Before moving onward (at long, long last) to the oddity of what my own personal beliefs consist of (the specifics), I’d like to explore one final topic regarding the seeming schism between modern science and faith (particularly seeing as how this work is something of a “blending ” between the two.)
Often the most problematic conflict, and therefore the most limiting factor, has been a self-created and self-imposed battle between faith and science. This should be perceived as something of an utter absurdity, one that should be particularly and painfully obvious to us today. Those of a religious mindset should be the most fervent advocates of the pursuit of intellectual endeavors. For truly, if a divine being made us and everything, making the universe and thereby all the components of it we have exploited so far? Then to explore and understand His creation better is to likewise better understand the one responsible for it all.
To explore the makings of the universe: Physics, astronomy, chemistry…? All of those things are absolutely undeniable. And, no less, in a world Made by such a divinity? To understand them is to thereby understand God, the Maker+Grand Designer. As we expand our knowledge, to a religious mind, so too do we come all the closer to the being that created it. So although the scientific atheist has all the reason in the world to expand their knowledge and explore the stars, the religious scientist has an even greater reason to do so! No, it goes far beyond that: They truly must do nothing less! To do anything otherwise is to thusly refuse the gifts of our Maker and God… our very best means of coming that much closer to Him – by expanding our knowledge & understanding of all that He created.
Science drives us not from God, it instead brings us that much closer to Him. Tragically enough, there are many who today cite blasphemy; that the sciences of late have been perceived as colored with faithlessness or tainted by atheism. It seems to me, however, that if God did not want us to know Him so -to merely even be able to- then we quite simply wouldn’t be able to do so!
Indeed, rooted in this is the notion that the simple fact we can -that we possess such boundless curiosity and inquisitiveness- means that He created us for just such ends in mind. Therefore, to be given those impossible gifts and not pursue them to our fullest almost seems to spurn His blessings. In my mind, if God created all, then science is almost the study of God Himself! So by pursuing science and natural understandings, we are thusly studying God’s many works. Mind you, not merely studying His creation, but, from the perspective of belief, also studying real and tangible proof of His very existence!
It seems that the further we delve into our universe, the more glaring the evidence of a divine Creator starts to become. Once atoms and elements, molecules and electrons, all of it seemed straightforward enough. Now, however, with quarks and strings and actual so-called ‘God particles‘, we increasingly discover things that stagger our understanding and all comprehension! Quantum entanglements find fantastically tiny things being instantaneously connected together… even from countless light years apart! No matter where the two particles are located, no matter how far apart they might be from one another, (even at opposite ends of the universe!) their bond is absolute and instantaneous – aka. the limiting speed of light need not apply.
So it is my resolute belief that the priest and pastor of yesterday, culled from the most pious amongst us, should be the physicists and chemists of today. In our modern world, significantly advancing philosophical discourse or the teaching of basic divine wisdom from scripture (provided to that civilization in its infancy) draws near an end. Rather than merely discarding those tenets of old as outdated and untrue, however, we should instead always embrace our past – accepting we would have never arrived where we’re at just now without adhering to those divine teachings instilling us with such boundless love, tolerance, forgiveness and peace. They enabled us to join together and cooperate instead of competing in conflict – to allow us peace enough to lead to prosperity; creating the foundations for pursuing erudite endeavors of the mind – all to better understand and become closer to Him by understanding and embracing His creation.
For indeed, where would our world be today if not for the indisputable goodness and indespensible blessings that those sacred teachings emphasized? It is no coincidence that modern democracy arose from the inherent ideas of equality, freedom, peace and tolerance taught to us through most all forms of ancient systems of belief. All significant scientific and technological breakthroughs of the past three centuries have been made by individuals living in overwhelmingly religious nations and cultures, whether they themselves necessarily possessed faith or not.
Through the instructions as are universally found in those global faiths and their principle sacred works, only then have we seen barbarism and violence diminished. Without that light, still would we live in darkness – metaphorically and most literally, as today electricity would be nothing more than wild, deluded fantasy. Without the blessings of modern medicine, we’d only have lives that are half what they are just now: pain and sickness prevalent, while diseases that have long been eradicated would still flourish. To me personally, the path to divinity – to God – is the path *of* science itself.
And yet many of deep, resolute faith today still fight a battle ultimately against themselves: Declaring that faith and science are separate and innately opposed to one another, that concepts such as evolution are perversely heretical. It seems to me that this is a misguided effort that loses the truth of His ways; seeing us delivered what knoweledge our world needed at the time, and primarily in a form those forebears could understand as such.
In my eyes, there is thusly no battle between faith and science… aside from the one we have created ourselves. God is science, for His creation is the universe such fields seek to explore and explain. Only when we have let ideologues shape and lead over rationality does conflict ensue; rather than embracing science as being of God, the polarization has caused the most outspoken to become inherently symbolic (almost the embodiment) of each respective side.
In this way has science come to incorrectly be represented by those most unrepentant of atheistic nonbelievers -whose faith lies only in their own grandiose existence and self aggrandizement-, while on the other hand the most fervent of the faithful are equally mistakenly seen as utter Creationists and literalists eschewing all logic and reason.
The truth of the matter, I most certainly believe, is anything but the preceding: Instead, I hold that the overwhelming majority of us find ourselves right squarely in the middle – holding the positive qualities of the divine and of science in equal regard, coming as they all do from a Higher Power responsible for the whole affair.
Yet as we all enjoy the benefits of recent discoveries, the continual advancement of technology enriching all of our lives, the most worrisome issue of the faith and science dichotomy is among our youth. Future generations are now enmeshed in modern technology, their lives currently centered around computers, devices and television screens. Meanwhile, on the other side seemingly those most vocal of all would still assert that our world is, in point of fact, only but some mere thousands of years old.
Only by drawing up two sides, pitting religion against science, have we allowed the situation to become what it is today. By clinging to beliefs of old as though our civilization never advances or matures in any way, we are guilty of separating God and science when instead we should fervently embrace and espouse that God IS science. All is His creation, so learning of the universe is to learn of God. To see physics in action is to see God in action. The only reason there are two sides to this is because we are guilty of creating them.
Men and women who harbor a deep belief and faith in a divine being -in God- should be most driven of all to possess an understanding of His Creation. Although we’ll next start to see how divergent many of my beliefs forthcoming on these pages actually are, I believe that this particular aspect -the relationship between science and faith- to be a universality, regardless of whatever details one might personally believe about that divinity or His most wonderous Creation.