Dimensions (1.0) — Introduction

This entry is part 1 of 8 in the series Dimensions
Simplify, simplify, simplify.

Students of science and engineering are schooled to appreciate the wonder of independent variables, where the change in one variable does not affect any other. If we were unable to model the world in this way, humanity would have made little scientific or technical progress. All those calculations would have been too difficult, too incomprehensible, too fraught with error.

We simplify in order to understand. This works, and works well to communicate, to study, to learn and to develop our understanding by allowing us to limit our focus and not be overwhelmed by countless dimensions (some of which are not independent, but require a foundation of learning before they can be reasonably introduced).

  • For example, a scientist isolates a specific variable in order to study and understand how that one dimension influences a particular consequence.
  • For example, a teacher isolates a specific concept in order to communicate to a student; the student practices that concept until mastered.
Learn & Integrate

In science and engineering, once we understand and/or master a concept, we integrate it back into the whole. If we fail to integrate that which we thus learn into our wonderfully complex, multidimensional universe, it has little value; we delude ourselves into believing that we have achieved something of significance.

You would think that we could learn to apply this style of studying/learning/thinking to things that are not inherently scientific in nature. Instead, we seem to accept the incomprehensibility of things that are really not that difficult.

The next post in the series, Faith versus Works, attempts to demonstrate this concept in a simple (and hopefully profound) way. First, it is necessary to introduce the concept of artificial dissonance.

Artificial Dissonance

One consequence of doing all this wrong is the creation of artificial dissonance. Virtues, principles, and motivations which are harmonious in God, are dissonant in us. The purpose of this theme — dimensions — is to identify, gather, and burn these artificial or false truths (untruths) in hopes to reclaim truth from the ashes. Example:

  1. We presume that moderation is a virtue.
  2. We extrapolate that moderation must be universally applicable, we seek “moderation in all things.”

Wow, that was easy! Artificial dissonance accomplished.

We integrate this untruth so fully into our knowledge base that we become blind to the absurdity. We must now be moderate in our love of God. We must be moderate in keeping our marriage vows. We must be moderate in telling “the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.” If we believe in moderation in all things, then we must believe in moderation in being moderate. Say what? We ignore the minor detail that “moderation in all things” cannot be found in scripture. We have created a pseudo-scripture, or “unscripture” that has the appearance of truth, is wonderfully palatable, and is readily applied. Thus, we anxiously incorporate it into our psyche. We nourish this weed until it wraps itself around every truth we know or should know. We prune away real truth to help it flourish. The end effect is that we now have very real dissonance that began from a seed of untruth; every truth it touches is twisted into untruth. And you thought that pandemics were bad!

Isn’t there enough discord in this world without us having to manufacture more? Identify, gather, and burn!

We will expand upon this later.

Series NavigationDimensions (1.1) — Example: Faith versus Works >>

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