I believe Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that He historically lived, died, and rose from the dead. I believe that he was the firstfruits of a great harvest of God that will include me personally at the end of time.
I believe every historical account in the Bible as historical. Concerning the most hotly-debated historical account in the Bible, I believe there is room in the account of Creation for this earth as we observe it to be very old. From the quantity of layers in ice to the quantity of rings in trees to the existence of stars millions of light years away to the number of dating methods used by both Christians and unbelievers, it seems pretty obvious that this place is far older than 6,000 years old. I see no reason to doubt that it isn’t. You might ask, “Well, how does that observation fit into our understanding of the Scripture?” I don’t know: about as well as the fact that the earth rotates around the sun fits into our understanding of the Scripture (which, if we’re strapped in by unnecessary literal interpretations, seems to dogmatically imply that the earth does not rotate). To that fact, no one bats an eye anymore. To the old age of the earth, I don’t think any Christian will be batting their eyes as more time passes.
I do not plead agnostic on the theory of evolution anymore. When I say “evolution,” I mean the theory that all complex organisms evolved from simpler and yet simpler organisms over vast periods of time. I would dispute it on social and scientific bases before a theological one. Social, in the sense that the current theory of evolution is the product of a university system that works as a blind organism. Scientific, in the sense that this kind of evolution propelled by genetic drifts, mutations, and natural selection has never been observed, is not heavily supported by the fossil record, and only exists as part of a paradigm sifting through the same observations someone who does not believe in the theory grants and uses similarly to support their own paradigm. I believe that the theory of evolution–which is that given time, two different populations of the same species will eventually become two different species–will never find valid support for itself beyond the attempted coherency of the philosophical paradigm it works under, which falls prey to the illusions of those dependent on it to make it more than just another area of human discourse, like literature and religion, which it is.
It would be a demonstration–artistic and historically intriguing–of my blood continuing the story of people I never knew. Phaedrus (c. 15B.C.-50A.D.). A cooking pot owned by Laura Ingalls Wilder. The war helmet of a French hussar. An 1857 copy of Paradise Lost. A lesser-known painting by John William Waterhouse. A Roman denarius. Arrowheads from the Potawotamie. My computer.
I would have rows and rows of shelves of these things, in no particular order, but all neatly labeled with their personal histories, like people have written for themselves in their obituaries, written by someone else. What would a helmet say for itself? Would it remember what its head’s sweat smelled like after all those years?
And my computer. I am left with few artifacts after my death, but this might be it, the most eccentric piece in the collection of my Personal Museum.
I have an opinion on vaccines. I looked briefly over their history on a website called “Wikipedia” (the article on vaccines at that website can be found here) and it seems to me that vaccines are clearly important for our culture, due to the length of that article.
If you compare, for example, the length of the Wikipedia article on vaccines to the Wikipedia articles on other important historical factors–like Hitler, Ghandi, and Jesus–you will find that, while not quite the same length as those articles, the article on vaccines is still quite a long one. And because it is a long article, I think it’s pretty obvious that vaccines are important.
Now, you might ask, I assent to your clear demonstration that vaccines are important, but why are they therefore beneficial?
It is here that I must confess the clear fundamental principles I believe all people who believe as believers of beliefs must work under and that is the principle of space-and-time consumption, or the SATC for short (it is here I choose the word “consumption” over “scale,” thereby denoting the metaphorically carnivorous nature of forward-thrusted history).
Looking back on the entirety of human history (which can be found here), from the legends which form the bulk of the fruit of our obscured communal memories, to the clear obviousness of the reality of the patriarchal society we live in now (indisputable proof of this can be found here), it is clear that our world has been shaped most strongly by historical forces which were remembered by the most people for the most amount of time. This can clearly be seen with Hitler, Ghandi, and Jesus.
The SATC, therefore, is a scale which we can first use to determine importance. If a historical force (whether it be an actor, event, trend, idea, or ongoing environment, etc) takes up both a lot of space in either the physical reality we see or the illusory reality of our minds and it takes up time, then we can move on and therefore determine it’s value. In this sense, we first figure out the quantity of its existence, then we determine its quality. We move from using the faculty of observation, then to the faculty of judgment. Once we have observed the extent of something, what therefore, does that extent actually mean?
This is both a historical and ethical question, but let’s just assume it’s the latter, because that’s easier. So, so, so you got these vaccines and they take up a lot of space, it seems, almost as much as Hitler, and what are we going to do about it?
I’ll submit something rather controversial (let the historians work out what this means later!): that something is positively ethical insofar as it stirs in our communal consciousness a sense of good ethics. In this, I am not judging the intrinsic value of something before its effect, but rather claiming that the effect of something is its intrinsic ethical value. And the effect of vaccines has been mounting campaigns on the internet (specifically blogs by moms), however non-unanimous, of people defending their personal ethical beliefs about vaccines, ethical dialogues which would not have existed had vaccines not had the impact on the SATC as they have had. And the creation of further ethical dialogues is a good.
Therefore, are vaccines good in all times and in all places?
“Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit’—yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.” – James
This is our anthem for ambitions and visions of the future.