14 April 2010


Is Nature obeying some sort of law?

There is a fundamental hypothesis of nature: nature behaves consistently. By this I mean no matter who do a test, when the same test is done and where the same test is done, the result will be the same under the same conditions. Other than that, the nature is chaotic. However, human are clever enough to find order among the chaos.

Science is a systematic ways of removing personal and observational biases, isolates the variables and tries to make a pattern out of the chaos. So far we have been quite successful. Human has figured out many physical laws - models of reality which can explain many observed facts. These physical laws can predict - based on the consistence of the nature. These laws are short-hand for describing a large number of observations. We may use language like nature obeys the law of thermodynamics. The fact is that we have figured out a law (by careful observation of nature) to describe one aspect of nature. A better way should be the law of thermodynamics describes an aspect of nature.

With this in mind, the argument of god as a creator changes. God does not create nature's laws. Nature's laws are human's model of the reality. We may find better model to describe the nature - which happens regularly and is called scientific discovery. The behaviour of nature remains the same. Only our description of nature which has changed.

During such a process, science and god should not be in any conflict. In fact, whether there is a god or not does not matter. That's the position of Einstein. He believes that there may be a god who created the universe and then let the universe runs its own course without further intervention.

The rest of this post is my hypothesis of how religion gets formed.

The starting point is that human has an urge to find pattern and explain things. In the old days when human knew little about how universe behaves, when thunder strikes, when there is earth quarks, when there is ellipse of the sun, people, being less knowledgeable, felt fear and anxiety. Some invented the god concept. God became a knowledge-filler, explaining superficially the natural events. These stories were transmitted orally, exaggerated and mystified. later these stories were hijacked by religion, organisations for the purpose of controlling the common people.

The sad side of this is the dogma propagated by religion. The tragedy is that many believe the story to be literally true. The harm is that many were falsely led to acting out some commands from god and committed atrocities to humanity.

Frankly, we should have grown out of the shackle of religion. Science has shown us how simplicity can lead to complexity. Science has enabled us to send men to moon and back safely. Science has enabled us to radically changed the surface of earth to suit our life style.

Human, as society animals, has basic instinct for co-operation. On the other hand, human brain has also evolved to learn to cheat on others. Human has selfishness. Human are short-sighted. After all, why should not we? In the time of the universe, we are just a blink of eye. Sometimes, we do things which actually harm ourselves without realising it. Among all these weaknesses, we do not need a religion to tell us what is best for ourselves. There is no use for a blind to lead a blind. Religious dogma is old - too old to be useful. New understanding is better as a guide than old exaggerated and mystified stories. Stories, such as creation, have been proven to be completely wrong.

To justify the old stories, new understanding of reality is being condemned, being prosecuted, being denied and being misrepresented. This is not helping anyone except those who have selfish reasons to maintain the status quo. Some are mistakenly led to defend their religion. While they conduct their life logically and evidence-based for every aspect of their life, in matter related religion, all these are thrown out of the water. That is totally unnecessary. Drop the religion baggage. Unit. Let not be divided by religion. Both theists and atheists are human. We are brothers and sisters. Try embrace rationality, apply reason and treasure the luck we have as the most evolved species on this planet earth.

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