My religion consists of three ideas:

I intend to believe only what is true.
I live to fulfill my own enlightened self-interest.
I am the authority over my own life.

Why these three ideas and not others?

A vast number of principles can be observed and stated. These three are among the
most important to understand and put into practice, because they are essential to any
real happiness in life. Other religions omit them. Some religions even discourage
them. Some religions forbid them. Those religions are not interested in the real needs
of human life but in promoting --at the psychological, biological, and moral
expense of their own believers-- other ideas which were originally meant to establish 
and maintain social systems their founders preferred. I am not interested in
establishing a social system, because to do so would exceed my potential competence
as a human. Rather, I developed these three ideas to live by myself, and I am telling
you about them. I developed them gradually over a period of many decades as I grew
to understand the ways in which the ideas prevailing in the world I grew up in were
inadequate to my needs. Since I adopted them as my guiding principles, these three 
ideas have helped me in bringing about profound improvements in my life.


• • •

All true morals derive ultimately from biological considerations.

• • •

Our universe is not characterized by uniformity but by the potential for infinite variability. 
Speaking simply in accurate terms, any exact duplication of anything is impossible. Just
the fact that two material objects consist of different molecules necessarily means they are 
different, and their being in different spatial locations also means they are different. In
practical terms, from the perspective of humans, additional differences always occur and 
can be found. For these reasons, no two circumstances can ever be exactly the same, and 
therefore no book or set of guidelines is ever going to be capable of perfectly and
completely describing what is good or right. This is true also of my religion. Implied
because of this is that every circumstance experienced by any human being is always
going to be unique and that, therefore, ultimately, in workable pragmatic terms, the only
entity that can ever be fully qualified to judge the nature of a particular circumstance and
whether action is suitable or required in relation to it --and, if so, specifically what action
is suitable or required-- is the individual human being who is subjectively experiencing
that particular circumstance. This is one of the characteristics of reality. Of course the
details of human experience often are extremely similar in their specifics, and because of
this it is not always practical to apply such distinctions when dealing with situations and
actions. The understanding of this fact is one of the bases on which human societies can
be established and maintained. Many of the principles actively employed by societies of
all kinds tend therefore to be of sound quality. The fact of our universe's potential for
infinite variability however, and the reality that no two things of any nature can ever be
identical absolutely, and that because of this, every subjective experience is characteristically
unique, does not merely imply but demands the understanding that every individual 
biological organism is responsible, ultimately, for its own perceptions and actions, and
that the dynamic process which determines whether these are viable is life itself.

• • •

No human individual, not even humanity itself, nor life on earth as it now exists, will ever
know and understand completely every detail of every phenomenon that can possibly
occur or exist. So the founders and proponents of religions have always departed from
logic and reason to reach into areas of mental conception where causes are not fully
understood. They have sought to propose solutions to matters which they think need to be 
explained, and they have provided false answers, which many people wrongly trust.

The three principles stated above also assume and recommend ideas that cannot be fully
known and understood by human beings in every detail as they might be applied in every
possible circumstance. So how can they have any value? They have value because the ideas
they are intended to replace, which many people wrongly believe in, have now been proven
untrue, by long processes over many centuries. In some cases those ideas are extremely
harmful to those who believe in them, or to humanity in general. We need for our beliefs
to be true, because untrue beliefs produce unintended results, and every human individual
needs for his efforts to produce the results he intends.

• • •

A man cannot be master of every possible force, and the ability of humans is not consistent 
or uniform; therefore, ultimately, it is the individual himself who is responsible for 
understanding his own character and nature, his own abilities and limitations, for
developing his own abilities, and for establishing his own authority to the degree that he
can.

• • •

Beware, my child, the enemy not yet seen

• • •

Given the nature of human languages, it is difficult, sometimes impossible, to state an
idea in a way that has no exceptions, that is always true and accurate for every person in
every possible circumstance. It is necessary that such statements be flexible in some
degree. The degree to which they should be flexible can sometimes only be determined
subjectively. This means that each person should try to figure out such things the best he
can. This is not a rule or law. It is just a fact about the way things are. Most people ignore
it.

