Life doesn't inherently have meaning. People tend to feel entitled to some reason being behind everything in existence but such is not the case. Then the perceived struggle to apply some form of logic that satiates our demands for reason sets in. Life is simple in reality; we were born at some point because our mother carried our genetic code to fruition in pregnancy. We then had the instincts to be fed and nurtured by whomever cared for us. As time carried onward our consciousness sets in, yet, our instincts for survival remain for the entirety of life (I say instincts since the contemplation of suicide is entirely separate from them. "Them" being, our intrinsic seeking out for places of comfort, sources of food an so on. ). There isn't some logical purpose beyond simple life or death and our initial comprehension of that fact leads to denial, then leading to religion or some other form of self-deception of the fact. The anxiety created by comprehending that we will eventually not have another day to wake up to grows and grows until we submit to some form of ignorance, religion, or nihilism. Which isn't a zero-sum spread of options. In ignorance we simply find a good distraction in life that will reciprocate into each day. Thus, fulfilling the perceived need to forget the undeniable fact of time marching alongside us to the moment we are deceased. Religion will promise that in death we are suddenly endlessly pampered, or tortured, or existing for no reason beyond well crafted stories about some god or gods that created a planet for self-aware mammals. And nihilism is accepting there isn't some grand scheme to us on our rock floating around a thermonuclear ball of energy emitting gravitational force and heat radiating from it at just the right distance. I guess I'm part of the latter to simplify things (though the stigma that* brands me and my words with will quickly discredit all I have said. *nihilism). Without religion despair sets in when our thoughts wander to our mortality. So we tend to gravitate to the local source of salvation which is present in different guises worldwide.
On another tangent, death is the common root from which the demand for a reason/meaning/whatever comes from. the notion of dying and the finality of it is soul-crushing (for me at least, definitely) a moment of instantaneously nothingness. No senses, no thoughts, nothing but a corpse. The guarantee of time passing onward endlessly without you. There is no solace to be had in comprehending this. Inevitable nothingness for eternity. I get swept up in the understanding of all my actions being truly inconsequential, slightly empowering tbh. Society pressures that the moment is definitive of life. Those catch lines such as "life isn't measured by the breaths you take but the moments that take it away" being sold to anyone who would listen. Of course we swallow those lines, its too appealing not to. Too comforting, like stuffed animals and warm blankets to a toddler overcome with lethargy. Yet those catch-phrases serving as placebo mantras to guide us to complacency serve no real purpose now do they? Not in the face of the deceased past or doomed to be. All you really can do though is find a way to get your mind off of death and if you cant ... find a way to cheat it, in which case good luck. Sorry about the long, redundant and really pretentious sounding-in retrospect-post, I tried to be sincere in my reply and even omitted some tangents about "the self" and how we are the sum of all outside stimulus from birth. (Yes, I've never posted on a forum before... at least that I can remember, just like creepin'