Heard Sacks on BBC Sunday, talking sense as usual. Not really digested this yet. Contentious, was equating trust with religion – with which I have no problem – religion / trust is what binds “us” together. Only question is who is “us” and the nature of the “bondage”.
In essence I agree with Sacks point (again). Culture is losing the plot if it decides all it can trust are things scientific. Scientism as I’ve dubbed the problem. Oddly scary that formal humanist organisations share this lack of trust in humanity. (Must check Sacks use of the word “secular” here.)
The comment thread on the BBC story has some classics. Here just one example, much promoted.
[Trust of people] derives from how you are brought up as a child, and this has a lot to do with love, respect, acceptance and kindness, and little or nothing to do with religion.
[Huh, except that religion also derives from ... and has a lot to do with ... etc. The religious upbringing line is even brought up by atheist humanists as "child abuse" fer chrissakes.]
I prefer humanists to religious folk, convinced of their own righteousness.
[Talk about the righteous pointing fingers! Irony x hypocrisy squared.]
(Comment are closed – actually quite a good few balanced responses too – about not ignoring Sacks points simply because you do not agree with his religion.) But more generally – people confuse religion with (a) irrational belief and (b) the particular practices of particular religions. Whereas it is by definition what binds us together. It’s another clear management (or governance) example – the same cultural failing – that turns such values into objectives where so-called organised religions – like any “professional” organisation. They inadvertently attempt codify what they value in prescriptive do-this / do-that practices, and destroy their value in the process. Religion (trust) ceases to be. What religions are accused of is precisely what most important cultural institutions suffer from.
Today’s lesson (see earlier posts):
Any benefit of the doubt, in an objective evidential sense,
must fall with trusting the humanity of the human(s) involved.
It is that which binds us together.
The problem is a cultural one, one of cultural values. Not problems with religion or science except in so far as they are both immersed in cultural problems, the same as politics and economics are, including the politics and economics of the humanities ironically.