Building a Global Civilization


‘It is important to realize that the distinction between science and religion is not a matter of excluding our ethical intuitions and spiritual experiences from our conversation about the world; it is a matter of our being honest about what we can reasonably conclude on their basis. There are good reasons to believe that people like Jesus and the Buddha weren’t talking nonsense when they spoke about our capacity as human beings to transform our lives in rare and beautiful ways. But any genuine exploration of ethics or the contemplative life demands the same standards of reasonableness and self-criticism that animate all intellectual discourse. As a biological phenomenon, religion is the product of cognitive processes that have deep roots in our evolutionary past. Some researchers have speculated that religion itself may have played an important role in getting large groups of prehistoric humans to socially cohere. If this is true, we can say that religion has served an important purpose. This does not suggest, however, that it serves an important purpose now. […] That religion may have served some necessary function for us in the past does not preclude the possibility that it is now the greatest impediment to our building a global civilization.’

Harris. S. 2006. Letter To A Christian Nation p. 29

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3 thoughts on “Building a Global Civilization

  1. Perhaps then, in its crude, archaic and dangerous way, it will be “religion” with its violent schisms that will save mankind from developing a global civilization! We already know that anything “global” relating to man has been taken over by the New Word Order which translates as global totalitarianism. Is that “Brave New World” scenario a better outcome than putting up with the rants, schisms, and localised violence of religious sects? You might be surprised what a silver lining can be made up of. Man may be at a point where the species has outlived the need for religion but since man continues to eschew individual responsibility for his footprint on this world; continues to believe that might makes right, whatever takes over from religion will be worse than religion. It most likely will be even worse than Huxley’s vision. Because of the need for population control and environmental degradation, it will more likely be Orwellian. Perhaps a look at North Korea as a micro-experiment of New World Order methodology is in order!

  2. Another comment on the Harris piece, to quote: “As a biological phenomenon, religion is the product of cognitive processes that have deep roots in our evolutionary past.” With all due respect to Mr. Harris, that’s a complete crock. Religion is not, never was a “biological phenomenon” – religious is a product of evolving consciousness – yes, that politically incorrect, dirty, word: consciousness. This is the one factor science wants to obliterate from man’s mind because as long as someone still retains some little aspect of consciousness, i.e., some aspect of life outside the scientific experimental rat lab, science (that is, not real science but the power that wields it) will remain threatened. If “science” was truly honest as it pushes itself into man’s world, I’d have some respect for it. As it is, I see it becoming just another controlling Power, as it facilitates the taking over of the world by totalitarian military states and much more overtly, by corporations. When “science” takes over the planet, the inquisition will seem like a walk in the park by comparison. Time to wake up! It’s nice to dream, but some dreams are nightmares.

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