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August 10, 2006


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"Penguins pondering nuclear physics," was a recent way I heard this type of discussion described.

Are you really purporting to understand what it would take to create a world, to the extent that you could actually distinguish when and if a creator intervened?

Other peoples' actions are often a nuisance. They might even bring danger.

Maybe the God of these systems, (Taoist, Buddhist, Hittite,) requires only regard: as though the point of creating, rather than making a wind-up toy and walking away, would be to have a co-equal in creation. Maybe no knowledge is "final" enough to be satisfactory. We certainly aren't satisfied with a divinity that has no moving parts.

Evolution and Intelligent Design are both rather crude models to describe the actualizations of the truly omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent; neither is worth fighting over.

Edward, I agree that ultimate reality has to be--it just has to be--beyond our ability to conceptualize it. But even though I'm a penguin, and not a nuclear physicist, I can still look around the ice floe and try to make sense of what I see.

Evolution theory may be ice floe-ish. Yet intelligent design isn't standing on anything substantial at all. To ignore what is right around us in favor of imagined otherworldliness: what a waste of what could very well be (and probably is) our one and only chance to comprehend creation.

Also, while evolution and intelligent design may, in the cosmic scheme of things, not be worth fighting over, the fight is being waged here on Earth. It can either be ignored, or a side taken.

For me, taking the "ignore" path is to proclaim, in effect, all is equal. However, I don't see them as equal. Nor does science. So I feel driven to choose and take up sides, though in the long run, of course, I'll be dead and sideless.

For now, I'm on the short run.

Dear Brian,
What happened to the pursuit of Wu?
Robert Paul Howard

Robert, good question. If I knew the answer, I suppose I'd have caught Wu--the ultimate nothing that is something.

The way I see it, leaving aside my inability to have much of a clue as to what "it" is, Wu is like the Wu Chi posture in Tai Chi.

You start from it. You end with it. And along the way you're always passing through it.

Yet it isn't possible to remain in Wu Chi continously. It's the nature of things to be in motion, to bounce between yin and yang, to be this or that rather than none of the above.

More and more, I'm comfortable with my seeming contradictions. Last night I hugely enjoyed watching a taped episode of the next to last "So You Think You Can Dance."

During that hour, I don't know what happened to my pursuit of Wu either. It's still happening, I'm pretty sure. I Wu my way along every day, in various fashions.

Not a straight journey, though. If there's anything I'm sure of, it's that.

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