“At the core of all well-founded belief, lies belief that is unfounded.”
– Ludwig Wittgenstein
A certain holy book states that if you seek the truth, it will set you free. Why would a holy book that is “the truth”, according to some, tell you to go seek the truth? Perhaps, here’s why.
Our belief systems are what we believe to be the truth. That is, you believe you know, even when you don’t. Of course, belief systems change every generation or so. Therefore, what we believe is the truth is constantly changing. Even science has but one certainty – and that is that scientific theory is always changing. That’s why they refer to it as theory, as opposed to the term “scientific truth.”
Most of us are married to our beliefs, unable to see other perspectives. In fact, most people won’t even consider that they might be wrong. So, whether it’s politics, religion or simply where to get the best Polish sausage in Chicago, everyone has an opinion and they’re absolutely convinced that they are right. Just go ask Ashley Judd, for example. Stuart Chase put it this way, “For those who believe, no proof is necessary. For those who don’t believe, no proof is possible.”
Strangely enough, though, our beliefs are based on what other people have told us and their beliefs are based on what other people have told them…and so on. We are always living someone else’s beliefs. For most, we believe in what we believe because we want to fit in (in our culture, that is). Our culture dictates our beliefs.
However, to truly believe means that you must decide for yourselves. Try this little experiment. Start with a clean sheet of paper. This represents your mind, with no beliefs whatsoever. Then write down what you believe in, but only those things that you can honestly tell yourself that you absolutely know are true. When you’re finished, how many beliefs have you written down? It might surprise you to know that many of those beliefs are not true.
In the end, it’s not so much about what you believe in, but how it is that you have decided to believe. You have the power to choose. Life is always about choices. To truly choose, though, requires that you overcome fear – the fear of being rejected by others. That’s why so many people compromise and choose other people’s belief systems. They consider it “safer.” After all, why be an individual when you can be safe in the hive mind?
However, choices have consequences – frequently ones that are life-changing. If you live your life based on other peoples’ beliefs you will never become the person that you were meant to be. Rather, you’ll simply be a clone reiterating what you’ve been brainwashed to believe. As Kevin Michel said, “Every conscious thought you have, every moment you spend on an idea, is a commitment to be stuck with that idea and with aspects of that level of thinking, for the rest of your life.”
There are a few reasons why humans are unable to ascertain the truth. First of all, their physical senses are woefully limited; their most important sense, intuition, is rarely even used. Further, the virtual reality matrix that we exist in is designed in such a way as to obscure the truth. We have become a dumbed-down species which is often incapable of processing information, let alone determining if it is accurate or not. Accordingly, you need to consider if anything you have been taught to believe is really true.
“A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.” – David Bohm
This is kind of an old topic, but it is one that seems to never die. That is, does God exist? The debate between deists and atheists typically is centered around the Christian god with atheists rejecting God simply because they reject Christianity. To be fair, though, there are some 4,200 religions in the world and the Christian god, therefore, is just one of 4,200 gods .
So, I pose these questions: In order to be intellectually honest, do atheists need to reject all 4,200 gods before declaring themselves to be atheists? And exactly what makes Christians feel that their god, amongst all of the 4,200 gods, is the one and only?
While my interest in this debate wanes by the day, I feel that it’s still worth a mention. To begin with, religious beliefs are claims rather than the truth. Holy books, however, may be considered to be the truth by a believer, even if it’s based solely on their faith. On the other hand atheism, is a religion too. Michael Ruse, an evolutionist himself, admitted that, “Evolution is promoted by its practitioners as more than mere science. Evolution is promulgated as an ideology, a secular religion-a full-fledged alternative to Christianity, with meaning and morality…Evolution is a religion. This was true of evolution in the beginning, and it is true of evolution still today.”
Scientists of all stripes have weighed in on this debate. Here’s a few thoughts from some of the great minds of science:
“I believe in Spinoza’s God who reveals himself in the orderly harmony of what exists, not in a God who concerns himself with the fates and actions of human beings.”
– Albert Einstein
Note: According to Wikipedia, Spinoza believed that “…everything is a derivative of God, interconnected with all of existence.” Further, the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy states that Spinoza’s God is an “infinite intellect.”
“The universe does not exist ‘out there,’ independent of us. We are inescapably involved in bringing about that which appears to be happening. We are not only observers. We are participators.”
– John Wheeler, physicist
“The cosmos is within us. We are made of star-stuff. We are a way for the universe to know itself.”
– Carl Sagan, astronomer
Note: Of course, Sagan was admitting that there is super- intelligence in the cosmos, an intelligence which can think, extrapolate… and “know itself”.
