Thursday, 18 January 2007

Stands the Clock at Five to Twelve

It seems as if climate change is showing a couple of positive sides lately.
Firstly, I notice that The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists has moved the hands of their Doomsday Clock two full minutes on, to show five-to-midnight.

This is not, interestingly, the first time these eminent scientists have considered us to be that close to the brink.

In 1953, the clock’s hand were standing at two minutes to zero hour, when the USA and Russia tested nuclear weapons within months of each other.

But here’s a figure which made me gag:

"...the United States and Russia, which together possess around 26,000 warheads."

26 thousand nuclear warheads?

We need –what?- a couple or so to make all the others utterly redundant?

But now, probably due to Al Gore having the nous to realise that most people can’t read and don’t pay attention to anything that’s not shown on a Big Screen somewhere:

"After considering several threats, including nanotechnology and bioterrorism, the group decided that the dangers of climate change are almost as dire as those of nuclear weapons."

"The world has come to the brink of disaster on more than one occasion," says cosmologist Stephen Hawking. "But for good luck, we would all be dead."

Secondly, we see a light at the end of the tunnel when climate change unites science and religion!

Or rather, scientists and religious leaders.

In a quote that has been a long time coming, Eric Chivian, Director of Harvard’s Center for Health and the Global Environment stated that:
“We share a very deep reverence for life on earth, whether that life was created by God or evolved over billions of years, it exists, is sacred to all of us, and is being endangered by human activity,”

However, he went on to spoil his cred a bit by adding that:
“It doesn’t matter if we are liberals or conservatives, Darwinists or Creationists, we are all under the same atmosphere and drink the same water and will do everything we can to work together to solve these problems.”

Yes-way to go for heavy use of a false dichotomy, not to mention fraudulant end-points.

Never mind-our religious views are going to have to evolve, out from under this steel ceiling of metaphysical naturalism we’ve constructed for ourselves to keep religion in almost literally the Dark Ages.

Perhaps the climate crisis will teach us that there are legitimate expressions of spirituality at all stages of human development, not just the Mythic, and that yes, Atheism and Agnosticism are two of them.