We cannot see back to the beginning of time, nor forward to the end of time, Or even if such limits exist as a beginning or an end. Neither can we see down to the tip of the roots from which we sprang, nor can we see what may be the highest limits of our possible achievement. We only have limited sight in any direction from where we are now, and from that we can only report what is seen, conjecture at what is partially revealed in the shadows, but not what lies beyond. So the meaning of life given here can only go so far, and falls far short of being comprehensive. Thus it is with all knowledge.
OUR PLACE IN THE UNIVERSE
In what we call “the universe” we are apparently an insignificant speck of flotsam. We can not see its borders, if there be any. Its vastness engulfs us in a sea of emptiness filled with nuclear fire, primal ice and untold, apparently infinite distances we can not measure. Untold galaxies occupy the universe in all directions without seeming end. We do not know if we are the only universe, or but one of many universes. Our universe may be alone, or it may be as a small bubble in a froth of bubbles on a larger wave in a sea of universes. In looking out, we see light emanating from objects as they were thousands, millions, or even billions of years in the past. What the universe might look like in an instant of time is hidden in a vastness so great the ripples of light rays finally reaching our eyes may no longer represent what is now. In the cosmic scheme of things we appear to have no known meaning.
OUR PLACE IN OUR GALAXY
We exist in the universe as part of a galaxy we call the Milky Way. Our Milky Way galaxy is but one of uncounted billions or trillions of galaxies strewn in strings and clusters throughout the visible universe. Our star in the Milky Way galaxy is but one of billions of stars, star clusters, unknown systems, dust, and gases circling a central amalgamation of super stars making up the Milky Way galaxy. The distance across our Milky Way galaxy is so great that species might emerge and fall extinct, or scores of human civilizations rise and fall, in the time it takes light to travel across the Milky Way. The stellar inter-actions around us are cataclysmic, and our presence by chance only has yet escaped annihilation in stellar chaos. In the galactic scheme of things, we appear to be insignificant.
OUR PLACE IN OUR SOLAR SYSTEM
Our sun is a star on an outer fringe of a spiral arm of the Milky Way galaxy. Our sun, or star, forms a system of several orbiting planets, comets, asteroids, dust clouds, and other matter anchored into seemingly permanent, synchronous orbits around the central star, our sun. We ultimately derive most, if not all, our energy from the sun, which appears to be a nuclear fission and fusion furnace. The earth is significant in our solar system, as it appears to be the only planet in our solar system to naturally evolve life forms, and the only one inhabited by higher life forms such as humans. It is possibly the only planet in the solar system to naturally support any life forms. The earth is the only known planet to reside within an orbital zone around the star which is conducive to the creation and evolution of life forms, having an oxygen-rich atmosphere, oceans of water, a protective magnetic envelope around the planet, and the average temperature being neither to hot, nor to cold, to support life. Within our solar system, we humans are most significant, and apparently unique.
OUR PLACE ON OUR PLANET
Our planet, which we call Earth, is tilted in its orbit, producing the four seasons. The seasons in turn gives rise to tolerance to mild temperature variances in plant and animal forms, and require humans exercise imagination and cunning to exist comfortably within its temperature extremes. Like most planets in our solar system, we have a moon orbiting around our planet. The influence of our moon, intertwined with the solar seasons, on plant and animal life, including humans, appears to be substantial – the solar seasons affecting food supplies, and the lunar cycles affecting the tides in the ocean, and apparently influencing the cycles of fertility in some life forms, including humans. Humans are the dominant life on the planet we call Earth, having subjugated all larger life forms, and striving mightily to subjugate the microbes that feast upon us.
On the earth we alone appear to have the power within us to consciously change our environment to suit ourselves – anywhere, and anytime. Other animals also modify their environment in the form of nests, burrows, and tunnels, and a few primates and birds have used simple tools, but none have the very extensive tools and edifices that human societies produce, and none have the capability, on their own, to leave the bounds of Earth. Only humans have that capability, and that also appears to be our manifest destiny – to colonize our solar system, and the galaxy beyond.
OUR PLACE IN SOCIETY
The meaning of life for an individual human is about his or her place in human society - where we fit in with our family, our group, our clan, our tribe, our state. The soul of society at the political state level is God - the collective consciousness of the state society aware of itself, continuing-in-kind and prospering. The conscience of society is its religion - the keeper of what is moral or immoral -- that which is good or bad, measured against whether the act is beneficial or harmful to the greater, collective society.