“Our brains mathematically construct objective reality by interpreting frequencies that are ultimately projections from another dimension, a deeper order of existence that is beyond both space and time….”
– Michael Talbot, The Holographic Universe
“Life is the most mysterious of all the wonders of creation because atoms have been assembled in such a way so that they can ponder their own existence.”
– Martin Rees, astrophysicist
“The secret of DNA’s success is that it carries information like that of a computer program, but far more advanced. Since experience shows that intelligence is the only presently acting cause of information, we can infer that intelligence is the best explanation for the information in DNA.”
– Jonathan Wells, molecular biologist
“To me, it is clear that we exist in a plan which is governed by rules that were created, shaped by a universal intelligence and not by chance.”
– Michio Kaku, physicist
“Astronomy leads us to a unique event, a universe that was created out of nothing and delicately balanced to provide exactly the conditions required to support life. In the absence of an absurdly improbable accident, the observations of modern science seem to suggest an underlying, one might say, supernatural plan.”
– Arno Penzias, physicist
“It is easy to understand why many scientists like Sir Fred Hoyle changed their minds in the past thirty years. They now agree that the universe, as we know it, cannot reasonably be explained as a cosmic accident.”
– Frederic B. Burnham, historian of science
“Beyond all finite experiences and secondary causes, all laws, ideas and principles, there is an Intelligence or Mind, the first principle of all principles, the Supreme Idea on which all other ideas are grounded.”
“When it comes to the origin of life on this earth, there are only two possibilities: creation or spontaneous generation (evolution). There is no third way. Spontaneous generation was disproved 100 years ago, but that leads us only to one other conclusion: that of supernatural creation. We cannot accept that on philosophical grounds (personal reasons); therefore, we choose to believe the impossible: that life arose spontaneously by chance.”
– George Wald
“Super-intelligence is the only good explanation for the origin of life and the complexity of nature.”
– Antony Flew
These gentlemen hardly referred to God at all in explaining the origins of life. Therefore, I would suggest that the vast majority of concepts/perspectives about God (both pro and con) are incomplete, at best. Since the word God is generally associated with religion, I believe that it would be preferable to use the term “creator” instead.
Of course if there is a creator, he doesn’t have to be the god of any religion, now does he? So, if any of you are hung up over the illogic of religion, especially Christianity, it doesn’t necessarily mean that there is no God. It may simply mean that you have been looking for him in all the wrong places and calling him by the wrong name.
– Joseph Campbell
“Fear of serious injury alone cannot justify oppression of free speech and assembly… It is the function of speech to free men from the bondage of irrational fears.” – Louis D. Brandeis
The University of California at Berkeley was once the scene of perhaps the greatest example of free speech in America. I should know; I was there for a time. Some of the free speech was pretty radical by anyone’s standards. However, all viewpoints were allowed. That’s the beauty of free speech. No one truly has free speech unless everyone has it.
The recent violence on the campus of UC Berkeley shows that some students there disagree with the concept of free speech. An example of their thinking was on display recently in the university’s student newspaper, The Daily Californian, a sample of which is as follows:
- “To people with platforms who decide when a protest should and should not be violent: You speak from a place of immense privilege. As I recently wrote in a tirade against this brand of idiocy, asking people to maintain peaceful dialogue with those who legitimately do not think their lives matter is a violent act.”
Comment: We are a Republic, a nation of laws. Therefore, no individual gets to decide what is a “violent act.”
- “…with President Trump threatening to cut UC Berkeley’s federal funding if it does not allow all opinions to be shared… the president is threatening the freedom of speech of these protesters.
Comment: No one violated the protestors free speech. The problem is the violence, not the rhetoric. In reality, the opposite is true; that is, the protestors caused other peoples’ free speech to be violated. You may hate what someone has to say, but you have to allow him to have his say. Otherwise free speech is no longer free.
- “…the hate speech that fails to respect the humanity of undocumented people.”
Comment: The lack of respect is actually on the part of the violent protestors. Certainly, if any of these were my kids, I’d wonder who brainwashed them into hating America. As Dana Carvey once said, “I think free speech is probably the coolest thing we have in this country, and again, you can label it hate speech and dismiss it, and then you’re allowed to censor it.”
- “When mass call-ins, faculty and student objections, letter-writing campaigns, numerous op-eds (including mine), union grievances and peaceful demonstrations don’t work, when the nonviolent tactics have been exhausted — what is left?…These were not acts of violence. They were acts of self defense.”
Comment: Of course, this form of “self-defense” violates the civil rights of others. Self-defense? No further comment is necessary.
- “I urge you to consider whether damaging the windows of places like banks and the Amazon student store constitutes ‘violence.’”
