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Recently a powerful revelation came to me. I have comprehended a truth which has entirely changed my outlook on life. The blinding simplicity of it still shocks me. How I could have lived as long as I have, experienced all that I have and never opened myself up to the simple elegant reality I will never know. All that I do know is that I repent my ignorance absolutely and declare with joy and conviction that I have seen the light. I accept in my heart that 2+2=5!!
I know that some of you will have trouble accepting this wonderful truth. I myself struggled with it, blinded as I was by my closed mind and the limiting constraints of “reason” and “evidence” but I have come to see that we do not need to be tied by the narrow “scientific” perception of mathematics. We can choose to accept alternative arithmetical systems and free ourselves from the crushing yoke of rational testable procedure and universal numerical consensus. After a lifetime of casting about for meaning and understanding I know in my heart that I have finally found a truth worth committing myself to, and you can share in it’s glory as well!
My faith that 2+2=5 gives me the strength to face the day. It helps me through those hard times and shows me that anything is possible with enough faith. It makes me want to be a better person, and to help my fellow human beings see that they too can know the joys of Intuitive Calculation. It is the inspiration for my charity work and in time it will be the tradition of my family. Who do my beliefs hurt? Why shouldn’t I be allowed to think what I like regarding “mathematical truth”? What right does anyone have to tell me that 2+2 does not in fact equal 5?! I say they have no right at all!
I ask those of you who are open to the Fivist Truth to gather with me in the community of Numerical Intuition, and I call the non-believers who are open-minded and respectful of the beliefs of others to lend me your support. Please, write your representatives, speak up for the rights of Fivers like me and help me to make a more balanced and inclusive example in our schools. Why should my children, or any of our children, have to learn the lies of the “Fourers” exclusively? Is there not room for a more enlightened, broader understanding of Numeric Truth? Why shouldn’t all children be exposed to the debate? I demand that my point of view be granted equal weight with the competing numerical theory, after all it is just that a theory.
I am sure that some of you out there will want to deny my revelation. You’ll be quick to judge my truth by your limited understanding, maybe even going so far as to arrogantly toss up “equations” and “proofs” as though your “evidence” is somehow more valid than the feeling of warmth and meaning that the Truth of 2+2=5 gives me. Well, I do not want to live in a world where 2+2 must equal 4! How can anyone cope with such a coldly deterministic reality? Know now that I will not be misled again!
What arrogance you Fourists and your pet “scientists” display! After all science is forever changing, discovering new truths and amending outdated ideas. It is not as if you actually know anything at all! In time it may be discovered that in fact 2+2 does equal 5, and because the possibility exists, no matter how unlikely that possibility may be we must accept it as Truth, to do anything other is to be far too narrow minded and rigid in our thinking!
Please consider the Truth of 2+2=5, feel the joy of conviction freedfrom the shackles of basis and let go o f your biased “logical” prejudices.
Count not with your fingers, count with your heart.
I love stories like this. It’s nice to be reminded that there’s always hope regardless of upbringing. Thanks for sharing.
This past year I have experienced a lot of life changes. I figured it was time to write some of it all down. I feel like I should start with some background on me. For the sake of time and avoiding revealing too much, I will keep this somewhat brief.
I was born into a large fundamentalist Christian family. Overall it was a very loving and caring family, although we were not perfect. My younger years were much more strict. Girls were to wear dresses, have long hair, and taught to care for the family. I was homeschooled to avoid the worldly influences. I use the term “homeschooled” loosely. My mother, in my opinion, was very over worked. She had 7 children she was homeschooling along with all the house work and her duties as a pastor’s wife. I don’t know how she was able to do what she did…
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I like debate, I enjoy discussion, but in any debate on theology you’ll eventually come across some variation of “ No one really knows, and what does it matter anyway?” I find this particular point of view irritating and in need of a comprehensive answer, so here is my answer.
It matters because what we have here are two diametrically opposed systems of thought, both of which deal with the most important questions of human reality, and only one of which can be correct. The first system is one based on reasoned careful study of secular data such as history, physics, geology, paleontology and a host of other scientific disciplines which are themselves based on carefully gathered factual information which can be tested, proved or disproved and reproduced at will. This system tells us that the creation of the universe, our race, and all other species was a slow process of trial and error over trillions of years which ultimately culminated in a set of circumstances just right for our development and growth as a species.
