Reflections on Axioms, Presuppositions, Faith, Intuition, Reason, Philosophy and their Impact on Epistemology
Zahir Ebrahim | Project Humanbeingsfirst.org
From the well known Occam's razor principle which is to choose the fewest and simplest possible axioms of faith, beliefs, assumptions, presuppositions to construct the rational scientific method on the anvil of falsifiability, to the belief in supernatural as the unfalsifiable axiom of the immanent psyche that distinguish humans from non spiritual beings, are all presuppositions that are believed to be true but cannot always be proven to be true. These axioms can potentially only be proved to be false (possibly at some future time).
When that is the case, that an axiom of faith, a presupposition of truth, can eventually be shown to be false, it is called falsifiability. That is the foundation of modern rational epistemology as well as the scientific method --- necessary presuppositions of convenience which can eventually be shown to be false (unless proved to be true along the way when it is no longer considered an axiom but a demonstrable fact). Why is that? Because certain fundamentals cannot always be proved to be true even if they may be strongly believed to be true.
For instance, take the example of geometry that we use in our everyday life, and have been using for over two thousand years. Its principal axiom, parallels lines don't meet at infinity, can never be proved to be true. Because no one can go to infinity and come back to report that they witnessed or measured that yes indeed parallel lines did not even meet at infinity. It can, however, be shown to be false under certain circumstances, such as in relativistic physics, where space-time becomes curved (distorted) due to gravity effect (as empirically demonstrated for the General Theory of Relativity during the total solar eclipse of 1919 when the New York Times headlined the confirmation that light, normally observed to only travel in straight lines, can bend: “Lights All Askew In The Heavens – Stars Not Where They Seemed or Were Calculated to be, but Nobody Need Worry”). This effect can cause two parallel lines, one effected by that space-time gravity field, to intersect with the other not effected by the gravity field at some distant point. Thus, the fundamental premise under which the parallel lines axiom of Euclidean geometry works is only when space-time is not under relativistic effect. But that axiom of Euclidean geometry still cannot be proved to be false in non relativistic three dimensional space. It is just assumed to be true without proof and falsifiability, primarily because it is convenient, accords with daily human experience as well as commonsense, and helps formulate as well as solve one, two and three dimensional problems encountered in non relativistic space-time.
When something is assumed to be true without evidentiary proof, what scientists call empirical evidence, it is akin to belief, faith. The entire Euclidean geometry is based on such an axiom of faith.
In the same way, in mental life, we hypothesize beliefs that are immanent and constitute our core beliefs. Some of these, over time, have been shown to be false, in which case we abandoned them (but not easily). Such as belief in lightening / thunder, or the lunar / solar eclipses, or celestial movement of heavenly bodies upon which Zodiacal astrology is based, or the black cat crossing the path, or prescriptive mantras, etc., are related to human affairs and have a major (or minor) impact on its causality (except of course through the placebo effect which is demonstrated to be true and has become integral part of the process of modern medical science in what's called double blind studies). So, these immanent human axioms of personal faith which in the earlier primitive societies governed not just individual human behavior, but also societal collective behavior, have largely been abandoned (with some difficulty for many), with evidentiary demonstration that these personal and societal axioms of faith are false and mere superstitions.
But other personal and societal religious axioms of faith, such as life after death or Afterlife, the Hereafter, or Heaven and Hell, or Day of Judgment, or existence of Angels, cannot ever be proved to be false (nor demonstrated to be true). For no one has returned from the dead to reliably inform us whether they found these to be true or false, and whether or not, as their moment of death approached, they finally witnessed the reality of the long believed mythical Death Angel who came to extract their soul into purgatory. And if someone were to return from the dead and if they did not bring back evidence of what they witnessed with them, how would anyone ever validate / adjudicate upon that personal witnessing, testimony? If multiple people reported the same, perhaps they were all just hallucinating, or perhaps they did indeed meet with the Death Angel and other artifacts of Afterlife that has informed the religions of man from time immemorial. How can anyone else objectively tell the difference however – except, once again, (a) in either choosing to believe them on the basis of their shared beliefs alone, or (b) in rejecting that testimony based on the axiom of materialistic conception of nature that nothing can exist after bodily death (which is technically defined by modern medicine as the measurable ceasing of the brain's electrical activity on the EEG monitor), and thus all such immanent experiences of returning from the dead can at best only be hallucinations due to the mind's temporary catatonic state.
Such axioms of faith that can never be shown to be false, and just believed to be true, are called unfalsifiable axioms. These axioms are also the foundational basis of world religions, specifically those which claim the validity of Divine Revelation. And also those that claim continuity of human existence in global consciousness ala Hinduism, and its variants seen in new age religions including animism (dict: belief in spiritual beings or agencies; the belief that natural objects, natural phenomena, and the universe itself possess souls; the belief that natural objects have souls that may exist apart from their material bodies; the doctrine that the soul is the principle of life and health) and animatism (dict: the attribution of consciousness to inanimate objects and natural phenomena).
But is Divine Revelation itself an unfalsifiable axiom? That obviously depends on the definition of Divine, which of course must precede addressing the question of Divine Revelation, and that subject is taken up systematically in the next two sections.
How about the existence of consciousness beyond materialism, and its derivative beliefs such as reincarnation, or interconnection to what's termed cosmic consciousness, animism, animatism? Once again, “proof” is usually by way of one's own personal belief system and not by way of the scientific method which obviously cannot be applied directly to what is not material, what cannot be observed by its instruments, and what cannot be measured by its instruments. So, making distinction between say, animatism and Divine Revelation is not permitted by the zealot materialists who tend to lump all non-materialist constructs, whether most ridiculous and absurd, or most profound, into the same “reject” category.
This is exemplary, even the epitome, of the problem of presupposition – axiomatic dogmas crippling epistemology. It leads to the dogmatic denial of that which is even amenable to the scientific method.
The scientific method can perhaps be applied indirectly for ascertaining certain non-material but existential phenomenon that is dogmatically denied by materialist science. For instance, adjudicating on ESP, and its related effects such as telepathy, for instance, observing that dogs know when their owners are coming home, homing pigeons uncannily always know how to return home regardless of how “blinded” they are made in test experiments, birds in flight always know how to change their flight paths in sudden turns in perfect sync without running into each other, identical twins feeling each others feelings and thoughts, the feeling of being stared at by others and turning around to often find them looking at you, etc. These empirical observations of behavior of living beings indicate the presence of some non-materialistic and hitherto unknown telepathic processes and mechanisms in play that are not understood by the materialistic conception of science. I.e., phenomenon demonstrated by living beings which cannot be proved to be false, and is instead observed to be true many a time, begging an explanation beyond the denials offered by the dogmas of orthodox materialist scientists of the Richard Dawkins variety (the Dawkinsian clan, Dawkinsianism). Some intriguing scientific experiments have indeed been devised to demonstrate their existential validity by the rebel extraordinaire, Cambridge University biologist Dr. Rupert Sheldrake (see http://sheldrake.org/), to beggar all materialistic theories of nature to date. William Shakespeare had way too presciently captured the crippling of the dogmatic mind in Hamlet for all times. It is especially pertinent to our own epoch of knowledge explosion which, instead of humility, tends to confer unbounded hubris upon the arrogant mind: “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”
Based on the above short introduction, it does not take a great deal of intelligence to perceive the impact of dogmas on crippling epistemology when the beliefs or axioms are absurd, rooted in authority figures as their source of truth, or in immanent superstitions of mental life. What we believe to be true and what can be shown to be true are two different matters.
Thus falsifiability has become the corner stone of modern science. The axioms of science are deliberately made falsifiable --- as in the Occam's razor principle --- presuppositions which are initially assumed to be true but which can eventually either be demonstrated to be true (in which case they are no longer axioms but facts) or proved to be false (in which case they are abandoned), or circumscribed to their applicability limit, as is done in Euclidean geometry for its axiom of parallel lines which are now confined only to non relativistic space-time.
Science dies to reincarnate as religion if, or when, its axioms turn to dogma and become unquestionable, inscrutable, incontrovertible, unfalsifiable. There are several examples of this throughout history down to our own enlightened times: from the earth is the center of the universe dogma of the Church of antiquity to the latter day global warming dogma of the world superstate. While the former was a genuine false belief, the latter is uber Machiavelli driving a political agenda (see http://tinyurl.com/Global-Warming-New-Religion).
Under modern science's materialistic axiom of faith that all existence is material and death of material is death of existence (non animism), the non falsifiable axioms of faith of world religions that are predicated on non materialistic existence, on spiritual transcendence beyond the body, where the material body is seen only as a temporal container, have been denigrated and marginalized as superstitions. All non materialism is treated with equal contempt by latter day materialist reductionists –– the absurd belief in a cat crossing the path causing one harm, and belief in God or Divine Revelation, are treated the same! The latter is often dismissed by equating it to the former, and deliberately so by the dogmatic Dawkinsian clan. The same transpires with those who create absurd theologies as the avant-garde in thought like the strawman of animatism (dict: the attribution of consciousness to inanimate objects and natural phenomena), which the Dawkinsian clan is all too happy to equate with belief in God and Divine Revelation. That blind-sight of the Dawkinsian clan is not mere psychological cataract. It is well crafted political theory which underwrites “Will to Power”.
Some in this Dawkinsian clan are surely honest exponents of their own personal Pollyannaish beliefs as they zealously herald the way to Secular Humanism as the next stage of human evolution whereby, human beings, now liberated from the clutches of superstitious theism which has been the leading cause of all misanthropy throughout history (as they argue), make their own lofty declarations of universal human rights and live happily ever after (see http://tinyurl.com/HGWells-Universal-Human-Rights). These well-intentioned useful idiots often see scarcity of resources and terrorism of the pirates as the fundamental problems to be solved by Secular Humanism and the problem of primacy never occurs to their indoctrinated minds – indoctrinated no differently in their new religion than any theist zealot of antiquity (see http://tinyurl.com/Problem-Primacy-not-Scarcity).
While others, cunning predators preying on human instincts, are harvesters of those Pollyannaish beliefs to diabolically foster their own political agendas to achieve their one-world empire. This is no different than how suicide bombers, ardent believers in their own “divine mission”, are diabolically harvested by their terrestrial handlers who create, encourage, train and fund them to pursue their beliefs to the very end for the enticement of heavenly maidens, while actually serving the geopolitical interests of policy-makers upstream (see http://tinyurl.com/Superman-Morality).
This is how “militant Islam” is constructed by the Western hegemons to serve their own political agenda for their Hegelian Dialectic of having an endless enemy to wage endless wars against (see http://tinyurl.com/hijacking-word-islam). This is also how insurgency is fabricated by the state, both domestically as well as in far-away places using the discontent of the local peoples, which often the state is itself the cause of, to justify its own counter-insurgency operations to achieve its political agendas which it otherwise could not dignify (see http://tinyurl.com/insurgency-counterinsurgency)
And that is the open secret behind promulgating Secular Humanism so freely by the West today --- where its most zealot exponents often find themselves pushing against open doors with sanctuary, prizes, accolades, applause, and career advancement awaiting them to continually tickle their egos. It is the Trojan horse to subvert world religions which the powers that be, see as impediment to the global dystopia they have planned for mankind (see http://tinyurl.com/Islam-vs-Secular-Humanism ).
The impact of this axiomatic presupposition of materialistic philosophy upon which the fundamental beliefs and practices of modern political theories, modern science, modern medicine, modern theology are all constructed: what we personally believe, what policies we legislate, what projects we fund, how we manage our collective well-being including healthcare, how we make war and peace, etc., is nothing short of monumental. The consequent of this core materialist belief, which I call the first-cause axiom of modernity, meaning, it is the first-cause, the root-head, the foundational presupposition of modern epistemology that has fashioned the dogmas of modernity, is rapidly leading to the global scientific technetronic dystopia encircling all non-primitive civilizations today. The principal consequences are: (a) secular naturalism (how we understand the world), (b) secular humanism (how we understand human life), (c) will to power (our political theory and the basis of exceptionalism among the self-proclaimed shepherds of human life), and (d) social Darwinianism (our social theory and the basis of herding and culling human sheep and “useless eaters”). That is the profound reality of crippled epistemology --- in the hands of the cunning Superman, it leads to humanity's enslavement.
(a) Secular Naturalism
This is the dogmatic philosophy of materialist reductionism. It separates physics (the how) from metaphysics (the why), and focuses on discovering the how by reducing all existence into its innate material and physical components.
