Tag Archives: Freedom

Can Freedom and Law coexist without God?

An understanding of the relationship between freedom and law is fundamental to any discourse about the existence of God.

The essence of freedom is that no one person, group of people, or institution, has any natural authority over any other person or group of people. That is self-evident; to assert otherwise is to claim that some are masters, and others slaves.

However, if no one human being can be subverted to the authority of another human being, how can we have such a concept as law? It is fatuous to resort to arguments about the ‘will of the majority’, or ‘fundamental human rights’, or the ‘social contract’ as an ‘authority for government’; they are simply devious mechanisms by which some seek to impose their authority on others.

That leads to the inescapable premise that freedom cannot recognize as law the commands and doctrines of other human beings.

Yet, we do recognize the concept of law as operating to define the limits of freedom. We recognize that there are right and wrong actions.

That leads to the second inescapable premise – that freedom and law can only coexist under the auspices of a Supreme Law. Freedom can only recognize as law that which is universal, and applies equally to each and every human being alike, in the same way that the laws of physics apply to everyone everywhere, without distinction or favour. And like the laws of physics, such a law cannot emanate from another human being.

But does such a supreme law presuppose a supreme lawmaker?

Although physicists would argue that a supreme law does not require a supreme lawmaker, they devote a great deal of time and effort seeking a ‘theory of everything’, or a ‘final theory’. That is really a search for a supreme lawmaker – a fundamental set of principles, or perhaps even a single principle, from which all other laws flow. The question is whether such a supreme lawmaker could simply be an impersonal mathematical construct, or whether it is a conscious Being.

We cannot discover which it is by examining the minutiae of the building blocks of the universe; we need to consider what was built, and why.

If we want to know the intended purpose of a factory, we need to see what final product is produced. So far as we presently know, the final product of the cosmic factory that is the universe is a human organism endowed with a capacity for moral judgment. In that sense, human beings are a conscious manifestation of the fundamental laws of physics, and they give expression to their capacity for moral judgment in the search for justice.

Legal codes going back to Hammurabi, Moses and Asoka, testify to that.

The common underlying principles of such codes, and the recognition in each that those principles emanate from a supra-human authority, tell us that the authors ‘saw’ with stark clarity that freedom and law can only coexist under the auspices of a supreme lawmaker.

Modern systems of government and justice also reveal a recognition that a supreme law requires a supreme lawmaker. The grand structures housing our executive, legislative and judicial ‘authorities’, and their procedural ‘rituals’, are designed to create the impression of a supra-human authority as the foundation of supra-human systems of law and justice. It’s an illusion, of course, and mostly corrupted by those who believe themselves to be ‘gods’.

Yet, even such systems, corrupted as they may be, reflect a basic human condition that refuses to recognize the commands and doctrines of other human beings as legitimate authority to limit freedom. The human condition demands a supreme lawmaker as the only legitimate authority to define and limit human freedom.

Modern neuroscience can now tell us why that is. It is a consequence of a neurological moral network within the human brain. And that network is a manifestation and image of the moral dimension of the fundamental laws of physics.

But the neurological moral network is in fierce competition with primitive human instincts. The instincts for survival, security and reproduction, instincts that are fired by the prospect of pleasure and the fear of pain and death, seek protection and sanctuary in the herd. Herd instinct has compelled us to surrender our freedom to an ever more oppressive global corporate tyranny under which we are nothing more than economic units in service to the financial interests of a select few. Our productivity has become the only measure of our worth.

The challenge now facing the human race, as it has been throughout the ages, is to free ourselves from bondage to our primitive instincts, and exert ourselves to activate the neurological moral network that lives within us all. Only such a supreme effort can bring about a new dawn of civilization in which every human being is free from the commands and doctrines of other human beings, yet living under a system of universally recognized principles. Only such a reconciliation of freedom and law can ensure respect for the worth and dignity of each and every human being.

The neurological moral network tells us that such a reconciliation between freedom and law requires a supreme lawmaker as the author of a supreme law; it requires God. Anything less makes some masters, and others slaves. And that is tyranny.

******

This article is based on the theme of Joseph BH McMillan’s latest book, A ‘Final Theory’ of God.

Copyright © Joseph BH McMillan 2016 All Rights Reserved

A video presentation of A Legal Proof for the Existence of God (Part II): Science in Genesis – Day One

The account of Day One in Genesis gives two fundamental principles essential for an ordered universe capable of sustaining life.

The first is the basis of mathematics – the equation.

Genesis demonstrates how one substance can be converted into another substance without losing its value. The original matter and space, “the heaven and the earth” (verse 1), are first re-described as “the waters” (verse 2), symbolizing their latent life-giving properties.

Then “the waters” are converted into “light” (verse 3), before then being “divided” from “the darkness” (verse 4). The “darkness” clearly symbolizes the matter that remained after the mass annihilation of particles and antiparticles which filled the early universe with billions of photons of light.

This understanding of the meaning of Genesis is not new.

The Jewish scholar Nahmanides (1194 – 1270) said this in his Commentary on Genesis 1: “The heavens and all that is in them are one material, and the earth and all that is within it is [another] material; and the Holy One, blessed be He, created both of them from nothing – and the two of them alone were created, and everything was made from them. … He brought out a very fine element from complete nothingness; it has no substance, but it is the energy that can create, that is able to accept a form and to go from the potential to the actual[1]

And we find a similar statement from Martin Rees: “We’ve realized ever since Einstein that empty space can have a structure such that it can be warped and distorted. Even if shrunk to a ‘point’, it is LATENT with particles and forces.”[2]

The conversion of one substance into another while retaining its intrinsic value is the basis of E = mc2, and indeed all mathematics. And as Rees says, “Mathematical laws underpin the fabric of the universe – not just atoms, but galaxies, stars and people.[3]

Regarding the second principle, the matter and fields that were compressed into a tiny point before the Big Bang were governed by quantum laws of physics. That means that the uncertainty principle applied which leaves the particles and fields free to choose between an infinite number of probabilities. That makes freedom the governing principle. Genesis tells us that law was then imposed on these otherwise free particles and fields which compelled them to adopt those initial structures that were a prerequisite to establishing a universe that could sustain life.

Science does not deviate from the basic account in Genesis, save only in respect of how it happened.

That establishes the basis of the principle of freedom under law, the principle which is the objective of justice and government.

This video presentation addresses these issues:

For the article on which the video is based, click here.

[1] Nahmanides Commentary on Genesis 1: 1: http://www.sefaria.org/Ramban_on_Genesis.1.1.3?lang=en&layout=lines&sidebarLang=all

[2] Rees, Martin, Just Six Numbers (paperback), page 145.

[3] Rees, ibid, page 1.

A Legal Proof for the Existence of God (Part IX): Science in Genesis Chapter 3 – Adam and Eve

The first question to address is whether the story of Adam and Eve refers to two particular individuals, or is a generic reference to the first of the species to acquire specifically human characteristics. And Genesis tells us that it is both.

That is found at Genesis 5, verses 1 and 2:

This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made He him;

Male and female created He them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day they were created.”

The references to “the generations of Adam”, and “the day God created man”, clearly refer to a period of time, and a generic description of the first human beings.

The wording is the same as Genesis 2, verse 4 – “These are the generations of the heavens and the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens.” As we saw in respect of The Garden of Eden, this verse clearly refers to a period of time as well. Conflating the words “generations” and “day” can have no other reasonable explanation.

We then see in verse 2 that the “male and the female” are collectively called “Adam”. There is no mention of Eve.

Adam clearly thus refers to the first human beings endowed with human DNA. However, as we saw in the article on the Garden of Eden, there would have been a number of human beings with this DNA who would have joined up to create new human life in their own genetic image.

So at this stage of the development of the human race there would likely have been several small groups of people with human DNA who were the ancestors of all other human beings.

The San people of southern Africa are the descendants of that branch of the human species that did not succumb to the temptation of eating of the ‘forbidden fruit’.

The story of Adam and Eve relates to that branch of the early species that did take of the fruit, and produced so-called ‘civilized’ human beings.

Temptation

Chapter 3 records what happened when the primitive instinct to reproduce was aroused by the allure of the pleasure to be had by indulging in the act of reproduction, not for the main purpose of reproduction, but with the principal aim of deriving physical pleasure from the act.

It is appropriate here to quote again from the great Jewish philosopher, Philo Judaeus of Alexandria: “For other animals pursue pleasure only in taste and in the acts of generation; but man aims at it by means of his other senses also, devoting himself to whatever sights or sounds can impart pleasure to his eyes or ears.[1]

Chapter 3 deals with the transformation of the former to the latter.

We should set out the whole account of this transformation:

Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:

But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.

And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:

For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.[2]

Before considering these verses, it is important to remember that we are looking at the symbolism of what is being said. But there can be little doubt that the symbolism relates to real events.

These verses symbolize the conflict between primitive human instincts and the promptings of the neurological moral network as it arose in the first of the species. A picture is painted of a woman wrestling with the allure of pleasure by indulging in an act which her conscience is telling her is wrong. She is fantasizing; but about what?

Well, it is impossible to ignore the phallic imagery of the speaking serpent, so the most plausible explanation is that she is fantasizing about sex.

We should also remember that it was very likely that these early humans would have been living with, or at least in close proximity to, the species from which they had emerged, and even other species of primates that were genetically very similar to them. And these other species would also have been “naked.” And more tellingly, these other primates would have indulged in sex quite openly and casually, as they do today.

But at this stage, a number of characteristics had developed in the early human species which distinguished them from other primates. First, they had developed a higher level of communication, as well as a more advanced capacity to reason. But they also had a partially activated neurological moral network which acted as a restraint on their actions by arousing a sense of conscience.

However, the woman would have enjoyed the pleasure of intimacy with Adam. And this would have acted as a spark to ignite her imagination to consider ways to enhance the pleasure derived from sexual intimacy. And her capacity to reason would have been eager to tender suggestions and justifications.

