69 million page views

it's all in the interpretation.

Reader comment on item: Musing on History
in response to reader comment: Interesting times

Submitted by Mohammed Waza Khiddif Id'ullah (Australia), Apr 30, 2015 at 23:48

Lots of ideas there. Some need explanation and on others an alternative viewpoint can be offered.eg;

.."In the days of the Roman Empire, moreover, the earth was thinly settled by people whose most effective weapon was a short sword. Nowadays, the earth is jam-packed with people brandishing nuclear weapons..."

That's true - but in one way gives further weight to my view that we are living in the best of times - most particularly if you are white, middle class and live in a Western democracy. But even billions of poor people (who don't have what we have and aspire to it) - have more than any citizen of any village in any far flung outpost of the Roman Empire. Nearly everyone on the planet has access to electricity in one way or another - even if it's a simple PV powered fluoro light whch extends their waking hours. Most have access to TV and media, health care of some sort, billions have access to information on the internet through mobile and desktop devices, most countries have reasonably functioning legal systems - and summary justice is a thing of the distant past (in all except some islamic states.)

Nuclear weapons have been used 70 years ago to stop a war and used with great effectiveness so much so that they have not been used in anger since. They remain in the background as the Big Stick. No doubt tactical small yield battlefield nukes could be used at some stage in the future. But most leaders are sensible enough to realise that a nuclear attack on any Western country would be suicide - thanks to the umbrella of protection offered by the US and NATO. Even if Iran launched a dozen nuclear missiles - they might wipe out several cities - but Iran would literally turn to glass in less than 30 minutes.

"...Since the first nuclear test explosion on July 16, 1945, at least eight nations have detonated 2,053 nuclear test explosions..." I'm not trying to play down the seriousness of nuclear warfare - but it's clear that 2,053 nuclear explosions have not wiped life off the face of the earth (or the depths of the oceans). Even if 2,000 nuclear explosions occured over 24 hours instead of over 70 years - it would probably be survivable for many though obviously some societies would no longer exist and very few continue to function as well as they do today. Nuclear weapons are expensive to make and maintain and are all targetted on locations designed to inflict the most damage - cities and military installations.

But the crux of the matter is that death can occur at any time from any source. The ten of thousands crushed to death by falling brickwork in Nepal last weekend all thought they'd be alive this week. So did the 20,000 people in the week before the tsunami in the Indian Ocean not that long ago. And so did the people alive this mornig in your state who were killed in a car crash today - or shot in a robbery.

So whether it's one person or 1 billion - it's still the same thing. Just much more dramatic for the onlookers/survivors when large numbers are involved. I guess you could argue thugh that if life-threatening but not immediately fatal injuries are involved - our medical systems are going to be able to manage when it's 1 or 100 people but not when it's 500,000..

"..Even renowned cosmologist Stephen Hawking believes the earth has less than 1000 years left, after millions of years of what he considers our "survival of the fittest"..."

When you say 'the earth' I assume you mean human society/animal life? I'd agree with that . But the earth - no. Humans even in 1000 years time will simply not have the ability to destroy a planet this large.

".. Adam's race came into being after the Neolithic Revolution had already begun; ..."

By definition there is a whole lot we do not yet know abut pre-history. Ancient settlements are cotinually being discovered - such as Arkaim in Russia and Gobekli Tepi in Turkey.(n.b. dated to 14,000 years BP and clearly the result of a large social group. Not the 7,000 years ago when the Neolithic Revolution was suggested to have occured. Finds like these and others into the future are throwing the accepted story of manking=d on its head.. And finds are likely to occur in the future especially in Russia with its vast tracts of fertile and forested lands mostly unexplored.

Also - considering that Cro-Magnon man bred with Neanderthals (so that now non sub Saharan people people can have from 2 to 4% DNA of ), Denisovans and as yet undiscovered related species existed - who was 'Adams race?'

"...In our modern day and age, however, with an Apocalypse bearing down on us like and oncoming semi, mankind blissfully ignores the Bible prophecies and proclaims that things will always continue as they are. This, to me, is most curious...."

I think if you have an IQ above 100 - it's clear that things simply will not continue as they have forever. We do not know if it's just not possible or may be possible with technlogical discoveries and political will. I think technically it would be possible for 7.3 billion people to live fulfilling, productve lives - we have the technology to give every single human what they need, we have water desalination technology, agricultural technology, energy generation technology etc to actually do that. But egos and politics always thwart this outcome.

So given that we are at a peak now and from now on it's downhill - the question is - how much will they vary from what we can reasonably call 'normal'? And for whom? Just the very rich? But they need a certain cohort of lackeys to maintain and protet them. And how much do we fight to maintain our lifestyle? Will that preclude others from having what we have? In the past shortages of resources led to war. War dropped the population levels with th resultant drop in demand for resources. So that's the tried and tested (though extremely unpleasant) solution humanity is used to .

For some Stone Age Amazonian tribes and some in the Indian Ocean - 'normal' means thatched lean-to's as shelter , no concept of the wheel and hunting and gathering for sustenance. Much like aborigines here less than 200 years ago.

"...Once that has begun, the Bible tells us, all manner of cosmic shakings start happening. Once again, the irreligious have attempted to pre-empt the Biblical Apocalyptic teachings. They also claim that great wonders will happen on earth..."

If you accept that the future has somehow already 'happened' and that 'reality' is in some ways like a film in a projector (the 'projector' being consciousness itself?) then I'm prepared to accept that certain people in the past may have been able to step their consciousness out of the 'normal' and perhaps see the frames on the tape in the 'future' - then 'prophecies' make sense. But their interpretation is the thing. There are and have been so many deluded 'prophets' and people making all sorts of BS claims. I'm not sure what you mean by pre-empting apocalyptic teachings though? Can you give an example of people claiming great wonders happening on earth (apart from technocrats in love with technology)


Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Comment on this item

Mark my comment as a response to it's all in the interpretation. by Mohammed Waza Khiddif Id'ullah

Email me if someone replies to my comment

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

See recent outstanding comments.

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2022 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)