Knots and Logs—Ancient Wisdom vs Faith

How dead reckoning has religion lost at sea

By careful observation, recording and tracking different data, celestial movements and time—by reckoning and counting knots on a rope, we can now see what was once a painstakingly risky process is now common knowledge and routine—by science.

And what was was true by faith is no longer true in reality. While Dead Reckoning is subject to cumulative errors (the farther you’re off, the faster you get farther off) we are now at the point of religious reckoning to an aimless wander on the high seas.

And by the same careful observations, we can see quite plainly that the promises of religion have no observable results, but still measured by long spells of hope. Religions multi-thousand year attempt at dead reckoning has taken the human mindset in an unending search for dry land, filled with empty promises and unsigned prayer slips.

Literally dropping a log in the water, measuring the horizon, and counting the knots allowed men to circumnavigate the globe and home again. With religion…we’re still waiting….

Greater signs than these will follow them that believe“. Evidences please…even one? Dead reckoning for Jesus has formed an ocean of ambiguous text and excuses. For what never was, never will be. What is and what should never be —Robert Plant (1969)


Author: jimoeba

Alternatives to big box religions and dogmas

40 thoughts on “Knots and Logs—Ancient Wisdom vs Faith”

  1. “Religions multi-thousand year attempt at dead reckoning has taken the human mindset in an unending search for dry land, filled with empty promises and unsigned prayer slips.”
    You nailed it yet again, Jim. Well said.
    ….and thanks for the morning dose of Zeppelin!

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Now that’s an interesting and appropriate analogy! It reminds me of the stories you hear once in a while of some poor fool who drives into a river or lake by blindly following the wrong directions being given by a faulty GPS system. Even though they can see the directions they’re being given are wrong, they continue to follow them mindlessly and unquestioningly.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I had a medic partner like that. We were lost out in lower valley in the fog. God (gps) told us to turn around, dispatch could see us on the AVL and told us to turn around, but she kept sayin she’s got it. She knew exactly…and was dead wrong.

      Liked by 3 people

        1. They still don’t work great out here in the country where I live, but in town they do pretty good. Better than driver error and a map page change—go to F17 page 63….


      1. religion is indeed similar to a faulty GPS Nan. Unfortunately, unlike Rawgod who got rid of it when it failed, most human beings maintain their blind faith in it and keep following it [religion] even though it has steered people wrong for thousands of years

        Liked by 2 people

  3. I’ve always had a knack for finding my way out of the woods, even when lost. I’m good with a map. I know the night sky and can tell where I’m going in the dark. I rarely get lost in the car, even when I’m somewhere I’ve never been. Every great once in a while I do have to stop and ask for directions, but I don’t consider that a bad thing. No one is perfect, and my time is valuable enough to me that I can recognize when I am lost, and need help. Better to ask for directions than rely on intuition or blind luck.

    My wife, she can get lost in a small hick town. I’ve never seen anything like it. She, on the other hand, is amazed at my abilty to get around.

    I have a GPS, but that damn thing has had me off on a wild goose chase on more than one occaision. I don’t use it anymore. I would go so far as to say that the GPS unit is a good analogy for religion. In that it tends to give you confidence you are right, when you are so so wrong.

    Dead Reckoning, sounds like a good name for a band, but probably a bad nail to hang your religion on.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I can do well with a compass, but fog is a strange animal. Ever fly in a small plane in the clouds? Hell, which way is up is confused w/o the horizon.
      In navigation (for those that don’t know) dead reckoning is the process of calculating one’s current position by using a previously determined position, or fix, and advancing that position Enter religion…

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Fog is an exception. I have been hopelessly lost in the fog before. WARNING! Old Diver Tale Alert!

        I was working on an overcast, rainy-ish day once. There was some decent current running that day, I came up from a dive and the rain had stopped but I could see a bit of fog forming. I didn’t think much of it, I was fairly close to an island chain, and the riverbank true wasn’t far behind the islands. So I made another dive. I came up and was completely socked in with heavy fog. I mean I could barely make out the bow of the boat from the stern. I was like “oh shit.”

