Saturday, December 22, 2007

Fwd: God and evolution

-----Original Message-----

Subj: God and evolution
Date: Sat Dec 22, 2007 10:15
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A friend gave me a book of that title. I will read it but first here is my take: religion is as much a product of evolution as the eye or the opposing thumb or the cockroaches susceptibility to peer pressure.

Religion is the expression of human love that like a giant basket carries many of our deepest, most ineluctable questions . . . . And some of our similarly ineluctable answers.

Religion flows from the conjunction of the human mind and human heartm reaching out to make sense of the world around us.

The problem comes when, as with many human enterprises, we capture those instincts -- like fighting over property or bartering or teaching the young -- in a large organized group, called a bureaucracy, which goes to work to create outcomes, which in the case of religion is to enshrine answers to those questions into a uniformly adhered to set of truths.

What is "true" for one religious bureaucracy is different from the "truth" of another. And in a shrinking world, those truths are held by people in mixed groups. Some become ecumenical and absorb other truths and grow, while others become defensive and inward turned and reject all others.

But the root of the religious impulse is the same: the human expression of a form of love.

Love itself as expressed in the human is the same love seen in all natural forms, a drive for replication. The watermelon has an incredible love of its seeds to create that huge body of fruit flesh to nourrish as compost, its little seeds.

It is the sme love as that of the grandmother who cares for her grandchild, freeing her daughter to reach out to forrage for better and more food.

So, religion is that branch of human love that seeks to create harmony among people and to ask and answer questions about the mysteries.

God is as much a creature of evolution as my cerebral cortex.