Friday, October 23, 2009

Global warming? or nuclear consequences?

I have become aware of the extent of the nuclear testing in the Pacific. 1.7 Hiroshima bombs a day for 12 years! Do we really think that had no effect on the life in the oceans of the world? In unleashing such a catastrophic amount of radiation, heat, and light into the waters do we really think it had no long term impact?

We are experiencing changes in climate here on the west coast called El Nino, or La Nina which is the shifts in the warm water currents in the Pacific Ocean. How much did that testing affect this seasonal flow of the waters? How many animals are no longer in this ocean because of the radiation?

I am awestruck that we are so stupid.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Why Societies Have Religious Components

Here I acknowledge the abuses of the leadership that exist in this genre, but the point here is to look at the components themselves.

1. Religious components explain the unexplainable so one can let the concern over it go.
2. Religious components give guidelines to the new generation in an otherwise chaotic existence.
3. Religious components limit the abuses that willful hearts can do to the innocent or weaker.

The larger unanswerable topics like" Why do I exist? What happens when I die? Is there meaning to anything? etc... are usually part of religious concepts. These questions come up in every one's life and are unanswerable as far as we know , but religion has given us a way out of worrying about it. Mysteries like these are questions that we will not be able to let go but for the permission the answers given in religious contexts give.

In covering the other topics the religious components gives rest to the innocent and weak, courage to the faint of heart, and limitations to the strong. A government may be able to make laws that do these things but it takes religious components to self discipline ones self to obey these laws. There is no law enforcement that can stop a willful heart only that heart can stop itself.

Without these components of religious belief the young are left with their imagination to guide them. At this time when it is possible in our society to do anything it is important to set some of these limits in the young. Not as controls, but as guidelines for behavior in an ever increasing population to stop us from destroying our planet and to protect us from each other.

It is one thing to talk about freedom of speech and quite another thing to allow slander, lies, distortions and misleading. It is one thing to talk about imagination and quite another thing to abandon reality all together and live in that fantasy.

The things the ancients struggled with are the same as the things we face today. They, over time, constructed ways of limiting (self-controlling) themselves, facing the unexplainable and keeping violence from destroying them. Humanity itself has not changed. We need to look very hard at the rejection of religious components in the context of a whole life lived with the unbelievable limitless possibilities and potential destructiveness we see today.

I hope we will look hard at this gift of religious components that have for generations allowed us to evaluate the value of our self-interested desires, to limit our greed, to control our aggressions, and to limit imagination to the things that make life better for all.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Harvest Moon

Today I experienced the Harvest Moon. In times past I had experienced the rising of this moon as the largest in the year. It peeks over the horizon and then fills the sky. It glows gold in the twilight of the day. It rises up to fill the night air with a pure white light. I did not pay much attention to how long it stayed in the sky. I did not realized it would still be filling the landscape with a bright glow at 6 am making it possible to see everything around as clearly as a street light fills the air with light.

With our modern streetlights we create a hazy gold glow every night of the year but before electricity for millions of years this night light in the sky only happened all night in the fall after the equinox, the first full moon after the equal day and night in the fall.

We are so used to having light at night that we don't even notice it, but once a year our ancestors all over the world could stay up all night with the moon lighting their world for three days! It is no wonder that they had a special celebration of this majestic moon. What a treat.