        I decided I’d try to find the islands, but I needed a way point to start, I figured I’d toss out the anchor and let the current pull the boat tight and I’d have S as my starting point. (The Tn. river flows S->N) Welp, they had killed the current at the dam and the anchor did not pull tight after 10 mintues, the dreaded dead friggin water. So much for a starting point. So I headed off in the direction I thought, might, get me to the islands, and they weren’t more than 250 yards from my location. Let me tell you something, no matter how straight you hold the steering, you will soon be hitting your own wakes, as you are going in a damn circle. There is nothing so disconcerting as being lost in the fog. I should mention the creepy factor is pretty high too 😉

        Well I realized this wasn’t going to work. So I tossed out the anchor and killed the engine. And I pondered my situation, I still had one bottle of water left, and a couple of snacks I hadn’t eaten at lunch. It looked like this could be supper lol. Well as I sat there I began to hear what sounded like a towboat moving slow in the river channel. I waited till it got close, used the sound of the engines as a waypoint, and I’d crank my engine, run a little way in the direction I thought I remembered hearing the towboat, then I’d stop, kill the engine, get a new waypoint in my head and try again. I worked as a deckhand on towboats in my days prior to becoming a commercial diver, so I knew 2 things. 1. the towboat has radar and he can navigate via the river bouys, And 2. He can tell I’m coming.

        By the time the towboat emerged from the fog I was basically right alongside, and the captain apparently had a man there to see what was up, I raised my yelling voice loud enough to be heard over the idling diesels in the towboat, and asked the guy one simple question “which way are you headed?” He replied “South.”

        Which was good for me, my truck was in that direction, I followed along with the towboat till we reached a bend in the river that brought us closer to the river bank true, and lo and behold I could make out the trees along the bank. From there I followed the the treeline, which conveniently rolled right around inside the bay I had launched from, and took me straight to my truck. I ate a hot supper that night after all.

        Next day I had a compass in my boat, and have not been without one since. I should mention I had an old diving compass with me for many years, the damn thing got waterlogged, and I never got around to fixing my lack of a compass problem. It’s fixed now 🙂

        Fog is a strange animal indeed. it takes away all of your reckoning abilities and leaves you, well, lost in the damn fog. I was lucky that day, more often than not a towboat will tie off and wait out the sort of fog we were in…

        Liked by 5 people

        1. Been equally lost in the mountains near my house. Walked in 15 minutes to fish an old beaver pond and spent 8 hours walking out. Found the highway and hitched a ride back to the truck. I was ten miles off. Great story there SD. I like!

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Damn man. 10 miles off? I can’t say I’m that surprised though, I know what its like being lost in the fog, and it ain’t no fun at all 🙂

            Surely there’s more to this story you can tell? 😉 Were you able to occaisionally hear a vehicle on the highway perhaps?

            I found my way out of the woods once (no fog) by doing just that. I realized I was damn well lost, and after that initial freak out from realizing you are lost, I took a moment, calmed myself down, took a deep breath or 3, and heard the faint sound of a car traversing a 2 lane highway nearby. I accessed the internal map in my head and realized where I was in conjunction with the highway, and walked in the direction I needed to go, by using the sound of an occaisional car as my data point. I was late getting home, but that success was a great confidence boost, I was maybe 12 at the time. 😉

            Lesson learned from both of my experiences is, if your eyes aren’t helping you out of a situation, sometimes your ears will.

            Liked by 2 people

    2. Hello Shelldigger. I am like your wife. True story. When we first moved to Florida we lived in a nice neighborhood of homes pretty much in a grid formation. I backed out of our driveway, went three car lengths to a street, turned left and went two more streets and then across a major road to the grocery store. When I came out I had no clue where our place was. I tried driving around and only got more lost. Finally in a near panic I asked someone walking if they knew where such and such place was. Turned out I was only a few streets over and following the directions I got home. Ron tells everyone I got lost backing out our driveway. He thinks he is funny, GGGRrrr. Hugs

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Btw, I am just messin’ with ya Scottie, pokin’ fun at OUR Neanderthal dysfunctions while trying to do it gracefully and appear halfway like we know how to walk and snap our fingers at the same time, right? 😉 😛

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Hello Professor. I understand. I was tempted to make an off color joke about Ron / me / our age and available rods. Then I remembered this was a family blog. 😜😃😃😻😻😻 Hugs

          By the way, Ron has relatives in New Hampshire that swear by drowsing. Cannot see how they figure it, but I guess it is all relative. Hugs

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Hahahahaha!!! You two. That’s hilarious! It’s all relatives, huh? HAH! That’s for damn sure! 😜 I was thinkin’ you’d comment about me POKING fun at you/us, but I like your “perversion” much better! I know that if I’m EVER up there in your/ya’lls neck of the woodies, I’m stopping by! I would have a BLAST with you guys! ❤

            Liked by 2 people

            1. When her family had to leave Panama in ‘89, they picked a spot on the map and moved to about the crappiest place in all Washington. She cried two years. Maybe that’s why she never found her way around. Glad to be out of there.

