September 30, 2015
I’ve just chanced upon a more complete (and higher resolution) video of the Modi-Zuckerberg incident that I’d commented upon yesterday.
That comment was based on an excerpt found circulating on FB. Upon review of the more complete video, I don’t think Modi can be faulted on the cultural issue I’d commented on.
Hence I’m making that post private, and also removing the copy of the 15 second video that I’d uploaded on my youtube account for my record.
When the facts change I must do the right thing, and change my mind.
[This does not change any of the other facts re: Modi that I’ve adversely commented on.]
September 27, 2015
I despise religions, all of which are not only man-made (having nothing whatsoever to do with God), but which generally crush the honest, innocent man and actively take the side of the powerful, the corrupt and the murderers.
From the Christian crusades to the Islamic hordes that butchered innocents throughout history (and continue to do so today), to the RSS – the Hindu terrorists – there is little good that can be attributed to religion. Their overall record (barring a few exceptions) is overwhelmingly negative.
This also means that religions have nothing whatsoever to do with morality, being hubcentres of the most immoral forces that mankind has ever created. Religious leaders are – in most cases – the worst offenders of our widely shared conceptions of morality. Excepting a few cases, there is a very strong correlation between religiosity and evil.
The need to end religion
We must therefore hasten to bring religion to an end. That is the first step towards peace on earth.
Apart from other writings and activities in this regard, I have established this page on Facebook: End Religion, Bring Peace. Do join the page.
The rejection of religion is not the same as the rejection of God
If religion is bad, surely God does not exist? No. It is not quite that simple. The rejection of religion does not amount to the rejection of God.
We must start with a basic and obvious fact. We know this for sure: that the world exists.
We know that there is an enormous amount of energy in this universe. (In addition, there are hypotheses about an infinity of other universes, e.g. the multiverse hypothesis).
Even if we just focus on the current universe, we have two explanations for its existence:
- It was created by God
- It was always there (or came into existence on its own – same thing, for our current purpose).
Only one of these two hypotheses is right.
Theists are clear: God made it. They can’t prove God, but IF God exists, then they can at least partially explain the existence of this universe (of course, they’ll then have to show who created God – or get God to tell us clearly why He exists in the first place).
Believers have proposed many types of God (as I’ve discussed here). These, however, remain hypotheses. No one has ever provided any robust, scientific proof. Yes, all sorts of claims are made by believers (e.g. this – by a “scientist”) but there is no scientific proof.
So there is no proof of God (or at least of a type of God whose existence we can prove). In science, we call claims without proof, hypotheses, no more. Speculation.
So does this prove that there is no God and that atheists are right? Not really.
Atheists don’t need to disprove the existence of God but they do need to prove their theory of the universe. Since atheists assert that God does not exist, they equivalently assert that the universe must have always existed or came into existence on its own. (Btw, this was also Buddha’s theory of existence). Atheism is a POSITIVE assertion (a rather strong one) – about the universe, about existence.
So they need to not just prove that energy was always there but also show why it was always there. It is crucial to prove why there is something and not nothing.
As far as I know, we are struggling to explain dark matter and dark energy – which comprise 95 per cent of our universe. We can’t see them but we know they exist. So we can’t even explain the current universe, leave alone explain how it came into being, or what was there before it. Any string theory explanations should be rejected, since there are tens of string theories, and NONE has any way of being proven empirically.
The level of proof we need:
The full proof of God will need to be quite comprehensive (I’ve got 100s of questions that will need to be addressed). Similarly, the full proof of atheism will need to be quite comprehensive (similarly, there are 100s of questions to be addressed).
Today, we can’t make up our mind either way. Science has not yet proven God or the spontaneous emergence of the universe. We just don’t know which of these two hypotheses is right.
Under the circumstances, I reject ANY assertion one way or other, and treat both as possibilities. One of them is right. Which one is right I don’t yet know.
Even reputed “scientists” are mired in confusion. Einstein asserts “I am not an Atheist” – and offers a mystic (rather pantheistic/ deistic) view of the world. John D. Barrow asserts (at great length, and with a wide variety of “scientific” proofs), The Anthropic Cosmological Principle. Hawking asserts there is no God. So does Richard Dawkins.
But all these are assertions without proof. Such assertions are MEANINGLESS, unless buttressed with rock-solid evidence.
To the extent they make such assertions, all these people: Einstein, Barrow, Francis Collins, Hawking, Dawkins and many others like them, are NOT scientists.
Science does not have anything both ways. There is only ONE truth. Always, and without exception.
Agnosticism the only valid scientific position today
I need PROOFS. Rock solid proofs.
This issue cannot be settled through arguments on Facebook or on this blog. It will only be settled through scientific journals with 100 per cent clear evidence and proofs, either way.
Till the whole of the scientific community (including me) has firmly come to a single view – after reviewing all the relevant evidence, I prefer to sit on the fence.
That’s the only tenable scientific position on this subject, today.
Charles Darwin and many other genuine scientists veered towards this position. I question the critical thinking capacity of anyone who asserts otherwise – today.
I don’t care if your name is Einstein or Hawking. You are NOT a scientist, in my view, to the extent you make assertions not supported by rock solid proof.
KEYWORDS (to help me search this post later, in a hurry)
I am an agnostic. I reject theism. I reject atheism.
September 26, 2015
Some time ago, when I had first read Bastiat’s The Law, I formed the view that he was an extremist libertarian, particularly given his reference to progressive taxation as “legal plunder”.
“legal plunder can be committed in an infinite number of ways. Thus we have an infinite number of plans for organizing it: tariffs, protection, benefits, subsidies, encouragements, progressive taxation, public schools, guaranteed jobs, guaranteed profits, minimum wages, a right to relief, a right to the tools of labor, free credit, and so on, and so on.” [The Law]
(Of course, I agree to most things cited by Bastiat – it is only the taxation issue I’m considering here).
But in his Sophisms, he says: “We don’t refuse taxes to the Government“.
I think if Bastiat had lived long enough to elaborate his position, he might have been similar to Hayek’s flat tax oriented position (and which I broadly support, with a modest level of progressivity).
It seems to me now that since he doesn’t refuse taxes, we must consider him a classical liberal, not libertarian anarchist.
September 26, 2015
This post should be widely circulated across the length and breadth of India. Let the fools who govern India (and who vote for the fools who govern India in the manner it is currently governed), learn some BASIC truths:
Businesses automatically move when there is demand and profit to be made. Nobody invited FB,Google or Uber to come to India. They came automatically. Businesses will come if a proper environment is there. Modi should focus on governance of India. Make India a well governed country and businesses will come. Travelling and giving foolish speeches will not get businesses to invest.
Let every fool in India understand the basics about the role of government: not to “attract” businesses, but to create the environment for honest competition.