The Importance of Not Discussing What We Have Faith In
The following essay is re-posted to Docudharma from July 22, 2007 posting on my own blog.
Is the One Required of the Other?
I am intrigued by the gulf between God and religion.
Can anyone doubt that a superior intelligence must have created the sun, the stars, the planets, the entire universe, life …the forms notwithstanding? But what is the origin, the source of the intelligence powerful enough to create the Creator? This is a mystery much greater than the sequence within the chicken or egg controversy. Maybe in the terms of that great warlord, Donald Rumsfeld, the answer to that mystery is unknowable.
The religions of the world describe our provenance in various ways …usually with a direct relationship to the respective religion’s dogma. Science and Religion are frequently in direct conflict on the origin of the universe, the derivation of our species, the evolution of animal and plant life on the earth and the possibilities of life elsewhere.
The origin of life remains a mystery …the scientist would argue evolution from the microbic while the religious argue creation in God’s own image.
Science bases its findings on empirical data, on observation of evolvement in plant and other species over time …the visible, the repeatable experiment.
The religious place their chips on the literature of the Bible, the Quran, the Tanakh, Bhagavad Gita (Bhagavadgiitaa) other religious publications, learned authors, practitioners, and academics …the power of the faithful.
The mystery of us all, our planet, our universe …will it ever be explained? Is it explainable. Could we believe the explanation? The religions would have us believe that if we follow their respective teachings, our reward will follow in the afterlife …all will be explained.
For me, I will continue to trust that a superior intelligence (God, if you like) has a handle on all that we do, sees us as individual human beings (souls or other identifiers), treats us fairly, either gives us an eternal place in the Cosmos, Heavens above, Hell below, or not. I doubt that performing to the norms of one or another religious doctrine while on earth matters much to our prospects for eternity. Organizing into one or the other earthly religious “unions” seems an affront to an all-seeing super intelligence. I don’t think that I will go there.
When politicians claim their great faith in their religious beliefs, I can only sigh and doubt that their faith will do much in helping them to perform their governing duties. Certainly, it will be of little benefit to us, the governed.