31 October 2016: Book ‘Matter and What Matters’ by Lionel Sharman Chapts 7&8 – led by Adrienne

Chapter 7 is titled ‘Back to Humans’ (compared to biology & Physics).   Sharman makes the point that we are much more than our constituent parts, that view is too reductionist, we have self consciousness, sentience.  If the universe is to have meaning does this imply the reality of God?  Is meaning just laws (of nature)? We thought not, there is a spiritual dimension within each of us.  Time limits us – but ‘God’ is not so limited – though our concept, understanding, experience of God changes with time.

Early humans sought meaning in the physical events they were caught up in eg, weather, success of crops and other natural phenomenon; meaning was somehow ‘revealed’, a willingness to consider a higher power at work.  We thought a modern parallel could be the sense of serenity in care facilities.

Is the Bible – literally ‘The Word of God’ or a purely human construct or a mix of the two?  We thought that we would interpret ‘the Word of God’ as the experiences, impressions, search for meaning of ordinary people seen and interpreted through their cultural eyes.  We have found that the physical and biological worlds are much more complicated than our thoughts or experiences (at a macro level).  Humans have a strong desire to know about how things work/operate.  Is complexity a feature or a purpose with a deeper meaning?  Final thought: is sin a lack of willingness to be part of the purpose of God? Is that purpose a desire to investigate complexity?

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