- It postulates that all natural existence, and all natural phenomenon, from galaxies to quarks, anywhere in the universe, is based on, and governed by, quantifiable and fixed laws of nature which apply universally to these innate material components, whether or not man has discovered all of them as yet.
- These laws of nature are universal and apply equally to all material existence in all frames of references everywhere in the universe, including to man himself (there is nothing out of band about man's existence), and including to that which the mind of man or his instruments can and cannot directly observe or measure but are necessary to hypothesize to explain existence. Such as: dark-matter, fields, waves, fundamental particles, singularities, first-cause of existence such as the big-bang, final-cause of existence such as its natural end-state which, in the Aristotelian thought, used to be the metaphysical or teleological “why”, the purpose of existence, but with the separation of physics from metaphysics in the seventeenth century, is now substituted with what is the “end-state” of existence.
- When material existence ceases to exist in its physical form, that entity which embodied that physical form ceases to exist completely.
- Material existence has no inherent purpose except to exist by the laws of nature which govern its creation, evolution, functioning, and its end.
- It is meaningless to ask the “why” of material existence which is left to philosophy or religion to answer as it has no place in the laws of nature.
- The empirical methods of science known as the scientific method, are the best approach to understand that “how” of physical existence.
- The focus on understanding physical existence is sufficient to explain all forces of nature and the nature of all existence.
- Nature has no a priori purpose and came about by natural processes that are governed by natural laws, not all of which may be understood or known at any given moment.
- The natural laws are “a-moral” and “secular”, and neither concern themselves to the “why” of existence, nor to the “values” of existence (such as moral law), nor to the “purpose” of existence (such as its goal).
- The philosophy of materialist reductionism denies all existence that is not physical, not governed by the physical laws of nature, including transcendental existence, spiritual existence, and existence outside of its natural materialist manifestation such as the soul and consciousness.
- When the physical body dies it leaves no soul behind. When the physical brain dies it leaves no consciousness behind.
- In the materialist philosophy a man dying and a star exploding are equivalent. They both cease to exist completely after death, apart from the physical residues they each leave behind, the lifeless cadaver and debris-radiation fields respectively, which (obviously) no longer contain the innate characteristic of what existed before death.
These presuppositions and corollaries of materialist reductionism therefore guide the processes of not just the hard sciences, but also all social sciences as well as theology and philosophy, and limit the understanding of existence to the ambit of these presuppositions. To what extent these presuppositions have become dogmas that serve narrow self-interests and political agendas is demonstrated by empiricism. Pursuit of science today is a-moral, its understanding of existence solely materialistic and physical, its mega-funding mainly for primacy and profit imperatives, and its advancements the harbinger of dystopia and seeds of self-destruction. The presupposition of the nature of man being fundamentally a material construct with no spiritual component --- that latter notion being the gratuitous appendage of how societies evolved from its primitive state when such superstitions among all peoples of the ancient world, were necessary to explain not just natural phenomenon, but also to give meaning to life and rationalize away the many inequities besetting man from time immemorial, all of which have now been supplanted by the wisdom of science and the Will to Power --- is the harbinger of hedonism, sense of emptiness, despair, loneliness, isolation, purposelessness. It has led to large prison populations on the one hand, and rising psychological discontents in the general populations on the other. This manifests itself empirically in:
- a) rising behavioral dysfunction (such as loss of public empathy, as witnessed in the wild cheering among Americans when watching the slaughter of the untermensch on their television screens; easy acceptance of inhuman treatment and torture of prisoners as a necessary evil, as witnessed in Guantanamo Bay and Iraq's prisons under American occupation; easy acceptance of the paradigm of guilty unless proven innocent, as witnessed in the Patriot Acts and police-state deployed worldwide; increasing anger and violence; etc.);
- b) rising social dysfunction (such as living in servitude under authority figures as mark of high civilization; increase in dysfunctional families, alienation, social violence, global wealth disparity, unpardonable impoverishment worldwide; lifestyles that encourage self-absorption for the haves while countenancing patience for have-nots whose “death rates must go up” (McNamara, 1970) to curb world population explosion; creation of eugenics international policies (suitably disguised), such as that witnessed in NSSM 200 (Kissinger, 1974) that envisioned food as a weapon to curb global birth rates in least developed nations before it became a threat to the affluent West's national security: “Is the U.S. prepared to accept food rationing to help people who can't/won't control their population growth?”; sky rocketing crime rates in industrialized societies, as witnessed in the West which has some of the highest concentration of prison inmates anywhere in the world, especially in the United States of America which has become the prison capital of the world; recruitment for soldiery among dysfunctional populations, plentiful harvests of economic conscription, both of which lead to war crimes against humanity during field deployment, and PTSD when soldiers return home to feelings of intense isolation, unable to relate to their families, unable to reintegrate, and suffering mental anguish for the inhuman butchery they have committed and witnessed; etc.);
- and c) rising mental psychoses (such as mental illnesses going through the roof, as seen in increasing big-pharma profits for psychotropic drugs; the inability to appreciate beauty of a lovely sunrise and sunset; etc.); all heralding new discontents in the materialist civilizations.
Cambridge University British biologist Rupert Sheldrake in his iconoclastic book and public talks on this subject variously titled: The Science Delusion – Dispelling the The Ten Dogmas of Materialism and Freeing the Spirit of Enquiry, observes of the present state of the materialist axiom of science: “Despite all the achievements of science and technology, materialism is now facing a credibility crunch that was unimaginable in the twentieth century.” “Materialism provided a seemingly simple, straightforward worldview in the late nineteenth century, but twenty-first-century science has left it behind. Its promises have not been fulfilled, and its promissory notes have been devalued by hyperinflation.” The book identifies the following ten dogmas of materialism which have straight-jacketed science, understanding of both the nature of man and the world around him, and which limit its advancement due to the almost church-like orthodoxy that controls the scientific outlook (what's funded, what's published, what's followed-up):
- Dogma 1 is the assumption that nature is mechanical, or machine-like, that everything in nature is like a machine. Animals are like machines, plants are like machines and we’re like machines, lumbering robot in Richard Dawkins’ vivid phrase our brains are like genetically programmed computers. So that’s the first assumption, being in science since the 17th century.
- Dogma 2 is the assumption that matter is unconscious. The whole universe is made of unconscious matter, all of nature is made of unconscious matter, our bodies are made of unconscious matter, but for some peculiar reason our brains become conscious and that is one of the big problems in materialist science. Consciousness ought not to exist at all.
- Dogma 3 is the assumption that the laws of nature are fixed, they are the same at the moment of the big bang as they are today and they will be the same forever. (And so they’re constants and that is why they are called constant, things like the speed of light and gravitation are constant.)
- Dogma 4 is the assumption that the total amount of matter and energy is always the same, it all came into being at the big bang, it’s been the same ever since and it will be the same forever.
- Dogma 5 is the assumption that nature is purposeless. There are no purposes in animals or plants or in life as a whole. And the entire evolutionary process has no purpose; it’s just come about by blind chance in the laws of nature.
- Dogma 6 is the assumption that biological inheritance is material, it’s all genetic or epigenetic or possibly inside the epigenetic inheritance, but in any case material.
- Dogma 7 is the assumption that memories are stored as material traces inside the brain. All your memories are inside your head in some way, stored in nerve endings or phosphor related proteins or no one knows quite how, but the assumption is they are all in the brain.
- Dogma 8 is the assumption that your mind is inside your head, it’s an aspect of the activity of the brain.
- Dogma 9 is the assumption that psychic phenomena like telepathy are illusory, they appear to exist, but they are not real. That’s because the mind is inside the head and can’t have any effects at a distance.
- Dogma 10 is the assumption that mechanistic medicine is the only kind that really works. Alternative and complementary therapies may appear to work, but that’s only because people have got better anyway or it’s the placebo effect. And that’s why governments and medical research funding and so on funds only mechanistic medicine based upon the principle of ‘the body is a machine’, working on chemistry and physics, so it can only be treated chemically or physically by drugs or surgery. And of course that is very effective up to a point, but it’s just part of medicine, anyway that’s the assumption. (From transcript of one of Sheldrake's talks)
Rupert Sheldrake writes in the Introduction of The Science Delusion:
“Together, these beliefs make up the philosophy or ideology of materialism, whose central assumption is that everything is essentially material or physical, even minds. This belief-system became dominant within science in the late nineteenth century, and is now taken for granted. Many scientists are unaware that materialism is an assumption: they simply think of it as science, or the scientific view of reality, or the scientific worldview. They are not actually taught about it, or given a chance to discuss it. They absorb it by a kind of intellectual osmosis. In everyday usage, materialism refers to a way of life. In the spirit of radical scepticism, I turn each of these ten doctrines into a question. Entirely new vistas open up when a widely accepted assumption is taken as the beginning of an enquiry, rather than as an unquestionable truth. For example, the assumption that nature is machine-like or mechanical becomes a question: ‘Is nature mechanical?’ The assumption that matter is unconscious becomes ‘Is matter unconscious?’ And so on.” --- (see http://sheldrake.org/)
The hard reality of the forces behind the mechanistic medicine of Dogma 10, is the total domination of big-pharma in medicine and healthcare industries worldwide. The total orthodoxy of big-pharma's medicine, regulated by the American Drug Trust and owned by the Money Trust, has taken over the world of healthcare to only permit those treatments, fund those research and developments, and pay for those healthcare modalities, from which big-pharma can make big profits (see Medical Monopoly in Eustace Mullins' Murder by Injection, 1988). This medical orthodoxy denies the efficacy of natural medicine and refuses to fund the discovery and development of natural remedies that nature has provided for a song – for there is no profit in it. This medical orthodoxy has taken upon itself to dictate to mankind how they shall heal themselves, and in the process, has become integral part of the military-industrial complex of the Western primacy system to rigidly control mankind. Virtually every discipline of medicine, and virtually every approved treatment of every disease, is based on the dogmas prevalent in that area. And these dogmas limit the treatment options available to the patients in the mainstream of medicine. Heart disease, diabetes, cancer treatment, psychiatry are all driven by dogmas both of big-pharma and the consequence of secular naturalism under which the practitioners of medicine are trained, licensed and regulated (see http://tinyurl.com/Truth-Modern-Medicine).
Arguably, the field most ripe with dogmas is psychiatry. In his 1973 paper published in Science: On Being Sane in Insane Places, Dr. David L. Rosenhan of Stanford University, inquired into the foundational question of psychiatry in his empirical study of American psychiatric hospitals: If sanity and insanity exist, how shall we know them? (see http://bonkersinstitute.org/rosenhan.html) And concluded that psychiatry is rife with dogmas and presuppositions that beggar objective diagnosis: “It is clear that we cannot distinguish the sane from the insane in psychiatric hospitals. The hospital itself imposes a special environment in which the meaning of behavior can easily be misunderstood. The consequences to patients hospitalized in such an environment -- the powerlessness, depersonalization, segregation, mortification, and self-labeling -- seem undoubtedly counter-therapeutic.”
Today, psychiatry is completely taken over by the neuroscience of managing brain biochemistry with designer psychotropic drugs for virtually every behavioral / psychiatric diagnosis. New mental illnesses are continually defined in the manual of psychiatry called DSM, for which big-pharma continues to design new high margin psychotropic drugs, and which medical professionals continue to prescribe to their patients who are rapidly descending into younger and younger age groups.
Cardiovascular disease has been so taken over by big-pharma for-profit dogma that it must be mentioned here. Coronary Artery Disease, or CAD, directly related to modern food and lifestyle, is the leading heart disease in the world today. Its first-line treatment is to immediately insert stents to open up clogged arteries during the diagnostic process itself, called PCI, Percutaneous Coronary Intervention. The moment someone experiences chest pain or angina, and taken to the hospital, Cath-Lab is the first stop right after the emergency room has stabilized the patient. And invariably high profit margin heart stents are inserted with PCI under dubious (exaggerated) information given to the patients of the efficacy of the procedure. The New York Times reported: “Every year, more than half a million Americans undergo procedures to have a narrowed coronary artery propped open with a small metal mesh tube, or stent. In an emergency, when someone is having a heart attack, the operation can be lifesaving. But far too often, studies show, stents continue to be implanted in patients who stand to gain little if any benefit. Last month, two of the country’s largest medical organizations identified the procedure commonly used to place a stent — called a percutaneous coronary intervention, or angioplasty — as one of five highly overused medical interventions.” (http://tinyurl.com/NYT-stents-overused-15Aug2013 ).
