Morality: Imaginary Knowledge

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I am an atheist.  However, I do read religious texts in order to study their perspective on historical events.  It can be very insightful.

Today, I am going to talk about a subject that has given me a keen interest: Morality.

When you look up the word “religion” you come to discover that it was a term coined just prior to the Renaissance.  It’s literal meaning is “reflecting on all I know”.  If you study Western religious texts you discover that Adam and Eve were soley gatherers.  Adam’s work in the garden was classification.  He was giving names to everything in Eden.  He was practicing religion.  He was accumulating real knowledge.

1 Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array.

2 By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested [a] from all his work. 3 And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.

4 This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created.
When the LORD God made the earth and the heavens- 5 and no shrub of the field had yet appeared on the earth [b] and no plant of the field had yet sprung up, for the LORD God had not sent rain on the earth [c] and there was no man to work the ground, 6 but streams [d] came up from the earth and watered the whole surface of the ground- 7 the LORD God formed the man [e]
from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.

8 Now the LORD God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. 9 And the LORD God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

10 A river watering the garden flowed from Eden; from there it was separated into four headwaters. 11 The name of the first is the Pishon; it winds through the entire land of Havilah, where there is gold. 12 (The gold of that land is good; aromatic resin [f] and onyx are also there.) 13 The name of the second river is the Gihon; it winds through the entire land of Cush. [g] 14 The name of the third river is the Tigris; it runs along the east side of Asshur. And the fourth river is the Euphrates.

15 The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. 16 And the LORD God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.”

18 The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”

19 Now the LORD God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name. 20 So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field.
But for Adam [h] no suitable helper was found. 21 So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs [i] and closed up the place with flesh. 22 Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib [j] he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.

23 The man said,
“This is now bone of my bones
and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called ‘woman, [k]
for she was taken out of man.”

24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.

25 The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.

However, there is another word “morality” which has its root in another event: The Fall of Man.

1 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”

2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’ “

4 “You will not surely die,” the serpent said to the woman. 5 “For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

6 When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.

8 Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden. 9 But the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?”

10 He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”

11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

12 The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”

13 Then the LORD God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”
The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”

14 So the LORD God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this,
“Cursed are you above all the livestock
and all the wild animals!
You will crawl on your belly
and you will eat dust
all the days of your life.

15 And I will put enmity
between you and the woman,
and between your offspring [a] and hers;
he will crush [b] your head,
and you will strike his heel.”

16 To the woman he said,
“I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing;
with pain you will give birth to children.
Your desire will be for your husband,
and he will rule over you.”

17 To Adam he said, “Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat of it,’
“Cursed is the ground because of you;
through painful toil you will eat of it
all the days of your life.

18 It will produce thorns and thistles for you,
and you will eat the plants of the field.

19 By the sweat of your brow
you will eat your food
until you return to the ground,
since from it you were taken;
for dust you are
and to dust you will return.”

20 Adam [c] named his wife Eve, [d] because she would become the mother of all the living.

21 The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. 22 And the LORD God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” 23 So the LORD God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. 24 After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side [e] of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.

The Fall of Man is an interesting event because it describes how morality entered human culture.  Morality is not knowledge in the way Adam’s classification system was knowledge.

As an atheist I look at God as imaginary and God’s knowledge as imaginary.  Morality is imaginary knowledge.  First, Eve came up with some imaginary knowledge and she began moralizing.  Eve was no longer a woman, she was a cunt.  And she shared her imaginary knowledge with Adam and he began moralizing.  Adam was no longer a man, he was a dick.  And their moralizing led them to be ashamed of their sexuality; to hate their evolutionary precursor, reptiles; to increase pain; to enslave themselves and plants; and keep them from immortality.

Sexual morality is imaginary, talking reptiles are imaginary, pain is imaginary, slavery is imaginary, immortality is imaginary.

However, cunts and dicks think they are real.

Morality, not religion is the source of your downfall and all your suffering.

Atheism: Stalin’s Prayer

GEORGIA/

Thanks for coming.

Look at all our megalithic stuff.

If you don’t want to be here you can starve.

Remember how many Ukrainians we exterminated.

Remember how many Cambodians we exterminated.

Visit friendly Myanmar.

Visit friendly North Korea.

We are intellectuals.

Religion: Reciprocitism: A New Command I Give You

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Reciprocitism.

Reciprocity is the foundation of every religion.

Reciprocity states: “Do to others as you would have others do to you.”

Reciprocity does not work if you are a masochist.

If you hate yourself, you will hate others in the same way.

And so reciprocity in its current form is a curse to all of humanity.

Rights are permissions to love yourself.

Responsibilities are requirements to love others as you would have others love you.

So a new reciprocitic command must be coined:

“Love yourself and love others as you would have others love you.”

Zen: Don’t Think Good or Evil

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If you think good and evil,

You become a person of good and evil.

