Economics is called a science. The science of economics is supposedly capable of proving itself, yet invariably economists resort to claptrap to explain the inefficiencies of the global and national accounts and their failed predictions. They talk about harmonious societies and promote philosophical propaganda as fact.
Economics and psychoanalysts fall into the same trap. Diagnostically they can work out what happened, but when it comes to prognostication, they fail the scientific test. The reason is people have freewill and, because of this, while limited to certain abilities, the decisions people make often puzzle onlookers.
When speaking about the economy as being the god of this world—yes!—it is a substitute for religion.
The god of this world is mammon. The economy is about what happens to mammon. People devote their lives to the worship of mammon. If worship is deemed as evidence of religion then the global religion could be construed as mammon, because there are more worshipers of mammon around the globe than for any other form of devotion, be it Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Christendom-ism, nationalism, socialism or any other "ism". The multitudes may be numbered among the “isms” as belonging to a perceived cultural persuasion for statistical reasons, but really they are mammonites in disguise. Money is the carrot all the donkeys chase as they demonstrate mammon is really their god.
The invisible hand that Adam Smith wrote about in The Wealth of Nations can be interpreted as the light of God in the individual or the rising of the self to worship mammon.
- The core of Smith's thesis was that man's natural tendency toward self-interest - in modern terms, looking out for No.1 - results in prosperity. By giving everyone freedom to produce and exchange goods as they pleased (free trade) and opening all markets to competition (international as well as domestic - Smith lived in the age of government chartered monopolies), people's natural self-interest would bring about universal opulence with very little effort from a nation's government. This free-market force became known as the invisible hand, but it needed support to bring about its magic.— Adam Smith And "The Wealth Of Nations"
The parable of Jesus concerning the five talents makes an interesting observation about those who have and those who have not (Matthew 25:14–30). Those who believe they can achieve—do. Those who do not believe they can achieve—do not. There is a reality that lies at heart of the reason why a person believes he or she can achieve. Too many ignore it at their peril.
Irrespective of what many people have been indoctrinated to believe, humans are spiritual beings and not mechanical devises that do not possess freewill. Freewill can produce surprising and totally phenomenal results as well as those unexpectedly bizarre actions that leave people in a state of shock rather than wonderment. As freewill agents, we possess the ability to be unpredictable with a paradigm of predictability; after all, we are destined to grow old and die—unless we find the means to overcome death.
The devotion of one’s life to material pursuits is to exclude the pursuit of overcoming death. Practicing rituals and rites in the false belief that these will extend life is not really pursuing the reality of acquiring eternal life. Both of these belief systems are futile when speaking of seeking truth and the reason for existence—true religion. False religion is a substitute for true religion and can take many forms be it cultural or mystical or material.
Economics of itself is not a religion. The study of economics is merely the acquisition of data regarding the economic value of human activity. This being the case, the economy is not a religion. But the worship of economic value can become a false religion if one pursues it above all else, so that it becomes one's devotion. In a way, this is like the futility of working forty years to obtain a pension, only to find that once the pension is on the table, it is all over.
- And he told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man brought forth plentifully; and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ And he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns, and build larger ones; and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; take your ease, eat, drink, be merry.’But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you; and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ (Luke 12:16–20)
But is survival equivalent to religion? Not really.
Religion is the quest for truth that goes beyond learning what is right and what is wrong. Religion goes beyond experiencing a mouth full of water and out of necessity discovering that paddling enables one to keep one’s head in the atmosphere, where breathing is possible and the direction one is taking need not be down. Similarly, death is no different. Overcoming it requires action—as in pursuit of truth. Why am I here?
Putting off the issue of what happens after death and neglecting the real questions that are pertinent to each one, because we are chasing economic activity or seeking to increase our net worth in terms of material wealth is merely a substitute for true religion: the quest for the ideal life—one that does not end.
There Is More Than One Way To Skin A Cat But It Usually Breaks Down To Cost