Mittwoch, 7. Dezember 2005

Sonntag, 4. Dezember 2005

Naturalism Vs. Intelligent Design

I just finished John Lennox' book "Has science buried god?" (in which he points out that the existence of our universe in its very shape is so unlikely to happen, it can impossibly have emerged coincidently), and I am now continuing my philosophical reading journey with his Darwinian counterpart Richard Dawkins ("The blind watchmaker"). Both excellently written and argued, it's somehow funny I even notice myself at times sympathizing with some of Lennox' ideas, even though I tend to disagree with his approach as a whole. There is a reason for this phenomenon: human thinking is not very well suited to grasp the magnitudes neither of the time horizon involved, nor of the number of places that could potentially allow life to emerge. To many people it just seems so unlikely for self-reproducing DNA/RNA to come into existence without a higher-level concept behind. But multiply that tiny tiny probability with the amount of time available (something like a billion years) and the number of planets in the universe (we can quite safely assume billions of billions of planets), it suddenly doesn't seem that unlikely at all.

Now this might not the right place for an in-depth metaphysical discussion, still it's interesting to note that about 40% or all Austrians believe in creationism or intelligent design, while another 40% have a pure naturalistic world view, with 20% indetermined (opposed to the US, where it's 80% creationists and 15% naturalists - of course I am oversimplifying here by dividing up only those two camps, but you get the point).

More people than I would have expected still stick to old-testamental genesis, something that has clearly been confuted by science nearly 150 years ago. Even the catholic church has taken a neutral position on evolution since the early 1950's.

The whole dispute just shows the dilemma we are all facing when it comes to issues that generally cannot really be proven by our usual approaches. There was a big bang, yes, which was caused by the concentration of matter, space and time in one singularity. At that point humans tend to search for the previous element in the cause-and-effect chain, but in this case there might not be anything previous. As of what came before, without matter there is no concept of time. And without time there is no "before", and there is no "cause and effect".

I consider myself a rational person, so that's what should guide me. I am quite convinced we are nothing but stardust. Still, a local newspaper article quoted a famous German journalist and TV host just the other day: "There are no atheists on an airplane during heavy turbulence". It seems inherently human to look for something that goes beyond logical reasoning. Is it just the fear of being alone in this universe and having to find sense in life without guidance from above? Or is rationalism simply not very well suited to answer this kind of questions?

Montag, 7. November 2005

What Star Wars Jedi Or Sith Character Is Most Like Your Personality?

You scored as Darth Revan. You are most like Darth Revan. Revan was considered charismatic, confident and a brilliant strategist who bore a strong connection with The Force. Though he fell to the Dark Side, due to several specific actions he undertook as the Dark Lord, some speculate he became the galaxy's greatest villain to protect the Republic from a powerful Sith empire thought long extinct.

You train in the lightsaber form Niman X which executes usage of dual lightsabers, an unorthodox style that while difficult to master can easily throw off many opponents.

Whether Jedi or Sith, your actions were influential.

Darth Revan


Anakin Skywalker


Bastila Shan


Darth Vader


Obi-Wan Kenobi (Pre Death of Qui-Gon Jinn)


Mace Windu


Exar Kun


Darth Maul


Luke Skywalker


Qui-Gon Jinn




Darth Sidious


Count Dooku/Darth Tyranus


Obi-Wan Kenobi (Post Death of Qui-Gon Jinn)


What Star Wars Jedi or Sith character is most like your personality?

Freitag, 23. September 2005

The Meaning Of Life

Achievement-oriented people often experience a weird kind of emptiness shortly after they reach their goals. As Tom Landry, former head coach of the Dallas Cowboys, once put it:

"Even after you've just won the Super Bowl -- especially after you've just won the Super Bowl -- there's always next year. If "Winning isn't everything; it's the only thing," then "the only thing" is nothing -- emptiness, the nightmare of life without ultimate meaning."

I have never won the Super Bowl, but one of the small victories in my life was when I finished my second university degree. I was already working full time by then, so I had to sacrifice many evenings, weekends and most of my vacations for studying. After my final exam, I was satisfied and happy - for an hour or two. Then suddenly a sense of complete emptiness overwhelmed me. The goal which had fulfilled me before, it suddenly was gone. It took me several days of exploring new objectives, some at work, some regarding my personal life, until that feeling was gone again.

Still, just setting the next goal is only going circumvent the problem momentarily. On the long term it's a mistake to define the meaning of life by such one-dimensional purposes that will be accomplished sooner or later.

Dienstag, 9. August 2005

Alexander's Arrival

Our son Alexander was born on August 6th, 08:19pm. Baby and Mom are doing great. Thanks for the best wishes, and the two baby-geek bodies. It might take a while until they fit, though... ;-)

"There is nothing impossible to him who will try."
Alexander The Great

Sonntag, 10. Juli 2005

What Is Your World View?

You scored as Existentialist. Existentialism emphasizes human capability. There is no greater power interfering with life and thus it is up to us to make things happen. Sometimes considered a negative and depressing world view, your optimism towards human accomplishment is immense. Mankind is condemned to be free and must accept the responsibility.



Cultural Creative














What is Your World View?

Mittwoch, 29. Juni 2005

Mittwoch, 1. Juni 2005

Donnerstag, 13. Januar 2005

What Matrix Persona Are You?

You are Agent Smith, from "The Matrix."

Ruthless. Efficient. Deadly. Seems you have a problem with authority. No one would ever want to run into you in a dark alley. Cold as steel, tough as a rock, things are your way or the highway.