6. ABOUT RELIGION AND THE NEW AGE MOVEMENT
WTM FAQ 6.8 Is the Integrative Meaning process in control of us? / Will Integrative Meaning ensure that we will return to our cooperative and loving integrative state and avoid terminal alienation? / Can we just trust in Integrative Meaning to take care of everything?
In FAQ 6.2 it is explained that the theme or purpose or meaning of existence is the Negative Entropy driven ordering or integration of matter, however Integrative Meaning has been such a terrifyingly condemning truth for us divisively, not integratively behaved humans that we couldn’t face it. And so, to avoid facing it, we deified the integrative theme and purpose of existence as ‘God’, thus making it something separate and superior to us, not connected to us in an earthly, practical way. So we can now understand that ‘God’ is the personification of Integrative Meaning, a personification that was necessary while we selfish and competitive humans couldn’t explain why we were seemingly at odds with ‘God’.
Despite this demystification, there is still a tendency to misuse the term Integrative Meaning, confusing it with a pseudo-spiritual fatalistic mindset, that we can ‘trust in Integrative Meaning to drive and look after us and everything will be fine’ type thinking. There are similar pre-human-condition-solved-and-God-demystified phrases like ‘it is God’s will’ or ‘fate’ or ‘destiny’ or ‘what will be will be’, but this idea that the integrative process is in control of us and will look after us, or lead to whatever should happen—basically that we are not in control—is old superstitious, ‘get out of jail free card’, ‘we’re not responsible’, ‘it’s not our fault’, ‘we’re free from obligation’ rubbish. Integrative Meaning refers to matter, driven by the physical law of Negative Entropy, ‘striving’ in the overall direction of order and integration, but there is absolutely no guarantee that despite the human condition being solved we are going to return to our cooperative and loving integrative state and avoid terminal alienation and the extinction of our species. The truth is it is our responsibility—it is up to us—to manage our situation and ensure that happens, and we certainly could fail. We have to get our decisions and actions and initiatives right. We have to have the right courage, strength and vision. As Jeremy Griffith says throughout his writing, “All of the giant strides in humanity’s journey of demystification—our species’ conscious thinking self’s responsibility to replace mystery, superstition and dogma with knowledge—met so much resistance that in each instance the insights were lucky to survive. Science historian Thomas Kuhn emphasised this point about there being no guarantee new ideas in science will survive prejudice, when he wrote, ‘In science…ideas do not change simply because new facts win out over outmoded ones…Since the facts can’t speak for themselves, it is their human advocates who win or lose the day’ Similarly, in his essay On Liberty—a document recognised as one of the philosophical pillars of western civilisation—John Stuart Mill emphasised the extreme danger of oppression of thought, saying, ‘the dictum that truth always triumphs over persecution is one of those pleasant falsehoods which men repeat after one another till they pass into commonplaces, but which all experience refutes. History teems with instances of truth put down by persecution. If not suppressed for ever, it may be thrown back for centuries.’”