Answer to Question #49086 in Other Philosophy for Callum
What is the meaning of life?
Trajectories in discussions of life’s meaning within contemporary analytic philosophy:
Supernaturalism Supernaturalist theories are views that meaning in life must be constituted by a certain relationship with a spiritual realm. If God or a soul does not exist, or if they exist but one fails to have the right relationship with them.
Naturalism Subjective naturalists believe that there are no invariant standards of meaning because meaning is relative to the subject, i.e., depends on an individual's pro-attitudes such as desires, ends, and choices. Roughly, something is meaningful for a person if she believes it to be or seeks it out.
Objective naturalists believe that meaning is constituted (at least in part) by something physical independent of the mind about which we can have correct or incorrect beliefs. Obtaining the object of some variable pro-attitude is not sufficient for meaning, on this view.
Nihilism According to nihilism (or pessimism), what would make a life meaningful either cannot obtain or as a matter of fact simply never does.