New Studies in Finite Monotheism Updated: My latest Critical Comments

Dr. Craig to the class: “Let us make the sign of the lawn mower, brethren: for here we mow down religion.”

And now, back to my philosophical quest.

Strangely (at first), nature seems to come with a kind of built-in duality, both at the most basic levels and at the “macroscopic,” or large-scale levels of magnitude.  One of our galaxies bears the descriptor of a “double torus,” while at the lowest levels, DNA looks just as dualistic with its “double helix,” or “symmetrical upward-winding staircase” of proteins that make up people and animals.  A “torus” names a kind of cylinder that forms a circle, like a slinky uncoiled, whose ends one forces together in a ring. A double torus, would look like one of the ringed coils atop of another.

Many of our galaxies form (or will form in the future — contents are still settling) a kind of torus shape. Some have estimated that around 51 or so of our (so far) 191 (Doubtless more will attend our future) galaxies.  My study of the persistent “dualities” of the natural world (at the foundational level, and the largest-scale) have led me to form some new ideas I am now exploring.

First, the “highest reasonable” number, one with any number higher having no reference or practical value in the real world, combines the numbers 8 (DNA) and 10 (your fingers/ toes), the two most basic and profitable.  That number is one “octillion.”   Bases 8 and 10 form the “most natural” numbers of greatest use and profit. Any higher number waxes utterly irrelevant.  This is a billion (x) billion (x) billion.

Second, I have derived a plausible account of the cosmos.  “God is not large,” said Blaise Pascal,” He is but a point, that moves infinitely fast, so that He is everywhere at once.”  I believe that God, being finite, was originally 2 supreme beings. To explain the way the real world actually situates and operates, one (I will argue) will need monotheism and duality.  This also explain both love, as having an origin in God (the two), and wisdom and understanding (the light of nature) as the result of love.  Why two?

  1.   This seems required by the nature of love, which requires both a subject (lover) and an object (beloved).  It has to be both given and received.
  2. Ockham’s razor — or what we call the principle of economy — say that what is unnecessary we must “shave off,” which leaves necessity as the primary “cause” of life, and also the cause of 2 supreme beings, since love requires it.
  3. So does wisdom.  It is necessarily INTER-personal, or social.  Very little wisdom obtains in isolation from society.  One of its (wisdom’s) characteristics shows itself by its influence on others and its profitability (which only shows up in economies or markets — social constructions).

With no material world yet in existence, they could both still learn at a blistering pace — super (hyper) quickly — but only by their imaginations.  They could have, after determining the nature of logic and thought, worked through all possible worlds, and their total sets of implicates.  As each worked (together with the other) to narrow down the possibilities, they drew closer and closer to a state of “pure mind,” truly and totally complete accuracy.  This brought them progressively together.  When they converged upon the “right answer,” this universe, they collapsed into one unity, in a sudden moment of great insight, and begat all things.

The material world was thus created from the divine love of wisdom and understanding.  This resulted in the wisdom of love and its unity.

Their divine, rational imagination created the universe, when these two points “Fused.”   Fusion created all things, and this unified, super-intelligent (and ultra-fast) “point,” catalyzed, by their combined energies (and intelligences), causing what we now call the Big Bang — a matter-energy surge extreme.

This was an absolute leap forward in the progress of all.  And this implied further the progress of creation — of stars, solar systems, formation of galaxies, creation of oceanic life (eventually) and of animal life.

Once the creation-event exploded into existence, God (the One, or the Two united) pervaded the whole of it, and expanded (and continues to expand) with it, growing in his knowledge and wisdom along with its expansion.  One might call this “transcendent duo-panentheism.”  But it also remain a form of “finite monotheism.”

Here, the creation of humans amounted to an invitation to join His family.  It was an act of love, and a call to pursue the forever-wisdom-quest — along with God. The most interesting question I am pursuing at this point is this:  How planned, or else (somewhat) spontaneous and unplanned, was the creation event?  If two supreme Persons in fact merged, the act might simply have been one of love more than any design, and it may have cause an unexpected birth — a permanent fusion of two deities (like male and female) into One at the same moment the cosmos burst forth.  This may be a bit too anthropomorphic, but it seems to me that it has far better explanatory power than the other option here specified.