Cardiovascular surgeon Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr., MD, of Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute, challenged the practice by comparing the present CAD therapies to the dogmas of the nineteenth century: Is the Present Therapy for Coronary Artery Disease the Radical Mastectomy of the Twenty-First Century? (see http://dresselstyn.com/Esselstyn_Caldwell_Article.pdf) Esselstyn began his challenge with the understatement: “To fully grasp how so many smart, right-minded people could get it so wrong, it might help to start with a quick review of medical history.” And he put his finger on the principal dogma reigning not just in his discipline, but in several other medical disciplines as well: “For the minority of heart patients, specifically those in the midst of heart attacks or acute coronary syndromes, stents or coronary artery bypass may be lifesaving. For the rest, none of the present therapies targets the cause: the Western diet. As a consequence, the disease marches on in all patients, which leads to more drugs, stents, and bypasses, increasing heart damage, heart failure, and, too often, death, from an essentially benign, food-borne illness.” Iconoclast Esselstyn has persisted in challenging the medical dogma prevalent in CAD therapy by presenting original research and scientific data collected over years of following patients that CAD is in fact reversible by nutritional intervention with plant based diet (see: A Way to reverse CAD? http://dresselstyn.com/JFP_06307_Article1.pdf ).
The dogmas of modern medicine are not merely theological, but designed to make permanent paying customers for big-pharma as part of the modern medical profession. They deliberately limit treatment options for the public by crippling the epistemology under which the medical profession and healthcare providers are trained, function, and offer treatment plans / knowledge to the public.
Is it trivial to undo big-pharma's full spectrum control of medicine and healtcare, to introduce laws to permit natural medicine to co-exist, to fund its research, to modify medical school training curriculum to incorporate its wisdom? To the naïve mind, it appears as simple to initiate as the stroke of a pen!
(b) Secular Humanism
Secular Humanism is the outgrowth of the presuppositions of Secular naturalism and deals with the sources of legal and moral codes that govern and direct human beings. This source is exclusively the mind of man, and not some supernatural, transcendental, spiritual or divine source. In the laws of nature there is no such construct as moral law, legal law, or value system, except that which naturally falls out from evolutionary sociobiology of Darwinianism, called social Darwinianism. The first-cause of human existence on earth, like all life on earth, is chance or accident. And social Darwinianism is the only natural behavior as seen in the jungle, and arguably the only natural “value system” if one may call it that, which may be attributed to the laws of nature. Morality is but a subjective value system and all spiritual questions of the “why” of existence are immanent, i.e., philosophical, in the mind of man, entirely abstract, and not part of the laws of nature that govern the physical world. Naturalists therefore treat moral, legal, and philosophical questions that regulate both human behavior and human destiny (i.e., final-cause), as mere utilitarian conventions created by political thinkers and philosophers for inducing social harmony and regulating human behavior.
Secular Humanism is the benign or Pollyannaish version sold by the Übermensch (Nietzschean Superman) to the gullible public to create useful idiots championing its cause. The reality however is what Nietzsche termed “der Wille zur Macht” (the Will to Power). In his final philosophical work published posthumously, Thus Spake Zarathustra, Nietzsche proclaimed: “God is dead.” And he presented the path to man's accelerated social (and biological) evolution through his “Will to Power”. Here we first look at the Pollyannaish version of Secular Humanism and take up the reality version next. The Pollyannaish version of Secular Humanism was described by this author in his 2011 study of hegemony and multiculturalism titled: Islam and Knowledge vs. Socialization.
The following Biblical Commandment from antiquity was, and still is, at least in my view, both complete and sufficient for governing the peaceable, equitable, and virtuous conduct of mankind:
“Do unto Others as you have others do unto you.” --- The Bible: Matthew 7:12, Luke 6:31; Old Testament Mosaic Law; Socrates; Confucius; Solon
So, why does mankind need anything more than that one primary fundamental Biblical statement? Indeed, one can easily surmise that all beneficial national constitutions, international and local laws, trade treaties, foreign policies, inter and intra governing principles, and even effective principles for dispute resolutions, are logically derivable from just that one ancient first principle, for a fairly equitable co-existence of mutual benefit for all mankind. There'd be no room for masters and slaves under the corollaries derived from such an egalitarian first principle!
While that universal pithy wisdom is deemed Biblical, I have found evidence of its truism in other antiquity as cited above. For instance, Solon the Athenian law giver, according to Plutarch's Lives, when asked which city he thought was well-governed, said:
“That city where those who have not been injured take up the cause of one who has, and prosecute the case as earnestly as if the wrong had been done to themselves.” --- Solon in Plutarch's Lives
Even beyond divine religion, in the realm of logic and rational empiricism alone, the following operations-research (OR) logical formulation due to Bertrand Russell, a man of considerable beliefs in no religion, is the most commonsensical recipe of governing peaceable human conduct. In my own succinct rendition, Bertrand Russell's formulation goes something like this (and I am putting it in single quotes to indicate that the formulation belongs to Russell but the words may not all be his):
'Maximize individual happiness while minimizing social conflict for optimizing the overall common-good.' --- Bertrand Russell's prescription to do away with religion as the bearer of moral law, probably in 'Why I am not a Christian' and similar writings
With just a little bit of reflection, one will see that Bertrand Russell captures the beneficial essence of many religions, including Islam, in at least so far as “haquq-al-ibad”, i.e., the rights of man upon man, otherwise known as moral law, are concerned, quite admirably.
By just using rational empathetic logic which hinges on spreading virtue rather than glory, vice, hegemony, and conquest, one can come up with reasonably equitable methods of governing oneself in any age, and among any peoples.
However, the Author of the Holy Qur'an advocating the path of mutual co-existence to mankind through the perfection of its message which it called “Islam”, is just as meaningless as man coming up with his own protocol for mutual co-existence using his own sensible logic and reason, if man is unwilling, or unable, to implement the protocol:
“This day have I perfected your religion for you, completed My favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion.” --- Verse fragment from Holy Qur'an 5:3, 632 AD
“Hegemony is as old as mankind.” --- Zbigniew Brzezinski, The Grand Chessboard – American Primacy and Its Geostrategic Imperatives, 1996 AD, pg. 3. The book's dedication reads: “For my students—to help them shape tomorrow's world”
Thus, if nihilist followers of Zbigniew Brzezinski's predatory foreign policies which predicate upon primacy and its geostrategic imperatives because they believe that “Hegemony is as old as mankind” so why change it, choose sociopathic mass psychology to mobilize the public to villainy and infamy by bequeathing to them only facile worldviews, well, that's not because there is any shortage of great platitudinous recipes in either the divine books of antiquity, or the modern mind of reason as the Deistic philosophers of eighteenth century enlightenment argued (of which Bertrand Russell was the atheist legatee).
That choice, of exercising villainous hegemony, or equity and benevolence, upon the 'untermenschen' is entirely man's of course. The Author of the Holy Qur'an itself asserts that such a choice between life's governing principles is entirely up to mankind in all its diversity of existence, and is neither a monolithic diktat of triumphalism, nor a choiceless matter like being born to one's parents:
“There is no compulsion in religion.” --- Holy Qur’an 2:256
“There surely came over man a period of time when he was a thing not worth mentioning.” --- Holy Qur’an 76:1
“Surely We have created man from a small life-germ uniting (itself): We mean to try him, so We have made him hearing, seeing.” --- Holy Qur’an 76:2
“Surely We have shown him the way: he may be thankful or unthankful.” --- Holy Qur’an 76:3
The overarching point being, at the risk of being repetitious, whatever the religion, whatever the people, and whatever the culture and geography, man naturally gravitates firstly towards one's own kith and kin, and secondly towards one's own socialization which principally gives birth to one's dominant worldview. It is all but a truism that just as one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter, one man's “messiah” is another man's lunatic.
Referring back to Zbigniew Brzezinski's ode to hegemony quoted at the very beginning, the method of circumventing domestic impediments to the “sustained exercise abroad of genuinely imperial power” become empirically self-evident:
“Moreover, as America becomes an increasingly multicultural society, it may find it more difficult to fashion a consensus on foreign policy issues, except in the circumstance of a truly massive and widely perceived direct external threat. [Because] the pursuit of power is not a goal that commands popular passion, except in conditions of a sudden threat or challenge to the public's sense of domestic well-being.” --- Zbigniew Brzezinski, The Grand Chessboard, pgs. 211, 44
Sociopathy of hegemony is the real problem. A problem that is as old as hegemony, as old as mankind. It thrives on the facile mind. Consequently, the sociopaths who often rise to power easily, ensure that the public mind stays facile. Making the public mind is the first art of governance from caliphate to democracy --- for unlike a dictatorship, ruled at the point of the bayonet, caliphate to democracy depend on a measure of consent from the governed. Unless that governance is changed first, until the non sociopaths in society force their way into ruling power to devalue the villainy of the facile mind, all Divine Books will be constricted, “mahjoor” (Holy Qur’an 25:30), and the public mind shall forever remain chained to its unturning neck in Plato's Cave.
The reality is that primacy is a stronger categorical imperative of the sociopathic elites in society than morality which occupies theologians and hoi polloi. Learned people consistently fail to understand this as they variously sublimate the problems of modernity onto theology, religion, overpopulation, resource scarcity, environmental pollution, etc., without realizing that each of those “problems” are Machiavellianly amplified in the narrative space, and concomitantly harvested to drive a predetermined agenda which has nothing to do with the problem itself. For empirical examples of primacy pretexts that cunningly scapegoat and harvest religion, see Islam and Knowledge vs. Socialization ( http://tinyurl.com/Islam-Socialization ); that harvest environmental problems, see Global Warming / Climate Change - What's it all About? ( http://tinyurl.com/Global-Warming-A-New-Religion ). The fact that this is openly admitted by the mainstream press that Global Governance is piece-meal enabled by these pretexts (which they call “crises”) which will naturally culminate in one-world government, see Response to Financial Times Gideon Rachman's 'And now for a world government' ( http://tinyurl.com/And-now-for-a-world-government ).
Primacy is the first order dilemma plaguing mankind. It cannot be cured with more laws, or morality transposition, be these from theism, atheism, or secular humanism. Because primacy fundamentally sees itself as amoral; beyond the bounds of the calculus of morality. And this logically follows from the natural Darwinian order, the laws of nature, the survival of the fittest. Primacy has in the past, and will in the future, continue to act upon its own categorical imperatives, while concerned citizens, too naïve to understand primacy, look hither and thither. A recent example of this misdirection is in the Documentary Thrive, for which this scribe penned his vexed vivisection: The Road to No Where: The Journey of Voluntary Servitude (see http://tinyurl.com/Primacy-The-Road-to-No-Where ).
The first-cause problem for civilizations, from time immemorial, is primacy of their elite; their drive for a homogenized mono-culture in a one-world empire in our own modernity, only temporarily disguised from the masses under their respective flags. Not the lack of moral codes --- for what can be better than the Golden Rule FOR EVERYONE (unlike the American Constitution and its famous Bill of Rights which apportioned inalienable rights only to those whom the founders considered full human beings of “equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them”, negroes and natives were not included in that august category); nor the misguided question of world religions. A man's religion, a society's preference for its own beliefs, their maddening inertia for reformation, at least in the twenty-first century, ought to be their own business and determined by their own needs and values. But as in the colonial era, this is taken up by the secular humanists as their new white man's burden. It is permitted to thrive under the empire's many tools of primacy. To put down world religions in the name of freedom of speech, is to push on an open door by the useful idiots as far as the empire is concerned --- for they are accomplishing its task for a song; for a mild applause, prizes, career advancement. For the house nigger mentality, it is gratifying just to bring his massa's message to his own people as “he changes from the representative of the Negro to the white man into the white man’s representative to the Negro. The tragedy is that too often he does not recognize what has happened to him.” (see http://tinyurl.com/faq-intellectual-negro ).
(c) Will to power
Nietzsche's philosophy and its impact on society is described in this scribe's essay: Morality derived from the Intellect leads to Enslavement! (see http://tinyurl.com/Superman-Morality).
(d) Social Darwinianism
This is the final-cause (end state) of Secular Humanism – When led by its ablest Nietzschean Superman, the creation of dystopia, the rule by force of the elite and the endowed, the culling of “useless eaters”, the survival of the fittest, the genetic design of masses in some scientific caste / functional hierarchy in an highly organized and controlled society. And theism, all world religions, are impediments to Social Darwinianism. This is analyzed in this scribe's open letter to Muslims: Islam vs. Secular Humanism and World Government (see http://tinyurl.com/Islam-vs-Secular-Humanism).
