Some Evidence For Faith
Article ID: 12618
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 3,525
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Author: Talitha Dragonfly
Posted: November 23rd. 2008
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Our planet is amazing. It contains absolutely everything that we need to survive. We have the gifts of food, water, air, medicine, and shelter. And all of these things receive everything that they need from the planet. It is a beautiful cycle that continues to thrive, even despite the terrible things we've done to spoil this delicately choreographed dance of live.
All of life has simultaneously evolved to fit into the larger pattern. Whatever one species does ultimately affects all of the others, whether plant or mineral or animal. Nothing is superfluous; nothing goes unnoticed; nothing goes to waste. Everything that life does has a purpose, right down to the optimum temperature requirements of the tiniest bacteria or the mating rituals of the lowly mosquito.
So where does spirituality fit in? Have we, as humans, managed to climb above our biological responses? Have we invented something unnatural and false? Or do we have our religious beliefs for a reason?
Our bodies are programmed with a wide variety of responses that help to ensure the survival of our species. We experience pain to keep us from doing things that will harm our bodies. If it didn't hurt when we touched a boiling pot of water, for instance, we would burn ourselves. It didn't hurt when we walked through thorny vines, we would keep going and open ourselves up to infection. We also feel pain when parts of us do get infected. This is a way of alerting us to where the problem is, and it forces us to do something about it.
We feel hunger so that we will take in nutrition. We even get cravings for certain food items when we start to become depleted of what we need, or when we need herbal medicine. We get thirsty when we begin to become dehydrated.
Many substances taste or smell horrible so that we don't put them into our mouths and poison ourselves, or so that we don't go near them and become contaminated. If spoiled meat didn't have a funny odor or a rancid taste, we would eat it and allow all sorts of bacteria to enter our bodies. If the rotting corpse of someone we had cared for didn't have a putrid stench, we might allow the deceased to stay with us and expose ourselves to disease.
We shiver when we get too cold. We start to get sluggish and slow down when we get too hot. Our bodies need a certain temperature range in order for it to function properly and to be healthy. Without our desire to pile on the scarves and mittens in the winter, or to crank up the air-conditioning in the summer, we would be exposing ourselves to harmful temperature extremes.
We also feel pleasure when we are doing things that are good for us from the standpoint of evolution. Fat and carbohydrates taste good, and this taste sensation encouraged our ancestors to consume them whenever they were found to pile on the fat for when food sources became scarce.
The first person to put the juice from an aloe plant on burned skin must have experienced an "Ahhhhhh.........mmmmm..........." effect, and remembered this in the future. The warmth felt by sitting next to a fire on a cold night was a cozy delight that helped to nurture our species. A woman's swollen, sore, milk-laden breasts are relieved by the suckling of her infant.
The best measure for the continuance of a species that nature has designed is reproduction. If having sex didn't feel so good, would we even bother to do even a tiny percentage of the things we do in the name of playing the mating game? Would we keep a reliably available mate around despite the difficulties? Would we have sex again and again even though we know the end result might be another child to raise?
Happiness and sadness are also experiences we have to help us survive. Things that make us miserable.....abuse, neglect, hardships, loneliness.....are things we tend to avoid. Things that make us happy.....playing games, cooperation, friendship, laughter, celebration.....are things that we tend to repeat.
Love, also, is a powerfully motivating factor. Without experiencing the close bond of love with our children, would we ever allow these greedy, demanding, labor-intensive, crying creatures that consume so many of our precious resources to stay around? Without love, would we help someone who was injured despite the fact that they might slow us down? Even love has been biologically hard-wired into us to help us survive.
Nature really does not care a single bit about the individual being. Nature doesn't care if you like your job or not, or if you don't like to wake up early in the morning, or if you're miserable with a runny nose when you get a cold. What seems to count the most is the survival of the species as a whole.
Nature has designed your entire body and mind to help the species of human beings continue and thrive, and to do so within the confines of our planet. Nothing more. Nothing less. This story is the same with every lineage of creatures that shares our world with us. This is what any biologist, geologist, botanist, physicist, or cosmologist will tell you.
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