I have been thinking for a while about writing this post, but have had obstacles in the way of writing. These obstacles aren’t to do with this, it was obstacles like holidays, work, and the other things we have to do in our lives. I have decided to write this as a prequel to my philosophical paper. I have mentioned before about this paper, but to restate, it is an explanation to what is life. But in it I have to tackle God and or gods. You can’t answer life without tackling this most audacious of hurdles. I have outlined the idea of gods and religion before in previous posts, and why I think they are unnecessary. I have questioned religious authority outside this blog, and am frequently thinking on new ways of getting people to look at the facts.
We as a species are one of the most caring animals on the planet. Like most primates we look after our young, teach them life skills and protect and care for them. But we don’t just stop there, we keep going right into a child’s adulthood, and caring for them even after then. We not only look after our young, our altruistic behaviour makes us look after other people, who we may not even know. This is demonstrated in our giving to charity, helping others in trouble and the fact that we have a society. If we didn’t respect each other, our society and civilisation would soon crumble. This altruistic behaviour is to be admired, for as a species it allows us to develop and grow into the species we are. It has given rise to medicine, it has generated industry and created welfare systems. Altruism and a caring attitude is absolutely necessary for our existence. But has our caring, medicine and humanitarian attitude caused our existence to change, and change the face of our evolution. Is our love changing the power of survival of the fittest on us?
It has been a fairly long time since I have written about the wonders of space. Since a small child the cosmos has fascinated me, and the vast expanse of the universe keeps my brain active and entertained to this day. The universe to me is a wonder of what nature and evolution can do. The sheer expanse of space-time is mind-boggling. To think the milky way, the little galaxy we live in, is 100,000 light years across is just a number so huge that the mind struggles to imagine its scale. And when you think that the milky way contains over 100 billion stars to potentially 300 billion stars, the brain stars to fuzz and frazzle, considering each one of those stars are the same size, and many more are larger, than the sun.
And to think that our star just sits in one of the arms of the milky way galaxy, being orbited by all 9 planets (pluto is still a planet to me). And our sun is just one of billions of stars in the milky way. And the earth also being just one of billions of planets in the milky way as well. ANd pushing even further out, the milky way, our home galaxy is just one of millions of billions in the universe. Now how many stars is that again? So what I’m trying to show is that the universe is big, and when i say big, i mean monstrously large, that the human mind soon crumbles at the size of the universe (and that’s just the universe we can see). So what about life? If the universe is big, what about the numbers for life?
We live in a world of high demand, increasing population, and an ever intensive requirement for food and natural resources. We have evolved to be a species which is capable of shaping it’s land beyond that of any other species in this planet. It is with our burgeoning intelligence that we have not only sculpted the land, but life itself. We have forced the hand of man into foresting, mining and harvesting. We have crafted animals through selective breeding into producing food, clothes and entertainment. We as a species in the “western world” do not have to hunt, harvest or hem. We live in a world of man made wonders, where the natural world is nearly forgotten about, even though it is it which is still the heart of all industries today.
But even though we have managed to bend nature to our will, we still seem to want to bend it further, so that it is no longer the work of nature and evolution, which is moulded by the unconscious hand of natural selection, but that it is moulded and changed by the conscious and arrogant hand of man. We don’t seem to be happy with the current cropping, and want to make it even easier by modifying plant and animals genes, commonly known as Genetically Modified Food.
As a child I used to love idioms and fixed expressions. I still enjoy them today, but I tend to lean towards the more adult and meaningful expressions of language. But even now I can still remember the games I used to play as a child, and to accompany them, the wonderful and weird phrases we would say as children. One phrase that I used to use, my childhood friends used to use, and many children (and some adults) today use is that old “adage” for want of a better word, ‘sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.’
The reason I say I want a better a word than adage, and I’m sure there is one but I’m just to lazy to sift through my dictionary and thesaurus, is because adage indicts some truth about the saying. And in all seriousness I don’t think that saying has any real true meaning, except that sticks or stones if used particularly viciously will break bones, or at least bruise or tear skin. But the words bit is completely wrong.
I am a humanitarian and an atheist. The two sit nicely in each others hands. You can’t really have one without the other, and I hope many fellow humanitarians and atheists feel the same, which they most surely do.
And combined with my love of humans, I love being alive, and being able to enjoy this universe to the best of my human brains capacity. I love knowing the symphony that plays in orbits, and stellar nurseries and the gentle movement of waves caused by the shifting moon. And what pleases me the most, is knowing that I can experience it to the full, with no strings or ties holding me back. Of course, this is not to say that I don’t sit within the moral guidelines of humanity and civilisation. But I am free to think, feel and know to the full potential all that there is. And yet, I am also saddened by this planet, and our race in particular. Actually, solely our race. I am at a juxtaposition, I am torn by my love of humanity and all that it can achieve, and ripped by the anger, hatred and ruthless naïvety of our species.
I have, in the course of my life so far, had three main passions. These inescapable passions are love, humanity and education. These three things have been the corner stones that make up the house that is me. To me these three things symbolise my goals, efforts, questionings, intrigue and personal disposition. It is as a result of these three things, influenced by peers, family and of course genetic principles, that have led me on the path I lead today.
The combination of these passions in me fuels me on a constant movement of thinking and questioning, and finding real answers to problems, and trying to find a harmony within our species. As a species we can achieve great things. And in all honesty, we have achieved some amazing feats. But what still bothers me is the destruction of humanity, and the way we treat other humans. It is as if the word humanity never existed some times. I will cover more on this with regards to religion in another post, but the main tangent of this post will be on the general brutal behaviour of humans towards others.