“I made a mistake… (climate alarmism) is a religion”, James Lovelock (creator of Gaia hypothesis, leading environmentalist)

A “spiritual” thought...

Our invisible conscious self is the most real thing about us, not our physical body. And consciousness may be the most real and fundamental thing in the entire cosmos, with an Ultimate Consciousness giving rise to and sustaining all material reality. Quantum mechanics tells us that we still have no idea what material reality is (see, for example, “Mass: The quest to understand matter from Greek atoms to quantum fields” by Jim Baggott). Mind is fundamental. Matter arises from mind. Philosophical Materialism has this all backwards.

“The stream of knowledge is heading towards a non-mechanical reality; the Universe begins to look more like a great thought than like a great machine. Mind no longer appears to be an accidental intruder into the realm of matter… we ought rather hail it as the creator and governor of the realm of matter”, quantum theorist James Jeans.

Another…

I accept Consciousness as the most fundamental reality, giving rise to all physical reality. But I do not view the creating/sustaining Consciousness as something neutral, such as the laws of nature. I affirm, along with others across history, that the Consciousness that gives rise to and sustains this material cosmos is most fundamentally love, and a form of love that is inexpressibly more wondrous than anything that we experience during our life journeys through this material realm. It is a stunningly transcendent “no conditions love” (non-retaliatory, non-judging, universally inclusive, not punitive or destructive). I find good expressions of this in the attempts of many in the Near-Death Experience movement (a contemporary “spiritual” movement) to tell us of the love and light that they experienced.

Example: “The very atoms of God were unconditional love; the very substance of God was unconditional love”. My conclusion from this NDE insight- If the Ultimate Reality that many call God is the most fundamental reality, the creator and sustainer of all other reality, then that makes no conditions love the most fundamental reality of all realities.

Others from past history have given us the same insight that “God is love” but often their insights were buried and distorted in religious traditions with all their endless conditions- i.e. conditions of correct belief, required sacrifice/payment, obligatory membership in the religion, proper rituals of the religion, and righteous lifestyle identifying one as a member of the given religion.

While I affirm the valued insights and help that religious traditions have given many people, no religion has ever communicated to humanity this insight that God is absolutely no conditions love. Religious traditions have buried and distorted this insight with endless conditions.

A practical outcome of this insight? “We become just like the god that we believe in”. Most people try to model in their lives what they hold as ultimate ideals and authorities.

Note: Pardon me but I have been recuperating from prostate cancer surgery and slow to put new material up.

Note on exaggeration, distortion, inciting panic in populations that leads to irrational response to problems…

From Aug. 4, 2022 Net Zero Watch newsletter (Global Warming Policy Forum):

“London, 4 August — Official data released today reveals that Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is in excellent health, with coral cover reaching record levels for the second consecutive year.

“The increase will be surprising to members of the public, who are regularly hit with scare stories about coral bleaching and false tales about a reef in long-term decline.

“A new note, published today by the Global Warming Policy Foundation, explains that the data shows clearly how a handful of coral bleaching events that have affected the reef since 2016 have had very limited impact on overall coral cover.

“Dr Peter Ridd says:

“In recent years, the media around the world has been reporting coral bleaching events in increasingly apocalyptic terms. This data proves that they are simply scaremongering.”

“GWPF director, Dr Benny Peiser said:

“This is just the latest example of empirical data making a mockery of the catastrophists. For how much longer do they think they can get away with it?”

See also https://wattsupwiththat.com/2022/08/03/surprise-the-australian-great-barrier-reef-has-bounced-back-from-climate-change/

As often repeated here- There are enough things to legitimately fear in an imperfect world. But it is highly irresponsible to exaggerate problems, thereby distorting our understanding of the true state of things and hindering our ability to respond rationally to any given problem.

The idea of decline– a dominant fallacy darkening human consciousness today.

“(The idea of decline) became arguably the single most dominant and influential theme in culture and politics in the twentieth century”, Arthur Herman in “The Idea of Decline in Western History”.

The idea of decline states that the world is becoming worse, that life is degenerating toward a worsening state, and that humanity is also becoming something worse than it previously was.

This dark and despair-inducing fallacy has primitive roots in the earliest human mythologies and their misread of the cyclical patterns of the natural world. Early people did not have the larger historical perspective to fully understand the cyclical rhythms of the natural world, such as the multi-million year ice-age eras with roughly 100,000 year cycles of glaciations punctuated by interglacial periods.

John Pfeiffer in “Explosion: An Inquiry into the Origins of Art and Religion” suggests that early people of some 100,000 years ago held a belief in an original golden age.

What happened around that time that may have given rise to the myth of decline from a better past? I would suggest that the myth of decline toward disaster could have arisen from the experience of the end of the previous Eemian interglacial (130,000 to 115,000 years ago). Some studies argue the end of that interglacial may have been quite sudden, occurring in under just a few centuries (note, for example, https://www.esd.ornl.gov/projects/qen/transit.html, https://www.climate-policy-watcher.org/abrupt-climate/eemian-rapid-climate-change.html ). That would have imprinted the memory of a better past (original golden age or paradise, Eden) during the warmer interglacial followed by the descent into the threatening cold of an oncoming glaciation (known as the Wisconsin glaciation in North America) that made survival more difficult. That experience and memory of decline from a better past may have been passed down to succeeding generations in myths of degeneration toward a worsening world.

Other early events that could have incited the myth of decline to something worse, and moreso of apocalyptic catastrophe and end of the world, would include the great flood of the Black Sea around 7600 years ago (“a catastrophic inflow of Mediterranean seawater into the Black Sea freshwater lake”, Wikipedia). Such events certainly would have appeared to be world-ending to early peoples with limited geographical exposure.

Decline toward something worse then became the central theme of apocalyptic mythology in Sumerian/Babylonian religion, Zoroastrian religion, and the Western offspring of Zoroastrianism- i.e. Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Eastern religions also embraced their own versions of decline toward something worse, toward the end of the world- i.e. the great Hindu cycles of rise followed by a decline to catastrophic ending. And Buddhism embraced declinism with its myth of the historical decrease in human lifespans.

Hence, decline toward apocalypse was already a dominant theme in the earliest human writing and mythology, notably the Sumerian Flood myth. And as prehistorians Jacquetta Hawkes and John Pfeiffer have said, what we find in the earliest writing we may assume was already believed long before in prehistory.

Added themes that re-enforced the myth of life declining included the ideas of angry, punitive deity blaming humanity for the ruin of the original golden age/paradise and subsequent degradation of life. This was accompanied by the threat of divine intervention to violently destroy the world in an apocalypse as punishment for human sin.

The gods then demanded sacrifice as payment for sin in order to qualify for entrance into the prophesied restored paradise, after corrupting evil would be purged from the world (i.e. the enemies in “false religions” destroyed).

We are still battered today with this primitive mythology in the apocalyptic religion of environmental declinism, notably climate change apocalypse. This profoundly religious movement continues to irresponsibly traumatize human consciousness with unnecessary fear, anxiety, shame/guilt, despair/depression, and even violence (see Zenon Lotufo’s “Cruel God, Kind God”, Arthur Mendel’s “Vision and Violence”, among other histories of apocalyptic millennialism that show violent, punitive deity at the core of apocalyptic mythology). Also note historian Arthur Mendel’s treatment of declinism and detail on how that primitive mythology was transformed into ideology for the modern era. The old themes remain the same even though given new expression as “secular ideology”, even “science”.

(Declinism themes in modern ideology- (1) The world has declined from a previous wilderness paradise toward the worsening state of human civilization that engages and changes elements of the natural world. (2) “Sinful/corrupting” humans are blamed for this degradation of nature. (3) There is the threat of divine intervention to punish and destroy humanity- whether in the form of “the revenge of Gaia, or the threat from angry Planet/Mother Earth, or the threat of retribution from the Universe, or from payback karma”, all contemporary punitive deities. (4) The demanded sacrifice/payment to appease the angry deities is to give up the good life in industrial civilization, and (5) also to purge the world of the evil of “too many people consuming to much of Earth’s resources”. Then (6) the lost paradise can be restored.)

Yes, behind daily media hysteria over heat waves and claims that other features of life are becoming worse (against evidence to the contrary), I detect the residue of the above ancient ideas now deeply embedded in human consciousness and narratives, even in human subconscious.

The pathology of declinism mythology continues to incite and fuel modern era crusades of alarmist panic-mongering, crusades that, followed by irrational salvation schemes, wreak immense harm on societies. We counter these “profoundly religious” crusades with evidence-based hope on the actual state of the world and the true trajectory of life. Note the research of Julian Simon (Ultimate Resource), and many others in this regard.

We also counter primitive declinism mythology by going to those deeply embedded religious themes and offering better alternatives to structure human narratives.

This from “Weekly Climate and Energy New Roundup #515 posted at Wattsupwiththat.com
The quotes below are from Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP)

“So, I will ignore the click bait news media’s fear mongering that our oceans are “on the boil” due to rising CO2. There is simply no scientific proof to support such dishonest narratives.

“And I will sleep well. There is no climate crisis…

“Fact or Fiction? Generally, climate studies, including those government sponsored, are not a physical science. They are contradicted by the best physical evidence available – including over forty years of atmospheric temperature trends and measurements of the impact of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Humans adding carbon dioxide to the atmosphere are not causing dangerous warming. Except for the West, much of the world does not believe the results of climate models…”

And a note on an MIT paper…

“A paper edited by Professor Emeritus Kerry Emanuel of Massachusetts Institute of Technology calls for bolder studies of extreme claims. An expert on tropical cyclones, Emanuel is a strong supporter of the IPCC and its models. The ACE index of tropical cyclones shows that intensities of storms are declining, not increasing, for whatever the reason.

“The paper then states:

“How bad could climate change get? As early as 1988, the landmark Toronto Conference declaration described the ultimate consequences of climate change as potentially ‘second only to a global nuclear war.’ Despite such proclamations decades ago, climate catastrophe is relatively under-studied and poorly understood. [Boldface added]

“This is complete non-science, based on speculation, not physical evidence. Over the past 40 years, there have been great advances in understanding what is occurring in the atmosphere. This physical evidence does not support the claims of catastrophic climate change. The exaggerations are mindless. Accepting this advice is as foolish as accepting the advice of a heart specialist who has ignored the advances in understanding heart disease over the past 40 years. In 1980 the US death rate from heart diseases was 412 per 100,000 in population; in 2018 164 per 100,000, a decline of 60%. See links under Defending the Orthodoxy, Questioning the Orthodoxy, Communicating Better to the Public – Use Propaganda, and https://www.statista.com/statistics/184515/deaths-by-heart-diseases-in-the-us-since-1950/”

And this from Francis Menton on the emerging war on nitrogen which is a war on agriculture.

Net Zero Is Not Just For Carbon Emissions — Now It’s Nitrogen

Some more speculation on the “spiritual/metaphysical” (My ongoing fascination with this uniquely wondrous feature of conscious human existence- love)

The greatest of human achievements is open equally to every person and is not dependent on education, skills, wealth, or other markers of human status.

The highest human experience, and the ultimate liberation from our base animal inheritance, is to love one’s enemies, like a Mandela. Or like the ladies at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa (“The Forgiven”), or “The Railway Man”, or the prisoners in “To End All Wars”. Meaning: Love that takes the courageous initiative to love without expecting a similar response, that gives even when receiving nothing in return, and that forgives when the offender has not shown remorse or asked for forgiveness. Such expressions of love take us to the absolute heights of being human, of what it means to be maturely humane. These expressions of love enable us to tower in stature, to become the true heroes of our stories. Love of enemies is the ultimate human experience and achievement.

A wisdom sage stated it this way:

“Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you. If you love only those who love you, what credit is that to you? Everyone finds it easy to love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Everyone can do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Most will lend to others, expecting to be repaid in full. But do something more heroic, more humane. (Live on a higher plane of human experience). Do not retaliate against your offenders/enemies with ‘eye for eye’ justice. Instead, love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then you will be just like God, because God does not retaliate against God’s enemies. God does not mete out eye for eye justice. Instead, God is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. God causes the sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. Be unconditionally loving, just as your God is unconditionally loving”. (My paraphrase of Luke 6:32-36.)

Added note: If it is true that God is love or as one NDEr discovered (Near Death Experiencer) “The very substance of God, the very atoms of God were unconditional love”, and if God as the creating Consciousness sustains all reality in existence, then love is the most fundamental reality of all, the transcendent core reality of the cosmos and all material reality. Love is then also our most fundamental nature, the essential nature of our conscious self, as varied sages remind us that we are one with the ultimate love and light that is Creating Consciousness. To love is to be most authentically human, to be our most authentic self.

(Yes, some in the NDE movement speak of that divine love as more than just a feature/characteristic of deity, and more as an actual fundamental essence or substance in the sense of a metaphysical substance like consciousness which many others argue is the most fundamental reality behind all physical reality, the core creating and sustaining reality behind all else. Put this in your pipe and smoke it for a while.)

Another: Is there some inseparable relation of love to light as is consistently expressed in Near Death Experiences? Einstein wanted to spend the rest of his life exploring light (“For the rest of my life I want to reflect on what light is.”). Did he sense that light, aside from its physical elements, was something more fundamental to reality?

I refer often here to the Near-Death Experiences because, better than many other insights on metaphysical realities, they remind us of what matters ultimately- love.

James Lovelock, creator of the Gaia hypothesis, father of modern environmentalism, has just died. Here are some quotes from the latest “Net Zero Watch” newsletter, a memorial to Lovelock, July 28, 2022…

“Of the green movement, (Lovelock) said: “Well, it’s a religion. It’s totally unscientific.”

“He went on: “I’m afraid the thing gets exaggerated out of all proportion, and the greens have behaved deplorably instead of being reasonably sensible.”

“I think you have to accept that the sceptics have kept us sane… They have been a breath of fresh air. They have kept us from regarding the science of climate change as a religion. It had gone too far that way. There is a role for sceptics in science. They shouldn’t be brushed aside.

“I’ve got quite a few friends among the sceptics, as well as among the “angels” of climate science. There are some sceptics that I fully respect. Nigel Lawson is one. He writes sensibly and well. He raises questions. I find him an interesting sceptic. What I like about sceptics is that in good science you need critics that make you think.

“James Lovelock, the maverick scientist who became a guru to the environmental movement with his “Gaia” theory of the Earth as a single organism, has admitted to being “alarmist” about climate change and says other environmental commentators, such as Al Gore, were too.

The problem is we don’t know what the climate is doing. We thought we knew 20 years ago. That led to some alarmist books – mine included – because it looked clear-cut, but it hasn’t happened,” Lovelock said.

The climate is doing its usual tricks. There’s nothing much really happening yet. We were supposed to be halfway toward a frying world now,” he said.

“He pointed to Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” and Tim Flannery’s “The Weather Makers” as other examples of “alarmist” forecasts of the future.

Lovelock had the integrity and humility to admit that his climate alarmism had been wrong: He concluded near the end of his life, “I made a mistake”.

This from Climate Change Weekly, number 442:

96% of US temperature data sets (surface temperature stations) are fatally flawed…

Climate Change Weekly #442: U.S. Surface Station Network Is Fatally Flawed, Heartland Report Shows

Quotes:

“The basic underlying cause of how catastrophic climate change is supposed to be occurring is greenhouse gases accumulating in the atmosphere, trapping heat, warming the Earth, and driving myriad other changes such as worsening weather events.

“The problem for that narrative is that the Earth has not been warming to the degree… that climate models have consistently projected over the years it would. No catastrophic warming, no catastrophic climate change. If climate models are wrong about the most basic projection they were created to make, there is no reason to take any of their other projections seriously.

“Worse news for climate alarmists—though not for normal people with other things to worry about—is that even the warming that has been recorded is a result of bias, not reality, with reported average temperatures being higher and trending steeper than if the system used accurate measurements. Proof of this has been published in a new report by The Heartland Institute: Corrupted Climate Stations: The Official U.S. Surface Temperature Record Remains Fatally Flawed. This report is an update of a 2009 study by meteorologist Anthony Watts, a Heartland senior fellow…

And

“The temperature data sets used in official government reports making alarming claims about rapidly rising temperatures and dangerous climate change come from a fatally flawed network of weather stations. More than 96 percent of the stations surveyed fail to meet the National Weather Service’s requirements for quality measurements.

“As a result, the official temperature record is biased, being more than twice as hot as records from the U.S. Climate Reference Network. If we can’t trust the temperature records, which is supposed to be the driving force for dangerous climate change, why should we trust the predictions of worsening extreme weather made by government agencies?”

