was:Monarchs now humanity

Patrick Foley patfoley at csus.edu
Sat Apr 9 20:45:28 EDT 2005


Most social animals, though "natural" act toward social good. And they 
know it. And they know when they are treated unfairly and they know when 
they screw up. Not just when they are going to be punished. So I reject 
the idea that natural man is evil and spiritual man is good. In fact 
Judeo-Christian theology would probably imply that Lucifer, a purely 
spiritual being, is in a state of sin due to a failure of his spirit, 
certainly not his animal nature since he has none. It is our spirits 
mainly  that Hell is intended to punish etc.

Incidentally Socrates showed that God does not set ethical norms, but 
(hopefully) ascribes and adheres to them. For ethical philosophers, 
ethics are not even spiritual or theological! But let me drop the 
theology. It is not my job or expertise.

I am a scientist not a theologian. I do not mean to demean or exalt any 
religion. But I do want to defend evolutionary biologists against claims 
that they live in a morally empty world with no idea about spiritual. We 
try to avoid discussing the spiritual because it is so hard to get 
general, measurable, consensus about the spiritual. We try to stick to 
solveable problems. I would note that the stewardship of our environment 
is potentially a manageable problem. If ecologists and evolutionists 
live in an amoral universe, why is it that we seem to piss everybody off 
with our moralistic attitudes towards the environment?

Yours in spirit,

Ron Gatrelle wrote:

>All: Read at your own risk due to "religious" content.
>----- Original Message -----
>From: "Patrick Foley" <patfoley at csus.edu>
>Subject: Re: was:Monarchs now humanity
>But, perhaps because you are not a secular humanist, a primitive
>animist, a Buddhist or a Taoist, you overstate the case for the
>separation of the natural and spiritual human. I certainly don't want to
>argue with you about your religion. I simply want people to know that
>there are very different perspectives in the very large human religious
>Not very large relative to good, evil and responsibility.
>I am especially amused by the notion that evolutionary
>biologists are at a loss to find "evil" in the world.
>Then I didn't communicate properly.  Exactly to the contrary, those who
>claim no god at all still find plenty of evil in the world an in
>themselves.  It is evolution itself that is amoral and without any values
>of good and evil at all - survival is even a goal, it is just a function.
>Therein is the paradox and the contradiction of the strict evolutionist.
>His intrinsic spirituality contradicts his perception and presentation of a
>strictly natural and evolving Universe void of any Divine causality or even
>Any social creature (and quite a few of them are untutored in the Bible)
>has a very clear sense of what "wrong" is. Haven't you every seen asn
>ashamed dog, or a furious infant?
>There is a difference between spirit and soul.  The dog's _reaction_ is
>based in soulish intimidation not shame.  From previous experience (if
>nothing more than the tone of masters voice) it recognizes it is in
>trouble.  When the master says, "Why, did you eat the cat!" it has no idea
>what's up much less shame.   When the master says, "Is that your poop on
>the carpet?"  It's not thinking, "Yah, I figured this would happen but just
>couldn't resist."
>Fury in infants or beasts has noting to do with "wrong" because (if they
>had been tutored by the Bible) they would know that where there is no
>knowledge of right and wrong (law) there IS NO right and wrong and thus no
>accountability or punishment for it.  There can be discipline for the
>purpose of correcting behavioral patterns, but that is not punishment.
>Because animals are not corrupted by our degree of knowing, their societies
>are much more "sane" than our own.  Once the lead male establishes his
>place it (rarely) goes ahead and just kills its challenger anyway.
>Humanity is a ship of fools and the more educated we get, from the
>theologian (bible thumpers) to scientist (bomb makers) the dumber (and more
>destructive) we seem to get.  Now we have theologians wanting nuclear
>bombs - it doesn't get more insane than that.  Now there are now scientists
>willing to help.
>1) Only the human body is a part of nature. We are responsible for our the
>natural world because we are the only spiritual creature here.
>2) Evolutionarily, the above can not be true as all evolution produces is
>amoral.  Nature is totally devoid of anything religious.
>3) All humans have two natures.  One natural = evil.  One spiritual = good.
>4) The bible teaches all humans are basically spiritual = good.
>    [Utter depravity is not scriptural.  "Sin nature" is a whole different
>5) The spiritual can not "overcome" the imbedded evil without relational
>help from God.
>6) As God (as opposed to religion) is driven farther and farther from the
>human composition, individually and societally, the consequences for the
>natural world will only get worse and worse.  IF a person will not even do
>what is best for their own body why in heaven's name would they do what is
>best for earth, plant and beast.
>7)  The tendency of science to divest itself of God only works against
>conservation which is a cousin of redemption and restoration.


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