All things being equal: a contrast between celibacy and sterilization

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I recently read a provoking article in the Metro newspaper, often found scattered about in our local buses and subway transit system. It is entitled “The mother of all double standards,” and it rallies against the medical system which it accuses of offering permanent sterilization for men more readily than for woman.

 

We are introduced to Andy Prosserman who, though he never got a vasectomy in his 20’s because he “knew that this would be irresponsible,” did in fact get one at the age of 30. While I was under the impression that the journey of self-knowledge takes a lifetime, apparently 30 was enough.

 

In lieu of having kids, Prosserman is seen posing, ready for his new life of liberty and indulgence: in one frame of a six part montage he is seen holding a bottle of Glenlivet 12 year old scotch, in another a Nintendo controller, and in yet another his passport.

 

When I looked at these images of what must be at least in part the ideal life of Prosserman, I could not help but be overwhelmed by a sense of deep regret for this man, for the trade that he has made.

 

My reaction can be explained by another incredible social phenomenon.

 

Do you ever wonder why Isis has managed to capture the imagination of so many youth?

 

It is because we live in a world that tells us that scotch and video games, in other words unlimited personal indulgence, is the pinnacle of our existence.

 

Nothing could be further from the truth.

 

If someone told me that the meaning of my life was to stuff my proverbial gullet with as many pleasures as humanly possible before I died, I would go join Isis too. At least they understand sacrifice on some level, though they have a very twisted idea of what that means. At least they understand what it means to serve a higher cause, even though what they call a higher cause is actually darkness and death.

 

Our brothers and sisters join Isis because at least in the sands of the middle east, or even within the borders of their own countries, these young souls looking for meaning can die for something, because even the illusion of a meaningful sacrifice is more tantalizing than the alternative.

 

Humanity is made in such a way so that our own gift of self to the point of self-sacrifice is the very pinnacle of our existence.

 

It is said that Jesus came, not to be served, but to serve.

 

Meanwhile, Prosserman is going to find at the bottom of his scotch bottle his own emptiness looking up at him. One day he will ask himself, “Surely there has got to be more than this.”

 

What is disturbing is that the author of the article, Sofi Papamarko, doesn’t give any concern whatsoever for the wellbeing and the interior life of these individuals. She does not so much as ask as to whether permanently destroying the body’s capacity to produce life is questionable.

 

Her only concern: equal access for men and women.

 

Think about what happens to a society that favours equal rights, or anything for that matter, over a love and appreciation of life.

 

In The Gospel of Life by Pope John Paul II, it is pointed at that “in the Old Testament, sterility is dreaded as a curse, while numerous offspring are viewed as a blessing.” (44) Nothing is more natural for living breathing beings than to bring life into this world, to continue their existence through their progeny.

 

From the eyes of this ancient Jewish people, we are all clamouring over one another to have equal access to a curse.

 

No one seems to care, just so long as access is equal.

 

Undoubtedly, at this point, someone will remind me that the majority of Catholic priests (there are some married Catholic priests) and all Catholic religious live celibately, which is to say they do not marry, nor have sex, nor have kids.

 

The first difference between sterilization and celibacy is sex.

Sterilization in modern western society has one purpose: to be able to have sex while undermining its natural result, which is children. They want the maximum pleasure, with the least responsibility. Turning the pursuit and goal of sex into pleasure, however, naturally cheapens it and makes it into yet another item for consumption. Thus, the love within flees before an ever greedy appetite for personal gratification, at no cost.

 

Celibacy, on the other hand, is focused towards giving life. A priest or religious does not renounce marriage, and by consequence sex and children, because they fear responsibility, or because “they know what they want.” They do it because they want to dedicate their lives in the deepest way possible to the glory of Christ, which brings life in the fullest sense possible.

 

Take the priesthood as an example:

 

The man who does not have the desire to be a father, should never be a priest.

 

For a priest becomes the father of all, the caretaker and the intercessor for every soul. If he lives out his vocation, he gives up the luxury of caring about himself, and learns to die daily for those he loves.

 

Likewise, I was once told that to become a contemplative monk in order to flee the chaos of the world was a terrible reason, and a false one. Those brave monks and nuns live cloistered lives so that their life may bring fruit in the world via their heartfelt prayers to the Divine who participates in all life.

 

The difference is enormous.

 

Prosserman sterilized himself so he could he could pleasure himself; celibate priests, monks, and nuns refrain from the beautiful earthly pleasures of marriage and children in order to sacrifice themselves for the benefit of others.

 

The former sees only himself, while the latter see everyone at once.

 

What greater form of equality is there than to see others before myself?

