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Fri, Nov 9, 2018, 10:44am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S3: Who Watches the Watchers

Solid episode with minor flaws.

I did not think it was anti-religion. It was more a defense of critical thinking against superstition. Despite all the wonderful philosophy that the Indians, Chinese or the Greek came up with, science as an enterprise and scientific thinking as a community activity (as opposed to activities of individuals who could not be understood by others) could not form until the Enlightenment. Despite the last couple centuries of science's wonders, we still encounter rampant pseudo-science, belief in superstitious phenomena, etc. in the 21st century. Our normal tendency as human beings is to see patterns, even when there are none; so we tend to a state of ignorance very easily. Hence critical thinking is something that needs vigilant defense all the time.

The Mintakans seem to have arrived on critical thinking much earlier in their development and that is something precious and if the encounter with the Federation would damage that, it would be terrible. No wonder Picard is so protective.

PS: I was not surprised that this episode created so much passionate debate here. What I found surprising is the limited knowledge about world religions. As a non-practising Muslim, I am saddened by the vilification of the entire religion. It is not that much worse than Catholicism, which has been defended vigorously in the comments. By the way, the defense of Catholicism sounded too familiar to me; in Muslim-dominant countries, similar defenses are taught to kids. For example that Arabs used to bury their little girls until Islam arrived, that people fought over stone idols, etc. etc. During the golden age of Islam, people with mental disorders were being treated in hospitals with music, while in Christian Europe such people were subject to exorcism. Noone tells or owns the atrocities committed by the members of their religion; their religion is the best and every wrong that is committed under its banner is considered a mistake by a handful of misguided practitioners. I recommend any person from any religion to read a lot of history of the world religions; you will find it difficult at first, but then it will give you freedom to seek the actual core of your beliefs.
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