Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Infrastructure and Reality

Everyone thinks that they know what is reality; but their ideas on the subject vary widely.

Businessmen and engineers think that the economic infrastructure is reality, and that nothing else is.

Scientists think that the physical universe is reality, and that nothing else is.

Seriously religious people think that God is reality, and that nothing else is.

They are all right to affirm the reality of the world that they inhabit. They are wrong to claim that it is the only thing that is real.

The economic infrastructure is real enough; but it is wrong to claim that it is reality. It requires for its existence the Sun, the Earth and the people to work within it. When such are forgotten or denied, the results are disastrous. People blindly plunder the planet without sight for the future. People trap other people into all sorts of bad situations. People destroy for temporary gain the priceless natural treasures that they cannot conceivably recreate.

The physical universe is real enough; but it is also wrong to claim that it is the only thing that is real. There are all sorts of real things that these people do not compute. Whenever anything spiritual happens, these people claim that the people experiencing them have lost their minds. In fact the world is full of all sorts of accounts of all sorts of spiritual activity. These people claim that they are the only sane and intelligent people on the planet; and that is a ridiculous stance to have.

With religion, we see in many cases real powers but a bogus cosmology. The Earth is not 6,000 years old, nor does the sun revolve around the Earth. I believe that God is completely real; but I refuse toward that effect to adopt a bogus cosmology.

What we see in all of those cases is people seeing different aspects of the same thing. They are right to affirm what they are working with; they are wrong to deny the rest.

Things should be known by their proper name. The economic infrastructure should be known as economic infrastructure – which it is – as opposed to as reality, which it isn't. It is rightful to advance economic interest, not rightful to destroy what one cannot recreate. The mindset that it encourages should likewise be known as the mindset of the infrastructure rather than as reality. It is not reality; it is a mindset.

By all means advance economic well-being. But do so in a way that leaves the world richer rather than poorer for yourself having been in it. Encourage innovation and ingenuity and disincentivize blindness and destruction. Make sure that your economic reality impinges well rather than wrongfully on the rest of reality. And then make the most of reality both for people and for Earth.


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