natural theology

This site is part of The natural religion project
dedicated to developing and promoting the art of peace.

Contact us: Click to email
vol VII: Notes

1999

Notes

[Sunday 17 January 1999 - Saturday 23 January 1999}

[Notebook BOOK DB 50]

[page 138]

Sunday 17 January 1999

. . .

Religion is the art of navigation through life.

[page 139]

Monday 18 January 1999

Formalism is the medium through which we communicate the messages of life.

Syntax PAINT
semantics PAINTING

The marriage of medium and message a la Hofstadter - they are equal partners and this should lead us to minimum action,

. . .

Hofstadter Le Ton Beau . . . Hofstadter

Formalism: Goedel, Escher, Bach. Hofstadter

Tuesday 19 January 1999
Wednesday 20 January 1999
Thursday 21 January 1999

The Catholic Church takes people's money and their lives on the strength of promises that it hasn't the slightest possibility of keeping. On mature consideration, it is certainly the biggest rip off I have ever encountered. What I want

[page 140]

from a church is certainly the level of accountability and responsibility that I expect from a government or a big corporation close to the heart of human health and happiness like a drug company.

Roman Catholic Church say one billion members contributing $100 per year, = $100 billion revenue, say $1 trillion capital.

Since I left the Roman Catholic Church I have spent most of my time with hippies, junkies, drug dealers and other disenfranchised people. Everywhere I see the tragic consequences of mindfucking doled out by the priests, nuns and brothers of yesteryear, at the behest of their masters in black, white and crimson.

The authoritarian nature of the Church disenfranchises most of its stakeholders. At least boys, 1f they lick enough arses, can weasel their way into some of the better jobs in the Church, but women are pretty much nonentities in the Roman Catholic Church Weltanschauung.

This book, as you can see, is driven by volcanic anger, but, I hope, like a volcano,

[page 141]

it will increase fertility wherever it falls.

There is a point I want to make absolutely clear from the outset is that although I rail against the cardinals, bishops, the priests and the nuns, the brothers and all the worthy faithful who backed them up, this sleazy mess was not the result of original sin or any other failing. All these people are my friends. The trouble lay in the corrupting force of an inappropriate corporate entity which has evolved in an era of disease, privation, starvation and all the other stresses of animal existence in a survival situation and which is totally inappropriate for the human existence which we have created. We are all in this mess together.

The key to survival is compliance. I call something compliant if it can faithfully follow the movement of something else. A good dancer or a good fucker is compliant, harmonizing with the music or the partner.

[page 142]

Compliance in technical terms is tantamount to high bandwidth, the ability to process incoming information and devise a response.

Bandwidth is thus measured by effective processing speed. That society will be most compliant to its environment that can most efficiently devise appropriate responses to environmental change. Bandwidth is first of all a simple physical measure. The bandwidth of a physical process is measured in operations per second. The hypothetical chip that runs through this story does a billion operations per second. Each operation takes in 64 bits of data from a 64 bit (n gig) memory space.

Drugs: The state or the church does not have to decide whether we will take drugs. We will do it for ourselves. We do it now, despite all the risks of infection and harassment from the forces of law and order, or the underworld that prohibition fertilizes in the drug scene.

[page 143]

Of course alcohol, caffeine. nicotine, valium etc are legal drugs, so the hypocrisy is manifest, particularly because there are of comparable 'hardness' to the list of prohibited drugs.

We take drugs because we like the effect. Legality enables us to take our drugs in an informed and optimally safe way. Illegality is the recipe for disaster, because the corporation fictitiously usurps the right of each of us to guide our own lives.

We are all corrupted by corrupt systems. We come to the multiplier effect of intelligent parallelism, ie we all work together. We have a lot to learn about programming processes to work together efficiently on a large problem.

My life's work is to channel my volcanic energy into a clear and concise exposition of the forces that set me off and the environment into which I am exploding.

[page 144]

I hardly understand a word of what I am talking about but I know that there are people out there that do.

. . .

The best models for parallel processing are human communities

Roman Catholic Church is like a triathlon or a tennis match. We all get together to stress the shit out of one another in order to feel the excitement. Of course everybody is entitled to limit their own stress and find a level that suits them.

[page 145]

governance - justice

religion - compliance

Friday 22 January 1999
Saturday 23 January 1999

Feynman diagrams are sentences written in the alphabet of particles

a) electron a--> b
b) photon a--> b
c) electron emits / absorbs photon Feynman

We use machines, we do not compete with them.

How do we reconcile the manifest multiplicity and variability of the Universe with the notion of one simple eternal god?

