Thursday, February 23, 2006

Would that choosing alone could make it so

The issue of theism and a-theism is concealed by waste products and the debris of confusion. It's a desperate thing.

We are alone. Or we're in the belly of the whale of the mother. Or we're in the hands of God, who is like an insurance agent, faceless and exacting; promising great reward for our investment or at least our protection. What we know is a good place to start but we know so much, about so little. The catalog consumes whole lives of scholarship just to print. We do know these simple things:

All organic life on this planet is driven by the sun's engine. All life is composed of matter that, for all its transforming, is the same stuff of which all the rest of the visible universe is composed. The amount of sunlight that powers our lives is so small I hesitate to estimate it. Very tiny amounts of sunlight are the motivation of all living things. Very very tiny and for only half of time; the rest we turn toward the infinite reach of seemingly dark space but that darkness is itself another illusion. All we know of life comes from tiny bits of sunlight and that life is made from the same stuff as stars.

Jump to the sun's context and you have a vast number of stars out there, all spilling this wonderful powerful stuff. Keep in mind that a tiny bit runs all our doing. And there's billions of billions of those stars, each one pushing full-bore.

Now look at the self. These little neurons and synaptic connectors and the winking of electric bursts inside the brain. That's where we live, that's how we work, that's our minds and our selves; and the amount of distributed solar power that goes to that working is an almost immeasurable bit of an almost immeasurable bit of the power of the mass of stars. A mass likely to be an immeasurable bit on a higher order of something still further. And so on... It is certainly possible, even likely, that the organization and consciousness within us, may be a miniaturization of the order beyond us. The teaching of organized religions, which all appear to think they have a trademark copyright on the concept of God, is mostly brute muttering against the dark, and thuggish seduction and promises of security. To a lot of people the idea of theos (or God) is too closely associated with the powers that be, cowards, and ignorant, unquestioning people. This leads to nonsensical debates and directly away from what is purports to lead toward.

You may believe that the moon doesn't spin in its orbit, and you may believe that the stars are small objects just beyond Jupiter and that all heavenly bodies circle Earth. I may not listen to you about anything else once I know how wrong you are about what's going on with the sun and the stars, but that doesn't mean you're wrong about the moon.

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