Written by Ion Saliu on 9 Martie 2003. La multi ani! Happy birthday to me!
Last year I wrote: "Randomizing: An Art of Scientific Philosophy, Science of Philosophical Art, Philosophy of Artistic Science, Art of Philosophical Science, Science of Artistic Philosophy, Philosophy of Scientific Art".
Some readers noticed that the six permutation elements were not listed in mathematically correct order. Other readers noticed an important absence: Religion. Of course, religion is a fundamental element of consciousness. Some say human consciousness, or human civilization. The expressions are tautological, however. Only humans have consciousness and only humans can build civilizations.
Consciousness is self-awareness. I am aware of my own self. It is never We or They or You. It is that specific thought every human being bears all the time. I am, therefore the world is.
Indeed, consciousness has religion as one of its major components. And thus we can enumerate the four fundamental elements of consciousness, in order of appearance:
1 = Art
2 = Religion
3 = Science
4 = Philosophy
Art is to please, religion is to fear, science is to observe, philosophy is to doubt.
There should be no doubt that art came first and it happened long before the other elements of consciousness came to life. Art came into being long before speech. The early humans imitated the sounds of the environment. The sounds became music over many thousands of years. The early humans imitated the deceptive moves of the fire flames. The moves became dance over many thousands of years. Art made a decisive contribution to speech. Speech, in turn, created other elements of consciousness. Religion was the earliest form. Homo sapiens must have been in awe at speech. It must be that we are the creation of a supernatural force, Homo sapiens concluded.
We can affirm that in the very beginning human life was:
Artistic art of artistic art.
Then, after millions of years, human life became:
Artistic religion of religious art.
Humans started civilization proper when the third element of consciousness was discovered: Science. The science of plant and animal growing (agriculture) led to the science of building. Civilization leaves footprints for the times to come. It all started in Mesopotamia. Ironically, the current place (Iraq) is the focus of destruction these days! Egypt is the most notable civilization of the first three elements of consciousness. We can describe the Egyptian civilization as:
Religious science of religious art.
The great pyramids, and obelisks, and temples are awesome evidence of religious science of religious art. Created by humans, dedicated to supernatural forces!
Full-blown civilization started with the Ancient Greeks. The fourth fundamental element of consciousness was discovered: Philosophy. Doubt is the foundation of philosophy. As Descartes put it: Dubito ergo cogito. I doubt therefore I reason. We can describe the Athenian civilization as:
Philosophical science of religious art.
The same description can be applied to the Roman civilization. The decadence of the Roman civilization that led to the fall of the Roman Empire can be sentenced as:
Religious science of artistic philosophy.
The European Dark Age can be sentenced as:
Religious philosophy of religious art.
Science meant heresy. Only “eppursi muove” could save lives; the Giordano Bruno path led to death.
Meanwhile, the superior Islamic civilization of the Middle Ages can be described as:
Religious philosophy of artistic science.
I wrote software to generate the permutations of the four fundamental elements in correct mathematical sequence. The computer generated the exact permutations in the form:
Art Religion Science Philosophy (1)
Art Religion Philosophy Science (2)
Art Science Religion Philosophy (3)
Philosophy Science Religion Art (24 or factorial of 4)
This human scribe simply compiled the one sentence that describes civilization beginning with the invention of philosophy by the Ancient Greeks.
Civilization is: Artistic religion of scientific philosophy, artistic religion of philosophical science, artistic science of religious philosophy, artistic science of philosophical religion, artistic philosophy of religious science, artistic philosophy of scientific religion, religious art of scientific philosophy, religious art of philosophical science, religious science of artistic philosophy, religious science of philosophical art, religious philosophy of artistic science, religious philosophy of scientific art, scientific art of religious philosophy, scientific art of philosophical religion, scientific religion of artistic philosophy, scientific religion of philosophical art, scientific philosophy of artistic religion, scientific philosophy of religious art, philosophical art of religious science, philosophical art of scientific religion, philosophical religion of artistic science, philosophical religion of scientific art, philosophical science of artistic religion, philosophical science of religious art.
We can detail the analysis to fill a big book. The four fundamental elements create hybrids, such as ideology. Ideology is a hybrid of philosophy, science, and a lot of religion in the mix.
Communism is the most striking case of civilization where ideology was at the forefront. We can sentence Communism as:
Scientific ideology of ideological art.
Communism eliminated religion by force, or tried to do so. In communist Albania, for example, religion was totally banned and all places of worship were closed.
At the other extreme, the so-called radical Islamic civilization forcefully pushes religion to the forefront. We can sentence radical Islam as:
Religious ideology of ideological religion.
The most extreme example is the late Taliban civilization in Afghanistan. All art banned, science closed down.
