Tuesday, April 27, 2010

God is Eternal... Wanna Buy Some Swampland?

(The "Vast Dream" Revisited, or the Big Brain makes a comeback as God...)

I still don't get it.

Christians say that the universe couldn't have been here forever, so it must have had a beginning. There was once nothing at all, and then *poof* there was a universe. Hard to explain all right. I agree.

(Which is why I maintain that there was always something, and not nothing)

However let's say that there was once nothing, and then there was something, like they say.

This they say proves in some way that there had to have been a creator god to start the ball rolling.

However, they absolutely refuse to even discuss where said creator god came from! In fact, they maintain that said creator god is eternal and has always been here!

This makes zero sense. How can God be eternal, if the universe cannot be? Either one is, I think, equally unlikely. In fact, it's more unlikely that it's God that is eternal, since God is a being.

Now here's the rub: I can imagine *something* coming from nothing, as in, a vacuum fluctuation. A huge one. That is actually possible. But not a fully formed deity. Such a thing cannot just arise out of nothing. A deity is an organized personality, so something needed to organize it. A vacuum fluctuation would just release energy and particles, but creating a God is harder than creating a man, no? Such a thing just doesn't appear out of nothing, already organized into a vast hypercomplex personality with powers and desires.

God, if he exists, had an origin, rest assured. Even a deity doesn't come from nowhere, or just exist forever. For one thing, this would mean that before God decided to create this universe, He waited FOREVER. A literal eternity, and then He made His move. Sure.

The idea that God has just been around forever is a huge cheat. He cannot have been. However, it seems even less likely that He just popped into existence out of nothingness. So, we can conclude from this that God is highly unlikely to exist at all, at least as advertised.

Unless... (Here I go again) Unless instead of a creator God, there is just a mind, a mind that has always existed, and NOTHING ELSE. In other words, this universe would not 'really' exist like we think it does; it would all be the dream of that eternal mind. This means that even questions of time wouldn't apply to the mind itself, since it dreams the time as well. It has to dream in a sequence, not 'all at once,' so it has to introduce the concept of time into the dream for changes to happen in it.
Or rather, we do. Because in this concept here, we are the ones really doing the dreaming, and not God, not the mind. We comprise the mind. It is literally us. Everything, even the 'inanimate' objects, are just made up of consciousness.

However, this is not in any way like the God of the Christians.

If God is a vast mind in which we exist as dreams, then said mind might be all there is, anywhere. No real matter, no real energy, no real space. Just a consciousness. A discorporate consciousness. Or perhaps rather, a discorporate data 'field' on which consciousnesses naturally arise.

Such a thing is surely possible as unlikely as it sounds, and it is not nearly 'as impossible' that a mind has been around 'forever' since in this scenario, the mind is all that ever was, all that is, and all that ever will be.

Of course, if this is true and everything is all a part of one vast consciousness, said consciousness would not in itself be 'self-aware.' Not like a deity, in other words.

More like maybe a huge computer database on which we are the only files, we meaning this whole universe. The database itself has no 'will' or 'consciousness,' it merely holds and stores information which does. As in, us.

Now as unlikely as this may seem to those conditioned to only believe in this reality as it appears to be, it does basically solve ALL questions. All of them. No, really.

Is the universe infinite or finite? It can now be infinite, because in a dream, there is no boundary. You can always think of something else being 'just over that horizon there...' And if we expect to find something, we will.

Is there life after death? What death? You are a pattern of consciousness which in our communal dream, dies. However that pattern is not dependent on matter and energy to exist since its 'real' existence is as a pattern of consciousness, or data. So it is free to die in the dream and wake up in another dream, for all we can know. At any rate, it is not bonded to matter, because matter isn't real, either.

This sounds like nonsense, I realize. However it's only when you get past how silly it sounds that you start to realize just how very possible it all is.

If it is true, wouldn't that be funny? Here we all are, so convinced that it's all matter and energy and that we have a good handle on what reality is, and then we would have to change our entire perspective on all of that. We'd have to get rid of what I like to call 'reality-bias' or the conditioning we all have to believe that reality is as we see it. It wouldn't be easy for most people to believe. Impossible is the right word, I think.

When you look at what science is finding at the quantum level, the seeming contradictions, the ‘quantum strangeness,’ the fact that it seems that matter is almost completely empty space, the phenomena of entanglement, the wave-particle duality and the collapse of the wave-form having something to do with our observations of it, and so many other things, they all seem to be hinting at something, and this is what I think they might be hinting at.

It’s just an opinion. I’m not starting a religion over it or anything. I just maintain that it’s a hell of a lot more likely that we seem to be giving it credit for.

It’s certainly a lot more likely than God.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Are You Proud Of Your Humility?