There would have been plenty of examples in the behavior of the more primitive primates living in close proximity. Thus the imagery of the account of the woman being tempted by the serpent is not hard to translate into a real picture. Although constrained by her moral impulses to refrain from sexual encounters other than with Adam, by observing the casual sexual interplay of primates around her, the woman began to fantasize about what it would be like to do the same. She started to imagine what ‘forbidden pleasures’ could be had if she just suppressed the feelings of guilt aroused by such fantasies.

No doubt she would have questioned why it would be wrong for her to do what the other primates were doing. There was no consequence to them for doing it, so what could happen to her? Her reasoning appears to have gone into overdrive to justify doing what she knew would be wrong by suppressing the restraint and guilt demanded by her newly acquired moral aptitude.

Succumbing to Temptation activates the Neurological Moral Network

In the end, the woman succumbed to the allure of the pleasures to be had by indulging her sexual fantasies – “she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat.” And by employing the newly acquired ability to combine reason with an ability to communicate, the woman persuaded “her husband” to do the same.

What they did, it can only be concluded, is indulge in sexual encounters with members of the other species around them, and no doubt with other newly formed humans if and when they encountered them.

Now many reading all this about a woman fantasizing about imitating the sexual practices of apes, and engaging in sexual encounters with them, will no doubt ridicule the whole interpretation. So what evidence is there that human beings could act in such a manner, either back then, or now?

Well plenty, actually.

Let’s start with the fantasy part, and humans looking to apes for ‘moral inspiration’. And for that we need look no further than a professor of philosophy, no less – AC Grayling.

In his book The God Argument – The Case against religion and for Humanism, Grayling claims that the arts (books, music, films and so on) demonstrate the importance of intimate physical relationships to human beings, but laments that the traditional moral consensus that sex should be limited to one other person in a bonding for life somehow inhibits what he calls human “flourishing.”[3]

So Grayling cites the behavior of bonobo chimpanzees as a model for a better approach. Being the primates most like humans, Grayling says that the bonobo’s equivalent of shaking hands is to engage in sex casually and often.[4]

Grayling thus claims that “pleasure is good – and sexual pleasure is very good.”[5]

According to him, this all means that sex only becomes a problem when it is “rationed and starved.”[6] So his solution is sexual experimentation. And with a lot of practice, Grayling claims that humans can better learn to ‘love’ and be ‘loved’.[7]

But if anyone inhibits your sexual self-indulgence, such as a wife or children, then they need to be made to understand that some human beings have certain “needs and interests,” which the victims simply have to “accept and tolerate … and be open-minded” about.[8]

And it is belief in God (religion) that Grayling claims inhibits this kind of sexual indulgence in the pursuit of human “flourishing”.

Grayling’s ‘philosophy’ is really based on a simple premise – why shouldn’t we behave like animals?

So we see that what is said to have aroused the first woman, and the ‘reasoning’ employed to justify indulging that arousal, is something that has stayed with many of the species up to this very day. And Grayling is not unique in that regard; it is not an uncommon phenomenon.

Marketing companies exploit the human obsession with sex to sell everything from ice-cream to motor cars.

But is there any evidence that the first humans did interbreed with other primates? Again, the answer is yes.

In an article in the online journal Public Library of Science (PLoS), Dr Paola Villa of the University of Colorado Museum, and Professor Wil Roebroeks of Lieden University, say that “current genetic data suggest that complex processes of interbreeding and assimilation may have been responsible for the disappearance of the specific Neandertal morphology from the fossil record.”

In their conclusion, they say that “The momentous cultural changes that followed the arrival of AMH (anatomically modern humans) in Western Eurasia were not uniquely due to the residents’ cognitive or technological inferiority causing rapid and total replacement. The Neandertal demise appears to have resulted from a complex and protracted process including multiple dynamic factors such as low population density, interbreeding with some cultural contact, possible male hybrid sterility and contraction in geographic distribution followed by genetic swamping and assimilation by the increasing numbers of modern immigrants.”

And Villa and Roebroeks cite evidence of this interbreeding in modern human beings: “In 2010 a draft sequence of the Neandertal nuclear DNA provided clear evidence of interbreeding between Neandertals and modern humans, estimating that Neandertal inheritance makes up 1–4% of the genomes of people outside of Africa. A revised estimate based on a high-coverage sequence of a Neandertal from the Altai Mountains now suggests 1.5–2.1%.[9]

However, clearly Genesis is not referring to this interbreeding between humans and Neandertals. The story of Adam and Eve relates to a much earlier time when humans were only just emerging as the species. The example of the interbreeding with Neandertals was simply a continuation of something that had started much earlier.

The real significance of the story, however, lies in its explanation of how the neurological moral network in the human brain was initially fully activated, and the central part played in that process by the human capacity to reason. The story demonstrates that reason can be applied to justify anything.

Why was acquiring the “knowledge of good and evil” wrong?

But if the “tree of the knowledge of good and evil” symbolizes the neurological moral network, why, some will ask, would it be wrong to acquire “the knowledge of good and evil’?

The answer is that to awaken the neurological moral network the first human beings had to take some action which offended it. That produced a sense of guilt in the form of a conscience. And as we have seen, according to Genesis, the action that initially activated the neurological moral network  related to pleasure – “the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was PLEASANT to the eyes, and a tree to be DESIRED to make one wise …”[10]

As Philo says, “anyone who follows a reasonable train of conjecture, will say with great propriety, that the … serpent is the symbol of pleasure.”  And he goes on to say that the “serpent is said to have uttered a human voice, because pleasure employs innumerable champions and defenders who take care to advocate its interests, and who dare to assert that the power over everything, both small and great, does of right belong to it without any exception whatever.”[11]

So the story of Eve’s (“the woman’s[12]) temptation clearly refers to the interaction between morality, instinct and reason.

The serpent represents the instinct for reproduction. The symbolism of the serpent ‘speaking’ relates to the allure of pleasure to be had by indulging the instinct for reproduction. And Eve ‘seeing’ “that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, …” symbolizes the application of reason to justify taking actions that we ‘know’ are wrong.

The prohibition against eating of the tree represents morality. It is the neurological moral network within the brain that ‘speaks’ to us of the morality of certain actions, and acts as a restraint to actions which offend against it, if we listen. However, until this moment, the neurological moral network was subconscious.

Consequences of activating the neurological moral network

Once the first humans succumbed to the allure of the pleasure to be had by indulging their primitive instinct for reproduction, the neurological moral network was fully activated. This is symbolized by the words “and the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked.”[13] They realized then that they were different to the other species around them, even those most like them, and that it was not appropriate to simply imitate animal behavior.

However, Genesis tells us that once the neurological moral network had been offended, it gave rise to a sense of guilt, and Adam and Eve are said to do what people do to this day in order to justify their actions; they “hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the Garden.” They attempted to escape the guilt aroused by their actions by seeking justification in their primitive instincts; in “the trees of the garden.”

As we have already seen, the trees in the garden symbolize human instincts, amongst which is the instinct to reproduce. So when they are plagued by a sense of guilt, they seek to justify their actions by reference to their instincts. They ‘reason’ their way to a justification by attempting to convince themselves that they should not feel guilty because what they did was perfectly natural – just like the animals around them.

But clearly the guilt could not be easily silenced. And so, like today, they started the blame-game – Adam blamed Eve, and Eve blamed the serpent. In ‘excusing’ her behavior by claiming that “the serpent beguiled” her, the woman is essentially seeking to defend her actions by saying that the attractions of the pleasures she imagined could be had by indulging her primitive instincts were so strong as to be ‘irresistible’. So she should not be to blame. It was simply a ‘natural’ response to a ‘natural’ desire – much like AC Grayling.

But, of course, it was all to no avail.

Once they had crossed the moral threshold, no longer did they simply respond to an intuitive restraint to their actions from the neurological moral network. They had acquired an ability to identify specific actions as right or wrong. Yet, they were seduced by the allure of the pleasure to be had by indulging their primitive instincts, as humans are today. So they mobilized their enhanced capacity to reason to seek justification for doing that which their neurological moral network told them was wrong.

The Legacy

The ‘punishment’ that God is said to inflict on them clearly symbolizes the conflict that has plagued the descendants of Adam and Eve from that moment on – a conflict between servicing their primitive instincts, or servicing the promptings of their neurological moral network.

We can see that the ‘punishment’ puts “enmity” between the attractions of pleasure to be had by indulging primitive instincts, like those of reproduction, and the consequences of doing so.

The ‘punishment’ said to have been inflicted on Adam clearly relates to human beings falling into bondage to their primitive instincts. From that moment on, human beings would be driven to provide for their survival and security by relentless toil. The instincts for survival and security generate a fear of being unable to provide for themselves, and a fear of anything and anyone perceived to be a threat.

The words “in sorrow shalt thou eat of [the ground] all the days of thy life[14] clearly refers to the instinct for security; “In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground[15] clearly refers to the fear of death, and the survival instinct.

But there was a far more unpleasant consequence of this awakening of the “morality module”. The previous mental tranquility of intuitively refraining from actions because they knew they were wrong, and responding to the promptings of their instincts “only in taste and in the acts of generation”, had been replaced with an obsessive preoccupation with the pleasures and fears aroused by those instincts. No longer were these first humans content to live day by day without the constant fear of want and death – now they were consumed by a passion to indulge the demands of their instincts so as to alleviate their fears, or feed their appetite for pleasure.

As Philo said, they had condemned themselves to “an existence more miserable than death.”

From this point on, Genesis, and the Bible as a whole, records the conflict between human instinct and morality as it plays out in historical context. And how human beings employ reason to justify doing wrong.

Cain and Abel

So we see in the account of Cain and Abel that Abel’s endeavors were proving successful whereas Cain’s were modest. This fired insecurity in Cain, and wounded his vanity. Abel was seen as a threat who had to be neutralized. The symbolism of God speaking to Cain to ask why he is angry, relates to Cain’s neurological moral network intervening in an attempt to quell the anger. God says to Cain, “If thou does’t well, shalt thou not be accepted? And if thou does’t not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.”[16]

The Hebrew for the last sentence actually says this: “And subject unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.”

