Dear Bruno,

I can not agree with you. neither with anyone that contemplate a
minimalistic  extract of the ideas of the past from the point of view and
the knowledge (and ignorance) of the present. Natural theology and the
conquest of nature has been ever a part of Christianity not because that
was more "rational", -in fact, it is not. I will explain shortly why the
conques of nature was possible only under  the faith in the
Christian doctrine of a God that made the world for us, that love us and
that sacrificed its son for us.

Reason need a faith to acquire knowledge: faith in the power of reason over
the unknown. that is, that the unknown is reasonable. But the reasonable
about the unknown is the Islamic one:  if you wake-up in the world with no
knowledge and where evil things happens, then you suppose that you was put
there by an omnipotent arbitrary One that make whathever it pleases and do
not care for you.  then your natural response is to stay in your cave, to
sacrifice and submit everithing to obey that incomprehensible God in order
to apaciguate it.

It is the idea of a loving god that made the world for us and the
definitive demostration of sacrifice  of his son for us, the principle that
permitted the conquest of nature in material and intelectual terms, and the
aspiration to the knowledge of God possible. No longer we need humans
sacrifices to appease the gods, because God was Good, He did not administer
the world as a wicked place, we read their natural revelation in the laws
of nature. Tha´ts why our ancestors conquered the world and the science of
nature. Otherwise, we would stay sacrificing us for the glory
of Pharaohs-gods, Olympian gods or wathever. One has to question what are
the goods of today that we are sacrificing to.

So wat gave our ancestors the faith in the unreasonable power of reason was
a crazy one: The idea of a creator that love us. For the greeks, reason was
a introspective inquire, or a occupation of a few people. No enlightened
greek of egyptian or chinesse would unfold the creativity of their
people, compulsively repeating the rites and customs of their ancestors.
The confidence in the reign of man over nature was only possible with the
relief from the wrath of gods with the ultimate demonstration of God love,
the ultimate sacrifice of God for us.

But given that we have been so successful  we have relieved God from his
role as loving protector under a syndrome of excess of confidence. The
judeo-christian tradition has ever warned about that.  Reason operates with
limited resources and with limited knowledge, while nature has a pervasive
intelligence and unlimited resources in their processes, called life. We
are unable to know it entirely. We don´t even know how economy works, How
we can understand the future of the whole society, or the behaviour of a
single man?. We can not engineer but in a limited place and time.  But the
contemporary sin is precisely this: the overconfidence in reason, and
overconfident engineering, that is, to get rid of God and the desire to be

Errare humanum est. We commit errors. But this insane contempt of the past,
-and this search for the errors of the past as causes of the evil of the
present- is the symptom of the errors of the present. The current situation
can not be a consequence of something that happened centuries ago, if only
because whatever was proposed at that time was rejected.

The  though of contemporary age is not  a continuation of the
judeo-christian heritage, but a wild rebellion against it.

This analysis of Spengler explain the idea of divine love and sacrifice as
the origin of science

2013/1/25 Bruno Marchal <>

> On 24 Jan 2013, at 17:33, Richard Ruquist wrote:
>  This is exactly what happened to Islam in the 1300s.
>> After the fundamentalists took over, rationality was dispensed with,
>> and centuries of scientific progress were deemed sufficient for Islam
>> for all time. And so it seems that Islam went from world leadership in
>> science to where it is today.
>> Fortunately the same did not happen to the Christians. But based on
>> John's comments, I wonder why not.
> I would say it did, but much earlier, in 523 after JC.
> I wrote in another forum:
>  Theology is born as a science, but in 523 after JC, we have separated the
> spiritual from the rational, and we are still paying the big price.
> In the human science we act irrationally, as human history illustrates
> sadly.
> Yet, the rational is the genuine path of the spiritual, and the religions
> which deny this can only be based on bad faith, or special interests.
> I agree with Brent, science has plausibly regressed when the authoritative
> argument in theology has installed itself, and the Enlightenment is half
> enlightenment as non conventional theology did not yet go through.
> But with the development of technologies we can't afford the luxury to be
> sleepy on the deep questions.
> The choice is between lying a short period of time and evolving from
> little catastrophes, or lying for a long period of time and evolving from
> big catastrophes. Somehow.
> Bruno
>  Richard
>> On Thu, Jan 24, 2013 at 10:32 AM, John Clark <>
>> wrote:
>>> I sincerely hope that nobody believes I'm picking on Catholics because
>>> Protestant "thinking" is every bit as brain dead dumb as the Pope's.
>>> Martin
>>> Luther knew perfectly well that religious ideas cannot survive the
>>> slightest
>>> amount of rational analysis without completely falling apart, but his
>>> solution to that problem was not to get better ideas but to simply insist
>>> that people check their brain at the door before they start to think
>>> about
>>> God; here are some of the noises that particular bipedal hominid made
>>> with
>>> his mouth, although I think the noises made from the other end of
>>> Luther's
>>> gastrointestinal tract may have contain more wisdom, at least they might
>>> have disclosed some evidence on how the human digestive system works:
>>> “Reason is the greatest enemy that faith has; it never comes to the aid
>>> of
>>> spiritual things, but - more frequently than not - struggles against the
>>> divine Word, treating with contempt all that emanates from God”
>>> "Whoever wants to be a Christian should tear the eyes out of reason."
>>> "Reason should be destroyed in all Christians."
>>> "Reason must be deluded, blinded, and destroyed. Faith must trample
>>> underfoot all reason, sense, and understanding, and whatever it sees
>>> must be
>>> put out of sight and know nothing but the word of God."
>>> "Reason is the Devil's greatest whore; by nature and manner of being she
>>> is
>>> a noxious whore; she is a prostitute, the Devil's appointed whore; whore
>>> eaten by scab and leprosy who ought to be trodden under foot and
>>> destroyed,
>>> she and her wisdom ... Throw dung in her face to make her ugly. She is
>>> and
>>> she ought to be drowned in baptism... She would deserve, the wretch, to
>>> be
>>> banished to the filthiest place in the house, to the closets."
>>> "We know, on the authority of Moses, that longer than six thousand years
>>> the
>>> world did not exist."
>>> "People gave ear to an upstart astrologer [Copernicus] who strove to show
>>> that the earth revolves, not the heavens or the firmament, the sun and
>>> the
>>> moon.  This fool wishes to reverse the entire science of astronomy; but
>>> sacred scripture tells us [Joshua 10:13] that Joshua commanded the sun to
>>> stand still, and not the earth."
>>> After this contemptible performance, after flat out praising the virtues
>>> of
>>> stupidity and unapologetically trying to turn everybody into imbeciles I
>>> don't see how anyone could call themselves a Lutheran or a Protestant or
>>> even a Christian without intense embarrassment.
>>> John K Clark
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