Monday, May 15, 2006

Written in a Book

Listening to a radio station in my area which is ultimately owned by a church, I noticed they had a quick two minute anti- Davinci Code editorial.  The station presents itself as a news and traffic station and is said not to proselytize its owner's faith, although I hear an "on message" news or editorial item every 10 minutes on the nines, so to speak. The amazing irony is that the editorial contained the phrase "Just because it is written in a book doesn't mean it is true" as it tried to dissuade people from paying attention to the Davinci Code. I would refer the religious believers back to their own belief in things in books they believe are true. 

To truly understand life and the nature of the universe we live in, we must be ready to accept that things we hold true can be proved wrong by greater understanding. The religious method is to seek to confirm truth by personal spiritual experience. The trouble is, personal convictions cannot be peer reviewed or tested. Was Jesus divine? What is divinity? Is there a God? What is the nature of God?

There may well be a divine creator and many people seem to feel that there is. We will never understand the nature of God when we study our own inventions, like religion. When we seek to expand the edges of human knowledge and understanding with hope and wonder and the most rational, objective scrutiny, then this study of the known or study of knowledge will guide us all to real, verifiable and valueable truth.

What is the study of knowledge? SCIENCE.

Carl Sagan said, "It seems to me what is called for is an exquisite balance between two conflicting needs: the most skeptical scrutiny of all hypotheses that are served up to us and at the same time a great openness to new ideas … If you are only skeptical, then no new ideas make it through to you … On the other hand, if you are open to the point of gullibility and have not an ounce of skeptical sense in you, then you cannot distinguish the useful ideas from the worthless ones."

And that is why I don't place a lot of value on religiously funded editorials. Just because it's on the radio, doesn't make it true. Sometimes you have to follow the money and see who's talking.

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