For those who have followed the complex writing’s of our very own Ralph Haulk, we have a fresh perspective on the unity, or should I say divisions of the ACOG’s.
The division of the various COGs merely represents (A) speciation and (B) adaptation to certain environments. They all tend to glorify HWA as the three major religions all claim Abraham, with each adapting to a specific environment.
In organisms, you have, “germ cells”, which are directly related to heredity and non-change, and “somatic cells”, which can adapt to environment, but do not tend to breach the barrier of the germ cells. HWA is the “germ cell” to which they point, but there remain “somatic cells” that allow for adaptation by a new leader sent in the “spirit (germ cell)” of the original.
The Jews achieved this with the germ cell of the Torah and the somatic cell of the Talmud. They had Abraham as their father, but adapted to other cultures via the Talmud. Islam follows a similar pattern, with Mohammed a descendant of Abraham (Ishmael).
Mormons have much success using the germ cell of the Bible and the somatic cell of the book of Mormon. Like the Talmud, the book of Mormon is the real authority of “insiders”. HWA was sharp enough to declare himself “apostle general” in the spirit and power (germ cell) of Elijah, fostering new somatic offspring.
Ethics and Evolution
Jonathan Haidt, studying ethics and evolution, follows an emerging trend stating that evolution selects not only among individuals, but among groups as well.
Religion is considered a super-organism, and it will evolve and absorb information, just as corporations do.
This suggests a basic pattern of development not unlike development of human cultures, and evolution of human cultures and super-organisms interact to produce a higher level of intelligence.
The proselytizing zeal of religion is not an attempt to confer some great truth, but to incorporate different perspectives for future reference. (1)The greater the variety of believers, the more information available for the super-organism to adapt and absorb change.
This corresponds to “junk DNA” stored in an organism, which is actually composed of former viruses that have attacked the organism.
Haidt proposes “dual evolution” in which changes occur “outside the mind”, and we adapt to culture and religion as super-organisms. Super-organisms become more efficient at absorbing differences, until we lose all sense of (the) need for difference.
From earliest history, our brains are prepared in advance to accept certain forms of behavior over another, and the most cooperative is most successful at survival. (2)This “corporate” tendency is shown in the Tower of Babel, Genesis 11.
The (Gods) solution was to confuse and separate. This seems to be a pattern throughout the Bible as a countermeasure (3) to the evolutionary tendency for cooperative efforts. Israel was told to stay away from worldly influence. Jesus said he came to bring a sword of division (Matt 10:34-38), and that the way of truth is straight and narrow, and few there be that find it. He told his disciples that he taught masses in parables because truth wasn’t given to them (Matt 13:11), and warned against believing many who would come in his name (Matt 24:23). Paul told us that God would choose the weak, the disorganized, the average, to confuse the strong. He further stated that God already knew who they were.
These are all countermeasures to offset an evolutionary tendency to centralize and unite. Its funny that the strategy parallels what Ayn Rand taught about a few who would always challenge the status quo.
(A) Speciation is the evolutionary process by which populations evolve to become distinct from each others. In this article we are not talking about biological evolution, rather social evolution within the groups that make up armstrongism.
(B) Adaptation refers to when a species changes to become better fitted to the environment as a result of natural selection. Adaptations generally occur in order to increase the fitness and thus survival of organisms. By being able to adapt to the changing environment, organisms are better able to survive and reproduce.
(1) Armstrongism no longer has a great variety of believers within each group. That ended with the Tkach era (the super-organism).
As it stands, each individual within a singular corporate church is but a rubber stamps of their leader. In the book “The Fragmentation of a Sect – Schism in the Worldwide Church of God” by David V. Barrett, Barrett points out that when the WCG broke up it did so as groups that held different beliefs, yet each claimed to be following Herbert W. Armstrong’s teachings. Therefor each group under the ACOG banner cannot adapt and absorb change. It cannot become a super-organism once again. The various groups remain divided and are destined to fail and disappear over time.
(2) The Tkach era ended the super-organism known as the WCG. A Tower of Babel moment in the history of the Worldwide Church of God. The movement is soon to arrive at the same point in history that it was at nearly a century ago. Because the movement can no longer adapt and change it is destined for the ash heap of history in which it so richly deserves.
(3) When God confused the language of the people, he created division that led to the disbanding of the Babel society. If you apply the “Tower of Babel” lesson to the armstrong movement, God did not want unity within the WCG. Perhaps God wanted division.
Another related article can be found HERE.