Monday, 15 October 2012

Big Bang and religion mixed in Cern debate

RE: Big Bang and religion mixed in Cern debate

If we think of religious ideas in the same way as we think of artistic and cultural ideas, ie. not as BAD METAPHYSICS (religion tends to make really bad metaphysics), but instead as claims about BEAUTY or GOODNESS or SPIRIT, it is possible to find common ground between people who like science and people who like religion... In the same way that it is possible to find common ground between people who like tennis and people who like football. Which is not to say I think that all or even much religion is beautiful or good... I think a great deal of it is ugly and bad. My point is just that we aren't going to find any common ground if either religious people or scientific people keep viewing religion in that way.

If we start asking about any given religion: "Is it beautiful, or is it ugly?" and, "Is it kind or is it nasty?" etc. we will do better than if we ask: "Does this religion make accurate metaphysical claims?" Most religions were designed before human beings had thought very much about metaphysics, and so tend to be pretty rubbish at it. And rubbing people's noses in their stupidity never made for a good party.

However there is one place where I think modern metaphysics does agree with at least a couple of religions ... and that is the at the point of origin: ie. "Why is there anything rather than nothing?" ... and the delightful answer being that we don't know... nobody knows.

My feeling is that our collective ignorance of origin should be a primary tenet of our education system. If we could get people up to the level of an appreciation of our collective ignorance, I think we all might start to get a bit less arrogant.

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