The message is quite clear – Cain has a choice about how to act. One choice is acceptable, or moral, the other is wrong, and will have consequences. The “desire” to satisfy his instincts is under his control – “subject unto thee.” And morality must rule over the desires of the instincts – “thou shalt rule over him.”

But, like Eve, Cain could not or would not listen to the moral ‘voice’ within him, and planned to slay Abel. We see that Cain “talked with Abel” before he implemented his plan. This indicates that Cain was using ‘reason’, and the ability to communicate, in service of his primitive instincts, and not in service of the “moral law.” And even once he had killed Abel, his ability to reason seeks ways to deny responsibility, saying he does not know where Abel is. Furthermore, he also asks, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” – an instance of reason seeking to excuse accountability for the wellbeing of our fellow human beings.

Cain’s reaction to the guilt that arises from his actions is first to lie, then to ‘justify’ the lie by ‘reasoning’ that he is not responsible.

We see in Cain a regrettable model for those who believe that satisfying their own “needs and interests” at any cost is their primary ‘duty’ in life, and they ‘reason’ their way to justifying whatever actions they take in pursuit of their ‘goals’. And their goals are always the same – indulging their appetite for pleasure, and relieving the fear of their insecurities; in short, being in the service of their primitive instincts, and silencing the voice of morality whenever it ‘speaks’.

However, Cain realizes that he cannot completely silence the voice of morality, and finally acknowledges that “Mine iniquity is greater than can be forgiven.”[17]

And the only way he can live with the guilt of his conscience is to deny God – “And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord.”[18]

That, it seems, is the “mark” which God is said to have put on Cain; the propensity to apply ‘reason’ to justify the servicing of our primitive instincts in defiance of the “moral law” which created us, and which is within us. And humans accomplish that self-deception through the denial of a Supreme Law, and thus a denial of God.

In that way, those who seek to impose their own authority and will on others are free to ‘make’ such ‘laws’ as best serve their own interests, and to implement such measures as are necessary to compel others to submit to those ‘laws’.

That is the meaning of Cain building a city which he names after his son Enoch.[19] God is replaced with the pursuit of power and wealth to feed vanity and allay insecurity.

However, at the end of Chapter 4, the story reverts again to Adam and Eve. Eve conceives and gives birth to Seth, and he has a son called Enos. And it is this strand of the genealogy of Adam and Eve that came to the realization that God is indispensable to human existence. That is because, after the birth of Enos, “then men began to call on the name of the Lord.” [20]

And it is this strand of genealogy that leads to Abraham and on to Moses, and the Ten Commandments. They were the ‘keepers’ of the moral law that reveals God’s Will.

It was through Abraham that “all families of the earth shall be blessed.”[21]

And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.”[22]

The crucial words in that last verse are “because thou hast obeyed my voice.” It was this strand of the human species that stayed most obedient to the principles of the “moral law”; and, it seems, most easily able to decipher it over the clatter of demands from our primitive instincts.

Through Abraham’s descendents God’s moral law would be revealed not just to the Israelites, but to all humanity.

Conclusion

Genesis Chapter 3 reveals a remarkable degree of insight by the author/s of Genesis into the workings of the human brain. However, the most remarkable aspect of the story of Adam and Eve is the light it casts on the human capacity to reason. As the account shows, reason can be applied equally for good or evil. More reason does not guarantee more benevolent and good outcomes; less reason doesn’t automatically lead to malevolent or evil outcomes. Often it is the reverse, as history reveals.

The current consensus that reason can give us objective principles of morality is delusional. Reason is a neutral faculty. Its worth rests entirely on whether it is in the service of morality, or in the service of primitive human instinct.

That is the real message behind the story of Adam and Eve. And it is a message we should heed!

In the next article we will discover how the author/s of Genesis could have had such a profound understanding of the working of the universe, and of the human mind.

———————————————————–

This series of articles is based on the book A ‘Final Theory’ of God by Joseph BH McMillan

Copyright © Joseph BH McMillan 2015 All Rights Reserved

Notes

[1] Philo, On the Creation, LVIII (163).

[2] Genesis 3: 1 – 7.

[3] Grayling, ACX. The God Argument, page 192 and 199. A full Review of The God Argument can be read under Book Reviews on this website jbhmcmillan.com.

[4] Grayling, page 205.

[5] Grayling, page 206.

[6] Grayling, page 201.

[7] Grayling, page 202.

[8] Grayling, page 193.

[9] Villa P, Roebroeks W (2014) Neandertal Demise: An Archaeological Analysis of the Modern Human Superiority Complex. PLoS ONE 9(4): e96424. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0096424.

[10] Genesis 3: 6.

[11] Philo, On the Creation, LVI (157) and (160) respectively.

[12] The name Eve is not used in Genesis 3 until verse 20 – “and Adam called his wife’s  name Eve …”

[13] Genesis 3: 7.

[14] Genesis 3: 17.

[15] Genesis 3: 19.

[16] Genesis 4: 7.

[17] Genesis 4: 13 – also translated “My punishment is more than I can bear.”

[18] Genesis 4: 16.

[19] Genesis 4: 17.

[20] Genesis 4: 20.

[21] Genesis 12: 3.

[22] Genesis 22:18.

A Legal Proof for the Existence of God (Part II) : Science in Genesis – Day One

We should be clear at the outset what we will be doing in this analysis.

We will not simply be substituting God for those things science cannot yet explain, although it is remarkable that Genesis does in fact make reference to the intervention of God at precisely those moments.

Neither will we claim that only an ‘intelligent designer’ could explain the complexity and improbability of life and the universe.

Such arguments risk a charge of ‘mistaken identity’. The counter-argument would be that Genesis simply uses God as a substitute for the laws that govern the universe. That would make God a symbolic description for what scientists call “The Theory of Everything,” or the “Final Theory”.

If the argument for the existence of God is to have enduring credibility, it must show that the fundamental laws themselves speak of a God, and they must speak of a specific and personal God. Otherwise we end up with a vague notion of God that is indistinguishable from some force of nature.

The physicist Steven Weinberg put it well. For God to have a compelling significance, says Weinberg, He has to be shown to be “an interested God”; a “creator and lawgiver who has established not only the laws of nature and the universe but also standards of good and evil”, and “is concerned with our actions”.[1]

As we shall see, that is in fact the message in Genesis. The fundamental laws that govern the universe are God’s Law, and they reveal God’s Will, and those laws are imprinted into the human brain in mathematical form. That was God’s chosen method of communicating with us.

To understand how that was done, we need to go to the beginning. Both science and Genesis recognize that the beginning is where we can discover the origin of the universe, and the origin of our own existence.

The Beginning

References are to the King James Version of the Bible because it is reputed to be the closest to the original translation.

For ease of reference, these are the verses we shall address in this article:

  1. In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
  2. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
  3. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
  4. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
  5. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

So let’s consider each of those verses in turn and compare them to the scientific explanations.

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”

First, we have to identify exactly what is meant by “the heaven and the earth.”

Clearly “the earth” does not refer to planet Earth, because the next verse says “the earth was without form, and void,” and planet Earth is not “without form and void.” And anyway, references to planet Earth only come later.

So “the earth” can only refer to matter, the stuff that was going to be used to create the universe.

Likewise, reference to “the heaven” cannot mean Heaven in the sense of the realm in which God is said to exist, because it would be most peculiar if God had to create the very domain in which He resides. The only reasonable explanation is that “the heaven” refers to space, the place in which the matter (“the earth”) exists.

So Genesis sets out right at the beginning the material that was going to be used to create the universe, and where it was – matter and space.

That is identical to the scientific explanation. Scientists calculate that all matter that exists in the universe was at one time concentrated into one dense point, variously described as the size of a grain of sand or a football. But since this matter had to exist in something, space itself was condensed into this tiny confined mass as well. And Genesis confirms that. The statement that “darkness was upon the face of the deep” can only refer to the fact that there was no space into which light could be emitted. This concentration of matter and space was so dense that even light could not escape, like a black hole, but with an immensely greater gravity.

However, although science and Genesis agree on where the material that makes up the universe came from, they don’t agree on how it got there. Genesis says it was God, and scientists admit that they have no idea. And that should not surprise us because, as Max Planck said, “Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of Nature. And it is because in the last analysis we ourselves are part of the mystery we are trying to solve.”[2]

So there we have the material that will be used to create the universe and, ultimately, life.

Next we have to consider what this material looked like.

“And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep.”

Genesis thus gives a very precise description of what this dense mass of matter and space looked like.

But what of science?

Here are some descriptions from a number of scientists.

According to the ex-Royal Astronomer of Britain, Martin Rees, it was an “ultra-dense primal medium that was almost structureless.” [3]

Brian Greene says that it was “a highly disordered state of primeval chaos.”[4] He goes on to describe it as “… a wild and energetic realm of primordial chaos; [with] extremes of heat and colossal density,”[5] in which “gravity was by far the dominant force.”[6]

And in respect of “heaven”, Greene says this about “space” in the “preexisting” universe: “But if the universe is spatially infinite, there was already an infinite spatial expanse at the moment of the big bang.[7]

These scientific descriptions are virtually identical to the description in Genesis – “the heaven and the earth” were “without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep.

However, the next verse of Genesis then appears to refer to something that has not been mentioned before.

“And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.”

The obvious question is, ‘where did “the waters” suddenly come from’? Critics of Genesis love scoffing at this verse, arguing that water did not appear on the Earth until relatively recently.

But that ignores the methodology used in Genesis. As we shall see, this re-description of what just went before is a common literary technique applied in Genesis to convey meaning. In this case, matter and space, previously referred to as “the heaven and the earth,” are simply re-described as “the waters.” And that is a very astute way of explaining the inherent ability of matter and space to create life. Water is perceived as life-giving and life-sustaining.

Genesis is telling us that matter and space, although clearly inorganic, had the built-in properties to create life. The fact that matter and space are concentrated into a “primordial chaos” does not mean that they are incapable of producing life. As Martin Rees says, Einstein showed that matter and space, “Even if shrunk to a ‘point’, … is LATENT with particles and forces.”[8] Rees thus cautions scientists (and Stephen Hawking comes to mind) against claiming that the “universe can arise ‘from nothing’”.[9]

So re-describing matter and space as “the waters” was obviously deliberate.

