Why Are We Here: Richard Dawkins

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In this short documentary, Dawkins takes a look at the purpose of human existance and asks the earthshaking question – Why are we here?

Pointing out that religious stories of human purpose fail miserably, Dawkins indicates that science may be able to offer a better explaination for human existance. Starting out with Darwin, he claims that Darwin’s theory of evolution may offer the only explaination for humanity’s raison d’état that we are likely to ever get.

Many religious believers may claim that answers for our existance offered by evolution theory mean that humans are nothing special, that we are just another species of animal. They are, of course, correct in saying that we are just another animal species but this does not necessarily mean that are not special.

Clearly humans are different from our animal brothers in that we have the ability to ask questions like why are we here. This also means, however, that with our ‘specialness’ comes extraordinary responsibilities. This brilliant documentary helps clarify some of the arguments made by evolution and is in no way just more of the same from Dawkins.

Why Are We Here: Richard Dawkins, 7.9 out of 10 based on 63 ratings

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  • Alex

    Dawkins says basically that purpose is just what we create. And purpose came around because we forced our evolution to go faster and that we could use our goal making and technology for thing other than natural selection, according to Dawkins. So the only way he could say that there was no purpose to the universe before we made one was by making a new definition of the word purpose.

    I think if he is going by how complex or intelligent what we do is evidence for purpose there is a lot more purpose for human life coming from outside of us with all the systems of perpetual motion and stuff in nature than just in our own ideas and inventions.

  • Hershy

    This documentary was not very satisfying. As Dawkins said, our purpose is basically to create stuff and figure stuff out in the world. Not that that isn’t interesting and fun to do, but I believe there is more (coming from an atheist viewpoint.) Even Dawkins admitted that we explored the from far abyss of space all the way down to the human cell and even lower than that like subatomic particles… and we are still not satisfied. Let me emphasize: STILL NOT SATISFIED. We will never be fulfilled with exploring, because once we figured something out or come to a solution, there is always something else to explore. We need to stop expanding outward. I want to emphasize that we need to look WITHIN. Find more things out about ourselves. And beyond that, love others. That is the purpose, I believe: to love. We need to focus more on philosophy and psychology.

  • Anonymous

    Good job, professor! I totally agree with you.
    The purpose, for itself, does not exist. My life hasn’t got some particularly defined meaning just by coming into existence. I am here in this world now, but the world will go on without me. Yet, I will have no consciousness of that and the world ‘ends’ for me with my existence.
    We give our lives a meaning and the ‘greater good’ will be whatever we’ve left behind to remain for the world.

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    • memnexus81

      I’m not very affected by the humor,
      but that kind of sums it up

      • memnexus81

        In addition to this:

        –> Perfection has always to be seen in relation to the situation
        (–> Perfection is the key to a keyhole)

        –> while evolutionary beings come around with picklocks;

        and the humans special ability is that he isn’t really perfectly made for anything, but pretty well for a lot of things
        and can through his imagination come up with a lot of picklocks!

        -…
        ..–> about the evolutionary working:

        it is not like a hurricane blowing through a scrapyard assembling a bowing 77

        –> more like a lump of clay in an flat stormy environment becoming a ball

  • Trey

    Terrible. Waste of my life.

  • Trey

    Terrible. Waste of my life.

  • Pingback: Life After Death « Neodecaussade’s Weblog

  • Will

    This documentary would be most beneficial to a person who is new to this way of thinking. 

    • memnexus81

      ..agreed

  • Philip Camilleri

    I cannot understand why Prof. Dawkins knows so much about Darwin and nothing about Jesus Christ????????????????

    • Nye

      He knows plenty about Jesus Christ, along with many other fairy tales that our ancestors have come up with in order to try and understand life. He understands Jesus Christ as a myth, and science as a truth.

      • memnexus81

        I don’t go along very well with the mocking of religion as a fairy tail,

        -altough I understand, that way of humans nature and that there can be considerable reason to resent religious believe
        (when fanatic individuals just use their religion as excuse or disguise to act recklessly act out their personal compulsions; ..justify their violence!)

        [...

        --> from a different view, this also can be a very interesting matter about the human minds ways of working!]

        personally I am somewhere around the lines of an agnostic and don’t intend to but to much thought in that religious stuff:

        –> To me it all comes down to figuring out a way of how people -with all their differneces can find a way of living together in a joyfull way!!! !!! !!!

  • memnexus81

    …Maybe I coud say more! – but it just won’t come out!

    I’d put it that way, that our reason in life is to make the world a better place for living..

    - make the best out of it!

    –> and to do that we need to put in consideration all the different aspects of what it means to be a human beiing,
    -the ups and downs someone can expierence during his lifespan and what we as society can expect from others.

    … ..
    and the other thing is that we should explore the world we live in and grasp our potential possibilities.

    [authors note:

    feel a bit like I forced out this comment, --> later: update / edit. ..?]

  • M

    I challenge Dawkins to go spend a month in Peru doing Ayahuasca ceromonies. That would shake all of his theories to dust.

  • M

    Guys, the Ayahuasca plant I. Peru knows more than mankind combined, about reality, and the nature of God. expecting man to understand the nature of reality is like asking the bacteria in your stomach to comment on Mozart.

  • chip griffin

    he new he was lying with his first word all the way until his last period. each will answer for their self…