The meaning of life
... involves cats, doing things you enjoy, and finding appropriate ripostes for 'you are daft enough to believe us and give us your money' phonecalls and most of the people who are the subject matter of RW (making allowance for those who are useful or amusing/entertaining). 126.96.36.199 (talk) 18:56, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
"... likened to the British saying "carry on"."
Relevance to the missional criteria
Does the article 'Absurdism' serve the missional criteria? or Why does a rationalist care about 'Absurdism'?
Missional criterion (1): n/a
Missional Criterion: (2): Absurdism is not a crank idea. However, 'Absurdism' could play an indirect role in contributing to the documentation of said ideas i.e. it is conceivable that someone may hold a crank idea with regards to 'Absurdism' (as to whether this has actually occurred is another thing entirely). 'Absurdism' is largely a thesis that arises, as a consequence of the negation of the following (this list is not exhaustive, but still covers the majority of the relevant concepts): objective meaning(s), objective value(s), objective purpose(s), the universe being rational (note: typically these concepts are interpreted as absolutes not as plurals i.e., there is "one absolute meaning to life" etc.)
I think that it is trivial, that the concepts that make up the domain of discourse, for absurdism, have considerable overlap with concepts that make up the domain of discourse for cranks or religious persons or philosophers or rationalists. In fact, as an aside, one is entitled to argue that absurdism touches, as most philosophical positions do, on topics that cover a very broad array of concepts, that are close to the hearts of many. It is very plausible that crank ideas exist concerning the concepts in question, either as crank interpretations of 'Absurdism,' or more probably, as crank ideas concerning "the objective meaning(s) of life" or "the objective value(s) of life" or "the objective purpose(s) of life" or "the universe being rational" etc, etc. Thus, in conclusion, I think that 'Absurdism' serves missional criterion (2), and as a consequence, documentation of said crank ideas via methodical recording ought to be done.
Missional Criterion (3): Absurdism is not linked to authoritarianism or fundamentalism. However, a similar argument to the one provided for (2) could be used to demonstrate indirect participation and support for the exploration of authoritarianism and fundamentalism. Missional Criterion (4): So if 'Absurdism' does play the kind of role I have outlined, (and that is a big 'if?') then it could be used to satisfy (4). However due to its indirect nature, it may well be pointless, and 'grasping at straws' so to speak, trying to connect it where it is neither worth the effort (when other items could do the job more efficaciously) nor interesting enough to warrant the effort. Part and parcel of why this topic may be controversial, is that 'Absurdism' is a rather nebulous term, but this isn't to say that it isn't worth the expenditure, bringing to light, how it serves the missional criteria, and why indeed, a rationalist ought to care about it.
I think a deep difficulty with the huge majority of articles here, is the holism of the wiki. I am here affirming the view that the evidentiary-support and meaning appealed to in assessing whether an article serves missional criteria are holistic: each article plays a role with a whole collection of background articles in justifying each-other; likewise the meaning of an article is similarly dependent on whole systems of articles. We ought to be careful in cutting off limbs from our structure, as they may be more important than we prima facie think. For instance, this article on Absurdism, as I mentioned earlier, may play a very indirect role in supporting other articles, who knows what it could be relevant to? We could extend this to any articles proposed. There simply is no clear demarcation criteria (unless one considers the most obvious cases) for separating worthy articles from those that ought to be deleted. It is for these reasons that I am loathe to suggest the deletion of any article...period. — Leucippus 23:06, 19 December 2020 (UTC)
Of course it should probably be noted that Camus was hardly the first person to conceive of, or ponder on, the absurdity of the human condition. For instance, David Hume remarks, to similar affect, the following:
|[…] the whimsical condition of mankind, who must act and reason and believe, though they are not able, by their most diligent inquiry, to satisfy themselves concerning the foundations of these operations or to remove the objections which may be raised against them.|
— David Hume, An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding, p. 169