10 May 2005

Religion and science

Finally, someone else points out the otherwise obvious complaint that those who deride evolution as a mere theory seem to forget that gravity falls into the same bucket. Daily Kos recently made a similar but more nuanced argument that [t]he boundary lines between God and science, however, are always exactly laid at the limiting lines of the practitioner's own education. Fancy that. No creationist is complaining about gravity or even most of biology, yet the assertions of all of these disciplines evolved from the same processes as evolution.

In Joseph Campbell's lecture The Way of Art (originally recommended by The Centrifuge), he defines all of religion as metaphor:

All religions are mythological. You see what that means. They don't realize that Yahweh is a metaphor. The terrible thing about Yahweh is, he didn't realize it either! He thought he was the connotation, don't you see? So, when a metaphor is read with reference not to the connotation but to the denotation, it's a lie. Hence atheism.

Meanwhile, the ones who are worshipers of the metaphor don't know what they are doing, so they are missing the message. Do you get what I'm saying? This is really important stuff. I don't know whether its in the N. Y. Times yet but its important.

If you think your metaphor is the connotation then you think the other guys metaphor is a lie. You see what I mean? And here all these people all over the planet talking about the same connotation, sticking to their metaphors and we're having trouble. I think I've got the answer to the contemporary problem.

This is important stuff. The spiritual is important not because there's a big bearded guy that will help Homer get Moe's bar back but because it's an external metaphor for our understanding of humankind's purpose in this world.

When the journals Science and Nature were accused of editorial abuse by excluding papers from scientists that doubt climate change, I felt that their charges should be addressed by those journals to avoid the assumption of conspiracy. I don't think I feel the same way concerning the silence/absence of scientists at the recent hillbilly creationist debate. Could flat-earthers command such attention?

[ posted by sstrader on 10 May 2005 at 1:22:37 PM in Science & Technology ]