Good advice from Joe Rogan– episode 1848 with guests Francis Foster and Konstantin Kisin… available for free on Spotify

Among many other topics, they discuss the beginning of some new venture or job and how poorly we perform in such situations. But that is the learning process that makes us who we are later in life. So “Don’t be scared that you suck in the beginning. Everything you do when you start out, you suck at. There is no way to be amazing from the start. Just do it and get better… plan to fail but don’t give up. Just work hard at getting better”, Joe Rogan.

This by Jordan Peterson on the ruinous policies of the Trudeau Liberals deserves wide reading…

https://nationalpost.com/opinion/jordan-peterson-worst-is-yet-to-come-from-trudeau-liberals

Climate alarmism is a story, a narrative. And it is a dominant story today, re-enforced daily with hysterical news stories about extreme weather events of all sorts, mainly heat waves and storms.

The climate alarm story embraces a variety of common themes that have shaped human stories across history- both personal and public stories. The themes are as old as recorded human history and have been found in the earliest human writing (Sumerian, Akkadian, Babylonian, and other ancient societies). Note these themes in the list below (“Old Narrative Themes, Better Alternatives”) that have been adopted by the climate alarm story, themes now given “secular/ideological” expression for the modern world.

Climate alarmism is essentially an apocalyptic/millennial story, concocted to incite fear, panic, and to push populations to embrace an irrational salvation scheme (“save the world from the coming collapse and ending”). And like all apocalyptic stories, climate alarmism is pushing societies to commit collective suicide with no good scientific justification.

Let’s hope that enough rational people will regain their senses before the damage from the “decarbonization salvation crusade” becomes too overwhelming for many of the most vulnerable people.

My point here? Be aware of the ideas that shape alarmist movements and expose the primitive origins of such ideas and then offer better alternatives. Change the meta-narratives, the big public stories, and thereby liberate people from irresponsible, mythically-based panic-mongering.

Yes, climate is changing, and CO2 contributes to climate warming, and yes humans are contributing some to this trend. But the change has not created a “climate emergency”. To the contrary, the change has been very mild (1 degree C over the past century in an abnormally cold world where far more people die from cold every year than die from warmth). The climate change we have experienced has been mostly net beneficial to all life.

Varied commentators are bemoaning that scientific fact does not change many minds regarding climate alarmism. I would suggest this is because most people still hold to stories that are shaped by themes/beliefs from an ancient past. And they hold an emotional commitment to those beliefs that is not shaken by facts. The outcome of emotional commitment to beliefs is that people then engage confirmation bias responses- only accepting information that affirms their beliefs and ignoring contrary information. We are all susceptible to these things.

Take the myth of apocalypse, for example, one of the most dominant myths across history. Apocalyptic mythology states that life is declining toward a worse future, toward collapse and disaster, even ending. Despite growing evidence over past centuries that life is not declining but has been improving toward more complexity, organization, and a better future, the myth of decline toward apocalypse is still a dominant theme in the world religions and now also shapes the ideology of Declinism- “The most dominant and influential theme in the modern world” (Arthur Herman- The Idea of Decline in Western History).

The public story industry- i.e. Hollywood- further solidifies the confirmation bias orientation to apocalypse by endlessly promoting apocalyptic mythology. The endless affirmation of this pathological myth is shameless, irresponsible, and dangerous panic-mongering- inciting the human survival impulse and frightening people to embrace destructive salvation schemes like decarbonization, schemes that are ruining societies and harming the most vulnerable people the most.

Insert: See “The Most Self-Destructive Force in the World” at

The Most Self-Destructive Force in the World

Climate alarmism is the most prominent version of apocalyptic lunacy today. News media buttress apocalyptic hysteria by obsessing endlessly over every natural weather extreme, claiming such are “the worst on record”, and more proof of the looming, imminent disaster. The confirmation bias element in climate alarmism? Ignoring the good evidence to the contrary that shows there is no increase in extreme weather events and, overall, the mild warming of the past century (1 degree C), and added CO2, have been net beneficial to all life.

Far more people die every year from cold than die from warmth (see Lomborg article just below) and the added warming has decreased cold deaths more than it has increased warm deaths. Add that more basic plant food- i.e. CO2- has added 15% more green vegetation to the Earth, meaning more food for animals and increased crop production for humanity. Hence, I continue to post the best evidence on climate such as the physics of CO2- the research of physicists like Richard Lindzen, William Happer, and others.

My argument here is, aside from presenting critical scientific research, to also go to the root ideas in human narratives in order to fully counter the themes that drive the madness of apocalyptic-type movements.

In the face of so much hysterical alarmism today, don’t be afraid of “climate doing what climate always does” (James Lovelock).

And again, remember the metaphysical speculation that points to the reality of love at the core of all, the same love that is our essential core, our truest self. A love closer than our own breath or atoms. Endless fear mongering distorts life and buries the evidence of the good that exists all through life.

Love drives out fear.

(As often repeated here- there are enough things to legitimately fear in an imperfect world. It is highly irresponsible to exaggerate problems, thereby distorting our understanding of the true state of things and hindering our ability to respond rationally to any given problem.)

And this good news:

Climate Crisis? Ever Fewer People Dying of Climate Disasters. There’s Hype, And There’s Reality

This from Jeff Jacoby at the Boston Globe (reported on Wattsupwiththat.com)

Boston Globe Admits Global Warming has Saved Lives

Monday July 25, 2022

“I hate hot weather. I’ve always hated hot weather. I’m quite sure that I always will hate hot weather. One of my children lives in Texas, and I have been monitoring with horror the heat wave that has sent temperatures in his city above 100 degrees every day for the last two weeks. It has been just as bad in much of Europe , where triple-digit temperatures have scorched England, France, and Spain. Then again, things aren’t much better in Boston, where the thermometer on Sunday afternoon officially reached 100 degrees.

“But there are two silver linings. One is that heat predictions for the United States are somewhat less dire than for other regions of the planet. The federal government’s latest National Climate Assessment points out that while the frequency of intense hot spells experienced by Americans since the 1960s has been increasing, we are still well below the records set nearly a century ago. “Heat wave magnitude reached a maximum in the 1930s,” the report says. “The Dust Bowl era of the 1930s remains the peak period for extreme heat.” (Note that this was before heat waves could be blamed on human fossil fuel use.)

“The other silver lining is considerably more encouraging: The decrease in extreme cold is saving many more lives than the increase in heat waves is costing. Worldwide, cold weather kills far more people than hot weather. A study published last summer in The Lancet found that between 2000 and 2019, there were nearly 5.1 million deaths caused by extreme temperatures. About 500,000 of those deaths were heat-related, while nearly 4.6 million were cold-related.”

Here’s an article on the Climate Intelligence network (CLINTEL)…

Ability of mankind to solve problems is beyond imagination

“CLINTEL was initiated by emeritus professor of geophysics Guus Berkhout with the objective to make the many critical climate organizations around the world combine forces and work closely together against one-sided information and false conclusions promoted in the news media…

“The Clintel mission is: “Bringing Climate Knowledge to the World”…

“CLINTEL’s climate vision can be simply summarized by: “There is no climate emergency”. We formulated the World Climate Declaration (WCD), a one-page summary of what scientific climate realists agree upon. In a few words, the WCD states that global warming is a fact but not a crisis, the cause of global warming has large natural components, more CO2 in the atmosphere is a blessing, and climate measures must be focused on adaptation. Currently, the WCD has been signed by more than thousand scientists and engineers…

“Surprisingly, we only hear doom and gloom from the media. According to them, the world is collapsing due to the influence of man. But hard facts show the opposite. Did you know that (i) in the past 100 years the number of people on our planet increased from 1.9 billion in 1922 to 7.9 billion in 2022, while global life expectation increased from 40 to 73 years, (ii) the number of people who died by natural catastrophes decreased by more than 90%, and (iii) there were never so many people taking care of the natural environment, etc., etc. What a hopeful perspective!…

“Today’s huge technological investments that try to stop climate change are a historical mistake. If we study the past and present, we see that the cause of climate change has large natural components, the combination of solar irradiation and oceanic behavior being by far the most important. Thinking that we can stop climate change by decreasing the CO2-concentration in the atmosphere is not only naive, but also an outrageous waste of money. The cost is huge, the benefit miniscule…

“What must be done is: 1) accept climate change as an unavoidable natural phenomenon, 2) better understand the climate system with truthful science and 3) adapt to its continuous changes by developing effective adaptation technologies…

“Today’s government policies are driven by computer models. However, the results of those models are completely determined by what the modelmakers put into them. Modelmakers can set up a model in such a way that it produces whatever the financier wants to see. Politicians are fond of models. In governmental research institutes, scientists follow instructions to set up ‘scientific’ models in such a way that the outcome favors the intended governmental policy. They then blatantly claim that the outcome is scientifically sound. My advice is to ban the use of politics-driven ‘scientific’ models all together. Those false models push us back into the dark times of superstition…

“Wind turbines and solar panels are not only extremely expensive and space intensive, but they are also unpredictable energy suppliers and, therefore, they require a huge back-up system. So, totally unsuitable to replace the current energy infrastructure (‘the old shoes’). Using hydrogen for storage purposes involves big energy losses and makes the renewable circus even more foolish. Did you know that in the current global energy mix, 80% is fossil fuels and only 2% is wind and solar?…

The CO2-crisis is artificial, constructed by climate alarmists who, with their pitch-black scenarios, have Western governments and parliaments in their power. To formulate it nicely, Western administrators are naïve and do not (want to) realize how essential the role of CO2 is in nature. Bear in mind, climate change is much more than CO2, and CO2 is much more than climate change. Isn’t CO2 the raw material for all life on Earth? Looking at total costs and benefits, isn’t more CO2 in the atmosphere a blessing for mankind and nature?”

Some good links on climate alarmism:

The Green objective to price gas out of reach of Canadians…

https://financialpost.com/opinion/john-williamson-high-gas-prices-have-been-the-plan-all-along

https://financialpost.com/opinion/gwyn-morgan-the-disastrous-consequences-of-the-green-movement

And “The West’s climate policy debacle” (Wall Street Journal):

https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-wests-climate-policy-debacle-global-warming-energy-putin-russia-fossil-fuel-power-summer-heat-11658084481

Quote from Wall Street Journal article…

“It’s time for political leaders to recognize this manifest debacle and admit that, short of a technological breakthrough, the world will need an ample supply of fossil fuels for decades to remain prosperous and free.

“Soaring oil and natural gas prices. Electricity grids on the brink of failure. Energy shortages in Europe, with worse to come. The free world’s growing strategic vulnerability to Vladimir Putin and other dictators.”

See full article on Net Zero Watch newsletter at Global Warming Policy Forum site… or perhaps this link…

The West’s Climate Policy Debacle – WSJ

This Wall Street Journal article by Bjorn Lomborg, posted at https://wattsupwiththat.com/2022/07/22/how-the-climate-elite-spread-misery/

How the Climate Elite Spread Misery (Most people are more worried about high gas prices and food prices, which green policies make worse.)

Bjorn Lomborg writes in the Wall Street Journal,

“The chattering classes who jet to conferences at Davos or Aspen have for years been telling the rest of us that our biggest immediate threats are climate change, environmental disasters and biodiversity loss. They point to the current heat waves killing thousands across Europe as the latest reason to change our societies and economies radically by switching to renewables.

“Such arguments are misleading. It’s true that as temperatures rise the world will experience more heat waves, but humans also adapt to such things. In Spain, for example, rising temperatures have actually led to fewer heat deaths, because people have adapted faster than temperatures have gone up. It simply took air conditioning, public cooling centers and better treatment of maladies that are caused or aggravated by heat, such as heatstroke and heart disease.

“The exclusive focus on heat deaths is also misleading. Across the world, low temperatures are much more dangerous than high ones: Half a million people die each year from heat, but more than 4.5 million die from cold. While rising temperatures will increase heat deaths, they will also decrease cold deaths. A recent Lancet study found that rising temperatures since 2000 have on net reduced the number of temperature-related deaths. Researchers concluded that by the end of the 2010s, rising temperatures globally were causing 116,000 more heat deaths annually, but also leading to 283,000 fewer cold deaths a year.

“Moreover, politicians’ singular focus on climate change ignores that people are much more worried about rampant inflation, especially rising food and energy prices. And climate policies are making those problems worse.”

Lomborg cites Sri Lanka as the latest best example.

“Sri Lanka is the epitome of elite environmentalism gone wrong. Pushed to go organic by activists and the World Economic Forum, the government banned synthetic fertilizers in April 2021. Food production collapsed and the currency defaulted. Hungry and outraged citizens launched protests, overran the presidential palace, and forced the government to resign en masse and the president to flee the country.”

Lomborg concludes.

“It’s starting to dawn on some elites that their policies are creating political dangers. Frans Timmermans, the European Commission’s vice president, has said that many millions of Europeans may not be able to heat their homes this winter. This, he concludes, could lead to “very, very strong conflict and strife.”

“He’s right. When people are cold, hungry and broke, they rebel. If the elites continue pushing incredibly expensive policies that are disconnected from the urgent challenges facing most people, we need to brace for chaos.

“Mr. Lomborg is president of the Copenhagen Consensus and visiting fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. His latest book is “False Alarm: How Climate Change Panic Costs Us Trillions, Hurts the Poor, and Fails to Fix the Planet.”

It’s a good commentary and well worth reading at the WSJ. It’s pay-walled, but I read it with a free subscription.

“UN health agency chief declares monkeypox a global emergency”

https://www.msn.com/en-ca/lifestyle/smart-living/un-health-agency-chief-declares-monkeypox-a-global-emergency/ar-AAZTi5W?li=AAggNb9

Watch this sort of declaration that has become all too repetitively persistent in our modern era- the declaration of “emergencies… crisis… catastrophes… and existential threats”, among other apocalyptic-scale terms. Note the media obsession with such language (sociologist David Altheide’s “Creating Fear: News and the construction of crisis”) and the politician’s love of such threat to cow and control populations according to political agendas. We saw this irresponsible panic-mongering erupting with the Covid threat and have observed it for decades now with climate alarmism.

Yes, there are threats to health and life that must be taken seriously but exaggeration of those threats distorts the true nature of any problem, incites public panic, and too often results in people becoming susceptible to “salvation” responses that cause far more harm than the original problem (note the decarbonization crusade in this regard). Note that others in the link above are questioning the declaration that the UN chief made- without “expert” opinion. Note also that there have been only 5 confirmed deaths so far from monkeypox.

The UN chief’s intentions may be good, but careful about endlessly alarming people without including the full picture on any given problem. People have been too alarmed over past decades from “environmental crisis” exaggerations and public consciousness has now become traumatized from such panic-mongering that good follow-up science has repeatedly shown to be excessive and often politically/ideologically motivated.

(“Traumatized”? Yes, the world surveys showing that majorities in countries believe “the world is becoming worse” when overwhelming evidence shows that life continues to improve across many important indicators/resources. See “Humanprogress.org” and other sources. Also note the growth of “eco-anxiety” among children.)

“The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by an endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary” (H. L. Mencken, “In Defense of Women”).

A more rational response to apparent “emergencies”? When any problem emerges in life, seek immediately for the fullest picture of the issue- including contrary fact, all the information related to the problem/issue. Especially include skeptical information. This will help counter personal confirmation bias and the tendency to exaggeration of the problem. On issues like climate change- include the longest possible trends in relation to the problem. That will provide a more balanced context in which to evaluate the problem.

And like Forrest Gump, that is all I have to say on two important factors that help get us to good science. (1) Fullest picture and (2) longest-term trends. The climate alarm movement fails on the second with its endless mantra of “hottest on record”, referring only to past decades or the past century.

Note the long-term graphs provided by meteorologist Anthony Watts in his recent article at

Wrong, Legacy Media, Climate Change Is Not Causing Summer Heatwaves in the U.S. and Europe

The wonder of being human

With the singularly unique consciousness that defines us as human beings, there is something profoundly and cosmically wondrous about being human. See neuroscientist and Nobel laureate John Eccles books along this line (i.e. “The Self and Its Brain”, “The Human Mystery”, “The Wonder of Being Human”, and “Evolution of the Brain, Creation of the Self”). And as Near-Death Experience people tell us, we are essentially beings of love.

Unconditional love is the essential nature of our human spirit, our authentic or most real self. This ought to inspire us to “tower in stature as maturely human”, to become the heroes of our stories, as measured by our ultimate human ideal- universal love (Joseph Campbell). Yet we too often descend into such subhuman pettiness when we focus on the faults of others, obsessing over their failures, and then condemning, vilifying, humiliating, and even trying to destroy them (e.g. cancel culture madness). Public media re-enforce this ugly retaliatory impulse in our societies.