As the direct consequence of the dogma of Secular Naturalism and Nietzschean philosophy of “God is dead”, since there is no absolute moral law any longer, and man's existence is only by chance or by accident like any other life form, therefore, the fundamental concept of equality among mankind is specious.
Equality no more exists in nature than it does in the jungle. Is wolf equal to sheep? Why should it apply universally to man – there is nothing unique about him except for his intelligence. And that is to be prized, alongside power and might, and including those with special talents and abilities and skills that enrich human life, and of course including cunning and sophistication, all of which determine the survival of the species under the natural law of the jungle, and so it should under the social Darwinian jungle. Thus, some are more equal than others based largely on their power and utility to society. This is expressed from time immemorial in all us vs. them separations, from tribalism to ethnocentrism, sectarianism to religionism, racism to culturalism, and nationalism to patriotism. None in these collectives think the others are deserving of the same rights and privileges, and at their worst moments, during warfare, are inspired by intense hatred and demonization of the other. During peace respites, the other is merely tolerated, either because of their numbers, utility, or power. Today, by human rights conventions on fancy parchments that are only enforced as long as self-interests require that humanitarian facade. All over the world in the twenty-first century, the lesser peoples are bearing the full brunt of this principal axiom of social Darwinianism.
There is no room for altruism except as a public relations scam. There is no room for selflessness except to get simpletons and useful idiots to sacrifice themselves for those with greater cunning. Noble lies govern the behavior of Übermensch to manipulate the public mind in pursuit of their higher goals. Those unable to meet the demands of society, the “useless eaters”, must be weeded out, their breeding curtailed, their populations managed like game on reservation, and the most hardworking among them put to work in the service of the elites with crumbs thrown at their feet to keep them motivated even working harder and longer --- until they fall dead from exhaustion.
Without perceptive understanding of all that which is examined above, and making the observation that what is going on under the very nose of the public with increasing ubiquity, is not too far from what is captured in those passages, the crippled epistemology that the public mind is continually indoctrinated into, regardless of which socioeconomic class it belongs to, leads it to willingly accept the prevalent dogmas under one pretext or another.
The more educated the mind, it is observed, the more years of academic schooling it has gone through, and the more invested it is in its own successes, the more likely it is to live under crippled epistemology without even thinking of questioning it. The public mind, immersed in dogmas from birth, becomes so accustomed to that tortuous state of existence – the state of learned helplessness as psychologists prefer to call it, a state that no rational mind really ought to accept – that it comes to easily accept its servitude to ruling dogmas with as much thought to rebelling as the sheep does against the habit of mutton eating. Crippled epistemology completely determines its attitude and behavior just like the sheepdog and the shepherd's whistle do for the sheep.
The following empirical behavior is described in this scribe's analysis of current affairs titled: Imperial Surrogates and 'Terror Central' in Operation Gladio Redux. It belies all the tall claims of Pollyannaish pied pipers of all flavors who are as much victims of their own dogmatic presuppositions as the public minds they wish to lead.
George Bernard Shaw, the most insightful playwright that tiny Anglo-Saxon island of worldwide usurpation has ever produced, perceptively observed of its weight in the Preface of his 1921 book of plays, Back To Methuselah:
“[The] hard fact being that we must not teach political science or citizenship at school. The schoolmaster who attempted it would soon find himself penniless in the streets without pupils, if not in the dock pleading to a pompously worded indictment for sedition against the exploiters. Our schools teach the morality of feudalism corrupted by commercialism, and hold up the military conqueror, the robber baron, and the profiteer, as models of the illustrious and the successful. In vain do the prophets who see through this imposture preach and teach a better gospel: the individuals whom they convert are doomed to pass away in a few years; and the new generations are dragged back in the schools to the morality of the fifteenth century, and think themselves Liberal when they are defending the ideas of Henry VII, and gentlemanly when they are opposing to them the ideas of Richard III. Thus the educated man is a greater nuisance than the uneducated one: indeed it is the inefficiency and sham of the educational side of our schools (to which, except under compulsion, children would not be sent by their parents at all if they did not act as prisons in which the immature are kept from worrying the mature) that save us from being dashed on the rocks of false doctrine instead of drifting down the midstream of mere ignorance. There is no way out through the schoolmaster.”
In our own 21st century too, as in the century of George Bernard Shaw, our well-intentioned men and women of science, arts and letters, the lauded savants, domain experts and Nobel laureates, all having advanced university degrees with “learned” and “expert” prominently stamped upon their forehead, display barely a nodding acquaintance with the subject of political science; and mostly only with its name. The few who do inevitably go to work for the Superman of empire. Their only god has always been power, and Mephistopheles, not truth, not compassion, and not concern for the lesser humanity despite oft rehearsed public relations in “humanist” terms. These are the vulgar propagandists, the pied pipers whom the rest of the super-educated useful idiots of modernity, the well-intentioned “likkha-parrha jahils”, hold sacred as if it was all revealed in the Sinai. Siding with the tales of the emperor is also always “legal” and mostly safe (so long as the emperor remains in power of course), often bringing with it the unbridled opportunities to profit, open doors, entry visas, social standing, the privilege to flatter one's ego, and the gratification to carry the white man's burden. All of which easily blur any remaining distinction between ideological mercenaries, and mere pimps and prostitutes, useful idiots, and Uncle Toms. Once the false narratives are uttered, it comes to make not even two straws worth of difference who is a propagandist by malevolent creed, who by opportunism, who by ignorance, and who by psychological dispensation.
All these brilliant savants of modernity, both man and Superman, the perennial breed in every society who hold the pens, lead its rocket science, and make its public's mind, have been educated to the point that adding two plus two correctly is their most dreaded pons asinorum, taxing both their mind and their consciences so feverishly that it is never to be crossed publicly.
George Bernard Shaw couldn't have spoken a more truer half-sentence in his entire half-century of most perceptive and progressive writings than this one: “Thus the educated man is a greater nuisance than the uneducated one: indeed it is the inefficiency and sham of the educational side of our schools ... that save us from being dashed on the rocks of false doctrine instead of drifting down the midstream of mere ignorance.”
The remaining half-sentence this sanguine bedrock of moral sanity left unstated, perhaps only due to some polite consideration for the British empire then on the wane, and not due to being victim of the schoolmasters he lamented: the description of the empirical Superman who already exists. That brilliant Social Darwinian among the Neo-Darwinians, infested with extreme predatory instincts and extreme pathological evil, who replaced God after Nietzsche killed Him in the name of giving birth to the immanent Superman of the future! Instead, Shaw, just as immoderately as the Neo-Darwinians, misattributed the mayhem that he was witnessing in the aftermath of World War I: “At the present moment one half of Europe, having knocked the other half down, is trying to kick it to death, and may succeed: a procedure which is, logically, sound Neo-Darwinism.” to the rule of the infirm: “Government and exploitation become synonymous under such circumstances; and the world is finally ruled by the childish, the brigands, and the blackguards.” (Ibid.) That is perhaps only three-quarters truth, or half-truth, and not the whole truth.
The world was then, as it is today, from behind the scenes of the idiocy of political governments, ruled firmly by the rational and calculated primacy instincts of the most brilliant Superman who continually divine wars, and World Wars, now we are up to World War IV, as the means of crisis creation to piece-meal remake World Order in their own image.
In fact, the educated man controlling the narrative as the avant-garde in intellectual thought, not only remains a greater nuisance than the uneducated one, he also becomes the vile propagandist by adopting silence about truth that is to be protected from the masses. The British novelist and essayist Aldous Huxley most insightfully understood this about distortions fashioned by omissions and its practical utility in influencing public behavior. Huxley observed in the Preface of his 1931 book of fable, Brave New World, which depicted a eugenist dystopia controlled by ubermensch forces from behind the scenes that the rest of society remained unaware of:
'The greatest triumphs of propaganda have been accomplished, not by doing something, but by refraining from doing. Great is truth, but still greater, from a practical point of view, is silence about truth. By simply not mentioning certain subjects, by lowering what Mr. Churchill calls an “iron curtain” between the masses and such facts or arguments as the local political bosses regard as undesirable, totalitarian propagandists have influenced opinion much more effectively than they could have done by the most eloquent denunciations, the most compelling of logical rebuttals.'
In a talk given to the students at the University of California, Berkeley, on the thirtieth anniversary of the publication of the Brave New World, Aldous Huxley observed of the very real and empirical role of these behind the scenes forces depicted in his fable, in channeling the public mind that is already most carefully primed by Shaw's schoolmaster for celebrating ignorance, into complete voluntary surrender to the Superman:
'You can do everything with bayonets except sit on them! If you are going to control any population for any length of time you must have some measure of consent. It's exceedingly difficult to see how pure terrorism can function indefinitely. It can function for a fairly long time, but I think sooner or later you have to bring in an element of persuasion. An element of getting people to consent to what is happening to them. Well, it seems to me that the nature of the Ultimate Revolution with which we are now faced is precisely this: that we are in process of developing a whole series of techniques which will enable the controlling oligarchy who have always existed and presumably always will exist, to get people actually to love their servitude! This is the, it seems to me the ultimate in malevolent revolution shall we say.'
We see precisely that reality unfurl today. Shaw's educated childish fools impervious to political science, and brigands and blackguards, controlled by Huxley's oligarchic forces from behind the scenes, attempting to persuade the public mind to accept Alice in Wonderland absurdities as fact.
We even observe how willingly the world public traveling through American airports surrender themselves to grotesque indignities in physical searches to keep them safe from Ali Baba. The only truly global superpower in the history of earth's civilizations, which Zbigniew Brzezinski in his 1996 Mein Kampf, The Grand Chessboard – American Primacy and Its Geostrategic Imperatives, characterized as: “America is not only the first, as well as the only, truly global superpower, but it is also likely to be the very last.” (pg. 209), has been reduced to a police-state with virtually its own public's consent.
All on the mere fable that Ali Baba wielding some antediluvian and distorted dogmas from the stone-age propagandistically titled “militant Islam”, is a ubiquitous threat to their well-being! Pakistan is daily bombed by drones based on that very same fable. The world is rapidly being reduced to a global police-state based on that same fable.
So now we arrive at seeking understanding of the limits to knowability of reality. What can't be objectively knowable by any mind, human or alien, is the hard limit. The soft limit to objective knowability is characteristically human and it can only be extended to the degree that a human mind can naturally expand, analyze, scrutinize and synthesize objectively, and overcome its own subjectivity, conformity, and asininity while retaining insight and intuition. There is a hard limit to this that is individual specific and depends on their natural genetic makeup. In the preceding sections we have already seen the many pernicious traps that easily ensnare the human mind into crippled epistemology. The epistemological limit problem was first described by this author in the case study: Why is the Holy Qur'an so easy to hijack? Part-IV.
While natural programming of the human mind may appear to be a fine point to those unfamiliar with the making of the human mind, it is a crucial one nevertheless. Epistemology, how we know what we know, cannot be ignored in any learned scholarship that claims to be in genuine pursuit of “knowing”, the discovery of what is, without imparting any personal coloring of one's own to it. Meaning, keeping the observer and the observed separate and non-influencing, often impossible in social sciences where man is observing his own species. And of course, also impossible in the Schrödinger's cat physics paradox, of the act of observation itself disturbing the observed, and therefore making it paradoxical to learn what was the state of the observed before one tried observing it! Meaning, if there is a cat in a black box, and the cat is found dead upon opening the box, was it also dead before the box was opened, or was it only found dead upon observation. In the human sense, since the mind that is being used to understand the world, is part of that world itself, there is an automatic self-referential limit to what is objectively knowable. It is the limiting factor of epistemology whereby the judgment of the mind not only colors what is being observed, but is unable to objectively observe itself. It carves a self-limit for discovering what is using the scientific method. Its well-known processes, which basically involve four recursive steps, or stages, any of which may be absent or combined in a given endeavor: (1) theorizing, hypothesizing, modeling; (2) testability (of the model), observability, reproducibility (by others); (3) measurability, quantifiability; and (4) predictability, anticipatability (based on the model); cannot deal with self-reference.
That fundamental limit was discovered/proved by the twentieth century Austrian logician, mathematician and philosopher, Kurt Friedrich Gödel, and has come to be known as Gödel's incompleteness theorem. How far does this fundamental limit extend from its self-referential hard limit clearly depends on the observer. Some minds are more limited in their abilities to be objective than others and hence encounter the limits of knowability sooner than they need to. The ultimate knower of all things therefore, even by its philosophical definition, the one who can transcend this hard limit, is the one outside of the domain of all things. That is the definition of God, both philosophically as well as mathematically. And it is precisely that definition of God that is also categorically expressed in the Holy Qur'an.
