We had a very interesting class today about ethics, religion and science. One of my classmates positioned that economic reasons are the driving force behind the bad things that people do. And he wondered how we can remove that from human behavior while citing biological war testing as an example of evil facilitated by economic reasons. (Gov. funding of science to develop biological weapons)
I disagreed. I said, money, i.e. economics, is just a component of human society just like religion or politics, none are inherently evil unless they are abused. I said there are plenty of people who make ethical stands against the money. It’s not fair to paint with such a broad brush (liberals do that a lot) and it’s not fair to say all people are greedy, so we have to do something about the money that influences them. (can’t legislate morality – but liberals sure try)
I bet you can think of times when you turned down financial advantage to pursue a more personally rewarding opportunity, right? People who serve in law enforcement for example are far more often motivated be cops by the opportunity to do good than by the opportunity to earn money. Same with any number other occupations, like being a teacher, a nurse, etc.
I don’t think even think economic choices appear until more basic needs are met, as in Maslow’s theory of hierarchy. Money is not the root of all evil, its what people choose to do with it that matters most.
Then another student brought up “scientism” which our class professors took exception too. They didn’t like this label. The student postulated that science is hindered by religious thinking or conventional wisdom thinking. The professors countered, no, that science by its very definition is accepting of correction. They said, science believes a truth, fact or theorem lasts only until a better one comes along to prove it wrong. The term “ism” is attached to entrenched belief, like communism and that it is not science. It may be suedo-science, as we’ve seen coming from some theories about global warming, but it’s not true science.
We kicked around a lot of ethical and philosophical thoughts and had a lot of fun trying to prove each other wrong! It was a great class today!
I’ll leave you with this thought that came from Buddha, “If you meet a man on the road who says he is in pursuit of the truth you can trust him. But, never trust a man who says he knows already knows the truth.”