A re-orientation to the generosity of love is a re-affirming of our true selves.

This report on extreme weather claims and actual trends according to latest data

President Biden’s False Claims About Extreme Weather Get Ignored by the Corporate Media

Quotes from above link:

“Biden claimed that climate change had made hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts, and wildfires worse. Data proves each of these assertions is false… Each of Biden’s claims about the worsening of extreme weather events is refuted by real world data collected by the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the U.S. government’s own agencies.

“… as the Earth has modestly warmed, the number of hurricanes and their intensity have either remained flat or actually declined.

“Data show the present drought waxing and waning across much of the Western United States is nowhere near as severe or long-lasting as those experienced with some regularity in America’s past. Indeed, as recently as 2017 and again in 2019, the US set records for having its smallest percentage of land area experiencing drought conditions.

“Hard data thoroughly debunks Biden’s claims that climate change is causing worse wildfires, as well. Data on wildfires presented in “Climate at a Glance: Wildfires”, from the U.S. National Interagency Fire Center from as far back as 1926 show current acres burned in the United States, are approximately 1/4th to 1/5th of the amount burned annually in the 1930s…

“The climate science falsehoods Biden made in his speech were not so innocent, rather they were direct statements contained in his official speech. Unfortunately for the propagandists, Biden’s denial of science on the issue of climate is testable. Data proves that the President was wrong to assert that extreme weather is becoming more common and severe. Contrary to his statement, climate change is no “Code Red for Humanity.”

A primary project of this site– To liberate people from unnecessary fear, unwarranted fear; to re-assure everyone that, despite the suffering and pain of existence in this imperfect world, ultimately there is a stunning love at the core of reality and life.

I “speculate” on the fundamental nature of the creating Consciousness (i.e. my regular forays here into theological or ultimate meaning issues) because past fallacies about deities are the foundational roots of many other human fears- i.e. myths of deities punishing people through the harshness of the natural world, through disasters, disease, or predatory cruelty. (Note the persistence of punitive deity in “angry Planet/Mother Earth, retaliatory Universe, vengeful Gaia, and payback karma” myths.)

The ideas that we have inherited regarding these things (both religious and “secular”) have too long promoted unnecessary fear, adding an extra psychic burden to already intolerable human fears over life.

And regarding the more “here and now” issues like climate alarmism- the motivation to liberate from fear drives my search for evidence that gives us a more clear understanding of the true state of life on Earth, evidence that affirms the natural human orientation to hope and love.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on “I made a mistake… (climate alarmism) is a religion”, James Lovelock (creator of Gaia hypothesis, leading environmentalist)

Liberation into no conditions love

The list below contains some of the most important information/insight that I would pass on to a new generation. The new themes point to the most profound liberation of all- the liberation of human consciousness at the deepest levels thought, emotion, and motivation… liberation of the human spirit from the most primal fears that have burdened humanity across the millennia.

Wendell Krossa wkrossa@shaw.ca

Intro to the short version of “Old Narrative Themes, Better Alternatives” (long-form version available just below this short-form list)

Joseph Campbell noted that a prominent set of primitive myths has been repeated all across human history and across all the cultures of the world. People embracing these mythical themes in their personal worldviews are subjected to a profoundly distorted perception of reality.

The same mythical themes that have dominated human narratives across history continue to dominate human narratives and distort public consciousness today. They continue to deform human perception of reality, distorting our understanding of the true state of our world.

The mythical ideas that Campbell referred to have long been the central beliefs of the world religions. They are now also embraced in “secular” ideological belief systems like “Declinism” a contemporary version of apocalyptic mythology, the fallacy that life is becoming worse and declining toward catastrophe and ending, as propagated in the ideology of Environmental alarmism/climate alarmism. These ideas have even found expression in “scientific” versions. But at core they are the same old primitive pathologies as ever before.

Note, for curiosity’s sake, that many young moderns today claim self-identities as “secular/materialist… even atheist” and yet continue to mouth the very same themes of the primitive mythologies of previous millennia, no different in substance from Sumerian, Akkadian, Babylonian, Zoroastrian, and other ancient belief systems.

You then get this cognitive dissonance outcome: People, thinking that they have freed themselves from mythical/religious ideas and have embraced more secular, materialist, even atheist belief systems, are living in self-delusion because a close examination of the worldviews of such people reveals that the core themes they hold are often the very same old mythical themes as those held across history by fundamentalist religious people.

Psychotherapist Zenon Lotufo states that bad mythical ideas are seriously damaging to human life in terms of unnecessary fear, anxiety, shame/guilt, depression, despair/nihilism, and violence (i.e. his point that Cruel God theories deform human personality- see his book “Cruel God, Kind God”).

Example: The “loss of paradise” myth incites a sense of loss, wrong done, grievance, and the felt need to engage a righteous battle to make things right again (i.e. the urge to engage justice as punitive treatment of an enemy’s failure- the enemy blamed for ruining something pure and good- in order to make things “right” again). The actual trajectory of life reveals there was never any original paradise that has been ruined by humanity but, rather, the long-term trajectory of life shows an ongoing rise from a worse past toward a better future. This trajectory of evolutionary progress encourages hope to continue investing in improving the world because, so far, we have done well in making life ever-better (Julian Simon, Ultimate Resource).

Another (related to Lotufo’s points): If we believe that some deity will judge, punish, exclude and destroy our enemies (i.e. send them to Hell) then we will inevitably end up treating our opponents in the same manner (judging, condemning, excluding, punishing). We become just like the God that we believe in. This “behavior based on belief” relationship operates in both religious and “secular” environments.

The alternative ideas offered, taken from human insight across history, speak to the profound liberation that is possible- i.e. liberation of mind, consciousness, and spirit at the deepest levels, a liberation initiated by radically changing the core ideas/themes that have long been embedded in back of human minds, hardwired even in human subconscious. Such ideas shape how people perceive and understand the world, how they feel about things, and influence their motivations to respond/behave in life.

The liberation of human mind by reshaping consciousness with entirely new themes then ripples out to impact all of life and society because we become just like the ultimate ideals/themes that we believe in, the themes that we embrace to shape our worldviews. The alternatives listed below point us in the direction of authentically humane existence. They show us how to become the heroes of our stories, how to “tower in stature as maturely human” (Joseph Campbell).

Insert note: Climate alarmism, with its apocalyptic scenarios and salvation schemes, is a contemporary example of a profoundly religious movement fraudulently presented as secular ideology, even science. Climate alarmism embraces the worst of bad ideas/themes from mythical traditions.

Note to our atheist friends regarding the varied themes below that deal with deity features- Suck it up. You are never going to rid humanity of the impulse to God speculation, to create God theories, so rather than deny this primal human impulse, learn to work with it. One option- Purge deity theories of all the primitive mythical/religious features and reshape God theory entirely with scientific, psychological advances, and insights from contemporary “spiritual” movements like the NDE movement with its primary discovery that the “Light” is unconditional love of a stunningly inexpressible nature. That overturns all religious mythology in one stroke. All religions are systems of conditions- i.e. conditions of correct belief, demanded sacrifice, membership in the “true” religion, and required religious lifestyle that evidences membership in the true religion.

Whether defined as God, Light, Universe, Gaia, Universal Mind, Ultimate Consciousness, Mother Earth, karma, or other, most people continue to embrace some version of Ultimate Reality or creating Intelligence (see again the PEW Research Center’s “Global Religious Landscape” survey). God theories continue to contribute some of the most basic features to human meta-narratives and personal worldviews (both in religious and “secular/materialist” versions).

Old narrative themes, better alternatives (short version), Wendell Krossa

1. Old story myth: The idea of deity as a judging, punishing, and destroying reality. Contemporary “secular” versions of judging, punishing deity include “Vengeful Gaia, angry Planet/Mother Earth, retributive Universe, and payback karma”.

Alternative: The new theology of deity as a stunningly no conditions reality (no conditions love). There is no threat from an unconditional God, no judgment, no exclusion of anyone, and no ultimate punishment or destruction. All are safe- in the end.

2. Old story myth: The idea of a perfect beginning (Eden) and a God obsessed with perfection, enraged at the loss of perfection, demanding punishment of imperfection, and atonement (sacrifice/payment) to remedy imperfection and restore the lost utopia.

Alternative: The world was purposefully created as originally imperfect in order to serve as an arena for human struggle, learning, and development. Deity has no problem with imperfection. Others include the argument that there can be no such reality as good without its opposite- i.e. evil/imperfection. Good cannot exist alone or be known and experienced without a contrasting reality.

This is not to excuse, diminish, or defend evil. From our five-senses and four-dimensional perspective we rightly feel outrage at evil and engage battles against evil. But holding some speculation on the reason for the existence of evil, in our big picture background narratives, may help us to maintain our humanity during our righteous battles against evil in this world. As Campbell argued, we must not forget that our “enemies” are still our family in the end. And in this life we are all just “actors on God’s stage” (Campbell again) engaging oppositional roles in a temporary realm to provide one another with contrasting life experiences. Yes, this is metaphysical speculation. But what might be a better alternative to explain evil? The ultimate tribal division of humanity? Eternal cosmic dualism (i.e. true believers/unbelievers forever, eternal heaven and hell) versus an ultimate return to our original “oneness”?

3. Old story myth: Humanity began as a more perfect species (the myth of primitive people as pure and noble hunter gatherers, “Adam/Eve”) but those early people became corrupted/sinful (i.e. the myth of the “Fall of mankind”). This myth has led to persistent anti-humanism- blaming humanity for all the imperfections and suffering in the world.

Alternative: Humanity emerged from the brutality of animal reality to gradually become more humane across history (a long-term trajectory of humanity rising/improving, not falling into a trajectory of degeneration/decline).

4. Old story myth: The world began as an original paradise (again, the past was better) but after the “Fall” the overall trajectory of life has been declining, degenerating toward something worse.

Alternative: The long-term trajectory of life does not decline but overall rises/improves toward something ever better (i.e. more complex, organized, advanced).

5. Old story myth: The belief that natural disasters, disease, human cruelty, and death are expressions of divine punishment, and that humanity deserves punishment.

Alternative: While there are natural consequences all through life, there is no punitive, destroying deity behind the imperfections, and related natural consequences, of life.

6. Old story Myth: The belief that humanity has been rejected by the Creator and we must be reconciled via blood sacrifice/suffering.

Alternative: No one has ever been rejected by the unconditional Love at the core of reality. No one has ever been separated from God. Ultimate Love does not demand appeasement/payment/atonement or suffering as punishment for sin.

7. Old story myth: The idea of a cosmic dualism between Good and Evil (i.e. God versus Satan) now expressed in human dualisms (tribes of good people versus their enemies- the bad people). Ultimate Good versus Evil is used to validate our inherited animal impulse to tribalism- to view ourselves in opposition to differing or disagreeing others (This is not to deny there is actual evil to be opposed, but to challenge the tendency to view differing others as “enemies”, when they are members of the same one human family.).

Alternative: There is a fundamental Oneness at the core of all and we share that oneness. We all belong equally to the one human family and equally share the ultimate eternal Oneness that is God.

8. Old story myth: The belief in a looming apocalypse as the final judgment, the ultimate punishment of wrong, and the final destruction of all things.

Alternative: There are problems all through the world but there is no looming threat of final divine destruction and ending. Apocalypse is a great fraud and lie. There will be no apocalypse as in the religious version of divine intervention to punish humanity and destroy the world (i.e. as, for example, in the New Testament book of Revelation).

9. Old story myth: The always “imminent” element in apocalyptic demands urgent action to save something, even the use of coercive violence to effect “instantaneous transformation”. (Arthur Mendel, in Vision and Violence, details the difference between the approaches of totalitarian “instantaneous transformation” and democratic “gradualism”.)

Alternative: While unexpected catastrophes could still happen, there is no “imminent end of days” on the horizon, inciting the urgency to “save the world”. Rather, life improves through gradual democratic processes as creative humanity cooperatively solves problems.

10. Old story myth: The demand for a salvation plan, a required sacrifice or atonement (debt payment, punishment).

Alternative: Unconditional deity does not demand sacrifice, atonement, payment, or punishment as required for appeasement. Deity loves unconditionally.

Additionally, this important comment from Bob Brinsmead (full comment in section below “Understand the root themes of the environmental religion”):

“The area often touched on superficially and skirted around like a root out of the dry ground is the matter of the anti-sacrificial movement launched by John the Baptist and brought to a head by the very issue that led directly to the death of Jesus. This is the matter of the real nature of Jesus’ temple protest. This was always destined to become the central issue of all Jesus research. No one disputes that Jesus died. If the temple event is seen as Jesus carrying forward the anti-sacrifice mission of his cousin John, then Jesus has to be seen as utterly against the whole religious idea that a sacrifice, an act of violent blood-letting to make an atonement for sin, should ever be required for reconciliation with God or with one another.

“This would mean that the Christian religion was founded on a false interpretation of the meaning of the death of Jesus, and it was out of this grave misunderstanding, that the whole edifice of its Christology arose– the Christology of a divine, virgin born and absolutely sinless man by whom God supposedly defeats evil by an act of apocalyptic violence, first in the Christ event and finally in a holocaust at the end of the world.

“Or to put it more simply, Jesus died protesting at the temple, the place where sacrifices were offered, affirming that God requires no sacrifice (no blood-letting violence) to put us right with God; yet the Christian religion turned the death of Jesus into God’s supreme sacrifice to put us right with God. Rightly understood, point 9 resolves the issue of point 8, that is, whether the historical Jesus was an apocalyptic Jesus or a sapiential Jesus.” Bob Brinsmead

11. Old story myth: The belief that retribution or payback is true “justice” (i.e. eye for eye, hurt for hurt, humiliation for humiliation, punishment for punishment).

Alternative: Unconditional love keeps no record of wrongs, forgives freely and without limit. And yes, there are natural consequences to bad behavior in this world, but all justice should be humanely restorative/rehabilitative in response to human failure.

12. Old story myth: The belief in after-life judgment, exclusion, punishment, and destruction (i.e. hell). This pathology adds unnecessary sting to the natural human fear of death.

Alternative: Unconditional love does not threaten ultimate judgment, exclusion, punishment, or destruction.

13. Old story myth: The idea of a “hero” messiah who will use superior force to overthrow enemies, purge the world of wrong, and install a promised utopia.

Alternative: A God of authentic love does not intervene with overwhelming force that overrides human freedom and choice. It is up to maturing humanity to make the world a better place through long-term gradualism processes that respect the freedom of others who differ.

14. Old story myth: The fallacy of biblicism- the belief that religious holy books are more special and authoritative than ordinary human literature, and the related fallacy that people are obligated to live according to the holy book as the revealed will, law, or specially inspired word of God.

Alternative: We evaluate all human writing according to basic criteria of right and wrong, good and bad, humane or inhumane. Holy books, written by fallible people like ourselves, are not exempted from this basic process of discernment/evaluation.

15. Old story myth: The idea of God as King, Ruler, Lord, or Judge. This myth promotes the idea that God relates to humanity in domination/submission forms of relating. This is based on the primitive idea that humans were “created to serve the gods”. Such ideas have long been used to validate human forms of domination over others (i.e. the “divine right of kings, priesthoods”).

Alternative: There is no domination/subservience relationship of humanity to God. True greatness is to relate horizontally to all as equals. The “greatness” of God is to relate to all as free equals, not to “lord over” others.

16. Old story myth: The idea that humanity is obligated to know, serve, or have a relationship with an invisible reality (deity), that we are to give primary loyalty to something separate from and above people.

Alternative: Our primary loyalty is to love and serve real people around us. Their needs, here and now, take priority in life. Loyalty to realities placed above people (laws, institutions, or higher authorities) has always resulted in the neglect or abuse of people.

17. Old story myth: The perception that God is silent or absent during the horrors of life (i.e. Where was God during the Holocaust?). This myth of absent deity is based on the primitive belief that God is a sky deity (dwelling in heaven above, separate from humanity), a deity that descends to intervene in life and change circumstances, override natural law, in order to save or protect people.

Alternative: There has never been a Sky God up above in some heaven. The reality we call “God” has always been incarnated equally in all humanity and God has always been immediately present in all human suffering and is intimately present in all human raging and struggle against evil. God is inseparable from the human spirit in all of us and is expressed in all human action to prevent evil, to solve problems, and to improve life. We are the embodiments/incarnations of God in this world, and nothing saves us except our choices and actions to oppose wrong and to help one another, to make life better in this world.