              Liked by 1 person

      2. I got a good chuckle out of that story Scottie 🙂

        Don’t get upset with me Scottie, cuz I think Ron has a pretty good sense of humor there. That;s the story I’d be telling too… 😉

        I could see that situation being tricky until you got used to it though. Living in a cookie cutter neighborhood, you aren’t used to, would be an easy place to get confuzzled at first.

        Liked by 2 people

  4. Interesting analogy. For DR to work, one must be moving in a known direction and at a known speed (vectors). Known! I find it interesting how often we use the word ‘dead’ in all of this. It (death) is the destination for all. In much of religion it is the goal and the glory. Yet, in thousands of years religion has not moved and has only been tweaked by secular cultural pressure. I like think of the many goals and accomplishments that might be accomplished without the stagnation of religion. Problem is, when we think faith and belief accomplish things and make us better people, we get lost. We become headless vectors; all speed and no direction.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Ahh, what an insightful post again Jim. Two thumbs up! I especially like your incorporation of one of the greatest rock bands of all-time: Led Zepplin. And those lyrics. Bravo Sir.

    May I share some lyrics regarding the exact same subject? I’m quite sure you’ll quickly know who I’m quoting. 🤩

    He’s not afraid of your judgement
    He knows of horrors worse than your Hell
    He’s a little bit afraid of dying
    But he’s a lot more afraid of your lying

    And then another, if I may…

    Faith is cold as ice —
    Why are little ones born only to suffer
    For the want of immunity
    Or a bowl of rice?
    Well, who would hold a price
    On the heads of the innocent children
    If there’s some immortal power
    To control the dice?

    We come into the world and take our chances
    Fate is just the weight of circumstances
    That’s the way that lady luck dances
    Roll the bones

    And finally one song that is a face-slapping reality check! Hahahaha! EVERYONE devotes their life to something or a few somethings. The most ridiculous “bet” is the one for an afterlife and unknown reward post-mortem, ala “Kissing Hank’s Ass” if you remember that YouTube video!

    anarchist reactionary running-dog revisionist
    Hindu Muslim catholic creation/evolutionist
    rational romantic mystic cynical idealist
    minimal expressionist post-modern neo-symbolist

    armchair rocket scientist graffiti existentialist
    deconstruction primitive performance photo-realist
    be-bop or a one-drop or a hip-hop lite-pop-metallist
    gold adult contemporary urban country capitalist

    THE ODDS GET EVEN — You name the game
    THE ODDS GET EVEN — The stakes are the same

    A life-long bet of all your assets and valuables, and for what? 😉


    1. You are the ultimate Rushmeister my friend.
      You can be the captain
      And I will draw the chart
      Sailing into destiny
      ”. It certainly won’t start with the men who hold high places, it is up to us. They’ve shown a thousand times over they won’t do it. Great comment boss. Love it!! All of it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oooooo…. my, MY you just gave me goose-bumps with that one my Friend! Great pick! ❤

        You're quite welcome your Smartness. But really all credit goes to that brilliant drummer and lyricist, and honestly a phenomenal human being. His gift gave so much and offers so much both on stage and off. And he has given (me at least) a lifetime of euphoria to thousands/millions of protege drummers trying to mimic his art on the Skins, the Drum Kit. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I wonder what is going on in his mind when he takes a seat? Music has a shot at making the good changes we need, but lately…hmm. We should have struck when the iron was hot!

          Liked by 1 person

          1. When Neil takes his seat, behind his mountain of a workshop, art-shop? If that is what you meant, then allow me to offer this please… Btw, Neil’s preparation for every single concert was what he considered to be his honor and obligation to play/perform absolutely perfectly and precisely, 100% of the time. And Jim, he did this many times even when sick with fever!!! 😮 I think Neil played into his mid-60’s I believe? HAH! And he has always had to have at LEAST two fans blowing on him in that chaos of percussions everywhere. LOL

            This is an excellent documentary btw.

            Liked by 1 person

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