From Joseph P.Carter at the New York Times:
Entropy is antagonistic to intrinsic purpose. It’s about disorder. Aristotle’s world and pretty much the dominant understanding of the physical universe until the Copernican Revolution is all about inherent order and permanence. But the universe as we understand it tells us nothing about the goal or meaning of existence, let alone our own. In the grand scheme of things, you and I are enormously insignificant.
But not entirely insignificant.
For starters, we are important to each other. Meaning begins and ends with how we talk about our own lives, such as our myths and stories. Sean Carroll, a prominent cosmologist and theoretical physicist at the California Institute of Technology, makes this case in his recent book “The Big Picture.” Fashioning himself the “poetic naturalist,” Carroll argues that meaning and purpose “aren’t built into the architecture of the universe; they emerge as ways of talking about our human-scale environment.” Even materialists can’t deny the fact that purposes somehow exist to give us meaning and happiness.
Anthropologists like Dean Falk recently suggested that goal-directed behavior is also evolutionarily advantageous. This doesn’t imply that evolution itself has a purpose, of course. (Though some have argued otherwise.) What it does suggest is that as purposeless as human evolution is, we generally benefit as a species from a belief in it. More.
A sharp high school student should be able to see through this. If everything that exists is a natural phenomenon, then obviously, that “everything that exists” can’t care about anything. And the human belief that we “care” is an illusion, of course. That sense of purpose is, we are told, “evolutionarily advantageous.”
So it is advantageous to be self-deceived, even though there s no deceiver and no deceive-ee.
The New York Times in its present state is the right home for the current stage of the naturalist descent into the void.
See also: How naturalism rots science from the head down