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Date Posted: 02:18:17 01/21/05 Fri
Author: human
Subject: blind message...


“…Here we must admit that superficial knowledge leads us astray. We must not put too much confidence in our superficial knowledge of things. What we know by our sensual perception and human reason is indeed limited. There is the story of four blind men who touched an elephant. Each one touched a different part. One touched the tail and said, "It is like a snake." Another touched the leg and said, "It is like a tree." Another touched the belly and said, "It is like a huge cow." Another touched the tusk and said, "It is like a stick." They all thought they were right. But none of them saw the whole picture.
Human beings have many ideas about God. They say many things out of their human observation and reason and speculation. But Jesus is different…”

It has come to my attention that what is claimed in the recent UBF message is not clear so there is a danger to lead people astray. The author of the message claims that superficial knowledge leads us astray. However, most of the time, what leads us astray is not superficial knowledge itself. It is rather failure to recognize a superficial knowledge in what is claimed to be knowledge that leads us astray. For example, when the author of the message makes the claim that superficial knowledge leads us astray, it is not clear what he means by it. In the context of his own message, what he claims is true only if what he himself says is not a superficial knowledge. He only claims that human beings (other than himself?) say many things out of their human observation and reason and speculation. However he fails to show he is not doing what he seems to claim other human beings do. Therefore it is very difficult to see that his knowledge is not a superficial knowledge because it has not been explained that he is not saying whatever he claims out of his human observation and reason and speculation. He just claims one thing and continues to build his reasoning without any deep reflection of his own claim, just based on his own secular claim at the expense of all other human observation and reason and speculation.
He uses the allegory of the four blind men to make his point. But he does not examine if he is one of the four blind men. The four blind men failed to see the whole picture not because they had superficial knowledge out of their limited abilities but because they didn’t examine whether what they claimed to know was a superficial knowledge or not. Regretfully, the author of the message is making the same mistake that the blind men made.

Superficial knowledge and failure to recognize one can be great hindrances to our welfare. One of the many sources of them is a organizational doctrine. Let’s say, for example, four blind men get together and form a dogma, let’s call it the blind dogma, and propose that all blind men should do any kind of reasoning according to the blind dogma. Let’s say some blind men agree with them and start following it because they feel very comfortable with it and also because they are blind. They feel so comfortable with it they start to defend the blind dogma at any cost persecuting anyone who raises any question against it and they start to take pride in doing so because they blindly believe it is the perfectly right thing to do. But they never seriously engage in any critical inquiry into it because they think doing so is unthinkably evil. At this point they have given into their own blind dogma and it has taken the seat of a sacred religion. In other words, the dogma has become an idol. We know this kind of blind attitude toward sound reasoning has been at the root of many tragedies in human history including the crucifixion of Jesus. It is because a blind dogma necessarily leads to a blind reasoning. What the author of the message is doing is a blind reasoning according to a blind dogma. Instead of discouraging sound reasoning, it is absolutely necessary that a sound dogma must encourage sound reasoning even at the cost of scrapping itself. It doesn’t come often but when it comes it will come. The question is: what is sound reasoning? But the author of the message is trying to suggest that reasoning itself is sin. Is it really so? I hope not. In the movie, A Bug's Life, a little ant raised a qustion against a giant hopper. The hopper crushed him and said to all ants, "You know, mind is a very dangerous thing." Well it turned out it was a good thing, at least in the movie. Maybe the question is then how a dangerous thing could be turned into a good thing instead of crushing it as a whole. I hope it could be possible in UBF...

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