Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Most people have always been religious - for good reason (remarks by Carter Craft)

There have been some excellent comments at the Junior Ganymede blog by Carter Craft (who has also commented quite often here) .

CC makes some points that are obviously true when they've been stated, yet not obvious until after they have-been stated.

Here I lightly-edit two of his comments together:

Most people are not scientists and don’t do any science, only benefiting from science indirectly. Science is largely irrelevant to everyday life. 

Religion on the other hand deals with life directly, and provides answers to the problems people face every day. Yet most modern Western people are vigorously opposed not just to the answers religion provides but to acknowledging life’s questions at all. 

People actually live their lives primarily in a religious, non-physical world of moral decisions and human relationships, yet they refuse to accept this obvious fact and only consider religious ideas in the most provisional, uncommitted way possible. 

Philosophy is similar to religion in that philosophy engages with the questions of life directly; but philosophy is also too much like science - in that most people aren’t philosophers and don’t do philosophy. Philosophy is for specialists. 

Philosophy presents a trap; as those people who are philosophers and do produce satisfying answers to life’s problems try to shine a light for others so they can reach the same conclusions about life… but it never works. 

Partly this is because philosophy specializes; so it only provides very specific and very partial answers for certain areas of life (unlike religion, which is mostly comprehensive). But mainly it’s because ordinary people don’t do philosophy. 

There’s a reason most people on Earth for most of history have been religious.

NOTE: I was a late convert to Christianity, and before this I tried to live by science and philosophy; which is perhaps why this remark hit home.

The problems are that neither S nor P are adequate - because neither can justify itself - neither science nor philosophy can say why they-themselves are valid, nor why they should be made the centre of life. There is, therefore, a dishonesty woven-into the very idea of putting either of these first.

Also, I found that there are very, very few real scientists - or philosopher - nowadays; and indeed almost-all of the high status, powerful, well-known scientists and philosophers are actually corrupt careerists - in effect anti-scientists and anti-philosophers have taken-over and now 'run the show'. 

Religion can be, often is, dishonest insofar as it denies its own basis in direct intuition; but it is not a necessary nor instrinsic attribute of religion to deny its own roots. Christianity, in particular, has its strong tradition (the true tradition) in the act of conversion, a voluntary affiliation, being born-again - as origination from an opt-in.

The mainstream Christian denominations in The West have also been taken-over, subverted, and inverted by their leadership - however, the simple essence of Christianity (what it ought to be) is, consequently, perhaps clearer than ever before in the past 2000 years.

We all of us deal with the everyday problems of life - like it or no. And anyone who chooses may reject the culturally-mainstream 'provisional, uncommited' attitude to this.

All we need to do - but need means must, to get the ball-rolling'; is to take such matters seriously from a religious perspective. That's the decisive move, and the means of escape.

1 comment:

TheDoctorofOdoIsland said...

I'm honored.

Certainly the inadequacies of science aren't hard to see once a person is willing to admit them. Physics is interesting, and of value to society as a whole, but it can't help you be a better parent or overcome personal sin.

Philosophy really is a pitfall though, because philosophy can help a person find deep meaning in life and improve themselves, yet the benefits don't reach farther than the philosopher. You've discussed this before regarding Rudolf Steiner, how despite his awesome insights, his efforts to turn spirituality into a 'science' were too narrow, too specific, practically self defeating.

- Carter Craft