Category Archives: scientific determinism

The God, Math: The religious dogma of science revealed through the “expanding universe” (Part TWO)

The Wikipedia article on the expanding universe, cited in part one of this article series, does not acknowledge the necessity of the observer to Reality, particularly with respect to movement, and ignores the distinction between movement qua movement and relative movement. Instead it appeals to the artifice of the metric tensor to explain how the universe does not actually expand, and that space and objects in space do not actually move, and yet it kinda does and they kinda do. I submit that science has become, in some fundamental way, the pseudo-philosophical, and albeit implied, art of rejecting the observer as entirely superfluous to Reality, Existence, and thus by extension, Truth and Ethics. But instead of simply admitting that science has no frame of reference for describing (the fundamental nature of) the observer, and thus conceding that he should be left to other schools of thought and other methodologies for his description, science functionally declares his “objective” non-existence as observer-qua-observer (or, better stated, his “ultimately non-efficacious existence”) an empirical fact, and this  because the observer is scientifically revealed to be so.

I am not entirely certain why science promotes this folderol…a focused and overt dissertation on the subject has never been submitted. Nevertheless, what is overt, and painfully obvious, is that science has no rationally consistent methodology for describing and explaining the observer. The observer lies completely beyond the scope of science, and for some reason this is unacceptable to the scientific community. Is it arrogance? Bullish pride? Who knows…but by rejecting the observer as purely ephemeral at best, it attempts to rectify the inrinsic contradictions this rejection of the observer necessitates…for example, that the universe is not expanding, and space and objects in space do not actually move, except that it kinda is and they kinda do. And the metric tensor is a perfect example of an artifice used to reconcile the contradiction.

“Technically, neither space nor objects in space move. Instead it is the metric governing the size and geometry of spacetime itself that changes in scale.”  [Bold print added for emphasis]

A few problems with this…I will attempt to plot the inconsistencies as clearly and succinctly as possible.

Earlier, I stated that the claims that “neither space nor objects in space move”, and “the universe does not expand into anything, and does not require space to exist outside of it” are correct. However, it is important that I qualify my agreement as being in some way quite superficial; that is, my agreement terminates once a deeper examination of these claims in the context of the full Wikipedia quote commences (see the beginning of part one for the full quote). And unfortunately, the examination needs only be cursory.

While it is true that objects “in space” do not move, the article, as I have mentioned, fails to qualify the meaning of the word “move”. That is, it does not make the important distinction between movement qua movement, which certainly does not exist, because this is impossible in a vacuum, and relative movement, which certainly does. In a vacuum, object A, alone, does not move, because there is and can be no relevant, measurable, definable distinction between, say, A at position X and A at position Y. A is simply “in” the vacuum…there is no “where” then to its existence except itself, as it were. It just exists. It is A qua A. But if we add object B to the vacuum, then there is no longer the existence of A qua A, but also the relative existence of A to B. And now there can be a relevant, measurable, and definable distinction between A’s position at X and its position at Y—as relative to B. In this context then, A does in fact move, it’s simply that the movement is relative, not absolute. And the converse of this is also true—that B may move relative to A. Of course, it is the necessary role of the observer to determine which object, A or B, is to be the reference for the relative movement between the two. Is A revolving around B, for example, or is B revolving around A? That question can only be answered by the observer, because only the Self is constant.

Moving on.

While it is rightly stated that the universe does not expand into anything, it should, for clarity and veracity’s sake, be stated that, this being the case, the universe does not actually expand at all. Space, and its corollary, time, being non-existent outside of the universe, along with anything else, means that the universe simply exists relative to itself, so to speak…or in other words, non-relatively. Meaning that the universe simply “is what it is”. In actuality, “the universe” is simply a label we give to the sum and substance of Reality. The universe, thus,  is not a thing, so to speak, but an abstraction, and as such it holds no deeper meaning nor significance than as an abstract context for Reality. The expansion of the universe then is simply a way of describing a particular form of relative movement between certain objects man observes in his environment.

*

“It is the metric governing the size and geometry of spacetime itself that actually changes in scale.”

Spacetime is an interesting concept, or phenomenon, you could say, I suppose, as it is presented to us by science. It is referred to in physics as being a “coordinate system”. But here in the Wikipedia article we see an implied distinction between the coordinate system, or the metric tensor, and spacetime.

So which is it? Is spacetime a coordinate system, or is the coordinate system distinct? Well, due to the intrinsic rational inconsistencies with the scientific conceptual perspective of spacetime, and being familiar with science’s penchant for excusing these inconsistencies by appealing to contradiction and then pretending that the contradiction is understood and appreciated by the “enlightened” few—that is, the mathematically and scientifically gifted, who today, ironically, comprise our postmodern priest class—I would say that  science most likely considers it both and neither.

Not that it matters to us really, for it is clear to the rational observer, who resists the scientific community’s determination to exceed the scope of its mathematical boundaries, that spacetime is purely a conceptual placeholder. That is, neither space nor time actually exist. The abstractions of “space” and “time” may be rendered as a mathematical coordinate system, but these are not object or empirical themselves—spacetime is not a thing to either be a coordinate system or revealed as or translated into a coordinate system. It is instead a product of man’s conceptualizing powers—a means by which man cognitively organizes certain objects in his environment.

Space is not a thing itself, it is by definition and by rational necessity the absence of things; you cannot have holes in space (e.g “worm holes”), for space is the hole. And objects do not exist in space…they simply exist. The whole point of space, the vacuum, is that it is not. And objects cannot exist in that which does not exist. And time, being a continuum, is likewise a conceptual abstraction—a product of man’s mind; a product of the conscious observer. Time is and must necessarily be a continuum, for time can have no beginning or end, it is the beginning and the end. Time can have no future or past or present, it is the future, past, and present. Time, in other words, is an infinitely linear conceptual construct which is divided into mutually exclusive units of past, present, and future, which are qualified and quantified for practical application. Spacetime, then, at its fundamental root is the abstract conceptual environment in which all empirical/material objects are said to exist at the irreducible physical level. Nothing more. The metric tensor, or the coordinate system, which physics declares the corollary existential, even ontic I would argue, manifestation of spacetime, is simply another abstract quantification of it.

Naturally science disagrees with this…the metric is no mere abstraction, you see, but a god of sorts. It has causality, and its causality is authoritative; and being mathematical and thus predictable, is determinative; and being determinative is absolute—omnipresent, omniscient, and omnipotent. Do not take the assertion that the metric “governs” the size and geometry of spacetime as some unimportant thing, its deeper implications to be glossed over as unimportant or pat. The metric governs—it commands, it controls. It acts and the universe inexorably follows suit. It declares what is to be done and the universe obeys. The universe does not itself expand, and objects and spacetime do not move, and yet the metric changes in scale, and so it does and so they do. They do not, and yet through the mysterious omnipotence of the math, they do. The contradiction, though a contradiction, is nevertheless true, and is a testament to the power of god. He who has ears, let him hear. The power of god is wiser than man…man cannot comprehend it. For man’s reason has no frame of reference, no means of apprehending or processing an IS which is simultaneously and IS NOT. Man, the priests of science declare, must accept such truths on faith alone. Math is god; and he doesn’t need your acceding or your concession to validate his truth.

The universe is merely an extension of god, who created all things ex nihilo…from nothing. And god is the metric tensor; the math. The math is infinite…changing into itself; expanding into its own infinity. So the numbers change, but they don’t, because the numbers go on forever. There is no beginning nor end; the difference in the scale of the metric is the difference in degrees of infinity, which of course is no difference at all. The universe expands, but it doesn’t; objects in space move, but they don’t. The universe, objects, spacetime…they all exist, but they don’t. But how is this possible? Because the god of science declares it so.

The intellectual disagreements between religion science, it seems, boil down to little more than debates about whose god can beat up the other.

END

The God, Math: The religious dogma of science revealed through the “expanding universe” (Part ONE)

Accepting that the idea of the expansion of the universe is a phenomenon considered relatively well-understood and axiomatic by the scientific community, and perhaps in general, let’s assume Wikipedia to be a credible citation for summarizing expansion:

“The expansion of the universe is the increase of the distance between two distant parts of the universe with time. It is an intrinsic expansion whereby the scale of space itself changes. The universe does not expand “into” anything and does not require space to exist “outside” it. Technically neither space nor objects in space move. Instead it is the metric governing the size and geometry of spacetime itself that changes in scale.”

Focus for a moment on this section: “…it is the metric governing the size and geometry of spacetime itself…”

How does Wikipedia define “metric”?

”In general relativity, the metric tensor…may be thought of as a generalization of the gravitational potential of Newtonian gravitation.”

“And if we look up the word “tensor” we are told that this is a:

”…mathematical object anologous to but more general than a vector, represented by an array of components that are functions of the coordinates of space.” 

In other words, what science, particularly physics, is telling us is that the only thing which is active, and thus existing (where existence to be efficacious must be active, not passive…for existence which does not “do” is not actually existing) is the mathematical coordinate system. All else then, is passive. All else except the metric tensor does not do; does not move; does not act. Thus, existentially speaking, it is purely illusory. Reality is, in true essence, a set of infinite abstract placeholders which somehow the mathematically-inclined observer may apprehend and define, even though he, himself, is not actually there.

This may seem like quite a large leap of logic. How does one arrive at such a philosophical conclusion from a purely academic monograph on tensors, vectors, geometry, and spacetime?

I’ll explain.

*

I was somewhat surprised to see the Wikipedia article on the expansion of the universe admit that the universe cannot and does not actually expand into anything. I was further surprised to see it admitted that neither space nor objects in space actually move. Accepting the logic of the relativity of movement in a vacuum, the conclusion that there is no movement qua movement (non-relative movement) would seem quite self-evident, yet I’ve never seen it admitted by science. Perhaps I’ve just not been hanging around the right circles and source material.

At any rate, both the claim that the universe does not actually expand (expansion qua expansion) and that space and objects in space do not actually move (movement qua movement) are of course completely true. Perhaps the reason for my surprise at seeing them admitted in a science article is that such claims are more a metaphysical acknowledgment than a physical one. They require a certain meta analysis of the universe qua the universe, rather than the universe as experienced relative to the observer. The former is falls more within the scope of philosophy, the latter, physics. This of course is fine, there is nothing wrong with anyone citing a fact, it’s just that I’ve grown more accustomed to science hijacking philosophy and then promptly mangling it like a toddler on a jelly sandwich instead of actually accepting its distinct truth.

Unfortunately, no sooner does the article make the (albeit implied) important and complex distinction between physics and metaphysics, when this distinction is almost immediately obliterated, with science once again hijacking philosophy and handling it like a monkey handles a clarinet.

