Thursday, October 19, 2006

The Meaning of Life

Sandra and I were walking along the Marina the other day and a group of 4 or 5 teenagers, one with a video camera, stopped us.

“What do you think is the meaning of life?” a thin, freshly scrubbed, earnest young man asked.

I was going to blow him off and keep walking but decided instead to stop.

“There is no meaning to life,” I said.

The kid looked troubled. “No meaning? Well how can you go on living then?”

I breathed deeply and exhaled. “I do that,” I said. “I breathe in and out and in and out and keep living.”

Now he looked like he felt sorry for me. And I saw the same look on the faces of his buddies.

“Well, if that’s all there is to life then you can’t enjoy it.”

“Of course I can.” I looked around. In front of me was the beautiful bay. To my left was the Golden Gate Bridge. The sky was blue. The air was warm. “It’s all beautiful.”

Now he got to the point. “So you don’t think there is a creator. You don’t think there’s intelligent design behind our life.”

“No. There’s no creator behind it. It’s just the way it is. It doesn’t mean anything. It’s just beautiful.”

They kept trying. How can you explain life then? I don’t explain it. How can you explain the beauty of a human eye? It’s just beautiful. No explanation needed. How about the world around us? And the sky and the sea and, and, and . . .

We were clearly hopeless. Lost souls, just going through life asleep, without an awareness and appreciation of the intelligent creator.

We said goodbye and walked on. It was an absolutely glorious day. We totally enjoyed it.


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