The Soul Question
I recently raised the Soul Question on OMF. A google search for 'soul' on this site yields 44 hits, several of which are just quotes from other sources. It will need to add an entry for the 'soul' in the topical index. Here is my latest post on this topic:
There can be no exo-politics, other than on the presupposition of a Universal soul: one soul for every sapient creature.
Souls are created and protected by the Universal Creator.
The existence of such a soul generally favors the UTH over the ETH, for reasons that may easily be explained.
The UTH >>>> BPWH >>>> Eschatological Hypothesis.
I will be attempting to collect my thoughts on the soul here and at OMF.
As I have attempted to explain @OM, the Soul is a critical bridge issue between exo-politics and exo-theology. But I have only taken this fact onboard since transitioning from my interrogation by the biblical literalists at OM, over to the exopolitical discussion section there.
Yes, I am remiss for not having made a bigger deal out of the political implications of the soul early on, both here and there.
My best excuse is that this site was mainly targeted at a general, and presumably secular, audience. It was only after tangling with the literalists at OM (I did not expect to find there even the handful that showed up) that I have given more serious consideration to acknowledging a more conventionally religious or spiritual audience.
Belief in a soul just happens to be the highest common denominator of virtually every spiritual tradition.
I'll be starting out by perusing the wiki entry on the soul.
But first, speaking from my previous studies, the theist and pantheist versions of the soul are quite different. The pantheists, as one might suppose, are rather more profligate with their dispensing of souls: to every biological creature. To my mind, this move greatly diminishes its spiritual significance, something that has been noted by more than a few pantheist philosophers. I recollect that this profligacy is seen as supporting the view that souls do not have any real ontological basis, a fate shared by virtually everything else that we can think of.
I am not entirely unsympathetic with the pantheist view of the 'relativity' of souls. According to the (relationalist) BPWH, souls are functional, along with everything else we can think of. Souls serve a crucial function within the BPW. There is no (coherent or cognizable) existence outside of the exigencies of the BPW, of which Creator and creatures are an integral part.
The soul, according to many religious and philosophical traditions, is the self-aware essence unique to a particular living being. In these traditions the soul is thought to incorporate the inner essence of each living being, and to be the true basis for sapience, rather than the brain or any other material or natural part of the biological organism. Souls are usually considered to be immortal and to exist prior to incarnation.
The concept of the soul has strong links with notions of an afterlife, but opinions may vary wildly, even within a given religion, as to what may happen to the soul after the death of the body. Some religions don't even believe in the soul. Many within these religions and philosophies see the soul as immaterial, while others consider it to possibly have a material component, and some have even tried to establish the weight of the soul.
On this site I have followed the modern philosophical fashion of attending to the notion of the soul mainly under the rubric of the mind-body problem, which also includes the problem of personal identity. Most philosophers of the mind, which includes an ample portion secularists and agnostics, remain skeptical of the very few of their colleagues who claim that a biological or physical basis of the mind will inevitably be found. It is fair to say that the majority of academic philosophers are not at all pre-disposed to dismissing the general idea of a living soul, if one does not include the issue of an afterlife.
The reality of the mind-body problem is a bedrock issue for the BPWH.
Buddha taught that there is no permanent self in the conventional sense (anatta), what most people call self is a delusion or wrong view, not seeing things as they really are, (principally; lacking experiential insight of the five aggregates of clinging). [...]
Some say that the self endures after death, some say it perishes. In the Theravada Buddhist view, both are wrong and their error is most grievous. Theravadins believe that if one says the self is perishable, the fruit they strive for will perish too, and at some time there will be no hereafter. Good and evil would be indifferent. This salvation from selfishness is without merit.
One might consider this doctrine of anatta as not entirely unlike the doctrine of Apokatastasis, in which the individual souls are reabsorbed into the mind of the Creator, as the functions of our individual neurons are absorbed into our own minds.
The above wiki article references the Taoist belief:
There is a constant 9.6 billion souls or primordial beings according to two books on Taoist beliefs, which would reside in the realms of heaven, earth or hell depending on the state of purity.
Presumably this would include any sub-worlds. This is certainly well within the range of 10^10 souls postulated by the BPWH.
There are no traditions which specifically reference an infinite number of souls.
That even the pantheist traditions fail to support, either implicitly or explicitly, an infinity of souls, is a strong corroboration for the BPWH. Where the pantheists diverge from theism, is in the postulation of recurring creations. The idea of recurrence, however, is optimally captured by the BPWH in the notion of the Singular Ouroboric/Bootstrap circuit.
This was just forwarded by Gordon to a large list......
> On Feb 4, 2008, at 5:42 PM, [CK] wrote:
>> Today was a nightmare trying to recover from several serious
>> problems. I
>> just arrived home with a big case of additional work. [.....]
CK almost never airs such work related matters to us outsiders. Do we have a need to know?
The pantheist intellectuals recognize that the existence of a specifically sapient soul strongly favors Theism. They have only two possible responses:
- The soul is a temporary illusion (Buddhism).
- The soul is universal to all life (Hinduism).
Neither of these responses stands to reason, but that is mysticism for you.
Then along comes Exopolitics, Inc. They pride themselves on their scientific secularity, with the occasional nod to pantheism. They model themselves on the UN.
Can they avoid the Soul Question? Can they avoid exo-theology?
I suggest not.
[Gary alerts me to the following paper (Paula Zizzi, 2000), which I am now perusing:Abstract: In a previous paper (gr-qc/9907063) we described the early inflationary universe in terms of quantum information. In this paper, we analyze those results in more detail, and we stress the fact that, during inflation, the universe can be described as a superposed state of quantum registers. The self-reduction of the superposed quantum state is consistent with the Penrose's Objective Reduction (OR) model. The quantum gravity threshold is reached at the end of inflation, and corresponds to a superposed state of 10^9 quantum registers. This is also the number of superposed tubulins-qubits in our brain, which undergo the Penrose-Hameroff's Orchestrated Objective Reduction, (Orch OR), leading to a conscious event. Then, an analogy naturally arises between the very early quantum computing universe, and our mind.
Not bad, huh? Unfortunately this paper has not been cited since 2001, except here ("The universe is structured like a language", '06) wherein it is cited by Jack's friend, Tony Smith. How Gary dug this up, I don't know.]
Things seem to be progressing Ok at OM, where I have started a new topic: The Soul Question.
On the VLAA thread, there is the perennial question of sin: is it a stain or a shadow?
Is sin a crime of commission or omission? I suggest that it is an essential feature of Creation, i.e. separation form the Creator, i.e. ignorance. This is the standard gnostic, idealist view of sin. Wiki...........Felix Culpa......