What this article implies is that all of reality is boiled down to a mathematical artifice…a McGuffin, you could call it. You see, to bridge the gap between metaphysics and physics, a bridge which is recognized by the declaration that the universe doesn’t actually expand (that is, it doesn’t expand into anything…and by this we can extrapolate the logical assertion thus that the universe doesn’t actually expand at all) and that space nor objects in space actually move, science submits a purely abstract, purely cognitively manifested contrivance of an infinite set of specifically structured numerical and symbolic placeholders. It replaces the whole of efficacious (active, and thus, existent) reality with this set, which of course has the effect, intended or unintended (it doesn’t matter), of punting the entire real field of metaphysics and all of philosophy with it into the endless abyss of mysticism.

And even more egregious is the fact that the irony is completely lost on those atheists who appeal to science as proof of the rationality of dismissing God and the notion of God altogether. Because only fools believe in the fairy tale of the “magic man in the sky”, whilst the rational objectivists and sane empiricists can see that clearly all things are created and controlled instead by an invisible, yet omnipotent, omniscient, and ominipresent mathematical coordinate system summing all things to infinity on infinity.

If that’s not psychological projection then I don’t know what is.

*

Movement, you see, doesn’t exist…that is, the article tells us that the universe does not expand, and that space and objects in space do not move, but instead it is the “metric” which changes in scale”.

Except of course, that there is movement. The concept of movement is not irrational; actual movement does happen…the idea is efficacious; action occurs. It only needs to be qualified that movement is relative. An observer needs to be part of the equation in order to provide a reference for the relationship between two or more objects in a vacuum…because the observer—the Awareness of Self (the “I” of Self)—provides the (only rational) constant for object relationship in a vacuum. Once the observer is present to declare that, for example, “X shall revolve around Y” or “Y shall revolve around X”, then movement can be objectively defined, said to exist, and this efficaciously and actually so, and then mathematically measured. Mathematics are a conclusion, or an effect, not a cause, you see.

But science doesn’t accept the rationality and actuality of the observer. Because it has long ago confused and conflated mathematical truth with philosophical truth, it has relegated the observer to at best an undefinable and ultimately irrelvant epiphenomenon, inconsistent and incompatible with reality, because reality is to be wholly defined scientifically, which is to say mathematically.

Movement, even relative movement, is jettisoned and replaced with a metric which “changes in scale”, which is not movement at all, really , but merely the predetermined “evolution” of an infinite numerical and symbolic mathematical data set. And thus, since nothing actually moves, up to and including the universe, the existence of such is entirely passive, which means that its “existence” doesn’t actually exist. Because if existence doesn’t mean existing, then there is no such thing as existence in the first place. The universe, and all in it, and thus you and me of course, aren’t actually there. There is no observer. And thus there is no constant for movement. All is just an infinite data set which reveals a particular sum at a particular predetermined rate at a particular predetermined time…and all of these particulars are merely illusory, too, for the data set is, again, infinite. Thus, all units of data are merely units of infinity, which renders them ultimately impossible to define. So the grand answer to the cosmic question of life and existence and reality and truth and everything can be summed up by science as merely the  conclusion that “infinity equals infinity”. And, I mean, I don’t even know what you’d call this. It’s some kind of grand atrocity of nihilistic intellectual error, to be sure, but if there is a name for it which illustrates appropriately its level of debasement of all morality and meaning, I don’t know what it is. I couldn’t begin to conjure one up, it’s that bad.

END part ONE

How Christians and Secularists Both Define You as Nothing (Part TWO)

The question of “you” (or me or anyone) is an all or nothing proposition. The question of “what are you?” can only be answered in terms of Absoluteness or Absolute Nothingness. That is, you are, at the most fundamental root, either you, absolutely (Absolute You), or you are utterly NOT you (Absolute Absence of You). You either are or you are not. Period. No matter how science, religion, or philosophy, of all and any kind, attempt to equivocate, or make allowances for “mystery”, or the “unknowable” (a conceptual contradiction if there ever was one), or “epiphenomenon”, or even “magic”, there is no way to get around this simple bifurcation of the root existential question: To be or not to be.

Are you, or are you not?

So which is it? Only one answer is correct. And that correct answer is the only possible answer. Thus, we must choose wisely. The answer may seem obvious, or at least intuitive, of course…at least it should. But after thousands of years of the mass acceptance and integration of reasonless and impossible ideologies on the matter, underwriting and permeating every human endeavor and institution from here to the Great Wall of China on both sides, from the State to Society, Religion, Science, Arts and Entertainment and on and on, it seems that rational blindness is solidly ensconced as the undisputed conveyance of human philosophical wisdom to the point where ascertaining the existentially obvious, at least as the foundation for epistemology and ethics, is as improbable for the average man as winning a gold medal in the Olympics.

From part one in this article series we already know how Christians fundamentally define you—as null. A zero. A cegorical non-entity. A non-agent…despite their unwillingness to plainly admit as much. “You” are merely a placeholder…or rather, a character in a play, having no substance until God fleshes out your role with his all-determining will. In other words, you are an arrant projection of God’s infinite foreknowledge; an agency-less character in his cosmic production. His “gospel narrative” drops you in, with lines, actions, consequences, and destiny all decided for you, outside of you, and thus (and ironically) having nothing actually to do with you at all. Because there is no “you” in Christain metaphysics. No self. No cognition nor agency nor conceptualization of any fundamental substance. You are made from “nothing”…spoken into existence; materializing into reality from a place that not even God can define (if you follow the logic) because it is nowhere and at no time…like the Big Bang. You are not of God, himself, because that would make you a part of God, and yet you are not from a substance which co-existed eternally with God because only God is eternal. You were birthed somehow from an infinite vacuum. You are something which is beget from nothing (ex nihilo). You are thus a contradiction—a lie. An unsolvable, indecipherable enigma…a lock with no key nor combination. You are, but what you are is absolute nothingness. Indeed, “you are nothing” is the rank metaphysical contradiction which forms the fulcrum upon which your liar’s existence pivots, points, and from which it proceeds, only to utterly return to itself inexorably and infinitely.

And that, my friend, is not hyperbole…it is theology. It is the sum and substance of your meaning and worth to God. it is the metaphysics of Christian canon. Your value as an individual is null because your individual self is the illusion in which only the unsaved reprobate indulges. To be saved is to recognize that there IS NOTHING of you worth saving in the first place, and this is because you don’t actually exist at all.

So what do you do with this cold slap of Christian doctrine? Well, you might do what many others have done when they realize that all hope must be abandoned once they cross the threshold of the institutional church. They flee to the ostensible “safe haven” of the stoic, cold, unflinchingly certain, emotionless arena of “objective” and “empirical” science, and embrace the metaphysics of scientific determinism (which is the practice of science as a philosophy). Its arms are not warm or loving; its embrace is not meant to comfort or sooth; its wings are not going to transport you to the safety of the eternal afterlife and lay you gently down in a diamond city with gilded streets. But what it does offer is the hard, rigid truth, so at least you always know where you stand. It doesn’t get your hopes up, but then there are no hopes to be dashed when the empiricism of reality inevitably comes crashing down upon you, grinding your life back into dust.

Scientific determinism is closed to bribery. It has no use for dreams or wishes, nor does it offer any. There is no Grand Consciousness to which one may nor must make supplication; it pretends no miracles…no defiance of reality does it promise. And despite the fact that its determinist metaphysics are indeed philosophical, it implies that philosophy is for fools—the opium of the masses because it’s really nothing more than religion, anyway. Metaphysics is psuedo-science and psuedo-rational, like alchemy or phrenology as far as science is concerned. Science explains “what is” in terms that can be measured, and thus in the only terms that can be trusted to be truly meaningful.

So…what of all of this?

Is it true?

No. All of this is a lie, of course, and thus what actually happens to erstwhile Christains when they flee the rational madness of Christian metaphysics for the nuthouse of the metaphysics of science—by becoming atheists or some other iteration of secular determinism—is that they become even more preachy and insufferable than before. Out of the frying pan and into the fire, as they say. The labels change…the vocab, the ribbons and bows. But the metaphysics—and the pretension—remain the same. If you want to know how the scientific determinist defines the nature of existence, and specifically man’s existence, you need look no further than the mysticism from which they ostensibly fled.

The reason, you see, why so many Christians turn to the scientific determinism of secular ideologies after their disillusionment with the church is because they are lazy. Atheism provides them with all the trappings of Christain metaphysics in new clothes…they FEEL better without actually having to do the work to GET better. Scientific determinism provides them with remedial and superficial change, and relieves them of the time and trouble and loss and hurt which accompanies real, substantive change.

Real change, you see, is humbling, not empowering. It proceeds along years and years of uncertainty, it does not gift wrap instant truth in the form of formulas and equations. It is not simply tearing off a red jersey and donning a blue one. It is not simply switching to another team that is still playing the same game. It puts you OUTSIDE of “cause and effect” and makes you an observer of it. Which is what you truly are.

The scientific determinist rejects “God” in favor of physics. They forsake an omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient Diety for an omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient Natural Law. But of course both mean the exact same thing. Both determine all things; both know what was, is, and shall be, forever and ever; both are everywhere and in everything to the point where it is impossible to know just where they begin and that which they govern ends, and vice versa. And both interpret man, his existence and his consciousness, in the same way: you are a function of that which is absolutely outside yourself, and so there is no “you” in the deep, foundational, and primary sense. “You”, in other words, are a direct function of “NOT you”…and thus You qua You is a lie. “You” do not, in fact, exist at all.

Christianity, and scientific determinism—which is the philosophy of secularism—are metaphysically identical; and this means that they interpret the PHYSICAL universe in indentical ways as well; only the terminology is different. Whether theology (God) or mathematics (Natural Law), both are notions of some kind of Infinite Causal Absolute, which is of course a contradiction in terms. The infinite cannot create anything outside of itself, by definition. At any rate, God or Natural Law are merely broken up into abstract units, organized into various categories of “reality”, and presumed (somehow…the logic is very loose at this point) to be creative…causal. But then beyond that, “God” and “mathematics” as Christianity and Science define them respectively in their spurious philosophical terms, by absolutely causing everything, must necessarily BE everything. In other words, outside of God and Natural Law there is no thing which they did not create ABSOLUTELY. In this sense then, there can be no distinction between what is created and that which creates it. In truth, then, “God” and “Natural Law” do not really explain reality so much as they eradicate the distinction between it and them.

