Please point me to the scientific study that gives us the meaning of life.
I always wonder what people mean by "meaning" when they ask these questions. It seems to me that "meaning" is a subjective term. It becomes the question "what does life mean to me." No scientific study can give us "the meaning of life," because there is no such thing as "the meaning of life." There is my meaning of life (what life means to me), and there is your meaning of life. We each have to decide for ourselves what life means for us.
Second I do not necessarily believe the above is quite as definite as you make it out to be. That we are social does not mean that it was an evolved trait, and we certainly are not dependent on cooperation for our survival.
We certainly have several evolved traits that are social adaptations: Our language ability; The long period from childbirth until the child becomes self-sufficient; Our loss of fur.
As for survival, sure some individuals could survive. We see that with hermits. But solitary survival is difficult, and it would be difficult for enough individuals to survive so that the species could persist.
As long as evolution is meant in the neutral sense I agree. If it is meant in a directional sense (getting better or more complete) then I disagree.
I intended that in the neutral sense.
Do you believe a person would not develop a moral system of some kind without others to interact with?
It's hard to see what would be the use of such a moral system, if there were no others to interact with.
Of course, in practice, a child is normally raised by parents (or the tribe). So there are others to interact with during the years where moral development would occur.
Language ability was not driven by adaptation, unless we are using a lamarkian system of evolution.
By "language ability" here, I was referring to the change in shape of the throat (compared to other apes) that makes it possible to make complex sounds. I was also referring to neurons that are needed to control the fine articulation of the vocal chords, and the brain areas to support them. I'm not sure what you would see as lamarkian about developing these.
I am at a loss to see what long periods from birth to self-sufficiency, and especially loss of fur have to do with social adaptation.
That long period is when socialization occurs. The lack of fur makes us more sensitive to touch, caressing, etc, which plays a role in socialization. More importantly, the lack of fur make a child more vulnerable, and more dependent on others. The child's learning to cope with such dependency is an important part of what drives socialization.
What is the "use" of a moral system anyway? It appears mainly to be a way for a person to understand themselves, produce a narrative or force a consistency of narrative for one's identity and that's it.
You must have a different understanding of "morality" than I. To me, it seems obvious that morality is part of our social contract.
Imagine you have no other person to interact with. Aren't there rules that you might construct for yourself, including prohibitions you might set feeling that following them will result in something better for you, or the world as a whole?
Rules? Sure. If I found an effective way of catching fish, then I might make that into rules (or at least practices). I don't see what it has to do with morality.
For example, would you then destroy a beaver's dam as much as look and admire it?
If I have no other person to interact with, then I am presumably living in the wild. Finding food for the day becomes a major chore. If destroying a beaver dam would help with finding food, I expect I woiuld do it. Otherwise, I expect I wouldn't have the time to waste on it.
Science is the study of the physical world. One cannot know of anything that is of importance within the realm of science. Meaning, true purpose, it all comes in the realm of spirituality, God, the search for truth. Socrates said it best when he discussed what he thought was truly important in life.
The physical world brings you food to eat, water to drink, air to breath. How long do you think you would last if you instead relied on the spiritual world for those?
That is where you are seriously mistaken. Food, drink, breathing are central to your destiny.
If you were suffering from thirst, had pangs of hunger, and if it were a struggle for you to get your next breath of air, you would find it almost impossible to even think about spirituality. It is only because you have the fortune to be well fed and have your other basic physiological needs satisfied that you are even able to think of spiritual things.
When I challenge some of your posts, I am not trying to talk you out of a spiritual life. The way you lead your life has to be your choice, and is not for me to object.
What troubles me about some of your posts, is that you seem to be lacking perspective. My challenging of your posts is in the hope that you will develop a better perspective.
I readily admit that I might be misjudging you.
Are you are aware that Mother Theresa, with her deep spiritual committment, nevertheless has a crisis of faith? That may happen to you too, so I hope you will have the perspective that allows you to deal with it.
Nwr will tell me that it is subjective, but one cannot be a relativist, there lies in life, absolute truth.
I have suggested that truth is a human invention. That's not the same as relativism.
If there is a convenient library, you might want to spend some time looking through the philosophy section to see what is written about truth. You might find that it is all circular. The tendency is to define truth as correspondence to the facts. But then facts are likely to be defined as true statements. Before you commit yourself to a search for absolute truth, it might be wise to investigate whether there is such a thing.
I'm not sure if you saw Message 145, and my response to it. The message quotes Dawkins, where he gives his mechanistic view of existence. I think that's where you get your idea that life is meaningless to a scientist. Well, maybe it is meaningless to Dawkins, although I doubt it. I disagree with Dawkins, as I indicated in Message 146.