January 30, 2014
To Pope Francis
We need an economy that is founded on the idea that not only are we our sisters and brothers' keeper. They are ours. We must go beyond charity, to creating a moral economy in which we eliminate poverty through full employment. Jobs that are designed to meet the real needs of real people are our credo. Social service and community and not wealth, property, profit, power and narcissism is the foundation of real democracy, compassion and love. All people on this planet are one nation and each is a part of the earth. If this is the message I stand with him and by him.
January 31, 2014
Nature or God by Michael Joseph Francisconi
The Buddhism of the Pali scriptures does not worship or make reference to the divine. Taoism of Lao Tzu or ChuangTzu talks about nature not the divine. The Greek atomists like Democritus and Leucippus, Greek and Roman Epicurean philosophies of Epicurus and Lucretius were either atheists or they held the gods to be irrelevant.
Atheism is the belief that empirical evidence for the divine is lacking. It is lacking in the same way that there exist no compelling proof for Unicorns or Pegasus. In addition Ferengi, Cardassian, Klingon, Angosian, Bajoran, or Lela Dax who joined a Trill cannot be proven to exist other than science fiction characters. The point is atheism is not a profound faith in the non-existence of god or gods. But atheism simply states there is insufficient evidence to waist time worrying about the nature or existence of the divine. This does go beyond a lack of faith in God. Atheists state God is not necessary. At a certain level all atheists are agonistic in the same way that it is impossible to prove that a hot pastrami sandwich, double shot of espresso and a shot of Canadian whisky eternally rotates around Pluto without ever changing temperatures. It is so remote a chance that to considerate is absurd. At this point our discussion has slipped into intellectual masturbation.
Humanism claims people are capable of being ethical and decent and becoming richly fulfilled without belief in God. In fact belief in the divine makes this more difficult.
Pantheism adds to atheism a profound celebration of life and a reverence for the magnitude of the universe and a respectful exaltation and the veneration of the earth. Science is the way we gain understanding and respect for humanity, life, the earth and the universe. God as a term if it is used at all is an emotive expression not a description of reality.