Now, certainly theology and mathematics provide humanity some practical efficacy and utility, which lends them their veneer of philosophical sensibility. Christianity is good at listing rules for man to follow in order to promote some desired, and even perhaps remedially ethical, outcome…an ostensible moral existence: do not kill, do not covet, do not steal, and so on. Mathematics is a fine blueprint for the organization of what is observed in order to provide an a reliable abstract foundation for society’s infrastructure: here’s how you build X to do Y; here is how A can be measured and formulated in order to produce B, and so on. But when we take this rote practical utility and attempt to construct from it a full-on existential paradigm which INCLUDES man, the Observer, we go way astray. The practical utility of “God” and “math” is NOT philosophy…it’s not even a premise…of any kind. It is a tool of cognition…as hammer is a tool of the hand. You cannot reverse engineer “God” or “math” to a metaphysical primary (e.g. man is X, or man is Y) anymore than you can reverse engineer a screwdriver to determine what the user IS. Perhaps you can determine what he does, but not what he is. You do not derive existential meaning from mere practical application. But this axiom is lost on the world, it seems.

*

When it comes to our existence, the old idiom tells us that we have no control over the cards we are dealt. Some of us, we are told, win the “genetic lottery”. Others don’t beat the odds. They are unattractive, ignorant, awkward, disabled, in poor health…any, all, or some combination thereof. You’re either a “winner” or a “loser” as Nature has dictated. That we are born to rich parents or poor, nurturing or abusive; we are servant or ruling class; tall and handsome; short, fat, and ugly…all is determined for us upon our birth. True we may escape some of these circumstances, but the intrinsic characteristics which allow us to do so—our intelligence, toughness, resilience, diligence—these are all dictated to us by nature.

All of this is merely an appeal to the same fundamental metaphysical premise as that of the Christian who describes your “talents” and “time” and all other characteristics as “God’s gifts”. All of that which makes you you is nature’s gamble, nothing more—the cause and effect of the all-determining Law of Nature. And of course this premise carries with it the same rational failure of imagining that a distinction can be made between you and all of the characteristics endemic to your birth; that your eye color, for example, hair and skin color, height,  intelligence, parents, the socioeconomic class into which you are born…all of these exist in a cosmic closet outside of your Self, and Nature costumes you with them upon your birth.

Well, except it is a little more complicated…or perhaps, more manipulative. If you examine the metaphysics which inform this idea, to say that you may somehow be defined as distinct from your inherent and endemic characteristics is at root to remove you from yourself, and THIS ultimately and necessarily renders You qua You an existential contradiction. All the things which make you, you, are not actually OF you, but outside of you, which makes “you” a false premise. Science and Christianity are truly the bedfellows of determinist metaphysics (which, by the by—because I don’t think I’ve mentioned this yet—are simply a remedial version of Collectivist metaphysics). Ironic perhaps, but on the other hand, not really ironic at all. All variations of determinism are GOING to be based on mysticism—appeals to the Unseen, the Unknowable, the Infinite Cause, which create all things ex nihilo. Whether we call the the Creator “God” or “Natural Law”; whether the beginning is the Bible’s “In the beginning God created…” or the Big Bang, the definition of reality is the same. Reality is a place where “you”, at best, is entirely imaginary.

Think about it…science decreees that there is no “you” until the moment of your birth, or your conception, or of any given number of gestational weeks…it really doesn’t matter with respect to the metaphysics. Yet it simultaneously asserts that the child born to rich parents, and/or with abundant intellectual or athletic ability, for example, has simply won the genetic lottery. And this means that he has been birthed as a function of random cosmic occurrence. He is a child as much of probability as he is of his parents. Of course the question that is either unknown, ignored, or forgotten is: how can one win the genetic/cosmic lottery if one does not exist until AFTER the lucky number has been drawn? Or perhaps better said: how can one win the lottery if he is a FUNCTION of that lottery? The lottery—meaning the determined cause and effect of all object interaction as a function of Natural Law—is what CREATES the one who is said to have won it. The “lottery” generates the winner out of itself. The one who is said to have won (or lost) the “lottery’ is created DIRECTLY out of it…it doesn’t select a winner it produces him. The “winner” is nothing but a direct function of the very probabilistic mechanisms which are also said to have given him his winnings. This is a contradiction. What I’m trying to say is that there is NO ONE to “win” the “genetic lottery”…the “winner” doesn’t submit the lucky numbers, the winner IS the lucky numbers.

The “lottery” isn’t actually a lottery at all, then. The “lottery” is only random manifestations of the Infinite Determining Cause. There is no “you” who upon his birth wins or loses some cosmic game of chance. “You” is an illusion. You can make no claim to Self because the Self is a lie.

The question which follows then is: If there is no Self then how can be conscious of yourself?

The answer is that you aren’t, according to the deterministic metaphysics of science. The spurious assertion that there is a “you” somewhere behind all that genetic code and foreordained cause and effect is a bromide given to the masses to placate any possible protest. Behind that bromide however is the truth…and the facade is very thin indeed. Behind it is the truth that scientific determinism is an ideology which is fundamentally anti-human and pro-Authoritarian.

The insidious nature and consequence of both the Christian and Scientific determinist metaphysical premise of the fundamental non-existence of the Individual Self is that man shall therefore not be ALLOWED to exist AS an individual. Since all men are a function of the exact same determinist force (“God” or “Natural Law”) there is no possible individual distinctions to be made among them. Mankind is thus collectivized under the auspices of some fatuous, subjective, abstract ideal and then ruled by an Authority, usually the State, which acts as a surrogate—the physical incarnation of that ideal which exists to eradicate all expressions of individuality, as these are considered an imposter to reality.

Which it is…IF we concede the false metaphysical premise that the Self (You qua You) cannot exist. And by the authority of THIS foundational belief comes every and all manner of moral violation…everything from petty crime to the Holocaust. The idea that man is not in fact himself is the ideological root back to which all violence and violations of humanity can be traced.

Think about it. Man does not actually exist as himself. Thus he does not earn himself. His existence stems from a birth that provides him with ALL of his attributes—all that he IS—by mere accident; infinitely determined outcomes by the Infinite Determining Force, which is the infinite essence of all of reality and everything in it. Your existence has nothing to do with you…it’s not work; it’s not an action of you, and thus you cannot rightfully claim ownership of yourself and thus you cannot claim ownership of anything that proceeds from your existence. Your life is not your own because YOU are a lie. Your time, talent, property, family, business, labor…these are things over which you can claim no just ownership because you don’t even own yourself. You didn’t earn YOU, so you cannot claim to own anything that is a consequence of you.

We can sum all of that up with this simple maxim: You’re existence is a function of forces outside of you; you do not earn yourself and therefore you do not own yourself, and therefore you do not own anything you produce.

Of course it is hard to avoid the glaring contradiction in this determinist argument. In order to assert that you do not earn and thus do not own yourself, YOU must be assumed as de facto. In other words, the essence of the claim that “you do not earn yourself because you are a product of forces outside of you” is this: YOU do NOT (de facto) exist. However, the claim “you do not exist” is self-nullifying—a contradiction in terms, like “false truth” or “unknowable knowledge” or “infinite time”. In order to make any claim about “you” you must have an existential reference for “you”, and to have that reference “you” must by definition exist. In other words, you must exist in order to claim that “you do not exist”. The very notion itself is utterly dependent upon the presumed existence of “you”.

To be clear, the claim that “you do not exist” is not the same thing as saying something like “unicorns do not exist”. This is because the “you do not exist” is a metaphysical argument based upon “you”, which is a metaphysical premise, not merely a distinction between what is physically present verses what is only imaginary, cognitive or abstract. In other words, “you do not exist” more precisely means “you CANNOT exist”. That is, “you” are impossible to reality itself  in all its forms…physical, cognitive, object, abstract, etc.. “Unicorns do not exist” can never mean “unicorns cannot exist” simply because unicorns qua unicorns are NOT contrary to reality itself because they are not a metaphysical premise. Unicorns may exist in reality, though they may be limited to the imagination; the Self, or You qua You CANNOT exist in reality AT ALL, even in the imagination, because it is a metaphysical concept which is categorically contrary to determinist metaphysics.

*

”You” is an all or nothing proposition. You either absolutely are or you absolutely are NOT. But only one of these propositions is correct; only one does not self-nullify due to rational inconsistency. I submit that you ARE, period. “You” as a metaphysical premise cannot be parsed, divided, or distilled. “You” is irreducible. Your essence…your Self is a root metaphysical premise, and the proof is that you speak forth the pronoun “I” via an apprehension of its greater meaning in language in general and in communication. The very fact that this is a concept that can be meanginfully and efficaciously formed and communicated is proof that you ARE. “I” would be infinitely impossible as a concept were it a metaphysical fallacy and thus anathema to existence and reality. “I” is either devoid of all context within reality or it IS the context for reality, itself, and irreducibly so. And as you have no other reference, and will NEVER and can NEVER have any other reference for reality, this statement MUST be true: You are you; You qua You is, in fact, a thing.

And by your ability to be you, you EARN you and all of the characteristics which make you YOU in the practical sense; and therefore you own you and thus own all which exists as a willful consequence of you.

END

How Christians and Secularists Both Define You as Nothing (Part ONE)

The other day my daughters received a thank-you note from a sweet little old lady to whom they had given a small homemade gift on Easter Sunday. The valediction read “May you continue to use the gifts that God has given you.”

And within those sweet little words we find the devil. And thus began quite a long lecture—given to my girls on the spot—on the dangers of ideologies which reduce existence to an idea which enslaves them to authoritarianism for the rest of their lives. That idea is that life and existence are UNEARNED. And though Christians are more ostensibly to be blamed for this evil, the idea is in fact a foundational component of secular metaphysics as well.

Wow. Hmm. Where to even begin. This is tough. There is so, so much wrong with this that it’s like trying to determine which of a thousand maurading orcs I should decaptiate first.

Let’s start with the obvious and aforementioned presumption that one’s talents are gifts. Which implies that they are unearned. So, let’s work backwards to the premise, and from this we shall then have our conclusion as to what this really means…and we will see how sinister it is.

You want to build a cabin, but you have no tools. So someone gives you them. You don’t work for them, they are gifts. Now, you might have “earned” them in the sense that the giver must like you or at least value you as a human. So that’s something. I mean, you didn’t work for them, but you can argue that there’s some inherent value to yourself that serves as the reason why one would give you something out of the profits of their own time and labor.

So, can you call the cabin you build from gifted tools your own? Yeah. Probably. I mean, you’d have to thrown in the obligatory “I could never have done it without you” platitude pretty much every time you had the person over, but they’d be hard pressed to take any real credit for your work, or even more, to claim some kind of shared ownership of it.

What about if the materials for the cabin were gifted, too? Hmm…getting a bit harder to claim that you’re the sole owner of it. At this point, you could still call it yours, and appeal to the meaning of the word “gift” as grounds for sole property rights, but you’d probably have to give the gift-giver carte blanche when it came to using the cabin. They probably could convince you to allow them to come and go at will and to stay for as long as they felt comfortable.

