June 2, 1019 —

Few people could debate religious fundamentalists more effectively than the late anti-theist, Christopher Hitchens (1949-2011). The Oxford-educated Hitchens was the author of over 30 books and numerous articles for publications such as The Nation, The Atlantic, and The New Statesman.

Most of Hitchens’ critiques of religion are entirely consistent with our own arguments against the “Old Religions” contained in The Book of Continuing Creation and in Blogs by its author, J.X. Mason (me).

However, in 2008, Mr. Hitchens uncharacteristically “swung and missed” when he tried to field a question from a debate moderator who asked him, “If God does not exist, what then is the purpose of life?” [1]

Hitchens replied, “Well, I’ll only answer for myself. What cheers me up? I suppose mainly gloating over the misfortunes of other people… crowing over the miseries of others… And then there’s irony, which is the cream in the coffee. Sex can have diminishing returns — but it’s amazing!  And that’s pretty much it, clear unto the grave.”

Clearly, Hitchens’ answer was very flippant. His answer was not, in my opinion, respectful toward one of the most important questions that every human being asks during their life.

Fortunately, the Book of G>O>D> does address this question is a serious manner. We say that the Purpose of Human Life is to respectfully and responsibly create. Such creating can take the forms of designing, building, exploring, discovering, learning, composing, teaching, aiding other people and aiding Earth’s biosphere.

We have written the following passages in the Overview to our Book:

“We can correctly say that our primary concern is for our ourselves and our immediate families, for this
concern is rooted in biology and mammalian nurture of children. The emotion of familial love is rightly very strong, and The Book of G>O>D> champions family values. Of course, not everyone has biological or adopted children, and childless people can admirably devote love and to their friends, their work, to causes, or to research and the arts.

“Looking beyond our connection to family and friends, it is also clear that The Growing> Organizing> Direction> of the Cosmos is manifest in human nature.  We are natural explorers, strivers, learners, builders, artists, and organizers. Therefore, the purpose of each individual human life includes contributing to the Continuing Creation that is the Growing> Organizing> Direction> of the Cosmos, by working, discovering, inventing, creating, building, sharing, learning and loving. 

“It’s about actively contributing to the positive processes of Continuing Creation.  Followers of G>O>D> are motivated to contribute to the creative process of the universe by working, discovering, creating, and inventing.  Within our Way of Continuing Creation, this intense and positive involvement in life is how we define Love, in its broadest sense.”

— J.X. Mason

[1] Hitchens versus Turek debate, 10-22-2008, at VCU, in Virginia, Full debate at http://www.vimeo.com/1904911.  On YouTuvbe — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-3fgj…)