Today’s stren introduces a new word-switch whose meaning will change the way we understand ourselves. By now you understand that a word-switch is a signal to turn on a newer way of thinking that reflects our present state of knowledge and wisdom. In doing so, it switches off the more established mental pathway that was based on our previous state of knowledge. Trigger words generally direct our attention to concepts established by instinct and tradition. Word-switches modify our way of thinking by replacing the “mindless” prewired authority of instinct and tradition with common sense wisdom based on new knowledge. Let’s update our thinking to today’s knowledge by creating the word-switch “human becomings.” We must understand that we are a dynamic work-in-progress, not a static human being.
Let’s consider the evidence. Perhaps we’d be wise to begin with our knowledge that creation is itself a work-in-progress. I will be addressing this in greater detail in a book I am working on, The Story of Us. Here are a few highlights.
- We now understand our sun is an infant in the universe, one of billions of stars in one galaxy among billions of galaxies, including some so far away that it takes untold light-years just to reach us. A solar light-year is 9.46 trillion km/5.88 trillion miles. Instead of being the center of everything as we once believed, science indicates we are a relatively small piece of change from a first cause that is yet beyond our comprehension.
- Recent knowledge indicates that life on earth began about 3 ½ billion years ago. Science indicates that humankind is the growing edge of the gradual progression from simple to complex life. We remain among the 2 or 3 percent of life on earth that has not become extinct. We are not only the growing edge of creation, we have become powerful creators and destroyers of all about us. Unlike other life, we continue to enlighten ourselves to modify what instinct and tradition make of us.
- Our generation is the first on earth to create the power to annihilate ourselves within minutes, 24/7, by the word of a single person or a mechanical error. Within our lifetime or certainly our children’s lifetime, our ability to create weapons of ultimate destruction will be available to multiple tribes, including those who already indicate it is their intent to use them. Some invoke “God’s will” but others, such as Hitler, Stalin, and Mao, among many others, justify their motives based on a godless ideology.
- As we grow our knowledge, we continue to modify the faith-based beliefs that determine our actions. Our ancestors created and worshiped idols. They devised rituals to placate them that we now consider foolish. For 200 years of Crusades, Popes offered indulgences, including escape from eternal Hell, in return for killing Muslims – acting with the infallible inspiration of God. Some Muslim leaders today justify killing those who fail to accept the specific views of their God. Yet, the idea that there is one first cause who has created all is more common than not. Allied soldiers during WWI were baffled to discover that every German soldier had inscribed on their belt “Gott mitt uns” (God is with us). How could that be when we knew God favored “our side”? Most people have the conception of a personal almighty force that favors “our side’s” beliefs against “not our side,” and periodically intervenes to take care of the bad guys. Were it not for the emotional power of instinct and tradition, common sense wisdom would indicate the transparent, self-serving nature of such assumptions. These examples are not meant to denigrate religion. They are offered to indicate we all progress in our mission to elevate ourselves by making mistakes and replacing instinct and tradition with common sense management. The state of our world indicates we have much unfinished work to do to make common sense common.
- Our recent scientific knowledge that creation is a work-in-process suggests we reexamine the creation stories of our ancestors, which were based on limited knowledge. The prevalent religious view that God created all we see in 7 days belies common sense unless we interpret God’s “day” as the equivalent of billions of years, or timeless.
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