On this account, God was born with the universe, and grows with it (as it expands and matures), though He transcended it earlier  — but only in more primitive, dual form.  Something like this was affirmed by Dr. Einstein — namely the idea that God was born with the cosmos.

This account displays before creation the following principles of nature’s light:

  1. The principle of economy
  2. The principle of reflexive judgment (symmetry)
  3. The principle of progress
  4. The principle of charity
  5. The principle of priority (wisdom first, then love)
  6. The principle of uniformity  (The TWO had to share some traits in common, like necessity and life)

This would indicate that these principles represent (natural) traits of both the TWO, and consequently (post-creation) the One.

In any case, I continue my quest for the GU (meta) T, as an account that explains the real world, its origin, and Creator, and the best one might make of it from what is known to philosophy, history and science, and the other disciplines of the academy.  I shall post those details here if Providence permits.

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2000 Years Later, And They Still Haven’t Noticed (The Failed Messiah Challenge)

According to Mark, Jesus went throughout Galilee, healing everyone and casting out demons in their synagogues.  Healing keeps coming up, again and again, and in John these “miracles” of healing form proof that he is the Messiah — “If you do not believe my testimony, at least you should believe the works that I do” (John 5).

This man was supposed to be a prophet with excellent (perfect) foreknowledge — meaning he knew the important future.  Here is what this healing “Messiah” forgot to do:

  1.  He did not tell anyone about germ theory (1870+), or that by washing their hands with soap (they had hyssop) and water 3 times daily, they could live a whole lot longer.  In fact, if everyone in his day had done this, we could have saved hundreds of millions of lives and skipped the middle ages. Oops.
  2. Then there is the wonder of penicillin.  Not one word from our prophetic “Messiah” about this or any other antibiotic, which again, by themselves could have omitted the middle ages, saving millions of lives.  All that healing going on, and not one word about antibiotics, or even good nutrition.
  3. He said nothing about aloe vera, or any other herbals, now known to have excellent effects for helping to treat all kinds of problems.  Many of these were available in his locale and time period.
  4. He told them nothing about the importance of different vitamins, or gave any counsel that was good for their health.
  5. The steam engine was invented in 62 by Hero of Alexandria.  It ran the industrial revolution and still provides much of the power for our cooking, cleaning and hospitals.  Jesus knew nothing about it, and said not one word in favor of it, or of electricity that could make the lives of billions far, far better.

The bottom line here is that, given his supposed “prophetic foreknowledge” — good knowledge of the future, and given his demonstrated desire to heal (Acc. to John to prove he was the Messiah), Jesus was an utter failure as a healer, foreknower (prophet), and as a Messiah.  He was quite possibly the WORST Messiah he could have been, a super-negligent, criminally apathetic, and quite possibly the most idiotic — Messiah we have ever heard of.

Any person with even the slightest inclination to help people, who had his foreknowledge, would have been a better Messiah.  Jesus that guy was a failure.  Just like his jihad followers.  Amen.

The Ideal Language: What Does It Look Like?

For a language to represent what is ideal, it would have to aim to fulfill the human design.  This means it will promote the production and distribution of our primary design objectives:  Wisdom, life, love, value, beauty, success, and joy.  It will also have to pass muster with the principles of the light of nature used as a filter.

Then we would have to remove from it all non-ideal words, word-parts and the like — this would include all violence language and meat-eating language, as well as criminal language — legal documents providing the exception to the rule since necessity operates here where it does not do so elsewhere. The same would hold true for medical literature.  It would also remove all non-referential language since the ideal tongue will repr. the language of truth.  This means it must omit all religious language.

Since the greek culture is the only one ever to pursue wisdom as of a top priority — inventing philosophy, the pursuit of wisdom — and because of its unique abilities of inventing geometry and trigonometery, as well as the steam engine (which later ran the industrial revolution), we should necessarily begin with the Greek alphabet and language.  Moreover, the Greek adopted the alphabet of the Phoenicians, a seafaring people who ate mostly fishes for meat (not cows or pigs), and that by necessity, since they went as traveling merchants for long periods at sea.

However, as I have shown, the letters used must have no curves, but straight lines only for greater clarity, meaning the capital B, will have to undergo a change or two.  Most other capitals (uncials) have no curves in Greek. The upsilon (U) can be squared easily as the base to remove its curve.  We should simply toss out the minuscules (lower case letters) as redundant and extremely curved.  Ockham’s razor would shave these off.  We can render the capitals a bit smaller since they do not have to wax large to foster clarity.  This allows more letters and words per page.