I recently chanced upon a book sale and was able to purchase a book of Zen koans and a book of Haiku poetry for a fair price.  I had read about Zen in the past, but I had not read actual works by Zen masters.

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I have completed reading Zen Inspirations: Essential Meditations and Text, by Dr. Miram Levering for the first time.  It includes the complete text of The Gateless Gate a thirteenth century collection of koans, commentary and poetry by Ekai, known as Mumon.  The book also includes The Ten Ox-herding Pictures accompanied by ten poems by the twelfth century Chinese monk K’uo-an Shih-yuan It is definitely not something you read only once.  I enjoyed the Zen masters’ admonitions to read the koan and permit yourself to solve it quickly and without hesitation to discover the enlightenment that comes from honesty.  As I read the koans, I let myself be honest about my inner response and the wisdom of the Zen masters became increasingly amusing.  I think I came to be enlightened many times by their frank honesty about the human condition, the Buddha and the Tao.  I think one admonition by Zen master Mumon, that if you encounter someone filled with the Tao, strike him in the face with all the strength you have, sums up what I have learned.

The Zen koans and Taoism I find agree with the philosophy of science, the philosophy of Karl Popper, skepticism, the evolutionary biology of Charles Darwin, the physics of Werner Heisenberg and the mathematics of Kurt Goedel seamlessly.  Uncertainty remains the only certainty.

There is origin without origin, direction without direction, destination without destination.  Any sense of order is localized and transient.  That is the Tao Te and not the Tao Te, and that is what the adherents to Zen struggle with daily.

I don’t claim understanding or overstanding of this paradox.

The Fifth Horseman: Comedy

In the world of atheists it has been said that there are Four Horsemen, namely Science (Richard Dawkins), Progress (Dan Dennett), Reason (Sam Harris) and Equality (Christopher Hitchens). Now, let me tell you about the Fifth Horseman: Comedy.

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Pat Condell is a respected and disrespectful atheist comedian who rants the way every secularist should. He has no respect for any religion Western or Eastern. He believes that religion should be legislated out of public life and restricted to personal life.  In addition, he has an exceptional distaste for religions that threaten violence when they are told they are religions of violence but that’s another video which you can view by clicking on the open book icon below the video embed. Warning: Pat’s videos continue ad infinitum. You can stop them by clicking on the video and stopping with the controls.

Visit PatCondell.net

Atheism: More Vision, Less Derision

I am currently reading The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins and I am finding it a very fatiguing book to read. The reason for this is Richard cannot seem to make an eloquent rejection of religious superstition without ranting about the stupidity of everyone and everything involved. It’s cover to cover contempt. I would rather be inspired by an atheist vision than witnessing intellectual derision. If it is wrong, prove it is wrong without adding insult to injury.

The problem is atheists, myself included, are hard pressed to come up with an atheist vision. However, Milan Kundera, a seasoned victim of communist oppression, came out with what I believe to be the best vision I can think of. That is the rejection of supernatural consciousness and the rationale of Descartes and the acceptance of the value of all natural consciousness. The real joy of life for every living thing is to be conscious of life at whatever level that may be. And every living thing fights with everything it has to preserve its consciousness.

The frauds of religion are two:

  1. to claim that there is a supernatural consciousness in the universe. For that there is no evidence.
  2. to claim that our consciousness somehow exists before or after life. For that there is no evidence.

Love your consciousness, love other’s consciousness as your own.

Satire: Good and Yahoo

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I have completed my reading of the fourth part of Gulliver’s Travels, “Journey to the Houyhnhnms”, and with it completed Jonathan Swift’s book. In this part Gulliver encounters a species of horses calling themselves “Houyhnhnms”, who are guided in their lives by reason and virtue, as well as a species of humans called “Yahoos”, who are guided by illogic and vice. As Gulliver comes to acquaint himself with these two species he realizes that he himself is a Yahoo, as are all humans, and finds himself not wanting to leave the company of the Houyhnhnms. However, reason dictates that he return to the Yahoos of England and the Houyhnhnms exhort him to do so.

This part is not only a satire of humanity, it is a satire of nature. No one in Jonathan’s time or our own with any knowledge of nature, of which humanity is part, would for a moment declare nature a slave to reason and virtue or free of illogic and vice.

Stepping back for the broader view, Jonathan’s book is interesting in that it criticizes all aspects of society, however he never directly criticizes religion. He instead talks of reason and virtue; of friendship and benevolence; never of god and god’s will; never of faith and obedience. In fact, the only reference to European religion is architecture and the inquisition. And perhaps that is all that needs mention.

Of course reading the work that coins the word Yahoo and directly associates it with the word “evil” makes for an interesting contemporary interpretation of our search engine landscape. If we used the term Yahoo in the same way as used by Jonathan Swift, “Don’t be Yahoo”, would be grammatically correct.

related post: Cogitators, Academics, Necromancers and Immortals