By Karl Idowu
Questions to ponder before progressing.
Are you unique
Are you religious
Do you believe in God?
if you believe in God, why do you believe?
if you can’t explain an event, do you automatically turn to God?
If you don’t believe in God, what do you believe in and why?
You are unique. Oh! yeah, I never heard that before you might think to yourself but are you unique? Are you one of a kind? Are you the only one of your “kind” that exists? The simple answer isn’t all that simple. Our opinion on our levels of individuality are subjective but are you unique? Yes. yes, you are. Now you know you are what does this mean? Does it mean it makes you better than your fellow man? Does it make you smarter, stronger or even more special than your fellow man? No, in reality, it doesn’t so what does the label unique really mean? Everyone has an answer but if everyone has a different answer does this mean there is an actual answer? A scientist asked might go into a scientific argument of genetic composition etc while a religion sympathiser will make claim to God’s and their powers. Others might say things like you are a combination of factors which are only specific to you. All in all, everyone seems to have their own views and ideas about what makes an individual unique. It doesn’t make me cynical to believe we have our views on our unique attributes, it’s just based on people’s historical behaviour. Now another question to ponder, should the search for answers to questions about life, it’s true meaning, our purpose and finding true happiness divide or bring us together? It brings me to my favourite saying “birds of the same feather flock together”. it’s not just about being unique but it’s the understanding of the fact that you may be unique in your being but in reality, you are just another sand in the hourglass that is the days of our lives. It’s not about thinking your unique, it’s understanding being unique doesn’t make you special. it makes you normal. The view that all reality is one being is called monism, and although I wouldn’t consider myself a monist the ideas shared here have logical merit. One implication of monism is that all entities, including ourselves and the things around us, are somehow parts of one single being. According to the findings of Spinoza each individual is composed of many other individuals, forming a series increasing in complexity. For instance, multiple cells and micro-organisms make up a fish; multiple fishes, plants, stones and water make up a river; multiple rivers, mountains and land make up the earth; multiple planets make up the universe, and so on. The existence of every finite thing is caused by another finite thing. So using this premise would it be safe to say God is not a creator who forms individual things and beams them into existence. Nor did God create the world, or the universe, in this way. All finite modes, including the earth, the sun and the stars, are caused by God as other finite modes. Now as a deeply religious person reading this, you may call this blasphemy before even considering the logical nature of this argument but doesn’t that say more about your religious tolerance than it does my disbelief? Religion dictates People have free will so you choose to serve God but religion also states God has a master plan. Another contradiction of itself.
Let’s see and question some religious beliefs.
● the belief that God acts with an intention or purpose; Human construct and not proven
● the belief that God has organised the world for the sake of
human or divine purposes; Human construct and not proven
● the belief that natural things exist for the sake of human or
divine purposes; Human construct and not proven
● the belief that the universe has a final purpose, and that the
universe is moving towards fulfilling that purpose. Human construct and not proven
Spinoza’s ethics argues that these beliefs are superstitions that do not reflect the truth. Now the fact some of the ideas shared in the work is taken from the work of Spinoza could give way to the religious reader saying he was an atheist, devil worshipper etc but I employ the religious to go search and find how condemned him and his work was. I employ the reader don’t just the read the about the fact he was condemned but i employ you to search by who and why was he condemned. The simple answer is the religious community, in this case, the church but this is not about religious condemnation. Not to say the religious are judgemental but the history of speaking out against certain beliefs/religions has seen condemnation and still remains a trend in modern day society.This brings me to next point would it be false to say human beings developed an image of God based on a maximised version of their own abilities and tendencies? No, it would not be. This is because every finite mode naturally regards things from its own perspective. As Spinoza puts it, humans think of God as eminently human; if a triangle could speak, it would say that God is ‘eminently triangular’”. Our human-centric view of the world leads us to judge things and events according to what is most useful to us. Consequently, human beings have developed a series of value-terms with which we judge natural phenomena: good, evil, order, confusion, beauty, ugliness, etc. Since people have different experiences and different purposes, we disagree with one another and differ in our judgements. Evidence of this can be found through the fact, most rural tribes and people believe in God’s of their own creations without ever witnessing or seeing an outsider’s God’s. Most writer start of writing a piece of literature, usually with the intent of having of a conclusion this piece does not try to do that. It is trying to help shed more light on the issue of the religious division so we can continue a dialogue as we can no longer be silent about the religious path of destruction the world is on. There shall not be another world war this time based on religion for we shall not be silent. Religion and God are superstitions that keep people ignorant. Only by breaking free of this superstition will we be able to seek true understanding of the universe, thereby gaining true insight into ourselves as the unique human beings.