Come, prune & trim away with me... Let's try to shape our world together!

Monday, October 18, 2010


A close friend's dad passed away a few weeks ago.  His dad suffered a stroke and was bed ridden for quite some time.  His health, without any medical intervention, steadily and quickly deteriorated until finally, he peacefully joined his Creator.

My friend's family is a member of an ultra-conservative Christian group that does not allow for human intervention even in the gravest of medical conditions.  They rely solely on prayers, believing that man neither has the right nor the power to intervene in the natural laws of life and death.  As I am not family, I have no right to offer any comment or opinion on this.  What I do offer to the bereaved family are my sympathy and prayers.  May he rest in peace. 

I wrote this blog neither to judge my friend's family's faith nor justify my own.  I'd just like to throw out a question and maybe, you will agree or disagree with me (preferably within this blog, thru your comments!) - a question that is related to my story above that has gotten me to thinking quite deeply again:  What is man capable of doing and what right does he have in pursuing his quest for a longer, healthier and happier life, short of playing God?  Is man already at his best? 


Yes, physically, I think we have.  We have reached the top of the food chain and our bodies seem to have achieved the best engineering we could ever need, much like the crocodile and the shark.  Even in this sometimes dog-eat-dog world, we have not grown bigger ears or sharper teeth like the big bad wolf.  We have not developed a second pair of feet to run faster in the daily rat race for success, or an eye at the back of our heads so we can flee from our backstabbers.  Pardon the pun, but isn't it that indeed, evolution is borne out of the need to survive?  But no, I don't think man has reached his full potential… yet.  Yes, our bodies are 'perfect', as we were created in the image of our perfect Creator (pardon me again, for mixing the theory of evolution with the dictates of my faith that we all came from our first parents, Adam and Eve).  In His infinite wisdom, He gave the human body everything it needs, exactly what it needs. Among others, a pair each of hands, feet, eyes, and ears, a heart and yes,  a brain, a very BIG brain that is made up of millions of cells which we have not yet fully tapped.  THE brain, that is where I think man still has the capacity to evolve. 

God gave me only two hands because He knew it will be enough to put food into my mouth, to build a shelter to protect me from the elements, and to do all other things in between.  He gave me two legs to keep me upright, agile and mobile.  He knew I only needed one heart, with enough pumping power to deliver life-sustaining blood to the rest of my body, two eyes enough to see 180 degrees at any one time and a flexible neck to turn that to 360...  So then, why did He give me such a big brain, so big that I only get to use a very small portion of it?  Could it be that He intended me to continue evolving even when the rest of my body has already reached its optimum form? 

Evolution in the brain, tapping the intelligence and reason that was put in there for a purpose, starts with the spark of an idea that grows into a chain of thoughts and deeds that could not only be life-changing but specie-saving: electricity, penicillin, air travel, organ transplant, in-vitro fertilization, viagra... But unlike typical biological evolution which happens ever so slowly over millions of years, the evolution that is conceived in the brain doesn't need to alter the body anymore, because it can change the environment and anything else that can improve, prolong or propagate human life in a much quicker pace.  Evolutionary ‘improvements’ can now benefit humankind within the same generation as it happens.  Though some may argue that such is not natural, what else could be more natural than the capacity of the human brain to discover and invent?

Perhaps even at this point, the connection between the story at the top of this post and the majority of what I've written so far is not entirely comprehensible.  So is evolution.  My bottom line is, God made man as the center of His creation.  He equipped him with the natural resources of this world and an awesome big brain to enable him to fully utilize these resources in his quest for a longer, healthier and happier life.  The ultimate engineer that He is, I dont think He would have overspecified the capacity of the brain if He did not mean for man to use it.

But then again, what is the ultimate form of happiness, isn't it salvation?  So, all-knowing as He is, He also gave man a conscience to guide his brain.  At that moment, the brain ceased to be.  Man now has the mind.


  1. Oooo... food for thought. I like your ending!:-D

  2. When, exactly, did the brain evolve into a mind? How long has man been around before his/her conscience emerge?

    I, too, like the way your blog concluded. It just raised a few more questions. :P

  3. Hi RC. Hmmm, neither am I an anthropologist nor a theologian but I think it would all depend on how we'd look at man's coming to being.

    If we take it from the Biblical point of view, I would think that it would be at the moment that Adam & Eve realized that they were naked, after eating the forbidden fruit. Prior to that, man was basically relying on instict and therefore easily allured by wordly needs. But if we'd look at it from the scientific point of view, I think it would be around the same time when our basic animal instincts were superceded by our brain's capacity for logic and reason.

    Thanks for the very stimulating question...

  4. and oh, hi Xenia! Thanks for reading & commenting. Looking forward to seeing your blog too!


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