"The Modern Christian Credo: 'Since we're definitely going to heaven, let's start looking down on people now just for practice...'"
-Saint Brian the Godless


The Christian system of morality, being based in coercion and not in teaching genuine empathy, and thereby promoting an egocentric rather than an 'other-centered' worldview, is as noted here before, heavily flawed. It too often accomplishes that which it pretends to guard against. It produces a type of love based in fear, a type of empathy based in self-centeredness, and a type of humility based in pride. It teaches people to look outside themselves for evil, but never within.

Let’s face it, it’s hard to be humble when you know that you’re right. It’s hard to be humble when you’re one of the chosen few that are beloved by God. It’s hard to be humble when you know that God is going to save you when so many others will not be saved. (heh heh) It’s very hard to be humble when you know that you are a good and righteous person, beyond a shadow of a doubt, and that those who disagree with you are evil, because you belong to the Right Faith and they do not.
Hey, let’s face it; it’s hard to be humble when you’re a Christian.

Franklin Graham is in the news lately. He’s the son of Billy Graham, so he definitely has a lot of name cred. Mr. Graham is in the news because he is of the opinion that Islam is an evil religion, and is not afraid to say so. (He should look in a mirror sometime…) The Pentagon disinvited him to one of their Prayer Services due to this. So now he’s the darling of the right and Sarah Palin; ‘the poor soul, censored by the Obama Socialist Regime for merely telling the ‘truth…’’

One of his comments during all of this stands out to me. He mentioned that he loves all Muslims and wants to let them know that they do not have to strap explosives to themselves in order to get into heaven; they merely have to give up their own evil religion and accept Jesus Christ as their Savior.

Way to go, Frankie boy! Now, that’s what I call Pride with a Capital ‘P.’ In his overweening pride, he has, in reverse, actually managed to echo Osama Bin Ladin himself, who said that if the West wanted the terrorism to stop, the first thing it had to do was to ‘convert to Islam.’

You see, Mr. Graham is not in doubt as to his humility. He knows perfectly well that he is good, humble, righteous, and loving. And he knows that he knows best here. He knows this, because his faith in his religion tells him so. It informs him of his goodness and of the wickedness of others. It is his guide and his very being is based in it. It’s what helped him to be what he always wanted to be, after all, a good and righteous man. A humble man of God. Heck, he'd even be the first to tell you that he's only a wretched sinner, because he loves how humble that sounds. So, by 'knowing' all of this, by believing in this manner, he has no need to question himself in any of these areas ever again. He’s covered!

Good thing too, because it allows him to concentrate on ‘saving’ everyone else so they can be as perfect, as acceptable to God someday, as he is now. God willing, of course.

Mr. Graham is now free to be proud of his humility.

What Mr. Graham is missing for some reason here is that if one is proud of being good, of being humble and proud of acting humble and of being thought of as humble by others, then one is still as caught in the grip of pride and egocentricity as if they were an outright braggart braying their virtues to the world.

I guess that's why pride is the deadliest of all sins, and also the root of all evil. It's so deceptive. When you try to fight it you wind up playing right into its hands, unless you are really aware of what's happening and unless you are able to question yourself with an open mind. Sadly, this is actively discouraged by Christianity, both the ‘self-questioning’ and the ‘open mind’ parts.

Real pride is not necessarily overt. Real pride does not always show itself. The man who openly brags about his accomplishments is one example, but so is the man who does not brag solely because he knows that it would not look good to do so, and the second type of person is much more common.

And so also is any man an example of pride that truly believes himself to be humble; for no truly humble being would be able to know that they themselves are humble and remain so. It is not possible for a truly humble person to know in their own mind that they are humble, for such knowledge is the very death of humility itself. Such knowledge is the seed of pride. Such knowledge ends the process of self-questioning and self-examination which is the very key to genuine humility.

So basically, the proud man believes himself to be humble, but the humble man knows himself to be proud.

Christianity, by teaching that evil is always easy to see and to define and that pride is something obvious, does the faithful a great disservice. By painting the very subtle as simple and overt, it leaves it’s believers in a state of vulnerability. They always look to the sins of others, while being totally blind to their own. This allows them to actually become proud, evil wretches in the world, all the while being absolutely convinced that they are the diametric opposite of all that.

Once a man truly *believes* that he himself is definitely not evil (or is definitely good) and therefore that he would not do anything that was evil, that’s precisely the moment when he becomes capable of doing real evil. Real evil, the darkest kind of evil, always comes wearing sheep’s clothing. Real evil always masquerades as goodness. Just look at the Catholic Church. This is not because Satan likes it that way either; it is because Satan is a (very twisted) myth designed to cover up the fact that the real source of evil in the world is merely living and breathing people who are convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that they themselves represent only the highest good and that they know what's best for everyone else, too.

People just like Franklin Graham. Or Osama Bin Ladin, for that matter. Or maybe... you?