Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Because it matters.

A few months ago I went to dinner with my mom and grandfather. My grandpa is slowly losing his mind to Alzheimer's, so having a conversation with him becomes more difficult as time passes. He can't even remember which entrée he wanted to order, much less follow a complicated subject. As a result, that evening's conversation was limited to my mother and I.

Clinton and Obama were, of course, still going at it then. Naturally, the subject came up. That progressed to other topics, like the Supreme Court, and eventually brought me to a rant about religion's influence on our supposedly secular society. Being me, of course, I progressed into a bit of a rant about religion itself. This prompted my mom to say to me, "You're so obsessed with this stuff."

I really didn't know what to say.

Religions claim to know a universal truth about all of reality. If ANY religion is right, we instantly know what is right, what is wrong, and everything else we need to know about life, love, morality and reality. Their claims are the most important claims that can possibly be made, and they have absolutely no justification for making them. The tragedy is that people still listen to them.

Yes, I am obsessed with this stuff. It matters. I want to know the truth about reality. I want to hear every single claim every religion makes and see if there is even the slightest kernel of truth to be found. Because it matters.

The only thing that is more mind-boggling than the prospect that any given religion might be right, and that there may be a single or many gods who are so far beyond our understanding that they created our universe, is the prospect that they are all wrong and that there is no god.

That raises so many questions. Science does its best to explain as much as possible, but we will never truly reach a complete understanding of everything in our universe. Never. The only thing we can do is try.

You are damn right I'm obsessed with this stuff. I don't understand how anyone couldn't be. What happened that made the truth of everything in the universe seem trivial? If this doesn't matter, what does?

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