What if they also gifted you the land on which to build the cabin? Now its harder still to claim it as soley yours. But still, it’s a gift, right? And a gift means that you now own the thing gifted and thus can do as you please with it.

True, perhaps in object principle. But let’s be honest, here. When that much is gifted, propriety, etiquette, social convention, and basic consideration at this point imply and, I submit, necessitate a level of gratitude that begins to bleed over into obligation. It’s “your” cabin, but only in abstract principle at this point. Still…you could make a claim based on the strict meaning of the word “gift”.

What if the food and water were also given to you so that you had the energy to build the cabin? And the clothes and the work gloves and the work boots?  And the medical insurance in case you got injured, and the pick-up truck for trips to the hardware store and lumberyard; and the gas for the truck and the insurance for it?  And the fees for the permits, and the water which will be piped into the cabin, and the electricity which will power the appliances and provide heat and air conditioning? What if all the training on how to build the cabin was also a gift? No fees. Just a free ride at the vocational school of your choice?

Well, you might still appeal to the very definition of “gift” to make the case that the cabin belongs solely to you. After all, you might argue, this is pretty much what it means to be a parent. You provide all of these things to your children so that they can go out and build their lives and you don’t necessarily claim to own the things they acquire after they leave home and start their independent lives. And true this may be, but lets’s be honest. There is still some expectation placed upon the children. All things normal, it wouldn’t be considered anything less than rank insult if the children left home, with all the knowledge and resources the parents have provided, and then declined to have anything to do with them. So, there is some quid pro quo expected, even in the parent-child context.

At this point we must begin to face the obvious. “Gift” doesn’t really imply no strings attached. In fact I would say it’s quite the opposite. Which is why when there are no strings attached to a gift, the giver usually has to make that specifically clear:

Hey, Bill. Got you this new putter. And don’t think you have to pay me back…this is my treat, and I’m not looking for you to return the favor. No sir, not one iota. No strings attached, bro.” 

Still, you could argue a technical right to categorical ownership. One is never obliged to give a gift, and thus the recipient can’t technically be obligated to provide return value. I mean, yes, you can make an ethical argument, which is compelling and is the norm in real life, but “legally” the receiver of the gift is not on the hook to return the favor at all.

So, while it’s unlikely, we could at least at this point technically say that God has given us, as gifts, the talents we have and use. It doesn’t mean that we necessarily owe him anything or that we didn’t necessarily earn the gifts. I mean, we could say that we “earned” them in the way that children earn the gifts of their parents. Certainly there is value endemic to the children in their very person that compels parents to provide nice things for them, right? And similarly God could be said to give us gifts because there is inherent value to us, in and of ourselves, that drives God’s desire to give us skills and talents and potential, right?

Sure…this is all possible, if we don’t wade any further into the quicksand of untenable Christian metaphysics. And frankly, the idea that we aren’t obligated to God in EVERYTHING and in EVERY WAY is complete anathema to the church.

Now, I wouldn’t be doing my job if I stopped here. To explore Christian metaphysis no further than this is why the Church is the rational disaster that it is. Thus far, though we are speaking technically, it still sounds relatively hunky dory. God gives us our talents as gifts because he loves us. Of course in our gratitude we’d use them “for his glory”, as they say. But we still own them, and this is because we are valuable to him.

Of course, in order for us to be valuable to God there must be an actual “we” somewhere in the equation. Meaning we must have an existence of our own, independent of God, for us to be loved and thus the recipients of his affectionate gifts.

And here is where Christain metaphysics take their inexorable sinister turn. This is where all the talk of love and value and affection and gifts goes right down the toilet. Because the truth is that there IS NO WE.  There is no “me” to me. And no “you’ to you. And you’ll see what I mean as we move further along with our cabin example.

So, we’ve already hypothesized that our resources, including clothes and food and education and tools and raw materials, are all gifts to us. Let’s take it a step further. What if your vision is also a gift. What if your very ability to see the nail in order to hit it with the hammer was given to you…you didn’t work for it, didn’t earn it. It’s a true gift. And what if your ears and hands and feet are gifts, too? And your very brain, and all therein, and thus your very capacity for learning; and the roots of that capacity, as well—your innate potential to be good at this or that…your natural, genetic proclivities, like your IQ, your talent for abstract thinking and organization, and your creativity.

Not seeing a whole lot of “you” in the mix are you now? Starting to feel a little squeezed, huh? Starting to wonder just who it is that is receiving these gifts. You’re starting to see that there is a very fine line between “you” and “that which you have been gifted”.

Well, that make senses. Because the root premise is that there is no line. Because there is no distinction. Because there is no you at all.

Your DNA is a gift. Your genes are gifts; and the interaction of the genes by which you are formed in the womb, and the atoms and molecules, and the inherent ability of these things to interact in meaningful and efficacious cause-and-effect ways…these are all gifts, too. The very ability of any of these things which make up you at your most fundamental physical root are God’s gifts. And beyond the physical then we must go, deeper and further until “gifts” comprise all of your reality, and your existence, itself. The very ESSENCE of you—the ABILITY of you to BE you—is not of you, it’s a gift. Indeed it’s no strain on credulity at this point to admit that YOU, YOURSELF, are a gift.

In other words, YOU are given by God…as a gift to YOURSELF.

But wait. That doesn’t work. YOU cannot be something God gives TO YOU. If your “you-ness” isn’t of you then there is no you in the first place in which TO GIVE YOU.

And now we have arrived. This is the whole point.

When a sweet little old lady tells you to “use the talents God has given you” she is actually implying many, many Satanic things, which is disappointing and terrifying.

She is implying that your talents, and thus ALL of the fruits of those talents is unearned. This is meant to stem the sin of “pride”, but “pride” is only sinful when it is irrational. To say I am a better man than you simply because I am rich and you are poor (I promise you I’m not, by the way) is an example of pride as a sin. To claim that a cabin I built is a wonderful cabin and to take responsibility for its beauty and functionality is NOT sinful pride. It’s merely a statement of fact: my hard work has EARNED me a beautiful cabin of which I certainly can, and I would argue MUST, be proud. But Christain metaphysics make no such distinction at all. You see, because your very talents are gifts from God, you can fundamentally take no pride of ANY kind in anything. You cannot claim to have done anything, in and of yourself; you can claim no ownership nor credit for any thing of value you create. Without your talents, you can do nothing productive…because “talents” is a broad, broad category. Everything from your intelligence and creativity to your physical deftness and dexterity, attention to detail, your wit, your ability to organize, your innate understanding of color, your conscientiousness, your photographic memory, your compassion, empathy…and on and on and on. And this evil, false, thoroughly anti-Biblical idea of “talents as gifts” or “talents on loan from God”  has been used by the church to guilt, terrify, manipulate, and exploit the masses of believers for thousands of years.

Next, the sweet old lady’s words imply that one can draw some kind of objective and verifiable distinction between “you” and “your talents”. As though there is any frame of reference for yourself ABSENT the very things that make you YOU, like your creativity and intelligence, contentiousness and organizational skills, your physical dexterity…etcetera, etcetera. These are all things that distinguish you from others. Without these things, who exactly are you to me or anyone else? Take away my wife’s tremendous organizational skills, her intelligence, her extraordinary work ethic, her compassion, her careful and caring nature, and yes, even her occasional rush to judgment, her critical disposition, and her relentless drive to finish her list of chores which never ends, and I don’t know her at all. Take away her talents, and even her foibles, and you take her away from me.

The claim that man has no innate and inherent talents that really belong to him, and BECAUSE of him, and from and to none other BUT him, represents—when followed back to its premise, and then pursued to its logical conclusion—the very death of man, and God by proxy. This is the premise: that God made YOU, entirely, completely out of nothing, or out of something completely NOT you. And thus there is nothing constant…no you QUA you, and thus you can claim NO aspect of yourself that you fundamentally own from beginning to end, and thus you can claim to have earned NOTHING that you acquire and possess in life. It doesn’t belong to you because there is no you.

This premise is the bane of man, and has been an excuse to terrify, torment, and murder human beings for thousands and thousands of years. It is evil. It is not true. It should be rejected for the rank lie that it is.

The dirty little secret behind “the gifts God has given you” is that there is NO YOU at all.  You are nothing. A placeholder for “God’s will”, or “nothing”; at best you are merely a character in the cosmic play of God’s divine determinist plan. You are an illusion…a name on a page, an actor without will. You have no Self, and therefore you have no right to anything. Not even your very existence.

In the next article I will explain why this idea, or a semantically different form of it, is loved and adored by many strains of secularists and scientific determinists the world over, who only THINK they are different from the Christains they ridicule as blind and/or stupid.

END PART ONE

Memory Implants: Another impossible sci-fi trope

Implanting memories on some unsuspecting, or suspecting, victim or person…make them believe that they have done or said this or that by giving them a memory, from OUTSIDE of them. They thus accept it was derived FROM (or within) them. We’ve seen it more than once in fiction…and fiction is where it shall remain, I’m afraid.

Think about it…think about how this idea contradicts all rational consistency, and thus must contradict all practical utility. Before a memory implant could actually induce a memory one would need to implant, as a necessary corollary to the memory, a sense of SELF…an “I” to serve as the constant…that is, the existential frame of reference for the memory. For without this reference, there can be no memory. There may be an image—like a mental picture—but not a memory, which is a very, very different thing. A memory is a personal experience; and an experience, to be personal, needs one’s singular existential frame of reference. The memory is ACTIVELY manifest by the personal and singular experience of the ACTOR, not DICTATED to him by another…this is why it’s a memory and not merely a mental image. I can think of a green car, but the memory of the green car I saw parked at the store yesterday is a memory because it is in my mind not as an abstraction, but as an OBJECT which I physically ACTED upon to and of and from my SELF…I SAW it. The memory requires me to be an active participant/observer; the mere mental image does not. And for one to be an active (conscious) observer requires an “I”—a Self—and that can only come from within, not from without. MY singular sense of MY SELF, which is the crux of memory, cannot be implanted into me from outside of me. It is not dictated TO me, it IS me, and “me” (me qua me) is absolute, and absolutely necessary to make a memory a memory. The metaphysical ME is the foundation of all memory.  Memory is grounded in the ontological singular frame of reference, which acts upon the physical (through the senses) to create one’s wholly unique existential experience.

