What it means to be fatuous

National Geographic has a cover story on a new fossil find in South Africa. The table of contents claims that the find raises questions about "what it means to be human."

Well, no. If reductionist materialism (a.k.a. consistent materialism) is true, then it doesn't "mean" anything at all to be human: in fact, the whole category of "meaning" is nonexistent.

On the other hand, if it is false, and there is something intrinsically mental or spiritual about what it means to be human, then the discovery of the fossil of some creature that had a body somewhat like ours is obviously irrelevant to the question.


  1. Hey this is really neat Gene. I think this is the kind of observation a C.S. Lewis or G.K. Chesterton would make.