Wednesday, August 02, 2006

The Fool Says 'There is no God'

I just finishing watching a video for the Edge of Faith boys about this scripture 'The fool has said in his heart there is no God, they are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good' (Psalm 14:1) The person who made the video tried to make a point that these people aren't fools and they do good so this scritpture is wrong. Point noted. But it got me questioning the intentions of humanity behind the sciences (since I was told religion should hold up to science if I want to see if it is valid). This is where the premise gets murky.

There are various fields within science: Biology, Chemistry, Geology, Environmental Studies, Medicine, Physics, Computer Science, Social Sciences (ex: history, Psychology, Sociology), Political Science, and even the math's have been considered part of the equation. Now I have learned a lot from the sciences and I do place value upon their findings, however I also admit there is drawbacks. Science is not altogther an ethical stronghold to say the least. The question I put to science is 'does the good outweigh the bad'?

In the field of Biology we have come to determine that humans have evolved. We have classified animals, mammals, plants, reptiles, birds, etc. The greatest quote from evolutionary minds is 'only the strong survive'. What exactly is strong supposed to mean, I have heard that quote twisted in many ways so as to determine certain strong characteristics will remain while others dissipate due to weakness. Oddly, enough our belief in God must not be a 'weak' charateristic since it has remained with us from the beginning of civilizations. Even if we have less proof for God than we think the fact is the belief has remained. Evolution proposes no real ethic either which is problematic. Following 'only the strong will survive' and the belief we are nothing better than a 'mammal' to the Nth degree leads to a shallow ethic where scientists cross the line with no regards for humanity.

Chemistry, what can I say about you? I like the fact we know the chemical make-up of things on this planet but this has nonetheless opened a 'pandora's box'. In one hand we like to know the chemical processes behind our universe while on the other hand we have discovered new ways of war and pollution. The use of chemicals in warfare proposes such a crazy threat, unheard of in history, that all kinds of new diseases will appear from warfare. As much as I like the use of bathroom fresheners the use of chemicals in spray bottles was our first wake-up to the fact the ozone is depleting. Not to mention the use of pesticides and other forms of poisons used on weeds and agriculture that we breath in not knowing what the outcome of that will all be. We do know of certain cases in the past where chemicals have caused deformity in child-birth yet we persist that our mass use of chemicals in this age will do nothing. Cancer has spiked in the last 2 decades - along with hordes of other diseases, we can blame Mcdonald's all we want but take a good look at the amount of chemicals you use on a daily basis, I'm just saying it's worth looking into. Also I could care less about uranium and it's make-up but some physicist did.

Physics is the 'creme de la creme' of the science world. Not only do we get wonderful ideas about the universe from it, there is quantum physics, the idea of time travel, gravity, etc. Now some of these are the greatest discoveries of all time but one discovery really takes the cake, it's the one that has caused mass hysteria in humanity since it's inception...the evolution of energy. I am talking about atomic, hydrogen, and the nuclear family. If it wasn't for this discovery we wouldn't have nuclear reactors and energy sources that power plants could use that for one, completely kill the environment. Since it was so safe for the enivronment we decided we should make a human version of it, we called it a nuclear bomb. This little baby and the amount of them on earth have anough power to wipe humanity (and life in general) clean off the face of the planet not once, not twice, but 7 times over. This is the most horrific weapon known to humanity ever and is the one weapon that is both being used to control it & ensure it's destruction. It even had the inventor prophesying ''Now, I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.". If the inventor never questioned the intention then why should you. Thank you Robert Oppenheimer and all the other greats who added to his we are assured the earth will never be a safe place. Add physics + chemistry + biology + no foundational ethic = Oppenheimer's prophecy.