• • •

The purpose of life resides in the fulfillment of one's own individual self interest. 
Whether this can be acted on without restraint depends in large degree on circumstance.
Careful assessment of one's circumstance, including an appraisal of its more significant 
implications regarding actions, behaviors, results, and outcomes, may lead to an
appraisal that can be thought of as enlightened.

• • •

"What is my enlightened self-interest?" This is a correct and unavoidable question, but it
cannot be answered in a way that is always true and suitable for each and every possible
human individual. Societies and civilizations are established and sustained largely on the
basis of behavioral practices and these differ even among similar groups, and the
practices must be of a quality that almost all can easily comply with. Many whose
intelligence and life skills are relatively low must be expected and allowed to function
within the group even though their practices might not be of the best quality. The general
intelligence of those who live within a group tends to be significantly lower than that of
the most intelligent of its members; thus, the practices tend to be flawed in numerous
major ways. This tends to enable the establishment of a plateau of intelligence above
which the rules are different, where those of lower intelligence are excluded as a dynamic
of the beliefs and practices themselves, and in which the members perceive themselves as
superior to the others. This seems to them to be in their best interest, but in all but a very
few cases it is merely in their interest superficially, for they still must function as members
of the larger group, and this requires that their interest be co-mingled with the others'. One 
better solution to this problem is for the individual to separate from all groups as
completely as his abilities will allow. This is always possible in some degree even while
remaining in the group in certain particular ways, such as when having to share a
specific geographical location, a particular time zone, a currency, etc., but it is the rules of
behavior and the beliefs which support a system that one needs to divorce oneself from, in
order to live both in agreement with the individual's inherent and unique nature and in ways
which the members of groups cannot and will not disrupt.

• • •

As for myself, I am not a perfect human. I got a bad start in life. I was harmed growing up.
I had almost no help with many things every child really needs help with. This is not
unusual among humans. So I have done some ignorant things. I have made mistakes. I have
experienced many failures. I suffered badly for a long time. I sought help but it didn't
work. Eventually, over many decades, I fixed my problems myself. The results have been
very good.

The three ideas described above are not just little flashes of insight that I had one day
while dancing or fishing. I developed them over a period of many decades, and worked on
them often and hard, as I gradually realized what I needed to do to improve myself and
my life. I am still not perfect. But compared to what I was, I am improved. The three ideas
had a lot to do with this.

One of the things I had to do, in making my life better, was understand the ways in which I
had been misled by the religion I was taught as a child. This topic is extremely unpopular 
for a number of reasons. People who have dedicated their lives to a particular religion
might feel threatened by the possibility that what they believe in is untrue or incorrect.
They might think they will go to Hell if they believe in something else. They have based
their entire lives on the religion they accepted as children. Children, however, cannot use
judgement in determining whether a belief will be beneficial to them throughout their
lives. They accept without question everything their parents or other loved ones tell them.
Later, when they are fully grown, they do not want their beliefs to be questioned, even if
their belief is false or injurious to them, because they have never questioned their belief 
seriously before and they recognize no need to believe anything different.

Jesus taught that you must never question his teachings. He said to let the little children
come unto him. This is because he was promoting ideas that were very unusual to his
people at that time, and he understood that once a child believes in something it is often
impossible to change their belief, that they will in some cases believe it their whole life,
even if better ideas are available to them.

The three ideas stated above are my honest attempt to share with my fellow humans some
of the principles that helped me achieve genuine happiness and by which I am better able
to achieve results which I intend.

Again, the three ideas:

I intend to believe only what is true.
I live to fulfill my own enlightened self-interest.
I am the authority over my own life.

I think of these three ideas as my church of three principles.

co3p


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