Only God can be the Knower of all things. Aleem. It is no surprise that Aleem is among the 99 names of God in the Holy Qur'an, each name expressing a characteristic of God that can only apply to God in its most superlative degree. Which is why postulating the existence of God is so much easier than proving His existence --- the superlative degrees can only apply to the one who is by definition God. Which is why atheism that seeks only empiricism as its standard for argument and falsification falls on its face philosophically. Agnosticism is philosophically far more tenable and even sensible. And the super atheist of the twentieth century, Lord Bertrand Russell, admitted it as such in his debate with a priest in New York in 1948 that was broadcast by the BBC (see The Existence of God – A debate between Bertrand Russell and Father F. C. Copleston, Chapter 13, Why I am not a Christian, Routledge), that atheism cannot be proved or disproved, just as theism cannot be proved or disproved, and therefore they are both similar in terms of having beliefs on either end of the spectrum which cannot be falsified, and consequently the more tenable state is that of agnosticism. While empiricism is neutral towards both if we ignore existence as a self-evident proof in itself, philosophy swings the balance on the side of theism. Atheism is an absurdity of the one-half brained creature quite unlike the logical Mr. Spock who would straightforwardly see the philosophical logic of at least a philosophical God, one who can know all things, one who is not constrained by the material laws of nature and above it by definition. But when laws of nature is made god, then that axiom automatically precludes the existence of a philosophical God, and thus remains crippled philosophically by accepting the limits to knowability. Nothing is knowable outside of the laws of nature [natural secularism], which is limited by empiricism as its defining epistemology.
By definition then, accepting the limits to knowability confines knowability, alongside the imagination to believe that something greater than what's knowable by the mind can exist. If one accepts such limits to existence, one can really not make any sensible or rational statement of what one admits is beyond the realm of existence, i.e., nothing exists outside of the laws of nature. Thus, atheism remains crippled by absurdity as it ventures to make a negative statement outside the limits of its own self-defined limits to knowability. The atheist dug his own grave by making the laws of nature his supreme god because Gödel's incompleteness theorem provides a hard mathematical limit to perfect knowability, or perhaps better stated, proof of perfect knowability that what is knowable within the laws of nature is both complete and self-consistent. Since there is nothing outside of the laws of nature as the atheist's axiom of faith, his knowledge remains subjected to Gödel's incompleteness theorem. Therefore with his incomplete knowledge, he cannot deny that something does not exist for such an assertion logically requires complete and perfect knowledge in order to provably know what exists and what does not exist. For the theist however, the laws of nature are but a part of creation, like all other creation, even if the former may appear to be mechanistically governing the inner workings of the rest of creation. And thus, philosophically at least, there can exist one who can know beyond the laws of nature by being outside of the creation that is governed by the laws of nature! It violates no principle of logic to imagine it and is self-consistent with its own axiom of faith of theism. Ergo, God! An entity that is not governed by the laws of nature by definition, but who created the laws of nature as God, and transcends His own creation.
To Mr. Spock's fascination, the Holy Qur'an introduced man to just such a philosophically adjudicated God, self-consistent with the mathematical idea that in order to have perfect knowledge of a system, one must exist outside of it, and beyond it, and if one postulates that it is possible to have perfect knowledge of the system that is governed by the laws of nature, then one is also compelled to postulate God who must exist outside of that system. It is only logical. And conversely, in order to deny that God exists, one must also deny that perfect knowledge can exist, and then one is caught in one's own inconsistency trap for one cannot assert something does not exist if one accepts that perfect knowledge does not exist. For only perfect knowledge can provably claim what does and does not exist! Q.E.D.
Atheists who by definition claim absolute knowledge by asserting the negative, die by the hand of reductio ad absurdum. Which is why Bertrand Russell, as the philosopher-mathematician who understood logic, was way smarter than his modern progeny to quickly squirrel out of that charge of atheism by claiming agnosticism. And he did so in the very second sentence uttered by him in that debate with Father F. C. Copleston! For the sensible types who accept hard limits to knowledge amenable to both logic and the human mind and who don't make absurd claims beyond its logical purview, there is natural limits to perfect knowing. This has direct implications for epistemology and assertive axioms of faith which are its consequent; statements that cannot be proved to be true and are simply assumed to be true by faith alone because they might appear sensible, obvious, appeal to the heart or mind, or for convenience. The entire Euclidean Geometry is built upon such an axiom of faith for instance, that parallel lines don't meet at infinity! No one can prove this axiom to be true but it is both convenient and sensible under the assumption of non-relativistic physics in everyday existence.
Now that we better understand the unconquerable hard limits to knowing, to objective study, to absolute knowledge, that man is not God, and also understand the role of axioms in epistemology, it is easier to accept even the softer but somewhat more conquerable limits to knowing that are the consequent of our very nature of being a socialized species which defines our worldview from birth. It outlines and confines our “system” of existence so to speak. This human system has its own set of axioms, its presuppositions of faith, values, and beliefs that become ingrained into cultures and civilizations and which are taught to its every new generation born as “truths”. This natural human process of socialization and cultural memory creates a self-perpetuating system of subjectivity, and of myths that come to govern even the minutest details of daily lives spanning the gamut of existence from behavior to beliefs.
Even if there was no deliberate social engineering to make the public mind in calculated directions, the nature of human societies by definition creates social control that is beholden not always to a group of people, but to shared memory, shared habits, shared ethos, all of which drive the social norms and values, and consequently both individual and collective behavior. In other words, to be part of society is to be part of some behavior and belief control system by definition. To get an accurate and more objective knowledge of our own “system”, we have to extract ourselves from the confines of our worldviews and baseless presuppositions, and rise above them. The truth of this statement is most assuredly beyond doubt. It is in fact self-evident. No reasonable person can deny its commonsense even from their own daily experience of life. The uncomfortable fact that the subconscious human tendency towards a priori conclusions and predisposition, despite all earnest protestations of due diligence in having no presuppositions, appears to be the inherent nature of socialization bias, and of the subjectivity therein, and of the religiosity and self-righteousness conferred to one's socialized perspective, makes it hard to transcend our ingrained worldviews. Recall from the text in Part-II that the left and right half brains are abstractions of the logic and intuition functions of the mind loosely mapped to the brain geography and not necessarily a hard physical demarcation. Logic and rational reasoning abilities of the IQ (Intelligence Quotient) dominated left-half brain is quite unable to penetrate that socialization shield of soft bias subconsciously built up by the EQ (Emotional Quotient) dominated right-half brain. The latter evidently cocoons, or at least interferes with, the left-half's logic function of the mind in as yet unquantifiable but still visibly undeniable ways.
This visibility of their being separate functional entities that directly affect the understanding of reality is easily seen in the marked contrast between the characters of Mr. Spock and Captain Kirk in the Star Trek fable explored in Part-II. It is mentioned here only as a reminder of the full context of how the non-logic subjective mind can both help and hinder the objective logic mind. The only effective antidote to overcome the hindrance aspect which cripples human epistemology and the consequent understanding of reality, is increasing self-awareness. One must rationally attempt to compensate for all the accumulated filters of years of socialization biases by new cognitive filters that can negate their distortion effects of subjectivity. Know thy self to know the world! In electrical engineering parlance, it's like having compensation filters in the signal processing path to improve its signal to noise ratio – an analogy more apt for social sciences than may first be apparent to the un-initiated. Think of tuning an AM radio signal. It uses a tuned LC circuit to reject the noise and extract and amplify the broadcast signal. Un crippled epistemology in the social sciences as well as in physical sciences that purports to understand and know reality the way it is, shares this common characteristic --- the requirement to remove the layers of noise first in order to even receive the signal. Its accurate detection, extraction, decoding, verification of correct decoding, and making sense comes much later. History is exactly like that --- wrapped in accumulated layers of generations of socialized noise and willful as well as subconscious self-interests. The narratives that survive do so either by rulers' sanctions, or by oral history that is passed from generation to generation until it gets penned when the new rulers permit it. What is the signal? It needs that basic AM radio tuned circuit abstraction for detection, extraction, and making sense!
This is perhaps why the Holy Qur'an, while accepting socialization as a human fact of God's own Creation, has also laid such categorical emphasis on striving for “haq” (knowing reality, truth, justice, calling a spade a spade even against one's own self) under all conditions, for everyone among mankind, whereby, striving for overcoming one's “nafs”, the personal inclination and whim due to natural bent of mind, proclivity, socialization, predisposition, self-interests, and desires and fears (both conscious and subconscious), is termed the greater jihad and is made a hard co-requisite to the reflective study of the Holy Qur'an (for instance see Surah Al-Waqia, 56:78-79: “In a Book well-guarded, Which none shall touch but those who are clean (purified)”).
This is also why the sensible first order model of a cryptogram ciphertext from which the plaintext message needs to be accurately extracted, with graduated access control to its meaning based on shedding all biases as precondition, developed in this study is the most apt model for logically deciphering the message contained in this most unique Book of all books. Without this perceptive model that lends some measure of objectivity to the study of the Holy Qur'an, socialization bias virtually determines its entire meaning for both an individual and his society. That exercise of socialization, for the lack of a more sanitizing description, lays the first foundation of indoctrinating systems to control public behavior. For religion to have any philosophical significance beyond man-made as a method of social control, and beyond personal as a method of self-catharsis and self-gratification, meaning, for religion to be viewed as being of Divine origin and Divine purpose as the Divine Guidance from a Transcendental Source rather than of human origin, accurately deciphering its specification irrespective of the observer, mandates such a rational model for understanding it.
The fact that virtually zero understanding of this aspect of social science is betrayed by any notable Muslim scholar that has passed by this scribe's slovenly gaze over the years of his study, bespeaks of the moribund state of intellectual thought in Muslim scholarship which has progressively only degenerated into incestuously self-reinforced dogmas and doctrines that find scant support in the Determinates of the Holy Qur'an.
The proof of that pudding is in its eating. It is self-evident by just looking at the state of Muslims and at the state of the enemies of Muslims – both are driven almost exclusively by their respective socialized predisposition instead of what the Good Book itself says. The same text is interpreted by them based on their own narrow socialization bias when subconscious, and pathetic self-interests when conscious. The staunchest enemies of the Muslims, the Jews, are driven exclusively by their blind hatred of Prophet Muhammad and Islam, just as they are driven by their blind hatred of Christ and Christianity – although the two are today cozy bed fellows of strange mutual convenience with the Jew wagging the goy in their combined onslaught against Islam and Muslims – and both enemies of Muslims exaggerate and amplify their hatred along their respective narrow socialization biases in about the same measure as the Shia and Sunni Muslims are each driven by their blind love of Prophet Muhammad and Islam, while differing in their respective understanding exactly along their own narrow socialization biases. Qualitatively, to the observant student of sociology at least, one who has succeeded in distancing himself to some measure from what he is observing, these are different manifestations of the same primary phenomena: socialization under crippled epistemology. It yields a plentiful harvest of useful idiots for Machiavelli and Übermensch.
The Case Study in Mantra Creation in the report on The Mighty Wurlitzer explains how the socialization biases and cultural memories of the unwary public are cunningly harvested for their own perception management. Specific attention is paid to the works of Edward Bernays and political psychologists referenced therein --- a social science field that appears to be entirely foreign to the Muslim intellect. That unsophisticated public mind, Muslim and non Muslim alike, is easy picking for the diabolical Western hegemons who have today penetrated not just psychology and behavior control, but are rapidly moving towards full spectrum human control. See Zbigniew Brzezinski's presaging in Between Two Ages, Aldous Huxley's dystopic fable: Brave New World, and Aldous Huxley's talk at the University of California, Berkeley, titled The Ultimate Revolution, March 20, 1962, all fully referenced and examined in The Mighty Wurlitzer, ibid., to realize how little independence of thought even an intellectual really exercises upon his own mind today.
The trifecta of the forces of nature, nurture, and perception managers all conspire to extract obedience and conformity from the human mind. The truly independent mind may exist only in philosophy, in fables, and as an abstraction. It arguably cannot exist in socialized man. Especially when he is compelled to “United We Stand”. Self-serving forces of co-option and cognitive dissonance ensure that outcome, often subconsciously when one is not an outright mercenary or superman. This complex reality directly colors the acquisition of knowledge, and the subsequent expression of knowledge. Especially for studying the untermensch, the lesser peoples, meaning others different from us, their belief systems, their value systems, their histories, their literatures, and their civilizations whence one man's treasures become another man's trash.