18. Old story myth: The fallacy of “limited good” and the belief that too many people are consuming too much of Earth’s resources, and hence world resources are being exhausted.

Alternative: More people on Earth means more creative minds to solve problems. More consumption means more wealth to solve problems and enable us to make life better- i.e. enable us to improve the human condition and protect the natural world at the same time. Evidence affirms that human improvement and environmental improvement has been the outcome of more people on Earth enjoying the good life. See “Population Bombed” by Desrochers and Szurmak, “Ultimate Resource” by Julian Simon, “Humanprogress.org”, and related studies.

Further, we are not exhausting Earth’s resources. With the emergence of some apparent resource scarcity, humanity through improving technology then works to discover more reserves of those scarce resources or makes the shift to alternative resources. There is a superabundance of resources in our world. Note also the “dematerialization” trend in modern advanced societies (the ongoing trend of less material inputs per person, economies of scale with increasing urbanization, etc.)

Add your own themes/ideas and alternatives.

Qualifier:

Following recent past eruptions of religious terrorism (i.e. ISIS), varied public commentators rightly noted that such eruptions would continue into the future unless we confronted the ideas/ideologies behind such violence. Go to the root ideologies, they said, and deal properly with those systems of ideas/beliefs. Apply this “go to the root of the problem” to all alarmism/apocalyptic movements. There are common ideas/themes behind such movements, worldviews/narratives that incite people to destructive action. If we are to problem-solve thoroughly and for the long-term future, then we need to tackle the root ideas/themes behind alarmism movements and deal thoroughly with those root contributing factors.

Now… Preface to the long version of Worst Ideas, Better Alternatives

Preface to Humanity’s Worst Ideas, Better Alternatives (long version) Wendell Krossa

The belief/behavior relationship, or theology/ethics relationship, is as old as conscious humanity. People, motivated by their primary impulse for meaning, have always tried to model their lives and societies according to some greater ideal or authority, most commonly according to their views of deity. There has never been a higher ideal to guide human life than the ideal of deity.

Plato embraced the belief/behavior pattern with his argument that the ideal life and society should be molded according to the invisible Forms or perfect Ideals. The Hebrews followed this pattern in the Old Testament, shaping all aspects of their lives and society according to what they believed was the law, word, and will of their God. Anthropologist Clifford Geertz noted this practice among the Balinese of Indonesia who patterned their villages and homes according to what they believed was the divine model.

The fundamental role of belief in shaping human behavior and society (inspiring, guiding, validating human behavior) makes it critically important that our guiding ideals/authorities are fully humane, in line with humanity’s ever-advancing understanding of the authentically humane in all areas of life. The subhuman features that our ancestors projected onto deity ought to concern all of us because of the correlated subhuman treatment of others across history in the name of deity (i.e. horrific outcomes as in religious violence).

The 18 “Old story themes” below focuses on some of the most dominant and influential ideas from history. Ideas that have shaped human consciousness via mythical and religious traditions. They continue to shape the worldviews of most moderns today in “secular” or ideological versions.

The consequences of subhuman ideas have always been significantly damaging, both personally and across wider societies. Evidence? On the personal level see psychotherapist Zenon Lotufo’s “Cruel God, Kind God”. Cruel God theologies include the pathological features of deity as a tribally exclusive (favoring true believers, antagonistic toward unbelievers/outsiders), retaliatory (divine payback), dominating (deity as Lord, King- validating domination of others), punitive (deity as harsh judge, justice as punitive), and deity as a destroying reality (apocalypse, hell). These themes have burdened human lives with unnecessary fear, anxiety, depression, despair, and violence. And the consequences in human behavior have been horrific because people “become just like the God that they believe in”. As Bob Brinsmead added, “Men never do greater evil than when they do it in the name of God”.

See also the Millennial Studies historians noted in sections below- Richard Landes, Arthur Mendel, and David Redles. They have detailed how the ‘apocalyptic millennial’ complex of ideas contributed to the mass-death movements of the past century (Marxism, Nazism, environmental alarmism). Mendel (Vision and Violence) was right to conclude that “apocalyptic has been the most violent and destructive idea in history”.

The project to embrace better alternatives is about the full transformation and liberation of consciousness, and more humane outcomes in human life. The old ideas of humanity’s past meta-narratives are no longer credible for defining or explaining reality and life. Further, they have long been too dangerous to inspire and guide human thought and behavior.

Humanity’s worst ideas, better alternatives (rethinking 18 of the most fundamental ideas from across human history)

1. Old story theme: The myth of deity as a judging, punishing, and destroying reality that metes out final justice- rewarding the good, punishing the bad (i.e. threat theology). The myth of a “wrathful God” continues as the cohering center of the world religions and is now also given expression in “secular” versions such as “vengeful Gaia, angry planet, pissed Mother Earth, retributive Universe, and payback karma”- the new retaliatory, destroying gods of environmental alarmism, history’s latest apocalyptic movement. (Note: Western religious traditions have always affirmed violence in deities. Eastern traditions have also embraced violence in deity as in “Lord Shiva the Destroyer”.)

The myth of God as a retaliating, punishing reality has long under-girded human justice systems as similarly retaliatory and punitive. From early human beginnings, belief in a punitive deity has incited and affirmed the demand for punitive response to human imperfection and failure.

The primitive view of deity as punitive, i.e. God as the Ultimate Destroyer (via apocalypse, hell), is the single most important “bad idea” to engage and correct. All other bad religious ideas are anchored to this foundational pathology in human thought.

New story alternative: The “stunning new theology” that God (Ultimate Consciousness, Mind, Intelligence, Source, Mystery) is an inexpressible “no conditions love”, a non-retaliatory Reality. The adjective “unconditional” points to our highest understanding of love. It is simply the best of being human and is therefore most critical for defining deity as transcendent “Goodness”. Takeaway? There is no ultimate judgment, no ultimate exclusion of anyone, no demand for payment or sacrifice to appease angry deity, no need for redemption or salvation, and no ultimate punishment or destruction of anyone (no such mind-perverting horror as “hell”).

Why bother with these speculative metaphysical corrections? Human well-being requires us to counter humanity’s “primal fear of after-life harm” that is the outcome of millennia of shaman/priests/pastors beating bad religious ideas into human consciousness/subconscious. Fear of after-life harm adds sting to the already unbearable fear of death that many people suffer. Also, we need to sever the age-old relationship of “bad beliefs validating bad behavior”. However you may try to affirm justice as punitive treatment of the failures of others, know that deity as unconditional reality does not validate such endeavors. See “The Christian Contradiction” below (Historical Jesus versus Paul’s Christ myth).

None of the great world religions has ever presented the reality of an unconditional deity. All religion across history has been essentially about conditional reality- i.e. the required conditions to appease and please religious deities (conditions of right belief, proper religious rituals, required religious lifestyle, demanded sacrifices/payment for wrong, etc.).

Further, the new theology of God as unconditional Love overturns the most psychologically damaging myth that has burdened and enslaved humanity from the beginning- the myth of divine retribution/punishment exhibited through the nastier features of life. While there are natural and social consequences to living in this world and to our choices and behavior, there is no punitive Force or Spirit behind natural world events and consequent suffering (i.e. no punitive God behind natural disasters, disease, or the predatory cruelty of others). The myth of punitive deity behind such things, whether angry God, vengeful Gaia, angry Planet, retributive Universe, or payback karma, has long burdened people with unnecessary guilt, shame, fear, and anxiety. Like the distressed Japanese woman who asked after the 2011 tsunami, “Are we being punished for enjoying life too much?”

Paul used this primitive threat theology on the Corinthians, claiming that their sicknesses and deaths were punishment from God for their sins.

(Note the qualifiers in sections below on holding people accountable for their behavior, the need to restrain bad behavior, responsible human maturing and growth, and restorative justice approaches. All necessary for healthy human development, in this world.)

2. Old story theme: The myth of a “perfect beginning” and that God is obsessed with perfection in the world and life, that God creates perfection (e.g. Eden), that God is enraged at the subsequent loss of perfection, and now wants to punish imperfection. This idea of deity obsessed with perfection originated with the misunderstanding that any good and all-powerful deity would only create a perfect world, and if things are not perfect now then blame corrupt humanity for mucking things up that were once perfect. It can’t be God’s fault.

We- humanity- have always had difficulty understanding and embracing imperfection in life and in ourselves. Imperfection, and fear of divine rage at imperfection, has long deformed human consciousness with fear, anxiety, shame, guilt, and depression. We rightly struggle to improve ourselves and others, and to improve life in general, but we ought to do so without the added psychic burden of fear of angry deity or divine threat over our remaining imperfection. (Note: There are healthy forms of guilt over personal failure and additional unhealthy elements that arise from bad ideas.)

New story alternative: The world began in “chaotic imperfection” but has gradually evolved toward something more complex and organized. Life on this planet is never perfect, but with a lot of hard work humanity has discovered how to gradually improve life. Over history, humanity has created something better out of the original imperfect, wilderness world.

In this new story theme, God has no problem with imperfection but includes it in the original creation. Imperfection, in a new story, serves the important purpose of providing an arena where humanity struggles with a messy wilderness situation, and human imperfection/failure, in order to learn to solve problems and create something better.

And we learn the most important lessons of life in our struggle with our own imperfection. For example, we learn how to love in our struggle with the animal inheritance in ourselves, those base drives to tribally exclude, to dominate, to punish and destroy differing others. We learn what it means to be authentically humane in our “righteous struggle against evil” (Joseph Campbell), the battle against evil that runs through the center of every human heart (Alexander Solzhenitsyn).

Perfection, aside from being boring, does not bring forth the best of the human spirit. To the contrary, struggle with imperfection in life, and in others, brings forth the best in humanity. See Julian Simon’s argument (Ultimate Resource) that our struggle with problems in the world results in creative solutions that benefit others. See also the comment below on Joseph Campbell’s outline of human story and our struggle with a personal monster or enemy (i.e. some life problem that may be physical, mental/emotional, interpersonal, financial, social, etc.). That struggle is where we gain insights and learn lessons that can subsequently help others. Personal suffering also promotes the development of empathy with others that similarly suffer. Empathy is fundamental to being authentically human.

(Note: The use of the term “imperfection” is not meant to generalize and diminish the horror and trauma that people suffer from natural disaster, disease, and the cruelty of others. But ‘old story’ explanations of the imperfection of the world as a fall from original perfection due to human corruption/sin, and subsequent imperfection introduced as punishment for that original sin… such myths tend to affirm deity as cruel, punitive, and destructive- i.e. God as the great obsessive-compulsive Punisher of imperfection. That only adds unnecessary psychic suffering to already unbearable human suffering- i.e. the added burden of unnecessary mental, emotional suffering. We can do better and understand original imperfection in alternative ways. And this is the impulse to “theodicy”, as roughly the belief there is Ultimate Good/Love behind all. Add here the view that the world purposefully exists as an experience or learning arena.)

3. Old story theme (related to previous): The myth that humanity began as a more perfect species but then became corrupted/sinful (the “fall of man” myth). The idea of original human perfection, and subsequent human degeneration toward something worse today, is still common in the “noble savage” mythology that dominates throughout academia- i.e. the myth that original hunter/gatherer people were more pure, strong, and noble but humanity has degenerated in civilization. See, for instance, Arthur Herman’s ‘The Idea of Decline’, or Steven LeBlanc’s ‘Constant Battles’. Contemporary versions of “fallen humanity” mythology include Green religion’s belief that humanity is a “virus” or “cancer” on the Earth. These are pathologically anti-human views.

New story alternative: Humanity has emerged from the brutality of animal reality (original imperfection) but has gradually become less violent, more humane, and overall more civilized. See James Payne’s “History of Force”, and Stephen Pinker’s “The Better Angels of Our Nature”. Also, the amassed evidence on humanity improving life over the long-term affirms that “we are more creators than destroyers” (Julian Simon in Ultimate Resource).

A new alternative to “fallen humanity” myths will recognize that humanity, with human spirit and human consciousness, is intimately united with the greater Consciousness at the core of reality, a Consciousness that is Love. This “union with deity” is more than relationship. It is more about essential nature. This means that the same Love that is God, is also the essential nature of our human spirit or human self. We can then re-imagine ourselves as most essentially “beings of Love”. We are fundamentally good. This radically changes human self-imaging. We are not the “fallen humans possessing sinful natures” as we have long been taught by mythological and religious traditions.

The real issue is not how far humanity has fallen (the mythical perspective) but the real wonder is how far we have risen (the evidence-based perspective) from our brutal animal and primitive human past. Our improvement over history is evidence of the essential goodness of humanity naturally emerging over time.

(Note: How to explain continuing bad human behavior? We have inherited a core animal brain with its base impulses to tribalism and exclusion of differing others (small band mentality), to domination of others (alpha male/female), and to retaliatory and destructive response to others viewed as “enemies”. Our human consciousness/spirit, existing alongside our inherited animal side, explains the great “battle between good and evil that takes place in every human heart”, (Alexander Solzhenitsyn). The bad side in humanity is not “inherited sin” but is better understood in terms of the complex of inherited animal impulses in us. See Lyall Watson’s “Dark Nature”. Fortunately, to paraphrase Jeffrey Schwartz, “We are not our brains”.)

4. Old story theme: The myth that the world began as an original paradise and that ancient “golden age” has been lost and the trajectory of life is now “declining”, or degenerating, toward something worse (“Each present moment is a degeneration from previous moments”, Mircea Eliade).

The trajectory of life as a “decline toward something worse” is a core feature of apocalyptic mythology.

New story alternative: Life does not decline overall but the long-term trajectory of life shows that life actually “improves/rises” toward something ever better. Humanity, as essentially good and creative, is now responsible for the ongoing improvement of life and the world. (Note again Julian Simon’s conclusion that we- humanity- have become “more creators than destroyers”.)

Evidence of life improving over past millennia and strikingly so over recent centuries: Julian Simon’s “Ultimate Resource”, Greg Easterbrook’s “A Moment on the Earth”, Bjorn Lomborg’s “Skeptical Environmentalist”, Indur Goklany’s “The Improving State of the World”, Matt Ridley’s “Rational Optimist”, Ronald Bailey’s “The End of Doom”, Desrocher and Szurmak’s “Population Bombed”, Bailey and Tupy’s “Ten Global Trends”, Hans Rosling’s “Factfulness”, James Payne’s ”History of Force”, Stephen Pinker’s “The Better Angels of Our Nature”, and others.

Brian Green’s “The Universe Story” and Harold Morowitz’s “The Emergence of Everything” offer more on the longer “improving” trend of the overall cosmos from chaotic heat beginnings to a state that was amenable for carbon-based life to emerge. And over the long history of this planet, life has developed toward more complexity, organization, and suitability to mediate human consciousness . Further, even Darwin affirmed that evolution trended toward something more “perfect”.

This theme of long-term improvement, of a fundamental direction toward something better, is critical for countering apocalyptic nihilism/despair and affirming hopefulness.

5. Old story theme: The myth that natural disasters, disease, human cruelty, and death are expressions of divine punishment. This adds the unnecessary psychic burden of fear, anxiety, guilt, and shame to already unbearable physical suffering. Paul tormented the Corinthians with this argument that their sicknesses and deaths were punishment from God for their sins.

New story alternative: While there are natural and social consequences all through life, there is no punitive, destroying deity behind the imperfections of life. Ultimately there is only Love at the core of reality (see alternatives below on the relationship of Love to the elements of freedom and randomness in life).

6. Old story theme: The myth that humanity has been rejected by the Creator, that we are separated from our Source and we need to be reconciled, we need to restore the broken relationship with God, via a violent blood sacrifice.

New story alternative: No one has ever been separated from the unconditional Love at the core of reality. That Love has incarnated in all humanity as inseparable from the human spirit and consciousness. That Love is the essence of the human self or person, though its expression is often hindered and buried by the free choice of people to act inhumanely.

But be assured that no one has ever been separated from the indwelling love that is God, no matter their failure to live as human. God as love is always closer than our breath or atoms. God as love is inseparable from our common human spirit and consciousness.

Note: God incarnated in all humanity demands a radical rethink of theology or God theory. There has never been any such reality as a separate ‘Sky God’ up in some distant heaven. God has always been intensely and immediately present in all humanity and this is evident in the best of humanity, in all human goodness. Conclusion? The reality we call “God” is present in all human raging against evil and suffering. God is present in all human effort to make life better. There has never been any such thing as an absent or silent God. Just listen to and observe the common goodness in people all around you.