Medicine is one of the great sciences. It has produced both cures and prescriptions for human ailments throughout history. Medicine seems to be one of the scientific fields excelling at 'doing good for humanity'. Science used in the right frame of mind can create productive outcomes. But the field is only playing catch-up to the ills the other sciences created and it's losing by a long stretch. There is no cure for cancer, Aids, multiple sclerosis, parkinsons, dementia, schizophrenia, Post-traumatic diseases, Lupus, and a host of other diseases we have discovered. We can get pills to prolong our life but we cannot cure these ills. This field also helped to develop meth, speed, riddlin, steroids, LSD, lethal injections and other drugs that can mess up the human system. Not to mention there is host of pills on the market (just watch for the commercials) with side effects causing heart rate exceleration, side effects to pregnant mothers, nausea, severe headaches, blurred vision, and of course diarrhea. I'll also tap on anti-depressants and drugs to get me hard for 4 hours...which seem to be an emphasis these days. So I like medicine but to say it's a saviour of some sort is benign, like this tumor they can never cure.

Lastly, the social sciences & Political science, brothers from the same mother...human ideology. Now social sciences & political science have helped us to evaluate the human mind & function, our role in society, our history on planet earth, and human thought. I think these fields have tonnes of knowledge to offer and anyone wise would check it out immediately. However, the call to ethics for science comes mostly from these fields and that's also noteworthy. Psychology is alright for stating the human condition & development but beyond that it offers answers only found in medicine, okay great. I still know some pills will help balance the schizo, depressed, bi-polar, and post-traumatic but never fully cure them (and we'll settle for that). Sociology will state how we behave in societies and the problems we develop but it will turn to ideology to solve them (ex: crime, punishment, sexism, bigotry, etc). Where does ideology come from, usually a governmental system.

Political science will pose alternatives on how to live in a civil manner amongst one another, monetary beliefs, war, punishment, etc. Political science is the field that invented ethnocentricism (colonialism), poverty/class systems, slavery, warfare & the reasons behind it, land and country, nationalism, law making & court systems, land division based on a ruling system, Facism, etc. Ethically the system is flawed and will never devise something fitting for the human race, since politics is becoming more the rule of the leader and less 'for the people by the people'. I don't expect political science to hold answers to the biggest questions anyways and all they are concerned about is human existence within the structure (which may mean stripping you of freedoms like speech, religion, and ownership). However, it is this science that controls the rest of the sciences since they control the means of production - money. They both regulate business and decide on investment. So if they demand of a science they will get results, which smacks of a bias on a poiltical viewpoint. How do you think the 'bomb' came into existence? Who decides whether 'stem-cell research' is appropriate? Who will decide if euthanasia is acceptable? When the political scientists get the 'wheels' spinning they will get what they are looking for and that my friends is called an 'agenda'.

So in the end we 'the fool says in his heart there is no God, there ways are corrupt and vile, and there in none that does good'. It may appear as if there is some that do good but in the end it is humans that control the sciences and where it will peruse next. In that searching we will find the answers to many of the social ills facing society but it will also produce the next batch of dilemma's. You see we developed a bomb in a war to stop Hitler & Japan but now that bomb lays dormant waiting on it's use (which is why they build them). Even in that act of good I see the evil waiting in the wings. In my opinion science without ethical virtue is like a human with the bomb. Maybe in the end of this journey we will find out what was really meant by the ethic 'only the strong survive'.


chris said...

Great post! It seems the human race can take anything good and distort it by using it on our own selfish desires.

breakerslion said...

'The fool has said in his heart there is no God, they are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good'

And "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!"

What the H___ would you expect from a virus-like meme like religion except this kind of preemptive defense?

Why, when religion is attacked on scientific grounds does it defend on moralistic ones? That's like an argument that goes.
"Your car pollutes."
"Yes, but space is practically infinite, so it is insignificant as a percentage of the entire Universe!"


SocietyVs said...

"Why, when religion is attacked on scientific grounds does it defend on moralistic ones?" (Lion)

Only reason I wrote is because religion and ethics are so tied together and I don't see the same correlation in science...what is science tied with...the absolute un-biased search for the betterment of humanity or anything at the cost of humanity to prove a hypotheses. Either way you look at science it is tied to ethics, it's done by humans; unbelievably just like religion.