No letter part should “cut in half” (bisect) any other since this will likely have the effect of creating socio-cultural effects pitting one aspect of cultural development against another (causing a kind of “drag” on profitablility).

We should consider, once we have removed from it all violence-speak, false references, and other faulty language, the use of the Latin vocabulary, translated back into Greek by the skilled use of prefixes, roots, and suffixes, used to create a Greek dynamic equivalent for words we do not have in our modified, Hellenistic vocabulary, offered by the highly regular (other) classical tongue.  This would the new Greek all the strengths of both classical languages (the Renaissance kept both), while having none of the weaknesses or faults of either — and all in Greek at the end of the matter.

What else can we say about the ideal language?  It will have numerous synonyms for the terminology associated with Wisdom [Discretion, understanding, discernment, etc], life [prolific, flourishing, growing, etc] love [kindness, tenderness, compassion, etc], value [profit, profitable, earned, worth, prized, etc], beauty, joy, progress, etc, including a significant number of verbs that indicate the acquiring, producing, managing and distributing of these features of human experience.

Some of the principles of the light of nature to use in sorting which words, word-parts and writing rules to employ in building the ideal tongue are these:

  1. Reflexive judgment
  2. Charity
  3. Economy or necessity
  4. Uniformity
  5. Prefer concrete (empirical) to abstract language
  6. Prefer graphic verbs to verbs of “being” (omit as redundant, save “to exist”)
  7. Omit the infinitive, as non-referential, and unnecessary
  8. Prefer the active voice to the passive (omit passive as unnecessary)
  9. Prefer the sense of technical terms when necessary (these are less culturally-conditioned because the hoi polloi do not use them often — thus they display less “linguistic drift” over time too), but try to find a way to express these in the “ordinary tongue” — by dynamic equivalence.
  10. The question of a DNA pattern to the ideal human language remains.  I am persuaded that “the DNA patterns used to create people represent a kind of language of life.  I intend to continue my investigation of these to determine just which features we ought to adopt and adapt to the ideal language, which should be a language of life, and thus will share some similarities with DNA patterns. Should ideal words have only 2 syllables, else 4, or 6 or 8?  This would create a fascinating kind of uniformity to writing.

There also remains another question: how many, and which, features of formal language, should we adopt and adapt to the ideal language?  This also bears further exploring.  As an example, we might wonder if it is possible or desirable to add a feature to this language from math, say one that allows the final syllable to show as a number, or else to circumscribe a letter with a number — written as a pentagon for “five, ” or a circumscribing square for a “four,” if we want to expand the number of letters in the alpha without adding new letters.

Suppose we keep the Greek 24 letters, but we want a 64 letter alphabet (following DNA), we could simply as the second set of 24 letters by writing them out just as in the first set, but with a line over the top to indicate the second set, giving us 48 letters to work with, and so on.

Then we move onto another fascinating question — what happens when we rewrite time and the calendar using the (even #’s only) base 8 math of the world of DNA?  This also needs exploring as an important part of the question about the ideal way of timekeeping with the ideal math of the ideal language.

I shall more about this topic when convenient.

 

 

 

Why God Has Not Spoken — Yet

Some day I do in fact expect what has been called in a similar context, “First Contact.”  What we have been given so far (What the light of nature teaches) amounts to some interesting facts, especially when we fill out their implicates with a few interesting facts and propositions of our own to provide a better way of understanding nature’s light, as it comes to bear on the topic of God speaking.

First of all, we deny that God did any speaking in the creative acts necessary to get us here in the first place, since 1. There was no audience  2. He did not need to speak to create (an act of divine volition suffices), so that Ockham’s razor bids us to shave off this part of the explanation of the creation event.

Second, our blessed and most wise Creator gave us as “general revelation” what was nonverbal, proving He is able quite well to convey to us what we need WITHOUT WORDS.  Since we still have that light and wisdom from nature, and God’s plan cannot be thwarted, we still do not need divine speech.

The third fact, is, however, likely to shove something of a stick into the wheels of the progress of this argument.  God has given language and writing systems to us to make us wiser.  Our “speaking platforms” (language and writing systems) make us far, FAR wiser than we were without them.  This means that we will continue to progress in our ability to grow more diligently and flourish more brilliantly in the wisdom of nature’s light in the future.

