In this post, we will examine 3 related areas of discussion. They are related in that general failures to understand them are the sources of most (if not all) of our problems in the history, and pre-history, of the Sapiens species. Natural law governs everything in the real world, but we need to create fictions to draw meaning among the events of natural law. And we need to understand context to have more precise knowledge among the consequences of natural law interacting with human adaptation.
Natural law is not a topic for debate. It applies in all events. It cannot be overridden nor forestalled. In the literature of freedom, you may encounter a question about natural law which might infer that its existence is a matter of agreement or disagreement. You may see a phrase such as, “he was a foremost proponent of natural law.” From that, one might interpolate a premise whereby natural law requires advocacy. In some cases, one may draw the faulty conclusion that if you don’t like the consequences of natural law, then you can ignore natural law.
Natural law is not a menu item. Natural law always applies, like it or not. An example is the law of gravity, which must always be considered. Sure, technicians can simulate “zero gravity,” but only within the framework of gravity. Sure, random events can temporarily make it seem that gravity has taken a holiday, but that is only defined within the precise characteristics of gravity. But think of this, gravity exists, in every venue, at all times in the Universe.
Natural law underlies everything, whether we acknowledge it or not.
Another example of a natural law is that all living things are mortal. I have been on the lookout for immortality for a long time, but so far to no avail. In fact I am now beginning to outlive many previously selected candidates. Nobody has been powerful enough to live forever. Methuselah? He was going great for more than 900 years, but he eventually underwhelmed his bucket list.
How about this natural law: for every action there must be an equal and opposite reaction. That is to say that if a weight of 1000 pounds must be lifted, there must be 1000 pounds of force applied in an upward direction. When is Congress going to change that? When will actions not involve consequences. One of the reasons this natural law is so hard to conceptualize is that the force and its opposite often appear to be unequal in a technical sense. The ancient torture of drawing and quartering seems to say, momentarily, that a human body has more strength than the sum strength of four horses. It is more correct to say that the sum of 1 set of forces must be equal to the sum of any set of opposing forces. It can get complicated, but never overridden.
It is a natural law that ordinary rocks are harder than ordinary marshmallows, but ordinary diamonds are harder than the average rock. No set of fictional rules can counter this, only can they illuminate this.
That which is manufactured by artificially combining facts of natural law is fiction. Any one individual can only directly perceive natural phenomena by chance (this itself is in accord with natural law). These chances are separate from one another in space and time. Therefore, the individual must fictionalize the connections among events. Scientists try to do this with objectivity, with fair measurements and conclusions based on probability. But there are no completely objective observers, most of us probably having overweening self-interests which blur our outlooks.
Maybe it’s just me, but I can merely look at others and see how their short-term interests are nearly always served, at the expense of their long-term interests. For instance, a person may let short-term considerations about coronavirus persuade her to wear a mask to a job interview, rather than reasoning that a prospective employer may instantly reject her as a carrier, or a hypochondriac, or a kook.
No one can know everything. Most simply because there is no orderly structure or place for all information. So everyone must extrapolate and interpolate among knowns and likelihoods in order to make rational guesses about all the unknowns. Donald Rumsfeld famously told us there are knowns, known unknowns, and unknown unknowns.
Everything must be viewed within an appropriate context. First, the context which you build through experience with previously observed natural phenomena and the fictions that you provide for getting the most realistic perception of reality. And the second context comes from outside — what kind of freight has been attached due to the self-interest of others? Also, we must consider whether the self-interest has been introduced by a natural desire for well-being, or a more sinister impulsion by greed, bias toward exploitation, ignorance, stupidity, and/or aggression.
We are often misled about context. Inquiries are often deflected by claiming a lack of faith between what is said and what is not said. Such cherrypicking can be either deceitful or innocent. One must evaluate the completeness of contextual information.
— Verbal Vol
Open This Content