Felix culpa is a Latin phrase that literally translated means a "blessed fault" or "fortunate fall". As a religious term it refers to Adam and Eve's fall and the loss of the Garden of Eden, known theologically as the source of original sin. The phrase is sung annually in the Exsultet of the Easter Vigil: "O felix culpa quae talem et tantum meruit habere redemptorem," "O happy fault that merited such and so great a Redeemer." The medieval theologian Thomas Aquinas cited this line when he explained how the principle that "God allows evils to happen in order to bring a greater good therefrom" underlies the causal relationship between original sin and the Divine Redeemer's Incarnation.
Here is a question for the experts:
Did Adam and Eve have free-will before or after the Apple incident? Can one have free-will without a knowledge of good and evil? At most, there was disobedience. But without the knowledge of their relation to their Creator, how can there even be said to be disobedience?
I've lately been focused on the soul question over at OMF. It's not going too badly. It shows some promise. Sufficient to supplant disclosure? That would be a stretch, but less of one than any that are visible, and less that how it appeared just a few weeks ago.
That discussion does help me to focus on the most salient points.........
- The belief in souls is the most prevalent of all metaphysical beliefs
- It is strongly supported by the vast body of philosophical thought engendered by the mind-body problem
- Parapsychological phenomena, often associated with ufo incidents, provide much additional support for the existence of the psyche.
- Personal souls imply a personal Creator, pace the pantheists
- An infinity of souls is not compatible with theism
- A finitude of souls provides the best single argument for the BPWH and its eschatology, contra materialism
The ETH, in contrast to the UTH, is the consensus view within ufology. Those ufologists who also maintain traditional beliefs, will be likely to subscribe also to the UTH, but only as a sidelight. They accept the notion that the preponderance of the seemingly physical manifestations or visitations are ET related. In the absence of evidence to the contrary, these persons generally suppose that all sapient ETs possess souls like ours. To assume otherwise would smack of anthropocentrism, a view that flies in the face of the rest of the spirit of ufology.
Thus do the theistically inclined ufologists suppose that Creation contains an indefinitely large number of ensouled beings. This view was first espoused in modernity by Giordano Bruno in 1584, following the ideas of Democritus.
In modern times, it is only the orthodox Christians who have maintained a Christocentric theology.
I am presently reading Msgr. Balducci's 1995 statement on extraterrestrials. The essay is introduced with the following note:
“The Lord certainly did not limit His glory to this small Earth. On other planets other beings exist who did not sin and fall as we did."
- St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina (1887-1968), canonized June 16, 2002.
Balducci argues for the ETH relative to the UTH:
Let me state very clearly: We can exclude that angels use spaceships. As purely spiritual beings, angels can project themselves at any place they want to reach and, in rare instances, when they want to reveal themselves, take a visible form without any difficulty. The same is certain for the defunct. When the Holy Virgin wants to reveal Herself to Mankind (as it happened in rare, well-documented cases) she chose forms in which She can express Her love and care as a mother and Her motherly compassion with us. We don´t even have to waste a thought on the devil and his demons, who still kept their angelic nature, being fallen angels and therefore also purely spiritual beings, since they are limited in their activity by God and therefore not able to bring all their hatred to us.
Jake @OM makes this same argument. Continuing...........
2. The existence of other inhabited planets is highly probable. The distance between the angels, purely spiritual beings, and us, beings of spirit and matter, body and soul is too large. Our soul cannot act without the body, its unalterable means, which through its passions and sinfulness influences the soul so deeply that man becomes unstable and rather tends toward the bad than towards the good.
Therefore it is highly probable that in between, between us and the angels, another life form exists, namely beings which still have a physical body but one which is more perfect than ours and influences the soul less in its intelligent acts and intentions. This assumption is confirmed by the ancient principle defined by Lucrezio Caro as "Natura non favit saltus" (The Nature makes no jumps, see "De rerum natura"), still quoted by theologians. [...]
"It seems to be the purpose of the Universe that the celestial bodies are inhabited by beings who reflect the glory of God in the beauty of their bodies and worlds as man does, in a limited way, in his world." But they are no angels, Father Grasso added, since angels are purely spiritual beings and can perceive matter only indirectly, just as we can only indirectly perceive the world of the spirit.
And then this:
3.The inhabitability of other planets is not only possible and probable, but also desirable. In the future, even in a far-distant-one, their possible inhabitants, if they are indeed superior to us, can help and support us in our spiritual development. In this way, which we cannot prove, they might have helped and protected us already in the past.
If indeed intelligent beings exist on other planets, their existence might very well be correlated with the Salvation through Christ. It is certain that Christ is the center and head of the creation or universe, as St. Paul already stated (Col. 1, 16-17). Therefore there exists no world which is not related to Him.
For the record, I quote from Colossians 1:
16For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:
17And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.
18And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.
19For it pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell;
20And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.
I frankly find Msgr. Balducci's statements to be an incoherent admixture of science and religion. What stands out is the manner in which he glosses over the problem of evolution. He conflates the notions of spiritual and biological evolution. Eschatology is absent entirely.
The Msgr., with his theological ineptitude, has managed to make a great muddle of the ETH.
Was not the fall of humankind directly related to our (lowly?) biological status? How did the ETs acquire perfected bodies/souls while we did not? How much of our imperfection was due to a spiritual fall, or to a faulty evolution?
Will we, for the rest of eternity, be under the tutelage of our superior ET brothers? Do the ETs celebrate Communion? Why did God send Jesus? Could He not have just permitted the ETs to teach us? Why are they so bashful?
And what do we make of the badly behaved ETs?
I have to wonder if everyone in the Vatican is quite as confused and confusing on these issues as the Msgr.? Was the confusion a deliberate ploy to play different sides in the same game? Was he left entirely to his own meager devices, twisting in the theological currents.
Let us focus now on the problem of infinity, and particularly on the possible infinity of souls.
Why should this be a problem for God? The problem becomes critical when we consider it in the context of Soteriology.
The problem could be dealt with, in part, by supposing that the universe is either just one big World, or many separate little worlds. But our universe with its alleged interstellar travelers, is neither one extreme or the other, and so we confronted by a very complex logistics
I remain amazed by the shoddiness of the theology presented by Msgr. Balducci, and excerpted above.
I know that the Vatican retains some very competent theologians. That they would allow such poor quality on the part of one of their colleagues to see the light of day, beggars my imagination. As I mentioned previously, I attended a talk by the Msgr. at the X-Con. a few years ago. It was translated on the spot by Paola. I found it to be mind-numbingly boring and pedantic.
His colleagues (and particularly Benedict (ne. Ratzinger), then Keeper of the Faith) would never have permitted his media exposure in DC, without prior scrutiny. One reason it was so boring was that the Msgr. spoke only from a written text.
Yes, folks, I sense a very calculated plant. But calculated to what end?
The only other Christian sects to take UFOs seriously are the literalists in the US, and they uniformly see a demonic presence. And they frequently couch this phenomenon in Apocalyptic terms.
