Tuesday, 17 December 2013

What if the sensible, balanced middle ground is impossible (as it seems to be)


Sophisticated modern thinkers like to come up with a balanced, sensible, middle ground between two problematic extremes - but what if there is no stable middle ground?

What if the middle ground is merely a temporary transitional state between the extremes? What if the real choice is between those extremes - warts and all?

Since humans are (in part) animals, hence biological beings; our natures are (partly) biological - which means we have an inbuilt tendency to reproduce, to expand, to fill-up niches, to explore, to colonize, and to dominate.

This is not the whole story - but it is part of it.


So - when we turn away from all of this - for bad reasons but also for good reasons - when humans suppress their own reproduction, when they do not expand, nor explore, nor colonize, not to dominate - but to tread lightly on the planet... well, what actually happens can be seen all around us in the disappearance of Christendom and the West.


In striving to avoid the horrors unleashed by our biological nature we have instead created the culture that embraces death: delayed reproduction, voluntary sterility, falling and ageing populations, mass immigration and population replacement, euthanasia and mercy killing - and we have given-up on exploring and settling the Arctic, the Antarctic, the oceans and their depths; and of course outer space.


Yes, yes - I know all about environmental damage, exploitation and slavery, genocide, extinctions, the spread of deadly disease, minority authoritarian rule... and all the rest of it.  

But so far there is zero evidence of a viable alternative.

It seems that it is either expansion or contraction - in biology there is no other alternative to one-of-the-above - and what superficially looks like stability is actually an unstable dynamic equilibrium.


So, what is the Christian answer to all this?

Somehow Christianity must sanctify biology with love, as best as maybe.

Because anti-biology is not an answer; anti-biology is actually worse then domination and expansion; since a life and culture of despair, contraction, submission and self-willed suicide are demonic, not Christian.


Indeed, far from Christianity being intrinsically about anti-biological contraction and death; as we have seen, Christianity has been one of the earliest casualties of anti-biology.

So, if anti-biology is of Satan, not of God; we must embrace positive (not negative) theology, the way of affirmation (not negation), the path of the patriarch (not the celibate); Christians must (on the whole, on average) reproduce, explore, colonize and (yes) dominate - or... we will first despair, and then die without fruit.  


H/T to an exchange with Adam Greenwood from http://www.jrganymede.com