Superstition: Social Retardation

Humans have sent people to Luna; we have sent robots to the planets and their satellites; Poliomyelitis, Smallpox, Typhoid, and a score of other once-dreaded diseases are no longer the very real threat they were to thousands of millions of people; individual humans can converse in real-time to others thousands of miles away. Humanity has achieved a great deal since the old flint-tools days: we have an excellent idea on how the universe was created (Big Bang Singularity, quantum vacuum fluctuations, inflationary model, etc.); we have finally discovered how we ourselves have come to be here on Earth (evolution via Darwinian Selection); we can even determine our own future to a huge degree of freedom, more than any other life form on Earth (as far as we know).

But couldn't we have achieved these things sooner? It has been roughly 2,400 since the Greeks knew Earth was a sphere: they even calculated its aproximate size. The worked out a fair estimate of the size of Luna and how far away Luna is, and yet it took two and a half millennia to actually go there. Given how increadably creative and clever humans are, why did it take so damn long?

"To assert that the earth revolves around the sun is as erroneous as to claim that Jesus was not born of a virgin." - Cardinal Bellarmine 1615, during the trial of Galileo.
I suspect that superstition is one reason why humanity has not achieved all that it could. Think of the huge resources that have been expended by individuals and governments on such things as "remote viewing," "thought transference," "psychokenesis," "psychic surgery," "faith healing," astrology, and a nearly endless list of other false beliefs. How much money do these scams rake in from the gullible every year? Hundreds of millions? Thousands of millions? How much time and effort has been expended on these false hopes?

In order to survive, humanity must grow up. It must put away its childish beliefs, and look at the world the way it really is. Society is getting too complex to be run by the ignorant, the foolish, the gullible (as has usually been the case): all our resources, all out critical thinking abilities will be required to survive.

If humanity had not been aflicted with its seeming desire to believe in that which is not true, I wonder if we would be out among the stars by now. Certainly we could have sent humans to Mars and beyond.

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