My first estimate is that the Vatican is very concerned that its flock of 1.1 billion souls is already being caught-up in the spreading apocalyptic frenzy, world-wide, and so is using the soporific 'genius' of the Msgr. to sprinkle its dampening holy water on this most contagious of enthusiasms.
Meanwhile the visitors are keeping the pot stirred down in Texas, a few miles from the Crawford ranch.
Yes, the shoddiness of the Msgr., explains much to me about the politics and metaphysics behind Exopolitics, Inc., and, yes, even behind the Ron & Gordon show. It is all coming from the same source. The plan is to keep the lid on the Apocalypse until the last possible moment.
There is only one exception within this global plan, and that is whatever remains of the R&D show.
According to the Msgr., the visitors should be bringing Theological coal to our Newcastle, along with some high-tech. Their first order of business should be to settle the theological disputes between Christianity and the other religions and with science. That certainly has not happened, except provisionally under the auspices of R&D. But that intervention in itself would be tantamount to a final Revelation, which could not occur in the absence of a Second Coming. And this Second Coming would be witnessed by the entire universe.
Then what, Msgr. Balducci??? What do you suggest for an encore? We get our perfected bodies like the ETs, and all become angels?
It sounds like a universal Resurrection to me.
The logical implication is that the last, we lowly Earthlings, shall be the first on the Resurrection Glory-train....Mark 10:31:
But many who are first will be last, and the last first.
Even the Vatican, with all its intellectual resources, is finding it difficult to obfuscate the Eschatological implications of the inevitable Disclosure. They totally fail to address the problem of the Cover-up!
Meanwhile, the Erath (sp!) fall-out keeps drifting right toward OM.
Infinity of Souls?
This abstract question points to the crux of the BPWH.
What, if any, are the quantitative considerations that might go into Creation?
Modern cosmology has vastly expanded the accepted size of the World. Even the most literal minded of the religionists do not question the enormous scale of the universe being posited by science. At the most, only a small portion of those literalists still deny the enormous age of it, as also designated by science.
Another irony is that even the immaterialist pantheists have generally subscribed to the scientific cosmology, taking it to be a confirmation of their pre-scientific speculations about the great length of the cosmic cycles, some of which happen to be in the same ballpark to where science is now.
These historical ironies, I maintain, are not just accidental. They constitute a significant part of the the setup, or teleological hidden-hand at work to ensure the dramatic novelty of the cosmological paradigm 'inversion' that is about to take place.
In all of this speculation, it is only the BPWH that points out that theism cannot be comfortable with an indefinite number of ensouled creatures.
Theism, as contrasted with Deism, entails an immanent Creator. If Creation is infinite, and God is immanent in Creation, then there arises the problem that Creation may simply absorb God as in pantheism. This threat is particularly acute where the ensouled creatures are taken to be created in the image of God.
Furthermore, I hardly think that we can be commanded to love that which is beyond all reckoning or imagining. We are only asked to love God as we might love a parent or our soul mates. We cannot be asked to love an infinitude of soul mates or of anything else
It is often said that God and heaven are eternal, in contrast to Creation. I disagree. Rather, God creates time, which itself is not eternal. By the same token, God is not unlimited. Rather, God defines all limits. God is all-limiting. And he is self-limiting when appropriate, e.g. in the case of Incarnation.
The Greeks spoke of Apeiron or the Unlimited. That is not God. It is Chaos, and we are not commanded to love Chaos.
God is all-powerful and all-knowing. That does not imply that God is infinite in those regards, but rather is circumscribing, defining or creating of all else.
Neither would we wish that God be blindsided by some monster emerging from the depths of Chaos....every child's nightmare. But does this require that God be infinite in order to protect us from monsters? No, it is God's overpowering love that protects us.
[to be continued....]
God relies on a VLAA, very large active array, of us intelligences to spot any emerging threats. The Earth is the primary node in that Array. What happens on Earth, stays on Earth, by-and-large, until the Rapture. We are God's Dream Catcher, among many other functions.
God is not infinite, but is omnipotent, with the cooperation of his creatures, ensured by a mutual love and trust.
The point is that God is naturally self-limiting, and often so, so as not to overwhelm his Creation, and to maintain a mutuality with it.
As an integral part of God, we share in those self-limitations. One of the main benefits is a quality control, which become the basic premise of the BPWH.
The counter argument, such as it is, is a cosmic right-to-life argument. If one creature or one creation is good, then more must be better. An infinity of both would be expected. But according to Cantor, there is an infinite ladder of infinities, each being at least an infinite exponential greater than the one below. Very quickly in that process, all semblance of a personal God is lost. And what is more important to any creature than our personal connection with our Creator?
So what is the best possible size of Creation? Well, by-and-large, we are looking at it!
Sure, there can be many outlying, hyperdimensional worlds, but they must be functionally, and historically related to us, especially with regard to an end-time synchrony. Creation must be an organic unity, and we are its heart, if not also its head.
That's it. That's the BPW, and this is the BPWH. Would we have it any other way? Would God?
Be our Guest. If you can think of a bigger and better Creation, with one Family and one History, then let's hear it. Be God for a Day! That is the notion behind the chutzpa that is the BPWH.
The BPWH is the best solution to the problem of evil, i.e. the best theodicy. If something is ever going to happen, it has got to happen here. Every challenge to life and love that is worth facing, will be faced right here.
Will the Star Trekkers be disappointed? Will the ufologists be disappointed? Like I say, the Earth is God's Dream Catcher, and so especially is every Star Trek convention.
Thanks for all the Fish!
So why all the Stars and Galaxies?
Did I ever say that the Hubble couldn't paint a mean picture! JHU/HST outsources the picture painting to the North Pole, I suppose.
What other picture would you prefer? God mending shoes in a forest?
And think of all our Blue Sky Dreams.
I'll tell you this, my little friends, three centuries of being Lost in Space has done wonders for steeling the human Soul.
Yes, once we were lost.............
Through the Hubble glass, darkly. Then the dawn.
Why would God lie to us?
First and foremost, God is the God of History. History is no lie! The Blue Sky is but a backdrop to History. God is the Great Dramatist. Would you have preferred another stage on which to strut our stuff? Get Real. Ever hear of the Globe Theater? You're living on it. Get back, Willie!
There is the prevalent view that God's first priority in Creation was astronomy, and biology was almost an afterthought.
Yes, the idea now is that God mainly wanted to get the astronomy right, and then, hopefully, would find a place to squeeze in some biology.
People are so impressed by the grandeur of astronomy, especially with the Hubble photos, that they find it hard to believe that God was not also big on astronomy. It seems much too impressive to be a mere backdrop to history. Small faith do they have in the teleologically inspired artistry of their Lord!
The Anthropic Principle might have done more to restore faith all-around, but has, so far, had little impact on the overwhelmingly anti-Anthropic bias in science. Unfortunately this is true even, or especially, amongst the lay scientists who make up the bulk of ufology, most of whom have paid it no mind, whatsoever.
