The meaning of life on a tactical basis goes down the abstraction chain. To explain the word transportation we seek specifics, such as trains, planes, and automobiles. The strategic dimenson of life goes the other direction, specifics explained by the abstract. Such a sequence might go: Why do we want an apple; because we are hungry. Why are we hungry; because we need food. Why food; to stay alive. Why stay alive; to care for what we love. Why care for loved ones; because that is how we are designed. Why designed that way; because spirit willed it so. And finally, why spirit; because spirit (God) may be a first cause, that from which all else could be derived.
That was a wordy chain but makes its point. We want security. Every human being being at some point recognizes his or her own insignificance. The size of the universe, the power of an ocean, or us versus anything significantly more powerful makes us realize we did not create ourselves. We are contingent, and as such seek that upon which we are contingent. We seek to align ourselves with something more durable. That might be quarks and bosons, gravity, or even the law of gravity, but they are all of little value. We want both first cause and purpose. Atoms may organize the world, but if they do not care, the world may disappear tomorrow and might well never have existed. The meaninglessness casts its shadow back upon us.
Our little burst of scientific independence in the last five centuries has gone to our heads. Science is contingent on us, our consciousness, with which we construct science's theories. But we do not reach, we are merely pushed. Viewing the world as contingent on the basis of contingent agents makes no sense. It becomes the blind leading the blind. Purpose cannot evolve out of the Big Bang; only mindless collisions, sometimes doing this, sometimes that, and in the end meaning nothing. Meaning requires minds, but there is only matter. Nothing exists to capture the meaning. That entails purpose, and it is a causal world.
So where do we end? Only one place works if wish to never have to turn away. It becomes Spirit, a higher consciousness, something not created out of something else. Both self-sufficiency and consciousness are required. Quarks have cute names, but they do not know them.
Our bottom line here finds that the only Absolute sponsoring worthwhile living on this planet in is a god. Now that becomes immediately an issue from both sides of the debate. The materialists deride the concept of god and the fundamentalists embrace it. Both are wrong; both are right. We absolutely need a god, as a non-conscious universe supports no peace, while a human mediated religion typically subverts peace. Should we trust our lives to a group or individual which itself is contingent and thus always susceptible to subversion? Who, then, monitors the monitor? We cannot escape from that deliemma without transcending humanity. Again, humanity is contingent, and thus not an absolute. Truth requires a final arbiter, which becomes the premise from which all meaning is deduced. Induction never gives absolute truth, while deduction always does, but only with a genuine premise. There either is or is not a God. That is a fact; which nobody can contest. And everything in our lives hinges on that question. We should at least be asking the question.
The God we talk about here is neither merely conceptual nor religiously dogmatic. We require a personal God, one with whom we can communicate directly. God and the individual works, but only on a direct basis. That connection thus becomes the holy grail. Subjectivity might be a good place to look for it because science typically throws intuition away. One cannot see the stars in the daytime, but that does not mean they are not there. Perhaps we look for God in the daytime, when he can be experienced only at night.
As our company and character evolved over the years, our ability to embrace technology perhaps dragged behind. We ended up with a confusing bevy of websites, which have now taken up a life of their own. Not wanting to kill off any of them, we chose to live with the confusion and call it an asset.
This specific site was our original and the domain name became concealed in our dust. We have found and activated it again, initially as a backup. The other two sites are at a different server and if they go down so do we. This is just playing good defense.
But in the process it made sense to offer a “Best of Badger Hill”, which can be efficiently accessed in only a few pages. Adding a bit of art to this site here made it a boutique.
The other two sites arewww.badgerhill.net andwww.badgerhillpress.netThey are sister sites, with the same material, just more of it. So we have two general stores and a boutique. In spite of all this website misadventure, we continue to have visitors, which makes it all worthwhile. I suppose since this is our best shot at truth, we could live without readers at all, but that might take more faith than we have. At present, the sites have had relatively close to a quarter of a million visitors. We thank you, and it makes us want to do more. Hooray for us.
Badger Hill Press began twenty five years ago with an adoption story. Ten years later we generalized from story to psychology and anticipated our work being to present an approach for adoption conflict resolution. But our focus did not fit the norm, and since our convictions would not change, our attention did. For me it turned to my work. I spent my career in psychiatry, back in the days when psychiatrists did psychotherapy. Psychoanalytic theory was in its golden years, and essentially only medical doctors were trained to do it.
My attention shifted to the psychotherapy for combat related post-traumatic stress disorder and perhaps became the person who had seen the most patients in out-patient PTSD group psychotherapy on the planet—about 170,000 patient hours. This endeavor became a battle between what seemed to have efficacy and made intuitive sense, with what science was demanding in studying the mind. Essentially psychology became behavioral science, in the process surrendering claim to internal experience because it cannot be perceived. While learning about combat and reading that Freud considered a fear of being blinded on the battle field to be a form of castration anxiety, idle theory became more than I could take. So had it been for his most gifted desciples: Adler, Rank, and Jung.
Subjectivity versus objectivity became the battle ground at work, an unpleasant confrontation actually, not because we lost—even Washington decided twice in our favor—but because civility was cast asunder. In my evolution of this conflict between brain and mind, focus generalized to the philosophical debate between matter and spirit. Resolution of issues that do not live in time and space, such as mind, became my focus because big issues in are not likely to be resolved by small pieces of matter. They likely require big solutions, like spirit, the absolute, a conceptual whole, answers to infinity, or God—and their related disciplines like relativity theory, non-euclidean geometry, quantum theory, or religion.
Our books parallel this journey. Actually, writing them probably led the charge. Passivity is not usually a path to accomplishment. Badger Hill Press has become the subject to which our publishing predicates are now attached. It is home to our efforts to understand the world, and, if I dare say, to make an effort to improve it. After all, every journey has to start somewhere.
Badger Hill Press
Sister site: www.badgerhill.net