Comment: Suggest that we ask the people who had property damaged whether or not it was violence.
Yes, we are a nation of laws. When we cease to respect those laws, we spiral down into anarchy. At some point, we actually cease becoming a nation. Instead, we are hostage to mob rule. Perhaps, that’s what was intended all along by the violent protests.
“Without Freedom of Thought, there can be no such Thing as Wisdom; and no such Thing as publick Liberty, without Freedom of Speech; which is the Right of every Man, as far as by it, he does not hurt or control the Right of another. And this is the only Check it ought to suffer, and the only bounds it ought to know. This sacred Privilege is to essential to free Governments… Whoever would overthrow the Liberty of a Nation, must begin by subduing the Fteeness [sic] of Speech….”
– Cato’s letters
As I mentioned in my last post, there was no hue and cry when President Obama imposed immigration restrictions in 2011. However, the hypocrisy goes far beyond that, as witnessed by the following quotes:
“All Americans…are rightly disturbed by the large numbers of illegal aliens entering our country. The jobs they hold might otherwise be held by citizens or legal immigrants. The public service they use impose burdens on our taxpayers. That’s why our administration has moved aggressively to secure our borders….” – President Bill Clinton
“Even as we are a nation of immigrants, we are a nation of laws. Undocumented workers broke our immigration laws and I believe that they must be held accountable, especially those that might be dangerous. When I took office, I committed to fixing this broken immigration system and I began by doing what I could to secure our borders. But today, our immigration system is broken and everybody knows it. There are actions I have the legal authority to take as President…The actions I’m taking are not only lawful, they are the kinds of actions taken by every single Republican President and every single Democratic President for the past half-century….” – President Barack Obama
Given what President Clinton and President Obama said and did, why is there even a debate today?
Immigration dominates the headlines these days and, even though I try to avoid the news, it’s constantly in my face. So, if I must, here’s my take.
One of the key issues in the immigration issue centers around “open borders.” Every nation decides for itself on this question. Look at China and Saudi Arabia, for example. Their immigration policies are unbelievably restrictive, especially when compared to America. For a nation to be considered sovereign, it must, therefore have the right to determine who can and who can’t migrate to their country. The Foreign Minister of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed al Nahyan, has come out in support of Trump’s executive order because, as he says, the United States has the right to make a “sovereign decision” regarding its immigration policy.
Aside: Even Saint Thomas Aquinas understood that principle when he expounded on the subject in his seminal work, the Summa Theologica.
The truth is that in the context of recent world-wide immigration, diversity doesn’t work. It doesn’t work, in part, because immigrants have to want to assimilate. However, Muslims, in particular, are adamant about not assimilating. For example, a vast majority of Muslims in the UK have said that they consider themselves to be Muslims first and UK citizens second. Sharia Law, which is incompatible with Western culture, then becomes a major roadblock to assimilation. As Lee Kuan Yew, the former Prime Minister of Singapore, said about diversity, “In multiracial societies, you don’t vote in accordance with your economic interests and social interests, you vote in accordance with race and religion.” This should serve as a warning to all counties, but especially America.
Aside: To all the women protesting against the current immigration restrictions, perhaps you should go talk to the women of Europe, particularly in Sweden, who have seen rapes committed by Muslim immigrants skyrocket through the roof. You should ask those women if immigration is a good thing or not.
On a more practical note, America does not have an overabundance of resources. In fact, it’s basically bankrupt with the national deficit sitting at over three trillion dollars annually. Moreover, there are not enough jobs to go around and as a result there are some 41 million people on food stamps. Therefore, for every new immigrant there is one more person added to the unemployment rolls. So, for all of you who are promoting immigration, I suggest that you volunteer to give up your job for a new immigrant. I suspect, however, that no one will take me up on that offer, now will they?
What is really hard to fathom for some is that the immigration protestors never objected when Obama imposed similar immigration restrictions back in 2011. Maybe, it’s because most of the protestors today are left-wing ideologues and opposing Trump’s immigration restrictions is in reality a political ploy to marginalize and demonize political opponents. Ain’t politics wonderful? That’s why I try to avoid the news whenever possible; so much of it is Fake News anyway.
The complete history of the Caucasian race has yet to be written. If some people have their way, it never will be.
Recent scientific studies on genetics and language indicate that the Caucasian race can be traced back to the vicinity of Anatolia (modern-day Turkey) some 6,000 -10,000 years ago. So too, other studies show that blue-eyed people, as well as blond hair I might add, also arose in the same general area and timeframe. To name a few, ancient Caucasians include Yazidis, Aryans and certain Egyptian pharaohs.
