I breathe, therefore I am

I am

breathing in,

breathing out,

like all the other

living creatures

sharing this planet

and this air.

But more,

that air has been

shared by all the creatures

who ever lived,

been refreshed by

all the plants

that ever grew,

since the beginning

of Earth time.

Each new breath

combines all the

old breaths of creatures,

and people, long gone.

Each breath is a kind

of immortality,

existing long after

each of us has

taken our last breath,

passed on to each of

us taking our

first breath

Down down, IQ is down

After seventy-odd (and seventy odd) years of life I keep thinking I have seen and heard  all the worst of human stupidity. But then I read something said by a woman in a red cap, or a crackpot fundamentalist (of any religion), or a loopy flat earther, or a mad-brained creationist, or a Dunning-Kruger climate change denier, or a lobster-potted Peterson follower, or an addled anti-vaxxer, and I realise there is absolutely no depth to which human stupidity cannot sink.

Harder than the common cold

If religion was purely a matter of individual private belief it could be just dumped in with all the other irrational thought patterns that so bedevil Homo sapiens (and presumably sapiens ancestors, though the other apes seem to be purely rational), a curiosity for psychological investigation perhaps. The problem is that one essential part of the religion virus causes its carrier to attempt to force all the other carriers of slightly different religion viruses (or none) to switch their beliefs, by force if necessary (and it usually is). This makes it as lethal as any of the other killer viruses that have haunted human history – Black Death, Smallpox, Cholera, Polio, Typhoid fever. Unfortunately, while we have vaccinations for these other killers, a search for immunity to religion has so far proved unsuccessful.

Allons enfants

Throughout history, and over most of the world, societies have been divided into left and right, poor and rich, workers and bosses, globalists and nationalists, humanists and racists, atheists and the religious, thinkers and followers, socialists and fascists. The important thing for all of us is to decide early what side we are on.

And we are well on our way

All over the universe, planets capable of supporting life will have evolved intelligent organisms. All over the universe those organisms will have invented systems of living that enable a small number of them to gain a very large share of the resources of the planet. All over the universe those systems will develop patterns of consumption of resources that make the planet incapable of supporting life and result in the eventual extinction of all the life forms on the now dead planet.