1. Dynamics - equality of motion and stillness
2. Relatio Aquinas 165
3. In particular, how do we deal with time and evolution?

a) old theology is wrong
b) it is right but needs transformation.

How do we understand evolution: a dual hierarchy of invariants.

Atoms change very rapidly along the

[page 147]

same tracks. Organisms change slowly along variable tracks.

At the quantum mechanical level no past and future? Particle/antiparticle.

Copyright:

You may copy this material freely provided only that you quote fairly and provide a link (or reference) to your source.


Further reading

Books

Click on the "Amazon" link below each book entry to see details of a book (and possibly buy it!)

Dawkins, Richard, Climbing Mount Improbable, W. W. Norton & Company 1997 Amazon editorial review: 'How do species evolve? Richard Dawkins, one of the world's most eminent zoologists, likens the process to scaling a huge, Himalaya-size peak, the Mount Improbable of his title. An alpinist does not leap from sea level to the summit; neither does a species utterly change forms overnight, but instead follows a course of "slow, cumulative, one-step-at-a-time, non-random survival of random variants" -- a course that Charles Darwin, Dawkins's great hero, called natural selection. Illustrating his arguments with case studies from the natural world, such as the evolution of the eye and the lung, and the coevolution of certain kinds of figs and wasps, Dawkins provides a vigorous, entertaining defense of key Darwinian ideas.' 
Amazon
  back
Feynman, Richard, QED: The Strange Story of Light and Matter, Princeton UP 1988 Jacket: 'Quantum electrodynamics - or QED for short - is the 'strange theory' that explains how light and electrons interact. Thanks to Richard Feynmann and his colleagues, it is also one of the rare parts of physics that is known for sure, a theory that has stood the test of time. ... In this beautifully lucid set of lectures he provides a definitive introduction to QED.' 
Amazon
  back
Greene, Graham, A Sort of Life, Bodley Head 1971 Amazon customer review: Greene is a master of understatment and restraint. This book is a lovely if self-effacing coming-of-literary-age memoir that is fun and reader friendly. It's invaluable for its precious glimpses into the vanished world of the 10's and 20's England. Full of curious detail too: I didn't know that Greene was related to R.L. Stevenson for example. The book ends just around the time of his first literary success. I don't know if there are any further memoirs but I wouldn't mind reading them.' Uncle Borges 
Amazon
  back
Hofstadter, Douglas R, Goedel Escher Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid, Basic/Harvester 1979 An illustrated essay on the philosophy of mathematics. Formal systems, recursion, self reference and meaning explored with a dazzling array of examples in music, dialogue, text and graphics. 
Amazon
  back
Hofstadter, Douglas R, Le Ton beau de Marot: In Praise of the Music of Language, Bloomsbury Publishing Plc, Basic Books, HarperCollins Publishers Inc 1997 Amazon: 'In the fall of 1537, a child was confined to bed for some time. The French poet Clément Marot wrote her a get-well poem, 28 lines long, each line a scant three syllables. In the mid-1980s, the outrageously gifted Douglas R. Hofstadter- il miglior fabbro of Godel, Escher, Bach - first attempted to translate this "sweet, old, small elegant French poem into English." He was later to challenge friends, relations, and colleagues to do the same. The results were exceptional, and are now contained in Le Ton Beau De Marot, a sunny exploration of scholarly and linguistic play and love's infinity. Less sunny, however, is the tragedy that hangs over Hofstadter's book, the sudden death of his wife, Carol, from a brain tumor. (Her translation is among the book's finest.) 
Amazon
  back
Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre, The Future of Man (translated by Norman Denny) , Borgo Press 1994 Amazon product description: 'Pierre Teilhard De Chardin was one of the most distinguished thinkers and scientists of our time. He fits into no familiar category for he was at once a biologist and a paleontologist of world renown, and also a Jesuit priest. He applied his whole life, his tremendous intellect and his great spiritual faith to building a philosophy that would reconcile Christian theology with the scientific theory of evolution, to relate the facts of religious experience to those of natural science. The Phenomenon of Man, the first of his writings to appear in America, Pierre Teilhard's most important book and contains the quintessence of his thought. When published in France it was the best-selling nonfiction book of the year.' 
Amazon
  back
Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre, The Phenomenon of Man, Collins 1965 Sir Julian Huxley, Introduction: 'We, mankind, contain the possibilities of the earth's immense future, and can realise more and more of them on condition that we increase our knowledge and our love. That, it seems to me, is the distillation of the Phenomenon of Man.'  
Amazon
  back
Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre, The Future of Man (translated by Norman Denny) , Borgo Pr ess 1994 Amazon product description: 'Pierre Teilhard De Chardin was one of the most distinguished thinkers and scientists of our time. He fits into no familiar category for he was at once a biologist and a paleontologist of world renown, and also a Jesuit priest. He applied his whole life, his tremendous intellect and his great spiritual faith to building a philosophy that would reconcile Christian theology with the scientific theory of evolution, to relate the facts of religious experience to those of natural science. The Phenomenon of Man, the first of his writings to appear in America, Pierre Teilhard's most important book and contains the quintessence of his thought. When published in France it was the best-selling nonfiction book of the year.' 
Amazon
  back
Papers
Gaston, Kevin J, "Valuing Common Species", Science, 327, 5962, 8 January 2010, page 154-155. 'Aldo Leopold's dictum that "To keep every cog and wheel is the first precaution of intelligent tinkering" has been oft repeated in the context of environmental management. The argument is beguilingly simple. In the absence of a detailed understanding of what each species does in an ecosystem, it would be foolish to allow the loss of any one of them. It is the precautionary principle writ large and, given its enormous ramifications for the ways in which people interact with the natural world, ecologists have spent much intellectual energy, time, and resources in determining whether it has a strong empirical basis. Indeed, some of the best-known recent ecological experiments have examined the consequences of varying the numbers of species in a small area on ecosystem function. This focus assumes that the importance of retaining Leopold's cogs and wheels lies mostly in the differences between them. However, a growing body of work on common species underlines that having sufficient copies of some key pieces may be equally, and perhaps often more, important.. back
Hirose, Kei, "Deep Mantle Properties", Science, 327, 5962, 8 January 2010, page 151-152. 'The lower mantle extends from 660 to 2890 km below the surface of the Earth. The rocks and minerals of the deep mantle are not accessible in nature, except those occurring infrequently as inclusions in diamond. However, they can be synthesized and examined at the relevant high pressure and temperature conditions in the laboratory. Recent such experimental investigations, as well as theoretical calculations, have suggested that the properties of lower-mantle minerals vary with increasing depth much more than was previously thought. On page 193 of this issue, Irifune et al. (1) report that iron (Fe) partitioning between the two main lower-mantle constituents, iron–magnesium silicate perovskite (Pv) and iron–magnesium oxide (ferropericlase, Fp), indeed changes in a natural mantle composition for conditions corresponding to depths below 1100 km. The results have profound implications for predicting the properties and dynamics of the deep mantle.'. back
Horvath, Philippe Horvath, Rodolphe Barrangou, "CRISPR/Cas, the Immune System of Bacteria and Archaea", Science, 327, 5962, 8 January 2010, page 167-170. 'Microbes rely on diverse defense mechanisms that allow them to withstand viral predation and exposure to invading nucleic acid. In many Bacteria and most Archaea, clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) form peculiar genetic loci, which provide acquired immunity against viruses and plasmids by targeting nucleic acid in a sequence-specific manner. These hypervariable loci take up genetic material from invasive elements and build up inheritable DNA-encoded immunity over time. Conversely, viruses have devised mutational escape strategies that allow them to circumvent the CRISPR/Cas system, albeit at a cost. CRISPR features may be exploited for typing purposes, epidemiological studies, host-virus ecological surveys, building specific immunity against undesirable genetic elements, and enhancing viral resistance in domesticated microbes'. back
Links
Aquinas 165, Summa I, 28, 1: Are there real relations in God?, 'Reply to Objection 4. Relations which result from the mental operation alone in the objects understood are logical relations only, inasmuch as reason observes them as existing between two objects perceived by the mind. Those relations, however, which follow the operation of the intellect, and which exist between the word intellectually proceeding and the source whence it proceeds, are not logical relations only, but are real relations; inasmuch as the intellect and the reason are real things, and are really related to that which proceeds from them intelligibly; as a corporeal thing is related to that which proceeds from it corporeally. Thus paternity and filiation are real relations in God.' back
New Matilda, Independent news, analysis and satire, 'Launched in August 2004, newmatilda.com is an Australian website of news, analysis and satire. Believing that robust media is fundamental to a healthy democracy, newmatilda.com is fiercely independent — it has no affiliation with any political party, lobby group or other media organisation.' back

www.naturaltheology.net is maintained by The Theology Company Proprietary Limited ACN 097 887 075 ABN 74 097 887 075 Copyright 2000-2014 © Jeffrey Nicholls