But why then the reference to “the Spirit of God” moving across “the waters”?

This is a very important verse because it tells us that this dense concentration of matter and space was inert. It could not transform itself into a different state. It needed something to initiate the process.

So here we encounter the first significant distinction between simply substituting God for some unexplained phenomenon of physics, and instead looking to the fundamental principles to identify the requirement for God. And the necessity for God relates to the Principle of Freedom referred to in the previous article.

Most physicists today subscribe to the theory of “inflation” to explain how the initial matter and space was transformed into the universe as we know it. According to this theory, within the dense matter and space was an anti-gravity force physicists call an “inflaton field” – inflation without the “i”. This field ‘wriggled’ around in the dense chaos until at some point it reached a “value” that caused it to exert an enormous outward force that expanded the initial matter and space at a phenomenal rate, causing the Big Bang.

Greene says that the inflaton field exerted a repulsive force which overwhelmed gravity. If we think of gravity as the positive force, the inflaton field would be the negative force. The effect was that the “negative pressure” of the inflaton field caused a “gigantic gravitational repulsion that drove every region of space to rush away from every other.”[10]

However, physicists can’t agree on what caused the inflaton field to be activated. According to Michio Kaku, “there are over fifty proposals explaining what turned on inflation and what eventually terminated it.”[11]

Greene acknowledges science’s “ignorance of why there is an inflaton field, why its potential energy bowl has the right shape for inflation to have occurred, why there are space and time within which the whole discussion can take place, and … why there is something rather than nothing.[12]

With an acknowledgement like that, it is tempting to fill the gaps with God. But that is the danger in the “intelligent design” argument. If we simply ascribe to God those things Greene acknowledges science doesn’t yet understand, the argument runs the risk of science coming up with an explanation. Then the whole “intelligent design” argument will lie in tatters because it would appear as though science had disproved the existence God. But it would only appear that way because the argument had been based on the wrong evidence. That is a common occurrence in the law when a case is built on the wrong evidence which is then used to disprove the case it was intended to prove.

Instead, we need to consider the fundamental principles that determine the behavior of the inflaton field itself.

Fields are subject to the same quantum mechanical principles as particles. As Greene says, “the uncertainty principle also applies to fields.”[13] And Greene notes that the “quantum processes will inject random jumps into a Higgs Field’s value …[14]

So both particles and fields in this pre-existing universe were governed by quantum principles, and as we saw in the previous article, there are two distinct aspects to quantum behavior.

The first relates to probabilities. Particles and fields are free to choose from an infinite number of probabilities. As Kaku says, this establishes “free will.”[15] Greene explains this correlation between the quantum behavior of particles and fields like this: “the particle is free to take on this or that velocity …or … a mixture of many different velocities … For fields, the situation is similar.[16]

So not only is freedom the fundamental principle of the laws that govern the universe, it was also the fundamental principle of the quantum laws that governed what Genesis describes as “the heaven and the earth”, and science calls a “primordial chaos.”

But we should also recall that physicists realize that the probabilities could be manipulated or controlled. However, in order to adopt a specific position, they still require the second aspect of quantum law – an observation. Only then will they adopt a fixed position. And that is what would be required in order for the “fundamental laws of quantum physics [to] morph into the classical laws[17] that created the universe we have today; a universe capable of creating and sustaining life.

A pre-requisite for this transformation was that the particles and inflaton field had to be compelled by something outside the law, but able to control the law, to adopt the specific positions and properties that created the necessary structures to build the universe. The law itself could not do that. And Genesis tells us that this required “the spirit of God.”

“And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.”

According to Genesis, the “the spirit of God” was the mechanism through which free particles and fields were compelled to adopt the positions and properties that would initiate the inflationary burst and Big Bang.

Genesis symbolizes this with the words “And God said, let there be light.” What had been “the heaven and the earth” was being commanded to transform into something entirely different – “light.” And when the command was given, “there was light”.

But how does that fit with the science? Well, as it happens, it fits exactly.

According to science, the Big Bang spewed billions upon billions of particles and anti-particles into the universe. However, when particles collide with anti-particles, they destroy each other creating a photon of light. So at the very earliest moments after the Big Bang the universe would have been filled with light, just as Genesis says.

But here is the problem. If there were an equal number of particles and anti-particles they would all have destroyed each other, leaving a universe full of light with no particles to create stars, planets and people. As the British physicists Brain Cox and Jeff Forshaw say in their book Why does E = mc2?, “The question ‘why is the universe not just filled with light and nothing else?’ is still open-ended, …[18]

That is where the next verse of Genesis is relevant.

“And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.”

As we know, because they constitute our bodies and everything we see in the universe, some particles did survive. There must have been a slight excess of particles over anti-particles. But not just any amount of particles, but the precise amount to ensure that the universe as we know it survived.

If there had been too many particles, gravity would have condensed them quickly, and the universe would have folded in on itself. If there had been too few particles, gravity would not have been strong enough to bring them together to create stars and planets, and ultimately life.

But not only were the number of particles exactly right, the number was so precise that they perfectly balanced the gravity pulling them together with the anti-gravity force that pushes the universe to expand.

Scientist simply do not know why this happened. Some have suggested that the cooling of the universe after the Big Bang created the excess, while others argue that in the case of some particles the anti-particle decomposes at a faster rate than the particle.

Whatever the cause, what is certain is that the timing of the initial expansion was perfect to ensure that there would be an excess of particles that would form together to create the universe.

But there is an even more important element to this. That fine balance between light and particles, and the various forces at work, had to be maintained so that the universe didn’t simply descend into chaos again. Martin Rees cites Sakharov to emphasize the point: “As Sakharov points out, our very existence depends on an irreversible effect that established an excess of matter over antimatter … Had that not occurred, all the matter would have been annihilated with an equal amount of antimatter, leaving a universe containing no atoms at all.”[19]

Although science has no idea why this should be, Genesis provides an explanation; and again it relates to the other fundamental principle of quantum physics – an observation.

In order to create the “irreversible effect” that would  ensure that there was enough matter in the universe, Genesis tells us that at a crucial moment after the creation of light, God made an observation, thus making the amount of matter and balance of forces in the universe permanent. But we don’t have to read anything into the description to find reference to an observation, it is in plain language – “And God saw the light.”

Furthermore, when God is said to have observed the light, He saw “that it was good.” That introduces a moral element into creation, and more importantly, into the properties of the fundamental principles of physics. And that moral element can only relate to the fact that order had been created from chaos, and the building blocks for life had been established.

The fact that Genesis reveals that this observation by God was made at precisely the moment required to leave enough matter from which to build the universe comes in the next words: “and God divided the light from the darkness.”

The reference to “darkness” as a contrast to “light” perfectly portrays the fact that not all the material that we started with, “the heaven and the earth,” had been converted to “light”. There was something left over that could be separated from the “light” – “darkness.” This description can only refer to those particles that had not been converted to photons by colliding with anti-particles. These excess particles were not particles of “light.

We can only read these verses in Genesis in utter amazement. To so precisely describe, thousands of years ago, what science is only now discovering, is remarkable to say the least. How that could be will be the subject of a subsequent article on insight.

And so we come to the final verse of “the first day.”

“And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.”

This is an important verse which is dealt with in detail in the book. But for this article, we will only briefly mention its significance.

It has two aspects.

The first relates to the naming of what God is said to have created – “Day” and “Night”. And this naming is emphasized with the use of capital letters.

Such naming only occurs three times in Genesis – this verse, and verses 8 and 10 in days two and three respectively. And it occurs at precisely those moments when certain fundamental quantum laws are transformed into the Classical, Newtonian laws which give us the predictable, deterministic universe that is required to facilitate the emergence of life.

Use of the words “Day” and “Night” signifies that certain of the “fundamental laws of quantum physics [had] morphed into the classical laws”. However, at this stage, only one aspect of the freedom of particles and fields had been limited by being subjected to law. And that was a law that created the basic material and forces in the right quantities that were required to start building the universe. But more importantly, those materials and forces were not only in precisely the right quantities, they were also perfectly balanced, and had been made permanent with an observation. That created the “irreversible effect that established an excess of matter over antimatter”.

It’s like building a house. The necessary materials in the right quantities are calculated from a plan and delivered to the construction site. Only then can the building begin.

But even here, right at the beginning, we find an important coincidence between the creation of the universe, and what would much later become the human quest for a principle of government. The fundamental principle that we seek to establish in government is freedom under the law. And Genesis tells us that this is where it came from; it is a fundamental principle that informs the workings of the whole universe.

Otherwise free particles and fields, while remaining inherently free, operate in accordance with law. The particles and fields cooperate together under the law in order to bring about the intended will of the Lawmaker.

The second aspect of this verse is “And the evening and the morning were the first day.”

A whole chapter is devoted to this verse in the book, but for now we need only note that this verse clearly relates to what we call time. And by linking time to “Day” and “Night”, this verse reinforces the message that the first requirement for an ordered and predictable basis for the universe had been established. The amount of material and forces in the universe was certain and irreversible. We could be as certain of that as we are certain that ‘night follows day’.

Finally, by putting “the evening” before “the morning”, Genesis also tells us how time is calculated. It is done by reference to motion relative to a fixed event. In the case of the universe, that event is the Big Bang. And that is how time in space, a spacetime interval, is calculated. Time here on Earth is likewise determined by reference to a fixed point – the Sun. It is the motions of the Earth in relation to the Sun, its rotation and orbit, that are the basis for calculating Earth-time.

Conclusion

So at the end of “the first day” we have all the material and forces in exactly the right quantities and balance to start building the universe, and ultimately life. We also have time. But there was more to be done before the universe would be ready for life. There were still aspects of the quantum principle of freedom that had to be subjected to law.

We will address those in the next article when we examine Day Two.

——————————

This series of articles is based on the book A ‘Final Theory’ of God by Joseph BH McMillan. These articles are intended as a guide to reading the more detailed evidence and arguments set out in the book.