Again, as stated similarly in number 3 above, this new alternative overturns entirely the historically persistent myths of “fallen”, “essentially sinful”, or “bad-to-the-bone” humanity.

Further, the idea of God incarnated equally in every person presents a new element for affirming equality among people, and equal respect for all. God incarnated in humanity offers a stunning new element to defining the essential core of being human- what we really are as human persons and that every human person ought to be highly esteemed as an embodiment of deity, no matter their failures to live as fully human. The Near-Death Experiences also repeatedly note this feature of the astounding human unity with deity- of inseparable oneness with the divine.

7. Old story theme: The myth of a cosmic dualism, a Good spirit in opposition to a bad spirit- a demonic entity or Satan. Deity is thereby portrayed as embracing an essentially dualistic tribal reality- a good God that wars against evil opponents, a God that favors believers and hates/punishes unbelievers. This idea of a fundamental cosmic dualism is embraced and exhibited through varied human dualisms- such as the tribal mindset of “us versus our enemies”, true believers versus unbelievers, or other racial, national, religious, or ideological divisions (include the use of gender as an oppositional divide). Dualism thinking deforms human identity and buries the fact of our essential oneness in the human family. Dualism mythology affirms the inherited animal impulse that orients people to small-band thinking and behavior (the tribal exclusion of differing others). Embracing dualism as a divine reality and ideal then orients people to opposing, dominating, and fighting/destroying others as ‘enemies’.

New story alternative: We all come from the same Oneness and we are all equals in the one human family. We are not essentially defined by the tribal categories and divisions that we create to set ourselves apart from one another, to devalue one another. We are most essentially defined by our common human spirit and human consciousness. And the essential nature of our human spirit is universal or unconditional love. That love is the expression of our true core humanity.

Added note: Most modern story-telling (e.g. movies) continues to re-enforce the primitive themes of dualism and tribalism. Note the all-too-common movie theme of good guy versus bad guy, and “justice” as the good guy beating and destroying the bad guy. There is nothing in such narratives affirming the oneness of the human family. To the contrary, only further affirmation of infantile tribalism and “justice” as retaliation toward offending others. The only dualism that we ought to be concerned about is that of “the battle-line between good and evil that runs through the heart of every person”, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. This is the dualism that exists between our true human spirit or self and our inherited animal brain impulses.

Caution: The above comment on essential oneness is not intended to diminish the urgency to fight evil and affirm good in this world. But some have suggested that dualism, and the apparent separation related to dualism- i.e. the division between good and bad- is only a temporal feature of this material realm. This world with its dualism provides an arena for us to live out our stories and engage our varied “righteous battles against evil”. Others have argued that we only experience and learn what good means in our struggle with the opposites of good- i.e. the bad in others, and in life. Bad/evil in this realm provides a contrasting context in which we experience and learn good. Joseph Campbell suggests that this dualistic realm is where “we act out our differing roles on God’s stage” (some playing bad guy, some playing good guy). But he and others suggest that the dualism between good and bad exists only here in this world. It is temporal and not part of any greater timeless reality. See also Natalie Sudman’s ‘The Application of Impossible Things’ for personal illustration of these things.

Further note on oneness: The oneness of all, along with the unconditional nature of deity, counters the myth of some people as especially chosen of God and favored by God more than others. There are no “elect people”, or special “children of God”. The people who see themselves as “true believers”, more so than others, are not closer to God than any other people. Essential oneness means that all humanity, that is every person, has God within them, equally. All people have equal access to the immediacy of God that is everywhere present as the sustaining Core or Source of all reality. Further, there are no special “holy places”- i.e. temples, churches- where limited religious groups gain more access to God than the ordinary lives and daily mundane spaces of all people. Essential oneness of all with deity is a more humane theological basis for human equality in all aspects.

8. Old story theme: The myth of a looming apocalypse as the final judgment, punishment, and destruction of all things. The myth of an apocalyptic ending embraces the pathological theology of God as the destroyer of all things. This ideal has incited endless destructive violence among the followers of such an ideal. Arthur Mendel called apocalyptic “the most violent and destructive idea in history” (Vision and Violence).

To embrace and advocate apocalyptic mythology is to embrace and advocate the epitome expression of nihilism- i.e. the complete and final destruction of life and the world.

Apocalyptic mythology still dominates much of modern story-telling, whether movies, TV, literature (the sub-genre of “post-apocalyptic”), and environmental alarmism or Green religion.

New story alternative: There are problems all through this imperfect world but there is no looming threat of a final destruction and ending of the world (the religious understanding of apocalypse since Zoroaster). The apocalyptic alarmist exaggerates problems in the world out to “end of days” scenarios, thereby distorting the true state of things, and that promotes fear (the survival impulse) and even destructive violence in populations. The inciting of violence is evident in the consequent felt need of people to “coercively purge” what is believed to be some great threat. See the notes in other sections/articles on the Marxist, Nazi, and Green apocalyptic movements and their mass-harm and even mass-death outcomes.

In the new story alternative theme there is no destroying Force or Spirit behind the harsher elements of this world. Ultimately, there is only creating and sustaining Love. And again, the imperfection of this world serves the purpose of providing a learning arena for humanity to struggle with in order to create something ever better.

Further, the destructive elements in the cosmos and world exist as part of the ongoing creative process (i.e. death as entirely natural and serving the purpose of making room for new life), just as Second Law dissipation of energy is “virtuous waste” that serves the creation of more order (Huber and Mills in “Bottomless Well”). Again, the element of destruction in the natural world is not evidence of some punitive deity threatening a final punishment and ending of all things. (See also the notes below on “natural consequences”.)

Further helpful here- In response to the theodicy question “Is this the best possible world?” some have made the argument that there are also beneficial outcomes from the destructive elements of nature. For example, the plate tectonic movement that generates destructive earthquakes also generates mountain-building, which creates differences in climate and that contributes to the development of diversity in emerging life (i.e. different environmental pressures on populations and the change that brings forth). Our project is to adapt to such things and we have done better over time. Our success is evident across history in the decreasing loss of life from natural disasters (i.e. a stunning 99% decline in human deaths from natural disasters over the past century).

9. Old story theme: The urgency of “imminence” (key element- “instantaneous transformation” of life versus “gradualism” in the trajectory of history and life)

The always “imminent” element in apocalyptic proclamations (i.e. the “end is nigh”) demands urgent action to “save” something, to save the world or life. The exaggerated threat of looming apocalyptic ending then incites the survival/salvation impulse in people. They feel the need to take immediate and sometimes violent action to purge what is presented to them as the life-threatening thing. Alarmed populations are then more easily manipulated to embrace policies that will abandon the democratic process and instead will support “coercive purification” schemes directed at purported threats from opponents/enemies. “End-of-life” or “end-of-world” claims incite populations to embrace policies that will coercively and instantaneously install their version of salvation and security in some promised paradise.

Apocalyptic alarmism that exaggerates and distorts the true state of things has too often unleashed the totalitarian impulse across history.

We saw the violence of instantaneous transformation policies in the 100 million deaths that stemmed from Marxist urgency to coercively purge the world of the threat from “destructive capitalism”. Marxism pushed for “instantaneous transformation of societies”, to immediately install its vision of communal utopia. We also saw apocalyptic urgency and totalitarianism in the 50-60 million deaths from Nazi alarmism and consequent action to violently purge Germany of the imagined threat from “destructive Jewish Bolshevism”. Nazis then coercively pushed to establish the millennial paradise of the Third Reich. And we are seeing “coercive purification” again today in the environmental alarmist push to save the world from “destructive humanity in industrial civilization” and to restore the lost paradise of a more wilderness world (Arthur Mendel in “Vision and Violence”, and Arthur Herman in “The Idea of Decline”).

New story alternative: There is no “end of days” just over the horizon. Rather, life is improving gradually as creative humanity solves problems. The escapist desire for an instantly installed utopia misses the point of the human story as the struggle with imperfection throughout the world, a struggle that is gradually succeeding. Such struggle is essential to human development, learning, and growth. Mendel in “Vision and Violence” is good on this issue of “gradualism” versus the violence of “instantaneous transformation” movements. Humanity is learning to patiently improve life through democratic approaches that do not coercively overwhelm the freedom of differing others.

The search for instantaneous salvation comes from the irresponsible escapist mindset of apocalyptic types who cannot endure the struggle to gradually and democratically improve an imperfect world. Such people irresponsibly seek to escape to some instantly installed utopia, even if coercively and violently established.

10. Old story theme: The demand for a salvation plan- a required sacrifice or atonement (debt payment, punishment) as necessary to appease some great threat or threatening reality, whether a religious God or vengeful Gaia, angry planet, upset Mother Earth, punitive Universe, or payback karma.

New story alternative: In a stunning rejection of atonement mythology, Jesus rejected the payment of debt as the required demand of God before God would forgive. Jesus advocated the highest form of love, or goodness, as giving freely to everyone without expecting any payment in return. He stated in Luke 6:30-36,

“Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you. If you love only those who love you, what credit is that to you? Everyone finds it easy to love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Everyone can do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Most will lend to others, expecting to be repaid in full. But do something more heroic, more humane. (Live on a higher plane of human experience) Love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then you will be just like God, because God is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. God causes the sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. Be unconditionally loving, just as your God is unconditionally loving”. (My paraphrase of Luke 6:32-36.)

Jesus’ argument is that exhibiting ‘no conditions love’ (not expecting payment) would enable people to be like God who was similarly no conditions love. The argument of Luke 6 is that if we do this- give without expecting payment in return- then we will be like God who does not expect payment. God loves, gives, and does not expect anything in return. This statement of Jesus overthrows the age-old religious belief that God demands payment or punishment for wrongs, that God demands atonement or sacrifice in order for God to forgive and love. Read it again and again till the point being made is clear. It is a time-bomb waiting to explode the shackles of distorting mythology that has long enslaved human consciousness.

The fundamental nature of God as unconditional love means absolutely no conditions. None. To affirm as pointedly as possible- there is no divine demand for ultimate payment, sacrifice, no conditions to fulfil. With ultimate safety secured, the only “salvation” that we need to engage in this life is the ongoing and gradual struggle to make life better in this world.

The reality of God as “no conditions Love” obligates us to make all the logical conclusions that arise from such a stunning new theology. Again, the critically important one is that an authentically unconditional God will not demand any conditions of payment or sacrifice. God does not demand a balancing response to goodness or love that has been initially shown. Jesus clearly argued this in his Matthew 5 and Luke 6 statements where he taught that an authentic universal love will not just love those who love in return (i.e. family, friends, or fellow tribe members). Unconditional love will also love those who do not love in return. Unconditional love will freely give to all and not demand any return payment. No payment of debt is required as necessary to earn forgiveness and love.

Unconditional love does good to everyone without expecting a similar response, without expecting any payback (include sacrifice here). This is how Jesus further defined a God that “loved enemies”.

In the above statements, Jesus rejected the principle of debt payment as a fundamental requirement of divine love. Again, this is clearly expressed in the statement to “give/love expecting nothing in return”. Keep in mind that in these passages (Matt.5 and Luke 6) he urged people to love in a new unconditional manner because that was how God loved. He was arguing for a new standard of love that would show what God was like, that would enable people to do just what God did, to be just like God (i.e. “Love your enemy because God does”).

Debt payment, or more generally the righting of wrongs, had long been the requirement before offering forgiveness. Payment or punishment of wrong had been the basis of atonement thinking from the beginning. That was based on the archaic belief that God, as holy, must punish all wrongs properly and fully, and must rectify all wrongs by demanding payment or retribution of some sort. God must right all wrong, and thereby rebalance the scales of justice in the cosmos. Wrong done had to be rebalanced by right done. God could not just forgive, accept, and love without first making all wrongs right. That was necessary to restore divine honor. The God of that old atonement/sacrifice mythology could not just “freely” forgive and love.

To modern sensibilities that old theology no longer makes sense because it argued that the love of God, based on prerequisite payment/punishment/atonement, was something less than the best of human love. We are expected to just forgive in an unlimited manner (“seventy times seven”), to accept all people universally, and to love without demanding prerequisite conditions or similar response. Again that statement- “give without expecting payment in return, love without expecting love in return”. Parents, spouses, and friends have all learned that no conditions love is the best and highest form of love for daily relationships. Surely God as Ultimate Goodness and Love would, at the least, love as well as we are expected to love- that is, unconditionally.

In his parables Jesus also further challenged and corrected the old religious belief that divine love was conditional and demanded full payment or punishment. His short stories illustrated the ‘no conditions’ love that defined his new theology. In his stories he stressed the point that divine love did not require the payment of debt, or more generally the righting of wrongs, before forgiving, accepting, and loving an offender. Note this element in his Prodigal Son story where the father does not demand a sacrifice, restitution, or repayment before forgiving and fully accepting/loving the wayward son. All such conditions were brushed aside by the father. No conditions love meant no conditions at all. This teaching is a stunning rejection of the long history of sacrifice/payment as required to appease demanding deity.

I reject, as Jesus appears to have done, the old theology that God as ultimate Goodness and Love is held to a lesser standard of love than we are held to. I reject the belief that God remembers all wrongs and can demand conditions before forgiving, while we are told that authentic love, for us, means “keeping no record of wrongs” for some future making-of-things-right. Our love is to be without condition because that is actually how God loves. And it is the unconditional nature of forgiveness and love that constitute the greatness and glory of these features, not the conditions of religious holiness or honor mythology with its prerequisite demands that offenders first make things right.

Unfortunately, Paul refused the new theology of Jesus and retreated back to the traditional conditional theology of a punitive God that demanded full payment for sin before forgiving anyone. We inherited Paul’s version of Christianity with its orientation toward punitive and conditional treatment of others. Note the clear New Testament statements that requisite payment is essential to the Christian gospel. The book of Hebrews (chapter 9), for example, states that “without the shedding of blood (sacrifice) there is no forgiveness”. The book of Romans (chapters 3-5) states that there is only salvation (“saved from wrath”) after the condition of a blood payment/sacrifice has been fulfilled.

And of course, in this life people should learn to be responsible for their behavior, to make amends for wrongs done, and to pay their debts. That is all part of normal human development and growth. This is never in question, but it has no part of the new unconditional theology of Jesus. It has no place in authentic divine love. Our love, just like God’s love, is not to be conditional on anything done, or not done, by others.

Note: The theology of Jesus is not a prescriptive model for economic/commercial relationships in this world. Jesus was speaking to ultimate realities and the atonement mythology of his era. Further, my reference to “Historical Jesus” is not an appeal to him as some special religious authority on these issues. I refer to him simply because he continues to be revered as a notable religious icon. The unconditional love being argued here is a “self-validating” reality. It is good in and of itself.

And I would emphasize the larger religious context to these themes- for example, the profound contradiction that exists between the core message of Historical Jesus in the “Q Wisdom Sayings gospel”, and Paul’s Christ myth (the oxymoronic Christian “Jesus Christ”). These two contrary gospels illustrate the profound contradiction between the themes of unconditional and conditional, non-retaliation and retaliation, non-punitive/non-destructive and punitive/destructive, among other contrasting features. See “The Christian Contradiction” in sections below.

11. Old story theme: The belief that retribution or payback is true justice (i.e. eye for eye), based on the myth that God is a retributive reality that demands the reward of the good and the punishment of the bad. The myth that a retributive God demands full punishment of sin. This hurt for hurt theology, or pain returned for pain caused, still under-girds much thinking on justice today. It is often framed as the practical need to present the punishment of offenders as a warning to others, to serve as a deterrence example for the general public. Psychology now recognizes that such punitive approaches do not work with criminal offenders or children. Punitive response to human imperfection and failure “does not teach alternative humane behaviors”. Instead, punitive justice re-enforces retaliatory cycles.

New story alternative: Again, unconditional love keeps no record of wrongs, it does not obsess over imperfection, and it forgives all freely and without limit (“seventy times seven” which is to say- unlimited). But yes, there are natural and social consequences to bad behavior in this world. All of us are to be accountable and responsible for our choices and actions. This is essential to human development in this life. But all justice in response to human failure should be restorative or rehabilitative.

As Leo Tolstoy wrote regarding the criminal justice system, “The whole trouble is that people think there are circumstances when one may deal with human beings without love, but no such circumstances ever exist. Human beings cannot be handled without love. It cannot be otherwise, because mutual love is the fundamental law of human life.”

Added note: Yes, there is value in remembering past bad behavior, and the outcomes of such behavior, as a warning to others. The Holocaust is a signature example of this value. But we remember the bad behavior of others in a larger context of consciously forgiving, with an orientation to restorative justice that is victim-centered (i.e. fully deals with restitution issues). Simon Wiesenthal’s “Justice, Not Vengeance” illustrates the struggle for balance regarding these concerns.