This suggests, that, combined with the law of progress in the light of nature, that God intends to speak to us in the future, but that we must first progress much more “fluently” in the wisdom of nature.  We are not yet wise enough.

Recall the principle from the wisdom traditions we already know: “Do not speak to a foolish man, for you will not find knowledge on his lips.”  Would this prevent God from choosing to speak to us?  “The secret of the Lord is with the just.” And again, “Do not give to the dogs what is holy, neither cast your pearls to the pigs.”

Here are a few other points to consider in pondering this question.  God only gives his very best.  This means that if He were to speak to us, He would need to await our construction a language thoroughly and accurately constructed upon the principles of the wisdom of the light of nature — else He could not give us His very best in a badly faulty tongue.

Inference: God is waiting.   He intends to speak to a council of our very wisest when, and only when, we have created the nearly perfect language, having founded it carefully and accurately upon the principles of nature he has given us as wisdom.  The Wise language – the tongue of “pure monotheism,” is the only one He speaks (the very best), and we do not yet have it.

Inference: We should get busy about our Father’s business.  It would appear that this business includes diligent and faithful (did I mention critical) studies in the philosophy of language in light of what we know about ideal language and pure (limited) monotheism.

First contact may not be too far off.  Just remember — WE are the aliens.

And now for a brief postscript.  If God speaks (verbally, as opposed to the nonverbal LON), He will speak only in the ideal language, that language constructed accurately and solely upon the principles of the light of nature.   By learning that the myth of the infinite God teaches that we have been praying all these years to a wantonly falsely-portrayed God, we should rightly think that only in this generation are we beginning to love God aright.

It should astonish us that it has taken this long just to learn to BEGIN to love our Creator rightly.  We have been reckless and foolish in our approach to Him, but no longer.   Now we can begin to work together to construct just that most ideal language, that when we have it promises to reshape our minds and our whole person(s), making us suitable (over time) to God’s true friendship/ fellowship for the first time.

The quest for wisdom necessarily, eventually, leads one into God’s presence.  But we must first learn to speak his language.  And then we must rehearse our speech in that tongue carefully in advance, practicing it in our discourse for some time before one with another that we may prove proficient in it when talking to God, first in prayer. Eventually, when He wants — He will answer.

I would expect that when we first ask Him for wisdom in His native tongue, that we shall have all we desire and more.  Wisdom, and the fellowship and favor of the Most Wise, is the prize.

How Did We Get It So Badly Wrong for All These Years? Finite V. Infinite

Someone has to be holding this cosmos together, or the WHOLE place would turn into New Jersey.  But here is a thought worthy of consideration. What would the human consequences be for our conceptual errors regarding the most important VIP in the universe?

First, it is well to recall that God judges reflexively.  Two, Greater to the lesser, if we judge God to be his opposite (Infinite, instead of finite), we should expect that He would judge the creation in like manner as its opposite.  This would have people and places over time transforming into their opposites, or complements.  This would make the world seem “upside down and backwards.”

Because finite-wisdom monotheism represents a first in human history, this gives today’s generation a unique opportunity to “reset the (historically-inverted) applecart” that seems to have everything “turned upside down.”

Another worthwhile consideration aims at reminding us that on the practical level, a finite God of so extraordinary wisdom and power as the One that created and sustains this universe — as vast and impressive as it is — would not differ much in our experience from what we might think of as an “infinite God” — whatever that might mean.   The practical difference is negligible in terms of an explanation needed to account  for the cosmos, its mysteries, and its wisdom.

In principle, the infinite and finite diverge to an incomprehensible degree.  But in practice, the Cosmic creator-sustainer, as our teacher and king, differs very little from what we thought of as his (ancient) counterpart.  I plan to write, and have much more to say, on this topic later.

New Adventures in Reseearch: Is God Infinite, or Else Finite

In 1897, Charles Hartshorne was born in Kittaning, PA, just a mile or so short of Wyomissing.  After a professorship at the University of Chicago, he pioneered — somewhat following A.N. Whitehead — a new understanding of God as a kind of divide between his actual and potential attributes, where according to the potential, He remains infinite, but according to the actual, just the complement — he remains finite in all is attributes. The key word was “Process.”

