Current time: 26-07-2014, 08:35 AM Hello There, Guest! (LoginRegister)


Post Reply 
Carl Sagan's video
Author Message
mohankarthik Offline
Addicted to Freethought
**

Posts: 66
Likes Given: 19
Likes Received: 4 in 3 posts
Joined: Jul 2010


Post: #1
Carl Sagan's video

Hey

I saw this video linked on Meyer's blog and did not know what to make of it.




Is he cherry picking? Are the historical facts right? Pongal might have originated as a harvest festival, but the superstitions that come with it are still nonsenses. Any comments?

http://www.mohankarthik.com/
http://www.facebook.com/mohan.karthik
http://www.youtube.com/user/nemesisnitt
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Lije Offline
Administrator

Posts: 685
Likes Given: 256
Likes Received: 333 in 186 posts
Joined: Mar 2010


Post: #2
RE: Carl Sagan's video

Ancient Indians did have sophisticated ideas about nature. But too bad that they gave up on grounding those ideas in reality. Sagan, who must have seen a lot of Biblical creationist nonsense, was probably awed by the ancient Indian idea of cyclical time and the absence of a personal god in some philosophies. Here is an article where he says more about his Indian experience.
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Ajita Kamal Offline
Editor

Posts: 976
Likes Given: 234
Likes Received: 241 in 143 posts
Joined: Mar 2010


Post: #3
RE: Carl Sagan's video

The reason Sagan touts the blind luck of ancient Indian mystics in guessing certain facts about the universe is to demonstrate to the people in the West that their chosen superstitions are silly. Of course many of the tales that festivals such as Pongal are based on are just superstitions.

The one thing that we must keep in mind is that some superstitions become 'naturalized' over time because the core values that they express is vital to human celebration of life and nature. I think that Pongal is one of these festivals that may be possibly naturalized at some point in the future. But for this to happen a lot must change, and the easier answer may be to simply create a new naturalized celebration of the harvest festival. In the West, harvest festivals are considered pagan rites, and strangely enough, many of those who are pagans today are not believers in the supernatural. They just personify nature and use the myths as feel-good stories for sake of ritual. They really are pantheists. I don't like going that far, but if we want to "save" certain cultural celebrations that are distinctly Indian in flavor, we must strive to create naturalized social celebrations of our cultural heritage. In India we have the problem that the majority still looks at these celebrations of nature through superstitious eyes, which is why I think that in some cases creating entirely new festivals may be the answer.

"Fossil rabbits in the Precambrian"
~ J.B.S.Haldane, on being asked to falsify evolution.
(This post was last modified: 12-11-2010 09:01 AM by Ajita Kamal.)
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply 




User(s) browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)