I woke this morning thinking "nah, who am I kidding, I love being a belief diagnostician". Working on my warm bedside manner to make like the good Belief Doctor will have to wait another day. Speaking of being the diagnostician, there is a subject that catches my attention from time to time ... and it is the debate between religious people and atheists. As far as I'm concerned the heavy lifting has been done in sorting out the issues. I should know, I did the lifting.
Anyway, there's lots to be said that can undo, mend or heal the silliness. From simple logical perspectives, there's a straight forward approach that quietens the various sides down somewhat. But for the serious discussions, that gets into subjective, felt stuff which is better left for another day - or for a meditation workshop whereby or whereat people are invited to relax, quieten their minds, and allow subtle feelings and experiences to come into their awareness.
So let's kibosh a few misconceptions by religious folk ... that God is perfect, or all-knowing, or some such. I don't usually engage in forums, but I recently made an exception.
The following is from a philosophy forum on the implications of quantum mechanics, but this verbatim excerpt is related to the subject of perfection:
No perfection in the part, means no perfection in the whole.
Anything else requires weird, nonsensical disconnects between the part and the whole of which it is part.
In other words, taking all entities, particles, people, aliens (green or otherwise) within existence as being parts within an underlying whole (or oneness) of existence requires that no other parts can be perfect.
As within the part, so the whole.
Again, what part are you having trouble with.
Hm, maybe approach it from another angle. Where is the divide between your hand and your body? (rhetorical question).
Where is the divide between an individual and the community (another rhetorical).
Whenever is there going to be a 'divide' between any part and its greater whole (of which it is part)?
All theories of perfection and the like require fundamental disconnects and exceptions --- and exceptions are limited perceptions within a deeper inclusiveness (of the whole).
IN everyday language to suggest that exceptions and disconnects have fundamental meaning would be to suggest that you can have a community, excepting all the people in it.
Or a body without any organs, parts, cells, limbs etc.
Now, religious folk (as I understand) think of God as some separate entity off somewhere else looking down on us. But that requires some sort of weird disconnect between here (us) and up or "over there" (them, or Him) and is the cause of so much upset in the world today. Us versus them. In deeper terms how can we be anything other than from common ground or stuff or spirt or whatever. As I said, anything else involves weird, nonsensical disconnects. As we learn, so too God. Otherwise He'd get very bored, having known it all before hand.
There's a great introduction to how we've evolved by Jeremy Rifkin
It's very good and I highly recommend it. I've also written on this subject of how, as a race, we're like children, looking up to our spiritual parents (Father) like any child sees its parents, as perfect and all-knowing.
I've also added my view, that in being somewhere around late adolescence, as a global culture we're stuck in objective differences, competition, materialism, technology and an us-verus-them approach to international situations. More is explained over at the Belief Institute website, particularly the Evolution of the Human Psyche article.
Well, achievement in the face of adversity is what life is about ... it's what I call productive-creativity. It means solving problems, and if we're stuck in the ideal of perfection (which means "there's only one answer, and since I have it, you're wrong" style of thinking common to religious faiths), we remain closed to possibilities.
In other words, the ideal of perfection works dead against creativity, discovery, fun, openness, and freedom. If you don't agree just check out those who are fundamentalists (in any field, including science -- one that comes to mind is Richard Dawkins, who in my opinion is a fundamentalist of Darwinian belief, and not much fun as a result :).
I've found creative people to be way more open, fun, inventive and adventurous - the exact opposite of fundamentalists and perfectionists (I should know I've been one, much to my chagrin, and to the lament and boredom of others).