12. Old story theme: The myth of future or “after-life” judgment, exclusion, punishment, and destruction (Hell). The fear of after-life harm is the “primal human fear” (Michael Grosso). Myths of after-life harm have added a magnitude-of-order intensification of fear to the already burdensome fear of death that many people carry.

(Insert: Why bother with speculation about such unknowable realities as after-life reality? Why not just dismiss or ignore these unprovable metaphysical issues? Well, because the speculation has already been done by major belief systems and religions across history and across all the cultures of the world. Pathology- bad mythology like the horrific myth of hell- already exists in human consciousness and ignoring it does nothing to solve the problems that the pathology causes- i.e. unnecessary fear, anxiety, guilt, shame. While all after-life theorizing may be considered speculative, we can at least offer more humane alternatives with healthier parameters that eliminate unnecessary worry regarding death, while also focusing human orientation toward full involvement with here-and-now reality.)

New story alternative: Again, remember the baseline ideal- that authentic love is unconditional and does not demand the fulfilment of conditions. Unconditional love does not threaten ultimate exclusion or punishment. It embraces everyone with the same scandalous mercy and unlimited generosity. It gives sun and rain to all, to both good and bad. All- both good and evil- are ultimately safe and included in the love of an unconditional God. Such love scandalizes the mind that is oriented to ultimate (or after-life) conditional payback justice, or “deserved” punishment.

Illustration: Note again the stories that Jesus told of good, moral people who were offended by the unconditional generosity and love that was shown by, for example, the vineyard owner and the father of the prodigal son. The all-day vineyard workers and the older brother in the prodigal story were upset because, in their view, such unconditional mercy and generosity was not “fair or moral”. It was not proper justice, in their eyes. Other “righteous” people were also offended and scandalized by Jesus when he invited local outcasts and scoundrels to meals with them. He did not respect the proper tribal boundaries between good and bad people, between true believers and unbelievers. He was too scandalously universal and unconditional.

The Jesus stories point to the conclusion that God is unconditional love and hence there will be no after-life harm. We all die as a return back into the stunning “no conditions Love” that is our origin and final home. We are all safe in that Love (i.e. again, sun and rain are indiscriminately and generously given to all alike, to both good and bad people). We are never separated from that Love, no matter what we experience or suffer in this life.

Insert: It helps to maintain the important distinction between Ultimate Reality and life in this imperfect world. We can recognize the ultimate reality of God as absolutely no conditions Love but not deny the reality of natural and social consequences in this life. The need to take personal responsibility for behavior is critical to human learning and development. Love here and now is responsible to restrain violence and to protect the innocent, even with force. But our embrace of the ideal of ultimate unconditional love will orient our treatment of human failure and offense away from punitive approaches and toward restorative approaches. An unconditional attitude will recognize that, no matter how unconditional reality offends and scandalizes common views of required payback justice, all of us return safely to the same no conditions Love that birthed us and is our final home. We are all one family, and return safely to that Oneness, despite our diverse failures to live as fully human in this world.

Add here that self-judgment and self-punishment are the most devastating experiences that human persons can embrace and endure (Note: We recognize exceptions to this such as psychopathy which may also result from genetic deformity, as well as early life trauma). Most people do not need further threat of ultimate judgment and punishment from some greater reality.

13. Old story theme: The myth of a hero messiah that will use superior force (“coercive purification”) to overthrow enemies, to purge the world of evil, and to bring in a promised utopia. This myth provides the incitement and validation to abandon the historical process of gradual improvement (via creative human freedom and endeavor) and to opt for coercive totalitarian approaches. Hero messiah mythology affirms the demand for overwhelming revolutionary violence that seeks to instantly purge some “corrupt” entity that is viewed as the threat to others or to life, and then re-install some lost paradise.

We saw this resort to “violent force against an enemy”, backed by appeal to an all-powerful warrior deity, recently with ISIS in Syria (i.e. the struggle to bring on the final annihilation/Armageddon battle and then in the name of God coercively spread the caliphate across the world). We have also seen the same violence in the name of a crusading hero God throughout Jewish history (Old Testament) and Christian history (Crusades, Inquisitions, persecution of heretics, all appealed to forceful, violent deity for affirmation).

The embrace of revolutionary violence in the name of God arises from the behavior/belief relationship- that people across history have based their behavior on their beliefs about deity. As Harold Ellens says, “If your God uses force, then so may you, to get your way against your ‘enemies’”.

Again, the great ideals that we embrace will shape our thinking, our feeling, and our responses/behavior. We become just like the God that we believe in. Bad myths like coercive, destroying deity have repeatedly incited people to violent, destructive action, to act as the agents of their violent, destructive God to destroy some enemy and save something that was believed to be under dire and imminent threat from that enemy. Far too often across history the belief in divine violent force has been misappropriated to validate unnecessary harshness and cruelty toward fellow human beings.

This idea of an intervening, over-powering deity is hard to dislodge from people’s minds. Even notable atheists fall back on this idea, as Larry King said to Norm MacDonald years ago, “I can no longer believe in God because of the horrible things that happen to innocent children and God is omnipotent, isn’t he?”. Meaning that God should have intervened with power to prevent such things (the “Why imperfection exists?” issue).

New story alternative (see also “16th bad idea” below): A God of authentic love does not intervene with overwhelming force that overrides human freedom and choice. Further, a non-intervening deity helps to understand the gradualism necessary for improving life. It is entirely up to humanity to make the world a better place, in all ways, and to do so while respecting the freedom of others to differ from us.

This is to say that there is no hero messiah, no tribal deity that will intervene with superior force to conquer some enemy of ours and grant us our vision of a paradise with our enemies excluded as per the vision of Revelation where unbelievers are cast out to suffer eternal rejection and punishment.

Note: This point recognizes the valid need at times for police/military to use legal force to restrain irrational violence. The legitimate use of force is to be distinguished from illegitimate uses of force based on inhumane mythology, notably the use of force by religious extremists. Examples include ISIS and the sorry history of Christian violence against fellow Christians that disagreed over theological issues, often very minor disagreements. Note, for example, the shameful incident of Calvin putting his fellow Christian theologian, Servetus, to death over the placement of an adjective in a sentence.

14. Old story theme: The fallacy of Biblicism, the myth that religious holy books are more special and authoritative than ordinary human literature, and that people are obligated to live according to the holy book as the will, law, or word of God. This myth argues that people must submit to divine conditions, or some heavenly model, as outlined by their holy book.

New story alternative: We evaluate all human thought and writing according to basic criteria of right and wrong, good and bad, or humane and inhumane, as agreed upon in common human rights codes, constitutions, or moral codes. Holy books are not exempted from this process of discernment between good and bad.

Further, our highest authority is our own personal consciousness of right and wrong as tuned by, again, common understanding of such things in widely adopted human rights codes and constitutions that are embraced by the entire human family.

15. Old story theme: The myth of God as King, Ruler, Lord, or Judge. The idea that God relates vertically to humanity in domination/submission forms of relating.

New story alternative: There is no domination/subservience relationship of humanity to God. Jesus expressed the divine ideal when he said, “Whoever wants to be great among you must be your servant”. True greatness is to serve the other and not to dominate or control others. The greatness of God is exhibited in serving, not existing above to rule or dominate. God is not “above” humanity but has incarnated in all people as equals. God relates horizontally to humanity.

This is another stunning correction to traditional God theories.

We see the presence of this street-level God in all daily, mundane human goodness and love expressed toward others, especially toward enemies, which is the highest expression of authentic love or goodness. When we love unconditionally, we tower in stature as maturely human. We become the hero of our story and conquer our real monster and enemy, the animal inheritance that is within each of us. See the story outline of Joseph Campbell in sections below.

This portrayal of God as an egalitarian or equality advocate, and not a superior controlling entity, is more of the stunning new theology of Jesus. He is saying in effect, if you think that I am an incarnation of God, a son of God, then I will tell you just what God is like. God does not dominate people like a lord, king, or ruler. God relates to all as equals, serving others, and not lording over them. That is the true greatness of God, or anyone- to serve. As an equal.

This comment of Jesus overturns the entire history of human thinking on gods as dominating realities, lords, kings, rulers. One of the earliest and most primitive of all myths is that “humans were created to serve the gods”, to do their will and work, to provide food for them. Jesus overturned that primitive thinking that divine/human relationships were domination/subservience relationships. He said that type of thinking belongs to primitive people (“the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them”). But if you want to be a great human being, a hero, then you should not dominate or control others. That is the secret to true greatness. To honor the freedom and self-determination of all others as true equals.

16. Old story theme: The idea that humanity is obligated to know, serve, and have some relationship with an invisible reality (deity), to give primary loyalty to something outside of and above people (i.e. a law, will, or word of God). This loyalty to something other than real people has often led to neglect and abuse of people.

New story alternative: Our primary loyalty is to love and serve people around us. Their needs, here and now, take priority in life.

(17) A 17th Old Story theme: Absent deity (related to the earlier theme, in the list above, of a hero-messiah that will intervene to save)

One of humanity’s greatest frustrations has been the apparent “the silence of God” across history. The Holocaust is the iconic example of this traumatizing silence of God.

Where was God when natural disasters took hundreds of thousands of lives? Where was God when human cruelty went unhindered during mass-death movements? Such apparent absence should put to rest the common religious myth of a miraculously intervening God. The evidence has long been final that there never was any such thing as a supernaturally intervening deity that would, for example, violate natural law or overrule human choice and action, in order to protect or rescue people.

What then should we conclude? God is good but powerless to help humanity? Or the atheists are right that there is no God? No. I would offer that the evidence simply urges us to rethink the great question of how God relates to this world. Theologies like “Panentheism” (not Pantheism) are wrestling with this issue.

And some versions of the Deist’s alternative are not much better than atheism. God is not the absent Creator who starts the whole thing running and then disappears off to some far away heaven to wait and watch as natural law works throughout life.

A new theory or theology is emerging that argues that God has incarnated in all humanity. God did not incarnate only in special ‘holy’ persons like the Christian Jesus. Rather, God has incarnated in all humanity in an inseparable oneness with the common human spirit or human consciousness. The human spirit has gradually emerged and developed as more humane across history. This maturing of humanity is evident in the trends to decreasing violence, more democratic societies, and generally improved human well-being (the improvement of all areas of life).

And as Bob Brinsmead notes, the improvement in life has been a long, slow process of gradually developing understanding, growing problem-solving ability, and practical solutions. It has, for instance, taken millennia for us to understand disease and come up with medical cures. See the gradualism arguments in Arthur Mendel’s “Vision and Violence”.

We see this common human spirit, or God spirit, emerging and developing in all human goodness, whether expressed in commerce, art, sports, medicine, agriculture, entertainment, and all areas where people contribute to making life better and just having fun while doing so.

As some have stated, we are the voice, hands, and feet of God in this world.

Conclusion? God has never been silent or absent. There has never been a ‘Sky God’ up above the world in some heaven, above and outside of humanity, doing things to the world and to people from outside (the “yoyo God”, coming down to intervene in some way and then returning to heaven). To the contrary, God has always been within all things as the creating Sustainer of all reality, and especially within the human family. This means that God is evident in all human misery and raging against suffering and evil. God is always present in all human action to prevent evil, to solve problems, and to improve life. Just as God has always been present in humanity and expressed in all good and useful human endeavor. This means it has always been our responsibility to prevent wrong and to promote good/right in our world. Yes, it is up to us. We must stop looking to the heavens for what is right here and now, in us.

Add this feature to your theology- God is at our very core, as the human impulse to love, to be something better. God is inseparably united with the love that defines us at our best. God is at the core of the real or authentic human self and is evident in the human impulse to be more humane as expressed in all human goodness.

Conclusion? God has always been closer to us than our own breath or atoms. God has never been absent or silent when people have suffered from natural disaster or human cruelty. Religious mythology has never framed this immanent feature properly. The immanence of deity speaks to the fundamental “oneness” behind all things. Even quantum mechanics points to this foundational oneness feature of reality.

The confusion here over silent deity also has to do with the element of freedom or the inseparable relationship of love and freedom. God, as love, does not coercively overwhelm the independence, self-determination, and freedom of others. Better, God respects human freedom profoundly and influences with gentle, quiet impulses to do the right thing, what we feel is right (i.e. God “persuades” and does not coerce).

Part of the human confusion over how God relates to this world has to do with our inability to grasp that divine Love prizes freedom highly and will not overwhelm or violate it. Authentic moral goodness emerges only from authentic freedom of choice. Such love entails great risk as authentically free people may choose wrongly. The upside is that nothing in life is pre-planned or predestined. We are free to create our own unique story, to become the heroes of our own life adventure. And there is nothing more heroic than choosing no conditions love, for even the enemy, as the supreme height of human achievement. Then we tower in stature like a Nelson Mandela.

Note: The above comments relate to one of the options offered in Jewish “Protest Theology” that emerged after the Holocaust (i.e. the idea of God willing/choosing to not intervene in human freedom). Others have suggested that, as spirit, God cannot intervene in material reality, aside from gentle suasion on the human spirit and consciousness.

And of course, aside from these points, there are still the myriad unexplainable and fascinating “coincidences” scattered through personal human stories that we may either view as just random, or the work of Providence. Interesting that people tend to explain good coincidences as Providence, but not so much the bad ones.

Added discussion group post from Bob Brinsmead: “____, many thanks for sending the link to this great Wikipedia article on Process Theology. I would have to say that I agree with the main thrust of the thesis.

“To say that God could have stopped the Holocaust but refrained from stopping it is very unsatisfactory to me. I agree with the argument of the PROCESS theologians here. If God is committed to love, then God is committed to human freedom. God can use persuasion but not coercion of the human will. Love would not allow God to do something that was inhuman (interfere, coerce, etc.). If you look at history and daily experience, there is no other conclusion that seems to be either logically or ethically possible. It is also hard to see God acting contrary to the laws of nature or the laws of physics.”

18. One more Old Story Theme, New Story Alternative to add to the list

While human selfishness and greed are present in any approach to life, these features do not most essentially define industrial civilization and its outcomes. Collectivists have argued that the free individual model that developed over past centuries in England (i.e. the “Classic Liberalism” that protected the individual rights and freedom of all citizens, equally) orients populations to destructive selfishness, greed, disconnect from nature, and violence, among other pathology. But that is not generally true. More importantly, with the fundamental protection of private property rights, the free individual model has unleashed human creativity as never before to achieve unimaginable new heights in the improvement of all aspects of our lives, and the world in general (increased environmental improvement).

Now the Old story theme related to this: The myth of the moral and spiritual superiority of the simple lifestyle with low consumption (i.e. self-produced, using only local resources). This relates to “noble savage” mythology, the belief that primitive hunter/gatherers were more pure and environmentally conservative before humanity “fell” and became corrupted in developing civilization, falling even further in the last few centuries of industrial civilization with its ever-growing abundance. This myth fosters endless guilt and shame over consumption and the enjoyment of the good life. “Small is Beautiful” by Schumacher was an affirmation of this mythology. Note that it is most often wealthy Western elites that advocate this “morally superior primitivism” lifestyle for poorer people in developing areas (more “Rules for thee but not for me”).

New story alternative: The search for a better life is the fundamental urge of love- to responsibly improve one’s life and the state of one’s family. And it is the free choice of people to enjoy what they wish to use and enjoy. The abundance that most people enjoy today, with an ever-increasing proportion of humanity moving into middle class status, is part of the larger trajectory of developing technological, industrial civilization that is also lessening environmental impacts while it increases human well-being.

For example, the trend of continuing world urbanization is concentrating more people in smaller and more efficient spaces- e.g. economies of scale- that lessen pressure on natural areas (see population expert Julian Simon’s “Ultimate Resource” for detail). Industrial society further decreases per capita consumption of varied resources with ongoing technological development (the process of “de-materialization”). Thus, the general creation of wealth has also enabled more developed areas to better care for and improve their environments. This overturns the environmental alarmist argument that industrial society is “destroying the world”. See “Environmental transition” research, for example, by Indur Goklany. Also, Desrocher and Szurmak’s “Population Bombed”. Humanprogress.org is another good source of information.