Copyright © Joseph BH McMillan All Rights Reserved

[1] Weinberg, Dreams of a Final Theory (paperback), page 244.

[2] Kaku, Parallel Worlds, (paperback)page 158.

[3] Rees, Just Six Numbers (paperback), page 126 – capitals my emphasis.

[4] Greene, The Fabric of the Cosmos (paperback), page 320.

[5] Green pages 322 and 323 respectively.

[6] Greene, page 272.

[7] Greene, page 249 – emphasis is his.

[8] Rees, page 145.

[9] Rees, page 145.

[10] Greene, page 284.

[11] Kaku, page 14.

[12] Greene, page 286.

[13] Greene, page 306

[14] Greene, page 283.

[15] Kaku, page 149.

[16] Greene, page 306.

[17] Greene, page 199.

[18] Cox and Forshaw, Why does E=mc2? (paperback), page 200.

[19] Rees, page 154 – my emphasis on irreversible.

A Legal Proof for the Existence of God (Part I)

The most compelling evidence for the existence of a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker is not our places of worship, but the human quest for justice. From the earliest legal codes of Ur-Nammu (2050 BC) and Hammurabi (1754 BC), through the Ten Commandments and the Edicts of Asoka (250 BC), to our modern day charters and declarations of human rights and freedoms, the quest for justice reveals a search for a Supreme law and a Supreme Lawmaker.

The principles underlying these various endeavours to establish justice are consistent throughout history, even though the consequences for transgression reflect the historical times.

This series of articles will adduce the evidence to show that the reason for the remarkable universal consistency in the underlying principles of justice is to be found in the way God chose to reveal Himself to us, and how that enables us to know His Law and His Will. Later articles will also address the questions of good and evil, the origin of human consciousness, and the inevitability of a judgment for our actions.

The aim of this first article is to outline the arguments to provide a general reference point for subsequent articles.

What we are

Human beings are in every respect a manifestation of the fundamental laws that govern the universe. But those laws are also imprinted into our brains in mathematical form, and our brains have mechanisms to convert the mathematical raw data into words, images and concepts.

One of those mechanisms converts the raw mathematical data into moral principles. We will refer to this mechanism as the ‘neurological moral network’.

It is this network that tells us that freedom is the Fundamental Principle of Morality and Justice. And it is this Principle that speaks to us of a Supreme Lawmaker that we call God.

In other words, if there is a God, then He must have chosen to reveal Himself to us through mathematical principles which we have an ability to comprehend. Most of us act on this mathematical data subconsciously. There are some, however, like the Prophets, who could consciously convert this raw data into an accurate account of the origin of the universe and life, and God’s omnipotent hand in that creation.

A good analogy would be a digital TV. The digital code is fed into the TV where it is converted into words and images. Very few of us would be able to make any sense of the digital code itself – we just hear the words and see the pictures.

In order to understand how the Principle of Freedom speaks to us of God, we first need to consider what that Principle is, and what obligations operate to limit it.

 The Principle of Freedom and the limiting obligations

The Principle of Freedom is that no one person, or group of people, has any natural authority over any other person.

But that principle has a reciprocal obligation – ‘if no other human being has any natural authority over me, then I can’t have any natural authority over any other human being either’. That reflects the reciprocity found in a mathematical equation, and it is Newton’s Third Law – for every action there must be an equal and opposite reaction.

That then gives us the negative moral obligation that tells us that we must refrain from interfering with the freedom of others. And if we reflect on that for a second, the world would be a much better place if we all lived by that simple principle.

However, the evidence shows that we also recognize positive obligations – obligations to help others. But we do not recognize these obligations because some other person tells us that we should. We simply know that we have these obligations. And the evidence for these positive obligations comes from the creation of new life.

The only time in life that we freely and voluntarily assume onerous obligations, not out of fear of punishment, or the prospect of some advantage, or because we are told by some ‘authority’ to assume them, but out of unconditional love, is when we create new human life in our own image.

But that is only the case if we are not so totally in bondage to our primitive instincts that we cannot recognize those obligations. We will consider that point more fully when we deal with the principles of morality.

When we recognize the obligations we have towards the life we create, we also recognize that all human life must be deserving of the same obligations, especially the life that is least able to fend for itself.

However, as later articles will show, that does not mean that we can only recognize these positive obligations when we create new life. It simply means that the one time in life when we automatically recognize these obligations is when we create new life. That is because the obligations are imprinted into our brains as raw mathematical data, and are accessible to all of us if we choose to look for them.

How Freedom speaks to us of God and His Law

Freedom cannot recognize as law the commands, doctrines and opinions of other human beings.

Yet we still recognize that we do have certain fundamental obligations, not because someone tells us that we have those obligations, but because they are imprinted into our brains as a moral law.

So the only way freedom and law can coexist is under the authority of a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker. Anything else would render some of us slaves, and the others masters.

We find the same thing in physics.

Fundamental particles, like electrons and quarks, are free to choose from an infinite number of probabilities. Scientists call this property a particle’s wavefunction.

In his book Parallel Worlds, the popular TV physicist, Michio Kaku, describes this property of particles as follows: “In a quantum play, the actors suddenly throw away the script and act on their own. The puppets cut their strings. Free will has been established.”

That puts freedom as the fundamental principle of the laws that govern the universe.

However, if freedom is the foundation of the law, some other aspect of the law cannot compel particles to form the structures that create the world we see all around us. That would violate the symmetry that underlies the whole concept of a law.

Only something above the law can do that.

But can the probabilities of fundamental particles be manipulated or controlled to form the structures required to create the universe and life? According to Michio Kaku, that is almost certainly the case. He notes that physicists realize that if they could manipulate the probabilities of fundamental particles, then anything would be possible. Although that is still beyond the technical capabilities of science, it does suggest that the probabilities can be controlled.

However, if the probabilities can be controlled to ensure that particles form the structures necessary to create the universe and life, how could they be compelled to maintain those structures so that the order in the universe does not disintegrate into chaos?

That is where the second aspect to particle behavior comes into play. Particles can only assume a particular position when they are observed; literally, when they are looked at. That creates what the physicist Andrei Sakharov described as the “irreversible effect” which was crucial in the early stages of the universe.

It is this two-fold aspect of particle behavior that speaks of a Supreme Lawmaker. Only a Supreme Lawmaker can compel free particles to form the structures necessary to create an ordered and stable universe capable of creating and sustaining life, and that ordered state is made permanent with an observation.

That brings us to the first instance of convergence between science and religion.

The very first verses of Genesis exactly mirror this process with the words “And God said …” followed by “And God saw …”

We should imagine for a minute the author or authors of Genesis sitting down to write an account of the origins of the universe several thousand years ago. To come up with the idea that it all happened when God spoke to matter (“the earth”) that was “without form, and void” and told it to become “light”, and then “saw” the light and decided “that it was good”, would be a rather peculiar way to convince people of a God. In fact, that description didn’t even make any sense just a couple of hundred years ago. It has only been since the advent of quantum physics that the Genesis account does not seem that ridiculous any longer. And as we shall see in the next articles that look at the first few chapters of Genesis, not just verse by verse, but word by word, Genesis has pre-empted science in every respect, and continues to do so.

How the author/s of Genesis could have known all this will be the subject of a subsequent article on insight.

But first, we need to consider how science, philosophy and religion all reveal the search for a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker.

Science, philosophy and religion all reveal the search for a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker

In religion the search for a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker is quite obvious.

In science we find exactly the same thing, except scientists don’t express it in that way.

Today we hear much from scientists about what they call “The Theory of Everything”, or “The Final Theory”.  They believe that such a theory could provide a comprehensive explanation of how the universe and life came about by reference to certain, as yet undiscovered, fundamental principles. So the ‘Supreme Law’ in science is the elusive “Final Theory”.

However, the issue of probabilities causes a problem. What scientists find is that if there is only this one universe, the probability that it would have ended up this way is just too remote.

So they get round that problem by simply multiplying the number of universes, and then claim that a universe like ours was bound to emerge somewhere, and it just happens to be here.

This is what scientists today call the multiverse theory. The multiverse is science’s ‘Supreme Lawmaker’. A ‘Supreme Lawmaker’ that really comes down to probabilities.

An analogy would be a Multi-Lottery. Instead of multiplying the number of entries into one lottery, we multiply the number of lotteries, and then argue that our numbers must come up in one of those lotteries.

They won’t, of course, unless a draw is made, and we can check our numbers. That relates to the problem of the observation element of the properties of fundamental particles.

When we get to philosophy, we find that on the whole, especially in ‘modern’ philosophy, the arguments are so impenetrable that they are really quite incomprehensible to ordinary people. Much of this ‘modern’ philosophy is little less than an extravagant academic indulgence. Interesting, perhaps, to fellow philosophers, but quite irrelevant to anyone else in their daily lives.

Yet earlier philosophical theories do impact our lives to a considerable extent. Most governments today operate on a version of the Social Contract theory set out by John Locke and others.

The Social Contract theory finds a ‘Supreme Lawmaker’ in the majority electing the government, and the government then making the ‘Supreme Law’.

The existence of an actual Supreme Law and Supreme Lawmaker is therefore important to the way we govern ourselves.

The Relevance of the Existence of a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker

It was the French philosopher, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, another proponent of the Social Contract theory, who said that anyone can scribble his opinions on stone, or in some book or declaration, then claim that God told him to do it and that we all have an obligation to do as he says.

That is a valid point, although making the majority the ‘Supreme Lawmaker’ has exactly the same effect, unless there are specific and strict limitations to what government can do as a lawmaker. But if there are such limitations, then the government cannot properly be considered a Supreme Lawmaker, and we are back to square one.

The problem is not with the majority electing the government. The problem arises when the government then imposes obligations on the people that violate the fundamental principles of the Universal Law.

That is the critical issue that the Founding Fathers so clearly recognized.

This series of articles will demonstrate that the Founding Fathers were exactly right when they proclaimed that there are certain fundamental and inviolable principles that were handed down to us by our Creator. These articles set out the evidence that proves them right, while also putting meat on the bones of those principles. The evidence and arguments set out in these articles aims to be a guide to the more detailed evidence and arguments set out in my book, A ‘Final Theory’ of God.

