Sunday, 26 March 2017

The moon is made of cheese. ;)

The title isn't serious, nor is anyone of sound mind claiming this to be true, yet, it is the kind of claim that one could keep alive by moving the goal posts.  If anything the idea of the moon being made of cheese is a joke about the power of ignorance and what things may look like to simple minds.

When we talk of god, heaven, or any such idea, it is easy enough to say without canonical reasoning that the trouble must be that we haven't disproved god as much as one idea of god.  We can go to the extreme of examining the stories of every holy book and the idea of god(s), and when we test what we can the faithful can always move god beyond our ability to test.  Long ago it was normal to image the gods walking the hills and mountains, meeting on the highest mountains, such as Olympus, and when we conquered these high places the gods became kings of the sky.  As modern science kicked in the ability to test the skies and the vastness of space pushed the room for god to an every greater extent, until, at some point, god is no longer in our universe, or not visible in our dimension.  The process is one that the god of the Israelites is now the god of the gaps. 

To the ignorant and thought-reformed, the idea of a small universe, a young earth, etc.  Isn't hard to accept, from a point of ignorant faith it is easy to imagine a god unseen watching mankind and helping the flock.  It isn't unlike the stories we tell to children, the idea that fairies live in the garden, that pixies look after the forests, or giants live in the sky and are reached by climbing magic bean stalks.  Or, the moon is made of cheese, a fun idea added into children stories and cartoons, and because it looks a bit like a kind of cheese with pits and holes.  We troll our off-spring in this way, giving the kinder an inspired imagination in their earliest years. 

The link between ideas of god and the cheese based moon is to not understand where we come from via a natural selection process and cheese comes from cow.  The outspoken theist and outspoken child may well speak with the honest belief that this is so, one at 44 years and the other at 4 years.  The arguments used would stem from the ideas they have, every step back they make would require them to deny or change view to the nearest safe position, thus, in a fashion, they are alike. 

To give an example, when addressing the theist you may point out the universe is not geocentric, they will likely disagree and agree, the universe seems to be not geocentric.  But if the universe is centred on us then how could you truly refute it if it is at a cosmic level if not as far as our star system nor our galaxy.  So we both aren't the centre yet are the focus of the universe.  The argument moves the centric view while making it more concrete to the faithful via a leap of faith and imagination. 

The child's view of a moon of fermented curds might make similar moves, denial can't last in children on such issues for long, adsorption is the logical step, thus, they would incorporate the ideas or adapt them to fit their model of reality.  Literal cheese or otherwise may as well be cheese since it is so far that we cannot touch it, but then mankind has visited the moon, and so a staggering realisation can take place.  The obvious takes place, they learn or remain foolishly uninformed, the latter kind is most like the devout religious person.  In which case faith or trust in an idea is coupled with imagination, and when one ponders possibility and not literal philosophy one can create universes of near nonsense.  In an extreme case we could dream up a character that thinks the cheese of the moon is to refer to the feminine energies of both the moon and cheese being aligned, or indeed an idea of other worldly cheese, a food of the gods.  Such people would find themselves in padded cells in adulthood, yet to those innocent youths the idea of the lunar emmental is believable, and only because you have no yet developed your rational faculties. 

So, what the hell am I talking about?  I'm using an odd example of the moon being made of cheese and the comparison to irrational beliefs to express that one should outgrow the unrealistic over time, yet the idea of religion often linger for a lifetime.  At which point the health answer is not to move the goal posts and suggest multi-dimensional forces, but instead to recognise that you do not know the answer.  In cases of the moon and god, we can accept the evidence and need not jump to any conclusions.  Even if we have way of making our mistaken views seem to be less irrational as we mess with the perimeters.  Final clarification, to make claims of knowledge when you know little is to know almost nothings, to warp reality to your beliefs prove nothing at all. 

[A bit random, I know.]

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