Of course, no one has ever ventured back beyond the 6,000-year threshold; back to the true origins of the Caucasian race. There are only a few options for where they came from, as follows:
- Caucasians came from the stars (in other words, they are extraterrestrials).
- Caucasians were genetically created by extraterrestrials. Nobel Prize winner Francis Crick could certainly agree with that, as is outlined in the Directed Panspermia Theory.
- Caucasians came from a much older civilization (say, Atlantis).
The bottom line is this. Caucasians didn’t just materialize out of thin air. It’s what I call a “poof” moment. Supposedly, we all came out of Africa with black hair, black skin, dark eyes and a distinctively African skull. Then, poof, overnight in evolutionary terms, we got very large numbers of people with light-colored skin, hair and eyes and a Nordic skull to boot.
Perhaps, the reason that there is very little discussion of the above alternatives is that it they are considered politically incorrect. Maybe, we are not supposed to know man’s true origins. Maybe, Jean-Jacques Rousseau was right, then, when he said that, “The falsification of history has done more to mislead humans than any single thing known to mankind.” Maybe, the world would be a better place, though, if we actually knew the truth. Maybe the Yazidis already know.
“History is a pack of lies we play on the dead.”
A recent study by research and analysis gurus, the Economist Intelligence Unit, says that America is now a flawed democracy due to a steep decline in Americans’ trust in their government, elected representatives and political parties.
Slight correction. America has never been a democracy, it’s a republic. It’s like calling a filet mignon a hamburger. If you don’t know the difference, you should look it up. Are you listening there at the Economist?
Once upon a time, almost half-way around the world the biblical kingdom of Israel existed; that is, until it was wiped off the map by the Roman Empire. Today, the country of Israel has been resurrected but there is something very strange about it – almost unrecognizable in fact. You see, it’s now very different, geographically speaking. So, why and how did that happen?
In biblical times, Israel existed as two kingdoms; one was called Judea and the other Samaria. Interestingly enough, those two kingdoms make up, more or less, what today is referred to as the West Bank. Yes, the West Bank rather than Israel. How does one explain how the creation of a 20th century Jewish homeland never had them return to what was truly home for them. It’s sort of like someone who grew up in New York City going back home as an adult to live in New Jersey. How does that make any sense?
Well, actually there is one way that this all makes sense. The reality is that the Jewish homeland was never about geography, but rather about politics. Today, more than half of modern-day Israel is made up of the Negev Desert, which could never be considered to be a homeland for anyone, with the exception maybe of the Bedouins who have lived there for thousands of years. Further, important biblical cities/sites like Bethlehem, East Jerusalem, Masada, Jericho and Qumran are, today, all in the West Bank.
So, the true Jewish homeland is really what is now referred to as the West Bank and not some arbitrary lines drawn on a map by some politicians who carved up what was then British Palestine. The West Bank was also then part of Palestine and later became part of Jordan. After the Six-Day War in 1967, Jordan (having lost the war) ceded the West Bank to Israel, and so it remains today. Therefore, why would anyone expect that Israel would give up their true homeland? Why? Would you?
Palestine has never existed as a country, so it’s hard to see why it should exist today. This is especially true since the majority of British Palestine was spun off into an Arab nation that today is called Jordan and which is populated predominately by Palestinians. That’s why King Hussein, the former king of Jordan, said that Jordan is Palestine and Palestine is Jordan.
Of course, Jordan could just become a Palestinian state (as opposed to be being a Saudi/Hashemite kingdom). However, that would be too easy. Why promote a peaceful solution when you can promote one that creates chaos instead.
So, Palestine is back in the news again. One really has to ask the question why. That is, why do the Palestinians deserve a homeland?
In recent days, the UN Security Council passed a resolution whereby Israeli settlements in the West Bank were deemed to be illegal (i.e. occupied territories). I say “deemed to be” because the UN Security Council has no legal power to tell any sovereign nation what to do. If we’re going to play the “occupied territories” card, it would only be fair to first demand that China give Tibet its freedom back or that America return the country to the Native Americans. By definition, then, the West Bank, Tibet and America are all occupied territories. The West Bank arguably falls into this category because it was won as the result of a war… and the treaty that ended that war said that the West Bank now belonged to Israel. So, that should be the end of it, right?
Aside: The fake news is that an actual, sovereign nation of Palestine has never existed; not even in biblical times. Some scholars say that a Palestinian identity did not even become a reality until after 1948, with some saying as late as 1967. Ethnically, Palestinians are actually no different from other Arabs living throughout the Middle East.
