In the modern, secular world, the average citizen has lost the appreciation of just how fundamental religious identity is to our basic existence. The secularist – remote to the religious experience all about them each and every day – sees religion as a membership in an organization; a simple choice that can be flipped with an opportunistic lifestyle, a change in schedule, or a little enlightenment. The results of such a naiveté is just beginning to roost like gargoyles on the growing discord we call diversity.
But religion is not an organization with a human leadership that shops for designer bargains at a factory-outlet store. Religion isn’t just tucked neatly within the prefrontal cortex of the brain; ready to be affected by neuroplasticity brought about by human events. Religion has demonstrated that it is much more pervasive and prevailing in all human cultures; signaling that it is embodied within every cell within every human body. It is not likely to go away with a “shoo”, or retreat to its dog house with a “bad doggie”.
Continue reading The Commonality of Faith
Recently, a good friend of mine read my essay on Pluralism & Relativism, and asked the question if I could comment on Secular Humanism. As I had started a series of moral arguments, it seemed practical that the next one may as well be on such an “ism”.
I also have to note, with great emphasis, that this essay quickly became a satire and a screed, and for that, I apologize. It just became so ridiculous examining the humanist point of view and then dealing with it in a mature and educated fashion. So I took the gutter. And while the gutter is smelly, dirty, and offensive, it still leads us to where we need to go; to the understanding of the very dangerous nature of Humanism.
In taking a hard look at Humanism, it became efficient to deal with the primary doctrines of this movement of man, and for accuracy’s sake I went to the source: The American Humanist Association (AHA). Within their website I found the three, basic humanist manifestos; generated in 1933, 1973, and 2003. Though there are other affirmations of their common goals to be found, and well worth the read, I am going to concentrate my discourse on the three manifestos as noted in order to contain the content of this essay. Yes, the devil is in the details – in this case the applications of Humanism into our American society – and I do believe it is the Devil who writes any doctrine that attempts to usurp the authority of God.
Continue reading The Moral Argument – Humanism
God’s Biological Love – The Second-Person Relationship
“People fail to get along because they fear each other; they fear each other because they don’t know each other; they don’t know each other because they have not communicated with each other.” Martin Luther King Jr.
The second obstacle to the secularist goal, is the natural superiority of the second-person relationship over that of the first-person and third-person relationships. An individual is a finite creature in that he or she can only interact with others on an intimate and transformative level to the degree in which they can physically place themselves in contact with others. In the practice of second-person relationships down through the last several millennia, its evolution assumed a pace that permitted a relatively smooth assimilation into the society. For there to be true cohesion between the members of a society, there must be the constant opportunity to directly permit the gentle persuasion of the second-person relationship to overcome the individual inclination to self-centeredness. We call this liberty. However, since the late Middle Ages and on into the Enlightenment, where man changed the final cause for his advancement as a society through science – that of the final cause or will of God – to its efficient cause – man himself – our ability to communicate in the second-person relationship has diminished greatly; despite the technological wonders that have afforded us the opportunity to be closer than ever to one another. Continue reading The Rights of Evil – Part 8.
God’s Biological Society – The Family
The first component, and an obstacle to the secularist goal, is the authority of the genetic family. There is no continuation of the species of man without procreation. As such, it is the physical center of humanity and has been such since man climbed out of the mud of the bog. With such an understanding, all cultures in the past have naturally delegated authority to the family; first to the father and mother, second to the community, third to the state, and so on. It had always been a fundamental practice that generated opportunity and stability for all, and despite its frequent inequities due to the abuse of authority by self-centered individuals and groups – a condition that exits in all authorities across all philosophies – it is a proven model. It works because that is God’s creative plan and it is His genetic formula for created man.
Secular man sees another model; one not based upon genetics, but rather upon desires. The first is stable and evolves at a pace that society bears easily and without notice. The second is continually disruptive by nature for it gives preference to immediate and temporal desires, and redistributes resources, which had been acquired through the stability of the family structure, to those who have not had to work for those resources. The secularist, in pursuit of providing resources for the impulse of feelings and desires, has to separate work from reward. Individuals and groups that had spent their lives working for what they thought was theirs, are left to watch those things of value taken away from them and given to another individual or group so that a new desire may flourish. Institutions that struggled for generations in order to reach the higher echelons of quality provisions for specific purposes have found their successful programs sacked and redefined by those who merely desired what that institution earned and offered, and saw no reason why they should have to meet the very requirements that made the institution desirable to them to begin with. The secularist creed is, “Take what you choose not to earn or accomplish”. Continue reading The Rights of Evil – Part 7.
God’s Nature – What Man Resists
God’s nature is love in the full, self-sacrificial form. To experience Him is to feel at first an impulse to the kindness one should show to others, and given good soil to grow in, it becomes a devotion to the demotion of one’s personal desires for the good of all, knowing that in turn one receives the highest quality of humanity; happiness, contentment, and peace. It is a virtue of humanity that cannot be replicated through man’s own endeavors.
Anyone who would contend that their engagement and successful navigation through life is due to their singular force is selfishly ignoring the backs of others upon which they climbed or the receiving nourishment of one order or another from others. No matter how hard one may try, the inevitable truth of God’s work in one’s life is unmeasurable. While the atheist can deny He exists, the atheist cannot deny the assistance of others in his or her life. There, the potential of God always resides and the atheist cannot shake it off. There, the self-sacrificial nature of God and His call for mankind to demonstrate a similar nature resides to lift man away from his inclinations to himself to the aspirations of man in God’s form; a society for the benefit of all. Continue reading The Rights of Evil – Part 6.