Ufologists shun the UTH just because they are focused on winning the acceptance of the phenomenon within science, as a physical phenomenon.
The minority of ufologists who are avowed Christians are more inclined to focus on the apocalyptic and demonic aspect of it. At best the aliens give lip service to a 'cosmic christ' entity. The Christians are wont to take a gnostic view of the matter. But the immaterialism of the BPWH remains a great conceptual barrier to them, as well.
My way forward is clear. Focus on the demonic aspect of the ufo phenomenon, and how it argues and augurs against the ETH.
The ETH, by itself, argues for a Strong Anthropic Principle (SAP), i.e. Design! But we can hardly conceive of a Designer lacking a spiritual entourage: thus the UTs. But given any UTs at all, the ETH is then placed in violation of Occam's Principle of Theoretical Parsimony (PTP1). This brings us right to the threshold of the BPWH.
Then, by invoking the Principle of Theistic Personalism (PTP2), there can only be a finite number of ensouled creatures.
SAP + PTP1 + PTP2 = BPWH!!
The above informal formula, is easily the most succinct formulation of the BPWH, to-date.
This is no small advance for coherence.
What is now the weakest link?
The PTP2 component of the BPWH is the least known of the three arguments. I can say this with some authority, because it has not been previously stated, to my knowledge. Neither has the PTP1, in this context, but it is better known and more direct in its logic.
I have argued that the PTP2 was part of the logic behind the immolation of Giordano, but it was not explicitly invoked then, or since.
Personalism is implicit in theism as opposed to deism. But only in the formulation of the Trinity is it explicitly evoked in the monotheistic prophetic tradition.
Theism is just the statement of God's immanence in Creation. That immanence is, naturally, focused on the ensouled creatures, which are necessarily persons, by definition. Immanence then implies intimacy of a very personal sort. This can only be a mutuality between persons, each fully exemplifying the other. Love is the operative word in this context.
However, and this is primary role of the PTP2 within the BPWH, intimate, personal mutuality, i.e. love, CANNOT occur between entities, any one of which can viewed as REDUNDANT.
One might attempt to argue that God, in all his omnipotence, might be capable of such redundant love. I abjure.
Redundant love violates the principal of mutuality, on the face of it. My expendability, in the larger scheme of things, militates against my feeling of mutuality wrt the Creator. Even if God were capable of such love, it could hardly overcome the actual violation of the bond of mutual dependence.
The strict monotheist, i.e. deist, denies all dependence of Creator on Creation. But that view, my friends, is oxymoronic, on the face of it!
So it is QED, once again.
But that need not, and will not be the end of this argument.
With Judaism, we have the God of history, and so, necessarily, his Chosen People.
All of that (tribal) history might conceivably have been repeated on another planet. But not the Holocaust.
With the Holocaust is an intimacy of horror. It is the event of history that, if it were ever to be excused as occurring under the aegis of God, could be excused only as a cosmic singularity/necessity. Such an Excuse can only be invoked Once within the purview of God. Even the invocation of an additional Creator would only serve to obviate any singular theodicy. Thus does this incarnation of evil rise to the level of the X-event, itself, in sealing God's unique bond with humanity in the consummation of history. Yes, there is here even the intimation of a cosmic complementarity, and so it becomes a central pillar of the BPWH, with all that terrible but necessary irony.
I would hardly expect the above statement to make sense to the novice wrt this cosmology. It can make sense only in the end.....the end of learning and the end of history. It is the necessarily terrible counterweight to the otherwise 'lightness of being'. By comparison, the Inquisition was an auto-de-fe. The Holocaust transcended even that last full measure of devotion, when seen in all the clarity of eschatological hindsight.
The redundancy of evil is just the banality of evil. Rest assured, there is nothing banal about the God of History.
It is the latter-day deists amongst the ufologists, who invoke the scepter of many-worlds, just to alleviate their own apprehension concerning the mutual dependency of Creator and Creation. Their apprehension stems mainly from their personal inability to comprehend the fullness of that Saving Grace, right here on Earth. Their own feeling of unworthiness is projected unto their fellow man, as an act of desperation. Jesus did not suffice for atonement. They need to enlist most of their fellows in bearing the burden of their own feeling of unworthiness. And, seemingly, we are brought back to the Holocaust.
Their invocation of another Holocaust, i.e. a literal Armageddon, is just the measure of their lack of faith and understanding.
Their invocation of multiple creations is, by the same token, just the measure of their disdain for this one. Thus do they blaspheme against the work and power of the Creator.
Yea, and thus do they blaspheme against the Spirit and Power of Truth.
Having thus shored up the contribution of the PTP2 to the BPWH, we turn next to the SAP, the Strong Anthropic Principle, in the continuation of this 'principled' defense and explication of the BPWH.
In the interest of professional decorum, the original C(osmological)AP has devolved into just the W(eak)AP. Lately there has arisen a conceptual problem with the many-worlds invoking WAP. There turn out to be too many worlds, as if that were possible for a physicalist cosmologist. This problem, ironically arises out of the greatest success in the history of physics, i.e. the Theory of Everything or Grand Unified Theory, the latest incarnation of which is Matrix String Theory or just M-theory.
Here are the numbers: There are no less than 10^500 distinct versions of M-theory. And when you add in the cosmological boundary conditions necessary for the bigness of the Big Bang, the number of logical alternatives to this universe skyrockets, as if that were possible, relative to 10^500!
These imponderable improbabilities open up a horrendous loophole in the WAP. The loophole is so big, that the WAP now suffers from the 'invasion' of the Boltzmann Brains! Yes, my friends, it is now infinitely more probable that you are a brain floating in the void, dreaming of the universe, than an actual denizen of a real universe that has turned out to be as astronomically improbable as our is calculated to be!
Shades of God's virtual reality invoked by the BPWH?? You bet your bippy!
Thus, sports fans, does the WAP evolve right back to where it started with the SAP cum CAP.
The upholders of the WAP were wont to invoke the PTP1, Occam's 'Razor', in their own defense. It was considered the lesser of theoretical evils to invoke a plethora of unobservable universes, in lieu of invoking a new theoretical entity, i.e. God. One measly God vs. an infinite ensemble of unobservable universes? That is a bit of a stretch! Methinks that professional correctness is much the more likely culprit.
Never, in the history of thought, has the notion of the Reductio ad Absurdum been more worthily exemplified, than right here, vis a vis the WAP in favor of the SAP.
Yes, the WAP invokes the PTP1, and is then hoisted on its own logical petard.
WAP >>> R.I.P.
This was easier that even I had imagined. We have come full circle, and have barely gotten our feet wet. There remains plenty of dry ammunition. The principal one of which is the mind-brain problem, speaking of the Boltzmann Brains!
If I were now to wield that stick, I would be liable to be condemned for cruelty(?) to dead horses.
