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This is the latest animation produced by Kurzgesagt (“said in short” or “in a nutshell”), a trendy Munich-based YouTube channel and design studio that endeavors to explain things with their own brand of “optimistic nihilism”. They say, “We…want to make science look beautiful. Because it is beautiful.” The video explains this philosophy. Their past clients include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Australian Academy of Science.

In the first half of the video, we see expressions of the dominant scientific worldview, predicated on unquestioned assumptions (dogmas) such as 1) materialism, the idea that matter is the only reality; and 2) reductionism, the idea that complex things can be understood by reducing them to the interactions of their parts; and 3) determinism, the view that for every event there exist conditions that could cause no other event. We see a dogmatism that reigns in today’s science and the application of science in unwarranted situations not covered by the scientific method, rampant in “accepted” scientific discourse. We see the view that empirical science constitutes the most authoritative (or really the only valid) worldview, to the exclusion of other approaches or viewpoints.

We see the ideological hostility that is inherent to science. This has its roots within the context of 17th century’s Scientific Revolution, which to a large extent consisted of a battle to stamp out the oppressive superstition, religion and ignorance that ruled the day. As with all revolutions, the original intent has cycled back to create a new kind of oppression.

This deviation from the true scientific method is known as scientism or what Rupert Sheldrake calls “The Science of Delusion… the belief that science already understands the nature of reality in principle, leaving only the details to be filled in.”

In the areas where Kurzgesagt departs from today’s reigning scientism, we find the freedom or the optimism of their “optimistic nihilism”. Kurzgesagt acknowledges the existential dread proposed by scientific materialism and they don’t pretend to know any more about human existence than anyone else. Kurzgesagt offers a sort of German take on positive psychology and it skirts around the miracles of life and consciousness while affirming that, “We are as much the universe as a neutron star or a black hole or a nebula. Even better, actually. We are its thinking and feeling part. The sensory organs of the universe. We are truly free in a universe-sized playground, so we might as well aim to be happy and to build some kind of utopia in the stars…we don’t know why the rules of the universe are as they are, how life came into existence, what life is. We have no idea what consciousness is or if we are alone in the universe but can try to find some answers.”

Freedom, from a secular perspective is to be at peace with what one doesn’t know. It’s not satisfactory way of life for everybody but it does beat scientific materialism.

Contributed by


Alexandra Bruce

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  • Emotional Evolution.

    Besides the known and heavily discussed biological evolution, I perceive also a spiritual/emotional evolution.
    This kind of evolution is hardly seen and almost unknown.
    In short.
    Vegetative plants are emotional and feel.
    Vegetative animals are emotional and feel.
    Vegetative humans are emotional and feel.
    – This base on a vegetative spiritual nerve system in the known species, where emotional reactions have their impact. Reacting happens by the surrounding of the own centre.
    – Feeling is active and not reactive, where the nerve system base on actions, activities and NOT on reacting. Acting happens by the inner most core of any being.
    – Emotions are in motion. Felling is being.

    Any biological plant, animal and human is a spiritual as well a biological affair.

    There is a survival system on earth, which base on hunting and being hunted, on eating and being eaten. Here appears a spiritual/emotional evolution, which is found in special inside the hormones of the known species.

    Now: Plants eat plants, emotionally and this is felt. Plants also eat animals, emotionally and this is felt. Animals eat animals, eat plants and eat humans. Humans eat plants, animals, and even humans.
    Emotions eat emotions in such a way there is an evolution in emotions, where the highest emotions finally become transformed into feeling.
    Because feeling ever is the same process and because it is possible to transform emotions into feeling, now the deepest and most massive feeling destines the form of being.
    This form is not a material form; it is a just energetic form.

    I recognised that almost all people are longing for some kind of heaven and where being present on earth could be hell, because of all emotional fighting.
    “I never saw a being which is happy inside any war.”

    Therefore, I perceive a spiritual evolution of emotional war energy into spiritual love energy by feeling. This feeling is monopolistic, is singular where emotions always are bipolar und dualistic.
    In scientific terms:
    Light is a dualistic and bipolar affair.
    Gravitational mass is a monopolistic and singular affair.
    Light can disappear, can be eaten.
    Gravitational mass cannot disappear, moreover can eat.

    This was the short term. Of course, there are many aspects, which are involved in this process of emotional/spiritual evolution. Here in special comes the hormones in focus.

  • Brilliant prescript and production, tragic conclusion that the objective is to have fun and doing whatever one feels like doing. What if we were permitted to do just that? Total bedlam, hell on hearth! But I enjoyed the trip into these questions.

    • I don’t know what happened to earth that it got changed to hearth, but this happened four or five times as I coursed through my reply and I thought I had corrected all of the computer interpretations of my words. Hope I’m not losing it.

  • Meh…at 4 minutes 5 or 6 seconds, the narrator states “if the universe has no principles…”, ummm, I then got lost in wtf is this British cognoscenti trying to sell and stopped listening. That idea is easily comparable to asking ‘if fire does not burn…’

    • The producers are German and they hired this voiceover artist with the cheez accent. The VO guy is reading a script in ungrammatical English that’s selling this motion graphics design house’s POV or branding. The design house is trying to sell their services. They evince standard mainstream scientific views. In one video, they are selling the “Syrian migrants”, when as far as I’ve seen, the bulk of the migrant crisis is not being caused by Syrians but by north- and south of the Sahara Africans.

      In my article, I made the point that I thought this presentation contained a lot of dogma.

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