Friday, March 9, 2007

The truth about the world is rather unsettling, but I’m learning to cope. I couldn’t have chosen a better major for study at this time in my life than Political Science. History and theories about leadership have showed me a continuous cycle of manipulation and exploitation. In relation to my faith this has been extremely challenging (examples in the church are infinite). I have known people afraid to study anything but business, multimedia, or communications for fear that any sciences, natural or otherwise, might contradict their six-thousand-year history of the world. The academic study of religion is also frightening to someone accustomed to a fundamentalist Christian relationship with science and society, not to mention the ‘heretic’ study of philosophy. I heard someone say that the Creationist’s view of geology and biology is analogous to Flat Earth Geography. I agree with this to some extent, but I also know that the world as God created it will always be flat in a metaphoric sense as mystery and wonder remain a constant. Opposite the Neo-Con Fundamentalists (I use this term lightly) are the scientists who argue either that we should abandon technology and live as Leavers (described in Daniel Quinn’s Ishmael) or that man can completely manipulate, predict and control the planet, saving it from destruction caused by pollution and human strain and make it new again. In so many words, we are either to live as well adjusted animals or as cyborgs. There is a medium here, and I am still searching for it. In almost every respect I have embraced, or at least considered, the benefits of all the extremes mentioned above.

1 comment:

Jonathan Pfeiffer said...

If it's true that there are suggestions "that man [sic] can completely manipulate, predict and control the planet", I'd like to know more about such ideas, and the parties espousing them. Such a notion seems, indeed, more extreme than what I've seen or heard coming from serious thinkers. Renewal via intervention, I think, does not necessarily imply tight prediction and control. The barriers to a resilient world may be somewhat difficult to overcome, but (I hope) not *that* difficult.

(As for achieving resilience--or something like it--by "abandoning technology", well, I can't comment because I don't even know what that means. I'm still open to learning.)

Also, while you cannot now (as I presume from your comment) articulate the *content* of a golden mean between the extremes, can you speculate about its possible shape? What would a happy medium look like? What requirements should it satisfy? What purpose would it serve? (Democracy? Aristocracy? Transcendental virtues? Happiness?)