A Case for Chaos
Added final thoughts 3-4-2018
A Case for Chaos
1.Case for chaos as opposed to a case for the creator.
2.Papua new guinea.
4.Learning to observe
6.Prayer. What do we ask for? What prayers are answered.
7.That’s God’s will. The answer to every question.
8.What is a “soul”? Do animals have souls?
9.Are we the most intelligent species on the planet, simply because we have the power to destroy any other species?
A Case for Chaos
Recently, I viewed a documentary film, titled “Case for a Creator”. It contained several credible arguments that allow science and theology to exist in peace. One of the basic requirements for this coexistence is that we accept present knowledge as complete, and infallible. We think we have a basic understanding of the universe, when, we are unable to see past our own galaxy in one direction. We think we can estimate the total mass of the universe, with an already flawed view in at least one direction, simply by adding zeros to an estimated number. After a few calculations, we find there is more matter present than we are able to account for, and there seems to be no explanation for that. We named that, “Dark Matter”.
Even though we use it, we don’t understand how electricity works, despite all our hi tech creations, and we don’t understand how gravity works, or whether gravity is the same mechanism that prevents rapidly spinning electrons from leaving their respective atoms, provided that atoms are truly constructed in this way. There are so many things that we don’t understand, and, yet, you can ask 95 percent of the people on this planet to explain God, or the lack of One, and everyone has an explanation of their very own, that they believe to be true, beyond a shadow of a doubt.
Papua, New Guinea
When I was a young boy, National Geographic did an article on some people, previously, undiscovered, in an isolated jungle, in Papua, New Guinea.
When we first discovered them, they were naked, and lived very much the way we imagine that cave men lived, hunting, and gathering. They were unaware that there were any other people on the planet, and unaware that they were inhabitants of a planet. Killing other humans was a way of life, and determined who controlled any given territory. Most importantly, for this discussion, they were unaware that there was a creator.
Today, the children, and children’s children have cell phones, and Dallas Cowboy T-shirts. They have been introduced to Christianity, and other beliefs and, these beliefs were accepted or rejected, based on the cognitive process that goes on in every brain. We are similar in many ways, but the difference in our cognitive processes, from one individual to another, will not allow agreement. I believe that being curious about a creator is not a natural curiosity. We are drilled from birth that there is a god, and He expects certain things from us. God is something different in each of the different cultures that I have encountered, in my travels. I have seen organizations with small followings, that believe that they are saved, and everyone else on the earth is condemned. How arrogant! The point I want to make here is that everyone thinks that they are right. This brings up the next topic.
Every living thing has an organ that controls every function of itself. In larger organisms, it is readily identifiable, and is called “the brain”. As humans, we consider our brains to be the most intelligent of any species. We are, as yet, unable to measure intelligence, as it presents itself in many ways. Some people classified as “idiot” have powers of observation, and certain capabilities which we are unable to understand. Savant is the word used along with “idiot”. We are able to detect activity in the brain in the form of electrical signals. We think the electrical signals are what drive every function, but we don’t know where the signals originate, or if they are even a necessary part of the cognitive process, or a byproduct. We are capable of measuring things we can detect, but there are new things becoming detectable, every day, and each new discovery usually contradicts something we previously accepted as fact.
Researchers can’t make up their minds if one glass of wine, or ten cups of coffee, every day, is good for you, or not. We say certain things that we indulge in shorten our lives, but the longest lived folks we know, indulged in those very things. Case in point: The press interviewed a man 108 years of age. He attributed his longevity to as many as twelve cigars a day, and a shot of whiskey in his coffee. I don’t recommend it for everyone, but some folks can get away with that. The point being that we are different in ways we don’t yet understand.
I was raised by a military man who proved by physical force that what he said was infallible. I was taught in school that the things that I read in my textbooks were correct, without question. I joined the military during the Viet Nam war, and was taught to do as instructed, no questions asked. When I got out of the military, and was able to question things, with no dire consequences, I went completely overboard, and I began to question everything. As a child, Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny were very real to me. When I was old enough, the idea of worship was presented to me. There was evidence of Santa Claus. He always ate the cookies and drank the milk I left for him. The Easter Bunny always left a basket for each child, and paused to lay eggs in the yard. And the proof for God was “the Holy Bible” (King James Version). Santa and Peter Cottontail let me down, but everyone continued to insist that God existed. We prayed to God, and God answered our prayers. ?????
For many years of my life, I have maintained an aquasphere of one type or another. I have raised fish with varying degrees of success. I have always wondered if my fish were aware of me as omnipotent. They are certainly aware of me as a provider, with control over life and death. They, however, are unaware of what is taking place on the other side of the room. We humans are in a similar situation. The one big difference is that there is no apparent benefactor. The most horrible things imaginable happen, every day. We are reliant on ourselves, and each other, to provide the necessities of life, much like the fish in the wild. God will not provide, with no effort on our part!