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God in Nature, God in Church

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Few experiences beat the serenity and peace found in a long hike up a mountain. There is just something incredible about being physically disconnected from all the bustle, noise, stress, and on-goings of city life. The crisp air, the sounds of nature, the fresh smells. Something here speaks to a very fundamental place in humanity.
 

I reflect on this reality often when I am confronted with a common denunciation of organized religion: nature is my church, I go there to worship God.
 

It is true that the prophets were often drawn to the wilderness, to the high places. Christ Himself often sought refuge in the stillness of secluded and isolated locations in the desert and elsewhere. Still, I have to ask myself, can nature replace Church?
 

I see two helpful roads for this discussion. The first being what really lies at the heart of this argument (or more accurately at the heart of its supporters), and the second addressing what we have to gain by worshiping in common.
 

I hit a wall very quickly when I try to see the reason in this refusal of Sunday worship: since when was it an either or equation?
 

Plenty of my fellow Christians love the outdoors and go there often. At the same time, they share a devoted passion for liturgy and communal worship. The idea of “worshiping in nature,” really has nothing to do with nature at all, but a distaste for what happens in a Church.
 

Often I get the impression that what these folks mean by “worship” is something rather similar to enjoy. To enjoy something is for the individual only, and not for God. To worship God is to give all reverence and glory to Him who created it, and that is an external action. It requires effort and acknowledgment.
 

The heart of the matter simply remains that if we really wish to worship God, then we worship Him according to the means He provided for our own good. The emphasis is not on where and how I want to worship, but precisely upon God’s preference and desire.
 

This is to love God.
 

I am sure there are many causes for this hesitancy or out-right refusal to worship in community.
 

One perhaps being a general mistrust of others. This may either be a unhindered distaste for humankind in general stemming from past wounds and rejections, or perhaps just an inability to express something intimate, my relationship with God, in the presence of the community.
 

Another reason could be associated with the anxiety of being seen in a place of worship, the fear of being associated with “them,” the church going types. Being a believer is increasingly becoming a counter-cultural act, and a rather unpopular one at that.
 

In any case, the mentality that I can go it on my own, without the fraternal aid and support of the community is folly, and if left unchecked, it leads to spiritual ruin. For no person is wise enough to travel the long and arduous path to God alone. There are simply too many pitfalls, traps, and snares which await the sincere believer.
 

We need each other.
 

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In Mere Christianity C.S. Lewis articulates the idea very well: “God can show Himself as He really is only to real men. And that means not simply to men who are individually good, but to men who are united together in a body, loving one another, helping one another, showing Him to one another. For that is what God meant humanity to be like; like players in one band, or organs in one body.”
 

The second downfall of the notion of worshiping in nature exclusively is the immense loss of missing out on communal worship.
 

Anyone who has played in a well practiced and unified band knows that this experience can be nearly mystical. The combined and harmonized efforts of the group creates a whole that is far greater than the sum of its parts. From this experience is created incredible music.
 

It is also true for worship, and the fruits of communal worship is truly mystical.
 

As Lewis points out, not only is communal worship better, it is also exactly what we were created for. In the Catholic tradition, even the most secluded hermit prays in communion with all the faithful using prayers which match exactly those of the faithful worldwide. In addition, they attend if at all possible a communal Sunday worship with their brothers or sisters.
 

They understand always that they leave the world specifically to be united to it, and to pray for it, with a greater fervency and intensity.
 

My point being that they are never separate, or on their own.
 

This is never the feeling I get from those who follow the idea of worship in nature.
 

They most often strike me as those lacking the energy and spirit of charity towards neighbour. They are often the types to be judgmental of all the failings of church leaders or those who attend, while not seeing their own.
 

A priest once told me of an exchange he had with a man on the street who said to him, “Why would I go to church, it’s full of hypocrites!” He immediately replied, “Yup, and we’ve got room for one more.”
 

It is true that every church community has its wounds, its errors, its failings. After all a church community is a family. Should we expect anything different from a family?
 

If it is not the communal aspect of church, the other which can often turn people off, especially since the social upheaval of the sixties, is the structure and order of the Church. The dogmas, the rules, the hierarchy, etc.
 

C.S. Lewis recalls an experience where he was giving a talk on theology and “an old, hard-bitten officer got up and said, ‘I’ve no use for all this stuff. But, mind you, I’m a religious man too. I know there’s a God. I’ve felt Him: out alone in the desert at night: the tremendous mystery. And that’s just why I don’t believe all your neat little dogmas and formulas about Him. To anyone who’s met the real thing they all seem so petty and pedantic and unreal!’”
 

