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Sunday, June 28, 2015

IN THE BEGINNING, MAN CREATED GOD


The above comes from Aqualung by Jethro Tull, not a person, but a British rock band.  The group first formed in 1967 and Aqualung has been referred to as "extremely profound."

However, you can trace the concept back through Bertrand Russell, Friedrich Nietzsche, certainly to the time of the ancient Greeks and, almost sure early in the development of hominoids, for the logic makes more sense than the reverse, for, then, who created God?  

There are, of course, books on this subject.  And Man Created God by Selina O'Grady's goes back to the time of Jesus and is pedantic, in a religious sort of way.  And Man Created God by Robert Banks, observes more from the New Atheist point of view.  The problem is that both authors are Christian scholars and approach the subject as if The Bible and its characters were real.  They kind of miss the whole point of this controversy.

Yes, there is a lot more.  Another And Man Created God was written by Schlomo Shaham, professor of law and a criminologist.  He has published more than a hundred books.

You can buy AMCG for $75 from Amazon, but, according to this link, you also can get it for free.  I lost interest in this reference because it:  presents a new theory of mytho-empiricism based on the mythological concepts of Claude Levi-Strauss and the structuralism of Jeanne Piaget.  

Ah, And Man Created God by George Carl Mynchenberg was written by an Agnostic.  He uses science, history and logic, while denying all religious beliefs and faith revelations from God.  Curious that you can buy this book from Amazon for $15.93, but can also rent it for $21.  Finally, And Man Created God, this one by Mary Jane Sheehy-Moffett, who writes about a journey to freedom.

Clearly, this subject matter must be compelling, for it convinced six publishing houses to publish yet another AMCG with exactly the same title.

Here now is my concise take on this subject.  Early in the transition of Homo sapiens, say, 100,000 years ago, it became fashionable for tribe leaders to gain control, maintain security and reinforce solidarity by alluding to a god-like figure that watches over all and promises something like heaven in the end, but only if you are a good citizen.  This individual no doubt gave the impression that he (more than she) actually had a direct communication link through prayer, which everyone in the cave was urged to emulate.  Humans thrived and became the dominant creature on Planet Earth.  We might be here today because in the beginning Man created God.

Today, you would think with our educational system, television, the internet and preeminence of science, the masses would finally see the true light.  Richard Dawkins, in his God Delusion certainly makes sense.  Well, religion is almost as strong as it's ever been.  In the USA, more than 90% have historically believed in God.  The belief rate in Europe, Japan and Israel is much, much lower, in the 10% to 25% range.  These polls, though, depend on who is asking the question to whom.  A particularly surprising survey result was obtained by the French Ipsos Social Research Institute, involving 18,000 people from 23 countries (no countries from the Middle East, where belief rates are the highest):
  • Only 51% believed in God 
  • The same number, 51% thought there would be an afterlife
  • Belief in a Supreme Being
    • Indonesia  93%
    • Turkey  91%  
    • Brazil  84% 
    • Mexico 78%
  • Less than 40 in the USA believed in heaven/hell (all previous polls I've seen have been much higher)
  • 41% believed in evolution
Let me end with a direct quote from a book I'm reading, Science and Religion, edited by Paul Kurtz.  You think AMCG had a lot of identical titles?  The combination of Science and Religion has five times more, although sometimes the book is called Religion and Science, for which the Albert Einstein version sells for 99 cents.  This quote is from an essay by Sir Hermann Bondi (Cambridge Professor and eminent mathematician and cosmologist) from Kurtz's compilation:

If thought about such a god gives comfort to individuals, I, for one, would not wish to argue them out of it.  Indeed, if believers look at their faith as a purely personal matter, then there can be no dispute. But many believers (including the leadership of most institutionalized religions) regard their faith, based on revelation, as THE TRUTH, applicable to all people everywhere and at all times.  These persons view everyone who does not share their particular faith as in error.

The monstrous arrogance of this outlook is hard to stomach.  The wide variety of faiths and their mutual contradictions must mean that at most one of them can be right and that all the others are wrong.  It follows logically that the human mind has a tendency to believe, sincerely and often with fervor, something that is false.  To think that oneself and one's fellow believers in one's own faith are uniquely exempt from this general weakness is self-centeredness of stupendous magnitude....

The words flow on, but the point of Bondi's logic is that if all religions are right, this is impossible, ergo, there can be no God.

All the above makes you wonder what will be the fate of religion over the next few millennia.  In SIMPLE SOLUTIONS for Humanity I provided a pathway entitled The Golden Evolution.  However, you don't need to buy the book (although the e-version only costs $3.99), for I serialized the entire publication here in this blog beginning with Part 1.  More so, to integrate religion into one God, maybe there should be a modern day Council of Nicaea for all religions to gather and re-write The Bible, Koran and similar sacred writings, updating the thousands of versions into a unified text.  I actually hinted at such a summit in my book above.  Sir Bondi would retort, I would suggest, with something like, why bother?  But Kurtz and Bondi are no longer with us, so I will perhaps later post on The New Golden Evolution.

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Invest 90C remains a minimal concern, but one computer model now shows one pathway right through the Hawaiian Islands:


Also almost worthy of reportage, but there was last night a 5.2 earthquake of a link to Kilauea Volcano on the Big Island:


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