A friend of mine from my childhood is amused by this apparent lack of a benefactor. He says that God continues to hide Himself from both the wise and the foolish. Our mothers belonged to the same religious organization. We were raised, believing in God, and accepting what we were taught as the “truth”. From our childhood, we went our separate ways. We were exposed to drastically different classes of people. I had the opportunity to travel around the world, and have seen the dregs of humanity in every corner of the earth. Each one of these corners is a different fish tank, with the majority of the occupants, unaware of the outside of the tank. I see the earth itself as a fish tank. We are unable to see far enough to know if there are, in fact, any other fish tanks.
Learning to Observe
As I grew up, I realized that there were a tremendous number of people that use the bible as their source of guidance. But not all of them agreed about very much of anything. Opinions varied to the degree where different bibles were created to satisfy the needs of dissidents. Latter day saviors appeared, and before we knew it, our beliefs were being challenged. Allah emerged, and Buddha, and, cows became sacred, and Ganesh, the elephant reincarnation of one of India’s most important gods is worshipped by more people than there are Christians, aside from Catholics. The most populous Christian faith would be Catholic. They are always in trouble, but nobody seems to mind. They created their own bible, and chose to worship Jesus’ mother, Mary.
Even though China is the most densely populated country, there are a variety of religions practiced. The recently most popular religion is the worship of “Mazu”, the goddess of the sea. There are probably more Mazu worshippers than there are Christians, but a count is made difficult by the communist ruling party. The communist party would prefer to have their leader worshipped, but, they do allow the half dozen religions to flourish, due to rebellious resistance. These numbers change regularly. To see an up to date estimate, see http://www.petesmemories.com/religpop.html
As I write, The “History Channel” is airing a series called “Secrets of the Bible”. It reveals a text, known as the Apocrypha. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apocrypha) It is another version of the Bible, plus or minus a few writings, which were considered “too radical” and were not included by the group of scholars, which decided the final content of the Bible. The book of Enoch was not included, the content, it was decided was too farfetched. Enoch wrote that God is helpful to mankind. The Gnostics, advocates of the Apocrypha, utilize the lost books of Phillip, and Thomas, whose writings were considered heresy by authorities.
We allow the majority to rule in our society. Does that mean that the religion with the most people in it is right? This is where that brain of ours starts complicating things. Among Christians, the Catholics have the most worshippers, There are mostly Christians in both North and South America, among them, mostly Catholics of one form or another. But the majority of earth’s population doesn’t think of the gods as creators, but more as deities that protect, such as the Chinese Goddess of the sea, who is the protector of sailors and fishermen, and folks that depend on the sea. We call this “idolatry”, and the “King James Version” frowns upon idolatry. The government is communist, and advocates atheism.
It’s hard to tell how Catholics feel about idolatry, but the worship of Mary vigorously waves a red flag.
If the majority rules, then we are short one creator. One in five humans, on this earth, is Chinese. There are Christians and other religions present in China, but the majority are atheist. India, the second most populated country, worships Ganesh, the elephant.
So far this discussion has talked about “God”, and worship. There has been no discussion on a creator, or Supreme Being. Is it possible for there to be a creator that doesn’t require us to worship him (her, it?). This “God” would allow everyone to “do their own thing”.
Christians have ancient manuscripts, explaining how the earth was formed, and populated, and re-populated after the great flood. It talks about an angry, jealous God that seems, to me, anxious to punish for all eternity. I am convinced that man fashioned God in his own image. All we have are writings of man, and I, more than anyone, am aware of the fallibility of man. Add to that the fact that all of those manuscripts required translation, and the translators had great difficulty agreeing on the meaning of things. That probably doesn’t account for evolution in a language. Take for example the word “gay”. Fifty years ago it was an innocuous word, meaning happy. Today it has a different meaning. Our language has evolved to a point where it is difficult for a foreigner to understand our spoken language.
A final thought;
I am acquainted with many people that accept the bible, without question. I present to you, if we were born to Islam, would the Koran be as easy to accept? I have no interest in comparing two writings which have doubtful validity. I just wonder why you would believe one and not the other.
I hope you will find my observations interesting. I resist discussing religion and politics, as it appears to ruffle feathers. Just like everyone else, I truly believe that I am right. I just happen to believe very differently than everyone I know. I believe there are more possibilities than most people are willing to admit when it comes to the subject of creation. To me, most humans have varying degrees of tunnel vision. It is difficult to remember just how narrow my vision was. I remember occasionally paying attention to my peripheral vision, but not focusing on it. It wasn’t until I learned to do that could I see past the things being placed in front of me by narrow minded people. This opened up my world, and had a big effect on my attitude. I could compare it to the relief expressed by someone who has found Jesus. It is comforting to me to believe that if there is a creator, He might not require us to worship Him. I think He would let us know, if He did.