Added note: There is no finalized consensus on how much of the natural world humans can engage, use, and change. We are a legitimate species and not an intruding “virus or cancer” as per the view of those who want a mostly untouched wilderness world. And from today’s progressing industrial civilization note the emerging trends like ‘peak agriculture’ and the return of agricultural lands to nature because with safe GM crop inputs, we produce more crops on the same or less land. Note also the improving status of world forests over the past seven decades (FAO reports on increasing world forest cover), and the strengthening of conservation and restoration trends in world fisheries (Ray Hilborn research, University of Washington). Further, there is no species holocaust occurring. It appears the “responsible stewardship” approach of the early 20th Century conservationists is working (see Alston Chase’s “In A Dark Wood”).

As Julian Simon said, “Evidence on the big picture and long-term trends of life shows that we are more creators than destroyers”.

Added notes: There is a long history of belief in the moral/spiritual superiority of the ascetic lifestyle and engendering guilt over enjoying the good life too much (the good life viewed in terms of selfishness, greed, the “base” obsession with materialism). Note past history’s cloistered mystics, wandering holy men, and sages, begging for their daily needs. Those “holiness exhibited in simple living” cults are found in Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, and elsewhere.

Varied other beliefs play into the fear of consumption such as the fallacy of “limited good” that anthropology notes in hunter/gatherer societies where people believe that if some people in the group get more, then others must be getting less, as there are limited resources to go around. But the evidence, while at first seeming counter-intuitive, comes down on the side of ever-expanding human resources across history. “Cornucopians” like Julian Simon were right.

Simon (Ultimate Resource) has outlined the steps in the process that results in the expansion or increase in resource stocks: Within traditional production there may emerge an apparent scarcity of some resource. This leads to increasing prices for that resource. That prompts the search for more reserves of the resource, the search for technology that leads to more efficient production and use of the resource, or a search for alternatives to the resource (i.e. the shift from whale oil to fossil fuels). And ultimately there is a return to the trajectory of lowering the price of the resource. We saw the process above operating with the discovery of fracking technology and the opening of vast new sources of fossil fuels in the US.

Added note to Old Story themes: Holiness mythology

One of the most common responses from religious people to the idea of God as no conditions love is that God is also holy and just and therefore must punish all wrong. God’s honor is tarnished by the wrongdoing of people so he must be just (exhibit strict eye for eye retaliation) and punish all sin. God cannot just freely forgive and love. But this divine holiness myth is primitivism at its worst. How so? It is the very same reasoning that is behind practices like “honor killing”. People in varied cultures today still reason that, for example, a daughter embracing modern habits has dishonored her family and their traditional culture. So the dishonored males are required to punish the “evil” daughter in order to restore their tarnished honor. Holiness theology is embracing this very same primitive reasoning that wrongs must be punished thoroughly or justice and honor are not restored properly. I would counter that unconditional forgiveness and love is the true glory of God, the highest goodness and love. Authentic goodness and love will just forgive without demanding payment or righting of wrongs first.

The holiness feature in theology affirms the myth of God obsessed with perfection and punishing imperfection, hence the creation of a supporting complex of myths- i.e. original paradise/Eden (perfect creation), Fall of humanity and ruin of paradise (loss of perfection), and the subsequent need for an atonement (sacrifice/payment/punishment) in order to restore the lost perfection.

Added note to “Old Story Themes, New Story Alternatives”

The alternative new story themes include a “spiritual” element. This simply affirms what most of humanity across history, and most people today, understand and embrace (the 85% of humanity affiliated with a world religion, with most of the remaining 15% claiming to be “unaffiliated” or “spiritual but not religious”). Humanity in general has always understood that greater or Ultimate Reality (Ultimate meaning) is about more than just energy, natural law, quantum fields, multiple-dimensions, or Self-Organizing Principle as the creating Force of philosophical materialism.

Most human beings across history have intuitively understood that greater Reality has to do with Mind, Consciousness, Self/Personhood, Spirit, or Intelligence. Note that you do not have Consciousness or Mind without personality. Further, the early quantum theorists recognized the foundational Consciousness/Mind element also in their conclusion that their new science pointed to the universe as more “a great Thought than a machine”.

Personal note:

I saw the urologist today for biopsy results on my prostate (PSA had risen from around 3-4 up to 8.9 over 2021, and he also found a hard lump in my prostate). He said, “I have your pathology report” and at that moment he sounded a bit pathological to me. Heh, heh.

“Yes”, he said, “you have prostate cancer” and on the “Gleason score” its about a 7, in the fairly aggressive zone. So removal is the next step in about 4-6 weeks. But some bone scans first to see if it has spread, and CT scans to see if there are any signs of spread elsewhere.

When I got home a vulture was flying up above (local turkey vultures). I thought to myself, “What does he know that I don’t?”.

I am consciously observing the daily maneuverings of my mental states see if “the prospect of one’s death wonderfully focuses the mind”.

I also asked the doctor about the final stages of prostate cancer and pain. He admitted that if it spreads to bones then it could be painful but opiods would help with that.

And then I suggested, “Well, at least we have MAID here in Canada (medical assistance in dying)”. He responded, “Well, let’s not go there yet”.

On the drive home I got any blubbery feelings out of the way because I wanted to appear strong for my wife and family when I broke the news to them.

I do not fear death itself but like most people I am concerned about the dying process and possible pain/suffering. But drugs and MAID offer resolutions there.

Another concern was the nerves that run alongside the prostate and down to the penis and are involved in sexual function. The urologist said, “We do ‘nerve sparing surgery’” and that those nerves are “brushed aside” when the prostate is removed, but if cancer has spread then preserving sexual function would not be his main concern. The main goal is removing all the cancer.

And we have Viagra and other options, he added. Hey, I am only 72 (body age) but feel around 40ish on the horniness scale. I know- time to grow up and act my age.

Incontinence is another concern as two of the three sphincters along the urethra are removed with the prostate, leaving only one functioning sphincter. Again, doc said there are helps with that. Maybe just attends.

And on the drive home I became aware of the uncomfortable feeling of having rot inside me. Right at the core of the male sexual organs, the core of my body. Damn.

On the “prospect of one’s demise wonderfully focusing the mind”- since the cancer reveal I’ve noticed a re-emerging awareness of the pettiness in regard to things that I often think about and spend time on. A sense of “Don’t waste time” on such. But that is the mundane and ordinary nature of so much of human life. We should not apologize for experiencing the full range of the pettiness of being human at times, in thoughts, emotions, or activities that are less than some higher ideals.

Further, years ago I got over beating myself up over personal failure. I recognize such personal failure (contrasted with the ideals I hold) as immediately as possible, own it fully, make things right where necessary, and re-enforce the intention to do better moving forward, improving a little bit at a time. Gradualism.

The growing concern, now, is family and how this will impact them, in so many ways.

Regarding my beliefs about life, death, and the transition to the “beyond”… this site contains a “buffet” of comment on such issues (in Swedish- “smorgasbord”).

And like a friend who endured breast cancer years ago, joking and laughing through the entire ordeal, I intend to keep laughing, laughing in the face of death. Like the dying man in a Paris hotel room who wanted to go out on a joke. His final comment, “Either that wallpaper goes or I do” and then breathed his last breath.

But as the doctor said, lets not go there yet till we know how things really are.

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“There is no climate emergency… There is no cause for panic”

The “climate crisis” movement is a “profoundly religious” crusade, impervious to contrary scientific fact on climate. And that is the true “denialism” in this climate issue. So please end the projection of one’s faults on to others. Detail in sections below.

The critical core issue in the climate debate?- The physics of CO2 and its warming influence (i.e. its logarithmically declining influence on climate warming with rising levels in the atmosphere, and the evidence that CO2 is just a “bit player” among a complex of other natural factors that more dominantly influence the natural climate change that we have experienced over past decades and centuries). See especially the research of climate physicists Richard Lindzen and William Happer, among others below.

This worth a repeat, from…

https://www.aei.org/carpe-diem/there-is-no-climate-emergency-say-500-experts-in-letter-to-the-united-nations/

“There Is No Climate Emergency, Say 500 Experts in Letter to the United Nations.

“A global network of more than 500 knowledgeable and experienced scientists and professionals in climate and related fields have the honor to address Your Excellencies and attached European Climate Declaration, for which the signatories to this letter are the national ambassadors. The general-circulation models of climate on which international policy is at present founded are unfit for their purpose.

“Therefore, it is cruel as well as imprudent to advocate the squandering of trillions of dollars on the basis of results from such immature models. Current climate policies pointlessly and grievously undermine the economic system, putting lives at risk in countries denied access to affordable, reliable electrical energy. We urge you to follow a climate policy based on sound science, realistic economics, and genuine concern for those harmed by costly but unnecessary attempts at mitigation.”

Points made by the climate experts:

“1. Natural as well as anthropogenic factors cause warming.

“2. Warming is far slower than predicted.

“3. Climate policy relies on inadequate models.

“4. CO2 is not a pollutant. It is a plant food that is essential to all life on Earth. Photosynthesis is a blessing. More CO2 is beneficial for nature, greening the Earth: additional CO2 in the atmosphere has promoted growth in global plant biomass. It is also good for agriculture, increasing the yields of crops worldwide.

“5. Global warming has not increased natural disasters.

“6. Climate policy must respect scientific and economic realities.

“7. There is no climate emergency. Therefore, there is no cause for panic.”

This on heatwaves from…

A Very Serious Consequence of Climate Change–Sadiq Khan

Quotes:

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, put out a warning regarding the recent Met Office prediction of a coming heatwave in England that would perhaps reach the high 30s (Centigrade). Khan claimed that “this is potentially dangerous and a very serious consequence of climate change”.

But Paul Homewood (above link) responded with the following points:

“There is no evidence whatsoever that the heatwave is a “consequence” of climate change. It is a weather event, one which is the direct result of an extremely rare set of meteorological conditions…

“To label it as “potentially dangerous” is also irresponsible scaremongering, given that millions of Brits fly out to Spain and other countries, where temperatures are regularly much higher…

“While Khan is playing political games with climate change, I would ask whether he ever puts out red warnings every winter when it gets cold. Surely he knows that many more people die in the cold of winter?…

“And that death tolls in summer are always the lowest of any season, heatwaves or not.”

This is where Justin Trudeau and Joe Biden, with their embrace of Green extremism, want to take Canada and the US:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2022/07/12/heatwave-hysteria-epitomises-tories-fatal-embrace-nanny-statism/

Laura Dodsworth on hysterical media reporting (promoting “climate change” alarmism)…

Media now intentionally work to create hysteria over normal weather patterns, like naturally warm summers and hot spells. This is done to alarm populations with the climate apocalypse narrative of Green extremism. Laura Dodsworth comments on this at Twitter and elsewhere. (Note, for example, “The weather forecast is…. Nudging to Net Zero” in the latest “Net Zero Watch” newsletter, July 13, 2022)

Dodsworth describes the new trend in weather reporting that frames normal warm summer weather now as something “exceptional and dangerous”, all in service of pushing the climate alarmism narrative and its decarbonization policies.

She concludes with the far greater threat from cold weather and how this is ignored…

“Over the last five winters the number of excess winter deaths (in England) due to living in a cold home is estimated to be approximately 10,000 per year. Do you think that as the country edges towards freezing temperatures this winter, the Met Office will issue warnings about elderly pensioners dying under blankets in cold homes? Making a forecast of my own, I predict that it won’t.”

A dominant media trend today (climate alarmism media)- panic-mongering over normal summer weather:

https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/19193074/heatwave-britain-weather-warning/

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Net Zero Watch is the newsletter of the Global Warming Policy Forum.

This from Andrew Orlowski: “Boris Johnson, the Net Zero zealot”, Spiked, July 10, 2022

“After his surrender to green ideology, no government has ever imposed so many burdens on so many as that of Boris Johnson.

“His greatest failure was entirely unforced – namely, his capitulation to apocalyptic environmentalism, the pagan religion of our age.

“And today, with domestic heating bills trebling, fuel poverty going through the roof and swathes of UK industry facing the prospect of closing for good, the obsession with reducing carbon emissions looks ever more foolish.

“Should we be surprised that Boris went full Greta, and threw his lot in with people who glue their faces to electric trains? Perhaps not. To argue that climate change can be addressed through adaptation rather than mitigation – by building bigger sea defences, for example, rather than radical lifestyle changes – requires courage. It requires challenging the bureaucracy, the academy and the broadcast media. There are only a handful of critics who even attempt that today,

“In his resignation speech, Johnson said he hoped his successor would continue ‘cutting burdens on businesses and families’. Which is more than a little ironic. After his surrender to green ideology, no government has ever imposed so many burdens on so many as that of Boris Johnson.”

This from Eric Worrall:

Claim: Republicans Need to See Evidence of Climate Change Harms

“For example, claims of climate harm look very shaky in the context of NASA’s evidence the world is greening. To date, adding CO2 to the atmosphere has been beneficial, and has increased plant growth rates across the entire planet.

“What about possible future global warming?

“The evidence from much warmer periods in the past demonstrates that primates and other mammals thrive in very warm conditions. Our primate ancestors thrived and spread across the planet during the Eocene Thermal Maximum, one of the warmest periods in the paleo record – a period which may have been as much as 14F (8C) warmer than today. Primates thrived during past periods of extreme global warming. If our small-brained monkey ancestors figured out how to thrive during past periods of extreme global warming, I’m pretty confident big-brained Humans could figure it out.

“The evidence of current global greening, and the evidence of past abundance during warm periods, is quite a mountain to climb, for those who wish to persuade evidence-based decision makers that a mere 1.5-2C of warming is a climate crisis.”

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Understand the root themes of the environmental religion

Section topics further below:
Green policies ruining societies,
The real “righteous battle” of life takes place inside each of us,
Endless eruptions of hysterical outrage,
YouTube discussion- Jordan Peterson with Africa Brooke,
All human beings are imperfect- forgiveness in our stories,
Metaphysical basis of equality?,
Posts to old friends on climate facts,
One post on some features of the dying process (personal story),
The SEC disclosure rule and the Lindzen/Happer (climate physicists) exposure of the unscientific basis of the rule,
True egalitarianism,
Study: Cold in China kills 45 times as many people as heat,
Pushback against ESG undemocratic infiltration of the business world,
Joseph Campbell’s insights on human development,
Bjorn Lomborg on cold killing far more people than heat,
Defining themes of profoundly religious crusades like climate alarmism,
Scientist Lennart Bengtsson: “There is no climate crisis”.

Green policies ruining societies with the decarbonization crusade, Wendell Krossa

An apocalyptic/millennial narrative, a doom story, has possessed our world. The story of “climate crisis”. And despite claims of climate alarmists that their story is scientific, it is actually thoroughly anti-science, a quite profoundly religious story, no different from myriad similar apocalyptic stories across human history that also led societies to self-inflicted ruin (see, for example, Richard Landes’ “Heaven On Earth” for detail). Read the rest of the opening comment here

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“We (humanity) are more creators than destroyers”, Julian Simon

Section topics below:

The insanity of endless apocalyptic alarmism;

Father of modern environmentalism, James Lovelock’s late-in-life apology and rejection of climate alarmism;

The cost of opposing and restricting US fossil fuel resources;

Climate alarmism: A profoundly religious crusade based on unscientific/mythical assumptions;

Site splainin: Explaining my persistent focus on the single greatest breakthrough insight of humanity re unconditional reality (the cohering center of a new meta-narrative);

Project: Basic themes of a new meta-narrative;

ESG ideology dominating financial institutions and ruining economies;

Encourage empathy: The irresponsible panic-mongering over natural climate change is traumatizing and destroying the lives of children (loss of hope, nothing to live for, no future), so think about and try to feel what you are doing to children with exaggerated climate alarmism;

Origins of apocalypse myth (Notes on Pfeiffer’s “Explosion: Inquiry into the Origins of Art and Religion”);

Media obsession with affirming the climate apocalypse narrative;

The true state of climate;

Some of the 6,000 essential products based on crude oil derivatives, many essential to human well-being;

Great Replacement Theory;

My Jefferson/Tolstoy view of the New Testament (only for those not afraid of a blunt assessment of Christianity);

The liberating potency of love in alleviating fear;

Affirming love in human life (the great discovery of unconditional);

End the panic-mongering- free people from fear; and more…

Endless exaggerated alarmism distorts the true state of life on Earth. Alarmists frame even manageable problems with exaggerated extremist terms like “catastrophe, existential crisis, looming disaster” and this distorts our understanding of the real nature of those problems. Note this in regard to the mild warming that we have experienced over the past century- roughly 1 degree C warming in a still too cold world where 10 times more people die every year from cold than die from warmth. As for extreme weather events- heat waves, droughts, storms, floods- they have not become more frequent or severe and even the IPCC admits this. Yet this normal, natural climate change has been seized upon by apocalyptic prophets as portending the end of the world.