Panentheism, or “process theology,” as his views (collectively) came to be called, first pioneered in human history an attempt to maintain a real (pure) MONOtheism with the notion of a finite deity.  In all the ancient pantheons (Sumerian, Egyptian, Roman), the gods were many, and had a very bad habit of doing the kinds of things that today would drive up insurance rates with a vengeance.  Zeus could be especially naughty.

The efforts of Hartshorne (and then of John Cobb) were far more serious than the storytelling episodes of Jason and the Argonauts — my parody of the ancient (somewhat silly and all-too-human) deities of the ancients.  Only the Hebrews made a serious attempt at monotheism, but ended up quite implausibly maintaining that their nomadic and tribal deity was in fact THE INFINITE Creator of all — together with his unique plan of a kosher diet for everyone — eatest thou no crickets.

The combination of finite and monotheism (non-anthropomorphic) represented by H. and Cobb genuinely represents to my mind a human first.  And they were largely correct, on my view, with some modifications.

Why finite monotheism?  I shall begin my answer with the lesson of the circle.  In math, the circle is said to exhibit a unique geometric form — it can either be said to possess zero sides, or else and infinite number of sides.  Let us assume the latter for the sake of argument.  Here, the number of sides, being infinite, will yield the same number of sides for an arc that makes up exactly one half the circle; again, the same results obtain for a sample of the arc that makes up one half the semicircle (arc), meaning a one-quarter circle arc.

In each case, the number of sides remains infinite, even down to a single 1/100 of an inch of the circles circumference.  Thus, a certain equivalence (congruence) has to obtain between the disparate lengths of the circle.  This, I believe, suffices to show THE IMPOSSIBILITY of the infinite.

Many other examples obtain that accomplish the same, from Zeno’s paradox, to the Higgs boson (the “point” in geometry), to the argument from virtue. Philosophers and theologians of “theology proper,” as it was dubbed in old time — a critical study where God and His nature are the primary subjects of scrutiny — often regard God as the supreme representation of virtue and wisdom, in much the way that Plato held to a “highest form.”

The problem for the “infinite” salesmen remains that such virtues as wisdom, discretion, justice, kindness, and the like — and the principles of the light of nature that construct these — all ride on the credibility established by their abilities to set and require strategic LIMITS.  No limits, no justice — just nihilism and anarchy.

Knowledge and education proceed in the same manner: the limits set by the rules, laws, theorems, ratios, principles, axioms, formulas, and the like, in history, economics and the sciences  — do in fact set just those limits necessary (wisely) to impose order to bring order out of chaos, manage our environment, add value to real estate, create jobs, invest well, learn more accurately why things work as they do, or to improve technology.

The whole project of wisdom, knowledge and learning rides on setting limits, abiding by limits, imposing limits and studying those limits, more carefully to apply them, and to understand them more accurately (better).

Bottom line?  God is wisdom and wisdom necessarily and inherently rides on limits.  Therefore, God is limited just as wisdom, justice and mercy are limited.  To “unlimit” them in lobbying for the infinite is to destroy them in favor of nihilism and anarchy, which know no limits, and offer no standards or criteria.  Hartshorne and Cobb were right about the divine “actuality,” but not about his potential.  Both remain finite, but not because God suffers from some sort of deficiency: rather, this is so because it can be no other way.  The concept of the infinite suffers from the internal and fatal conflicts of conceptual errors more broadly.  Nothing ever has been or can be infinite.  This is just that things really are.  The concept of the infinite has no real referent, just like “zero.”

God, it turns out, is not the MAXIMAL God of Christianity, but the OPTIMAL God of creation and wisdom, limits and all.  Those who favor pure monotheism, the finite-Wisdom monotheist, will glory in those limits. These make wisdom what it is.

God Language, Naming and the Problem of Polytheism

Assigning a name to a person assumes that others of the same kind exist, making it necessary to distinguish the one from the others.  The first two humans did not need names until many others came along.  This means that assigning a name to God implies polytheism, the chief error of the bible.

The only missing premiss here stems from the principle of economy, or Ockhams razor — if you do not need one, assign no name to the Person in question. Sophic Creationists readily accept this principle and scientists often a employ it.  Thus we will need to describe our beloved and all-wise Creator in terms of His great and virtuous deeds, wisdom, and behaviors or habits and traits — without falsely assigning to Him a name, as though the homeric deities exist alongside Him.

I plan to blog at greater length on this topic as opportunity affords.