Thought of the Day: The Elephant in the Room

We supposedly know more today than ever before about human behavior and society. We know more than ever about how the brain actually works, what people actually want and need, and we’ve been steadily throwing off more and more of the old taboos, prejudices, and superstitions that once ruled our lives.

The elephant in the room is that we’ve never been more miserable.

https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fanglik.net%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2017%2F03%2Felephantintheroom.jpg&f=1&nofb=1
“Nothing to see here…”

Thought of the Day: A Solution to the Immaculate Conception – Evolution Problem

Honestly, I have no bone in the evolution fight. To my mind it makes no practical difference whether, as a matter of prehistoric fact, humans are or are not bodily descended from apes or other animals. I think most of the ‘conclusions’ that people derive from the theory (e.g. “see, everything is just a chemical reaction” or “humans are no different from other animals and non-quantitative observations are illusions”) are ridiculous on the face of them, and its quasi-dogmatical position in modern society means that I enjoy mocking it whenever I have the chance, but as a serious scientific theory, it’s mostly in the ‘none-of-my-business’ category.

That said, recently I’ve listened to more than one video where a priest or commentator has brought up a serious issue with it. At Lourdes, Our Lady said of herself “I am the Immaculate Conception.” That is, I am the (singular) Immaculate Conception. But, the argument goes, if Adam was conceived in the womb of an ape, he must have been conceived without original sin as well, since obviously no sin had been committed yet. Thus he would have been ‘an’ Immaculate Conception. And if it’s a choice between the best scientific minds in the world and the Mother of God, well, frankly she has a much better track record of being right than they do, so we must conclude that evolution is not real.

However, I don’t think it quite comes to that, for the following reason (speaking, of course, under correction, and with an idea that there are probably other solutions as well).

Genesis describes God as first forming Adam’s body before breathing life into him:

“And the Lord God formed man of the slime of the earth: and breathed into his face the breath of life, and man became a living soul.” (Gen. 2:7).

Now, this to my mind suggests that Adam was not born man, if he was born at all. That there was a period of time between when Adam came bodily into the world, formed ‘of the slime of the earth’, and when he ‘became a living soul’ in the image of God.

If we take evolution to be true, we can imagine that the creature that became Adam was born of its bestial mother in the normal course of nature, then at an appointed time was elevated by God to the state that had been prepared for him and became Man.

Nor do I think this even requires much of an interpretive stretch, since the phrase ‘formed man of the slime of the earth’ could easily, to my mind, accommodate the idea “was formed over millions of years of bestial, earthly nature.”

This staging has the added benefit of fitting well into the pattern of how God operates throughout the Scriptures, calling His chosen in youth or adulthood seemingly out of nowhere. It also would fit the pattern of the mirroring incident when Christ breathed the Holy Spirit into the Apostles, again taking men who are already one kind of thing and adding to it rather than creating ‘from scratch’ as it. Supernature building upon nature.

Of course, this would eliminate the whole problem, as Adam would then not have been immaculately conceived, since he would not then be in a state where ‘sin’ meant anything at all.

I daresay it creates problems of its own, but so it is. I only offer it for whatever it is worth. We’ll all find out the answer sooner or later.

Thought of the Day: Corporations

Possibly the greatest single political trick in all of history comes in convincing people that the corporate entity called ‘the State’ is somehow different from any other corporate entity.

Socialism essentially amounts to saying “Corporations have too much power, so we should give as much power as possible to a single corporation. Only this one can also make laws and arrest people.”

Most social reforms, revolutions, and so on are like this; the actual facts of power, authority, and so on do not go away. If anything they’re increased. They just get given different names and applied to different people.

Thought of the Day: The Idiot Elite

It occurs to me that we are in such a strange position: we are, ostensibly, a non-hierarchical society (there’s no such thing, of course, but that’s what we claim to be), yet we are in fact ruled by a malleable class of ‘elites’ whose primary goal seems to be supporting each other while openly despising the rest of the country. The weird disconnect is that they are simultaneously 1). extraordinarily stupid, corrupt, and/or incompetent and 2). equally extraordinarily satisfied with themselves and effuse in their mutual admiration. They also apparently think that the fact of 2 entitles them to every benefit they would receive if 1 were not the case.

Rian Johnson’s a good example. Hollywood and the media journalists fawn all over him as a brilliant, daring writer and filmmaker, with banner articles like “Rian Johnson on crafting the perfect plot twist” published on the IMDB and so on. Yet he apparently thinks the answer to that boils down to “you didn’t expect it, lol!” (“See, you would expect that the forty-minute subplot that occupies most of the middle of the film would have some bearing on the plot or characters but surprise twist…!”). His writing is staggeringly bad on just about every level, but the Right People gush over it, apparently because it ticks off the right boxes. Appreciating his work is part of being in ‘the inner ring’ (as Prof. Lewis puts it).

All the while the rest of us kind of stare at them in fascinated disgust, like visitors at an insane asylum.

Except the ‘asylum’ in this case is every major societal institution.

Thought of the Day

The biggest mistake Conservatives make in dealing with Liberalism in all its forms lies in treating it as an intellectual problem. We take them at their word that their views are simply an exercise of reason. A philosophy, grounded in the intellect and subject to rational investigation.

It isn’t. It’s a religion. A religion that, as part of its belief system, claims to be the result of pure reason and science. What we are experiencing and have been experiencing for the past few centuries is not a crisis of philosophy but of mythology.

The other side keeps winning because, at least on some level, they understand this. We keep losing because we keep trying to play the game they say they are playing rather than the one they are actually playing.

Thought of the Day: 10 – 2

I often hear people saying, in response to talk of how the world has deteriorated, that those who complain are nostalgic for a mythic ‘Golden Age.’ This is usually followed by comments on how [insert period here] was nothing of the kind.

This, it seems to me, has it backwards. That a given time was no Golden Age does not make the present any better. On the contrary, the less golden an age actually was, the more of more of an indictment that it seems so by comparison.

To take an analogy: the Brendan Frasier version of The Mummy is no classic. It’s a silly, stupid pulp adventure. That people look back on it fondly in the wake of the Tom Cruise version of The Mummy is not an indictment of their taste or memory; it’s an indication of just how bad the latter film really is.