Enlightenment/intelligence is the learned ability to use language like a master carpenter uses a hammer, and is not just the ability of a human, like you, to speak words. As we are generally related to the chimpanzees and other simians, intelligence is not just our ability to bang our linguistic hammer, but is related directly to what we build using our hammer,which is language, and how we maintain what we have built with language. Take a look at what is going on in our world and it becomes extremely obvious that we are not an enlightened species, let alone and intelligent one.
The way that humanity in general uses language is retarded. Take a look at what is going on in Iraq and in other places,in our world once so fair,and you are seeing first hand how great we are at banging our hammer of words and meanings, and how good we are at continuing to believe that words are meant to be used the way that we use them. The key here, if you did not get it, is belief. Most, if not all, of the people that I speak with seem to think that the word believe is synonymous with the word know or that believing is the same as knowing. That belief and knowledge are two different words that mean the same thing, or that they can be used interchangeably, is simply not true! Look it up in the dictionary and you will definitely read that there is a great deal of difference between the two words and their separate meanings. To know is to perceive something directly, or to have an understanding through the direct cognition of that something. A belief is something like a creed or tenet that we have confidence in, or trust to be as we think. To believe in something, as in religious belief, is to have a firm conviction about that something, or to accept it as true without proof. In other words, because you have no real proof you must believe!
It is also very interesting to note that the root word that believe or belief contains is belie, which means to misrepresent, to show something to be false, to run counter to that something. To put it mildly; the ways that we use our beliefs belie the truth and/or the efficacy of believing in any religious tenets to the point where they cause the disruption that we are witnessing in our world today!
It would seem that belief is to be used when no proof is possible at the time, or when no proof is ever going to be possible (as in the belief in god). Therefore, that we use belief in place of knowledge when knowing is really the only possible path that we can take that makes any sense is not a tenet that I believe, but is a fact that I have used my senses to verify, to know. To put it another way would be to state that humanity is destroying the world over what it believes in (many different gods) because the truth to its beliefs can never be proven: can never be empirically proven.
I would like to make it very clear that I am not saying that there is not a god, or that there is one, for that matter. What I am saying is that our human belief in many, many, different gods has proven to be nothing but an extremely horrible and dividing contention that says that one (and only one) god is the only real god and that all others are false, thereby making everyone who is not a believer in that one god a heretic or what ever name you have for them: infidel, etc.. Look at what is dividing the people of the middle east right now, 2007, and you will see the problem with so many gods on earth. It is called war, or terrorism, or jihad, or fundamentalism, and it is all about killing those who do not agree with, or believe in,your one god. Each religious faction is trying as hard as they can to make their belief the only belief, and they are using the most ungodly and inhumane means that they can come up with to accomplish this task. Belief systems do not even have to be about different gods, but only need involve the few tenets that make up the difference between the sects in any one religion (as in Shiite and Sunni). Each religion feels that it is fighting for its life. This is the terrible promise of belief: that there is always going to be disagreement, unless the most stringent methods are constantly applied, because there will never be any proof that is good enough for someone who has glued their mind shut with information that can never be proven. It has been that way since time immemorial. If we should decide that it must continue, considering that right now we have 6.5 billion people on earth and an arsenal of Nuclear weapons that are capable of destroying all life on earth, the future of life on earth in any reasonable scenario is doubtful indeed when the long run is considered. It is important to say here, again, that the problem is not with god; the problem is with humanity and with the fact that we use belief, which can only be argued about, which amounts to war between uncivilized nations. To be uncivilized is to create war! The problem with belief is that it is so easy to believe in anything as it requires no proof! People constantly ask me if I believe in god, but what I tell them is not no or yes, not because I am an agnostic or an atheist, but because whether or not there is a god is absolutely obvious. The word god is only a label for that which cannot be defined using more labels. If you would take the time to look around you, god is everywhere because there is anything at all! That obvious god is the one that you overlook everyday because you are looking for something fancy, that foolish words have created out of fear, while this Earth, our Gaia, has always been our only one god.
You can see what the belief in god has done to our home,the earth, by those who only have the ability to believe in false prophets. They have come up with hundreds of reasons to deny that this earth is important. Heaven is where they are headed and the earth is an evil, nasty, place to them. To be alive and have a body is just a sin to them. They do not care whether they destroy this earth and everything on it because they only care about their eternal soul. These people who feel that the earth is not worth its weight in gold are not capable of revealing to themselves that they even have a soul, let alone of finding their supposed soul in eternity. They can only pay attention to the incessant conversation that they are having with themselves. Always trying to be first; always thinking about the fact that they are going to die, they have come up with their far fetched and incredible ideas about the sanctity of their immortal self. God does not need to be believed in to be god. Humans need to believe in god to keep from going nuts over the fact that they are going to decompose into the soil of this planet one day. When you see god in everything and everyone around you then you will not be able to consider yourself special because you believe in some superstition. When you see god in everything and everyone around you,then you will treat everyone and everything with the respect that you would treat your god and the earth would become a sacred place instead of a vile pit of ill repute, filled with sinners and we human devils incarnate.
When you can see yourself in everyone and everything,and can see everything and everyone within you,then,you are at the heart of the matter of where god resides. When it becomes ever so obvious to you that you create everything by perceiving it and foster it by loving it, and that this is the greatest of gifts, then you have come face to face with your god and mine and everyone else's. The problem with this view for believers is that it removes their chances to be better than their fellow human beings and forces them to lead from the rear. This view, that everyone and everything is sacred, removes the robes and fancy titles from the priests, scribes,and pharisees, and it puts everyone on the same plane with the rest of life on earth.
So, we need to see that god really has no name, but resides only in the deeds of our heart, that god is named when we love our neighbor as ourself: when we treat the sparrow and the earth and our fellow humans as our equals- if not our superiors. It is as obvious as the nose on your face is hidden.