Truth without Meaning

"Computers are useless. They can only give you answers." —Pablo Picasso

Life can be messy. Things can get complicated. We ask, what is it all about? What are we here for?, and up steps religion to give us the answer.

But it's rarely that simple. There's that peculiar trick that any answer is likely to play on us: it presents us with a whole new menu of questions.

Questions are a part of life, and questions spawned by answers are no different. Difficulties can arise, however, when answers are handed to us. Because we didn't figure it out for ourselves, we aren't sure how the answer was arrived at, or in what manner it is intended to answer the question. There is no path to rewalk between the question and the answer, so the context is lost, and thus the question remains, for all practical purposes, unanswered. An answer without a learning path is an answer without a question; it is really no answer at all.

The Bahá'í scriptures present Bahá'ís with a thousand answers to life's questions. That, for many Bahá'ís, is what makes their religion unique. Every solution is laid out in remarkable detail. Bahá'ís are not merely blessed with a thousand answers, but they are also blessed with a wealth of official interpretations. The catch is that none of this establishes a context by which true learning can be established; to the contrary, it complicates life substantially with disconnected truths. With the wealth of superlatives, guidelines, laws, ordinances, and musings offered up by the Bahá'í scriptures, each truth finds itself opposed to the next, not because it is logically incompatible, but because the two truths are not bonded by experience.

The lesson here is that the only real way to learn anything is to learn it for yourself. The Bahá'í Faith pushes the boundaries of religious complexity so far that it can at least be praised for teaching this valuable life lesson by means of a very effective ad absurdum example.