The most important lesson to be learned, each time the circle of the BPWH is completed, is that its greatest strength lies in the holistic synergy of its mutually supporting arguments. This is what finally recommends synthesis over the analysis of scientific reductionism, which ends logically without a leg to stand on, not even a quantum atom to stand on.
And now, finally, in the technology of the Internet, it has sown the seeds of its own comeuppance. So proceeds the Revelation/disclosure event that brings history to its much deserved and logical point of rest, nay, resurrection.
Mind & Brain
Although the mind-body problem has been much discussed in these pages, the discussion has been used mainly as an introduction to immaterialism. Now I take a somewhat different tack by explicitly alluding to the question of the soul, this being more of an introduction to theism than to immaterialism. This new tack simply adds to the importance that the BPWH ascribes to the problem of the mind.
Of all the promissory notes that modern secularism freely extends to scientific materialism, the one that is nearest to default is the largest note of all: that is the promise of artificial intelligence. Whatever happened to the soul in the machine? It is looking more ghostly with each passing month.
The only development in AI which keeps its promise alive, is that of the quantum computer. There is something sufficiently ghostly about the quantum which prevents rigor mortis from claiming the entire field.
On the other hand, the once promising idea of the Quantum Mind, led mainly by Roger Penrose, with much initial fanfare, is now a boat without a rudder.
It was the notion of the quantum mind that was the point of departure for my metaphysical quest back in the late '70s. It was with much hesitation that I eventually discarded my original 'quantum dualism' in favor of a full-blown immaterialism.
The quantum computer, on the other hand, still maintains a sense of promise. The timeline for quantum computing is impressive in an exponential fashion. You will search in vain, however, for ongoing research in the possible links between quantum computing and the quantum mind.
One function being served by these quantum gambits is to put conventional AI further out of contention when it comes to solving the mind-body problem. But, on the other hand, there is nothing that a quantum computer can do, in principle, that cannot be done by a classical computer. Computers that transcend the limits of Turing computability are dubbed 'hyper-computers'. There is no one suggesting that such a computer would ever be feasible, but that does not prevent some folks from talking about them as mathematical abstractions.
The above considerations render the notion of a physical basis of the mind, or of a truly artificial intelliegence, more implausible that it has has been since the day in June of 1863 when it was first conceived.
This negative result for AI is prima facie evidence for the non-physical basis of the mind. This is only a first step in an argument for the soul.
The next issue is the existence of an animal soul. Metempsychosis is an article of faith among pantheists: our souls can be shared by animals. The most recent National Geographic (3/08) has a compilation of extraordinary 'mental' feats on the part of a wide variety of animals. But these same studies also point to limits in this arena, rather more than they do to a transcendence of barriers.
The only effective probe to any mind is through language, and these animal language studies can only be reproduced in the laboratory. This provides scant hope that any conceivable evolutionary mechanism might have hidden a human-like mind in the brains of any of these animals.
The feats of genius evidenced by human artists and mathematicians, for example, defy any possibility of measurement. With no feasible computational or quantitative models of even the most mundane examples of human ability, how far can we push such comparisons?
Besides rational and aesthetic judgments, the unique feature of the human mind is its eidetic memory, especially amongst those of us gifted with photographic memories. Even if it could be quantified, and I'm not aware of anyone having even taken a stab at this, there is a retrieval problem that has barely been broached.
The one human trait that we take so much for granted is 'common sense'. Yet this remains the most elusive of of all traits that anyone has even attempted to simulate.
The point that I have made in support of Theistic Personalism is that the individual soul, on this planet at least, is only possessed by humans.
Beyond all of these problems remains the problem of consciousness itself. This is the granddaddy of all mind-brain problems.
The only ones who think this problem is soluble are those who deny its existence. Consciousness is simply an artifact of language, they say. As if all toddlers were zombies.
The problem of the mind remains the most challenging in all of science.
Should the 'promissory note' for the mind be withdrawn from the bank account of science? No, not unless there is an overwhelming extenuating circumstance. The circumstance envisioned by the BPWH is the end of history. If there ever was an excuse for wrapping up our human affairs and concerns, this would be it.
The answer to this question is likely to be fundamental to any final Revelation or disclosure.
It is a question, however, that can be answered only in the context of the other fundamental issues of human existence.
A final point that I have neglected to touch upon is parapsychology. Parapsychology figures prominently among all paranormal phenomena, which, in their turn, are a central feature of ufo phenomena. Parapsychology is widely seen as direct evidence for a non-physical basis of the mind. It would likely constitute a significant component of Disclosure.
There is little point in speculating about a soul, however, if there is no conceivable source. It is the SAP that provides independent evidence of a Creative Intelligence of the sort that is taken as the canonical source of the soul. The mind-body problem reinforces the SAP, in that both point in the same general direction.
Reinforcing the SAP is the ufo phenomenon, regardless of the ET vs. UT aspect of it. Either resolution of that phenomenon greatly enhances the credibility of extra-scientific or 'uncorrelated' phenomena. The synergy factor then comes into play across a broad range of issues, all of them militating against the continued hegemony of scientific materialism. A widely perceived crisis therein will further feed the demand for a paradigmatic change in our modern worldview.
The Principle of Theistic Personalism (PTP2) is the logical culmination of all these new insights, and this then leads us most crucially to a reexamination of the metaphysics of eschatology. All these roads eventually lead us to our ultimate concern: whither do we go?
There is an argument with Jake on the VLAA thread. It concerns the number of souls.
Jake takes the reasonable position, given the apparent size of the Universe, that God has his heart set on producing as many souls as possible. I demur. This violates PTP2, especially from the perspective of the creatures, that must be taken into account.
One could suppose that God is capable of infinitely loving each of an infinity of creatures. Would Christians be any less able to love Jesus, just in case there might be too many converts?
The problem here is not the number, per se, but the fact of being numbered! Yes, Christians are confronted with a big cosmos, as measured by science. Science is all about numbers, so how can the rest of us not take them seriously?
But, surely, God is beyond numbering!
Yes, there will be a logistics problem, especially when it comes to eschatology.
And what about the salvation problem? There is the core assumption that Jesus was the only begotten Son of God. How many Saviors can Christians be led to accept?
The core assumption of the Prophetic tradition is Monotheism. There is also the key assumption that there is only one lifetime in one Creation. Does not the idea of multiple creations seem to violate the spirit of Monotheism? With multiple creations, are we not on a very slippery slope toward either Deism or Pantheism?
Here is just one consideration:
Suppose Jesus sends me to Hell, and unfairly in my mind. While roasting in hell, could I not be appealing to another Savior on another Planet who might be more lenient than Jesus, and who would intercede more liberally for me with God?
Or does Jesus have his own Private Hell, wherein other Saviors are not allowed to trespass, on pain of what? On pain of their being so condemned by our local, proprietary Savior?
