Salvation Is Here
The words “saviour” and “salvation” have always puzzled me slightly, not what they mean of course, but the way we use them, almost always in a religious context. It does not have to be this way; a soccer player scoring a winning goal, a batsman scoring the winning run, a mother who snatches her child from the path of an oncoming vehicle; these persons could rightly be described as saviours, their deeds saved the team from defeat or the child from serious injury, possibly death. We describe such people, as “match-winners” or “heroes” but never as “saviours”, although that is what they are!
There is a breed of religious persons who seek and expect salvation, they rejoice perhaps, in being “born again” – personally, I’ve always felt I was born OK the first time – because they feel it improves their salvational chances. I’m puzzled because I don’t understand what they need to be saved from! Is it wild animals perhaps? The deeds of people following the rules of a different deity? Criminals? What?
Personally, I can think of many different dangerous things that I may need salvation from, but I don’t spend much time considering them because they are only possibilities. Death of course, is a certainty that no one can be saved from and so merits no consideration, when it happens it’s the end of me and of the world as far as I’m concerned.
When I consider the future of my species however, it’s a different matter. It is beyond doubt that one day all life on this planet will be extinguished, either by the death of our sun – arguably the real God who lives in the sky – or by some other cosmic catastrophe that could happen at any moment. To my mind we need to think about this certainty now, falling to our knees praying to some imaginary being for personal salvation is not just selfish; it’s downright counter-productive to humanity in general.
Unfortunately, we are a selfish species, we live in a ‘Fuck You I’m All Right Jack’ world, a faulty philosophy that may well hasten our path to extinction. People with this attitude are shortsighted and fail to realise that very few of us can live in this modern world without the support and assistance of others. In our distant past the FYIARJ attitude was probably the right one, basic survival was the name of the game and killing weaker competitors, the individual’s means of staying alive. This is Mother Nature’s way, she has no concept of a crime, and never punished anyone for staying alive by whatever means possible.
But we have moved on, thankfully, most would say and I agree, although the primitive FYIARJ lives on in most of us, it’s the cause of much strife and prevents us from doing that which obviously needs to be done if we are to have even a chance of a long-term future.
I suppose I could stop this post here, readers getting this far will probably guess what follows.
It’s pretty simple, we need to unite and pool the only resource we have that may give us that chance. The resource is knowledge, the knowledge we obtained by using the best tool we ever developed: science.
We need to stop lifting our eyes to the heavens for salvation, up there our nemesis lurks; our salvation is here on Earth, embodied in the members of our species who work to increase our knowledge. The problem is that not many of us recognise the saviours, indeed, many of those who pray for heavenly salvation actively seek to thwart the efforts of the only saviours they’re ever going to have, this strikes me as blind stupidity of the highest order.
So, look for the saviours, when one is found help him/her so that they are not financially dependant upon ignorant, short-sighted politicians with feeble FYIARJ-overloaded brains who want them to make weaponry that could result in our premature demise.
Science has always been a global enterprise, its very nature compels its practitioners to share results and have them verified by colleagues, governments trying to stop this international cooperation, have largely failed.
Therein lies our hope and possible salvation.