Reexamining the Paradigm Shift of Religion and Science

The only way we can possibly all come together is by changing our current concepts of how we see the world. The time has come to break paradigms , and to redefine our current definitions of things are.  We need to have a serious paradigm shift in order for anything to get done.

What the heck is a paradigm anyway?  It describes distinct concepts or thought patterns in any scientific discipline or other epistemological context. ( According to wikipedia ). What it basically means is that we have certain concepts that we all have that we believe to be truths, and we stick to it until something comes along to challenge that paradigm and we adopt new ones. What makes it dangerous is how defines how we see the world, and our behavior as well. While we are not conscious of it, it is how we define a known reality. Paradigms are a bit like an internet meme, it spreads like wildfire without really having a clear idea how it started. In this day and age, we just naturally take things on as truth without knowing necessarily WHY  this is the case.

But paradigms does not have to contain truth, they are merely a way or a tool for us to make sense of the world. And our current paradigms are seriously messing with our heads. Our concept of religion, spirituality, men and women, education , relationships,etc are all following dated paradigms which I believe no longer work.  In the next couple of posts I am going to explain this a bit further ( or more like explain what I have learned from other people haha)

There is a reason why we live our lives in constant contradiction and fragmentation.  Our values at work, in how we treat others, in the world around us is consistently clashing, and this drives us to be a little like this :

 

How we choose a paradigm is sometimes arbitrary

A theory is tested, people adopt it and then consider it to be truth. Usually, though, it has more to do with the fact that it is what the majority believes than anything logical. In the advent of pseudo science this becomes even more evident. We follow a paradigm merely on the assumption that ” medical experts say so” . We believe science to be infallible and the truth. Actually, science has a lot to do with faith and has elements in common with religion.
Within our society, we think of certain concepts with a certain defnition, and a lot of times it is based on a historical assumption that this is how we should see things. However, perception is a tricky thing and at times how we define things might differ from one person to the next even if the ” concept” is clear to us.
Let’s take a very controversial topic : religion.

For Atheists : Religion is something that has caused great harm to our society, and has given way for men to force their views on others, wars, adopting falsehood and superstition, among other things.

If you consider their point of view, it’s not exactly wrong. In the name of religion , people have caused great harm and corruption. But was it really religion or the men behind it? I highly doubt that the Manifestations of God advocated superstition over investigating the truth, war and hate over love and service. All of them lead Their lives dedicated to others.

Religion, like science , is not static, but changes with action and reflection evolving constantly over time. The basis of it will remain the same, just as there are scientific principles which do not change however become sophisticated over time through investigation as does religion.

And what is spirituality? Spirituality adheres to a core belief that we all have virtues inside us. They are not material, we cannot bottle them but they are vital for our growth as human beings . When we increase our capacity to love others, others benefit and grow with this. When we increase our intellectual abilities with a desire to care for others, it has positive instead of detrimental effects in us.

When we think that we have a spiritual side, we will exploit those basic core values. Laughter, happiness, strength of love , generosity are all spiritual in nature. But this is not a spirituality that sits down and meditates all day without taking action. It is through going to serve others in some way that we increase our spiritual nature. It is by giving up our self to the benefit of others. By tossing aside the competitive nature so plagued by our current society we can progress spiritually. By deepening on what

I give this example but there are thousands more… we need to believe that our current notion of certain core concepts in our lives need to be redefined. There are basic parts of our lives that follow a broken model. Our concept of what family means, what religion is about, our concept of spirituality and the meaning of our lives. We blindly follow a set of archaic rules which no longer have any reason for being so. We need to start questioning why we do the things we do. We are living our lives surrounded by dichotomies , and it causes us to have split personalities. We need to have some balance in our lives. What’s true is that we need to grow as a society, and try to do it together by sharing our common beliefs and virtues.

The Nature of Religion

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Understanding Our Concept of Evil

Why is it is so hard for us to believe that people are good in nature? Why is it our first impulse to try to differentiate ourselves from others ? Why do we try to put lines on the sand between good and bad black and white, right and wrong?

In western society, we believe essentially that human beings are messed up creatures indeed. If you went by the news, you would think that we are extremely violent , privy to hate , greedy and selfish.

We believe unconsciously that our true nature lies in this. Maybe not consciously, but if you look around us you see a huge emphasis on the essence of human nature is to be selfish and corrupt . We are taught to distrust our common neighbor, and to get ahead at all costs over others. We are forced to a set of standards that everyone must act upon.

It is said that one in five people are psychopaths… according to the psychopath test. But I am not surprised by this, considering that society perpetuates and encourages psychopathic behavior. It is in essence a consequence of focusing solely on just our selves. Even the current concept of spirituality is based purely on our own need to find ourselves over all other things.

In the book eat pray love, the main character spends an awful amount of time on her own quest for satisfaction. Ultimately this is the main problem. We make our own rules of good and evil based purely on our own selfish needs. Little to no time is placed on thinking about how our own needs effect others. The motto is ” Look after yourself first”.

We then go to the other extreme of religious fanaticism where total abnegation of self over others occurs. Where we self mutilate or punish ourselves and our obsessed with sin as opposed to trying to make the world a better place. It is our very obsession over darkness, over what is bad in us which paralyzes our ability to see the goodness.
If we focus on imperfections, how are we to see all our glorioius qualities and virtues? If we see the world as dark this only paralyzes us into significant change and action.

What if evil is simply the absence of life? What if Eve is a symbol of the spirit and we are not burdened by sin and darkness but by an ability to investigate and grow throughout life? What if everything in this world had a purpose, but by doing certain actions ( like say, murder) we are only opening ourselves to stifle growth and commitment to helping others grow?

I have found so many times that every time I feel the most defeated is when i am focusing too much on myself. When I have too much time on my hands to think. The moment I get up and do something for other people, the more I realize how much worth I have and how worthwhile others are.

The girls in my youth group were cutting down weeds in their school garden. They stretched all the way up and had been their for years. They happily were cutting and hacking things down , filled with joy to do this task. They knew it would take a long time, that the work was hard and it would take even longer to see true growth. But there was a degree of satisfaction in hacking down all those weeds which covered up the potential for this garden. They did it with an expertise that I never had, being more of a spoiled city girl. They taught me the power of truly being happy in serving others. And you can see the change not only in the garden but also in themselves and in their relationships with their peers.

The more we search for ourselves, the less likely we are to find ourselves; and the more we search for God, and to serve our fellow-men, the more profoundly will we become acquainted with ourselves, and the more inwardly assured. This is one of the great spiritual laws of life.
– Shoghi Effendi