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-Human Extinction: A Philosophical Question or A Religious One?

by Dr. D ~ December 31st, 2018

Humans Global Warming Climate Change Animal Rights

Some radical philosophers have been kicking around the idea that human extinction could be a possible solution to ‘global warming’ and maybe the only solution. Along the same line of thinking, some animal rights radicals contend that the world and its ecosystems would be far better off if the human race was no longer around. These ideas and similar ones have been topics of discussion for some time now in college and university classes all across America.

Recently these ideas were elevated to the mainstream in an editorial in the NY Times by Todd May, a professor of philosophy at Clemson University:

Would Human Extinction Be a Tragedy?:
Our species possesses inherent value, but we are devastating the earth and causing unimaginable animal suffering”

Some quotes from the article:

There are stirrings of discussion these days in philosophical circles about the prospect of human extinction. This should not be surprising, given the increasingly threatening predations of climate change. …

Would human extinction be a tragedy? …

Yet what I am asking here is simply whether it would be a tragedy if the planet no longer contained human beings. And the answer I am going to give might seem puzzling at first. I want to suggest, at least tentatively, both that it would be a tragedy and that it might just be a good thing. …

Human beings are destroying large parts of the inhabitable earth and causing unimaginable suffering to many of the animals that inhabit it. …There is no reason to think that those practices are going to diminish any time soon. Quite the opposite. …

But this entire set of reflections is taking place from a human viewpoint. We cannot ask the questions we are asking here without situating them within the human practice of philosophy.

<Read the whole editorial>

Response: This editorial is both scary and refreshing.

Most of the discussion about climate change and global warming is done in the context of politics and social policy generated to contain the supposed damage that humans are perpetrating on the ecosystems we live in. General evidence from science and pseudoscience is submitted by both sides with little affect in changing anyone’s attitudes or actions.

Lately, I’ve read a number of articles suggesting the humans need to be forced to be limited and regulated in a number of different ways. Animal rights activists suggest that laws need to be passed to force folks to give up meat. Some ecologists suggest that governments need to force their citizens to limit the number of children that they have in order to contain or even decrease human population. Others are suggesting that we limit our use of technology or even roll it back to earlier levels. We even have a number of radical religious groups in Islam (like ISIS and Boko Haram) calling for the extinction of all who do not commit to Islam. So the call for a forced response  or some kind of decrease in humanity is nothing new. But the idea that the world would be a better place if there was a complete extinction of humanity takes the conversation to another level entirely.

I am an avid reader of Sci-Fi novels. One of the most popular themes in that genre is the extinction or near extinction of humanity. Sometimes through major ecological disasters, alien invasions, or by radical human action. Dystopian themes are particularly popular right now, most of which depict a regression to 19th century technology and the elimination of 90% or more of the population due to EMPs, major epidemics, and civil wars and conflicts mostly caused by governments gone totalitarian or initiated by radicals within.

In this case, the writer suggests that questions pertaining to the continuation of humanity, whether its elimination would be a solution or a tragedy, should be addressed in the realm of human philosophy. I would like to suggest that there is a better forum for this discussion- Christianity and the Bible with The Creator as the ultimate judge of humanity.                    *Top

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-Merry Christmas 2018

by Dr. D ~ December 24th, 2018

04567_Christmas_nativity_scene_at_the_Franciscan_church_in_Sanok_2010_thumb

                                                                                          (Image via Wikipedia)

Merry Christmas to you and yours and may God truly bless you this Christmas.

The Real Christmas Story

When our children were growing up it was a family tradition to read about the ‘real’  Christmas story in the Bible on Christmas Eve.

You’ve probably seen a dozen or so ‘Christmas stories’ on TV in the last couple of weeks but the real Christmas story is found in Matthew (Matt. 1:18-2:18) and in Luke (Luke 1:26-56, 2:1-40). However, Isaiah should never be ignored:

Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. (Isaiah 7:14)

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)

Matthew gives us the story largely from the perspective of Joseph, including the dreams that he had and his family genealogy. In this gospel the ‘Kingship’ of Jesus is the major topic. Starting with the Davidic Kingly genealogy through Joseph and the coming of the Magi (Wisemen) who are looking for the new king. Also King Herod’s reaction is in Matthew.

The events in Luke are given to us from Mary’s view. The angel Gabriel appears to Mary and announces the coming of the child. Mary’s genealogy is also given in Luke (Luke 3:23-38), she was also a descendant of David, but not in the ‘Kingly’ line. Chapter 2 begins with the Christmas story that everyone is familiar with:

1 In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And all went to be registered, each to his own town. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. 6 And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.