A telling quote from Lord Thomas Babington Macaulay of the British Empire, speaking to the British Parliament to redefine the Indian subcontinent's education policy under British colonial rule, captures the veritable truth of these words which have universal import for the pursuit of all social sciences:
“I have no knowledge of either Sanscrit or Arabic. But I have done what I could to form a correct estimate of their value. I have read translations of the most celebrated Arabic and Sanscrit works. I have conversed, both here and at home, with men distinguished by their proficiency in the Eastern tongues. I am quite ready to take the oriental learning at the valuation of the orientalists themselves. I have never found one among them who could deny that a single shelf of a good European library was worth the whole native literature of India and Arabia. The intrinsic superiority of the Western literature is indeed fully admitted by those members of the committee who support the oriental plan of education.” --- Minute on Indian Education, Minute by the Hon'ble T. B. Macaulay, dated the 2nd February 1835
While the aforementioned example is one of shocking denigration from a colonizing power flushed with the hubris of imperialism and suffering from the superiority complex of all conquerors, the same qualitatively applies in converse as well, when one is hagiographically studying one's own civilization, literature, history, or religion, and gloats as Macaulay does in the above example. Also when one is suffering from an abject inferiority complex as the colonized and enslaved people and studying the ruling class whereby everything that is one's own is deemed inferior and unworthy. It is often accompanied by a mad rush to adopt everything foreign, from ideas, language, and solutions to objects, lifestyles, and amenities.
The first step towards objectivity therefore, on any subject, is none other than becoming aware of one's own innate subjectivity, and its immersion in crippled epistemology, and confronting it head on. Everything else just follows from it.
No sensible person can deny the truth of these words for the matter is self-evident. Except perhaps when applying to one self. This scribe has yet to meet a person, from the man of cloth to the man of science, arts, humanities, or letters, who believes he is anything but objective! That is the tragedy of man from time immemorial; living and dying self-righteously off of a crippled epistemology! Which is why this scribe calls this age the Age of Jahiliya. It is an age from which self-awareness has been most cunningly stripped off and substituted with, as Zbigniew Brzezinski put it in Between Two Ages, “narrow-gauged specialists or superficial generalists”. This makes for a perfect golden age for the Machiavellian scientific controllers behind the scenes as depicted in Plato's Allegory of the Cave. The age, and the methods of human behavior control in that age, go hand in hand:
“In the technetronic society the trend seems to be toward aggregating the individual support of millions of unorganized citizens, who are easily within the reach of magnetic and attractive personalities, and effectively exploiting the latest communication techniques to manipulate emotions and control reason.
Reliance on television—and hence the tendency to replace language with imagery, which is international rather than national, and to include war coverage or scenes of hunger in places as distant as, for example, India—creates a somewhat more cosmopolitan, though highly impressionistic, involvement in global affairs.” --- Zbigniew Brzezinski, Between Two Ages, 1970, pg. 11
The possibilities of scientific human control in the technetronic society is also examined in great depth in Bertrand Russell's Impact of Science on Society, 1952, where the British Fabian philosopher of the oligarchic ruling class made the argument for absolute control of the masses finally being made possible in the modern scientific era. It was the same wine in a new bottle which was corked by Zbigniew Brzezinski for the same oligarchy in Between Two Ages some two decades later. The British philosopher observed that global scientific control in a world police-state is the only effective way for a stable society to exist in which all the undesirable useless eaters have been population controlled like game on a natural preserve, and the preferred races, mainly the European white man, given unlimited liberty to procreate their superior progeny at will. Russell's purpose being the same as Brzezinski's, Huxley's, Wells', and many others going all the way back to Plato. While the latter was warning the public against the Übermensch social engineers with the best of intent to have noble men become their wise shepherd as the philosopher-king, others arguably presaged the techniques of mind manipulation and behavior control as a self-serving self-fulfilling prophecy for the Social Darwinian Übermensch continuing as their natural shepherd in the scientific era just as he has been from time immemorial with more primitive techniques:
“There is, it must be confessed, a psychological difficulty about a single world government. The chief source of social cohesion in the past, I repeat, has been war: the passions that inspire feeling of unity are hate and fear. These depend upon the existence of an enemy, actual or potential. It seems to follow that a world government could only be kept in being by force, not by the spontaneous loyalty that now inspires a nation at war.” --- Bertrand Russell, Impact of Science on Society, 1952, Chapter 2, General Effects of Scientific Technique, pg 37
As one can easily see, these dystopic forces of social engineering have direct implications for the creation, promulgation and acquisition of knowledge; for both suppression of accurate knowledge, and for making it difficult to acquire the pertinent facts and analysis in a timely manner when its widespread public disclosure can prevent a fait accompli. Control of knowledge, of reporting of events of history and current affairs, and of the perceptive understanding of these matters, is the cornerstone of controlling humanity. Control, control, control, is the mantra of the superman in every era --- Why? Because he claims to know best because of his higher intelligence, greater wealth, or the privilege of being closer to God, if not god himself. Aldous Huxley warned of the grotesque reality of that style of social control for inducing voluntary servitude, and the arrival of the scientific era which is enabling this brave new world of engineered social control at an accelerated pace. Huxley called it the era of the Ultimate Revolution in social control, an era in which people can be made to love their servitude:
'You can do everything with bayonets except sit on them! If you are going to control any population for any length of time you must have some measure of consent. It's exceedingly difficult to see how pure terrorism can function indefinitely. It can function for a fairly long time, but I think sooner or later you have to bring in an element of persuasion. An element of getting people to consent to what is happening to them.
Well, it seems to me that the nature of the Ultimate Revolution with which we are now faced is precisely this: that we are in process of developing a whole series of techniques which will enable the controlling oligarchy who have always existed and presumably always will exist, to get people actually to love their servitude!
This is the, it seems to me the ultimate in malevolent revolution shall we say.' --- Aldous Huxley, The Ultimate Revolution, speech at the University of California, Berkeley, March 20, 1962, minute 04:06
Overcoming such dystopic forces of social engineering requires overcoming the reality captured by Brzezinski, of the macro economics of nations and the rapid pace of scientific development fashioning “narrow-gauged specialists or superficial generalists” who are content to labor hard all day long, and loving it.
This counter exercise to perverse social control requires a great deal of societal transformation in who wields its power, an exercise which is nothing short of revolutionary, the least of which, to begin its public demand, is the public:
–– acquiring a perceptive understanding of power and its role in the making of the human mind;
–– acquiring wherewithal of social forces by not merely training to become blind-folded economic widgets chasing the “American Dream”;
–– acquiring knowledge that leads to better understanding of reality and the forces that have shaped it, and continue to shape it;
–– and consequently, requiring the expenditure of a great deal of mental and physical personal energy despite the needs of the stomach and career and for which there may not be any immediately gratifying pot of gold waiting at the end of the rainbow.
A tall order to think important, let alone to pursue, in an age that is by design engineered to fashion only “a large number of men who are content to labor hard all day long”:
'The economic well-being of the nation depends on the presence of a large number of men who are content to labor hard all day long. Because men are naturally lazy they will not work unless forced by necessity to do so.' --- Bernard de Mandeville, The Fable of the Bees, 1705
These are all the very real forces behind the man-made soft limits to knowledge, difficult to overcome, but not impossible to overcome. Nevertheless, it is also not so straightforward to overcome either because in the age of universal deceit, to discover the truth is a revolutionary act!! The levels of co-option hiding in the dark recesses of the human mind, and in the human stomach, are not separated from the pursuit of this revolutionary act. And it all hinges upon the Qur'anic prescription of “jihad-un-nafs” – waging an epic battle against the self to extract oneself from the throes of crippled epistemology including self-deceit and self-interest – the first principle from which all truth shines through its protective layers.
Now we understand the full dimensions of the many impediments to both acquiring knowledge of reality the way it actually is, past and present, and using that knowledge productively rather than just for amusing ourselves when we do dare to seek it forthrightly.
As uncovered in the preceding section, the forensic attitude of a reasonable rational mind (as opposed to the dogmatic mind of the Richard Dawkins variety, the Dawkinsian clan) towards epistemology, has quite logically led to the believable hypothesis of a philosophical God. The same attitude can also help answer the age old question of whether or not Divine Revelation exists, or can exist, or is it merely figment of prophetic imagination, its originating source being the mind itself and which cannot exist from external transcendental source.
The Deist philosophers, after the compromise of separation of Church and Science in the seventeenth century – whereby the Church agreed to not interfere in the purview of science if men of science stopped making claims in the purview of the men of Church – had stopped at the threshold of philosophical God. The deists believed that there is a Creator of the Universe, the God of Nature, but did not believe in metaphysical notions of God of Nature being involved in the affairs of man, including through Divine Revelation; metaphysics was the Church's purview. It is said by historians that the founders of the New World, the United States of America, were deists in their almost secular theological dispensation. Which is why the Declaration of Independence signed by them references in the first opening sentence, both “Laws of Nature and of Nature's God”, and not religion's God, not even Christianity's, despite their being of that cultural background --- the founders evidently had supped enough from the gods of religion from which they were declaring their final separation: “When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.”
As we have already gleaned from the discussion of Secular Naturalism, and we shall revisit it again in this section later when the need arises, the founders crafted their notion of “equal station” in their New World in full accordance with the “Laws of Nature”. The New World was to be a safe haven for men of all religions, and no religion, but mainly the persecuted colonists escaping Europe, many of whom were iconoclasts of their time, and not the indigenous peoples and Negro slaves the colonists had brought to the New World to power their cotton industry. For those of “equal station” however, it was not to be the business of the new state to dictate in matters of faith; and thus came the separation of Church and State by appeal to the God of Nature, and not God of Religion!
That separation, which had come on the heels of the separation of Church and Science in Europe, was due to a political dispensation learnt from the experiences of the Dark Ages that had engulfed the European continent under the divine power of the Church, and against which polymaths of reason and philosophy had rebelled; and not because the men of science had discovered that the nature of the universe or the laws of nature itself called for that separation.
Not sufficient was known about the laws of nature then, nor is it known now, to dogmatically declare that everything is understood about how the universe works, and its basis is entirely materialism. That forced separation of convenience however, led to making the gratuitous presupposition which subsequently became codified in the epistemology of science as well as the philosophy of science, that only materialistic existence was real, the rest was the business of the Church. Only materialistic Nature and its physicality could be reasoned about, observed, measured, quantified, theorized, and hypotheses confirmed or refuted in experimentation and not just by philosophical arguments. The Greek philosophers had been notorious in their lack of experimentation; they had concentrated mainly on philosophical reasoning and logic as their principal method of understanding reality. Empiricism obviously bettered that method.
Thus modern science and its empirical scientific method was born; the inheritor of both the Hellenic civilization of antiquity, and Muslim civilization that had re-lighted and passed on the Hellenic torch of learning to the new West to spur its Renaissance. Its principal axiom however was still the dogmatic separation that Church and Science had agreed upon under duress from each other, and which removed from the ambit of science not just all non physicality, but also all metaphysical and teleological questions (along with the superstitious nonsense of course): the Aristotelian final-cause.
Materialist conception of Nature, the only philosophy of science acceptable to the Church fearing their own loss of power and reluctantly agreeing to grant concession to the primacy of science as the way to understand the physical world, became purposeless once the metaphysical domain was ab initio removed from the purview of science. Only Church could seek to answer the “why” questions, not science, and only Church could opine on the non-material aspects of the universe. That reactionary legacy of compromise with the powerful Church which continued to hound iconoclastic men of reason in the seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries despite the half way to three-quarter way into the Renaissance spur, continues to dog the fundamental paradigm of science to this very day in the twenty-first century. Unfortunately, it is no longer remembered by the Young Naturalist scientists and philosophers how we got here since the axioms of separation due to the seventeenth century dysfunction have become sanctified into sacred “truths” of modern science.
With that brief overview of how we got to the modern sacred dogmas of both materialist reason and materialist science, the combined contribution of deists and atheists who desired separation from the dogmaticism of the Church, we return to the foundational question that divides theism from atheism. If the philosophical God is logical, why isn't Divine Revelation? While the former is abstract, the latter is concrete --- for it is a claim made by existent Scripture(s) that can now be falsified. The preceding section enables us to get a more objective (and less dogmatic) handle on this question than is possible without the perceptive understanding of epistemology and how its presuppositions determine process outcomes. Now, the source which makes the claim to Divine Origin, whether a Book or claim to Prophethood, instead of outright rejection based on the materialistic dogma, can be put under objective forensic scrutiny to decipher what precisely is it saying in its core guidance principles and does its religion fit the philosophical God; independent of the observer making the scrutiny, and using only philosophical truths as the first order criterion for adjudication.
