In a message dated 11/18/00 1:58:11 PM Eastern Standard Time,
> People that know very little about mysticism (and knowing only the
> dictionary definition is VERY little) really should not presume to say what
> mystics "simply believe". Some types of mystics believe that reason is
> supreme and transcends its own seeming limits if applied rigorously and
> honestly enough. Check out Jnana Yoga. Science for all of its acheivments
> is so far up against the wall on value and "meaning of it all" type
> questions and issues. Some go so far as to say that if science cannot
> address these things then they do not exist! This is as blind as a
> medievalist claiming that what is not in the bible is either false or not
> important anyway. Mysticism/religion sucks at describing physical reality.
> But then, that was not its stated intent. Foretelling the future is also
> not its purpose all though some mystical/religous groups lower themselves to
> acting as if it is.
I guess we can play with the definition of mysticism in all kinds of ways.
Actually, religion has tried its hand describing physicial reality; it got
shifted to the "spiritual" realm only when it was shown its descriptions were
valueless. Value and "meaning of it all" issues aren't the province of
science. They can certainly have weight, since they influence our behavior,
but they are less "real" than, say, gravity.
> > Capital 'P' Powers are not amazing or incredible, they are merely
> > inscrutable.
> If they're inscrutable, they very well could be amazing and incredible.
> don't know this- nor do I.<<
> Having, in the past, found that events and phenomena that were previously
> inscrutable (how did the sun burn, for example) have been logically and
> falsifiably explained, one can logically infer that what is now
> will also, eventually, be logically and falsifiably explained. To believe
> otherwise is to deny four centuries of human progress. Now, it is
> that at some point we might run into a wall that science and reason
> knock down -- but if one must have faith in something, I thing faith in
> science and reason is more sensible -- they have delivered a great deal
> than the alternatives.
> Actually not all things believed to be true in science are falsfiable today.
> From the fact that science and technology have delivered much it does not
> follow that all else is utterly pointless and to be discarded.
I'm not really saying that -- science is just a tool, not an end unto itself.
I think religion is largely a waste of time, but that's a personal
preference. What is great about science is that it's self-correcting; when
observations contradict scientific "dogma," the dogma will be modified
accordingly. For all we know relativity could be proven dead wrong in a
hundred years (or more likely, merely shown to be an incomplete model of
reality) and our descendants (or maybe us, courtesy of some good biotech)
will look upon things like the concept of unchanging speed of light with the
same amusement as we look at Ptolemy's model of the universe.
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