democracy, all because of the power, money, and influence they possess. I saw yesterday that only 34% of eligible voters turned out in the special Congressional NC election. That is beyond pathetic and unacceptable. I realize it was a unique election, and people aren’t paying the attention they will be in next years contest…but geez…34%? The Dem only lost by a few percentage points, in a heavy Repub area. If a few thousand more had been motivated? Oh well….too late now. This can’t happen next year!! Overwhelming turnout will negate the big buck robber barons. That, Jill, is a fact we both know to be true.

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        • Yes, as the election nears, say around June-thru-October, we must make sure to get the message about the importance of voting out loud and clear. If we start too soon, it becomes just so much noise by November. I’ll be putting a “VOTE” meme at the bottom of every post as the time nears. Apathy could be the thing that sinks our boat … we mustn’t let us. What sickened me most today, apart from Trump’s lies about helping at Ground Zero during 9/11, was that he took credit for North Carolina. It wasn’t, I think, a mandate on him! Oh, how I would love to beat that ‘man’ over the head with my iron skillet or a two-by-four!!!

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  7. While I won’t attempt to express my thoughts on life’s purpose as it is definitely tied to a metaphysical/spiritual philosophy, albeit not in the least religious, I will share with you possibly the most inane, absurd statement I have personally heard come out of a human’s mouth since MAGA began.
    Let’s call it a Southern Christian point of (idiotic) view. She said..,
    “God is sending us a message with all the weather disasters because we elected Obama as president and he wasn’t even born in the United States. And the governor of Hawaii faked his birth certificate.” And I had to continue with my workup. It was, in fact, so stupid that I wasn’t even properly angered by it. What I am, at this point, is seriously concerned that the world has finally come unhinged and idiocracy reigns. 😡😱😭

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  8. like you, I’ve become quite socialist in many of view over the past few years as well. If you look at a listing of the happiest countries in the world, most of them seem to be social democracies. There must be something to it…

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    • Hi Jim.
      Speaking as a UK socialist of a very….errr…strong line (ie Corbyn and his supporters are woolly-headed dreamers) I can understand the attraction.
      However like all political creeds it needs to be tempered with moderation. Sweden was always considered the model socialist state but sometimes its state organs can be labelled as efficient but unfeeling. The less said about Venezuela the better. The British Labour Party is now in the hands of a wing which blames all ills on the USA and anyone who sides with USA, through a tangled web comparable with the Alt Right many blame the Jewish community as a whole for many ills as ‘apparently’ they all support the current Israeli Govt.
      To repeat moderation is the thing; for all of those who shout about being Christians they would do well to read the New Testament Gospels in detail, now there is socialism.
      In conclusion you don’t want folk like me running the show, all I will say in my defence is I know I shouldn’t be running the show.
      God be with you in 2020.

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      • Hi Roger.
        In theory, hard left socialism does not really offer the equal opportunity and harmony for everyone. Traditionally, it has been corrupted into a set of rules that places people into a regime of control by ‘elected’ leaders that continuously re-elect themselves. The lives of the people become mired in enforced adherence to the state. Individual thinking is not allowed, only the leadership decided governance is allowed. Historically, this has not resulted in Utopia, but rather the opposite. One only has to look at the Pol Pot regime in Cambodia to see what it is like to live under communistic rule. It is well worth watching the movie, ‘the Killing Fields.’ While obviously this is a Hollywood version, the reality of mainland China, North Korea and Russia, is that its people are not free to have opinions. Their thoughts and their ideas are dictated by the regime. Nothing outside of that is ever allowed.