Let's quickly review how we arrived at the philosophical God in the preceding section before we delve into the question of Divine Revelation. It is, after all, an intense dose of high potency intellectual vitamins and reminding ourselves of its logic is necessary for full absorption. In order to accept or reject the reasoning, one must be clear as to what precisely it is. If we have understood the concept that Divine Revelation implies a Transcendental Source, let's just abstractly call that God for the lack of a more familiar term, then we can look for evidence in the Prophetic Text of God being its Author, or man being its author, to confirm or deny that hypothesis of Divine Revelation by first understanding what is meant by that word God. We have already seen the philosophical God arising both mathematically and philosophically in the above discussion --- as the consequence of Gödel's incompleteness theorem. An entity that must be above all else in order to have complete and self-consistent knowledge of that below it (mathematical necessity); the Creator of all things except itself, not bound by the laws that govern its creations and consequently having perfect knowledge of its creations that is both complete and self-consistent; it itself being complete and self-consistent (philosophical necessity because there is nothing else above it and the premise of perfect knowledge demands that it terminate on God) with perfect knowledge of itself as well all its creations. This is philosophical God.
If we accept that philosophical definition of God on the premise that perfect knowledge can exist, and we have seen in the preceding discussion that it can only exist in the philosophical God as the consequence of Gödel's incompleteness theorem, then we have the opportunity to examine the hypothesis of Divine Revelation and compare against the definition of philosophical God. By that philosophical definition, God cannot Author a Divine Guidance for its creation, namely, human beings, that is inconsistent, or incomplete for the purpose that it is created, especially when it itself claims to be both perfect and complete Guidance as the Holy Qur'an does, the only Divine Text in existence today that claims to be the direct Words of God (and not merely “inspired words” as claimed for the New Testament of the Bible by its adherents): “This day have I perfected for you your religion and completed My favor on you and chosen for you Islam as a religion;” (verse 5:3). Or, obviously, the hypothesis of it being from the philosophical God is naturally falsified. In the case of the religion of Islam, this falsification criterion is the strongest among all contenders to Divine Revelation because of this categorical claim made by its Scripture, the Holy Qur'an. Other scriptures can also be falsified on the same basis even though none of them claim to be the direct word of God. But their absolutist principles are deemed to be from God and can thus stand falsification.
It cannot be the philosophical God's work if it hides fallacies, absurdities, inconsistencies (due to self-consistency requirement of perfect knowledge), or is incomplete (due to completeness requirement of perfect knowledge), or is inaccurate (due to perfection requirement of perfect knowledge). This is a rational and fairly objective logical criterion for falsifying the hypothesis of the philosophical God being the Author of any claim to Divine Revelation.
And any God that is less than the philosophical God, cannot really be God – the Creator of all Existence in Nature and Itself beyond it.
Hence all conceptions of God must minimally satisfy the philosophical God condition that is the direct consequence of Gödel's incompleteness theorem. And the philosophical idea of what that entity would be if it had complete and self-consistent knowledge of the highest order system, namely that of all existence in nature. Other attributes that are generally applied to God are religion specific and nothing to do with the philosophical God. These include beliefs about God such as God being Most Beneficent, Most Merciful, Most Just, etc. etc. etc. Religion and its scripture give these attributes to God and these are unfalsifiable beliefs. When one accepts a religion on faith, one also accepts these attributes of God on faith, just like one accepts Afterlife, Day of Judgment, Heaven and Hell, etc. Thus, while Muslims believe in Islam as the Divine Revelation and its conception of God includes those aforementioned attributes and beliefs, the ancient Greeks accepted the plethora of their own mythological gods like Zeus et al. who, as their mythologies depicted, were unjust, fickle minded, selfish, jealous, tempestuous, and played their heavenly power-games amongst each other using the earthly humans as their proxies. If a divine scripture is claimed to be Divine Revelation from God, the Word of God (or the underlying principles being from God), then it must minimally satisfy the condition of the philosophical God, complete and self-consistent, or the hypothesis is trivially falsified.
This is of course only the rational and reasonable Rejection Criterion for the divine hypothesis. The question however remains: is it also a rational and reasonable Acceptance Criterion when the hypothesis cannot be falsified by the Rejection Criterion?
For even the most objective human mind --- that latter question must still ultimately reduce to the response from the non-quantifiable capacity of his right half brain, intuition and insight, after the left half brain has done its job of filtering out the chaff from the wheat in accordance with its logic and reasoning capacity. This is a rational utilization of the whole mind whereby both reason and intuition are permitted to play their symbiotic role to reach a human conclusion (as opposed to solely the materialist's conception of reason that denies intuition as a valid source of understanding reality unless it can be reduced to some kind of empirical physicality). It is also why, although belief in a philosophical God is based entirely on reasonable exercise of logic and reason, belief in a religion, usually the one in which one is socialized, is often based on emotional and spiritual exercise, its appeal to the heart --- like falling in love. The distinction among emotional attachments due to 1) socialization (or indoctrination) vs 2) emotional attachment due to spiritual enlightenment and faith (including love) vs 3) emotional attachment due to capacity to appreciate what cannot be captured in materialistic and Darwinian philosophies such as appreciation of beauty (and all that which it synthesizes such as beautiful music, art, poetry), appreciation of the profound (and all that which it synthesizes such as philosophy, theology, spirituality), etc., cannot be easily made. It is also not clear cut between the preceding three cases of belief through exercising the predominant right-half non-logical intuitive mind and 4), that egalitarian condition of the rational human mind in which the left-half logic mind has reasoned through the Rejection Criterion and not rejected it, and intuition / faith of the right-half mind have made the final judgment call on the Acceptance Criterion and accepted the exact same belief.
But observe that in this latter case, faith in a non materialist belief / hypothesis / non-physicality is not irrational nor whimsical because reason and philosophy, the best tools for separating chaff from wheat available to the rational mind, have exhausted their purview and if not accepted the proposition by weight of evidence, have also not been able to reject it as an absurdity.
For what is obviously beyond the bounds of physical materialism and thus beyond the purview of the scientific method, employing reason and self-evident philosophical truths is the rational approach of a non-dogmatic intellect; one not plagued by materialist presumptions of reductionist empiricism being the sole determinant of all existence. It is because of this lack of wisdom and dogged unreasonableness that all non-physicality appear equally specious in materialism's reductionist dogma which fail to distinguish among them (but its subscribers too, when it suits them, also go by faith or trust in authority figures without any empirical evidence, as the scientific world did when none rejected Nobel laureate physicist Richard Feynman's word for his own Out of Body Experiences in a sensory deprivation tank as valid experiences of reality, even though no one else could reproduce it).
That's because these human experiences are all interconnected and interrelated, and to make any clear cut among them is impossible. One's treasures in these matters cannot necessarily be proved to others because the final say must come down to what is often intensely subjective and personal --- human intuition, human insights, human feelings, the cornerstone of faith, as well as families, communities, cultures, and civilizations that share common bonds and values. To ignore these innate human traits as both sources of understanding of reality, as well as human necessity to progressively advance as fuller human beings in one's own life (from meeting materialistic and physical needs to meeting higher order spiritual needs, like from satiating reproduction needs and hunger to seeking companionship, to seeking meaning in life, to living the highest moral ideals, to reaching the pinnacle of man's existence), is to ignore substantial aspects of what truly makes us unique as human beings. Otherwise, modern sociobiology and socioneurology reveal that we are not that much different from advanced primates in our most existential functions, including what was previously deemed to be exclusively human, such as empathy, stress, revenge, group violence. It is also to willfully ignore how epistemology is crippled by gratuitous presuppositions and dogmas, further strengthening the foundations of human ignorance. This applies as much to the physical as to metaphysical.
The gratuitous presupposition of the naturalists at hand, that Divine Revelation cannot exist when a) reason alone can rather rationally lead to the hypothesis of a philosophical God as demonstrated above, and b) existence of Scriptures which claim to guide mankind towards moral ideals and which can be subjected to rational criterions to separate absurdities from meaningful truths, is just that, a dogmatic presumption born of their pseudo religious belief that all that exists in the natural order are through forces which can be reduced to physicality and mathematicized.
Without getting needlessly polemical, and holding steadfastly on to logic and reason as the yardstick to penetrate into the heart of the matter that motivates this discussion, regardless of where moral truths such as the Golden Rule mentioned previously first originated from, or which scriptures these are found in today (whether in Solon's ancient dispensation of law, or Confucius's ancient edicts, or the Bible both Old and New Testament, or the teachings of the Holy Qur'an, etc.), now that mankind has these moral truths in their possession, and many more like these, we can sure implement them --- And that too hasn't happened in the recorded history of mankind. Nor is it ever likely to see the light of day in the future. Because primacy is as strong a natural instinct in man as hunger. And it is easily facilitated by secular naturalism.
It is only the mankind's religions, held sacred in their respective scriptures, in collective memories of its respective adherents, and in rituals which continually remind mankind of these absolutist moral truths as emanating from an absolutist source and therefore not subject to man's expediencies in changing them when suited; which continually harken mankind to implement them; and which continually harken mankind to sever their bonds of servitude to the wolves among them. These truths continue to inspire people, if not always in practice, then at least in their minds as the ideals to live by. And perhaps some day these ideals may indeed transform man, but only when these moral guidance succeed in lighting the proverbial fire in the mind of man as categorical imperatives and not rituals to plan for Afterlife and to soothe the troubled conscience. Religion plays an enriching role in man's life which simply cannot be extirpated by the Descartesians. It can of course be cleansed off of its superstitions and absurdities, reformed off cultural intrusions and bold impudences of the mind of man, but not eliminated from the life of man. For, something else, something perverse, something that suits the wolves and the primacy instincts of man, shall quickly fill that void.
None other than prominent scientists with lasting contributions to science have arrived at the holistic conclusion that there can be no clear cut between materialistic reductionism and non-physicality that is precious and enriching to man. Here is world's foremost physicist of the last century, German theoretical physicist Max Planck whose work on quantum theory won him the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1918, offering his sage counsel to the one-track world of Dawkinsian scientific materialism:
“Modern physics has taught us that the nature of any system cannot be discovered by dividing it into its component parts and studying each part by itself, since such a method often implies the loss of important properties of the system. We must keep our attention fixed on the whole and on the interconnection between the parts. ... The same is true of our intellectual life. It is impossible to make a clear cut between science, religion and art. The whole is never equal simply to the sum of its various parts.” --- Max Planck
The best scientists in the world, those not narrowly and overly specialized, well understand the role subjective imagination and intuition (i.e., what appears as faith to others) plays in one's rational scientific pursuits. As Charles Townes, 1964 Nobel physics laureate, stated it:
“Science wants to know the mechanism of the universe, religion the meaning. The two cannot be separated. Many scientists feel there is no place in research for discussion of anything that sounds mystical. But it is unreasonable to think we already know enough about the natural world to be confident about the totality of forces.”
The Muslim scientist Abdus Salam, who shared the 1979 Nobel Prize in Physics with (Jewish atheist) Steven Weinberg and (Christian) Sheldon Lee Glashow "for their contributions to the theory of the unified weak and electromagnetic interaction between elementary particles", noted the role of faith in the grander discoveries of physics by first reciting verses 67:3-4 of Surah Al-Mulk from the Holy Qur'an at the Nobel podium in Stockholm during his Banquet Speech on December 10, 1979:
“Thou seest not, in the creation of the All-merciful any imperfection, Return thy gaze, seest thou any fissure. Then Return thy gaze, again and again. Thy gaze, Comes back to thee dazzled, aweary.” --- Holy Qur'an, verses 67:3-4
And then stated:
“This in effect is, the faith of all physicists; the deeper we seek, the more is our wonder excited, the more is the dazzlement for our gaze.”
Arthur Leonard Schawlow, 1981 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on lasers, observed:
“It seems to me that when confronted with the marvels of life and the universe, one must ask why and not just how. The only possible answers are religious. ... I find a need for God in the universe and in my own life.”
Even modern philosophers of the twenty-first century have begun to feel the gratuitous imposition of the Dawkinsian clan led dogma of scientific materialism prevalent in our own century which denies animism completely, especially in relation to Revelation and Prophecy that underwrite world religions.
This is Charles Taliaferro, American professor of philosophy at St. Olaf College, in his interview to Tehran Times published January 7, 2016:
“As a philosopher I believe that such skepticism about the historical Jesus and Muhammad is based on philosophical assumptions of secular naturalism which presupposes by definition that prophecy and revelation is impossible, an assumption that, in my view, is unjustified.”