As an alternative to a creator, it has been suggested that we were planted on earth by alien species. I have been asked, “Who created the aliens?”, and I ask you, “Who created the creator?”. There seems to be no beginning or end. I have entertained the idea that our visible universe with all of the visible galaxies may be cells in the thumbnail of some infinitely gigantic organism.
I enjoy watching a zoom of Mandelbrot sets. It allows me to imagine infinity. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3-PwNlkozR8 This is a zoom out. You will find others that zoom in, appearing to approach infinitely small. I also love google earth. You can zoom out from an auto in your driveway, until the earth appears the size of a baseball. It gives a rough idea of how small we are, in the scheme of things. But, in order to feel even smaller, we can look at this amazing photo taken by one of our spacecraft. It is the earth in a beam of light, taken far beyond earth’s orbit. Dust in the wind! https://youtu.be/tH2w6Oxx0kQ
You can read his words at http://www.thinkartificial.org/aesthetics/the-pale-blue-dot/
I will include them here. Very interesting thoughts, worthy of your attention!
That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there — on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors, so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.
Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand. It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.
In memory of Carl Sagan. His moment of being continues to inspire.
When we look back at ourselves from, let’s say, the Andromeda galaxy, our entire solar system becomes too small to imagine, let alone, see. Our greatest endeavor seems to be to spread our afflicted species throughout the universe. If there is a God, I seriously doubt that He would allow us to do that. We are so hopelessly flawed that it is hard to imagine that a creator, with such awesome power, would fail so miserably with our design. There are very few good things to be said about human beings. We are cruel to other species, and each other. We even have trouble treating our own family members with the common decency they deserve. We argue with one another about our religious beliefs. but, fail to practice what we preach. Anything that man has a hand in needs to be met with scrutiny. With all of our “technology”, we still have trouble “getting things right”!
I don’t expect my question to ever be answered, I only wish to leave you with a thought: Does what we believe depend on what we were raised with, and what part of the world we come from??? If we can overcome this stigma, the universe has a lot to offer, if we will only accept!
Both sides, now
As you can see, religions are purely matters of opinion. The strongest believers, it seems to me, to be the ones familiar with their own point of view, and no others. Once people start seeing both sides of the issue, opinions begin to change. It would be foolish of me to think that my opinion would be anything other than that, an opinion. I do not have a mission in life to bring everyone to my way of thinking. Being allowed to think anything we like, correct or not, is one of the greatest freedoms known to mankind. I do have a mission in life. It is, and has always been, to present as many sides to an issue as I am able to find. I urge you to watch “A Case for a Creator”. I also urge you to watch a production named ”Religulous”. It is a creation of Bill Maher. If you are offended by strong language, then I would not recommend that you try to see this. If you are offended by strong language, you have probably already made up your mind.
Be sure to see;
There are endless sources of study, and like my friend says, If there is a God, he continues to hide Himself from the foolish and the wise. Men have spent lifetimes trying to prove, one way or another, if there is a God. There is no evidence, one way or another, only the writings of man.
Here are two writings. (Productions, actually.) It is not accurate to call them “opposing views”, but they both ask the kind of questions that must be answered, if there is a conclusion to be drawn.
A case for a creator. A video is available at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tYLHxcqJmoM
Religulous. A video is available at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eZpREDn4NFA
I recommend that you purchase both videos, and watch them together, in order to achieve the full effect of the opposing views,
Books included had backing
Book of enoch too farfetched god is helpful to mankind
Gnostics lost books phillip Thomas incongruent ruled heresy destroyed by authorities baptism ruled unnecessary different form of Christianity merges other religions 1896 discovered gospel of mary magdeline testimony of truth serpent is hero for revealing knowledge god had wife Asherah purged from Hebrew embraced by gnostics
Abram’s wife birthed Isaac Ishmael, servent’s son was exiled descendent was Mohammed, Islam’s connection to Abraham
Wise and Foolish
2-14-2018 9:18 AM
Hi Terry - It was great to catch up with you yesterday. Let's try hard to not lose touch.
You mentioned something I said about the Wise and Foolish and I had to go back and research what the Bible said about that topic. I found the quote in Mathew Chapter 11 and verse 25 which reads:
25At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. 26Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do.
The context was Jesus had performed miracles but some people still did not believe him. He did miracles to prove he was sent by God the Father, but that was not enough for some to believe. "These things" appear to be simple truths about "who" Jesus was and what was the message he was conveying.