The second system is based on a few texts written in an age when superstition supernaturalism and mysticism were rampant on the earth. This system requires that its adherents accept its teachings and principles absolutely, without the benefit of demonstrable facts, or evidence. It values obedience over exploration, acceptance of doctrine over critical reasoning and has throughout history taken the view that all truth comes from itself and no other source. It is a system committed to the suppression of facts which don’t conform to its stated truths. This system has, throughout human history suppressed, persecuted, and even murdered those who have proven, with hard evidence, the fact that their doctrines are incorrect.
If that weren’t enough, there is more than one variation of the second system. Each one absolutely is certain that it is the “one true faith” and so these various faiths war against each other as well as against the secular system. Often these are symbolic wars such as the war against contraception or the war against medical intervention, but just as often these conflicts are literal wars. Whether literal or symbolic the cost of these wars in both material and Human lives is shockingly, sickeningly high.
Why does it matter? Because in an age where we control weapons capable of demolishing whole cities, when we can control viruses of such lethality that they can kill tens of millions in a matter of days, we can not afford to look at the world through any lens but that of hard, proven fact. We cannot afford to have an electorate who believes that the prophesized end of days is close at hand and welcomes it. We cannot afford to have leaders who believe that their god is on their side and so they can do no wrong. In an age when our understanding of ourselves, our world, and the universe has reached heights undreamed of by any age before us we are beginning to have the ability to truly understand the miraculous scope and depth of the wonders of reality. Through our telescopes and microscopes we have the ability to witness wonders and truths which should relegate the posturing gods of the old books to insignificance. But rather than this being the case what we have is a world of religious moderates who are quick to distance themselves from the distasteful parts of their own literature, to separate themselves from the “radical” practitioners of their faiths (who more often than not are doing no more than holding true to a literal reading of those same texts) and instead what was once literal fact is transmuted into metaphor meant to be interpreted. “ Ok so we were wrong about that, but the rest is absolutely true.” or “ You can’t take it literally, it’s meant to be interpreted” become the common refrains of these moderates who hold to their beliefs more out of tradition or apathy than any real faith.
Why does it matter? Because followers of this second system demand the right to have their faith held up in our institutions of learning along side subjects such as math and science, as though they share a level of truth or value. Because whole generations of children are raised to believe that faith is more important than evidence, that if your faith and your reason come into conflict it is your reason that is at fault, that morality comes from faith and without faith there would be no morality. Ignored is the fact that many of the most heinous offences against morality in human history can be traced directly back to faith of one type or another.
Why does it matter? Because we have been ruled by fear and superstition for too long! Because the age of knowledge and reason so long sought by so many is upon us and it is no longer necessary to lean on the crutch of supernaturalism for support. It is important because the world is faced by real problems and god (allah, vishnu, thor etc.) is not going to save us. Science might save us. Reason might save us. A critical, thoughtful educated outlook on reality might save us, but only if we can put aside the antiquated ideas that limit and divide so many of us and concentrate on the simple secular truth that nothing is going to happen unless we make it happen.
True, no one really knows, but isn’t working toward discovery through study, the application of reason, the gathering and testing of observable fact a better, nobler and more productive use of our time and energy than clinging to outdated parables and social strictures because we fear a death we don’t understand or because we’ve fallen prey to the crippling belief that we are somehow incapable of anything glorious in and of ourselves? It’s time to reclaim the power we, somewhere along the line, ceded to some outside caregiver. That’s why it matters.
A wonderfully thought out and written explanation of a complex (and simple) subject.
I had a chance to share our correspondences with my wife last night and I think you’ll find her initial reaction as entertaining as I did, especially considering you hinted at a similar feeling in one of your previous letters. She said: “Can’t you find a way to make these letters shorter? You write too much; just simplify it.”
I took her idea to heart and I want to attempt a “shorter” version of my feelings towards religion and atheism.
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