I think the reason why so many more people in this generation are depressed than in previous generations is that we are realizing that religious beliefs don’t make a lot of sense. Without religion, though, there really is no point to human existence. So, basically, we’re all just going through one big existential crisis.
I dont like the implication that theres no purpose for secular people. Yes some people do believe there is no purpose or cant find one, however a large amount of secular individuals would disagree(and are very happy).
For me, I find purpose everywhere. My main purpose is to do as a little damage as possible(and maybe help along the way). But every role I have, maybe even every moment, has a different purpose.
My purpose as an educator will be to teach kids how to pursue their own good and purpose.
My purpose as a care taker is to comfort, teach, supply happiness and play, and sometimes even discipline. Those acts are pretty important because the three and seven year old in my house are going to grow into a 23 and 27 year old and they’re going to find and decide their purpose, and thats going to affect the rest of the world.
My purpose is to take responsibility for my actions, live deliberately.
My life has a lot of meaning and a lot of purpose. Other secular individuals feel the same(with their own definitions).
Secularism, atheism, agnosticism, being irreligious- none of that leads to depression or to feel useless like you dont have a purpose. The belief that you dont have a purpose might- and even then some people manage believing there is no purpose at all and continue to maintain happiness and content.
I’m sorry if you feel lost without religion. I hope you can find your way- find beliefs that work for you(whatever they may be) and give you a fair chance at pursuing happiness.