Alarmism has become a shrill note in the background of daily life, bleating mainly through news media, and dangerously inciting the survival impulse in populations. That aroused fear opens people to irrationality in response to life’s problems, making them susceptible to irrational salvation schemes like decarbonization. Alarmed people readily fall for scam saviors that promise to lead them out of purported danger and into a restored “lost original paradise” or some millennial utopia.

We counter the endlessly erupting alarmism of our current age by seeking good data sources on the main indicators of the world- i.e. soils, forests, land species, ocean species, the atmosphere, etc.- indicators that inform us about the true state of life. Julian Simon gave us the template on how to do this in his brilliant Ultimate Resource. Others followed- Greg Easterbrook in A Moment On Earth, Bjorn Lomborg in Skeptical Environmentalist, Indur Goklany in The Improving State of the World, Desrochers and Szurmak in Population Bombed, and varied others like the folks at Humanprogress.org. They provide good evidence that, while problems remain, we (humanity) have done well in tackling the problems and maintaining life on an improving trajectory toward a better future over the long term. As Julian Simon said, we have done well. Read the rest of the opening comment here

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There are better ways of viewing life… the liberation from fear

Section topics: Patterns in alarmism movements; State of Climate 2021, “A systematic review of climate trends and observational data by an eminent climate scientist has found no evidence to support the claim of a climate crisis”; Notes on the panic over giving everyone freedom of speech; John McWhorter on Woke Racism (Third-wave anti-racism is not Martin Luther King’s anti-racism and is harmful to blacks); The problem with mythical and religious explanations of greater or ultimate Reality (a defense of the “spiritual” as critical to the human search for meaning); Doug Murray on War on the West, and more…

More on ‘The big picture perspective’ of this site, Wendell Krossa

Mythical and religious narrative themes have dominated human consciousness across history and shaped all other thinking in societies, even purportedly non-religious thinking. And this influence of mythical/religious thinking has continued unabated into the present world. Note, just for one example, Einstein’s repeated religious responses to Niels Bohr in their back-and-forth discussion of quantum mechanics (source: “Quantum: Einstein, Bohr, and the great debate about the nature of reality” by Manjit Kumar). None of us is as “secular, materialist, scientific” as we like to imagine we are. (Note particularly Einstein’s traditionally religious ideas as per his comments that “God does not play dice with the universe… God does not use telepathy…” etc.)

Mythical/religious thinking has profoundly shaped the ideology of Declinism, the most dominant worldview in the modern world- i.e. the belief that life is becoming worse, a notable theme in environmental alarmism, climate alarmism, Woke Progressivism in general, etc. (See Arthur Herman’s “The Idea of Decline in Western History”). Declinism is an essential element in the primitive mythology of apocalyptic.

This site offers some liberating responses to the inherited mythical/religious themes that have too long dominated human worldviews/narratives and consciousness. See “An adventure/quest for ultimate freedom” (“Humanity’s worst ideas, better alternatives”) in a section below.

The alternatives offered, from human insight across history, point to a radical reshaping of humanity’s dominant mythical/religious/secular narratives. The point of such fundamental alteration of narrative themes is the liberation of human consciousness and emotion at the most profound levels of perception, including the level of subconscious ‘archetypes’ (i.e. primal impulses and related validating ideas). Read the rest of the opening comment here

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Valuing the Western contribution to humanity

(Fourth in a series)

The Two Main Approaches to Organizing Human Societies across history- Collectivism versus the free individual Wendell Krossa

Intro

The comment below comes from a “fiercely Independent” viewpoint. Kinda like Goldilocks- not too far Left, not too far Right. Sort of Libertarianish, or better- Classic Liberalism. Floating like a butterfly, free to alight wherever, enjoy the nectar and then move on. A self that is free in an open process and not fixed too rigidly on any “object” (i.e. not finding cemented identity in some immutable ideology, religion, nationality, race/ethnicity, or other objects of human identity). Open and free like ‘The Mutable Self’ of Louis Zurcher.

Independent because while both sides have commendable features and concerns, neither side gets it all right (and this is not “bothsideism”). David Boaz, for example, said regarding the US situation that Republicans needed to embrace more freedom in the social realm and Democrats needed to embrace more freedom in the economic realm. Neither side held a monopoly on good. My ‘Free Floating’ stance also keeps me from the dogmatic tribalism that locks into loyalty to one side only and views the other side as an enemy to be conquered or cancelled.

Interesting note: While some claim that the US Democratic party has previously been more centrist, many on both the Conservative and Liberal sides of the US situation now note that US Democrats/Liberals are being pulled further toward Leftist collectivist ideologies (“Woke Progressivism”). US Republicans continue also to be pulled toward coercive state intervention on social issues (i.e. women’s rights, choices, and freedoms).

The foundations of modern freedom and equality trace back centuries to developing principles that advocated that all people in a society should be treated equally under law (i.e. Magna Carta and earlier documents/practises). Contemporary views on freedom and equality are grounded in beliefs that every person deserves the same rights and protections as all others.

These beliefs include a foundational plank in modern freedom- i.e. protected property rights. That is the principle that you can create or improve something, and if you invest effort/resources in that something, then the resulting outcome of your investment is protected. You will reap the reward of your investment. Elites/powerholders, whether monarchy, lords, or government officials, cannot confiscate the outcome of your creativity and work. The protection of personal property under law is absolutely basic to equality and freedom. Protected property rights unleashed the modern burst of human creativity and progress with outcomes in an immensely improved human condition that we all value.

Balancing both sides and what works best:

(1) The primary orientation to the collective, or (2) a primary orientation to the individual. We never get all that we want on either side of these political divides hence, both sides are obligated out of common decency (“peace and love”) to make some compromise with, basically, what is often the other half of our societies. And there are enough major issues that both sides can agree to cooperate on (e.g. basic health care for all, criminal-justice reform, public safety priority, growing economies/jobs and good income for all, etc.).

The Left/Right or Liberal/Conservative dualism in our societies often becomes infected with the residual tribal impulse that we have inherited from our animal past. The tribal impulse continues to erupt in today’s societies, along with a dose of hardening dogmatism, to the detriment of the necessary cooperation to maintain peace. Fortunately, surveys show that most people on both sides identify with the more moderate/centrist positions on most social issues.

Is there some healthy balance between the free individual approach and the collectivist approach? Our societies continue the multiple-millennia back and forth tug between these two approaches to organizing human societies (see Arthur Herman’s “The Cave and The Light” for the long-term history of this tug-of-war, traced from the Greeks on down through subsequent millennia). It appears that most people will continue to embrace some mixed version of these two approaches that encompasses the concerns of both sides. Read the rest of the opening comment here

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Speculating on the meaning of human life

Third in a series...

I am reposting updated versions of previous essays (i.e. “Humanity’s worst ideas, better alternatives”, “The Christian contradiction”, “Campbell on the meaning of human life”, “Two main approaches to organizing human societies”) because they go to the root themes that incite and validate our baser inherited impulses (i.e. impulses to tribalism, exclusion of differing others, domination/control of others, and punitive destruction of failing others). These primitive mythical themes have persisted across history in religious traditions and now also dominate the “secular” ideological narratives of our modern era (i.e. Declinism being a prominent example. See “The Idea of Decline in Western History” by Arthur Herman).

The alternative ideas offered, from human insight across history, speak to the profound liberation possible- i.e. liberation of mind, consciousness, and spirit at the deepest levels (i.e. subconscious). This liberation then reverberates out to impact all of life and society because we become just like the ultimate ideals/themes that we believe in, the ideals that we embrace to shape our worldviews. The alternatives point us in the direction of authentically humane existence. They show us how to “tower in stature as maturely human” (Joseph Campbell).

The project here is to probe resolutions to problems by dealing with the full complex of root contributing factors behind recurring social issues, notably, the recurrence of irrational apocalyptic themes in destructive movements like climate alarmism.

Speculating with Campbell on the meaning of human life and experience Wendell Krossa

Or: How to tower in stature as maturely human, how to become the hero of your story or quest.

Joseph Campbell said that we all live a “hero’s quest or adventure”. Our lives and life experiences can be understood in terms of “the hero’s journey”. We all live heroic stories of adventure, struggle, suffering, conquest of monsters/problems, disintegration/re-integration, transformation, discovery and gaining insights that benefit others. I have added to Campbell’s basic framework, revising, paraphrasing, and changing some things.

Going right to the point on the big question- What is the greater goal or meaning of human life? Above all else that we might accomplish in life, I would suggest that we are here to learn what love is and how to love. Love is the fundamental reason/purpose for the cosmos, our world, and conscious human life. Read the rest of the opening comment here

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Bad mythology still dominates human consciousness

“The same mythical themes are repeated across all history and across all the cultures (and ideologies/worldviews/belief systems) of the world” (my paraphrase of Joseph Campbell).

What “most” people believe, Wendell Krossa

The point here- It is not just religious people who believe the ideas/themes listed below but also many/most of those who self-identify as “secular… materialist… scientific… even atheist”. Listen to what most people actually say when they explain how they view life on Earth. Their own statements reveal their core belief system.

Most have embraced highly religious worldviews that are shaped by primitive mythical themes (terms change but core themes remain the same old). Because climate alarmism has embraced such themes, it is a profoundly religious crusade. And because this movement views life through a mythological lens, it profoundly distorts the true state of life on Earth. Read the rest of the opening comment here

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Ongoing project: Go to root themes/ideas

Second in reposted series

Over our lifetime we construct a personal worldview because we are driven by our primary impulse for meaning. In constructing our worldview, we embrace ideas that embody/express how we feel, how we understand and explain the world and life. The ideas that we embrace to construct our personal worldview then influence how we respond or act and influence the policies and programs that we support and advocate. We become what we think, whether consciously or subconsciously.

Project:

The essay below continues my reposting of updated versions of previous essays (i.e. “Bad ideas, better alternatives”, “The Christian contradiction”, “Campbell on the meaning of human life”, “Two main approaches to organizing human societies”). These essays cover varied root themes that incite and validate our baser inherited impulses (i.e. impulses to tribalism, exclusion of differing others, domination/control of others, and punitive destruction of failing others). The primitive mythical themes/ideas referred to have persisted across history in religious traditions and now also dominate the “secular” ideological narratives of our modern era (i.e. Declinism being a prominent example- see, for example, “The Idea of Decline in Western History” by Arthur Herman).

The alternative ideas offered, from human insight across history, speak to the profound liberation possible- i.e. liberation of mind, consciousness, and spirit at the deepest levels. Such liberation then reverberates out to impact all of life and society because we become just like the ultimate ideals/themes that we believe in, the ideals that we embrace to shape our worldviews. The alternatives point us in the direction of authentically humane existence. They show us how to “tower in stature as maturely human”, how to become the hero of our story or quest (Joseph Campbell).

The project here is to probe long-term resolutions to problems by dealing with the full complex of root contributing factors behind recurring social issues, notably, the recurrence of apocalyptic themes in movements like, for example, climate alarmism.

Note: The essay below is not about trashing a world religion but about recognizing the influence of history’s most prominent myth (the Christ myth), the primitive features that it embraces, and the impact of the Christ myth and related mythical themes on human consciousness, life, and society.

Intro comments:

Paul’s Christ myth has been the single most influential myth in history (James Tabor in “Paul and Jesus”, among other researchers). The manufactured Christ myth of Paul is primarily responsible for perpetuating the primitive and destructive myth of apocalyptic in Western consciousness. And yes, there is an “anti-Christ” in Christianity but its not who you think it is. Its someone dear and familiar.

(Insert note: “Manufactured Christ myth”? Yes, manufactured through the process of developing Christology where a common historical person is turned into a god. This process has been outlined, for example, by researchers like Maurice Casey in his book “From Jewish prophet to Gentile God: The origins and development of New Testament Christology”. And “destructive myth of apocalyptic”? Yes, see Arthur Mendel’s “Vision and Violence”.)

What’s at stake in challenging the Christ myth? History’s single most profound insight- i.e. that God is a stunning “no conditions” reality. That insight has been buried for two millennia under Paul’s highly conditional Christ myth.

The insight that God is an unconditional reality goes to the root of humanity’s primal fears. This insight demolishes entirely (1) the fear of behind-life harm (i.e. deity punishing people through natural disaster, disease, or human cruelty) and (2) the fear of death and after-life harm (i.e. ultimate rejection, punishment, and destruction in hell). These primal fears have deformed human lives across millennia.

The Christ myth- separating diamonds from dung (revised) Wendell Krossa

The fundamental problem with Paul’s Christ myth was outlined by Thomas Jefferson and Leo Tolstoy. They stated that the Christ of Paul “buried the diamonds/pearls” of Historical Jesus (“Historical Jesus” is the title used to distinguish the actual historical person from the manufactured Christian version- known commonly as “Jesus Christ”). Read the rest of the opening comment here

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Basic climate facts and the false narrative of “climate crisis”

Section topics:

A response to Brian Crowley re embracing the climate alarmism narrative;
“Lunacy, insanity, craziness…” Terms too strong to describe climate alarmism? You read and decide;
The misuse of “misinformation”;
Celebrating CO2 (Craig Idso on the benefits of more CO2);
The global warming “Pause” continues;
The uncertainty of climate measurements;
Climate points;
Notes on climate physics;
The hysterical demonization of CO2;
Uncertainty about Earth’s carbon cycles;
Renewables versus fossil fuels;
And more…

This from the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF)…

“The State of the Climate 2021: Empirical observations show no sign of “climate crisis”

“London, 14 April, 2022 – A systematic review of climate trends and observational data by an eminent climate scientist has found no evidence to support the claim of a climate crisis.

“In his annual State of the Climate report, Ole Humlum, emeritus professor at the University of Oslo, examined detailed patterns in temperature changes in the atmosphere and oceans together with trends in climate impacts.

“Many of these show no significant trends and suggest that poorly understood natural cycles are involved.

“And while the report finds gentle warming, there is no evidence of dramatic changes, with snow cover stable, sea ice levels recovering, and no change in storm activity.

“Professor Humlum said:

“’A year ago, I warned that there was great risk in using computer modelling and immature science to make extraordinary claims. The empirical observations I have reviewed show very gentle warming and no evidence of a climate crisis.”

GWPF director, Dr Benny Peiser said:

“’It’s extraordinary that anyone should think there is a climate crisis. Year after year our annual assessment of climate trends document just how little has been changing in the last 30 years. The habitual climate alarmism is mainly driven by scientists’ computer modelling rather than observational evidence.’” Read the rest of the opening comment here

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An adventure/quest for ultimate freedom

First in a series

I am reposting updated versions of previous essays (i.e. “Humanity’s worst ideas, better alternatives”, “The Christian contradiction”, “Campbell on the meaning of human life”, “Two main approaches to organizing human societies”) because they go to the root themes that incite and validate our baser inherited impulses (i.e. impulses to tribalism, exclusion of differing others, domination/control of others, and punitive destruction of failing others). These primitive mythical themes have persisted across history in religious traditions and now also dominate the “secular” ideological narratives of our modern era (i.e. Declinism being a prominent example. See “The Idea of Decline in Western History” by Arthur Herman).

The alternative ideas offered, from human insight across history, speak to the profound liberation possible- i.e. liberation of mind, consciousness, and spirit at the deepest levels (i.e. subconscious). This liberation then reverberates out to impact all of life and society because we become just like the ultimate ideals/themes that we believe in, the ideals that we embrace to shape our worldviews. The alternatives point us in the direction of authentically humane existence. They show us how to “tower in stature as maturely human” (Joseph Campbell).

The project here is to probe resolutions to problems by dealing with the full complex of root contributing factors behind recurring social issues, notably, the recurrence of irrational apocalyptic themes in destructive movements like climate alarmism.

A reposting of the worst of inherited ideas and better alternatives. A project for true liberation of mind and emotion, an adventure for freedom at the core of human consciousness.

The ideas below have been held by most people across history in mythical/religious versions. They continue to dominate the great world religious traditions in our modern era. Most interesting, these same ideas are also embraced by many people today in “secular/ideological” forms. The terms used differ from religious versions but the core themes remain the same old, same old deforming mythology.

You then get this cognitive dissonance outcome: Many moderns think that they have freed themselves from mythical/religious ideas and are now more secular, materialist, even atheist in orientation. But that may be self-delusion because a close examination of the worldviews of these people reveals that the core themes they hold are often the same old mythical themes as those held across history by fundamentalist religious people.

“The same mythical themes have been repeated across all history and across all the cultures of the world”, Joseph Campbell. Read the rest of the opening comment here

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