Hiking causes me to wonder about such things
When I see pine cones beneath towering ponderosa pines hundreds of years old, I realize their seeds have a purpose to create new pine trees — given the right sun, soil, moisture and nutrients.
I even see small pine trees sprouting in the forest. Their purpose too, is to grow into towering pines.
You might say that, collectively the forest of pines has the purpose to sustain itself as a pine forest. Conservationists say so and urge us, by good conservation practices, to help the forests to attain their purpose.
Some though believe forests do not have a purpose, but are created through random circumstances.
I am of Albert Einstein’s view though, that God does not play dice with the universe. Some could argue that I have taken Einstein’s quote “out of context,” that Einstein applied his rolling-dice-view to sub-atomic particles. But that would be saying that subatomic particles have nothing to do with pine forests.
At 88, I am still childish enough to allow my thinking to be untainted by book learning.
I still have lots of “why” questions — the same as I did when I was knee-high to my mother.
Why, for instance, do pine seeds get created with the urge to create new pine trees? And why do pine trees need to create new pine seeds? I don’t mean “how” do they create, but “why” do they?
It’s still the old chicken-and-egg conundrum. Which came first? The pine seed or the pine tree? And why do they have their purpose built into them?
How Come We Human’s Have Purpose?
Death camp survivor, psychiatrist Viktor Frankl, based his entire Logo Therapy upon the concept that humans who have purpose to their lives have far greater chance of survival than those who don’t. His book, Man’s Search for Meaning, is a widely popular, easy-to-read, expression of how to find life’s purpose.
Frankl had plenty of anecdotal evidence of those he observed in Dachau who saved their lives, compared to those who succumbed to the death-dealing death camp SS troopers.
So, out on the trail, I wonder about why we humans should have purpose to our lives — both the biological purpose of reproduction and our psychological purpose for our lives.
These are naive questions, to be sure. But, I’m really interested in why we humans gained our belief in the first place that our lives have a purpose.
It is a practical question, the answer to which might help clarify my own life’s purpose. Hey, at my age I’d like to be sure I’ve “got it.”
Answers to the Big Questions
I raise questions here that I have wrestled with over the years.
I’ve found it is useful to wonder about them out in forests and mountains, well away from distractions.
Over the years I have found some answers.
I will relate them in future posts.
Until then . . .