Friday, December 24, 2010

Natural Law, Natural Religion

 Commentary by walford

"Natural Law" is a concept that developed under the Enlightenment. It essentially means that we are all born free and that the only legitimate purpose of government is to protect our freedoms. That means it should protect us from criminals..., foreign invaders and to settle disputes. It means that we can do anything so long as it does not adversely affect anyone else [hence pollution would still be illegal and the existing laws could be even more strict].

It does not mean that government should provide for us or coerce us to conform to an arbitrarily defined Utopian ideal designed by a self-appointed elite.

Natural Religion is that which is based upon the Laws of Nature, which are to be discovered, not made by Man. The Holy Scriptures are written in how the Divine operates directly rather than in the writings of man. Penalty and reward issue from the consequences of our decisions -- collectively and individually. If one puts his hand in a fire, he burns. If we engage in behaviors that create an environment that would spread disease, that tribe with be wiped out. If our government implements an economic system based upon faulty logic, the system will collapse.

In Natural Law and Natural Religion, the standards are understood as objective -- externally generated. Under Utopian ideology and dogmatic religion, the standards are subjective -- internally generated. Under those ideologies, rather than learning of the world and adapting, the object is to force others to conform to one's own perspective because we believe we each generate our own reality. The content of other people's minds is thus a potential threat as contrary thoughts can potentially destroy the arbitrary ideal.