More to the point, when I look around and see other creations that are not fallen, might I not wonder why, with my unlucky stars, did I have to be born on the planet where Adam and Eve succumbed to Temptation?
On the Orthodox view, we, Earthlings, are born into sin. We are born with two strikes against us. As a result, most of us will suffer eternal pain and damnation, unless God sheds his Grace on us as individuals, and allows certain lucky individuals to see the light of salvation.
Excuse me if I find something wrong with this picture!
But let's do the numbers again.............
Clearly the Christians have a numbers problem when it comes to Jesus. Jews have a numbers problem when it comes to Abraham.
Muslims? They don't seem to have a numbers problem........uh, oh!
What about the Koran? Has it been translated into Klingonese?
Uh, oh, again......The Koran is the Seal of all the Prophets and it is valid only in the original Arabic. There exist no canonical translations....Period!
Damn, those poor Klingons had better study up on their Arabic.
Yes, the prophetic tradition is a tough nut to crack.
One way or the other, all prophetic roads lead to Earth!
Or the prophetic path, in its entirety, is false!
Jake now tells us on the VLAA, that the Third Covenant is about to be delivered.
I am attempting to ascertain how it will be delivered.
We could still say that Mohammed was the Seal of the Prophets, in the tradition of Abraham and Moses..........
We could be told that Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and Gabriel were all ETs. It was merely a projection onto the Earth of a galactic tradition, preparing us to join the Federation.
But then why all the eschatology? Of what is that a projection? For what does that prepare us?
And we still have the Soul Question: Who is the keeper of our souls?
'Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep...........'
Who will decide the disposition of our souls, upon our bodily demise?
Will it be the Big Karma Machine in the Sky (BKMS), or will there be mercy?
Here is the choice.........
Would you rather have your Judge be a random flunky in the Angelic hierarchy, or would you prefer a computer grade?
The Pantheists have opted for the computer grade, and how can we fault them for that?
Only those of the Abrahamic/Mosaic tradition opt for the Angel. Why?
Because they believe that theirs is not some random tribal/planetary Angel. They believe that their Angel is the Big Kahuna in the Sky (BKS).
That's it, folks.......BKMS vs. BKS.
Either way, there is no appeal. If you get sent to Hell, you may rest assured that all legal recourse has been exhausted. The Supreme Court has heard your case and made its decision, so just get on with your afterlife.
It might seem that the pantheists have a definite advantage over the theists. They can always look forward to parole into the next life. It's a kind of reverse recidivism!
But, wait, we theists have the Ace in the hole. We have the Mercy card.
And this is not just any mercy card. This is the Creator's Mercy Card (CMC)!
By definition, their is no higher Trump, nor Trumpet.
Yes, folks, ours is the Cosmic God of Love (CGL). And we have a personal, historical connection to the CGL: Jesus, His only begotten Son (OBS), who gave up his life so that we could be baptized in the blood of the Lamb. We are now blood brothers with God.
Big F*ing Deal (BFD)!
Big Egos! Where do those Xians get off, thinking they are so special in the whole Cosmos?
Yes, folks, Jesus was and remains the Cosmic Scandal.....the Cosmic Paradox!
Ask anyone, besides the Born Again Christians.
And this little preamble brings us right back to the State of the Cosmos...the State of the UN.....and the State of the Religions.
So why did the visitors come here?
Well, they had to come somewhere.
Sure, the visitors have come everywhere, down almost every chimney.......BUT......
The good ol' USofA does seem to own the story. Just ask Hollywood. Just ask Rick Doty.
The spirit of God is everywhere.......BUT.......
God was born in Bethlehem, or so the Story goes.
What then are we to make of Bethlehem and Roswell? Could there possibly be a connection?
Roswell remains the Global scandal......the Global paradox. It remains the Core of the Core Story.
The hopes and fears of all the years are born in thee tonight.
Now this, ripped from yesterday's 'headlines': http://www.ufodigest.com/news/0208/un-confirmation.html :
Clay's and Shawn's confidential source (A) referred to an Admiral who was the ultimate authority for disclosure of the UN meeting to UFO/exopolitical community. Is this evidence that the Office of Naval In[telligence] is involved in the UFO disclosure initiative at the UN, or at least filtering information to be released to the UN and general public?
[...] The possible role of the Office of Naval Intelligence in filtering information that is being related through source A is something that cannot be discounted when considering what was specifically discussed at the UN meeting.
Well, we also know that Navy Commander Scott Jones is on the Advisory Board of Exopolitics, Inc.
Nonetheless, this is an interesting admission, coming from the alleged opposition to the Aviary.
We must recall Ron saying last year that all those attaining above a certain level at ONI can be linked directly to the Core Story, especially those who were involved in the Repositioning.
Yes, Rick may be a cop on the beat in Albuquerque, but he's got interesting connections.
Why Earth? Why Rick Doty?
Holy Blood, Holy Grail?
Pantheism vs. theism.
The buck has got to stop somewhere, or so we are told.
The pantheists want to keep passing the buck, forever.
Is it just a matter of taste? Or is it a matter of necessity?
It is a matter of Quality vs. Quantity.
All good things must end?
Yes, but they end in Eternity. Nothing then is lost.
Time is an integral part of Creation. We needed an Einstein to teach us that!
The pantheists never produced an Einstein. Why not?
Neither will they produce the Spirit of Truth.
The choice is between coherence and incoherence.
The choice is between Love.......and what? Is there anything else?
Love is personal, final and transcendent, or................else!
Is that a scandal? Is that a paradox?
Or is it the most common and universal of all sense?
It is only in that Spirit that I would ever claim to be the Spirit of Truth.
Gary Bekkum alerts me to the following article: http://arxiv.org/abs/0801.2962v1 .
Jack Ng reviews the evidence from physics that any creation is necessarily finite in its content, i.e. souls.
God could produce an infinity of finite creations, but only by partitioning Himself into non-communicating beings. If these beings, and/or their creations, were ever to attempt to communicate, they would immediately collapse into a black hole.
This is more that a mere physical limit. It is an intrinsic informational limit.
God might be able to transcend the limits, but He would then lose all contact with the creations.
One could say that theses limits were imposed by God. That is to say that the best possible God is self-limiting and self-concealing.
Thus does God focus His attention on the Quality rather than the Quantity of Creation.
This is just the thesis of the BPWH.
Given the Self-imposed limitations, we can focus on the optimum number of Souls that God will ever create.
It is fair to say that God has imposed limits upon Himself concerning the total possible number of souls ever to be created.
And this number is finite.
The next question is whether God would actually choose to create this maximum number of souls. That maximum number would be far greater than the 10^10 souls we observe on Earth.
I would suggest not. The main point is that God has chosen to not produce an infinity of life. We can conclude, that God is not a right-to-lifer. God is more concerned about the quality of life.
Given the universe, we cannot just assume that God would automatically fill it full of life. That is what a right-to-lifer would do, and God is not that.
