Why are we here? Why do we live? What is the meaning of life? These questions are poorly phrased as neither “why” nor “meaning” has a distinct definition.
To begin with “why”, it can refer either to the cause of something happening or the purpose for which something was done by an agent. Causality vs. teleology, to use big words. And in the present context, the question “why” can be dismissed for both senses of the word. Teleology: humans/animals/plants/protists are not given life for any particular purpose and there is no agency involved. Causality: the answer to the question “Why am I here?” is “Because your parents had sex”.
What about “meaning” then? It can mean “message”, or “purpose”, or “justification”. We’ve already dismissed the notion that there is any external purpose to human life. As for justification, nothing alive needs justification since life is a spontaneously occurring thing. What is the justification of a pebble? As to the message of life or of a life, that’s up to each individual. Nobody made you alive in order to send any messages to you or to the world.
So to my mind, and I know I’m far from the first to come to this conclusion, the question of the meaning of life is meaningless. What is the meaning of life? What is the kliboque of zatanareho? Urdle boing foosu yukyuk? Who put the ram in the rama-lama-ding-dong?
To many people, particularly those of a religious bent (like so), the idea that there is no meaning to life is horrifying. They may associate it with suicidal, antisocial, homicidal tendencies. Not so. Even though there is no external meaning offered to us, we are all free to choose the purpose, message, justification of our lives. I live to have fun with those I love, taking care not to do so at the expense of others’ pain or fear.
Life just is. I just am. Now, you may ask “How should I live?”. That’s a much more cogent question, and one about which I have strong opinions. But I’m not going to preach about that.