8 And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear. 10 And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy that will be for all the people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”

However, nothing explains the real reason for the season better than John 3:16-17:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.  -KJV

*Top

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-Happy Thanksgiving 2018

by Dr. D ~ November 22nd, 2018

300px-Thanksgiving-Brownscombe

("The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth": Wikipedia)


Happy Thanksgiving 2018 to you and yours. The following is our traditional Thanksgiving message:

Thanksgiving is an uniquely American celebration that began nearly four centuries ago with a deeply religious people, the Pilgrims, giving thanks to God for preserving them though a very hard year and bringing them their first bountiful harvest which they gratefully shared with their indigenous neighbors.

It was our first President George Washington who proclaimed that our first official national day of public thanksgiving should be dedicated by observing and:

“…by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God.

In recent years the ‘politically correct’/secular crowd has rewritten the history of the First Thanksgiving placing an emphasis upon the hand that the indigenous American Indians played in helping the original Pilgrim community to survive. In the process they have redirected the emphasis on thanks towards neighbors and friends and away from the providence of Almighty God.

While it is always good to be thankful for others who have enriched our own lives and certainly that has a good part to play in the celebration. Nevertheless the major emphasis of Thanksgiving should always be upon giving thanks to God along with our family and friends as it was on that very first occasion.

For my family and I, we will be praising and thanking the Lord God Almighty for the bounties and the providence that he has bestowed upon us this year in the name of his Son Jesus Christ. May Our Heavenly Father bless your family today and continue to bless all of us and this nation during this holiday season and in the year to come.           *Top

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–Happy Reformation Day!

by Dr. D ~ October 31st, 2018

Wittenberg Door

           (Wittenberg Door: Wikipedia)

Happy Halloween –Happy Reformation Day!

I know. October 31st is known for witches, goblins, pumpkins, and trick or treat.

It is amazing to me how in the last 20 years or so Halloween has gone from a one night ‘celebration’ to become an entire ‘holiday’ season of it’s own with parties and decorations that span nearly an entire month. Plus it has become an excuse for every TV station to flood the air with the worst horror movies of all time.  Not a genre that I am particularly fond of.

However, this is also the anniversary of a real earth shaking -game changing- historical event that altered the face of Europe and forever changed the Christian Church. 501 years ago on this day- October 31, 1517, Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses on the door of a church in Wittenberg, Germany starting The Reformation.

The enemy (Satan) likes to use this day for propagating his dark agenda but on this day 501 years ago a genuine move of God was initiated that still continues. The beginning of a revival right in the face of the enemy on his own day.

Let’s redeem this dark day and pray for God to continue to reform and revive his church.  Let’s also in remembrance of the original Reformation pray today for a new awakening to begin in America. May a new door of renewal and revival open in America that no man can shut.  In Jesus name, Amen           *Top

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-Ethics: Assisted Suicide for Children?

by Dr. D ~ October 22nd, 2018

PARENTAL CONSENT

A Toronto Children’s hospital is talking about offering physician-assisted suicide to children without parental consent. From the Faith Wire:

A group of medics from a Toronto children’s hospital have released a shocking paper which outlines its controversial position on child euthanasia. In the paper, published at the British Medical Journal, Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children revealed that in some cases, the young person’s parents will not be notified of the intention to end their own lives until after the death is confirmed.  …

It is a terrifying prospect – that a child could choose to engage in physician-assisted suicide without the involvement of their own parents. Obviously, this has caused grave concern among certain ethicists and pro-life researchers.  …

<Read the whole article>

Response: Society has deemed it necessary to have laws in place that define when people become adults in order to protect minors. The traditional reasoning is that children do not have the capacity to make adult decisions.

We don’t send children to war, though 18 is too young as it is. Laws are in place to regulate and protect children in the workplace. Children can’t buy alcohol and tobacco or sign contracts and go into debt or vote.  Also these days schools need parental approval to even dispense aspirins anymore not to mention regular medical care by doctors and dentists.

But now these Toronto medics believe that children should be able to end their own lives without any input from their parents? How can this be ethically justified in any way? The drumbeat of the cause of euthanasia has now gone way beyond anyone’s imagination of just a few years ago when we use to talk about ‘slippery slopes.’ These folks are willing to over-ride parental consent when it comes to the ultimate decision of life itself.

Children that can’t sign a contract or vote are nevertheless deemed to be capable of signing papers for their own death? How is this even logical and certainly it is not ethical. Just think for a minute. Who exactly is going to make the decision to even offer the children a way to end their own lives? Obviously an adult medical person is going to do it and implied permission and pressure will be part of the mix. But the parents will be excluded until after it is all over?

Hopefully ethical issues will be raised by the disclosure of these ideas and plans. If not, I would hope that the first parents who lose their child to the ‘decisions’ of these medical quacks will sue their pants off. In the mean time, I would counsel any parent to avoid taking their children to this hospital. 

Here’s a related article from Family Policy Alliance on this issue with mention of what is happening along these line in Europe:  “Should Doctors Help Children Die–Without Parents’ Knowledge?” Apparently a 9 and an 11 year old has already been allowed to make their own decision to end their lives in Belgium              *Top

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