I really don't see the big deal as to why not question the ideals of science anyways. The wars we watch (and hate) around us were fueled by technology that science helped create, I think religious idiots were happy with just a sword.

curious servant said...

I love science as well... and I am willing to accept that people will do what the always do with all knowledge, good and evil.

But the idea of holding faith up to science for judgement is ridiculous.

Science has a huge blind spot that cannot begin to address the heart of faith.

Science works from the premise that all things are measureable, repeatable. I disagree.

Some things cannot be measured. How would you measure my love for my wife? How do you measure the beauty of a rose, or a nebulae, or a child? Those are thiongs we can agree are beautiful, but they cannot be quantified. They are subjective. Faith is also.

Repeatable? I believe that faith explores realms that exist beyond our four dimensional universe. Where our universe intersects another may not be a measureable or repeatable event. It is also beyond the reach of science.

Science is great. But it is only a human thing.

Breakerslion misses the point.

Foolish mistake.

Darius said...

Seems to me some things are getting mixed up here. For example, science needs to be distinguished from technology. Also, evolution as a theory is widely misunderstood. For example, it isn't just "survival of the physically strongest." Our prosocial tendencies, our abilities for communication and cooperation, have had at least as much value for our survival. If anything, today they're more vital than they've ever been...

SocietyVs said...

Daruis I don't disagree but I just wrote on the core of the matter and some of the problems I have run into with science and it's morality.

Firstly, technology and science aren't apart from one another as I have stated (or at least now I do). With all the structure for the bomb (tech) we find no impending danger, but add some physics to the mix (science) then we have a weapon for no use but to kill us. Technology is a good thing, science is a good thing, but add in human contempt for others and we can have a bad thing. So technology, as much as I love the X-box, I hate the war machines it has built...and that more often than not is coupled with scientific understandings of energy and how we can box it up into an explosion.

Evolution, I only attacked a fundamental idea but 'survival of the physically strongest' is the base core of the idea. I can communicate and cooperate and say those have become survival tools, when they aren't. I can't find one time where communication or cooperation have been used to help humanity survive, but they have been used to better society relations one with another (pro-social ideals). They cause for society to work together and understand one another, but they aren't survival mode ideals (if we compare ourselves with the animal kingdom).

Someone doesn't come to the fight with rheotoric when violence is the alternative being offered to them. Sad thing about humanity is this, it is only in violence to do we recognize 'survival' otherwise as humans we really pay it little attention. That's why I question the genius of the idea 'survival of the fittest' as a societal phenom when I think it's base core means what it means in the animal kingdom, this lion won because he had better groomed claws and teeth than a cheetah.

Thus we have the ruling systems we have til this day, in part thanks to conquest and colonialism..,other govt's succeeded in violent revoltions or suppressing their people with the threat of violence. These ruling classes we have that push evolution push it's very core 'survival of the fittest' and believe it. I think the view grew first from observation of nature and was then supplanted onto humans through observation of our world-view.

I guess my main problem is things don't always line up for evolution as they should in retrospect. I look at early Christian communities that were being slaughtered by the Roman rule of it's day. The Christian gladly went to the lion, the crucifix, was burnt alive...All of this with little protest. How can losing your life even be considered a strength at all? Oddly enough what the Romans desired (end of this religion) actually helped to strengthen it...however they have acted as strengths for this community which is a weakness to evolution.

Jim Jordan said...

'The fool has said in his heart there is no God, they are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good'

This Scripture verse speaks to us on more than one level, as many verses do.

First, with all our scientific knowledge plugged in for probability, the chances that the universe and life itself springing from nothing is zero, zilch, nada. God knows the alternative theory to a created world would be laughable, everything somehow formed itself. God is laughing at the atheistic evolutionist in advance.

Second, the worldview of such a person would be profoundly affected and the consequential choices they would make (as a result of their worldview) would be vile. That is not bigotry or some cultural virus, it simply is the truth. Fruits of god-free paradigms include abortion, euthanasia, communism, Nazism, and moral relativism.

society, As always a very thought-provoking post.

breakerslion said...