So, no, memories cannot be implanted from one to another. One, from THEIR singular ontological frame of reference, cannot experience FOR another, and thus cannot GIVE them a memory. There is no way to do this since by definition one cannot BE another FOR them. The idea of a “memory implant” is a fundamental violation of rational human identity, in which case, there is no “one” to whom a memory can be given. The idea of a memory implant collapses upon the very logical fallacy, making the whole endeavor a categorical waste of time. We can psychologically manipulate another person, control them by deception and suggestion, but we cannot BE them FOR them. An implant may one day control the mind of another through manipulation of the brain, but this is only euphemistically called a “memory implant”. You may be convinced that you experienced something you did not actually experience, but you cannot ACTUALLY experience what you did NOT ACTUALLY experience.  And this is the subtle, but profound, difference. One is psychological manipulation, the other is memory.

And this topic relates to why I have asserted, and continue to assert, that it is impossible for consciousness to be created OUTSIDE of itself…this is one of the great rational and philosophical paradoxes.  Consciousness, for a human, for a computer, for an android, artificial or organic (not that I accept that consciousness has been achieved “artificially”, or that it will or can be achieved) may involve the actions of humanity or nature or God, but it will never be CAUSED or CREATED by them, fundamentally. Consciousness represents a wholly singular ontological perspective…it is absolute, period, and thus is only and can only be a product of Itself. The root of man is his identity of SELF, and this is utter—absolute. There is no before it which can be claimed by it except FROM it; there is likewise no after. In order to speak of “before I was”, I must BE; in order to speak of “after I am”, I must BE. The ontological constant is the Self…and the Self is, was, and shall ever be.  It is infinite. And this is the mark of God upon man.

“I” cannot be function of “NOT I”; consciousness has no frame of reference for a cause outside of Itself. If it could be created or caused from outside itself it could not exist. To say “my memories were given to me”, or “my Self came from another”, is like saying “there is no such thing as absolute truth” or “it is impossible to know ultimate truth”. The claim completely nullifies its assertion. It’s rational madness; dead on arrival. Mouth noise.

For the same reason that “you” cannot also be “me”, and “me” cannot also be “you”, “I” cannot cause “you”, and “you” cannot cause “I”. This metaphysic may be paradoxical, yet it IS rationally consistent and, I would submit, even consistent with empirical reality. The very reason why man is able to exist and thrive is because the natural root of his powers of conceptualization and language is that meaning NEEDS a reference, and that MUST then imply “I”. “I am” must be BEFORE meaning can be determined.  “I” is not dictated, IT does the dictating. “I” is not created, IT is the creator.

END

Divine Creation and Evolutionary Process are Philosophically Identical and Therefore are Identical in Their Philosophical Insufficiency

Not being designed by God or evolution for flying, man flies highest; not being designed for digging, man digs deepest; not being designed with thick fur, man is warmest; not being designed with fangs or claws or camouflage, man is the deadliest and best defended.

This is because man has not been designed, you see, it is that he is the designer. And this is the Divine Image in him.

*

It is an impossible task to rationalize the claim that man is designed by God or Nature to observe or conceptualize himself as specifically and absolutely DISTINCT from these things. Because by “design”, the root assertion is that man is NOT in fact, himself at all, but is a DIRECT function of the powers which have designed him. In other words, “designed by” really means “entirely created by”, which really means “absolutely a function of”, which means that all that man, and his reality, is and does is utterly DETERMINED by the Creative Force.

And just like that science and religion utterly unite in metaphysics.

How can God or Nature determine that man should observe God or Nature, and all of that which is a function of Him/It—that is, Reality, Itself—from OUTSIDE of Him/It? For he who is absolutely determined by divine or evolutionary Force can by no rational means observe and conceptualize a distinction between himself and that which determines him.

Determinism, you see, is not a physical phenomenon or an adjunct religious doctrine, but a METAPHYSICAL premise. It asserts that whatever IS, does not, in itself, exist, but is merely an expression of the Determining Force, either God or Nature. It is scientifically “proven” by appealing to empirical “cause and effect”, but the the presupposition which makes determinism in fact deterministic, and thus “cause and effect” a thing which is said to be efficacious and practical in reality, is that there is no ACTUAL distinction between the two. The cause utterly creates the effect; which means, at root, that the cause IS the effect. For if the two are separated, intrinsically, then they cannot exist.

Determinism as a metaphysic, whether ceded to be a function of God or Nature, despite what you might hear, allows for NO distinction of any kind between the Determining Force and the determined thing. To make a distinction is to concede that the thing which is being determined possesses a root essence, or really, an existence, which is of ITSELF, and not of that which determines it. In this case, the thing which exists of itself is caused upon by the Determining Force fundametally because IT is ABLE, intrinsically of ITSELF, to be caused upon. Without the inherent, endemic ability of the “determined” object to be acted upon by the “Determining Force”, there is no determining action, and thus there is NO Determining Force. Meaning that the Determining Force is entirely subordinated to the inherent and endemic ability of the object to be acted upon.

So here is the root, self-nullifying contradiction of Determinism, whether divine or evolutionary:

Without a distinction between the Determining Force and that which is determined, there can be no determinism because there is NOTHING (no thing OF ITSELF which is being caused upon) to determine, and thus by definition no Determining Force. Yet if there IS a distinction then there can likewise be no determinism, and thus no Determining Force, because what actually—that is, fundamentally—causes the object to “react” to the force which compels it is not the Determining Force but rather the root ABILITY of the object to be caused upon by the Force in the first place. It is this ability, and not the Determining Force, which is the source of ALL of its behavior, including EXISTING, which makes its very existence a thing of itself, and to itself, and nothing else, at root. Which means that the Determing Force is not actually determining anything at all, which means it, unlike the thing it is said to determine, does not actually exist.

Due to its inexorable, intrinsic, self-nullifying rational contradiction, the Determining Force, be it God (as religion currently and for the most part defines Him…which is wholly irrational and therefore a lie) OR Nature, is relegated to the category of pure abstraction; utterly useless with respect to any philosophy of virtue and integrity and intellectual honesty/consistency. As a determining force, God or Nature is not REAL in the ontological, empirical, physical sense, and therefore is irrelevant in the metaphysical sense (the metaphysical being the substrata of the physical). All that is said to be determined actually determines itself, we might say (and human consciousness (will and choice) is THE practical manifestation of this, I submit).

And thus is the irreconcilable schism, at the most fundamental level, within the ideal of a divine or evolutionary creative force. Because of the contradiction inherent in the proposition (that that which exists is intrinsically a function of an all-determining Force), the proposition, though it may have some practical utility (e.g. science as a means of technological progress), this utility is  limited, and substantially so, I aver. Man may progress only so far as his metaphysical premises will take him, and the overwhelming and prevailing determinist metaphysics underwriting virtually all of science and religion/spirituality can and will NEVER rationally nor efficaciously describe reality qua reality. And if man doesn’t truly understand reality he doesn’t truly understand himself. Which ultimately makes ALL of his ideas fundametally destructive, because they necessarily affirm the notion of the insufficiency, irrelevance, and incongruency of man as a CONSCIOUS being. And this means that the only rational purpose of man qua man (man AS HIMSELF) is to die.

END

The Cognitive Dissonance of “Easy Contradiction”: Why I am accused of being too rigid and abstruse (PART TWO)

I am a “black and white” absolutist philosopher simply because I deny that black can also be white at the same time…that A is also B, that the square is also the circle, that what IS simultaneously IS NOT.  The fact that I reject rank contradiction, which is the bane and the intellectual, moral, and rational failure of pretty much ALL world philosophies, makes me much too petulant and pedantic and confusing to pass for a serious thinker.  I boil down to a thin, simmering layer of arcane (at best) ideology, selfishly demanding that 2+2 not equal both 4 AND 5, and throwing a temper tantrum when this childish demand is not met.

Hmm…

I must say I find it both ironic and hypocritical that so often this criticism comes from some of the most rigid ideologues the world has ever spawned:  Christians.  Usually of the orthodox pedigree.

Hmm…

If you are a church member today in good standing, I dare you to try espousing the virtue, or even the mere possibility of virtue, of any other doctrine or theology, be it from another religion altogether or merely a deviation from orthodox Biblical interpretation.  Suggest even a mild stray from traditional thinking, like, say, questioning the moral necessity and efficacy of abstaining from profanity, and watch what happens nine times out of ten.  You’ll be met with polite but utterly categorical disregard, and tacitly denounced as nurturing abject wickedness.  You’ll soon be tagged as a likely insurrectionist…one to watch out for, and there will be a hyper-vigilant monitoring of your presence and influence.  Now, dare stray from a truly cornerstone doctrinal issue, like the Trinity or Pedestination or Penal Substitution, and all but the very slimmest pretense of civility goes right out the stained-glass window.  You will be explicitly denounced as an emissary of Satan…an apostate of the worst kind.  Overnight those “Christians” who were once so emphatically and eternally devoted to you and your family become, effectively, total strangers.  You may retain a smattering of “rebels” who are willing to risk eternal damnation to send you an email now and again, or to get together for coffee, but make no mistake, the vast majority of your “church family” will have held court without you, denounced you as a traitor and a wolf, and will divorce you from their reality entirely.  You are dead to them.  No, worse than that.  You are never-born to them.

Don’t believe me?  Go ahead and try.  See what happens.  I dare you.  Walk up to your nearest member of the church leadership next Sunday and tell them that you have rejected the doctrine of Original Sin, Total Depravity, the Fall of Man, and/or the Trinity, as irrational and unbiblical.  When the leadership and its sycophants eventually engage you for the purposes of “gentle correction”, explain to them that none of those terms appear in Scripture, ever, anywhere.  When they mellifluously tell you that the spirt of scripture clearly implies that such doctrines be absolutely true, ask them when “clearly implies” stopped being an oxymoron, and where scripture implies that one also means three, God controls all things yet doesn’t control them because man is still responsible for his sin and sin nature, or that punishing the innocent for the sake of the guilty is a moral duty (with respect to Penal Substitution).

Watch what happens. After a merely ceremonious appeal to divine enlightenment followed by some rational equivocation, they’ll pull the “God’s chosen Authority” card and you’ll be banished as an imposter and interloper.  And then you will feel the stress of yet another completely irrational and unbiblical doctrine oft employed by Christians:  Excommunication.

So, yes, I find it just a little bit precious when I AM the one called “absolutist” and “unforgiving” for merely refusing to accept that “tree” also means “mailbox”.  In psychology, I believe they call that kind of thing “projection”.

*

I find it insulting and intellectually lazy when my ideas are labeled too abstruse or confusing…too full of enigmatic, circumspect rationalizations; too unwieldy for any practical use.  Just too damn hard to understand.

