Sunday, March 30, 2003

I am I am, I said I'm not myself / I'm not dead and I'm not for sale.
-Stone Temple Pilots, "Tripping on a Hole in a Paper Heart"

I'm trying to find ways to counter a current philosophical trend. A lot of people have recently (and perhaps, not so recently) concluded that just maybe, all that we perceive is utterly false, and the universe is nothing like we think it is. Think The Matrix. Some people are also entertaining the notion that objective reality may as well not exist, since all we have to work from is perception. That is to say, we may as well act as though our perceptions define reality.

Perception is indeed important. Arguably, it is all we have to go on. Thing is, I tend to belive that reality is real, and will be what it is regardless of what I think of it. My example is this: if you're hit by a truck that you don't believe in, are you any less squished? Someone I know answered "yes" to that question, and I was flabbergasted to the point of inexcusable rudeness.

If peception is that important, I thought, then why is it that "you never see the one that gets you?" Still, my words should have been kinder. I have a tendency to be nasty when I disagree with someone intellectually. With God's help, I'll put that bit of pride to rest.

...lately, I've been wondering about the usefulness of philosophy. Philosophy is based on observation and interpretation, which means it is based solely in the human perspective. Let us not forget how limited our own perspectives are, and how little we actually know about the universe. I do not deny that there is a great deal of useful knowledge out there... but let's just say I'm waiting for the next sweeping change of paradigm to come along in just about every branch of science. I would say that in regard to a lot of the big, important questions, we don't have enough information to philosophize.

That's one area where religion wins out in the search for truth... provided that the assumptions upon which the religion is based are correct. I mean, come on... if you've got facts coming straight from the creator of the universe, you don't have to puzzle out the big questions. So, if you take that route, the problem becomes finding the correct religion.

And yes, as offensive as that is, I think there is such a thing.

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