No Miracles Found Here

No Miracles Found Here. Nope. If it’s miracles you’re looking for, there’s nothing to see here folks. Move right along. 

That’s weird way to open a Biblical libertarian web site. The reason you won’t find any miracles here is because miracles are arrogant. Let me explain what I mean. 

In the Beginning (of science)

“Falsification and verification are not possible if there is no order in the universe. In other words, order in the universe is not a discovery but an assumption – actually a religious belief – that must come before science can even begin. Scientists assume that the world can be understood and taken as intelligible – otherwise there is no reason to pursue science. (In the Beginning, Gerard Verschuuren, pg. 59)

“Where do assumptions of order and intelligibility come from, if they are not intuitive? Certainly not from science. In fact, they come [in the West, “came”] from the Judeo-Christian belief in a Creator God. At the very core of the Judeo-Christian view is the view that the universe is the creation of a Divine Mind – a rational intellect that is capable of being rationally interrogated by all human beings, including scientists.” (In the Beginning, Gerard Verschuuren, pg. 60)

Back to Miracles or Not

Let’s imagine that there is a God, and that He is omniscient, He knows everything. Let’s take, just for handy example, the feat of raising a man from the dead. To Him, that’s no miracle, because there are no miracles. He knows how everything works.

Now let’s confront our own situations in spacetime as we’re currently restricted to understanding it. 

For most immediate starters, we can’t explain – I mean have really no clue as to our very own consciousness, the very thing with and by which we (think we) perceive anything else – including our own existences within spacetime. Our own primary tool for recognition of our own beings. And we have not a clue how that state of awareness arises from the very same basic matter and chemical elements as rocks, trees, and car tires. We skipped over the distinction of life itself, even unicelled plant life, arising from those same chemical elements. Why do we seem to have it and they seem not to? Or do they have consciousness and we’re only able to recognize it in us but not in them? We have no clue. We barely want to recognize it or admit that other animals might have it as any viable capacity. If we’re that silly, who knows what a rock knows. No, I don’t believe or seriously suspect that a rock might have conscious agency, but the point here is we don’t KNOW – that they don’t – because we can’t explain the recognized (or mis-recognized) difference between us and them – the difference in state of being we perceive between us and them; our own believed (or mis-believed) consciousness. 

We think therefore we are. But what the best and brightest of us are thinking is giving them pause to wonder whether we might be or not. If that’s not a core cluelessness, I’m not sure what would be. 

Let’s confront a few other cluelessnesses we’re so far stuck with. 

The very existence of matter itself – the very elements of which all “stuff” or everything we perceive (or misperceive) as stuff – from stars to us – to snails, alligators, and galaxies. We’ve always tended to “believe in” matter. But modern science is finding it more and more suspect all the time. But we still don’t “know.” In fact, the some of the brightest minds in science are beginning to doubt matter, or if not quite doubt, at least wonder. At our level of understanding subatomic particles, the world gets very strange. For one thing some particles seem to go away and come back, if it’s even the same ones coming back. We don’t know where they go away to or where they return from. It is possible that the particles don’t go anywhere or return. It’s possible they remain in the same space and merely disappear and reappear right before our instruments. But that’s not much less strange than going somewhere and returning. In either case, I’m not sure we’re yet sure that it is even the same particles reappearing. We might have some kind of particle exchange occurring between atoms. The overall point is: “We don’t know.” Whatever it is, that’s occurring in all matter around us and in the matter that is us, all the time. Very strange, if you ask me. Science has discovered the problem, but not yet so much on the answers. Well that seems another chink in our armor of understanding. 

There is a (at least one) philosophical leap to be made in getting from consciousness, thought, or mind to matter. Some bright minds of our times are suggesting to eliminate this leap by going with the hypothesis that all perception and of perception is information only, that there is no matter. This is more direct and does reduce or even eliminate philosophical leap(s) from thought to matter, but it also only backs up the questions from the nature of matter and its origins and workings to the nature of information and its origins and workings.

We’re not sure how we perceive stuff, (by way of our consciousness, we think) and we’re less and less certain stuff is even here to be perceived – including the stuff that we perceive to be us here doing the perceiving. So, within the perceptions of our own consciousnesses and the stuff we use for perceiving (our brains – so far as we guess) we’re basically flying blind from the get-go. 

And on our happy blind fights – or within those blind flights, here are a few other not small aspects we’re missing. (Note that we’re already missing the entire picture, if there is one, or at least this – if there is an entire picture – we have no idea what it is or on what it might be based.) 

Regarding our consciousness, we also remain absolutely clueless as to whether there is any such thing as motivation, and if there is such a thing, is there more than one, and if so, how does it or they interact with perceived or misperceived consciousness, information or matter? Many people thought to be wise have insisted that motivation is everything. If motivation is even very much of anything, let alone everything, it’s another seemingly important clue about which we remain vastly clueless. 

Definitions of Miracles 

Historically and currently, definitions of miracles typically involve the suspension of or outside intervention in the physically regulating laws of nature.

The very definition of miracles presumed stumped omniscience. How does that work? First, we’d need the omniscience to be stumped. And we plainly (seemingly plainly enough) don’t have it. Miracles, as presently defined and understood, lay claim to stymied omniscience. 

Our definitions of miracles presumes that we have full knowledge of all the laws of nature and beyond – whatever might be beyond – that we have discovered all the laws of nature and beyond, and that we have full understanding of all the interactions between those laws of nature and beyond – and that even with all that omniscient understanding, things have dared to happen that are beyond our best comprehension. Miracles presume stumped omniscience. 

But we’re not quite omniscient. Or as best we can tell – if we’re here at all we don’t seem to be omniscient. 

On the other hand, to disbelieve in miracles – is essentially this: to deny the possibility that anything ever happened (or happens) unless we understand it. Our perceived or misperceived understanding is presumed to define the limits of reality. If we can’t explain it or don’t understand it, it just couldn’t have taken place, and can’t take place. To keep it simple for ourselves, if we don’t understand, can’t explain, it didn’t, couldn’t, doesn’t happen. In other words, happy denial. One way to live. The way prevailing science currently lives. Ironic, isn’t it?

Well then, perhaps goodbye existence, our own, and all else in spacetime and whatever might ever have been beyond. Oblivion. We just can’t guess.

And Mysteries

On yet another hand, if I believe in mysteries, there’s at least a reasonable possibility that I might be here. If I insist on miracles, my existence seems a little less certain. I’m betting that in some remoter, faint sense – I’m here. I am. Or at least – I perceive or misperceive that I’m making that bet. Mysteries. Now mysteries on the other hand, are just things we don’t understand. And I have to believe in mysteries to even to begin suspecting I might be here to think. Lacking omniscience, it seems I am condemned to believe in mysteries. And so, I do. But no miracles found here.

This early talk of miracles has been for this: to suggest, here at the beginning of our quest for Biblical libertarian philosophy, that a little humility might be top of the agenda.

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