Introduction to a work which turned out differently

I initially intended to be a 4-parts essay written for the site, "open (sic) contest for the ultimate truth on life and death".
Finally, I wrote many of the diverse ideas in a not-so-structured way, dispersed into several pages.

Initially considered abstract. The aim of this work is to provide a detailed analysis of the divide between science and religion that is assumed by many people on both sides, where religions either scorn science and claim to bring the sense of life beyond scientific means; or unilaterally claim compatibility and hope to unify with it, or distort and hijack it for their own promotion; while others claim that science is the one truth against religious views. So if there is only one reality, one truth, what is it ? A rational analysis of life including some paradoxes, will be presented, including:

Introduction: what is your question ?

Hello all. I love exploring the worlds of mathematics, physics, and some more challenging and crucial issues where the search for truth can be similarly proceeded through careful analyzing, building theories and synthetizing.

And you, what do you like ? "Truth contest". Wonderful ! Do you like truths ? Here you are: 2+2=4. Do you like it ?

Of course, there are much more interesting truths than this. For example I could tell you about the universe of mathematics, which is quite wonderful indeed. We can find there endless infinities of infinities, that can as well be modelized by the same infinity viewed as forming different structures. There, it has been proven that any universal truth (in some sense) is provable. Still an open range of questions with a seemingly absolute meaning are in fact undecidable (they cannot be proven nor refuted). Some claims about infinities can be proven undecidable by buiding universes where they are true, and others one where they are false. But many of such undecidabilities are themselves unprovable, so that an unprovable claim can have a fakely finite proof in another universe. Do you like this ?

Still not ? So, what else do you wish to know ? Do you like to know about the Big Bang ? how can the universe expand, slow down and accelerate without having any known center to go from ? How can a black hole capture light if it cannot emit anything and the light keeps going upwards from it at the same constant speed (c) ? How can a particle be at many positions altogether, and how can it be the same thing as a wave ? How the stars form, shine and explode ?

Still not happy ? What else do you want to know then ? "...the truth about life and death..." ?

Do you want to know about life on Earth ? How was it possible for the oceans to form, and for life to develop there for billions of years before finally conquering the continents ? Do you want to know how humans appeared and conquered the world ? How did they form nations and made wars together until finally building a relative peace, prosperity and economic growth, finally endangering their own planet ? Do you want to know how could they finally discover all these things about the universe ? Still not your question ?

OK, I understand you very well. You don't just have questions, you are facing troubles, the same troubles that so many other people on this planet faced. First, that you are a concious being, and that you can't describe the nature of this conciousness which you are, in the same ways as you can study anything else. Second, you wonder how the universe and/or the world in which we live can be globally described and understood, and is there any sort of reason why it is this way rather than anyway else, and what the f**k dropped you on this planet. Third, what will happen to you after death, and is there any way for you to prepare to it. Forth, is there any or several purpose(s) or missions of your life, either about how to be happy or for anything else such as a divine will to follow, and/or any particularly important truth(s) that you need to know for succeeding it.
These concerns are legitimate. And the problem is, despite all its wonderful progresses in discovering the truth, science did not seem to have any available answers to these troubles. Why ? But we will see that this accusation is not right: important rational answers can be given already and will be given here. Only the circumstances and proper efforts were missing to produce and/or spread such answers previously.

As time went and commonly heard answers remained unsatisfactory, you could panick and, like millions before you, shout your need for a "Utimate Truth", as if such a phrasing of a request could make you deserve (and/or could be of any help for) getting better answers.
Until now, it looked like the only voices offering answers were those of religions and spiritualities, more or less unchanged since millenia, quite older than science itself, But, is this old age of spiritualities a sign of reliability or of sterility, while science makes much faster progress ?
But unlike science, spiritual voices often contradict each other and their reliability is unclear, so that you are left with the trouble to tell the right from the wrong in their teachings.

I was also in this situation. For years I was led to follow spiritual answers, but my scientific mind was developing and working in the background, examining what was happening. Thanks to this, when my faith in spiritual teachings collapsed due to insisting contrary evidence, I was not completely lost: despite all the troubles, I could manage to rebuild a consistent and reliable understanding of all those matters.

This includes the understanding of what is wrong with these spiritual teachings, and why; why do so many people still believe in them, and what more essential truths did they fail to discover on the very issues they claim to answer. How their attractiveness and appearance of wonderful coherence and reliability, that preserved them through the ages, is hiding quite a miserable quality of truth as compared to the now common standards of scientific understanding (which I finally managed to reach on these issues), once examined more closely. What are precisely the differences between science and spirituality, not just the easy and superficial ones that spiritualities usually raise to put themselves forward, but also some quite more subtle ones that appear from a scientific viewpoint, the scientific replies to religions, usually ignored by "spiritual people", and showing how science can indeed go far beyond spirituality.

These are so many issues. I will try to explain the main ones, with a special focus on 2 goals. First, to dismiss a number of frequent wrong beliefs. Second, to explain important and still not well-known issues about life, how to give life better chances to be worth living, and ensure that global progress will keep going.

Note about references and quotations

A number of quotations and links are used to illustrate and strengthen some points in this series of texts. These are but what I had the chance to find in a little web research, that I did not take much time for. If you know more good references to illustrate the points, you can please send them to me, that I might include. But:

Initially intended plan (not the more disordered structure it turned out to be)
I : The Copernician revolution vs the spiritual ego
II. Explaining reason and science
III. Explaining metaphysics
Religion (unfinished)
Foreseeing and managing the future (incomplete - see the initially intended list of ideas at the end of the text on religion)

Back to the Antispirituality site