Sam Harris writes about 9/11:
Whatever else may be wrong with our world, it remains a fact that some of the most terrifying instances of human conflict and stupidity would be unthinkable without religion. And the other ideologies that inspire people to behave like monsters—Stalinism, fascism, etc.—are dangerous precisely because they so resemble religions. Sacrifice for the Dear Leader, however secular, is an act of cultic conformity and worship. Whenever human obsession is channeled in these ways, we can see the ancient framework upon which every religion was built. In our ignorance, fear, and craving for order, we created the gods. And ignorance, fear, and craving keep them with us.
What defenders of religion cannot say is that anyone has ever gone berserk, or that a society ever failed, because people became too reasonable, intellectually honest, or unwilling to be duped by the dogmatism of their neighbors. This skeptical attitude, born of equal parts care and curiosity, is all that “atheists” recommend—and it is typical of nearly every intellectual pursuit apart from theology. Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under.
Ten years have passed since a group of mostly educated and middle-class men decided to obliterate themselves, along with three thousand innocents, to gain entrance to an imaginary paradise. This problem was always deeper than the threat of terrorism—and our waging an interminable “war on terror” is no answer to it. Yes, we must destroy al Qaeda. But humanity has a larger project—to become sane. If September 11, 2001, should have taught us anything, it is that we must find honest consolation in our capacity for love, creativity, and understanding. This remains possible. It is also necessary. And the alternatives are bleak.
Not long after I had our S class Mercedes topped up with petrol and washed, Watcharee and our friend, Oh, took the car on a shopping trip and wound up banging a taxi cab*.
* It runs in the family; not long ago I was involved with a bang up with the Z4.
You can target us at:
PS: Is this is what will happen?
Do any of you remember this girl? She used to work at The Oriental's gym. I knew her about 10 or 11 years ago. Now she is the exclusive model in a fitness book.
Bangkok is a great city for food delivery. In the past two nights I've had Lebanese and Mexican delivered to our condo.
We are getting a new 24/7 grocery store in our immediate neighborhood.
Also, we have some new artwork at Hyde & Seek.
The immediate area around the Ploenchit SkyTrain station (on the south side of the tracks) has grown enormously during the last two years. The Novotel Hotel has been open for several months and the Okura Hotel (in the Park Ventures Building) is nearly finished. These properties are adjacent to us.
The area on the north side of the SkyTrain tracks will eventually host the Central Embassy Shopping Centre and the Noble Complex. Construction is just starting and these projects should be finished in a couple of years.
The Grand Opening of "Max Valu".
Where are we going to get out of the rain? High security is involved.
We interrupt this 'program' to bring you an Israeli / Palestinian settlement.
Next: Part IV