Sunday, December 7, 2008

Evolution versus Intelligent Design


Throughout the course of modern history, both religion and science have been at tenterhooks with regard to which is the better system.
While science follows the strict doctrine of hypothesis, analysis, experimentation, observation and conclusion, Religion follows a rather simple doctrine much to the chagrin of science called faith.
Faith involves none of the principles of science, it merely bases its conclusions based upon what each respective prophet has claimed is true.
In the current world of rationality, such practice is deemed insane and ludicrous.
And thus both systems have been at each others throats as long as possible.

One particular argument that has caught my attention is the age old argument between evolution versus the theory of intelligent design.
Science does not believe in a maker, or a divine creator.
Nor does it believe that we were produced out of thin air. That seems to be an argument logical enough!
But then how did we come to be?
And for that matter how did all that we see and hear about us come to exist?
While I have much disbelief with regard to the creationist story the abrahamic faiths have spun so far, at the same time I cannot accept the scientific verdict that that we just happen to be molecular accidents.
Its like serendipity on a massive scale.

The best thing for any analyst is to have an open mind. A mind open to ideas no matter how bizarre and ridiculous.
And that's what I believe is worth striving for.
I do not belong to any abrahamic sect, for I have my roots within the Dharmic faiths.The eastern faiths to my knowledge have never been at crossroads with scientific ideas.

As science progressed so did faith. And frankly speaking, before the advent of abraham, there weren't any faith versus science arguments.
The Dharmic faiths allow enough room to keep our minds open. So did the Hellenistic and the Egyptian faiths.
They allow us to inculcate ideas of faith within scientific possibilities leaving no room for controversy!
Now getting back to the topic,
Darwinian theory of evolution has put forward certain basic seemingly logical principles which govern the basic rules and regulations a species must observe in order to survive. All of us know of the idiom called survival of the fittest.
All species have a complex mechanism to survive and procreate. Scientists claim that the key to survival rests in the genome of each individual species.
Opossums play dead, zebra travel in herds so that their black and white stripes can confuse the color blind lion, chameleons camouflage discreetly and etcetera.

I at one point of time raised tame pigeons. Pigeons born in a cage, unexposed to the wild. They were set free at one point, and used to stay put in my garden. Yet when they would sight a hawk, they would run in a frenzy.
Now, given the fact that they never saw a hawk all their lives, how did they know that the big bird out there is out to get them?What mechanism prompted them to act so?

Genetics? An inborn mechanism that prompts immediate action following a threat to survival.

Science puts most of the animal species into the category of genetically programmed molecular lifeforms meant so survive and procreate at all costs.I guess some were well programmed while the others like the dodo were not genetically "updated" to flee from the big two legged beast.

Heart of hearts I feel there is more to life than just programmed functioning.
I have heard of cases when pet dogs rescued their owner from say a fire only to succumb itself. According to programming this doesn't make sense since the basic instinct' of the dog would be to run away from the fire rather than towards it. So I suppose that violated the law of survival at any cost.
What is it that makes us deviate from basic programming? Does being selfless count as part of survival? Does sacrifice come anywhere in the evolutionary laws? For that matter does love?

Lobsters are known to mate for life. Say, for instance one of the mates dies before the act of procreation, the remaining lobster remains celibate for life. That again violates the law of continuation of species.
According to programming the lobster should then find a new mate and at any cost salvage the law of creating further generations so that the species survives at any cost.

But that does not happen. So shall we call that a programming error?
Science does not believe in a Creator/Creatress, because its something that totally defies logic.
Logic is a definite science without room for deviations from the main principle.

But then, what aspect within life itself seems logical?

Wheres the logic in a woman sacrificing a promising career for the man she loves? Wheres the logic in a man giving up his true love so that his best friend can marry the woman of his dreams?

Wheres the logic behind a someone who gives up most of his possessions so that he may spend the remainder of his life as a hermit?

