The cult of excessive individualism threatens the survival of our species

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“The well-being of mankind, its peace and security, are unattainable unless and until its unity is firmly established.” — (Gleanings from the writings of Baha’u’llah CXXXI)

A few years ago I wrote an article on the The fetish of exaggerated individualism and the danger it poses to the survival of our species.

Yet since then the issues I discussed only have seemed to become even more pronounced with the recent turn against global cooperation, the rise of rabid nationalism and the growth of fear and outright terror of any sort of international cooperation. These are tightly coupled to the explosion…

Through the Lens of Renormalization Group Theory

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In June of 1947 a group of eminent physicists gathered together on Shelter Island in Long Island New York. The group included the likes of Richard Feynman, Oppenheimer, Von Neumann and Teller. The godlike and terrible power unleashed by the collective efforts of many of these physicists was still fresh in the minds of the American public. Upon arrival in New York, they were regarded as celebrities and provided a police escort in their bus drive to the eastern end of Long Island. Before taking the ferry from the town of Greenport to Shelter Island, they were treated to a…

How the growth of materialistic philosophy was due to materialistic religious theology.

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The decline of belief in the 19th century was not just due to the growth of scientific knowledge, but more importantly was driven by latent religious materialism. I believe It is actually religious materialism which took root centuries earlier that has fostered this hard split between science and religion. As a result, many on both sides have viewed belief in either as mutually exclusive or at the very least belonging to completely different spheres of knowledge than science. …

The rise of expectations and challenges to religious belief.

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What Emerson was probably sensitive to but is little known today, was that in the late 18th and early 19th century, this expectation grew very acute when a renaissance of messianic expectations erupted all over the Christian and Islamic world. In the Christian world these expectations were known as the Great Awakenings. During the so-called 2nd Great Awakening, many Christians were awaiting a great change in human affairs. A large number of them were convinced that this would occur around the middle of the 19th century. In 1818 William Miller, a lay Baptist minister from Massachusetts after careful study of…

Something which unleashed terrible and wonderful powers occurred in the 19th Century

“The world’s equilibrium hath been upset through the vibrating influence of this most great, this new World Order.” — ‘Baha’u’llah’

Something truly momentous happened in the 19th century, something, which changed every aspect of life on the planet, something, which unleashed wonderful and terrible powers. These powers have allowed humans to touch another world and yet are capable of driving the next mass extinction or ending life as we know it. If you look at any metric of human activity, from population to economic, scientific, artistic or literary output over time it is hard to miss the inflection point one…

Introduction to a video series on the connections between Platonic Idealism, Religion and Science.

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On the second day of Genesis God created the expanse (rāqîaʿ). This Hebrew word rāqîaʿ, is translated as “firmament” by the authors of the King James Bible. Rāqîaʿ is a luminous, firmament or interworld linking “heaven” and “earth”. This firmament which spans the gulf of the heavens was identified as Aether or quintessence known as the fifth element by the ancient Greeks. According to medieval alchemists, the firmament has also been termed the “Supreme Luminous Sphere”.

Despite claims to contrary the concept of Aether is alive and well, rebranded as the Quantum field. The properties of the modern Quantum field…

How matter is math

During 525 B.C. the Battle of Pelusium raged, between the Persian Achaemenid Empire and Egypt. It left in its wake over 50,000 Egyptian dead and only 5,000 Persians, pitting the Pharaoh Amasis II of Egypt against Cambyses II, the son of Cyrus the Great of Persia. The Greek historian Herodotus described the aftermath of the conflict as sea of skulls littering the Nile basin. The routed Egyptians retreated to Memphis and after a bloody siege, Amasis II was captured and Cambyses became the new Pharaoh of Egypt.

Among the captured was Pythagoras, who was taken as a prisoner to Babylon…

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In the study of our universe physicists have managed to construct models which describe the behavior of things from fundamental particles to galaxies. Of course, there are large and obvious missing parts; dark matter and energy or how quantum mechanics works with gravity. Yet still these theories are very successful and powerful. At first glance there doesn’t seem to be anything which indicates the existence of ‘Will’ let alone the Will of a creator. The non-existence of free Will was highlighted in a recent video by Sabine Hossenfelder, a physicist, popular author and blogger. Her argument boils down to the…

The vision of Roman imperial power connected with the idea of a “Pax Americana” is an unhealthy and even dangerous one. It is antithetical to what the US republic stands for and has had a profoundly damaging effect on world stability and order since the end of the cold war. I recently read Greg Olear’s article on “Pax Americana in Peril”. I have a very different view. His view sounds a little too close to the ideas behind the “The Project for New American Century” whose vision of a post-cold war Pax Americana can be blamed for inspiring the disastrous…

How the focus on miracles in most religions leads to superstition.

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“People for the most part delight in superstitions.” Baháʼu’lláh the prophet founder of the Baha’i faith observed. “They regard a single drop of the sea of delusion as preferable to an ocean of certitude.” (Tablets of Baháʼu’lláh, p. 58.) Unfortunately, this sort of delusion is on display more and more during these uncertain times. On social media, all sorts of nonsensical assertions are paraded as if they were established facts. Articles which trumpet how scientist have shown that your emotions can affect the shape of water, or how climate change is some conspiracy and then trot out so-called academics of…

Vahid Houston Ranjbar

I am a research physicist working on beam and spin dynamics. I like to write about connections between science and religion.

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