The battle between the two antipodes on the validity of Divine Revelation is mainly one of dogmatic presupposition leading to crippled epistemology. But as we have also witnessed in the preceding discussion, that crippled epistemology is also easily rectified when dogma is subtracted from its ambit and its various aspects scrutinized forensically for what they are without prejudice.
It is also important to not overlook the obvious caveats that accompany this forensic exercise on a theological matter that transcends the bounds of material empiricism. Since this exercise of adjudicating upon a speech that is hypothesized as emanating from the philosophical God (our falsifiable axiom) that is both perfectly self-consistent and perfectly complete, by even the most rational of human minds that is neither, makes the exercise vulnerable to both Type 1 and Type 2 errors defined in statistics to validate hypothesis, as respectively: false positives (it is not speech of God but is incorrectly accepted as such due to incomplete or misapplied criterion), and false negatives (it is indeed speech of God but is incorrectly rejected due to incomplete or misapplied criterion).
Once again, the innate human dimension in epistemology simply cannot be ignored. It leads to greater reliance on intuition and insight – does the proposition sound right, does it appeal to the heart, even if impersonal logic or misanthropic reason may argue otherwise. For instance, reason might dictate to the utilitarian mind to kill granny and handicapped children once they become a social or family burden, but the heart rejects it outright --- and heart prevails unless forced by power. In Impact of Science on Society for example, Bertrand Russell, the father of twentieth century postmodernist atheism, offered his highest reasoning to rationalize a global dystopic police state for humanity as the most stable mechanism for governing a global scientific society, that there “would now be no technical difficulty about a single world-wide Empire”, “a world government” which “could only be kept in being by force”. No free human being can agree to live in a global prison-state just because the primacy reasoning of uber rationalists lead them to preach to the sheep that a world government managed as a global police-state is the most “stable” method of governance of a scientific society in the greater public interest.
Faith is exactly like that after all the rational scrutinizing criterions are exhausted by the rational portion of the mind. Faith appears to be innate in man. The drive for faith appears to be unlearned, like the drive for reproduction. It has persisted since time immemorial, and cannot be separated from man's existence anymore than the natural drive for reproduction can. It can, however, be replaced with crafty dogmas and false beliefs just as easily as in the past faith was dominated by specious dogmas and superstitions to create false intuitions. Faith appears to be like a natural and innate container in man – varying in size for each human being based on their natural makeup like any other human trait (such as IQ or athleticism or sense of beauty, etceteras) – pour anything into it. When the Divine spark springs in it, it can move mountains. When garbage is poured into it, it creates enslavement.
And now we also begin to perceptively appreciate why it is necessary to remove faith in the Divine from people's lives with the drive towards atheistic world Secular Humanism (previously it was with the drive towards world Communism) and Newspeak (saying one thing and meaning quite another) and Doublethink (accepting or promulgating conflicting facts and ideas). Subtraction of God from people's lives under whichever pretext, makes it easier to control them; to standardize and organize the populations in functional units; and to easily foist the worst dystopia upon them in which people just learn to love their own servitude. Goethe had captured that existence: “None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free. The truth has been kept from the depth of their minds by masters who rule them with lies. They feed them on falsehoods till wrong looks like right in their eyes.” It enables the sheep to perform their daily routines in blissful contentment, never acquiring the motivation, nor the inspiration, to rebel against their despotic shepherds; the wolves who feed off of their blood. The uncanny power of God in people's lives as a counter force to be reckoned with, is so well understood by shepherds who are the masters of social engineering, and have been so from time immemorial, that even modern fables have depicted the power of faith in liberating awakened slaves from the worst dystopia – dystopia constructed by men of highest intellect to control the public mind. Man simply cannot escape from the clutches of the Superman by Pollyannaishly closing his eyes to the dangers posed by the poisoned apples hidden underneath the syntactically sugared declarations of universal human rights made in the new sacred theology of Secular Humanism. It is indeed a theology, one that is based on the perversity of Doublethink.
As previously examined and restating for emphasis, the logical and entirely rational consequence of secular naturalism which posits that life on earth is innately purposeless, that mankind arose by sheer accident just like wildlife and wild flowers, and that natural order which governs nature and its species, also governs man, is that since there is no equality in nature (empirical observation), no altruism in nature (another empirical observation, different from empathy which is observed in some species), no justice in nature (yet another empirical observation, no sheep has ever approached the king of the jungle for justice from the wolf and not been eaten by the king itself), then why should there be voluntary equality and altruism and justice among the human species who are just another species of nature? Some are lions and some are wolves while others are sheep. What rational sense in having the same valuation for all of them? The wolves may seek equality amongst themselves, and seek altruism in their relationship with the hungry pride, but neither have any inclination to extend either to the sheep --- but both of course preach it to the sheep. How else will the wolves and lions satiate their hungers and rule their kingdom? Thus the natural order of the jungle, the natural philosophy of primacy, social darwinianism, hegemony, is the natural order for human life as well.
But of course that philosophy has to be disguised. The reality of secular naturalism cannot be practiced too openly before the sheep who are essential to the scheme of primacy. So the Secular Humanists come up with advocacy of ancient truths like the Golden Rule for everyone, lofty ideals on worthy pieces of parchment to lull the sheep to sleep as their native religion is systematically stripped from their lives. One can see the sophistry in the naturalists' arguments for man-made morality derived solely from man's intellect, not just in theory, but also empirically in the long and bloody history of primacy among mankind; a history that is still unfolding in the twenty-first century. The sheer chutzpah after the sheep have been lulled to sleep is even seen in the National Security Advisor of the United States of America writing the blueprint of superpower primacy coldly titled: The Grand Chessboard – American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives! ( Also see [a] http://tinyurl.com/Islam-vs-Secular-Humanism ; [b] http://tinyurl.com/Superman-Morality ; [c] http://tinyurl.com/Problem-Primacy-not-Scarcity ; [d] http://tinyurl.com/HGWells-Universal-Human-Rights ; [e] http://tinyurl.com/MightyWurlitzer )
It is also not persuasive to claim that reason can beget equality and altruism and justice as higher order brain functions in the more evolved superman of the future when it has shown to only beget primacy ---- and Nietzschean Übermensch is ample evidence of the culmination of that naturalists' philosophy. Secular Humanism neither has any empirical merit, nor any philosophical merit given their own sacred axiom of man's existence being accidental and purposeless like any other life form. Lack of self-consistency with their own naturalist axiom spells the death knell of the naturalists' religion of secular humanism. It exposes their sophistry of Doublethink!
The naturalists' claim of reason and natural laws as the god of man able to bring mankind equality, altruism, justice, as well as noble governments and the end to primacy, under the religion of Secular Humanism is only sophistry. It can only bring standards of the Newspeak-Doublethink variety as was witnessed in the American Declaration of Independence that is bandied about before the world as the epitome of Western Liberal Republican Constitutional Democracy (albeit the word “Democracy” itself does not occur in its verbiage). That plan of liberty conveniently excluded undesirable races who weren't deemed to be full human beings deserving of “equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them”, from its calculus of full human rights and equality. Australian colonists as recently as the 1960s were hunting for Aborigine heads as hunting trophies. Africa today, the cradle of mankind's birthplace, is shamefully impoverished and plundered for its natural wealth. The same story is repeated for South America, and the rest of the developing nations of the world that have boundless riches underneath their feet and living in abject poverty. Plundered by who?
By the primacy instincts of the secular humanist West; exercised through its institutionalized multinational corporation thuggery through neoliberal laws and free trade treaties, enforced through tax-free trade zones and protected by Western military might --- The reincarnation of East India Company in modern uniforms. The modus operandi of modern neocolonialism is not much different from the colonial era, and they boldly admit it themselves. Writing in the New York Times, Thomas L. Friedman stated in his column of March 28, 1999: “The hidden hand of the market will never work without a hidden fist -- McDonald's cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas, the builder of the F-15. And the hidden fist that keeps the world safe for Silicon Valley's technologies is called the United States Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps.”
And that colonial era of Western plunder, right after the Renaissance philosophers taught all their lovely secular theories of superiority of natural law and the primacy of reason, was the epitome of direct colonial raping of the less sophisticated civilizations by the West in the guise of la mission civilisatrice, the white man's burden. None of the finer values of secular humanism were on display as the natives were brutally harvested to serve global trade under changing European flags of one PAX or another as the sophistication of their primacy tools evolved. While the natives were taught that this slavery was for their own good. They were being civilized. And that was the price of being gifted Western civilization. The same West today, the same nations, the same races of peoples, the same inheritors of the East India Company, under the new flag of PAX Americana, are out to destroy the one thing colonists couldn't take away from the world's natives whom they otherwise lorded over as the new gods --- their religion. And this last remaining treasure, the inheritance of all mankind, is their focus of plunder for the twenty-first century in which the same white man is once again remaking world order. This time into a secular one-world empire.
The naturalist is once again coldly speaking the language of might has rights behind the facade of humanitarian platitudes, while brazenly displaying its superiority of primacy techniques. The predator makes the same arguments as before --- that this is good for the natives. That the superiority of the Western civilization is due to its secular naturalism, and it is its noble gift to all civilizations when it strives to replace mankind's antediluvian superstitious religions with the common world religion of Secular Humanism. That is the very nature of natural law, the law of social Darwinism, the survival of the fittest races, peoples, cultures and civilizations. It conquers whenever it can. It is never satiated. Neither did mankind witness equality, altruism and justice in the past from the harbingers of secular naturalism, nor is it anywhere to be seen today except in Newspeak, and nor will it be seen in the future --- because it is not in the nature of secular naturalism.
The tragedy is that the finest house niggers, mindless fools with fancy Western university degrees, are once again taken in by the chicaneries of the predators' Doublethink to begin loathing what is their own heritage. They once again labor against their own civilizations just as they did in the colonial era. The house nigger has once again taken up the white man's burden --- and for what? For the price of some applause and a meal ticket? This is not to say that those who believe in the materialist dogma, irrespective of who they are, aren't entitled to their own religion. But only to state that the primacy of every dogma, every religion, every predator, is rejected and must be confronted head on. That confrontation is the principled teaching of absolutist moral codes, and when attributed to Divine Revelation, become immutable. And that is the one remaining intellectual threat to global primacy, the spiritual threat from world religions, which is why they must all be eliminated.
In the previous sections we witnessed how axiomatic dogmas cripple epistemology. Here we have again seen the polished Machiavellian subversion of epistemology of Divine religions that only leads to the primacy of natural law. If epistemology was not crippled, not only would all self-ascribed categorical imperatives of primacy be naturally crippled, but man would be rid of all dogmas that limit its understanding of reality, and consequently, its egalitarian striving for equality, justice, peace, happiness and growth would finally materialize. The first baby step in that space is to confront primacy head on. All primacy. Howsoever it is disguised. In law, in platitudes, in Newspeak-Doublethink.
This forensic attitude to scrutinizing epistemology with some measure of objectivity, by distancing the observer from the observed, and by perceptively understanding its hard and soft limits; the sources of its corruption and motivations for its subversion, also helps rectify idiotic divisions among peoples of boundless faith who ceaselessly fight amongst themselves over insane matters. This includes infighting on purely theological matters which quickly leads to doctrinal warfare, and which can easily mutate into physical warfare. And it also helps counter Machiavelli when it too, ceaselessly, uses their inanity and senseless divisions to harness their boundless energies as useful idiots; zealots and prima donnas who unwittingly end up doing Machiavelli's diabolical bidding like puppets on a string.
About The Author
The author, a justice activist, formerly a Silicon Valley systems architect (see engineering patents at http://tinyurl.com/zahir-patents ), founded Project Humanbeingsfirst.org in the aftermath of 9/11. He was, mercifully, most imperfectly educated in the United States of America, which might explain how he escaped the fate of “likkha-parrha-jahils” mass produced from its vast manufacturing consent complex with all his neurons still intact, and still firing on all cylinders. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org . Verbatim reproduction license at: http://humanbeingsfirst.org/#Copyright .
Source URL: http://print-humanbeingsfirst.blogspot.com/2017/01/reflections-on-axioms-presuppositions.html
Excerpted From: Some Problems in Epistemology, problems 4, 5, and 6
Last updated Saturday, January 21, 2017 10:00 pm 33707 20955
Reflections on Axioms, Presuppositions, Faith, Intuition, Reason, Philosophy and their Impact on Epistemology By Zahir Ebrahim | Project Humanbeingsfirst.org