Okay.  Here’s a list of ideas that apparently are not too hard to understand, if you’ll indulge me.  And in this list you will see arguments and ideas I have encountered from not just Christian circles, but political and scientific as well.  And this is just a mere fraction of the conflicted ideas I have stumbled across in my attempts to get at a rationally consistent interpretation of reality.  And make no mistake, these ideas are taken very seriously by the most accomplished and prodigious intellectuals in the world, and are often also accepted wholesale as axiomatic by the vast majority of laypersons.

-Government exists to protect private property, and it obtains the resources to do so through the tax code, which takes one’s private property by force.  This is thought to be not only completely rational but many times a moral necessity!

-Libertarians want to reduce the size of government by running for office.  In other words, they intend to use the power of the government to reduce the power of government.

-God is infinite and man is finite.  This means hat the finite and the infinite co-exist.  In other words, what is infinite stops where finite begins.  In other words, “limited infinity” is a thing.

-Time and space were created at the Big Bang. In other words, the Big Bang never actually happened, since it has neither a location nor an instant.

-Space is a vacuum.  Wormholes are holes in space.  In other words, there are physicists seriously considering the reality of holes inside another hole.

-We often hear the phrase “beginning of time”.  Of course, time is the beginning.  In other words, there is such a thing as the beginning of the beginning.

-Atheists don’t believe in God, and assert that the concept of God is completely irrational whilst simultaneously appealing to omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, infinite, untouchable, transcendent powers called the “Laws of Physics” which are invisible as distinct from the objects they supposedly control and create.  In other words, atheism is polytheism, soon to be monotheism once the geniuses at MIT and Cambridge get around to discovering the “answer to everything.”

-Scientists claim that the observer is a function of what he observers.  In other words, the observer observes himself from outside himself.

-Consciousness is a direct function of unconsciousness (categorically unconscious natural law).  In other words, consciousness is an “illusion”…which in this case is a euphemism for “doesn’t actually exist”.  So what exactly is it an illusion of?

-It is true to claim that absolute truth cannot be known, and that the inability of man to truly know anything absolutely is intellectually and morally meaningful to him.  In other words, its very important to know that you can’t know.

-Einstein’s theory of time travel implies that such travel is both to the future and the past,  depending ENTIRELY on the observer, making time travel so completely relative that it becomes functionally meaningless.  In other words, time travel is both possible and ABSOLUTELY irrelevant…which is to say, possible and impossible.

Now, this is what I have gleaned from that short list.  Apparently, for my philosophy to be sufficiently digested by the masses and made fit for practical employment, I must somehow find a compromise—in gentler terms…what is meant is actually a synthesis—between mutually exclusive concepts.  This will make me warm and fuzzy and comfortable and relatable and rational.

And here it seems I’ve stumbled upon yet another contradiction to add to the list.  It never seems to end.

*

All right, let us finally put away the rabbit and hat and reveal just how the logical magic trick of contradiction (often mislabeled, either deliberately or unknowingly, as “paradox”) is performed.  Humanity has for too long accepted that contradiction is a legitimately rational means of reconciling extremely complex or seemingly unresolvable concepts, or explaining observations (e.g. the wave-particle duality of light) that are not easily integrated into linguistic paradigms.  In other words, humanity has consistently revealed itself to be, in unfortunately typical fashion, intellectually lazy on the whole.  Or at least, too willing to accept intellectual insufficiency as the apogee of man’s mind.  The reason why it’s easier to “understand” contradiction as “truth” is simple:  because there’s NOTHING to understand.  And I mean literally.  To declare that A is also B makes both A and B…well, nothing.  A is also Not A; and B is also Not B.  By this methodology we get a complete vacuum of meaning…a hole in one’s consciousness instead of a truth.  The assertion that the square is also the circle is to admit that you cannot actually say which is which, and this, ultimately, only means that you have thrown up your hands and surrendered reality to…well, who knows?  You cannot say, because you’ve rejected the means by which anything is said at all.  And if you have surrendered your grip on reality by accepting even a tincture of contradiction as somehow commensurate with truth, then you have spoiled the entirety of understanding.  A pinch of leaven leavens the whole batch, so it is said, and this is true likewise of contradiction.  To claim even one contradiction as truth is to render the entirety of reality ITSELF a contradiction.

If you find my ideas too arcane and rigid, and too aggrandizing of human reason, then I humbly submit that this has nothing to do with the actual substance of my ideas and everything to do with the fact that you have become shamefully complacent in your thinking, and have compounded this error with ignorance.  That one who asserts that mutually exclusive concepts can be synthesized to form truth, or that truth is a measure of degrees, or that the key to understanding is realizing that humanity lacks sufficiency for fundamental understanding…yes, that the one who peddles this mystical, ethereal, esoteric, senseless, pseudo-spiritual bromide should suggest that I am the one whose ideas are much too far beyond the boundaries of human sensibility is exceedingly facile.  I might even say amatuerish.  If you struggle to comprehend the axiom that there can be no such thing as a square circle, then might I suggest you glance in a mirror to discover just which one of us is the real rational grifter.

And look, I get your oblique point.  Unraveling contradictions that have been accepted as axiomatic of reality and truth for often hundreds of years or more can seem exceedingly tedious, complex, full of ostensible random minutia, and just plain nonsensical.  But that this is MY fault is an accusation I refuse to accept.  I am not the one who built whole civilizations out of bullshit.  Civilization and all of its bullshit—from the Church to the State and all of the the little religious and scientific determinism bullshit in between—was already here when I got here.  And this is precisely my point.  It’s not okay to fault me, intellectually or morally, for a problem I did not create; nor is it okay to condemn me for the mess a fully ensconced contradiction makes when it is finally extracted.  Don’t blame the paramedic because the bandages get hella bloody.

END

Don’t Let Them Fool You: Mystery vs Paradox vs Contradiction

The staggering degree to which these terms are conflated, either out of ignorance or a desire to manipulate, is shocking.  As I have mentioned many times on this blog, I was a reformed orthodox Christian for about 35 years, including 15 in the “soft” cult of Sovereign Grace Ministires.  At SGM, when they weren’t busy covering up first degree felonies, like the sexual abuse of minors, they liked to refer to themselves as “reformed charismatic”.  And this I suppose was the first time I became conscious of the great orthodox bugaboo: contradiction as Truth.  Some years after, when I began to ardently examine the doctrinal claims of orthodox Christianity through the lens of rational consistency, I started seeing this sophist tactic all over the place.  I mean, once you learn to find the contradictions, it becomes harder to discern what ISN’T a contradiction than what is.  I mean, name the doctrinal premise—double imputation, penal substitution, Original Sin/Fall of Man, biblical inerrancy and authority, faith alone, pervasive depravity and sin nature, forgiveness, salvific belief, the Holy Spirit and divine enlightenment, Total Depravity; Uncontitional Election; Limited Atonement; Irresistible Grace; Perserverence of the Saints (the five pillars of Calvinism, T.U.L.I.P.), complimentarianism, etcetera, etcetera—and you will find little more than a bubbling witches brew of contradiction and self-defeating arguments.  Once you know what to look for, let me tell you, the circus of Christian orthodoxy is quite a show.

And how does the Christain Ecclesiastic Authority, in whatever Catholic or Protestant form it may take, get away with this?  How do they convince masses upon masses of ostensibly intelligent and successful lay memebers to part with their hard earned resources and make Orthodox Christianity a billions-of-dollars-a-year-racket?  By intellectual make-believe.  Take a contradiction, put it into the transcendent context of “divine enlightenment” and, as Philospher John Immel oft says, “Alakazaam…poof!!”, we get God’s Mystery…the Holy Paradox.  The Holy Paradox being, incidentally, the fifth member of the Trinity, just after “Bible”.

In this article, I’m going to explain the real difference between these three concepts…contradiction, mystery, and paradox.  Understand the distinctions, and I can promise that you will avoid the intellectual, philosophical, and theological miasma that will permanently stunt your spiritual growth.  Contradiction-as-truth is the hard drug of Christian theology.  Break the habit and you will save your soul.

Just a quick note…I’m not going to quote dictionary definitions.  This tired and formulaic approach to academic discourse is, to me, a mark of the untalented and/or uninspired.  I will define these concepts in my own terms within the context at hand—specifically, but perhap not exclusively, the church—in the interest of keeping things more punchy and less clinical.  It’s more fun this way, trust me.

Contradiction:

A contradiction is merely the assertion that two or more mutually exclusive concepts are, in fact, compatible.  When we are speaking of ideas, doctrine, theology, philosophy, and so on, you will note a contradiction in some form or fashion this way:

A claim to know that something is true, yet that thing necessarily and/or by definition incorporates two or more mutually exclusive concepts, and predicates its “truth” upon the idea that these incompatible concepts are somehow entirely compatible.  It assumes and expects you to also assume that what are overtly and objectively opposite notions are somehow corollary.  Up is also down; black is also white; the square is also the circle.

Example:

  1. Total Depravity:  Man is responsible for his own practical moral failures and yet is born depraved in his nature.  (Incidentally, the oft-responded notion that Total Depravity doesn’t mean that we are as bad as we could be is also a rank contradiction in terms, by definition…”total” does not mean “partly”, but intellectual license is cheap and easy when you can appeal to “divine enlightenment” instead of reason.  Any old dope can claim to “know” things if he doesn’t actually have to explain them.  Telling people that they will understand once they “believe” (meaning when God reveals it to them by magic) is merely saying that they will understand once they agree.  Which is, again, a contradiction in terms.  Like I said…it just never ends.)  That man is BORN depraved is saying that man, existentially, IS evil, and thus in his natural, absolute Self, cannot do any good thing.  This is PRECISELY the argument for why all men need Jesus—-because all men have sinned because why?  Because they MUST sin!  Because of their nature.  Because they are born sinners.  All Good is a function of God’s divine power and enlightenment upon man who is existentially unworthy and, of himself, alone, unable to receive it.  And yet man is morally responsible for his evil as though he can know the difference between good and evil and can choose the latter over the former.  The contraction is this, in a nutshell:  Man IS totally evil, and yet man also responsible for his evil as though he had a choice, which is why God judges him.
  2. God’s Divine Will:  All which happens is a product of God’s omnipotence.  Yet man’s consciousness is somehow real and relevant, and that man can know something, like God’s saving grace and his own natural sinfulness.  This is a contradiction in terms because if God possesses ominipotence then all which occurs in reality is either a function of God’s direct causal power or his “allowing” something to occur, which…means the same thing.  Nothing happens that God doesn’t directly control either via “action” or “inaction”.  In this context, man cannot develop an independent self-identity.  All man does is in reality a function of God’s doing, in which case, there is no point to nor possibility of man actually BEING himself.  For “being” is an action, which is not of himself, but of God, because of omnipotence. If man does not possess his own self, then he certainly cannot be self-aware.

