Scientific Advance is Predicated on Philosophical Advance

Dear Friends,

It seems to me… you cant have warp drives, until you have the philosophy to invent them. A prerequisite for technological advancement is human hearted philosophical advancement. In other words, before science can advance, there needs to be the philosophical foundation for it first. Just as medicine needed the philosophical advance, that accepted human dissection for medical research is moral, before it could advance beyond leeches and toadstools. Aristotle originally wanted to be a natural philosopher, a scientist perhaps a botanist, but the state of science at the time made such an endeavor useless, so he went into the area that advanced the philosophy, so those pursuits in the sciences could be made. This is a natural mitigating factor in keeping scientific advance behind philosophical advance. It protects us from ourselves. Problems come in however when barbarians conquer more advanced peoples and gain technology which they couldn’t have created, are ill equipped to understand the ramifications of, but are more than willing to use. The higher the level of technology the more dangerous this principle becomes.

Each scientific advance was preceded by a philosophical advance. The creating of the gun and cannon was preceded by Christianity. Others had black powder for centuries before, and many had put it to some use, but hadn’t made guns. It was only after the widespread adoption of Christianity and it’s often ignored doctrines of, love thy neighbor as thyself, Do unto others as you would have others do unto you, let he who is without sin cast the first stone, turn the other cheek, etc… These concepts had been known and indeed some are the foundations of Confucianism and Buddhism, but no one had combined them the way Jesus had, and so, as a combined group they did what they had not individually, giving rise to an emergent philosophy leading to a leap in humanity’s human heartedness. This opened the way for much more than guns, but advances in all the sciences, and even the creation of the market system. Then, people who didn’t follow that philosophy, only the tribal clique, picked up those advances in warfare, navigation and economics and subjugated the world.

Philosophy is like vision. Without it a being can survive by staying close to it’s home. Since a blind animal cannot detect danger as efficiently as a seeing one, it must be more wary. Blind animals also have a limited ability to perceive the world in context. The story of the three blind men, is helpful here, all touching an elephant then describing what an elephant is. Each correct in his own way but incorrect in a macro sense because they could not see the elephant. Exactly the same way people who’s philosophy has not opened their eyes yet cannot see the world in context, cannot understand the meaning of what is going on around them and cannot navigate anywhere near as efficiently. Philosophy is the same way but in a level of conscience sense. The higher the level of philosophy the better we can see… so to speak. Note, I said the higher the level, not the newness of the philosophy. There have been as many steps back as there have been steps forward. It’s just once they are understood the steps backward are rejected while the steps forward are incorporated.

People with a stone age philosophy will never create iron let alone a warp drive. Not because they are too stupid but because their philosophy is too limiting. Before one can create iron, one must be open to the idea of iron. If the idea is rejected out of hand, for whatever reason, the corporeality that comes of the idea cannot come into being. The thing simply cannot be made. If they are given iron, or trade for it, they see it, understand it’s utility and so their minds are expanded to include the idea of iron, but that still doesn’t mean they could have created it. The same applies to the Roman times, the Dark Ages, and even today’s post modernist philosophy, all are blind in one way or another, most if not all in many ways. As a result our science is limited by our vision. This is by no means a bad thing. A caveman with a machine gun is dangerous because he is unpredictable with it. Your brother with a machine gun is not dangerous because he is predictable. The first will use it in fits of anger having not the philosophy to control himself, the second only as a toy for target practice, unless he or his loved ones are threatened. The limiting factor of philosophy is a good thing.

The problem occurs, when people who lack the civilizing influence needed for a technology… get their hands on it. Take nuclear energy for example. Does anyone in their right mind really believe that sooner or later there will not be a horrific nuclear meltdown in North Korea, India, Pakistan or Iran? Even the fastidious Japanese, riddled with obsessive compulsive disorder, had a catastrophic meltdown. Yes, it took a nearly magnitude 10 earthquake and towering tsunami, but the consequences linger to this day and will remain for a very long time. If our philosophy as a human race had advanced sufficiently to be fooling with nuclear energy, we would be building thorium reactors rather than Uranium reactors. That we build uranium reactors, despite their inherent danger, for the plutonium that is handy for building nuclear bombs, while thorium reactors are far safer but do not produce the components for nuclear weapons, shows our present lack of human heartedness, (philosophy).

Since philosophy is both a limiting and forwarding factor in human scientific understanding, it makes sense to try to advance it, as much as possible. The more human hearted the philosophy the greater the level of scientific achievement that is possible. Those philosophy’s that have been dead ends, those that lead to the subjugation of individuals, must be abandoned… while those that have produced the greatest advances on humanity should be embraced. Pragmatically then, no matter if we as a human race embrace Christianity, we must embrace the teachings of Jesus as the philosophical advance they are. We should subscribe to the philosophy of capitalism as it was during the 1920s to reanimate the economy. We need to return to the nuclear family as the answer to the scourges of abortion, drugs, crime and hopelessness. We, as a people, must look at what philosophies has worked in the past and embrace only those, abandoning others that have failed us, only in that way can we be ready to advance to the next level of technological and scientific advancement.

Sincerely,

John Pepin

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