Chapter 10 - A Poster with Dragons
We were treated to a friendly dinner after the festival was concluded. At the dinner, we were presented a piece of Chinese art, a scene of Lu Mountain embroidered in silk. Jacky accepted the gift for us with a speech, in which he explained our mission in China.
After the official part of the welcome ceremony to the city was dispensed with, I asked Jacky to inquire with the head man if there might be an artist in the city who could create a Chinese style poster for me, personally.
"What kind of poster?" an older man asked from across the table. He spoke in broken English."
"A standard size poster with a three letter symbol inside a circle, surrounded by two dragons facing each other," I replied.
"I can do this for you," the man replied. He wore long gray hair and an almost as long, gray beard. "Come to my shop tomorrow and it will be done. Except, you have to tell me what the symbol is and what it means," he said, "so that I can create the right mood to match the symbol."
"The first part is easy," I said and bowed to the man as I thanked him for his kind offer. "The letters for the symbol are, CSD. Their meaning, however, is not that easily explained."
"I need to know, to be able to create the right mood," the artist repeated.
Since this was China and I lacked the means to explain in simple terms the scientific significance of the letters, the thought came to mind to create a story to convey the message. I told the man that, he being an artist would have the gift to determine the mood by listening to my story that presents in metaphor an extremely complex scientific issue.
He answered with a simple nod.
I told him that the story is about a king of a great kingdom. The king was honored throughout his realm and in many lands near and far. He was honored for his wisdom and for his ability to heal.
One day the sages came to the king and said, "teach us your wisdom, so that we can teach all the people in the kingdom." Being a kind person, the king agreed and set up a school in which he would teach the sages, in order that they could teach the people. The idea was a good one, but what could he teach them?
He thought about that question, then he decided that he would teach the sages certain principles that he had discovered, and how these principles can be applied to healing discords and diseases. He devised a course of instruction for them, and frequently, throughout the course he would tell his students to go out into the streets and prove the principles by healing someone, which they all did. In the end, after a full week of instruction and successful practicing had passed, he presented each of his students a certificate with the letters CSD placed thereon, drawn in an elaborate style of calligraphy.
"But what do the letters mean?" the students asked the king.
"The C stands for Christ," the king explained, "in honor of the world's most advanced Exemplar of the truth about God and man. The S stands for Science," the king added. "This letter symbolizes what I have taught you. It symbolizes, that what I have presented to you is not a philosophy which I have invented as philosophers do, but has been a presentation of discovered, verifiable, universal principles and their imperatives."
The king added that these principles and imperatives are far greater that he himself, and that he himself is but a student of the science involved in making these discoveries. He explained that in contrast to this, a philosophy is artificial and finite. He said that a philosophy is like a religious doctrine that is deemed absolute, whereby it closes the door to any form of a higher perception. The king explained that science is the opposite of that. It is not artificial, but is determined by the face of the universe, nor is it finite, as it always leaves the door open to a higher hypothesis to supersede what has been established at the leading edge of current perception.
"Science is the gateway to truth," the king added. "And the letter D stands for Doctor. It signifies to you that you have been taught by the best in the field, that you understand the nature of science and the principles that pertain to the leading edge of science. It also signifies that you have proven your understanding of it by applied healing. This means that you have all become full fledged scientists and deserve to be honored accordingly."
Thus, in honoring their achievement, the king allowed each one of the students to attach the letters CSD as a professional title to their name.
Eventually, the king became involved in other projects and therefore was forced to close the school. He simply couldn't spare the time for it. Still, his advisors prevailed on him, saying, "we need more teachers to teach the people." So again, being a kind and honorable man, the king considered their plea and consented.
Since he could no longer spare the time to teach himself, nor did he expect to live on this planet forever, he thought about what could be done to have the teaching continue without him. Soon, he found a solution. His solution was somewhat unique. He founded an academy that represented his wisdom and his discoveries of fundamental principles, and he established a provision that allowed every citizen of the realm to become a member of the academy as a kind of statement of recognition and acknowledgement of the king's principles. One this was done, he reopened the school as a part of the academy. This gave the teaching in the school a definition; a unique direction; a specific character.
Nevertheless, the king faced still one more dilemma, a threefold dilemma.
The first part of the dilemma was that he couldn't be certain that the school would actually provide bonified scientific teaching, based on discovered, understood, and acknowledged, universal principles, in the manner as he had taught. Since he continued to be the school's president, he felt that it was his responsibility to assure that the school lived up to its billing.
His second dilemma was that he couldn't even be sure what would be taught. He could present a lesson plan, but he could never be sure that the teaching didn't come out as a statement of philosophy or religion, rather than as a platform of science that alone enables a person to engage in continuous self-development.
His third dilemma was that he couldn't just tell the future sages that, most likely, they would only be taught a philosophy in that school. Indeed, how would they be able to know the difference, not being able to understand the nature of science themselves, which they were hoping to be taught?
So the king sat down and puzzled about his dilemmas. He realized that he could solve some of his dilemmas by lowering the people's expectations, allowing the school to hand out only a bachelor degree with the symbols CSB. He felt that this would put the onus on the student's to upgrade themselves by means of their own scientific and spiritual development until in time they would be worthy of the king's degree of CSD; the doctor's degree.
Still, he had a problem with that. He had to ask himself: Who will determine when, in a person's self-development, the point is reached when philosophy is fully displaced by scientific perception? Who can make this determination for another except the scientist himself, or herself? Is anyone, except an experienced scientist able to separate science from philosophy, and know which of the two governs his heart? Not likely, right?
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