Lewis continues to explain that this man had a good point. That to go from this real experience to the dogmas was akin to “turning from something real to something less real.” Like going from a view of the ocean itself, to a map. “Turning from real waves to a bit of coloured paper.”
 

However, he finishes by making the point that the map, though not as real, contains thousands of combined experiences coming from thousands of different people. That this map, which is not the thing itself, does tell us how to navigate the dangerous ocean safely.
 

“The doctrines are not God.” They are, however, a guide to reach our destination safely.
 

He drives his point home: “You see, what happened to that man in the desert may have been real, and was certainly exciting, but nothing comes of it. It leads nowhere. There is nothing to do about it. In fact, that is just why a vague religion—all about feeling God in nature, and so on—is so attractive. It is all thrills and no work…”
 

Without the work to which Lewis refers, we also fail to obtain the fruits: supernatural charity, love, and perseverance in all kinds of difficulties and evils.
 

We need each other, we need the map.
 

In the end we work to accomplish here what we hope to discover in heaven. Heaven is a community of persons, of love. I don’t see any reason why we shouldn’t work to accomplish that goal right here and now.

Perennial Philosophy: Are All Religions Guiding us to the Same Destination?

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Some ideas sound great but don’t work in reality.
 

Wouldn’t it be great if all religions pointed towards the same truth?
 

Is it possible, taking all religions in existence today as they are now, that this statement could be taken as true?
 

I find the idea hard to reconcile, if not impossible.
 

One man likened all the different religions in the world to a group of blind men all feeling a different part of the same elephant and describing these parts accurately, therefore far differently, despite the fact that they all had the same underlying source.
 

It sounds a bit like the great unifying theory which Einstein sought after: to put these seemingly incongruous parts into a neat and unified whole.
 

The fundamental flaw of the elephant argument is this: the existence of an elephant ear does not negate the existence of the tail.
 

Likewise the existence of the tail does not negate the existence of the trunk, and so on. Each blind man could describe his part of the elephant without denying the existence of the others.
 

Religions claims are not like this.
 

Their ideologies are, in the fullest sense of the word, contradictory.
 

One claims there is only one God and that no others exist, while some religions claim the existence of multiple gods.
 

Many religions claim that to follow anything different is to cause one’s damnation, and others state that we need not worry about death for every time we will come back for a second, third, and fourth chance, ad infinitum.
 

The bottom line is: these ideas of truth cannot co-exist, they cannot all be right.
 

Now I can say with certainty that there is a common human hunger that fuels the vast majority of all religious searching. This hunger, I believe, is the underlying truly universal principle in this equation. I must recognize that all religions are invariably products of the same source, though their contents are not equal.
 

If we acknowledge that all religions are pointing to the same truth, even though they contradict one another, then we must assume that some contain errors. If we acknowledge the existence of errors then we must also acknowledge the existence of the truth they contradict.
 

So the greatest question of all is not how can we reconcile our differences and accept every religion equally, rather how can we discern which religion contains the truth?
 

Only by answering this question will true fruit be drawn from such a perplexing tree.
 

Can the answer be known with certainty?
 

Yes.
 

How do I know when someone loves me?
 

It is the moment when I realise that they know me almost as well as I know myself.
 

Perhaps they indicate this with the perfect gift, or with a healing gesture that gives aid where I didn’t realise I needed it. Somehow, somewhere they communicate their love.
 

It is by this qualification (in combination with others) that I assert that God is not only knowable, but we can discern even His personality. One quality of which is His love.
 

I will go even a step further and state that the Catholic Church, the body of Christ, contains the Truth which our hearts hunger for and that this spiritual body is the fullest expression of God’s life within us.
 

Truth is a Person who awakens, enlivens, and beautifies every mind and heart that will accept Him.
 

My only supporting argument for my claim is the fire which burns in my heart, the vibrant life which pours out from my adherence to the Church’s principles, sacraments, and community.
 

All Christians come to the realisation sooner or later that their word is not good enough. I will take it as no surprise if any of my readers refuse to take my claims to heart based upon my words alone.
 

However, compelling me from within is the obligation of Truth.
 

Each human being is individually responsible to hunt out honestly what is, and what is not.
 

Even this pursuit, as with every worthwhile adventure, requires a leap of faith.
 

Someone reading this article who did not believe me but wanted to know more would have to trust me on at least one point: there is something in the universe worth knowing that they do not yet know.
 

I could repeat a thousand times that to be in communion with Jesus Christ is more valuable, more satisfying, more joyful than every pleasurable experience I have had combined.
 

However, my claim is easy to dismiss.
 