However, the evidence for a Supreme Lawmaker as the author of a Supreme Law is not simply a matter of curiosity. It has profound implications for government. It means that if government passes laws that violate the fundamental principles of the Supreme Law, those laws are by definition invalid. They are unjust laws that lead by natural tendency to oppression and tyranny, and we have an obligation, and a duty, as human beings, to oppose and resist those laws, within the bounds of the moral law, in order to preserve our freedom, and uphold the Supreme Law.

That is an obligation imposed on us by the Supreme Law itself. And it is a duty we have to the Supreme Lawmaker in order that His “will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.”

The Next Article

The next article examines the convergence of science and Genesis with an analysis of the “first day”.

This series of articles is based on the book A ‘Final Theory’ of God by Joseph BH McMillan

Read Part II.

Copyright © Joseph BH McMillan 2015 All Rights Reserved

 

 

Philosophical Origins of the Modern Liberal Fundamentalist State – Part II

“Hereby it is manifest that during time when men live without a common power to keep them all in awe, they are in that condition which is called war; and such a war as is of every man against every man.”
And then there is this: “The desires, and other passions of man, are in themselves no sin. No more are the actions that proceed from those passions till they know a law that forbids them; which till laws be made they cannot know, nor can any law be made till they have agreed upon the person that shall make it.”
That is Thomas Hobbes (1588 – 1679) in Leviathan, also known as the Matter, Form, and Authority of Government – which really says it all.
This is quite frightening stuff, but remarkably, such sentiments still represent exactly the modern Liberal Fundamentalist state.
What Hobbes is saying is that human beings are too stupid and selfish to act in their own long term interests, or to ‘know’ what is right and wrong. So, he says, we need to elect one or more of our number to tell us how to act in our own best interests, and to tell us what is right and wrong.
He doesn’t explain how a group of stupid, selfish people, electing a stupid, selfish person from their midst, suddenly endows that person with the ‘wisdom’ to know what is right and wrong, and to act in a way that does not reflect his own stupid and selfish character.
Yet that is precisely what modern day politicians claim is the effect of their ascendance to power – that somehow they gain some superior ´wisdom´, ´conscience´, and sense of ´justice´, to the rest of us.

John Locke (1632 – 1704)

So although modern day ´philosophers´ will claim that Hobbes´ was too crude, the fact remains that his formula is precisely the model of modern day Western democratic government.
John Locke ‘refined’ Hobbes’ model. He started his ´philosophy´ of government with what is my Principle 1 – that no person has any natural authority to tell another person what to do.
He agrees that the natural state of man is “a state of perfect freedom to order their actions and dispose of their possessions and persons, as they think fit, within the bounds of the law of nature; without asking leave, or depending upon the will of any other man.”
He also said that men are in “a state also of equality, wherein all the power and jurisdiction is reciprocal, no one having more than another.”
So, at first sight, it seems as though Locke is heading in the right direction.
But Locke carried with him plenty of baggage. He was an academic at Oxford University, then later the personal physician and companion of a certain English nobleman called the Earl of Shaftesbury. Locke was also teacher to Shaftesbury’s children.
I always find it ironic that someone so absolutely beholden for his living to another, especially an English nobleman, should be preaching about freedom.
And this quickly comes out in his writing.
Unlike Hobbes, Locke looks to the law of nature; “for the law of nature would, as all other laws that concern men in this world, be in vain, if there were nobody that in the state of nature had a power to execute that law, and thereby preserve the innocent, and restrain offenders.”
So, within 3 numbered paragraphs of his Second Treatise, Locke is already looking for someone to govern; to enforce the “law of nature.”
Accordingly, after justifying, in his chapter “Of Property”, why the likes of Shaftesbury can legitimately ‘own’ enormous amounts of property, to the exclusion of “common possession,” Locke latches onto the concept of “the majority”, and the “perfect democracy.”
Locke claims that “no one can be put out of [his freedom, equality, and independence], and subjected to the political power of another, without his own consent.”
Phew, so far so good!
And “consent” is exactly what Locke claims men do, “for their comfortable, safe, and peaceable living one amongst another.”
But here is where Locke becomes bankrupt in his ´thinking´. He is unable to identify any principles to which all people would consent in order to conduct relations within their new community, so he simply claims that man “divests himself of his natural liberty, and puts on the bonds of civil society, … by agreeing with other men to join and unite into a community, for their comfortable, safe, and peaceable living one amongst another, in a secure enjoyment of their properties, and a greater security against any that are not of it.”
And where do the ´rules´ to govern come from? Alarmingly, Locke says this: “ … the majority have a right to act and conclude the rest.”
So there it is – a “right” of the “majority” to dictate to the rest of us.
And done, says Locke, because “when any number of men have, by the consent of every individual, made a community, they have thereby made that community one body, with a power to act as one body, which is only the will and determination of the majority; … it is necessary the body should move that way whither the greater force carries it, which is the consent of the majority: … and so every one is bound by that consent to be concluded by the majority.”
What a devious little man! But I’m sure his noble Earl was pleased.
Locke’s ´thinking´ is a perfect example of turning logic on its head. We consent to relinquish our freedom to the majority, so that I have unwittingly ‘consented’ to be ruled by “that way whither the greater force carries it, which is the consent of the majority.”??
How can I consent to relinquish my consent to the consent of the majority, but still retain my freedom?
But this inverted logic is only the start of Locke’s ‘treatise’.
He goes on to claim that men give up their freedom “to be regulated by laws made by society.”
Locke argues that man consents to “give up the equality, liberty, and executive power [he] had in the state of nature, into the hands of the society,” because of “three defects” which make “the state of nature so unsafe and uneasy.”
Those “three defects”, he claims, are: no “established, settled, known” laws of right and wrong to settle controversies; no “known and indifferent” judges, with authority to determine disputes by reference to laws; and lastly, no “power” to execute punishment.
So, Locke argues, man consents to give up his condition of freedom (or as Locke describes it, “the equality, liberty, and executive power [he] had in the state of nature”), only “with an intention [to] better preserve himself, his liberty and property.”
Thus, says Locke, “the power of the society, or legislative constituted by them, can never be supposed to extend farther than the common good; but is obliged to secure every one’s property, by providing against those three defects above-mentioned, that made the state of nature so unsafe and uneasy.”
After briefly outlining the bounds of government, Locke sets out his idea of the “perfect democracy.”
“The majority having, as has been showed, upon men’s first uniting into society, the whole power of the community naturally in them, may employ all that power in making laws for the community from time to time, and executing those laws by officers of their own appointing; and then the form of the government is a perfect democracy.”
Locke then delineates the “bounds” of government: to govern by promulgated established laws; the laws must be “designed for no other end ultimately, but the good of the people;” government “must not raise taxes on the property of people, without the consent of the people;” and the legislator must not “transfer the power of making laws to anybody else.”
The “good of the people”? Tax, by consent of the majority? The “common good”? The majority ‘consenting’ on my behalf? “the greater force carries it, which is the consent of the majority”?
What on earth is left of my freedom?
I have sacrificed freedom to the common good, to the majority, to the “greater force” of the “consent of the majority”? I have agreed that the majority can consent to government appropriating my property under the guise of tax?
Oh Yes, I nearly forgot! If government is naughty and ventures beyond its mandate, say by imposing additional taxes, we can – wait for it – we can be “aggrieved.” And we can take our grievance to ….? Well – to the government. And if government laughs at us, what then? “The appeal lies nowhere but to Heaven.”
I’m not kidding, that’s what Locke says. The nobleman, the Earl of Shaftsbury, must have been pleased with his child-minder!
But it gets worse. “The legislative can never revert to the people whilst the government lasts; because having provided a legislative with power to continue for ever, they have given up their political power to the legislative, and cannot resume it.”
Really? Where, and when, exactly did man consent to get ‘Shafted’ by government.
But can we please perhaps vote a government out which has abused and exceeded its mandate?
Well, “if [the people] have set limits to the duration of their legislative, and made this supreme power in any person, or assembly, only temporary; or, else, when by the miscarriages of those in authority it is forfeited; upon the forfeiture, or at the determination of the time set, it reverts to the society, and the people have a right to act as supreme, and continue the legislative in themselves; or to erect a new form, or under the old form place it in new hands, as they think good.”
So here is the first big problem. If the government has abused its mandate to please the majority who, for example, want the minority to be compelled to hand over large amounts of property to the majority, how do you get rid of the government?
