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Did Socrates say "Know Thyself", or was he misunderstood, as all are. Show Thyself is all we can do. The knowing is unknowable.  

I am filled with joy.  It can't be helped.  

Became a Farmer, Builder, Musician, Tank Commander, Librarian, Lawyer and Minister. I have failed at many things. And now retired.  Filled, just filled, with Joy. 

Sunday, August 10, 2008

The importance of Religion

The comedic documentary, RELIGULOUS, is scheduled to be out in October 3. The director is Larry Charles, who did "Borat", and the interviews are conducted by the acolyte of George Carlin, Bill Maher. http://www.latimes.com/thebigpicture

Clearly the pre-opening announcement of this "documentary" -- interviews with real "believers" -- is part of a marketing plan, a ROI motive behind the mirror of comedy and the spin of entertainment. Still, since it promises to be a comedic exposure of the predators who continue to benefit themselves at the expense of "believers", I want to add to the pre-opening "buzz".

At the same time, it may be necessary for those of us in the "science" community to distinguish our positions from those who merely want to make fools of Believers.

The True Believers are already made fools of by the predators; I do not wish to add to their burdens, or even to their doubts. Religion is a powerful reality, and it is morally neutral, neither "good" nor "bad". Sam Harris' THE END OF FAITH does not make sense scientifically. There is faith, and it continues; it IS. Even if Harris refers to faith as a "neurological disorder", he misses the point: It is neurological. It is IN our brain. We are hard-wired -- send us your tired cliches -- for prayer, hope, belief, "spirituality", "not bread alone-ness".

In fact, the role of religion in the great suffering and pain inflicted by humans on others, should be looked at carefully. We seem to have suffered far more at the hand of Non-Believers: Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Idi Amin, and the pillagers of the Tutsi congregations in the churches. With this history, I'll take my chances with the Believers every time. Every time. Especially, because there is no god.... and Believers clearly are looking for redemption, which makes them gullible victims to predators.

I hope this film mocks the predation, and not the congregant victims. "Kill the monarchy, but not the King." -- Thomas Paine.