The American civilization is a very interesting case. Instrumentalism is the only philosophy born in the USA. Instrumentalism considers that the only valid ideas are those validated by the market. Business as a hybrid of science, philosophy—and religion—comes to the forefront. One might have some great ideas to fill a great book. But if the market is not receptive, the great book may die in its tracks. The concept, however, is most efficient and fair in politics. The voters represent the market. The amount of votes determines the value of a political idea. The principle has worked well for over two hundred years.
We can sentence the American civilization as:
Scientific business of artistic religion.
Philosophy hardly finds a home in the American civilization. Religion does have a mansion in America. Huge religious gatherings take place in stadiums; a mirroring of the Ancient Greek (religious) tragedies taking place in huge amphitheaters. There are plenty of American religious events choreographed like big-budget musicals. Televised ritualistic music and dance cash in billions of dollars every year!
Europe was the dominant civilization between Renaissance and end of World War II. Europe is shaped these days as a hybrid between the American model and Communism. Business is strong and respected (albeit not worshipped as in the United States); Ideology however makes a strong effort to stay on the stage. Thus, we can sentence contemporary European civilization as:
Scientific business of artistic ideology.
Notable Europeans make their ideological points in the fashion of Shakespearian actors. (Europe is still the undisputed civilization of fashion and all kinds of fashions.)
China is presumed to become the global hyper power of tomorrow. Logically, more humans in one group means more power.
Let's think in terms of sports teams, as sport is second only to money on the global list of interests…and goals (gooooooool!). Six European basketball players can beat now any five-player dream team of American professional basketball players. Or, twelve American soccer players can beat now any dream team of European + South American professional soccer players. Just one extra head makes a huge difference when the skill levels are comparable.
Such a rule was seriously contradicted in the past. Alexander the Great led a very small configuration of humans to conquering the highest percentage of territory for a single entity. Relatively small nations (by the numbers) such as Portugal and the Netherlands occupied huge territories, with overwhelmingly larger populations. Things have changed dramatically, as each human individual is gradually more empowered. In the near future, I see, any nation one billion strong, with well-educated citizens (also provided with personal computers!) will be overwhelmingly stronger than any one-hundred-million-strong nation. For that reason alone, the process of blockalization will define the near future! That is, groups of nations will create blocks of nations, regardless of historical animosities. The so-called Euroland is a striking example. Britain, France + Germany, Spain, possibly Russia, Turkey...all together now, as in that wonderful Beatle song?!
So, China is at a crossroads now. Still communist in many regards; yet Japanese, that is American, in many respects. Thus, we can sentence contemporary Chinese civilization as:
Scientific business of ideological business.
These Chinese don't give a damn on art and/or religion. Just show me the money, let me gamble for the money, allow me to pocket my winnings, and I shall declare the government is good!
• I view the ideal civilization as:
Philosophical science of artistic business.
We saw that human life was first characterized by a single element of consciousness: Art. What will the future look like? I think I noticed the tendency of one element to overwhelm and even eliminate the rest. It is clear to me that the future belongs to Science. Science, like any other element, has an unforgiving habit. It tries to push out other elements. In the Ancient Greek civilization, philosophy had the tendency to push out religion. Didn't Xenophanes say:
“Yet if cattle or horses or lions had hands and could draw
And could sculpture like men, then the horses would draw their gods
Like horses, and cattle like cattle…”
Religion put itself back into place as a result of Socrates' trial. The trial of Socrates, nevertheless, brought attention to Reason.
We can see how philosophy is more and more pushed out the picture. I believe religion will be next. Science offers exact and more convincing facts about heaven (hell as well). The spiritual need satisfied by religion will be provided by science. In fact, spiritual is a state of altered consciousness. Science has already built the first instruments that can act as religion. There are light-and-sound brain-wave machines that induce altered mind states better than by attending worship.
After religion, art will follow the way of the dinosaur. Art has increasingly become entertainment. Nothing can beat science at creating entertainment. Hollywood is one of the largest scientific venues of all times. Films (more correctly named movies) are more the creation of science than of human mind. The computers are more prominent in “art” as well. More and more humans perceive the video games as an art. The science, computer science in particular, will certainly create a medium that will combine film, music, story telling, and gaming in one package (which will probably smell accordingly).
Thus, we can foresee that science will remain the only element of consciousness. We may sentence the civilization of the future (or the last human frontier) as:
• Scientific science of scientific science.
It will mark the end of the human species and the mutation to a new species. Only Almighty Number knows if the new species will be better or better off. They will still be, however, worshippers and soldiers and actors and managers of Fear and Survival.
Read Ion Saliu's first book in print: Probability Theory, Live!
~ Discover profound philosophical implications of the Formula of TheEverything, including civilization and the elements of consciousness as permutations.
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