Monday, November 10, 2008

Truth and facts concerning religion

fontein-met-landschap


Scientific theories still in the process of empirical search towards validation, resemble religious beliefs: The scientist and his followers put their faith in the theory. (Hopefully nobody get mad with me now ;)) They think the theory is true, even without proof, and hope to find evidence soon. The first aspect of religious fact finding is documentation of revelations. This may be compared to documentation of historical and political events, to journalism. Unique events in peoples’ lives are recorded by other people. There is no repetition or system, and the human perception always plays some part in documentation of historic events. It is not possible to do tests on historic data, because of their unique occurrence. We cannot afterwards ‘falsify’ unique historic events. This makes history a matter of trust. Yet, historic writings have been preserved since the Antiquity. The ancient cultures of Egypt, Persia, China, India wrote down the lives of their kings and religious leaders, sometimes on stone and sometimes on perch.
Human perception, observation by the human mind, is under the strong influence of the person’s personality, and aspects like age, culture, health, gender, and economic and political situation of the individual. Honesty, intellectual capabilities, and emotional temperament form a person’s personality and the person's ability to retain facts and events. Facts that are finally written down, depend on these aspects, but also on the assignment--the reason for writing them down. Is the person writing a personal journal, or is he writing on behalf of an employer? This makes some events at that moment not ‘interesting’ enough to be written down, even though history may regret this later.