How to Be Free
Author: Joe Blow

Chapter 4
The Love of Perfection is the Root of All Evil

Most of us accept that it would be unreasonable to expect ourselves to be perfect, but we still see perfection as an ideal, something to be pursued. And yet to pursue perfection, if such a thing even exists, makes about as much sense as pursuing death.

If anything were ever perfect it would be sterile. It would be a dead end.

Everything wonderful in the whole universe has grown out of imperfection. That is how the creative principle of the universe works.

The universe is a system - a network of energy, some of which behaves in a particular kind of orderly way that we refer to as matter. This matter exists in a web of action and interaction with other matter and forms of energy. And some of that matter is alive and operating under its own internal direction as a subsystem of the whole. And the most complex form of that living matter is ourselves as we look out into the universe and try to understand it.

But how did we come about? Through a serious of mutations, i.e. imperfections. Perfection is a steady-state. But the creative principle operates through variation. An animal, for instance, is born which is not quite right, a mutation of some kind. If that variation, that imperfection, proves beneficial then something new and wonderful comes into existence, a new branch on the tree of life. And all of those imperfections led to us.

And yet we somehow became intolerant of our mistakes and imperfections instead of seeing them as an intrinsic part of the creative process of the universe.

How this unhelpful way of thinking about ourselves took hold is a mystery we can speculate about a bit later. To get an idea of what an insidious hold it has had upon us historically we need to examine the idea of God.


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