In my opinion life is better without a god. Religions always try to tell you what your purpose is, But in reality, You make your own purpose. Your purpose can be to travel the world and help the less fortunate. Your purpose can be to write books that inspire people. Your purpose can be whatever you want it to be! Don't let anyone tell you what your purpose in life is. If god does exist and the purpose is to just worship him and have faith in him then why would we want to live?
Purpose is subjective, And a matter of perspective. Sure, There may be an intended purpose to an object, But that does not mean that is the object's sole purpose. Likewise for us, There is no objective purpose. To put it bluntly, There is no actual purpose, Just as there is no such thing as objective morality, Nor is anything objectively good or bad. Things can be favorable and unfavorable in certain ways, But nothing is just black and white. Purpose varies from person to person. We make that purpose, Whether we live to achieve a dream, Live for another, Etc. The argument that God gives people purpose, Is a cheap one, But understandable. Many people want guidance, Want someone to guide them by the hand. Having a template, Such as worshiping a god, Can certainly help them. Give them something to look towards, Live towards, But once they realize it is all smoke and mirrors, That there is no such thing as an afterlife and that death is final, That purpose is up to them to make. Live your life how you want to.
When humans search for meaning beyond our planet, We seek for life, Not God. Being alive is assumed, But without it there is no capacity to search for any purpose, Let alone God. Meaning is derived from value - that which has value forms the basis for all purposeful actions. Life is the only requirement without which no purpose can exist, And therefore valuing life is the only universal purpose for living beings.
No one has any real answers. Blind faith in an archaic assumption is pretty worthless, But we all have our particular hobbies don't we?
I propose that the evolution of matter is a continuous loop or chain of events and organic life is an essential link in that chain of events. Maybe we assist in the creation of a God like device which is essential to the regeneration of matter at the final point of universal collapse.
Of course everything could just be pure chance. Who knows?
If one did not believe in a God, One would not feel the necessity to follow any divine code. Therefore, One would be defining his/her own purpose as long as he lives, But that purpose would not be able to extend past death as does the purpose of life in a believer of some sort of God. One would not need to fulfill anything other than his own goal, Rather than a universal meaning. This "it is what you make of it" sort of attitude does not strike me to sufficiently cover an overall umbrella term for purpose of life.
As a person who has struggled all my life to find a point to this existence, Who has often struggled with suicidal and self-destructive tendencies, And who spent much of my 50+ years as an agnostic, I can only say that I have not found a purpose for life other than serving God. Maybe others can-- and maybe that can be ultimately fulfilling over the long term. That didn't work for me. And I look at the rising rates of suicide, Overdose, Antidepressant use, And mass violence, And I don't see our materialistic focus being very successful.
I see that someone wrote, "The purpose of life is to value life. " I find that to be a circular argument. If I don't value my own life because it has no purpose, How then can I find purpose by valuing life?
I will add this: I followed Buddhism for a number of years. They didn't tell me what to believe, But they taught me that if I followed certain practices, I would come to know the truth. I did, Though the results were not what they expected. I now have no doubt that God exists and is present in the world, And that "the peace that passes all understanding" is not only possible, But available to all.
The word "can" tells me the asker believes the answer is no. The word "purpose" tells me she believes the meaning of life is singular and seemingly functional and this word also usually has religious implications which brings me to "God" which obviously tells me she believes in God.
I think a more appropriate question might be "What meaning is there to life without God? " This way we view Human more realistically as dynamic, Complex beings rather than singular functioning beings like machines designed to do or produce one thing. We leave ourselves open to more than one, Less than one or exactly one answer. And we still include the very important implication of God's role in all of this. Actually, It seems foundational to the premise of the asker so I think i'd like to see alittle more emphasis on it.
So the final revised question. . . "What meaning is there to life without God and What meaning can God bring to one's life? "
Actually I just realized this is a "yes or no" sort of thing. In that case, The super final revised version would be "Is there meaning to life without God? " Actually this question isn't too much beter than the original. This question should be in the debate or forum section. Beautiful question; it just seems to be more of a divergent rather than a convergent issue.
Anyway getting to my actual answer. I believe yes absolutely there is meaning to life without god. Instead of living my life asking "what do i mean to god? " which i believe the answer is nihil because i do not believe in him. Then i ask "What do i mean to the universe? " to which i believe the answer is either nihil or I don't know but it might be awesome. Then i ask myself "What do i mean to myself and humanity? " and to that the answer is everything. I love myself and humanity more than i can articulate and that passion inside me is more enough for me live an entire life of exquisitely harnessed enthusiasm for life and still regret not being brave enough to live more passionately.