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        • I agree with you completely Colette.
          Whereas Hard Left starts out with the idealistic view that this is the true and only way for the ‘Good of the People’ and all will be well when The Truth (ie The Hard Left’s truth) is known.
          The very Hard Left view requires an intense hatred of the preceding regimes and an paranoiac urge to erase them and anything associated with them.
          In turn this breeds a suspicion about anyone or anything with is not in line with doctrinal thinking.
          You will observe from the antics of the UK’s supporters of Corbyn the following ‘truths’
          1. The BBC broadcasts only biased view of the Right.
          2. Anyone who asks of Corbyn a difficult questions or does not report his views ‘accurately’ is to be vilified and threatened (Viz the disgusting treatment of BBC reporter Laura Kunesberg)
          3. Anyone Jewish is a supporter of Israel.
          Thus to prove how divisive the Hard Left is , I consider Corbyn and his supporters to be traitors to the People for not fulfilling their primary role of getting rid of the Conservative Government (I say this with half-a-tongue in cheek, by mocking myself as well as attacking them).
          Me and mine running the show….Hello Ninety- Eighty-Four…..Not be trusted at all.
          As I said before at least I aware of my own idiocy, thus I restrain my attacks to those who do not display Compassion, Tolerance and Respect irrespective of their political leanings.
          Yours with best wishes
          ‘Traitor’ to the Cause of Socialism by dint of attacking Mr Corbyn and his crew.
          Roger

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      • I agree that one needs to sensible when thinking about which policies to support. In my ideal world, everyone would be an independent and just think for themselves instead of just blindly following the party platform. Thanks for the good wishes in 2020!

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  9. Chaos everywhere. Here we have ceased to have a functioning government. A charlatan of a PM, Completely out of his depth, no more than a pawn for a dangerous special advisor who claims to be ‘of the people’ speaking from his £1.6m house (not to mention his wife’s castle) but is potentially the most dangerous internal threat to democracy we have ever faced. Purpose is to navigate the shambles and live life in a way which The likes of Trump and Cummings could never appreciate.

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  10. Jill, too many issues are portrayed as “either/ or” when the answer is a little of both.
    – the US economy is a fettered capitalist model with some socialist underpinnings; the question is to what degrees do we want it to be.
    – John Bolton has been passed on for years as he is too much of a hawk and there were some questions about his leadership style, so he should have never been hired in the first place in my view. To me, you want a leader that will exhaust every option before resorting to force.
    – America has a role as a global citizen and leader; we cannot shirk our responsibility. Another ambassador said America provides guardrails, yet is retrenching from that role. The key is we cannot punt on our role without an echo effect. History shows trouble lies ahead when countries go nationalistic. We must not forget this.
    Keith

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sorry, Keith, but your wording is offensive. America took upon itself to be a global leader, without asking anyone else if this leadership was desired. It was not! However, you forced it on us anyway. So now Trump is trying to extend that self-taken role into a global dictatorship with himself at the head. And he is the punter, and he is punting. But he is punting for the sidelines so that his opponents cannot advance the ball. He is looking to smother us near our own endzone, to further that analogy. His strategy will not work, but at what cost? It is unaffordable, whatever it is. If you do not police yourself, and Trump, then the rest of .the world will have to do it for you. No one is going to like it if that becomes the role we have to take.
      Govern yourself, or the world will have to govern you.

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      • Rawgod, it was not my intention to offend. I think countries grow in influence good or bad. Another ambassador said the US’ strengths are its relationships and military. Sadly, we are denigrating key relationships as well as leaving global agreements. That is unfortunate.

        Right now, both Germany and France are filling greater roles in western democracies with the UK’s self-inflicted wound and America’s retrenching. Yet, the future economic growth will be Asia-centric with India. China, South Korea and southeast Asia.Keith

        Liked by 1 person

        • I know you were not trying to be offensive with your words, Keith. What was offensive was actually just that fact, many times things are said that are just simple statements to most like-minded people, but are offensive to other-minded people. They are signs of underlying attitudes. I cannot think of an analogy for you at this time, but you take for granted that America is a leader of global society and economy as if you earned that position, when really America bullied its way into that position.
          It was not you I found offensive, Keith, only the words you spoke. Jill is probably going to yell at me for this, again, but there is no need for a world leader–we are all equal nations together. And that is as it should be.

          Liked by 2 people

          • Thanks for clarifying. I will tell you straight up I did not mean say the US is THE global leader. My intent and what I thought I said was to imply the US being one of the global leaders. There is no global leader. Yet, I do believe by being untrustworthy and beating up on allies and trading partners, we are retrenching from that role.