Mystery:

A mystery is simply that which is unknown.  It is not, as Christian orthodoxy implies or outright asserts, that which is UNKNOWABLE.  The idea that God controls all things, yet man is morally responsible for his natural depravity and INEVITABLE evil actions; that God is in control of all things and yet simultaneously abhors the evil actions of men and demands sacrificial recompense…these things are not mysteries! These things are contradictions.  Christian orthodoxy labels its contradictions as “mysteries” because appealing to divine mystery is the most convenient way to conflate ideological folderol with God’s infinite wisdom, which, when presented in the context of soaring-if-not-insipid worship music, the histrionics and emotional blackmail of the pulpit, and the navel-gazing desperation of the congregation, can seem quite profound.  In reality, however, it is no more than pedestrian intellectual error of the kind found in the most nascent of human minds.  That is, in children.  It’s pretty sad.  And yet there it is, Sunday after Sunday, and making big money and casting a wide net of social and political influence.  So…perhaps it’s not so much sad as it is scary.

Example (of Mystery):

  1. How did the lion escape from the zoo when the cage was closed and locked? (A simple hypothetical mystery.)
  2. Why does the sun rise and set? (A historical mystery, henceforth solved.)
  3. How does an experienced hunter, tracker, and survival expert get lost and starve to death in terrain with which he is intimately familiar? (A hypothetical mystery which may never be solved.)

A mystery can be that which we do not yet know, which we did not know but now do, or that which only one man or a few men once knew and have taken the knowledge with them to the grave.  None of these things are “unknowable”…that is, the answers to the questions do not exceed the existential and epistemological boundaries of man’s identity.  Man’s identiy as “man”, and all that this naturally implies about his consciousness and cognitive capabilities, are the only frame of reference necessary to de-mystify the mystery.  The answers to the questions may rationally exist within man’s reality and will be defined according to reason.

Paradox:

This is, I submit, the most misunderstood and misused of the three concepts addressed in this article.  “Paradox” is not a synonym for “contradiction”…and yet this mistake has become so common that you find it almost as often as you find someone using the term “literally” to mean “figuratively”.  It’s become part of the common vernacular, and we don’t even bat an eye at the massive distortion in meaning it creates.  Paradox shares absolutely nothing in common with contradiction with respect to its own particular meaning, though it is true that one can be confused with the other based on incorrect assumptions or a lack of or misunderstanding about some amount of empirical evidence.

A paradox is something which can as of yet only be described by combining two or more mutually exclusive concepts, but which nevertheless MUST be true based on empirical evidence.  We might also say that a paradox is observably true, but conceptually false.  We cannot describe what we are seeing in terms that do not conflict.  Paradox, then, is only temporary…for any observed phenomenon can and must only be described in conceptual terms that are consistent.  To leave a paradox to a contradictory definition is, I submit, to divorce man from his own reality.  A reality which does not conform to man’s conceptualizing faculties (his reason) inevitably makes man irrelevant to reality.  The consequences of this are disastrous.  To claim that man can observe something he CANNOT and CAN NEVER describe is to drive a wedge between cognition/conceptualization and perception.  Man then, in the metaphysical sense, as a singular Self—the conscious Self, you you might say—becomes divorced from the determinative  cause and effect of “objective reality”.  Man qua man then becomes an imposter to reality, or at best an illusion…his awareness of Self—that by which he describes and defines “objective reality”  becomes, ironically, a paradox of nature—some determined cause of a determined effect prescribed by the blind and unthinking laws of nature.  The “I” of man—the individuality of the individual—is reduced to an ultimately irrelevant epiphenomenon of the utterly determined universe.  Man becomes a paradox which can have no conceptual solution because he doesn’t really, or at best, relevantly, exist.

And it doesn’t take a clairvoyant to see where this goes.

At any rate, a paradox, in summary, is that which is observed, and thus is real, but as of yet has not been explained in rationally consistent terms.

Example:

  1. The wave/particle duality of light.  That light is both a particle and a wave.  For light can be observed in both states, and thus is said to BE both, simultaneously.  As this is a contradiction in terms, we must assume that how light is observed probably has to do with the location of the observer and not with the idea that light both is and is not a wave and a particle at any given moment.
  2. That objects exist, an distinctly so, and yet all objects are comprised of a collection of parts, and thus no objects exist, because all objects are comprised of other objects, infinitely so.

END

Why Athiesm is Exclusive of Morality

Morality and ethics are not equivalent.  Morality is, in fact, simply a TYPE of ethics. Therefore it can be logically asserted that not all ethics are moral.

The other day I was watching a debate between Walter Block and Stefan Molyneux, both atheists and libertarians, on the Non-Aggression Principle, a specious code of libertarian ethics that includes both morality and legality.  Which…should tell you right there that libertarians either A. Haven’t thought their premises through, or B. They HAVE thought them through and simply don’t see the contradictions.  I’m not sure which is worse.

You can’t do that.  You either have moral ethics or you have legal eithics.  You can’t have both.  You cannot ethically obligate man to BOTH obedience AND choice.  Man cannot be free to choose how he shall act AND be forced to obey a legal code under pain of punishment.  And this is just one of several disturbing rational contradictions evident in libertarianism.  It may not be the most egregious, but it’s certainly rank.

During the course of the debate, the topic of morality came up, naturally, and Walter said something that was quite startling to me, and quite interesting as well.  He said he “didn’t understand this morality thing”…or something to that effect…if not those words exactly then it was pretty darn close. And it got me asking myself.  Does Walter not “get morality” because he’s a libertarian, or because he’s an atheist? Or both?

Well, I figured it couldn’t be libertarianism because libertarianism asserts the existence of moral behavior. So that left me with atheism…as a hypothesis, I mean. I understand there could be other reasons, like ignorance or personal experience or a different definition of what constitutes libertarianism, but going on what I can truly know for a fact about the man—that he’s an admitted atheist, and having some understanding of what that means in the formal sense—I decided to examine atheism.  I had some free time on my hands…my daughter was in a two hour dance class, so I slouched down on the stiff leather couch in the waiting room and had a think.

And it hit me.  The Christians are right.  Atheists cannot define morality.  Atheism, in fact, utterly precludes morality. Now don’t get me wrong, Christianity (as practiced by Christians in the Augustinian sense, which is pretty much all of it) precludes morality, too, and for the same fundamental reasons, just with different semantics.  But of course in this article we are discussing atheism.

Without going into the minutia of metaphysical premises (reality from fantasy) leading to epistemological conclusions (truth from lie) leading to ethical principles (right from wrong), I will, to keep things relatively short and accessible here, simply define the terms this way:  Morality is an Ethic which is referenced to the individual; Legality is an ethic which is referenced to the Law. At the root level of Ethical principles these two are completely incompatible, for the reasons I gave above. Man cannot be ethically obligated to both choice and obedience.  Moral action demands man choose his behavior for himself.  Legal action demands he obey an authority which dictates behavior.  In other words, morality is chosen good and legality is dictated good.

Morality demands thus that man must own himself, based on the premise that the individual—the Self qua Self (the singularity of “I”)—is the epistemological reference.  Reality is true because the individual is the Constant—that is, the reference for truth—which in turn makes the individual also the reference for ethics, as epistemology and ethics are corollary (truth has meaning and meaning has value; meaning is epistemology and value—the extent to which a thing is considered good—is ethics).

Legality on the other hand demands that an authority—the most obvious example being the state—must own the individual, based on the premise that there is no such thing as the Self qua Self, but that the individual is a function or product of some external-to-the-Self process or power, which makes epistemology and ethics entirely beyond the individual’s INDIVIDUAL (singular and conscious) frame of reference.  These processes or powers can be anything from the Laws of Nature or Physics to God’s Divine Will ex nihilo to some form of collectivist Ideal—the Nation, the Race, the People, the Workers, the Church, the Chosen, the Enlightened, etc.. Man thus, as an individual and the singular consciousness which he possesses (manifest through the natural use of the pronoun “I”), is an illusion, and all his thoughts and his will are therefore irrelevant and, more importantly, inadequate to EXISTENCE. This being the case, he must be compelled into ethical behavior by force.  And so with legal ethics, man’s obligation is obedience to the law, the law being whatever principle(s) the authority has decided to codify so that the metaphysical premise (natural law, collectivist Ideal, etc.) can be practically (socially) implemented. The law then is dictated in order that man can know those behaviors which he must perform, upon threat of punishment, in order to properly exist.  As a side note, notice the inherent irony here.  Man is given a law so that he can know how to behave. But if he needs a law to know how to behave then obviously “knowing” is an activity for which he is entirely insufficient.  The whole point of the law is to circumvent what I call the collectivist or determinist “Lie of Man”…that is, his irrational and illusory consciousness.  Thus, appeals to his “knowing how to act” are entirely hypocritical.  And you get this from Christians all the time, too, it’s not just a statist thing.  Man needs God to tell him what to do. But if God needs to tell man what to do then it’s implied that man cannot fundamentally know what to do on his own, which really means that he cannot know truth for himself.  In which case, he cannot really know ANYTHING, so God telling him what to do is hypocritical, irrational, and pointless.  Not exactly the characteristics of God I would pick, but that’s just me.

With moral ethics, man’s ethical obligation is to the individual. Thus, he himself, being an individual, is the ethical reference, and so he cannot obey a law OUTSIDE of himself, but instead CHOOSES to act in ethical ways within the context of his individual, not collective, existence.  That is, ways which do not violate the individual (and we will save the specific explication of what those ways are for another article). In short, moral ethics demand choice and preclude obedience; legal ethics demand obedience and preclude choice.

And, by the by, obedience is NOT a choice, or a form thereof.  You cannot choose to obey; because if you are choosing, then obedience is a moot concept; and vice verse.

*

I submit that atheism cannot be moral because it cannot recognize the existence of the individual qua the individual. Atheism MUST appeal to empiricism as a means of defining reality. For an atheist to assert that reality is rooted in anything other than the tangible, the observable, and the material is to assert that reality must be INTERPRETED, which means to appeal to a power or truth—that which provides and defines the interpretive lens—beyond what can be known by human observation. And as soon as we concede that reality is interpreted, not de facto as it presents itself ostensibly, then we must concede the reality of such an underlying power or truth. We could even claim it “transcendent”. Such a power/truth can indeed RATIONALLY be called “God”, whether it be God in the Christian sense—that is, in the sense of a deterministic, omnipotent, creative and causal agent—or simply as a general reference to that which utterly informs reality beyond mere perception.  In either case, “God” is a perfectly acceptable nomenclature for such a thing, despite the fact that most atheists, being on the whole average thinkers like most people, usually only think of  “God” in the narrow religious orthodox sense.