However to understand the politics of the present, one has to know a little something about the politics of the past. At the conclusion of World War I, the former Ottoman Empire was carved up and a part of it was given the name Palestine. Arabs, Christians and Jews lived in Palestine at that time and they were all considered to be Palestinians. Palestine was governed by the British under what was called the British Mandate of Palestine. Part of Palestine would later be spun off and become the Arab state of Transjordan. In 1948, Transjordan (now called Jordan) and other Arab states invaded the remainder of Palestine (then called Mandatory Palestine). The trigger for the war was Israel’s declaration of independence. The resulting treaty that ended the war gave the West Bank to Transjordan with the remainder of Mandatory Palestine recognized as the Jewish state of Israel.
Those borders remained in place until the Six – Day War of 1967. That war was initiated by various Arab nations, including Jordan, who still did not recognize the creation of the state of Israel. At the conclusion of that war, Jordan ceded the West Bank to Israel. It’s interesting to note that The United Nations did not call for a homeland for the Palestinian Arabs at that time.
However today, some fifty years later, politicians have reinvented the issue of a separate Palestinian state. Never mind that the biggest minority population in the Middle East, the Kurds, still do not have a homeland of their own; never mind that an Arab nation (Jordan) was previously carved out of Palestine and could be used to provide for a Palestinian state; and never mind that the West Bank is, more or less, the biblical Jewish lands of Judea and Sumeria, the loss of which was the reason for a Jewish homeland in the first place.
Finally, and most importantly, never mind that the Palestinian Arabs still do not recognize Israel as a sovereign state as evidenced by their rejection of John Kerry’s recent two-state solution. In those circumstances, why would anyone want to create a Palestinian state which would be next door to a nation (Israel) that they, the Palestinians, do not recognize, a nation that they would like to wipe off the map? After all, that’s how we got the Arab-Israeli War of 1948 and the Six-Day War of 1967. So, you have to ask yourself if the real reason the politicians want to create a Palestinian homeland is to create a lasting peace or to start a war. Last I checked, no one makes money off of peace, only off of wars. Fake peace anyone?
“The truth is that Jordan is Palestine and Palestine is Jordan.” – King Hussein of Jordan
The topic of so-called Fake News is prominent in the headlines these days. However, it’s just one person’s opinion as to whether news is fake or not. After all, one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter, right?
So, what if anything should one make of the furor over Fake News? Most of the debate seems to center around the mainstream media vs. certain alt-right internet sites. However, differing opinions are in reality not necessarily differing viewpoints. By that, I mean that some opinions are in reality based on ideology, ideologies that often do not require proof. These ideologies are the result of agendas of control which are not interested in the truth, but rather only in the promulgation of the ideology itself.
Aside: Perhaps, the American people have already decided this issue since the mainstream media’s approval rating has fallen to around 6%. More to the point, when you lose credibility your ideology suffers (i.e. you lose elections).
Beyond the obvious debate concerning the media, there is a less obvious example with regards to ideology shaping the world that we live in. I’m talking about one of my favorite whipping boys – science. As philosopher Paul Feyerabend put it, “Thus science is much closer to myth than scientific philosophy is prepared to admit… it is inherently superior only for those who have already decided in favour of a certain ideology, or who have accepted it without having ever examined its advantages and its limits.” Yes, even in science, any process inherently begins with a person’s ideology.
A couple of well-known scientists who admitted to what Feyerabend said about ideology are Edwin Hubble and Richard Lewontin, as follows:
“Such a condition would imply that we occupy a unique position in the universe…The hypothesis cannot be disproved but it is unwelcome… Therefore we disregard this possibility…. the unwelcome supposition of a favoured location must be avoided at all costs…. Such a favoured position is intolerable…Therefore, in order to restore homogeneity, and to escape the horror of a unique position…must be compensated by… spatial curvature. There seems to be no other escape.” – Edwin Hubble, astronomer
“Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are against common sense is the key to an understanding of the real struggle between science and the supernatural. We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a priori commitment, a commitment to materialism. It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.” – Richard Lewontin, geneticist
So, is it theory or is it fact? Is it real or is it fake? How is a person to know? Maybe, we should just play another one of those videos from physicist Michio Kaku. He wouldn’t lie to us…now would he?
One needs to keep in mind that things are rarely what they seem. In reality, it’s the people crying Fake News who are the ones putting out the Fake News. It’s a strategy taken right out of the playbook of Saul Alinsky. Of course, that’s just one man’s opinion, isn’t it? No doubt some would even claim it’s Fake News.
“Everything is backwards, everything is upside down. Doctors destroy health, lawyers destroy justice, psychiatrists destroy minds, scientists destroy truth, major media destroys information, religions destroy spirituality and governments destroy freedom.” – Michael Ellner