When an immature individual has no family to protect, nurture and guide it, it is then the individual against everyone and everything, else. It will likely not long survive, nor mature and reproduce-in-kind, nor prosper. At the end of it's life, very likely to be short and unpleasant, if not painful, the line of continuance that brought forth that individual, and which had promise to branch and continue on forever, is extinguished and ended. If such an individual manages to survive to maturity, it will likely engage in activities inimical and destructive to the greater society.
The highest hierarchal level in which the individual exists has a duty to ensure that sound, healthy individuals are born into the society, and that immature individuals are protected from disease, accident and abuse, and that they are sufficiently nurtured, educated, and otherwise groomed to enter the society as productive, loyal contributors to the greater society.
From a genealogical standpoint, the purpose of the individual ends when it produces the next generation. However, in the context of a family, clan, tribe or state, the individual may serve other important and necessary functions within a society other than that of reproduction. In such context the purpose of the individual is as a necessary or desirable part of the mechanism of a greater society, be it clan, tribe, or state, which aids the greater society to survive, continue-in-kind, and prosper.
When an individual becomes so self-absorbed so as to attend to only those self-centered, egotistical, and selfish purposes, as sometimes occurs through accident, developmental abnormalities, misguidance, or the influence of drugs, alcohol, and other intoxicants, such an individual loses value to the attending society, and may even become harmful and destructive, requiring removal or elimination.
No human child can survive without some sort of family to protect and nurture it through the very vulnerable years of infancy and childhood. And the best way to ensure the maturation and success from childhood, into adulthood, and successful integration into the greater society, is the cooperative, nuclear (two-parent) family.
The primary purpose of the clan is to provide greater protection to all the extended family members belonging to the clan, primarily against other clans. A well-organized and aligned clan also has a much better chance of continuing-in-kind than does a family, and also a much better chance of prospering. A higher clan purpose -- one that might conflict with the purpose of a family, is to continue the clan, even at the expense of the individual or family. And for a clan to continue-in-kind, it is not necessary for all the individuals to form family units and procreate. Thus some individuals can be devoted to other clan service, such as warriors.
It is in the best interests of the clan that family loyalty be replaced with loyalty to the clan, and one essential method of accomplishing that is to prohibit intra-family procreation (sibling-sibling and sibling-parent marriage), and promote inter-family (cousin) marriage, which strengthens bonds to the greater clan family, and weakens intra-family bonds.
The tribe begins to specialize individuals and non-family groups as to function, such as warrior, hunter, weapon maker, cooks, teachers, and so forth. It is at the tribal level that children are gathered in non-family groups to be taught the ways of the tribe. A higher tribal purpose is to continue the tribe, even at the expense of the clan, family or individual. It is in the best interests of the tribe that clan and family loyalty be replaced with loyalty to the tribe, and one essential method of accomplishing that is to prohibit intra-clan and intra-family procreation (cousin and sibling marriage), and promote inter-tribal (2nd cousin or higher) marriage, which strengthens bonds to the greater tribal family, and weakens intra-clan and intra-family bonds. And for a tribe to continue-in-kind, it is not necessary for all the clans, families , and individuals to form family units and procreate. Thus many more individuals can be devoted to specialization of tribal services.
The state excels in the specialization of individuals and non-family groups as to function, such as warrior, hunter, farmer, weapon maker, cooks, teachers, and so forth. It is at the state level that a dedicated police force is established, laws are given, schools and curriculums are created, and compartmentalized government established. Money is created to facilitate the movement and distribution of goods and services with the state.
A higher state purpose is to continue the state, even at the expense of the tribe, clan, family or individual. It is in the best interests of the state that tribal, clan and family loyalty be replaced with loyalty to the state, and one essential method of accomplishing that is to prohibit intra-tribal, intra-clan and intra-family procreation (blood marriage to the cousin and sibling marriage), and promote unrelated individuals for marriage, which strengthens bonds to the state and weakens intra-tribal, intra-clan and intra-family bonds. And for a state to continue-in-kind, it is not necessary for all the tribes and clans to continue to exist. It may be better that tribes and clans within a state fade away as inter-tribal and inter-clan boundaries blur due to intermarriage between tribes and clans.
Transparency in government action at all levels promotes the loyalty of individuals to the state, while secrecy promotes suspicions of unfairness and favoritism, which undermine the credibility of state organizations and activities.
Simon Revere Mouer III, Seer
House of Transcendent Reality