A number of things on the earth defy logic and genetic programming.

Not everything in our realm can be narrowed into the basics of fact and logic.

Not everything in our realm can be thoroughly classified and understood.

Certain things remain beyond logic and understanding. You do not need to see divine phenomenon on earth to prove the existence of faith.
The answers lie here on earth itself between the creatures that inhabit it.
We happen to be beings that are not mere molecular accidents.
I do not support the theory of spontaneous Creation, for evolution does seem a logical explanation to our existence.
But the timing and the process seems in my opinion impeccable.

Can you imagine the creation of the human race along with large carnivorous dinosaurs?We shan't have seen the light of the day. Its easy to associate everything with coincidence.Its the best word science has as its arsenal to discredit anything that has any connection with faith.

But I believe in a higher power, a power that brought us where we are through evolution or any other process for that matter. I refuse to believe that we are molecular "accidents" or coincidentally we just happened to be created.

I refuse to believe that the world runs on a strict doctrine of fact, practicality and logic. For the proof is right before us,

We are human, not automatons. All that we say and do today defies logic, defies practicality, defies factual accuracy.

I believe in a Higher power watching over us just as we were watched over when we first came to be. Science cannot explain the necessity of love, sacrifice and selfless behavior.

But as we all know, whether we happen to believe in God or not, that there is no point to living without love. And love is not an accident, Its a manifestation of that spark of divinity, from whence we came to be.

What say Darwin?

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Transit Passengers

Usually its a common occurrence that when you travel by a plane or a train, given that you are alone, you tend to get chatty with the one sitting next to you.
Provided the person with you is receptive, you strike the right note and the journey thus becomes pleasant.
By the time the ride comes to an end, you part ways. And for the remainder of the journey you may end up solitary, to the extent of missing the person with whom you were travelling with.

Life is filled with interesting analogies. All things common place in our day to day lives have a profound underlying meaning. Those wise enough manage to grasp life wishes to depict, while others are too busy intertwined within themselves to realize the true meaning of things.
I lost someone special today.
Someone close to me. Someone I hoped I would meet after a certain period.
Its hard to imagine the absence, but at the same time I guess that's how things are meant to be, whether we like it or not.
Spending a great deal of time with that person, one takes for granted that things shall be the same forever.
I cannot blame ourselves. For after all, we are but human.
Unfortunately there does come a time, when those near you decide to go away, and there's precious little that you can do to stop them.
But one must remind ourselves, that those gone are the same as we are.
Passengers in transit.
We are in transit. We belong to a realm that is not permanent. We belong to a realm subject to change. And we are just travelling along.
Travelling is hard, the road might get bumpy, you might not seem to be heading towards the place you do wish to reach, there could be delays and who knows, the ride could come to an abrupt halt.
But there are things that make a cumbersome travel a trifle pleasant. And that's the passenger along with you.
You share your thoughts, your feelings, you happen to face the same ordeals together. And soon, lifes a peach!
Sometimes after mutual passengers part, there is a great sense of dismay.
A vacuum, which you cannot help filling.
For a while you seem lost. And you don't really know what to do with yourself.
But if you are fortunate, another passenger will soon take the earlier ones place.
And the ride might get peachy again. Of course at start you might not concur with everything the new passenger says or does, but we underestimate ourselves. We are human, and soon we find ourselves warming up to the new passenger.
We do have the ability to move on just like the ones before us did.
Truth be told......I have no answer to what one should do if they part with the ones they love.
But what I do know, is that by realising that certain aspects in life are all but inevitable, one can gather the strength to move on.
At times of loss, people may bombard you with philosophy, personal anecdotes, so on and so forth.
But in my opinion the best consolation comes from within. When you realise what's best and make peace with yourself.
I shall always regret the fact that I could never properly bid goodbye to whom I lost.
But heart of hearts I hope that the passenger in question understood my predicament.
May God take care of you,
I shall always love you Patti,
your grandson,
Vyas.