Friday, April 28, 2006

Why are people afraid of saying "I don't know.."

Omegamom weighs in on being an 'Angry Agnostic' in response to an article by Rabbi Gellman who's trying to understand 'Angry Atheists'. A great passionate post.

Since the birth of my daughter I've found myself in the midst of these issues with my family (both close and extended) more and more often. At the risk of being simplistic, I find it difficult to understand how people can know exactly what they believe in without even a hint of skepticism or curiosity.

Just look at what we now understand about the sciences compared to even 10 years ago nevermind 100. If you told people 100 years ago that we would be able to modify the genetic makeup of organisms, or prevent or cure diseases, or wipeout an entire city with a single weapon, they'd never have believed it. The quest to discover things is vital to the progress of our civilization. Why do people think that this path of discovery is somehow detrimental to spirituality or morality or our future? It could be that in another 100 years we will discover the creator of everything, or we might discover that there isn't one. The thing that drives me is the quest to discover these things not some specific final result that I'm betting my life on.

As far as morality is concerned, I think that's a function of society. It's largely a self-righting ship. Sure it drifts this way and that, but it still slowly but surely moves onward. Did organized religion play a part in my morality? No, my parents did. It might have played a part in theirs of course. But I've met enough morally inept people both religious and non, to see no discernible pattern.

Why are people so afraid to say "I don't know." or perhaps "We don't know." when it comes to explaining their universe and all that comes with it? Can we not function perfectly well in the meantime? heh heh.. I don't know....