Saturday, January 29, 2005

The Ten Commandments

As written by an atheist:

1. Thou are not so special that the universe can not exist without you consciously existing alongside it for all eternity.

2. Thou shall respect and enjoy life because it is the only one you or anyone else will have.

3. Thou shall not fill in the blanks of that which science can not currently explain with superstition or tales of the supernatural.

4. Thou shall not be so arrogant as to believe that if it can not be explained scientifically in your lifetime that it will never be explained scientifically.

5. Thou shall not let anyone tell you that death is spooky for it will not matter to you if you do not consciously exist afterwards.

6. Thou shall not judge anyone based on supernatural politics.

7. Thou shall recognize that good and evil are never cast in stone.

8. Thou shall never justify an action based on the will of a supernatural, omnipotent agent who could have done it for itself.

9. Thou shall leave consenting adults alone.

10. Thou shall not confuse an act of proselytization as an act of love.

11. Thou shall accept that there are uncertainties in everything. To be scientific is to be open to uncertainty. To be satisfied with uncertainty is to be at peace.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Anatomy of a Monotheism

The basic idea behind any western monotheistic religion is a kind of a fill-in-the-blank thought process. Basically it comes down to what people truly know and what they want to know. Let's face it, those who know everything have the potential to control everything. But since science and true empirical knowledge grows at a slow pace, there have always been and will always be holes in what is truly known. Thus the power given by what is truly known has always been limited.

This is where religion comes in. Pro Wreligion basically looks over what is truly known and they seek out the blanks (death, what came before written history, "why am I here?", the future, etc.) and they fill in the blanks with superstition and the supernatural in the form of prose and poetry. This pseudo-knowledge gives religion a greater power than what the standard scientific (tested and retested) knowledge has to offer and thus gives the organization that wields it power over those who want to know everything but have no patience - or the stomach - for the slower scientific methods.

Then as time moves forward, science begins to progress. That which was previously unknown begins to take shape under the scientific process and the religions have a problem. They've been giving their version of pseudo-knowledge for so long that if something were to come along and prove that they were wrong and that they gave out the wrong information, then perhaps they may lose all their beloved power over those who sought their help inthe first place. So religion does the only thing it can do, it digs in, clings to its superstitions and tries to hold back scientific knowledge. While it does slow it down, science typically overcomes religion as religion scrambles tries once again to keep its hold over those who still believe in its "power". Examples of this:
  1. Geocentric Solar System - GONE!
  2. Flat Earth - GONE!
  3. Creationism - Dying Fast!
Even now, as science marches forward at incredible speeds thanks to the information age, the religious are digging their heels and clinging to delusional superstitions about supernatural beings when reality is staring them in the face. But instead of accepting reality, these people choose to stay focused on a fantasy world perpetuated by a fill-in-the-blank political system with a posthumous reward system as they try desperately to fill in the blanks that science currently does not have answers for yet as a way to justify their sticking to their delusions. Examples of this include:
  1. What came before the big bang?
  2. Is there a state of existence after all metabolic processes cease?
Does science have answers for these questions yet? No. Does that give the religious cause for celebration because now they can fill in the blanks with their own brand of superstitious mumbo jumbo? OH, HELL NO! Filling in the blanks with mythological horse manure is what leads people to commit the greater atrocities such as witch burnings and other assorted human sacrifice rituals. There is no reason to accept this kind of behavior in any kind of civilized society. In addition it is folly for scientific minds to say that just because science hasn't explained everything in their lifetimes doesn't mean they wont be able to explain it a hundred years from now.

This fill-in-the-blanks pseudo-knowledge isn't faith. Its voluntary schizophrenia.

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