I have been having exchanges with several scientists, who responded to some of my previous posts on the general topic of Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection and survival of the fittest. (See : Happy 200th Birthday!, Only Believe, What Darwin Got Wrong, Intelligent Design vs. Stultifying Naturalistic Coercion, or A Far More Interesting Question. In their world, science is the only means by which anyone can know anything. Yet as a Christian, I see four primary categories of questions surrounding life that need to be answered in order to have a comprehensive worldview. The four are:
- Origin – Where did we come from?
- Meaning – What’s the point of anything in life?
- Morality – What guidelines do we need to agree upon to live without fear?
- Destiny – When we leave this life, is there something else? What will become of us?
(Those ideas came from Dr. Ravi Zacharias (www.rzim.org), a highly regarded Christian teacher, who was born in India and converted to Christianity after coming to the conclusion that the Hinduism that he had been surrounded by all his life, left him without hope, and without a reason to live.)
Science does not even concern itself with the last three – at least today. That’s not how it once was. At some point, the definition of science changed. It was a word that originally meant “seeking knowledge”. Today it has narrowed that definition to restrict itself to natural means. So nothing that is not verifiable through testing is “real”, and therefore not “scientific.” Darwinists do not even consider the bigger question of the origin of life itself – only with the means by which any living thing came to be what it is.
Anyone who is honest about it will admit that they have pondered such questions. But that is all the further they go. Yet in order to take even the first tentative step, we must leave the scientific method behind. We must step into the realms of philosophy, religion, metaphysics, or epistemology. And none of those fields can ever know whether the beliefs they derive are right or not – Not this side of eternity anyway. What is required is a different kind of testing. What is required is to think deeply, hypothesize, then ask whether the “answer” seems compatible with what can be seen or observed.
I’m not a scientist, and I am not a philosopher. I’m just a guy who has the God-given ability to think and ask questions. (If you prefer to think of it as an ability derived by random mutations, fine. But I do think, and am therefore able to ask questions.)
The thing about this that is so hard to understand, is why atheistic scientists seem so unable to allow me to think about such things – to form opinions about such things – and to ask questions about such things without yelling, swearing, calling me a liar, and otherwise acting like they need an exorcist. One guy called me a “lying scumbag” – that was his very first attempt to communicate with me – apparently because he thought I quoted Darwin out of context. That, even though I gave Darwin credit for having come up with a number of valid ideas and said that “I do not reject at all, much of what Darwin accomplished. I am among those who accept the possibility that some of his theories have proven true. I simply do not accept all of them dogmatically.” And, I should add, neither should anyone who adheres to science alone as a means for deciding what is true.
One guy wanted to know how I responded to the “evidence” that ” statistically the more intelligent you are, the less likely they …” are to be Christian. Here’s my response to him:
“What studies or surveys are you citing? Although I doubt it, they may exist. So if they do, I’d like to know some things about them, including who did them, what the questions were, how many people were invited and how many responded, and when they were done.
But, assuming there are some, and that they were fair and recent, and even compelling proof that believers are inferior in intelligence, I have a few questions.
1. What do you do with that information? Beyond allowing you to feel superior, what does it accomplish?
2. Do the statistics invalidate the fact that there are a number of very intelligent, very educated, very erudite people who are also Christian? Would you call them aberrations? Do their arguments for the logic of their beliefs deserve an audience?
3. Assuming the evolution paradigm is correct, man is only the current most highly evolved species. When there is a higher one, will we become slaves? Part of their food? What will give us any rights – any sense of human dignity at all?
I have plenty of other questions, but let’s see how you do with those.”
One of the primary things I am trying to do on this blog is to engage people in constructive dialogue about what they actually believe, and how they came to believe those things in the first place. Dialogue is discussion where the participants’ primary purpose is learning and understanding. When one starts out by calling another a lying scumbag, nothing constructive can ensue. Dialogue precludes such practices, along with name-calling, condesending attitudes, cursing, and rants.
Another thing we forget when we blog, is that it is relatively easy to just vent, without having to deal with the damage we cause by doing so. There’s so much of that in cyberspace – it’s almost as if we take on a Mr. Hyde persona, allowing our Dr. Jekyll side to retain less and less power over our lives.
So in closing, the question I want to ask is: Does it matter where we came from, what the meaning of life is, what defines our morality (or even whether morality is necessary at all) and what is our destiny? And if so, how should we go about trying to find answers – through discourse or dissonance?