Tuesday, May 03, 2005

The Faith of Churches

The Greek who wrote "Count no man happy till he's dead" was counted as wise. Wait till all the evidence is in. If the guy is happy the day before he dies he may still be unhappy by the time he dies. Apparently only the last condition counts.
This wisdom is not evenly applied throughout society. We are told that God is wise. How can we tell? We haven't seen his last act yet. Ditto loving. Ditto all possible attributes. Unless Nietzsche is right! IF God is dead, THEN maybe we could say something and have it be less ludicrous (IF we knew what the dead God had done).

Societies are based on faith, not evidence, that certain things are true. The church is based on a faith that members of the church can discern the sacred from the profane, god from devil, good from evil ... that there is a divine and that members of the church can know something of it ... that some ritual gives the members special abilities. Before, I didn't know shit from Shinola; ah, but now that I've eaten the body of Christ, drunk his blood ...

Little Einstein is sent to school. The school assigns Little Einstein a geometry teacher, a physics teacher. The society that made the school is confident that the geometry teacher and the physics teacher will be competent to understand what Little Einstein says. Wrong.Added:
Ah: then can they understand what little Betsy says? little Paul?
I don't believe anyone is competent to understand what anyone says.

1 comment:

Cat said...

Great post, pk!

Yeah, I can imagine a little Einstein or pk in school... I don't have many happy memories of it.

My take on faith and evidence:

Faith may have a spectrum of meaning ranging from dogma to simple "okay" acceptance of a belief or an idea.

Evidence seems to have a similar spectrum of meaning - it can serve as a basis of assumption, or a cause for skeptical examination.

Some of the most dogmatic thinkers I know appear to be people who despise religion, yet treat science as if it were a religion and questioners of accepted science as heretics... that seems like a conundrum of sorts. Of course, they also tend to be firm believers in the State... and nobody to my recollection has proposed the separation of science and State.