You can only do so if you can get the majority to relinquish its iron grip on your possessions! Remember, it’s all about the “greater force” of the “consent of the majority.” How likely is that?
The other possibility Locke envisages is the people expelling the government. But this he reserves only to the case where government uses force upon the people without authority and in breach of its mandate. Then, says Locke, “the people have the right to remove it by force.”
Fat chance!!
By this time, government has, by majority consent, usually reserved most or all force to itself. So the aggrieved have to overcome two obstacles: the majority; and if they can achieve that, the power the people have vested in government. And, of course, all governments make insurrection a criminal offence, even a treasonable offence, entitling government to suspend all ‘rights’; in the common good, and for the preservation of law and order, of course.
Locke himself describes this state as “a state of war with the people.”
Now, anyone thinking this through should quickly see that placing government in the hands of a majority, and endowing it with absolute authority to use force, makes it impossible to remove government so long as it attracts majority support, no matter how much it tramples over its original mandate. And the easiest way to maintain majority support is to take from the minority and give to the majority. But we are not talking here about some tiny proportion of the people having their freedoms trampled on. Usually it means 50% or more of the people, as any Western democratic election shows.
Even providing that “a well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed,” as in Amendment II of the United States Constitution, does not come close to curing this mechanism of oppression.
The well regulated Militia would have to be a rival army equal to, or more powerful than, the government forces, to be effective in such a circumstance. Government can also simply define what this Militia may comprise, as it does, or simply maintain that the military forces of the state are that Militia.
Most governments also simply restrict the “right of the people to keep and bear arms.”
Any half-wit should know that no government is going to allow an effective rival army to exist to act as a regulator of its affairs and power.
If we follow Locke’s ‘reasoning’ through therefore, we discover that man has consented to surrender his freedom in order to attain those basic securities necessary to remedy the defects of man’s state of nature, what I call his condition of freedom, the three rather insignificant “defects” of his freedom, only to find he will be subject to the whim of the majority, backed up by a force that he has no hope of challenging. In man’s condition of freedom, the principal threat came from those of relatively equal strength to himself; under Locke’s formula, the threat is from an immensely more powerful entity, supported by an easily manipulated majority.
Who in their right mind would consent to such an inversion of threat?
‘Nanny Boy’, Shafter’s child-minder and ‘companion’ – companion? Hmm? – reinforced his vision of tyranny in a piece of drivel called A Letter Concerning Toleration.
Nanny Boy poses himself a hypothetical question: “What if the [government] should enjoin any thing by his authority, that appears unlawful to the conscience of a private person?”
Well, Nanny Boy says this is unlikely to happen – because remember, there are such great people in government as Shafter – but if it does, we should follow our consciences and bear the consequences of the unlawful law.
But he goes even further. A private person – note, no longer a free person – should “abstain from the actions that he judges unlawful; and he is to undergo the punishment, which is not unlawful for him to bear; for the private judgment of any person concerning a law enacted in political matters, for the public good, does not take away the obligation of that law, nor deserve a dispensation.”
To compensate for the loss of freedom, Locke offers us religion. As long as we are all free to follow our own religion, we should be grateful. So our freedom has been reduced to freedom of religion. But that itself depends on government ‘tolerating’ our religion.
Nanny Boy thus distinguishes between “political society” and “the care of each man’s soul.” And the care of our souls must be “left entirely to every man’s self.”
And “political society is instituted for no other end, but only to secure every man’s possession of the things of his life.”
It is the duty of government, says Nanny Boy, to safeguard men’s lives and their property. “Therefore the [government] cannot take away these worldly things from this man, or party, and give them to that; nor change propriety amongst fellow subjects (no not even by a law), for a cause that has no relation to the end of civil government.”
Then Nanny Boy poses another hypothetical question. What if government does make laws taking away from one person and giving to another? What if government makes laws “to enrich and advance [it’s] followers .. with the spoils of others. What if the [government] believe[s] that [it] has a right to make such laws, and that they are for the public good; and [it’s] subjects believe the contrary? Who shall be judge between them?”
“I answer,” says Nanny Boy, “God alone.”
So there we are! By ‘consenting’ to relinquish only a tiny fraction of our condition of freedom, so as to have a common mechanism to protect that freedom, Nanny Boy leads us into servitude. Our only remedy is to appeal to Heaven, and to God.
This all brings me to ‘rights’. What a convenient and devious little device.
Nanny Boy refers to ‘rights’ as “civil interests.”
These “civil interests” are the governments business, says Nanny Boy, which must be distinguished from “religion”, which is not the government’s business.
Government “neither can nor ought in any manner to be extended to the salvation of souls.” This is reserved for “religious society”, the end of which “is the public worship of God, and by means thereof the acquisition of eternal life.”
But the government even has a part to play here. This is where Nanny Boy throws us the crumbs left over from our freedom. It is the “law of toleration”. The government’s “duty in the business of toleration” is “certainly very considerable.”
So, together with our “civil interests,” the “law of toleration” in respect of religion constitutes the sum total of our ‘rights’. That’s all that is left of our freedom; which is nothing!
But what exactly are these ‘rights’, this combination of our “civil interests” and “law of toleration.”
Man’s ‘rights’, says Nanny Boy, are “life, liberty, health, and indolence of body; and the possession of outward things, such as money, lands, houses, furniture and the like.”
Anyone violating these ‘rights’ is “checked by the fear of punishment.”
That punishment is deprivation of that person’s civic interests. Taking away from him in proportion to what he has taken from another.
According to Nanny Boy, government should be restricted to remedying these violations. That is the end of civil government.
So when Locke says the government cannot take property from one person and give it to another “for a cause which has no relation to the end of civil government,” this is what he means. Civil government should be restricted to restoring to one person what has been taken from him by another. It does not entitle government to take from one person and give to another because government thinks ‘justice’ requires a different distribution of wealth between people; or because government believes that everyone should be ‘entitled’ to health care; or because government thinks people should be ‘entitled’ to an income in their old age; and so on. Those things are specifically excluded, even by Locke. It is no business of government, says Locke, to take from one person and give to another because one person has provided for his health, old age, and so on, and another hasn’t.
On that I agree with Locke. Freedom includes, and necessarily implies, freedom to screw up. It does not mean freedom to screw up, and then require another to pay to sort out the mess.
But let me return to the other element of Nanny Boy’s ‘rights’. That is tolerance.
In short, Nanny Boy says we have a ‘right’ to expect the government to tolerate whatever religion we wish to pursue in order to save our souls.
But there are certain exceptions: “opinions contrary to human society, or those moral rules which are necessary to the preservation of civil society”; religions which pay allegiance to other governments; and atheists.
So it is this hodgepodge of ‘rights’ that today supposedly constitutes our freedom.
But these ‘rights’ are a dismal failure. They do not enhance our freedom, they undermine and diminish it. They are a charter for oppression and tyranny.
They constitute a tyranny of ‘rights’; the enslavement of man; the enshrinement of ignorance and oppression.
They are the enforcement of pity, sympathy, and compassion. They are charters for abuse, open to what Nietzsche called “interpretation”.
And this is all because Locke, and his imitators, started from the wrong end. They sacrificed man’s freedom for ‘rights’. Whereas they should have preserved man’s condition of freedom absolutely, subject only to those principles men freely and universally agree to adopt. Not by majority consent, but by universal consent.
So Locke took the same ‘social contract’ approach as Hobbes – that man is compelled by the State and society to act in the common good. But he also mobilizes God who, by dispensing rewards and punishments in eternity, knocks some further sense into man.
As Schweitzer says, “the essential point of distinction between them is that with Hobbes society alone plies the whip, while with Locke God and society wield it together.”
Neither could see that before we cede any authority to someone else, including government, we all need to agree on the principles to which they must adhere in exercising that authority.
Now I should give credit where credit is due. Locke did establish rudimentary procedural safeguards against abuse of power by government; he just couldn’t come up with any “ideas” when it came to finding substantive safeguards to protect individual freedom. So he gave us the booby prize – ‘rights’. And now we are showered with ‘rights’.
But we do not build a temple of freedom by stacking one right on top of another like bricks; instead, we build ourselves a prison, a prison governed by a tyranny of rights.
Thanks a bunch, Nanny Boy!
Copyright © Joseph BH McMillan 2015 All Rights Reserved

