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Friday, March 31, 2006

Notes on the back of a pizza box

From the Big Bang (or any other starting point you wish to imagine), you are the results of a chain of a zillion events, and here you are, with that backpack of ‘all time’ on your back, every breath you take is that which moves you into the ever present. And now what?

Can you imagine jogging on a road paved with gold, not only would it be hard on the feet, but very cold.

Check eBay for bid on Jimmy Durante "September Song" LP.

I think the secret for an atheist to live a seemingly fulfilling life is to keep as busy and comfortable as possible. I can see that the life of science would be an ideal environment for this, because one could fill one’s life as a materialistic reductionalist, contently probing the ‘what, when, and how’ questions of the universe, and forever excluding or simply ignoring the ‘why’ questions. Alas, theologians find themselves with the ‘why’ question on their plate, and wrestle with it, even when ‘what/when/how’ folks point their collective fingers and laugh at the sorry sight. But, what can I say, free will made us do it.

To acknowledge one will never know the unknown does not negate the innate quest-seeking urge that one finds oneself harboring. I know that for me it would be an impossible quest to climb Mr. Everest, yet the effort and all that one would experience trekking up the foothills of that mount would be of great value to me. Yet also, to sit where one finds oneself and to meditate upon one’s present, would also be of great value to me.

Bro. Bartleby

“Men go abroad to wonder at the heights of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of the rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motions of the stars, and they pass by themselves without wondering.”
—Augustine of Hippo (354-430 AD)

3 comments:

Moof said...

Brother Bartleby, I'm wondering if you've been reading some of my journal entries lately ... eerily on topic.

I can see that you've gone through all of the napkins, and now you're on to the pizza box ... would you like me to send you a care package of real paper? Just holler ... :o)

chuko said...

Hey Brother Bartleby. Some of us atheist science folks see the search for the where, what, and how as the surest path to discovering more of the why.

Lifewish said...

I'd say that in many ways atheism is pretty much synonymous with belief that there is no ultimate "why" to the universe, so this is a bit of a tautology.

The interesting part is attempting to build a worldview on that assumption. And what I've discovered is that it doesn't really matter if there's a why. The wild flower is just as beautiful as its cultivated kin, and the eyes that see it are all the more awesome for being the product of simple forces of nature.

Incidentally, I've gotta say I'm slightly amused by the idea that atheists ask fewer "why" questions than religious folk. I went to an evangelical Christian youth club for about 7 years and consistently spent substantially more time discussing theological issues with the leaders than any of the believers there. This is consistent with my experience of other atheists and religious folk.