But has not God filled the Earth full of life, to the point of overflowing?
If God was truly concerned about the quality of life, why would there be such a quantity of it on Earth.
Would it not have been better to spread us out on more planets?
In the case of the Earth, we have an apparent counter-example to what we have just proven: that God is not a right-to-lifer.
There is only one way to resolve this paradox.
Creation is focused on this One World that we call the Earth.
Only thus can we explain the legions of us in this one world.
Why just One?
Quality control demands the stratagem of putting all your eggs in one basket, and then watching that basket with utmost care.
For suppose there were two baskets. There would then be two competing histories. That would mean that there would be two competing Holocausts, but that would be Absurd!
Thus does God's own Physics prove the BPWH.
Wait, folks. Did I skip a step?
So why did God make all those other stars and planets, and leave them uninhabited?
Not at all. That is why God created the Quantum, to avoid waste!
The only real phenomenon is an observed phenomenon.
There are no observers out there, and so the heavens are real only to us. Unless God enjoys observing an infinity of dead planets.
Thus the heavens are an intentional backdrop for the Drama of our Salvation.
I have already put out the challenge for someone to propose a better backdrop.
It is just a staging area for Earth.
Any more questions?
And then there is this -- (c) Linda Howe --
January 25, 2008 - Could Our Universe Be A Virtual Reality
Processed By Other Intelligence? Click for report.
“If I’m in a virtual reality, the graphics are great, but the plot sucks.”
- Student of Prof. Brian Whitworth
But has he read the treatment?
For the record: [HFGW = high frequency gravity waves.] [When Ron and I discussed this topic some months ago, he stated the opinion that it was bunk. This was also to have been the topic of the ill-fated meeting with Robert Park in October, alluded to in the entry for 10/12/07, on this page.]
On Feb 22, 2008, at 5:54 PM, "Ronald [P.]"
> While I can neither confirm nor deny what may or may not have
> occurred during the alleged classified briefing, I can say that I
> personally think HFGW research is important and worth funding.
> Unfortunately the field has become a breeding ground for charlatans
> looking to scam governments, institutes, and private individuals.
> These scammers tend to target organizations and individuals not
> normally associated with funding of fundamental research. As
> several recent books have shown, the intelligence and defense
> communities are prime targets of such scammers. There are many
> ways to identify such scammers, but a sure fire approach is to look
> at their preferred sources of funding. Legitimate gravitational
> wave researchers in the United States submit proposals to the
> National Science Foundation. Scammers focus their energies on
> identifying vulnerable people within vulnerable organizations, and
> then they submit unsolicited and barely legible proposals to these
> targets. Unfortunately scammers also tend to commit other crimes
> including leaking classified information. Fortunately the
> intelligence and defense communities are well prepared to deal with
> these more traditional crimes.
> For those of you in the field, I do have some good news. Mark and
> I did meet with the National Science Foundation’s gravitational
> wave research program director. She noted that the National
> Science Foundation is looking for good proposals in this area to
> complement their research portfolio. I am sure Mark would be
> willing to help provide any of you with information on how to
> approach NSF with a proposal.
> From: Paul Murad
> Sent: Friday, February 22, 2008 7:30 PM
> To: Stephenson, Gary V; email@example.com
> Subject: RE: DoD / DARPA decision making
> I have sent Eric a private message regarding what he is suggesting
> below in this e-mail. However, since most of the people on this e-
> mail trail have been very helpful, I think you deserve an
> First off, what I do is essentially no one's business. I
> personally do not like rumors or inuendos to be expressed on e-
> mails. If someone has something to say to me, they can do so in
> private....Whether I answer or not is up to me...
> Second if I did not believe in HFGWs, why did I go to the trouble,
> and rest assured it was quite a bit of trouble on my part to have
> the first HFGW conference in 2003? Because it was an embryonic
> technology, I lost a lot of credibility over this topic. During the
> conference, I rewrote all of the papers to improve the technical
> quality and readibility as well as other activities. If yo udo not
> believe me, ask Bob. When Eric ran the second HFGW conference,
> government people were not invited. When this happens, you do not
> look very positive on such activities and, if anything, this
> strategy backfired and represents a slap in the face. Moreover, in
> reading some of the papers and bios, if Eric ran this conference
> responsibly, then he should have editing the papers as well as the
> 'poorly written' bios. Subsequent papers were poorly written.
> Third, if you were a funding source and saw the results of this
> conference, would you sponsor any such activities sponsoring poorly
> written technical papers? Eric left too many lose ends. I also
> want you to know that I was promised funds from an individual to
> run a second conference. This involved on-going negotiations for
> two years. It ended in failure and then Eric asked me for
> assistance on how to run the conference. I gave it to him and it
> appears that the same individual that I was in contact was
> sponsoring Eric's conference. It looked like Eric did an end-run on
> me and quite frankly, it does not make one motivated to go out of
> his way to help Eric.
> Fourth, if I was not supportive, then why have I permitted papers
> on HFGWs to be presented and published at STAIF year after year?
> Moreover, when people wanted to submit proposals, I was always
> there to help as well as identify potential funding sources. Eric
> has never done that...
> Fifth and final, when Eric was lambasted for his teleportation
> report in USA Today, I sent them a letter refuting their
> negativity. Although the letter did not get published, no one else
> did anything for Eric like this. I wonder if Eric would go out of
> his way for me or anyone else for that matter? When you look at all
> of this, I guess I may have gone out of my way for Eric and it
> appears that it was for no good reason... I wonder if Eric would
> do the same for anyone else especially when he makes such
> accusations that are not of his concern?
> Now you could respond to any of these issues in any way you want to
> and say anything that you want. Before this happens, you have to
> understand that I basically support new technologies across the
> spectrum. I also want us to push the state of the art as far as it
> can go. I think I have been quite successful at this so when you
> write science fiction, leave me out of it....
> "Stephenson, Gary V" ..... wrote:
> This chaos in DoD decision making is emblematic of deeper
> leadership issues. "I don't see any method at all."
> I am a patient person and will wait for some other group with a
> more rational science assessment capability to fund HFGW activity.
> From: Dr. Eric W. Davis
> Sent: Fri 2/22/2008 9:52 AM
> To: andrew beckwith; Stephenson, Gary V; Giorgio Fontana;
> Subject: Sharon Weinberger - that bitch RE: Woodward Award
> Bob Baker's effort to get funding for his HFGW program got
> completely shot down by
> your colleague (RSP[Ron], in your office building) when RSP went with
> MP to the JASONs
> and gave the JASONS a briefing which declared HFGW research to be
> junk science. An Air Force Lt.Col. at DARPA with a background in
> astronomy went
> to a DARPA advanced concepts briefing last year and declared that
> HFGW physics
> is junk science.
> Damage done to Bob Baker's research efforts in the U.S.! My point
> is proven to you,
> But funny how HFGW physics is shown by Stephen Hawking and W.