It is Fundamental for the Preservation of Freedom that all Religions, and especially Islam, be Subjected to Scrutiny, Criticism, and even Ridicule – A Response to Mehdi Hasan of the Huffingdon Post UK

Given the volume of condemnation following the massacres in Paris I had decided against making any comment other than short condolences on Twitter and Facebook in which I quoted Winston Churchill: “This is only the beginning of the reckoning. This is only the first sip, the first foretaste of a bitter cup which will be proffered to us year by year unless by a supreme recovery of moral health and martial vigour, we arise again and take our stand for freedom as in the olden time.”
But then I stumbled across an article by the “political director” of the Huffington Post UK, a certain Mehdi Hasan, titled As a Muslim, I’m Fed Up With the Hypocrisy of the Free Speech Fundamentalists. For those with a sufficiently robust digestive system, you can read the article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/mehdi-hasan/charlie-hebdo-free-speech_b_6462584.html
Hasan’s diatribe reflects the farce into which the ‘debate’ has descended. But worse, the patent inability of Western commentators to articulate any proper justification for causing offence to millions of Muslims, other than a ‘right to free speech’, has provided precisely the kind of platform from which the likes of Hasan can spew forth their vile beliefs and opinions.
Which is why, for example, Hasan can feel confident comparing cartoons satirizing Mohammed with “cartoons mocking the Holocaust,” or “caricatures of the 9/11 victims falling from the Twin Towers”. And such ‘comparisons’ have been trotted out time and again on TV by Muslim ‘spokespeople’ who have been flooding the airwaves in Britain and, I suspect, across the world.
The troubling element in such ‘equivalence of victimization’ is that Hasan, and Muslims everywhere (if their ‘spokespeople’ do in fact speak for them), consider the ‘offence’ they feel at their prophet being ridiculed is of the same magnitude as the offence normal people feel when men, women, children, and even babies, are cast into gas chambers; or the ‘offence’ Muslims feel at their prophet being mocked is the same as the horror of those Jewish men, women and boys who had to drag the poisoned corpses of their fellow Jewish men, women, children, and even babies, out of the gas chambers and toss them into burning pits or ovens to be incinerated; or the ‘offence’ Muslims feel at their prophet being portrayed in an unflattering manner in a cartoon is directly comparable to the utter anguish and fear that drove people to throw themselves from the Twin Towers after they had been attacked by people proclaiming the greatness of their god. And for Hasan’s benefit, there were in fact many Muslims, especially in Gaza and the West Bank, who did rejoice at the horror of human beings throwing themselves from The Twin Towers to escape the flames.
But in any event, according to Hasan, it wasn’t the drawings of Mohammed that drove what he calls the “disaffected young men” to massacre the people in Paris. No, it was – yes, you guessed it – the “images of US torture in Iraq in 2004.” Why then, Mr Hasan, did these “disaffected young men” murder innocent cartoonists and Jews in Paris for something done thousands of miles away by others in Iraq? And what then, Mr Hasan, was the motive for the massacre of 2,000 people in Nigeria by the Muslim group Boko Haram at about the same time as the Paris massacres? Or the kidnap of schoolgirls in Nigeria? Or the daily atrocities committed around the world in the name of the Muslim god and his prophet? Or 9/11, which happened years before? And why then, Mr Hasan, did these “disaffected young men” proclaim that they had “avenged the honor of the prophet” after the massacre?
Frankly Mr Hasan, most of us are simply sick of hearing the excuses.
Muslims clearly think that their faith is so much more ‘profound’ that the faith of others that the ‘offence’ they experience by criticism of their prophet, their god, or their religion is of a depth unimaginable by non-Muslims. That in itself is deeply offensive to people of other faiths. But no doubt that is why Muslims see no offence in the Koran claiming that Jews and Christians falsified their Scriptures (Sura 2: 75; 5: 16 and 61:7); or why the Koran ridicules the virgin birth (Sura 4: 171 & 5: 19); or why the Koran proclaims that the belief in the deity of Christ is blasphemy (Sura 5: 19, 75 & 76).
And that brings me to the point of this short article – why scrutiny, criticism, and even ridicule of Islam and Mohammed is not only justified, but required, if human beings are to retain anything resembling freedom.
But let me say first that when I refer to freedom I am not talking about freedom of speech. As any lawyer will tell us, there are restrictions to freedom of speech. But contrary to Hasan’s assertion, those restrictions are not just for the preservation for “law and order”. That would be a licence for authoritarianism, which of course is what Muslims want to impose on the rest of us through Sharia law. The restrictions on freedom of speech are for the preservation of freedom itself by ensuring that those who would seek to impose their authority on others are exposed through scrutiny, criticism, and ridicule if necessary. So those restrictions certainly DO NOT apply to restrain or restrict criticism of any religion, and especially not Islam and Mohammed.
The principle is very simple. To a greater or lesser extent all religions proselytize in order to bring people to their particular faith. Muslims have a duty to attempt to convert people to Islam, and to retain people in the faith. Apostates do not get much sympathy. The objective of Islam is that all human beings should be brought to submit to Allah and Mohammed, and Muslims have a duty to strive to bring that about. Even if we ignore the verses in the Koran that specifically require even force to convert people to Islam, the fact is that it is presented as the true faith to which we should all submit.
In short, Muslims believe that everyone should submit to the authority of their religion. Islam means submission.
Now this is the important point. When someone seeks to persuade (never mind demand under threat) others to submit to the authority of some person, deity, ideology, belief or law, then we are free to evaluate what it is they are offering, and if we find it wanting, then we are free to express our opinions and views about what is on offer, and even ridicule it if we think it deserves ridicule. And if we assess what is on offer to be dangerous to those who would subscribe to it, then we even have a duty to dissuade others from falling into bondage to that ideology. And if that requires offending those who already subscribe to that persuasion, then that is the price they pay for proffering to others that which is found wanting.
Let me make the point more simply for the likes of Hasan who clearly have difficulty recognising simple principles: If you want to sell me a car, I will want to look under the hood. And if I don’t like what I see, I’ll tell you, and anyone else who may be interested in buying your car.
All religions have undergone such scrutiny. In his book “The Quest of the Historical Jesus”, Albert Schweitzer well explained Christianity’s ‘baptism of criticism’ by Reimarus and David Friedrich Strauss when he noted that “It was HATE not so much of the person of Jesus as of the supernatural nimbus with which it was so easy to surround him, and with which he had in fact been surrounded. … And their HATE sharpened their historical insight … [which] … advanced the study of [Christianity] more than all the others put together. BUT FOR THE OFFENCE which they gave, the science of historical theology would not stand where it does today.”
Now why Muslims should think that their religion, their god, and their prophet, should be uniquely exempt from this simple principle of scrutiny, criticism, ridicule, and even hate, is quite curious, especially because what Islam has to offer is hardly unique, and hardly enlightening, as anyone who has ever objectively read the Koran will know.
To quote again from Albert Schweitzer, this time in his excellent book “Civilization and Ethics”, his assessment of Islam was that it shows “itself to be in all points unoriginal and decadent.” Perhaps that would be a good place to initiate a proper and open debate about what Islam is really all about.
But in the meantime, Muslims will simply have to brace themselves for the kind of scrutiny, criticism, ridicule and hate that even the most benign religions can attract in a free society, never mind a religion whose adherents, however few, proclaim to inflict unspeakable horrors on innocent people in the name of their god, and in the cause of defending the honor of their prophet. And if they can’t face the prospect, then there is always the old adage – if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.
Copyright © Joseph BH McMillan All Rights Reserved 2015
This article was first published by the Intellectual Conservative on January 14, 2015.

The Feudalisation of Britain

Although this article addresses the feudalisation of Britain, it is a plague that infects the West as a whole.

The economic cause of this new feudalisation is that giant global corporations are running out of cheap labour in the Third World to sustain their profitability and the disproportionate remuneration packages for their executives.

At the same time, the dishonesty and incompetence of the Western financial industry has plunged Western economies into the worst recession in a century, which has left millions of unemployed and low-paid workers requiring government assistance in order to meet the basic necessities of life.

The West’s financial and corporate elite thus saw an opportunity. The unemployed in the West could be compelled to replace the loss of cheap Third World labour under threat of losing their government assistance. Governments called this scheme ‘austerity’.

A stark admission of this policy came from Britain’s Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Iain Duncan Smith, in an interview on Britain’s Channel 4 Dispatches programme, ‘How the Rich get Richer’, presented by Fraser Nelson of the Spectator magazine (17 November, 2014).

When it was explained to him that people working even 10 hours a day were unable to support themselves and their families, and were less well-off than they would be on welfare, Duncan Smith’s answer was that the Government’s welfare reforms would ensure that people would always be better off working than claiming benefits.

But since the Government does not propose to ensure that global corporations and financial institutions be compelled to pay a living wage, Duncan Smith clearly means that the already inadequate welfare support will be cut to such a level that people will be forced to work under any conditions and for any wage under threat of sanction.

The unemployed are to be harvested as a cash crop under threat of starvation and homelessness.

And while the Government relentlessly presses ahead with its feudalisation reforms, forcing many British people, the unemployed and workers alike, to resort to food banks to feed their children, and charity shops to clothe them, Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer has been pre-occupied with challenging an EU directive from Brussels to cap bankers’ bonuses.

Yet, bankers’ bonuses are only possible because the Government has pumped billions of pounds into the hands of the incompetent and corrupt financial institutions that brought about this economic catastrophe in the first place. The greatest welfare cheque in history was written out to the greatest economic villains in history.

But to deflect criticism from the villains in the story, the Government, supported by a compliant media itself in the power of the new ‘economic royalists’, or beholden to the Government for its funds, set about demonising the victims by portraying them as welfare ‘scroungers’ crippling the economy, and living off ‘hard-working’ taxpayers.

This demonization of the poor, the vulnerable, and the oppressed, has instilled in even otherwise decent people a sense of contempt which has conditioned them to accept that their fellow human beings ‘deserve’  to suffer indignity, abuse, and hardship at the hands of a morally ambiguous Government, and morally vacuous corporations.

But this is not the first time in recent history that free people have faced the threat of the malevolent aspirations of economic tyrants. It is, however, the first time that they have faced them without a leader of vision up to the challenge.

The last time free people faced such a challenge, the American people, at least, had a leader ready and willing to confront the menace. He was Franklin D Roosevelt.

He faced down ‘the privileged princes of these new economic dynasties, thirsting for power.’

He condemned the ‘small group [that] had concentrated into their own hands an almost complete control over other people’s property, other people’s money, other people’s labor — other people’s lives.’

And he recognized that ‘against economic tyranny such as this, the American citizen could appeal only to the organized power of government.’

But today, the organized power of government is in the service of the ‘economic dynasties’. It is imposing on its own people an economic tyranny for the benefit of ‘the privileged princes’.

Government is rendering itself the enemy of the people. And when people are forced into serfdom, then they become free to take whatever steps are necessary to ensure their own survival, and regain their dignity and freedom.

Freedom is that one thing that ‘no man gives up but with life itself.’

So it is not surprising that when Duncan Smith was asked whether the government’s policies towards the poor and oppressed might lead to revolution, he was silent.

However, the fear of revolution may just explain the extensive and intrusive surveillance programmes of Western governments. And it may also explain the multitude of ‘threats’ we are told we need to fear; some real, like Islamic terror, for which our own governments are largely responsible; others contrived, like the idea of an expansionist Russia intent on invading Europe.

As long as the people have enough to fear, then Government and the new economic royalty have less to fear – or so they hope.

Joseph BH McMillan

Quotes by Joseph B.H. McMillan

“Freedom cannot recognize as law the commands and doctrines of other human beings.”

“Freedom and law can only coexist under the auspices of a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker. Anything else renders some masters, and the others slaves.”

“Life is a manifestation of the fundamental laws of physics, and in its highest form, life manifests itself as a human organism with a capacity for moral judgment.”

“The human quest for justice is an expression of the moral content of the laws of physics which manifests itself in the search for a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker.”

“The human capacity for moral judgment speaks of God.”

“The only time in life that we freely and voluntarily assume onerous obligations, not out of fear of punishment, nor the prospect of advantage, but out of unconditional love, is the creation of new human life in our own image ”

“Freedom is defined by obligations, not the absence of obligations.”

“Reason in the service of primitive human instinct, enticed by the prospect of pleasure or the fear of pain, can justify any manner of evil.

“The most compelling testament to the existence of a Supreme law and a Supreme Lawmaker is not to be found in our places of worship, but in the human quest for freedom and justice.”

“There is nothing in life worth trading for freedom, not even life itself.”

“Humility is the highest virtue; feigning humility is the greatest vanity.”

“The most bearable thing about life is the certainty of death; a ‘life-sentence’ and ‘death-sentence’ in one.”

* * * * *

“The arrogance of ignorance is the hallmark of cowards who lack the courage to admit they may be wrong. It is most prominent in politicians who ooze it like pus from an infected wound.”

“He who boasts that he does not suffer fools gladly, is the real the fool.”

‘Civilized’ human beings have become a cancer on the face of the Earth. What went wrong? http://josephbhmcmillan.com/a-legal-proof-for-the-existence-of-god-part-ix-science-in-genesis-chapter-3-adam-and-eve/

‘Civilized’ human beings are the only creatures on Earth who build their own cages to enslave themselves, and each other. http://josephbhmcmillan.com/proof-existence-god/