Godhood, defined as "power to create," is not isolated selfish pursuit of individual sanctification. It is not control over others, or the ability to change the laws of physics. Instead, it is service that grows infinitely out of collaborating here and now to create a better world for all people. Ernstraud Philosophy embodies our shared contribution to this common good.
There is no rigorous proof of eternal consciousness. That does not matter. The pinnacle of happiness (that covers all bases) is to experience a life that we want to expand forever.
Reason, the higher power, assures survival and equal prosperity of the human population in harmony with natural resources. We achieve this result by cooperation, without ever intentionally doing harm.
New vistas along the Ernstraudian Way liberate your best self and inspire you to become a blessing to humanity. Academic scholarship remains in the background. In this school, you expand by vicariously living dozens of stories to develop your own unique meaning for your life. I write in first person because that perspective is my most authentic experience of reality.
Kent Busse, your loving guide
Click a topic to expand it.
We apply truth and self-consistency to describe our reality. It is inapplicable to say that this or any other philosophy or any religion is "true."
"Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life,
the whole aim and end of human existence."
"We know that physics cannot be taught.
We will occupy you with techniques,
hoping you will catch on to physics in the process."
Helmut Fritsche Professor of Physics University of Chicago 1967
by Kent V. Busse:
We experience for ourselves the road traveled by philosophers throughout history.
Each, including me, points out a different set of landmarks.
If you say "I have never heard of that before," I am doing my job.
I am not the classifier like Aristotle or the enumerator
like the Buddha, but I set my plow as deep.
I am not a scholar cataloging and analyzing previous great thinkers. I am a creator who may be analyzed by scholars.
The purpose of the material is the thinking you do between discussions. Learn to see every issue from every viewpoint.
Envision your best future self.
Your thoughts become actions that create a new world.
There should never be lineages of Ernstraudian philosophy as there are of Buddhism. Ernstraudian philosophy is not a fully parsed, ordered, classified, and recorded academic system. It is not a destination. It is a journey, a tool for crafting who you are. There is no orthodoxy. If studying the materials helps you mature your own unique world, you may regard yourself as Ernstraudian.
Life is to promote my neighbors' welfare-
-not by competition, but by collaboration and sharing.
Human intelligence is the capacity to apply love to the details.
"We see things not as they are, but as we are."
H M Tomlinson
"I am the one who sees things as they are not--(yet)."
Senior class president and co-valedictorian, Hood River High School, Hood River, Oregon 1961
AB Physics, General Honors, University of Chicago 1969
JD with High Honors, Chicago-Kent College of Law 1984
Highest grade in the class in Torts, Contracts, Property. After registering, I learned of the adversarial model of American jurisprudence (a versus b). After graduation, I realized I cannot work in adversarial environments. Law school teaches us "to think like a lawyer." It benefits innumerable other professions. Studs Terkel chose oral history; I chose philosophy. We both use a lot of stories.
Illinois Bar 1984-2019, retired
Registered Piano Technician, Piano Technicians Guild 1970-2022, ongoing
ERNSTRAUDIAN [adjective, (noun)]: (One who is) independently realizing happiness in society, the greater good, by unselfish cooperation, melding self with others without profit motive or contention.
-- I am (an) Ernstraudian.
-- compound proper nouns: Ernstraud Philosophy; Ernstraud Magazine
my parents were ERNST and WalTRAUD Ernstraud Philosophy is grounded in
unending reverence for life (sentience),
egalitarian social cooperation devoid of profit motive (collaboration),
article 64 "Please disagree" honors your independent space.
article 105 "When to treat me like a cow" -- one approach to practicing Ernstraudian philosophy
When reading the prophets expands my horizon of possibilities, it contributes to my growth; however, there is no way I will limit my thinking to what the prophets believed. Individuation requires freedom from scripture.
The concept eternal being is firmly rooted in Plato's Form of the Good. My present existence implies my future self, and tense is less important than content. Enlightenment includes and is greater than escape from mind control, Plato's cave.
In his book Good Without God, Greg Epstein goes to considerable length to relate his principles to the Ten Commandments. That exercise does not define humanism, but it gives comfort to readers familiar with that particular religious background. My personal background was specific writings of Joseph Smith cited in article 132, which I still support:
article 132 "[ Gospel = Social ] Order" Being equal in material and spiritual things--Condemnation of wealth inequality
The setting for this teaching was the "Mormon Church" (as it enthusiastically called itself during my early development). To bring that up to date, let us hear several deep thinkers describe the profound blessing of genuine faith crisis. They express it more effectively than I can:
This is a dynamic course in progress. When enough readers are ready, we will hold online meetings. Get the discussion started by leaving a request or suggestion at the bottom of any article.
-- December 2022
Moral Symmetry principle (fairness)
In science or religion, humans have equal value. Therefore, morally symmetric taxation is not measured by percentage. Basic fairness is the equalized standard of living of the people who pay the tax. Greed is wealth accumulation. Society is even standard of living distribution. We decide to survive together.
Natural resources including land, water, substances, and living organisms such as crops and forests are to be treated with reverent stewardship for blessing present and future populations. The resources cannot morally be owned or exploited for gain or profit by individual governments, associations, or people. They relate to humanity as a unitary whole.
Human: Thank you God for all my blessings, but why are you letting some children starve?
God: You are my apprentice. I attached their portion to yours so you can learn to distribute. You are letting them starve.
My fellow humanists are invited and expected to understand this metaphor.
The most specific, urgent, and important social service needed in 2023 is to enshrine the principles of Roe v. Wade in every constitution in our country.
Ernstraud Philosophy encompasses moral evaluation of thought, action, and consequence. It does not utilize the lesser philosophical concepts of
Profit-motivated self-interested capitalism claims to be the strongest motivator of growth and development. My life experience contradicts that with case after case of people who would have given up but did not because of those, frequently their children, who depended on them. Metaphorically, food is most nourishing when we feed each other.