Life is hard, complicated, frustrating, and can be downright unfair sometimes.
But life is beautiful and magical, as well. Sometimes, it’s important to take a step back and reflect on how lucky we are to be here for this short time. And it’s answers like these from random people that might make you reconsider what we’re all doing here in the first place.
What is the meaning of life?
Here’s what AskReddit users had to say about this fascinating question.
1. Dance and enjoy it…
“The meaning of life is to enjoy it. Most people see life as a journey to “success” only to find out success isn’t like what you thought it was like. Life is like an improvised musical theater you are an actor in.
Your job is to simply express yourself how you see fit, have fun doing it, make it as enjoyable as possible for those on stage acting with you (The people in your life) and for those watching you from afar (Strangers in your life).
And just like musical theater, there is no purpose to it. Except to dance and enjoy it.”
2. Self-improvement and moderation.
“I like to think the meaning of life is moderation and constant self-improvement. In the case of moderation everything is bad for you in high dosages but it’s also bad to not have enough of anything. Moderation.
Like to drink? Moderation prevents death behind the wheel and to others, and also keeps you from being an alc*holic and keeps you from spending too much money on it. Video games? MODERATION. Too much video games play sessions will push your loved ones away and keep you from being productive.
In the case of self-improvement instead of hiding behind social norms or excuses seek to improve yourself for you and learn to really love yourself and overcome your insecurities and flaws and then you can truly love someone else. That’s the first step to happiness. So self-improvement and moderation.”
3. The little things.
“Peace of mind & having a place to call home.
Leaving your house & returning back safely is such an underrated blessing.”
4. A life well-lived.
“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
5. Nothing too special.
“Well, it’s nothing very special.
Try and be nice to people, avoid eating fat, read a good book every now and then, get some walking in, and try and live together in peace and harmony with people of all creeds and nations.”
6. Go and live.
“To have fun.
Life’s too short, and I truly think its meanT to be enjoyed. Years pass by so quickly, so do whatever the fuck you want. Go out, see nature, have fun with friends, do stupid shit, travel the world, and fucking laugh. We live in such a beatiful place. Really tho, see how lucky we are. We can experience so many things, sadness, happiness, jealousy, love, excitement, fear. Its crazy.
Just go and live.”
7. That’s it.
Our only purpose as organisms is to reproduce and make more organisms, so that the species may survive. That is it. That is the truth.”
8. A better future.
“To make the world better for our future generations!
Think back on all the hard work done by billions of people to get you to where you are today. It’s crazy that we’ll never know them.”
9. Yours to decide.
“There is no overarching, all encompassing meaning to life. Aside from biological purpose, to propagate, there isn’t much.
But, that’s not as bleak as it sounds. It’s saying that life has the meaning YOU attribute to it. Maybe you feel you have a calling. Maybe the meaning of life is helping others.
Maybe it’s material gain. Maybe it’s a spiritual pursuit. Maybe it’s to see the world. It’s yours to decide, as long as it isn’t taking away from others.”
10. Pretty easy.
Be happy – create your meaning in the process, don’t hurt others. Leave it better than you found it.”
11. Be nice.
“This is a tough question, because everyone has a different answer, but I would have to with creating life better for those around you.
If you make a machine that makes someone’s life easier, they may make a machine to make another’s life easier. The cycle continues until the end of time, and it has been a fundamental of human psychology since the beginning of mankind, because humans are naturally social creatures.
To quote the meme, “Apes together strong.” Plus, it feels nice to be nice.”
12. Try to be happy.
No matter what you do or who you do it with you should always strive to be happy.”
13. Enjoy it while it lasts.
“I’d say to enjoy the time you have.
A healthy mix of hedonism, intellectualism and helping others. By helping others you better society and a better society makes life easier.”
14. Flip the question around.
“For me I believe that the question is backwards.
It should read “what gives life meaning?”
When you look at the universe it’s a series of constants and cause/effect. Gravity, thermodynamics, etc. A ledge breaks, things fall. Given enough time even stars burn out.
But then life comes in and mucks it all up. We put things back up on ledges, and discover Higgs Boson style science to potentially reignite stars. Just as a “eff off” to the universe at large. A very Discworld set up in a way.
In the end things only matter because you, me, we, as living creatures see them as something that matters.
Universe: So what, light refraction
Life: That’s pretty, and I like it. I’m going to paint everything that color.
So for me what matters most in this world is what you as a person think are important. What motivates you, and makes you content. As long as you aren’t harming anyone, just live the life you want and enjoy the time you have in this lifetime.
We only go around one time, and the universe is special, has a meaning because for one moment in it you were here. You did something, even if it’s nothing. That is what it was all here for, for your big show. For my big show. For the show we all live.”
15. Words from the older generation.
“My grandfather fought in the Pacific theater in WW2. He shipped out weighing around 200 pounds and came home at about 100 pounds. Like most of the people who served he refused to talk about the war at all. The only thing that he would talk about was the hunger.
His conclusion was “The only things that matter in this life are the food you put in your mouth and the people around your table”. He was a very good man and the older I get the more I think he was exactly right.”
16. An interesting take.
“”The meaning of life is just to be alive. It’s so plain and so simple and yet everyone rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.” -Alan Watts
There are some really interesting perspectives in those answers.
Now we want to hear from you.
In the comments, please tell us what YOU think is the meaning of life.
We’d love to hear what you have to say!