> Israel (in their
> 1979 book General Relativity: An Einstein Centenary Survey, in
> Chapt. 3 authored
> by D. H. Douglass and V. B. Braginsky) that HFGWs are in the
> gravitational wave
> spectrum. Also, Braginsky, Thorne, Caves, Rudenko, Grishchuk,
> Padilla, et al., all
> have published peer-review journal papers touting how HFGWs are
> produced via
> general relativity using the Gertsenshtein Effect, among many
> other techniques.
Back to Soul & Cosmos............
My point about Creation is that there must be a closure.
Otherwise, Creation and its creatures are left twisting in the wind.
The closure is just the Redemption of Creation.
The alternative to Redemption is pantheism: an endless irresolution calling for personal escape/release.
Eschatology is the overarching distinction between theism and pantheism.
Theism has ever only been about a communal salvation, originating in a tribal context. In its sectarian splintering, it always reverts to a crude tribalism. But that is clearly not its evangelical intent.
There has always been the expectation of the imminence of the Closure. This is, indeed, and article of historical faith. That expectation simply does not translate to any form of scientific cosmology. Human history does not translate to billions of years. Pantheism would certainly win out in any ET contact scenario.
What I need to point out to Jake is that there is no theology that connects with the ETH. Only pantheism can do that, and pantheism is notorious for being anti-theological.
I am debating with Triform on OM.
I have brought up the question of the intrinsic value of life, and state that no one has seriously questioned that value.
The next question is whether there can possibly be too much of a good thing.
To the theists, this is a moot point.
The pantheists, however, are generally of the opinion that, yes, indeed, at some point we will all want to get off the wheel of life.
That is not to say, however, that when this cosmic round ceases, that it will not start all over again.
The theists all agree, that each of us only goes around once in this life. They are silent on the question of quantity. But there are ample indirections to the effect that Creation is not infinite, either in time or space. That remains, however, mainly an unstated, unquestioned assumption, outside the purview of eschatology! The implication is that the value of life is context dependent.
The answer is that neither the theists nor the pantheists place any intrinsic value on an infinitude of life.
On the other hand, those who believe in an infinitude of life seem naturally to embrace pantheism, and its emphasis on escaping from the wheel of life.
The theists place a sacred value on life, but only under the purview of a personal Creator, with a personal stake in our individual lives, and a great emphasis on how we should handle our end of that bargain.
It is only with considerable hesitation that some 'liberal' theists have embraced the 'scientific' notion of a universe teeming with life. The more traditional theists remain most skeptical on that score.
It is only the pantheists who have embraced the many worlds view of science, and then mainly just as a vindication of pantheism over theism, not because they see it as something of infinite intrinsic value.
The social fact of theistic eschatology is that it has focused us on the intrinsic value of historical time, which, by definition, is finite!
But should we be surprised that life, like nearly everything else, is valued according to its availability, or to its being viewed as a privilege rather than as something coerced.
Then we have the matter of the evidence.............
The visitors claim to be ETs. Astronomers find no lack of potential real estate for ETs, within Creation. The Bible seems to reference ETs. The pantheists are quick to embrace ETs.
The discussion with Triform at OM has ended for now.
What is interesting is an emerging pattern. There are any number of contactees that belong to, pass through or lurk at OM. Perhaps more of them there than at any other forum. And then there is me. I'm the homeboy/resident/dozent/ex-officio 'contactee', which is a podium that I sometimes share with Fore. Both of us are nominal Christians, at the least.
And then there is everyone else. The other contactees typically are not Christian, and none of our 'contacts' are that.
If pressed, the contacts will give lip-service to the Great Teacher and to Christ Consciousness, and they'll let us know that Jesus is fine, thank you, and off on assignment to some other world/planet. And that's it. It is the contact party-line, monotonous in its consistency.
What I would like to suggest here is that with the Contacts we have a Confederacy of Dunces.
There is a collective blind-spot amongst the Contacts with regard to Christianity in general. But then, specifically with regard to Christian eschatology, this blind-spot is more like a stick in the eye!
Yes, there is a cone of silence with regard to the Eschaton connection, within this emerging phenomenology and its conveyance via the Internet.
This Conspiracy of the Dunces seems tailor-made to provide me with a Bully Pulpit. A pulpit that has not come before, nor will it come again. This pulpit is mine, either to exploit or to mess-up. I will not pass it up.
The Contacts invariably claim to be most familiar with Earth history, and with our place relative to other civilizations. Invariably, we are very low on the cosmic totem pole, and that our increasingly problematic behavior has placed us in jeopardy of cosmic censure, or worse!
In other words, the Contacts are unanimous in their view that our Day of Judgment draws nigh.
Well! I declare! Where have we heard this message before?
Only from every branch of the Prophetic Tradition that ever existed!
Somebody here is a copy-cat.
Somebody is trying to steal someone else's Thunder.
And neither party to this most egregious act of Plagiarism in history recognizes the existence of the other party.
We have the Prophets on the one hand and the Contacts on the other hand, both giving us the same message, and both acting like two ships passing in the night.
Who are we to blame for this Impasse? Well, the Contacts are the last on this scene, and they claim to know the score and the story.
Do they not owe us an explanation?
It is out of this impasse that comes my Question to all concerned: Is the number of souls finite or infinite.
This is the one most objective point of entry into the contradictory cosmologies of the (pantheist?!) Contacts vs. us Theists.
Answer me this question, and every other question and answer will fall into place.
It is that simple.
It all boils down to this one question.
I have posted my favorable impression of the UN gambit, to the OMF.
Just what the doctor ordered, I would say.
How long now before this stuff hits the fan?
I don't see how it can be more than a matter of weeks, unless there is some very serious back-peddling.
Of course, I have said this before, but still.......
Things with CK seem to be getting back on track with a reasonable alacrity. At first there was hesitation about the above allegation, but then the door was opened a crack.
I don't expect any serious new departures with R&D, however, unless and until this does hit the fan. But it doesn't hurt to man our stations, in the meantime.
And in the meantime, I have recently restated the BPWH at OM.
I have it boiled down about as far as it will go.
It is my last ditch appeal to the theists, vis a vis the pantheists.
I note how the pantheists, ever so belatedly, have piled onto the scientific band-wagon, particularly with respect to cosmology.
The only people who haven't are the literalists, and, of course, they have less than no regard for my messy antics.
It all boils down to the question of the finitude of souls.
The acceptance of Darwin and the Big Bang(s) is tantamount to rejecting the finitude of souls.
There is no way, Jose, that theism can accommodate a quantitatively infinite Creation. That is only to capitulate to pantheism or deism.
If there is going to be a finite number of souls, then we can only suppose that nature is the veil of God.
Ironically, this is just what the pantheists believed traditionally. But now they have become the ever so modern Millies. They have swallowed the bait of scientific materialism, seemingly to embarrass the theists and literalists.
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