The Gross National Debt

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Be glad to question those answers for you...

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When I go to prison (which I do regularly) and I talk with the guys there, I always wrap my discussion with the following:

Does anyone have any comments, observations or questions?

I tell 'em if they have questions, I will do my best to get an answer. But, there are some things I simply cannot answer.

Now, I tell you that statement is a bedrock foundation of both the hardest science and the most devout religious belief and everything between the two.

At this point, I shall now be assailed by the far ends of the Science v. Religion debate. To defend myself, I ask only: How do you know?

Look long enough and hard enough at the answer to that last question and you will come up with more questions. As I understand it, this is a fundamental tenet of science. More than one researcher with an alphabet behind his or her name as told me "the more answers we get, the more questions we have."

This is also a fundamental aspect of any religion, at least those I know about. Religion, faith, is a journey, say the religious leaders. A continuing effort to both get better and obtain a clearer understanding of the religion. Indeed, "the more answers we get, the more questions we have."

Someone is still gonna argue against me.

OK. For those of you on the side of science, explain gravity. WAIT! Gravity may not exist!

"That's just a theory," you say.

E=MC2 much? Tachyon much?

For those of you on the side of religion, tell me why a newborn baby is born riddled with cancer and lives less than a month after birth.

Reincarnationists will point to something bad the newborn did in a previous life. Others will say God works in mysterious ways, which amounts to the same thing.

Y'all in religion just proved my point, which is below.

Science and religion, at the core, both attempt to explain reality. Both do a pretty lousy job of it, if what they are after is solid and concrete answers. Standing back to take a truly objective look at both (at least as objective as I can), both of 'em are ludicrous. And now I have infuriated both sides again.

In previous columns, I have thoroughly illustrated the flaws, failings and massive shortcomings of both throughout history. That weight of history indicates both belief systems, because that is what they are, are the work of human beings trying and failing to make sense of the world around them.

And there is my point. We are humans and we try to understand things beyond our comprehension. We divide into camps and staged pitched battles and wars to prove who is right and who is wrong when we all we have are a changing set of beliefs.

Here's an idea - rather than argue and get mad at each other, how about we agree that we're all in this together and pool resources to try and arrive at some real answers?
yeah, well, I can still hope, which is another quintessential human activity.

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