            To be frank, we have used that influence quite poorly such as the story on WMDs to invade Iraq. The UK did a study and confirmed that George W. Bush and Tony Blair were culpable for this fictitious reason to invade Iraq. There is movie coming out that highlights a British spy who blew the whistle on Blair/ Bush for spying on members of the UN Security Counsel to sway votes to favor the invasion. And, just last week, I read former CIA operative Valerie Plame may be running for Congress. Her cover was blown to discredit her husband, former Ambassador Joe Wilson, who did not find a lead on WMD, but the final report said he did. When he wrote a New York Times article called “What I did not find,” Plame was outed and one of Dick Cheney’s people (Scooter Libby) went to jail.

            I highlight this example as it is fresh in the news and shows how NOT to use influence. I think we are more on the same page. This behavior by leaders is frustrating. Keith

            Liked by 1 person

            • That is because they are not leaders, though they have positions that should be filled by leaders. American politics under Trump has lost all credibility in the world, if not in America itself. Trump is a total laughingstock, which means America too is a laughinstock. But really, I think it is a cryinglot, because half the advancements this world has made have been lost and turned backwards in a mere 3 years…

              Liked by 1 person

    • History does this to a nation, suddenly either by its designs or by its accidents (they always play a part) it wakes up one morning and says ‘Wow We Are The Big Ones’.
      Rome, Egypt, China, Byzantium, Mongols, Caliphates (of one sort or another), Ottoman, Hapsburgs, Spain, France, Netherlands, Moghuls, Great Britain, Russia, USSR and The USA. All take their place upon the world stage. Sadly there is never an underlying theme of benevolence and as for infighting…..Trump wouldn’t have lasted a month in most of these and if he had he would have been shuffled off into a corner for his ‘advisors’ to run the show.
      Naturally you guys are being blamed for the ills of all the world while unless living nearby or being interested in the world stage no one notices Russia or China up to the same tricks. Saudia Arabia and Israel because they are linked to the USA, not so much Iran though (please don’t link me with arch-hypocritic and out of a job Bolton- I’m just observing here about regional power politics)
      God guide you all in 2020.

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  11. from twitter: “Press is about to go from “John Bolton is a radical warmonger who never should be permitted near the Oval Office” to “This is a story of how a reasonable, respected expert was dismissed by a chaotic, megalomaniacal Administration, and whatever his critique is, we agree!” he was fired shortly before his favorite holiday.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, when I first got the news, I knew the press would have a field day. Bolton and Pompeo are both warmongers, I was against either of them being put into their positions. That said … in the past, every time somebody leaves Trump’s administration, he replaces them with somebody even worse. This is the national security advisor … much too important a position to screw around with! Chaos reigns.

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      • exactly, that’s the one thing that I like about Tulsy Gabbert. She’s against these regime change wars but the DNC doesn’t like that position so she probably won’t make the cut, even though polling data shows that people like her. This is the sad reality of our political two-party system, our voices really don’t matter apart from the lesser of two evils choices they foist upon the people.

        Still, we have to keep trying, giving up is what they would love for us to do.

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  12. The purpose of life is life.

    But I think you are asking a different question. You are asking “What is the purpose of a person’s life?”

    I have long made it the purpose of my life, to leave the world a better place than it would otherwise be. I’m sure I don’t always make the best decisions to achieve that, but it is what I have made my purpose.

    Other people will have to speak for themselves. It is not up to me to say what is their purpose.

    As for the purpose of Donald Trump’s life? Maybe it’s best to avoid commenting on that.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I think I was asking … perhaps I worded it poorly … what is the purpose of humans, both collectively and individually, on this earth. Are we just here to see to our own “happiness”, as some would argue? Or, do we have a responsibility to the rest of life on the planet?

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Purpose is that ephemeral thing that we strive to find. It is not material gain, it is not a superior intellect, it is not the perfect physical form, it is not even about reproducing and increasing our numbers.

    My ‘purpose’ is to find the connection with all life, and to support it, and contribute to it, somehow making the sum of the parts better than the individual. Sadly, we do not seem to be doing that. 😔

    Liked by 3 people

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