About Me

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I am the Pastor/Teacher of Rivers of Joy Baptist Church in Minford, Ohio since August 2008.  I am married to Charity since June 14, 1969.  I have four grown children.   Having served in the local church for over forty years as Pastor/Teacher, Asso., Youth Pastor, Minister of Education, Building Upkeep, Camp Director, Sunday School Teacher, etc. Also I have worked in the public place for as many years as I have preached. Charity and her sister are co owner of Union Mills Conf. (Bakery) in West Portsmouth Ohio

DOES THE SUN RISE AND SET DAILY
Part Two

Another example of this culturally directed use of science in education was the insistence by our science teachers that the sun doesn't really rise and set. We were supposed to think in terms of the earth spinning on its axis as it orbits the sun. You know, like those wall charts with the sun at the center and all the planets going around it in elliptical orbits. That's the way things really are. We were supposed to realize that such an out-in-space perspective on things articulates reality much more correctly than our terrestrial perspective ever could. And, indeed, there are some special, technical situations where an out-in-space frame-of-reference is more useful than a terrestrial one. Like sending a spacecraft to give us a closer look at Jupiter and Saturn. Useful or not though, it is a bit much to claim that such an out-in-space perspective is more accurate that our usual, terrestrial one is, just because there are some uses for such a perspective. On the whole, there are comparatively few such uses in the life of humanity. Here again though, we were taught that because our everyday frame-of-reference is naive, we need science to give us the correct perspective on reality.

Now, don't get me wrong. What I'm saying is not anti-science. It would be silly to sit here and deny subatomic phenomena or our galactic environment. And, in fact, I'm not trying to do that. I am taking exception though, to the cultural imposition of a particular, supposedly "scientific" attitude toward reality which is really a philosophic attitude. An attitude that insinuates that our human scale of reality is somehow less real than the subatomic scale of things——that our scale of experience is merely a second-hand, statistical impression of what's real——just because someone in a lab coat discovered subatomic structure in things. It simply does not follow that if we identify subatomic structure in a desk, for example, that the desk we see is less real than the particles and forces we don't see; as if the whole desk is nothing more than its subatomic parts. Or, more to the point, that "reality" is nothing more than a label to identify the furthest limits of our atomistic reduction of things. And that since only the sciences can "see" this reality, it is to the sciences that we must turn if we are ever to understand reality at all.

It's silly to insist that it is inaccurate or primitive, to talk about the sun rising and setting. Of course the sun rises and sets! It's not a matter of accuracy, but of being consistent with a particular frame-of-reference. And from here on earth, the sun rises and sets. It really rises and sets. There's nothing more realistic about an out-in-space view of things. The problem is that when "reality" is defined according to the prevailing theoretical view of things, then every time someone in science comes up with new numbers or a new spin on old numbers, we are expected to react by changing our whole view of what reality is.


Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant Post #196