This site is the outgrowth of an off-the-cuff suggestion that, instead of providing commentary via email only to selected family and friends, I start a blog. In my emails, I seldom took the time to develop my ideas to the extent that I do in these posts. Moreover, I was a bit fast and loose with my language and sarcasm that I reserved for confidants (lucky them!). By posting some notions (some perennial, some contemporaneous) on these pages, I am constrained by the desire to discipline my writing so that it is presentable. That doesn’t mean I won’t ever let loose with both barrels when I feel it is appropriate. What it does mean is that if I pull the trigger, I will make a good-faith effort to back up whatever claims I make with documented facts as I have been able to find them using publicly available material.
A word about me: I am a retired aerospace engineering professional with a bachelor’s degree and some 35 years in the workforce. I’m a Vietnam-Era Air Force veteran who was stateside and never in harms way in my 4 years of service. Rather, I serviced fighter jet flight simulators for the Air Training Command. In my professional life, I have been involved with Navy antisubmarine warfare aircrew simulators and real-time global communications satellite operations, Minuteman ICBM logistics support, and test, launch, deployment, and operations of U.S. government satellite systems on several continents. My hobbies have included scuba diving, spearfishing, boating, flying as a private pilot, backpacking, bicycling, jogging, weight training, electronic circuit design, reading and writing.
In a nutshell, I am an equal-opportunity disbeliever. There exists only three possibilities when it comes to religion: 1) all religions are correct and their dogmas are true; 2) one religion is correct and its dogma is true while all other religions are false; 3) all religions are incorrect and their dogmas are false as well. I am in the third camp helplessly watching as those in the second camp destroy civilizations all over the world, over and over again. Campers of the first and third kind do not fly airliners into tall buildings or initiate endless wars, each claiming (and let’s not mince words here) the one desert god of the ancient Hebrews – with three different names and three different prophets – to be on their side of the conflict. Moreover, campers of the second kind routinely hide behind the fuzzy notions of religious tolerance and freedom of religious expression espoused by campers of the first kind (that usually presents as informal social sanctions known as ‘political correctness’) to advance their agenda of religious intolerance characterized by murderous hatred of infidels and apostates, and endless cycles of sectarian violence.
Madness. Utter madness.
All religions are myths and NOT facts. The practice of religion has done and continues to do more harm than good. Religious beliefs are not innate, but are learned and culturally reinforced self-delusions passed on from one generation to the next. Human morality has absolutely nothing to do with so-called ‘holy’ books, but rather is grounded in our evolved biological brains and is our birthright as human beings. (Think about this for a moment: we all know the ‘holy’ books were written by human beings, and, to the extent these books contain moral teachings, then obviously the morality already existed in the human authors. Even a child can see this.) And, human spirituality is a fact of nature that is uniquely real for each human being and grounded in the biochemistry of our brains that have evolved through the process of natural selection to make possible a physiological experience we call ‘transcendence,’ during which some people believe their god communicates with them directly. For a good read on this latter notion, check out Why God Won’t Go Away: Brain Science and the Biology of Belief by Andrew B. Newberg, Eugene D’Aquili, and Vince Rause. And for a superb reading experience on the idea that all religions are myths and not facts, please immerse yourself in Joseph Campbell’s Transformations of Myth Through Time.