Καλή Ανάσταση! (On the irrationality of the modern belief in death)

Advertisements

Happy Easter! (“Καλή Ανάσταση” in Greek literally means ‘Happy Resurrection’)

And let not the irrationality of the miracle of resurrection hinder you from believing.

The most important things in life we anyway do not understand.

Our self.

Being.

The cosmos itself.

And yet we are defined by them. And we live by them.

Yes, the resurrection is irrational.

And that is why it is true. (refer to “Resurrection – Illogical, thus True.“)

Because knowing is not about understanding, as Shestov said.

You think you need to believe in order to accept the resurrection.

But it is the other way around…

You already believe so many things and that is why you accept death.

Think again.

Time. Existence. Matter. Identity. Me. You. The notion of change itself.

Who told you these exist?

Do not ask whether Christ was risen.

But instead.

Could you ever die?

PS. Refer to the “What does it take to believe in Death” series of articles at the Blogger Harmonia Philosophica portal for more extensive coverage of the ideas that support our belief in Death. I was much younger when I wrote it and did not wrote so eloquently as now (at least not as much as I believe I do anyway), but my ideas were far more clear and raw. Thus, I still like them. Hope you like them too.

Painting… Praying… Reading…

Advertisements
Photo by Maria Orlova from Pexels

During the European Middle Ages, literacy and written texts were largely the province of religious institutions. Richly illustrated manuscripts were created in monasteries for use by members of religious institutions and by the nobility. Some of these illuminated manuscripts were embellished with luxurious paints and pigments, including gold leaf and ultramarine, a rare and expensive blue pigment made from lapis lazuli stone.

In a study published in Science Advances, an international team of researchers led by the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History and the University of York shed light on the role of women in the creation of such manuscripts with a surprising discovery — the identification of lapis lazuli pigment embedded in the calcified dental plaque of a middle-aged woman buried at a small women’s monastery in Germany around 1100 AD. Their analysis suggests that the woman was likely a painter of richly illuminated religious texts. (1)

Reading. Writing. Praying.

We see the evidence.

To prove that something happened.

We analyze the dental plaque.

To know what this woman did.

And yet, all her efforts are cancelled.

By our lust for proof.

By our eagerness for knowledge.

For the books she helped write, called on for a different kind of knowledge. Knowledge not based on books or proof. Knowledge not based on what you see or hear. But wisdom based on the unseen and the unprovable. For it is that which is the only thing worth seeking in this irrational life governed by the unseen and the unprovable.

That woman did write or supported the writing of holy books. And she did so without the need to prove that to anyone. Her belief was strong enough not to ask for such earthly manifests of recognition. For she recognized the true essence of herself in the humility of a God who came to Earth as a Man and who was recognized by only a few fishermen.

So, the next time you open such a book, remember.

It is not a book written to be read.

But a book which is already read and that is why it was written…

How many scientists are Christians? (Does it matter?)

Advertisements

Statistics of religiousness are a hot topic.

A friend recently initiated a discussion regarding science, religion and the ‘war’ between them. One of the basic elements of the discussion was the number of scientists who are Christians and of course the actual number of christians in the world to-day. The discussion heated up, with many people invoking researches and polls where the number of scientists who are religious or atheists was documented, explained or projected, while taking into accounts multiple criteria and factors.

Yes, the number of religious scientists may be falling.

On the other hand, there could be polls claiming otherwise.

But at the end, does it matter at all?

Should Christianity care about diminishing or increasing numbers of christians?

If we take a good look we will understand that we are looking at the whole topic from the wrong angle. The problem of Christianity to-day is not that it has a dropping number of faithful going to the church. Or an increasing number of people going to the church. The problem is that Christianity (and christians) care about the number of people going to the church…

Nietzsche once said that the first and last Christian died at the cross. Whether this is true or not I do not know, however I do know that I would surely prefer to have Christianity with only one Christian who is a good and humble person, than having billions of followers who argue and debate about whether the numbers of Christians are rising or falling…

And since the discussion is abour religion and science, the same applies to science as well. I would also prefer science with only one proper scientist, open to all possibilities, self-criticizing eveything and with a free spirit, rather than millions of self-proclaimed scientists who are just parroting the same things over and over again because someone else has said them.

In every case, remember: Less is more…

Be aware and be worried when your followers increase too much.

You are doing things suspiciously right…

PS. All the above also apply for atheism and agnosticism as well.

AI. Games. Intelligence. Humans.

Advertisements
Photo by Collis from Pexels

Artificial Intelligence is constantly beating humans in more and more board games. Some years ago, the same team that created that Go-playing bot celebrated something more formidable: an artificial intelligence system that is capable of teaching itself—and winning at—three different games. The AI is one network, but works for multiple games; that generalizability makes it more impressive, as it might also be able to learn other similar games, too.

They call it AlphaZero, and it knows chess, shogi (Japanese chess), and Go. All of these games fall into the category of “full information” or “perfect information” contests – each player can see the entire board and has access to the same info (that is different from games like poker where you do not know what cards an opponent is holding). The network needs to be told the rules of the game first, and after that, it learns by playing games against itself.

The system “is not influenced by how humans traditionally play the game,” says Julian Schrittwieser, a software engineer at DeepMind, which created it.

Since AlphaZero is “more general” than the AI that won at Go, in the sense that it can play multiple games, “it hints that we have a good chance to extend this to even more real-world problems that we might want to tackle later,” Schrittwieser adds. (1)

See?

Even computers can learn.

As long as you teach them. (the rules)

That is how you learnt as well.

Alone.

Wandering in the dark abyss.

Walking in the dead of the night.

You knew the rules.

You just had to deduct the rest.

And you were so afraid.

Because the only rule was that there were no rules.

Because the only law was that you were the law.

Once upon a time, your father told you he loves you.

And that you were free to go.

You decided to leave.

Afraid of yourself.

And you are trying to find rules ever since…

Believing. In God. In You.

Advertisements
Photo by Alexander Krivitskiy from Pexels

An ancient tribe still has a cult centered around a WWII American serviceman. (1)

Amazing. Funny.

And yet.

It is the funniest things which show the way towards the most serious…

We once believed in us. But we needed to stop.

Because we were too appalling.

We had to turn to God. We had to turn to something else.

But God was also too hard to follow.

We hated Him. Because we hated our self.

So, we turned to nothing instead. We called it something. And yet we all knew that it was just another name for the abyss. We are drowning now. Deep inside the cosmos we have created. At some point though, a man will come. A simple man. Dressed like a beggar. We will God into that Man. We will see us into that man. And we will rise. And light will come out of nothingness. To cast the shadows away.

Touch my hand.

Pull me up.

Touch the earth.

It used to be home.

Why do you cry?