I noted Steve Harris's statement about life purpose on the Alcor site while searching the keyword population at alcor.org. It reads...
Thus, some sort of "lifework" is necessary to most people for long term life satisfaction, and the only necessary ingredient to define a "lifework" is a sense that one is doing something to organize or improve things -- in other words, something against entropy. There is even evidence that a sense of having accomplished a significant lifework is necessary to a psychologically healthy old age. Thus, despite my earlier comment about beer and television, a "lifework" is necessary even to people who do not believe that they will survive their own deaths -- in fact it is probably more important to such people.
My comment- This view doesn't seem to take into account that the continuity of mankind isn't guaranteed... that a lifework would be not only anti-entropic-- but more specificially-- would increase the potential for the power of mankind to exist. And it's more than satisfaction-- it's morality is of the highest order--- the continuation of the species would be the basis even for the continuation of the self-- in any form-- as a physical immortalist or as a digital automaton that isn't you, but a representation of you-- or even as an autobiographical book sitting for years on a dusty shelf in a library, unread.
This idea I express has been continually mocked over the years but you can see some reflections of it in the lifeboat.org site for example, or in various venues. It hasn't been specifically stated as "civiliziation continuity" or "civilization immortality" or "mankind immortality". Cryonicists are especially prone to narrowing their field of concern to black out the wider concerns of humanity as a whole, into the future... disregarding the need to power the current civilization for example with nuclear power plants... as if that has nothing to do with cryonics... and yet cryonics depends on the infrastructure that supports the current civililzation-- which is part of the human immortality mission--- which is critical to survival-- not merely inherently "satifisfying" for unstated reasons as harris seems to argue.
Harris seems to allude to something that is more like a genetically programmed behavior of "satisfaction" in doing lifework-- as opposed to a cogntively reasoned program that actually does something to increase the wellness of the species and, in turn, the wellness of ones self over time- as much time as possible. This is more than a behavior... it's the highest order of reason.
Am I right? Can you follow the argument I'm making? Or... where I am not right about this?