Now, here is where I will need to get a bit technical, because Athiests are very specific—pedantic even—about their definitions, so bear with me.

It is impossible that one concede the existence of an aforementioned power or truth whilst simultaneously claiming a lack of a belief in God.  Now, the reason I put it this way—a LACK of belief—and not merely a disbelief, has to do with how atheists, themselves, specify their position. Atheists do not disbelieve, as they explain it, but they LACK belief.  It may seem a merely semantic difference, but it’s actually quite profound. To disbelieve is to say that God does not exist. To lack belief is to say that God CANNOT exist.

“Does not” implies that whatever you’re referring to possesses some kind of underlying ability to act, making “ability” a possible root metaphyscial premise. But “cannot” takes ability out of the metaphysical equation. You see, if a thing doesn’t do existence, the subtle implication is that it DOES do other things. This naturally legitimizes the thing by tacitly conceding its inherent it power to act. Which in turn tacitly subordinates existence to the power to act, rendering the claim that it does not exist of no fundamental significance. But if a thing CANNOT exist, then there is no tacit concession that it does something else because “doing”, or “ability to do” never factors into the claim.  In other words, “does not” metaphysically subordinates existence to ability, whereas “cannot” makes ability existentially moot, and thus ipso facto makes existence the metaphysical premise, which is important since the whole point of atheism is to propagate the idea that God’s existence is a lie. If “existence” isn’t the plumbline for reality and truth, then atheism itself is basically irrelevant. Again, it’s technical, but VERY, VERY important, and allows us to make some extremely important assumptions about atheism, particularly with respect to morality.

When atheists claim that God CANNOT exist they are tacitly admitting that they define reality as entirely empirical. How on earth can they KNOW that God cannot exist? How on earth can they demand that only the theist is on the hook for giving proof for his assertions?  Simple. Because the atheist accepts only an empirical framework for reality. They make a metaphysical assertion and then demand that everyone accept it or they reject your ideas out of hand. This is an example of incredible intellectual dishonesty and hubris, not to mention hypocrisy, but it explains why their platform is first and foremost established upon a negative—what they DON’T believe, or beliefs they lack, instead of what they do or have. And why they focus on being disproved instead of proving themselves. It’s easy to claim a metaphysical primary and demand everyone agree to it. It’s much more difficult to prove your metaphysic and make THAT, not merely what doesn’t fit into it, the root of your movement.

*

Atheism by its very nature must assume that reality is empirical.

Now, merely proclaiming empirical reality doesn’t ACTUALLY EXPLAIN anything with respect to reality. Saying reality is empirical is a metaphyscial premise; the reasoning behind it is what matters, though. And this is why I have told atheists a thousand times that I don’t care about what the don’t believe, or what beliefs they lack, but what they DO…and by that I mean I want to know specifically WHY they believe that I should accept THEIR metaphysic. “Observation is truth” is not, itself, an argument. At all.

“Seeing is believing” begs the question: Seeing what? Of course, atheists cannot ultimately rely on concepts generated by mere human consciousness to define things, as consciousness not only says a tree is a tree but also spawns fantastical and irrational notions like “God”.  Consciousness is much too subjective, in other words, to provide an objective definition of what IS. Thus, atheists instead appeal what they accept as empirical systems of measurement, such as the scientific method, which allows the observable to be organized mathematically in order to give specific things common values…values which then can be transferred from one object to another, and from one place and time to another, with predictable results.

But find it a remarkable oversight of reason and common sense to presume, as atheists do, that A. Mathematics, though an utterly cognitive process, is somehow outside of human consciousness, and B. That mathematics is somehow a part of observable reality, when it exists precisely to translate the observable into ABSTRACT terms. And that’s translate, not transliterate. But I’m not sure they understand the difference.

It is so strange to me that atheists do not understand the scientific method and mathematics are a product of human consciousness. And to compound the flaw, this allows scientists to commit blatant fallacy by making the observer a product of what he observes. Somehow mathematics gets exempt from human consciousness and exists “outside” of man, even though it, like “God”, is, in such a context, infinite, omnipotent, and thus, utterly beyond the scope of human perception.

But what’s a little hypocrisy going to hurt, right? After all, 99% objective truth to a paltry 1% contradiction is a ratio that any reasonable person can live with. We can’t be expected to know everything? I mean, in our own narrow dimension and with a whole multiverse thing going on out there the complete truth is bound to be to some degree a perpetual mystery, right?

Hmmm. Now where have I heard that before?

Oh yeah. In church.

Anyway, the point I’m making is that empiricism naturally leads to science and mathematics as atheism’s de facto apologetics given that these are understood to be the plumbline for what constitutes objective reality.  And thus the assumption is that at root reality can ONLY be valued by mathematical measurement.  Math, the “language of the universe”, becomes for the atheist, the ghost in the machine…what gives all things their true essence. And yet somehow, in this case, it’s perfectly rational and empirical to believe in spirits. Through the  “Holy Ghost” of mathematics man can somehow know and define himself OUTSIDE of himself, which proves that there is no actual “outside” of himself at all, because “himself” is just a fluke. An illusion.  All things that ARE exist empirically and objectively. And “empirical” and “objective” do NOT include you qua you.

It’s an amazing display of rational gymnastics. Believe me, it’s not a trite, cute little argument to say that it takes as much faith to be an atheist as it does to believe in God.  It’s an axiom.

*

Because atheism = science = mathematics = scientific determinism, there can be no morality compatible with atheism because atheism precludes choice. It makes consciousness a product of natural law, which renders the individual’s will moot.  Thus, ethics cannot imply moral responsibility because determinism is about what you MUST do, not what you SHOULD do. And what you MUST do is an obligation, and obligation is not choice, but OBEDIENCE. He who is obligated to act in a certain way—because he is not a willful but a DETERMINED creature—cannot then be called “good” for acting that way. From the atheist’s point of view, you don’t choose to act, you simply act.  And the way in which you act you MUST act. You are FORCED to act by powers beyond the illusion of your Self. And this being the case, whatever you do, then, is ethical by definition. It’s not moral…that is, it cannot be given a value of good or bad, or right or wrong. But it is behavior that affirms the metaphyscial premise, and thus it IS ethical.  It is what is necessary; what is SUPPOSED to be.

The “natural law” of atheism thus necessarily strips morality from ethics.  And in the absence of morality, the only practical application of ethics is legality.  And this is why ethics debates amongst atheists like Stefan Molyneux and Walter Block are always centered either explicitly or implicitly around CODES of conduct…that is, ethical principles that are COLLECTIVE, applying to all men, because all men are, by virtue of natural law, ONE…that is, individuality becomes collective “oneness”. Ironic.

Some call these codes “laws”, and others, like Molyneux, call them “Universal Principles”. But they all mean one thing: obedience to authority. Atheists debate distinctions between “criminal behavior” and “moral behavior”, as if somehow these behaviors can co-exist at all, let alone in a single socio-political context. As I have already said, you can define behavior as legal or moral, ethically speaking, but you CANNOT define it as both. It is a rational impossibility.

Finally, I submit that since the notion of “law” implied by the empiricism of atheism is implicitly collectivist, any eithical system derived from atheism must also be collectivist. And collectivist ethics always manifest as an authority-submission dynamic, which demands that man COLLECTIVELY obey the law, not choose for himself to act morally.

Thus, atheism is tyranny.

Reason, Not Physics: Why miracles are possible

Say we have a medical issue…an injury, for example. If we accept the Laws of Physics as the arbiter of what is possible or impossible, and accept that these laws are the determinative mechanisms which govern all of reality (which is implicit in the laws themselves), then we must concede that we can only correct our injury according to the same rules which caused it.

So far so good…ostensibly.

The problem, however, is that in such a case, while it may seem a perfectly natural, logical, and efficacious assumption—intuitive even—we cannot make an OBJECTIVE moral value judgement between the injury and its remediation. Since they are both created, caused, and manifest by the exact same determinative rules, which, due to their necessary corollary relationship are at root a singularity, the only value judgement which can be rendered is entirely subjective—arbitrary—and therefore fundamentally meaningless.  For it is not possible to claim that one manifestation of the absolute governing mechanisms which define and compose reality is better or worse than another. Different manifestations of natural law observed by the individual are, fundamentally, morally indistinguishable, and thus any value judgements are completely subjective.  And if value judgements are subjective, then any epistemological (meaning/definitions) judgements are irrelevant, because morality and truth are corollary…for if one cannot morally value distinctions, then the definitions of those distinctions are ultimately useless to the individual. And this being the case, no actual distinctions—like “injury” or “healing”—can really be said to exist at all.

To summarize: Once moral distinctions can no longer be made, because all events are products of the same absolute, determinative natural laws, then no distinctions of any kind can be made. And if no distinctions of any kind can be made, then nothing can be said to exist, because it has become impossible to tell the difference between what something is and what something is not.  Natural law, thus, is entirely inadquate as an apologetic for objective existence, and thus it cannot rationally be said to serve as the plumbline for determining what is truly possible or impossible.

You see, once the perspective of the individaul has been rendered moot by subordinating his powers of perception and conceptualization to the absolute determinative forces of natural law, then the very thing which gives natural law any meaning and relevance at all—the observer—is pointless. And without the observer, there is no one to claim that natural law is actually true, or actually exists in the first place.  Natural law, itself, serves no purpose, because it wrecks the observer, who is the ONLY reference—the only constant—by which natural law can be said to have meaning and thus have value.  Purpose, value, and meaning are not a function of natural law, they’re a function of the observer.  That means MAN.  And that means you and me.  And that means we are NOT products of natural law…because the observer cannot be a function of what he observes.  This is a contradiction in terms, and is objectively impossible.  An observer who is a function of what he is observing is by definition NOT OBSERVING.

The very fact that the laws of physics can be defined at all is proof that they are not the root of objective reality.  They are a tool that man, the individual, the observer, uses to organize the distinction(s) between himself qua himself, and his environment (which also includes his body…but man’s body is not himself qua himself, but is ultimately and rationally a part of his environment…but this is quite a complex subject and is best left to its own article). The very fact that man can and MUST make a moral distinction between injury and healing is proof that the laws of physics cannot be the true arbiter of reality and thus are not the arbiter of possibility and impossibility.

I submit then that only that which violates the identity of the individual (the self qua the self) is impossible.  And since identity is a matter of reason—where reason is defined as rational consistency…the non-contradictory combination of concepts (X cannot simultaneously be Y, for example)—we can generalize this assertion to say that a violation of reason is the only impossibility, because contradiction cannot be made rational; and what cannot be made rational cannot ACTUALLY be defined, which means it cannot actually  exist.

So…you want proof that miracles are possible?

I give you the apologetics of reason.