"I think religious idiots were happy with just a sword."

Wrong. Some god-or-other has always "been on the side" of both sides of every example of human conflict. Even Stalin re-opened the churches during WWII because he understood just what a tool they are. The religious control-freaks have always taken charge. There is no data to analyze in terms of a truly secular conflict. The religious among us have reached out their hands for whatever ultimate weapon has come along. There is no exemption, and all that "Prince of Peace" crap is just rhetoric. The greatest danger to this planet is the apocalyptic nature of the religious zealot that thinks the next world is his to deserve.

"If the inventor never questioned the intention then why should you. Thank you Robert Oppenheimer and all the other greats who added to his we are assured the earth will never be a safe place."

Wrong and wrong. You don't know your history, and you have fallen into a similar trap of oversimplification as did the scientists on the Manhattan Project. They were assured that the enemy was developing this, so they had to get there first. The military and the politicians are responsible for the decision to explode the bomb. I have yet to see any politician elected that did not slink into a church wearing an idiot grin for that campaign photo-op.

''Now, I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds."

Quoted out of context. The alleged god was talking about itself, not humankind.

Curious Servant:

This post and your comments seek to oversimplify and miss-identify those things that are a product of the human mind and human society. Foolish mistake.

The opening quote of this post is a typical example of the kind of bald statement that a scam uses to bind the followers to it and scourge their detractors. "Beware of imitators!" "Don't listen to any conflicting ideas!" "They are corrupt" Implying that "We" are not. Bullshit.

"Some things cannot be measured. How would you measure my love for my wife? How do you measure the beauty of a rose, or a nebulae, or a child? Those are things we can agree are beautiful, but they cannot be quantified. They are subjective. Faith is also."

First, your love for your wife can be measured in a number of ways. We can measure comparative brain activity, hormone levels, we can make conclusions based on your answers to moral dilemmas involving your wife and family. We can collect data, but is it relevant to anyone but you, and don't you already know how much you love your wife?

If faith is truly subjective, then it has no existence outside the subject's brain. I can go along with that.

A rose is not beautiful. A rose is a flower designed to attract insects for the purpose of pollination. That which you know as a rose is the product of selective breeding, and man-made to fit an aesthetic ideal that other humans agree with. It is art, using the simplest form of genetic engineering. You too, have been selectively bred. Your brain "tweaks" to the grandiose theatre and pageantry of the church, and the idea of a supreme being with a panoply of chosen ones. Those that were not susceptible to this form of manipulation were ostracized and murdered from the Stone Age forward to the present day.

I do not deny that good men have been inspired to do good things as a result of religious belief, but I would like to think that there would be good men regardless of such sources for inspiration. God-fearing? Fear of consequences is a very primitive and fragile form of morality.

I wish I had time to enumerate my problems with the Beatitudes you quote in the next post. These words were put in Jesus’ mouth because they tow the party line, and inspire people to give their money to the church. Whom do they serve but the self-legitimizing mouthpieces of the god, the Clergy?

Your religion is based on miss-direction, miss-identification, fear, and gross oversimplification. These are the tools of hucksters everywhere. Religion postulates whole armies of supernatural beings, locked in some mythical struggle between "good" and "evil" as if these concepts had some anthropomorphic personification. It takes the best and the worst of what makes us human and attributes it to supreme beings outside ourselves. It banishes us to live in a comic book universe where super heroes and super-villains battle it out with magical powers that can turn physical axioms on their ass at a whim. A universe where lead can magically become gold, and a jackass can become a pile of straw. It talks like a scam, it acts like a scam, it's a scam. Wanting it to be true does not bestow truth.

Your analysis of the sciences is based on a one-sided interpretation often put forward by religious organizations. To paraphrase C.S. Lewis, you are choosing to live among the dust and empty bottles and cans and other refuse of a modern society. Our lifestyle has a price, and if we are morally responsible enough to handle the responsibility that comes with power, that will be an accomplishment of mankind, not gods. If not, it was nice knowing you.