I would ask any doubtful person just this one question: If you had found something that truly achieved everything I have just claimed, wouldn’t you too be eager to share the news of this beautiful gift?
 

Wouldn’t it be supremely selfish to keep this knowledge hidden?
 

To conclude, I must reassert that all religions are not just different hands pointing to the same door. They are not different paths leading up the same mountain.
 

They are a multifaceted intersection departing and heading in different directions. Some lead to ruin, and others to life.
 

Truth can be known and there is no greater joy to not only know Truth, but to live it out as well.

Belief (Part 2 of 3): Belief and Happiness

The questions begs asking: Why can’t people just believe whatever makes them happy?
 

We live in a time where the notion of truth is treated like a fancy. Some like it, others do not, who really cares?
 

There is something wholly silly about not believing what is true simply because I fancy to believe in something different. Perhaps this view can be forgiven, for knowing what is true is not always simple and straightforward.
 

The question remains, if you knew what was true, beyond a doubt, would you not be inclined to believe it no matter how contrary to your own current beliefs it was?
 

If your answer to that question is no, I would find that profoundly curious. If your answer is yes, this bodes well, for this discussion may continue.
 

We are all forced to believe in the existence of a table we’ve just walked into.
 

The person who claims that the table does not exist will only walk into it again, causing no small discomfort.
 

Each person may believe that the table exists or not: why couldn’t they hold this belief so long as they are happy? I cannot help but suggest: who cares what people want to believe, we can all recognize that the table does exist.
 

It is plain that fact is not a matter of opinion. It never has been and it never will be.
 

No amount of forceful mental exertion will ever alter a fact.
 

I will also go one full step further and say that knowing truth is fundamentally a profound and joyful experience, and likewise knowing lies is tragic.
 

The reason people cannot just believe what they want so long as it makes them happy is that the truth sets us free, and lies do not.
 

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In order to believe that all people firm in their beliefs are happy requires that we never dig any deeper than the surface level of things.
 

For the person who dares to venture deeper into the hearts, the wounds, the psyche of the everyday person, they will find great sorrow and confusion mixed alongside joys and love. After a little further experience they will discover that some have far more pain than joy, and others far more love than confusion.
 

If you go into an intense discussion with someone like a neo-Nazi who still believes that the non-Aryans are to be exterminated, you will find great hatred being the source of this lie. This person will no doubt claim they have the truth and that this truth has set them free. It is simple to recognize that they have been sold a lie and that this lie has poisoned their reason.
 

As a direct result his joy will be diminished, his love decrepit, and everything that could hold meaning will be lost to him.
 

That is an extreme example but one important reality cannot be ignored:
In as much as our beliefs are based on lies we will discover pain and confusion.
In as much as our beliefs are based on truths, we will discover, inevitably, peace and joy.
 

So you can see, it is always in our best interest to embrace truth and not lies.
 

Why then has our culture, or society, abandoned truth and chosen personal whim instead?
 

Here is a complicated question that is not easy to answer.
 

I argue that we all still truly want truth, we’ve just become jaded to the multiplicity of claims in the world.
 

Which one of us has not been deceived at one time or another?
 

This is a painful experience which makes us more hesitant to trust again. It seems a universal mistrust in anything not proven in a laboratory has overcome our ability for clear thinking.
 

Some may argue that this is just fine, but I argue that those who ignore all truth not discovered within the scientific method will inevitably miss the most profound, joyful, enlightening, and meaningful moments life has to offer.
 

They are free to encourage their own willful ignorance of all else there is to know, but I strongly recommend a different course of action.

Washing Dishes, Floors, and Feet

As I watch with apprehension the progressive Russian invasion of Crimea in the Ukraine, it moves my heart to journey inwards to gaze upon my own growth and failings. As we rest precipitously on the edge of another World War there hasn’t been a time more needful of the personal internal transformation that fosters love, peace, and respect.

 

Have you ever stared at a puzzle for hours, but couldn’t figure it out?

 

It is usually not until we take a break, return to the puzzle, and voila, the answer just pops out. It was there all along, but suddenly, as though emerging from the paper, the solution presents itself. It was in a similar fashion that the fogginess of my own egocentrism cleared away, and I began to see my roommates in a greater depth of understanding and love. I started my friendship with these men somewhat estranged because of ideological differences, but over time the flaws of this approach have become apparent and I have come to see my brothers without the distortion of our differences, but in clarity alongside compassion. I see more clearly their personhood, dignity, and beauty, before all else.

 

file00040835889Ideology and religious belief has been the starting point of discord during humanity’s entire recorded history. This is not a condemnation of these necessary acts of the human will, but the basis of a more fundamental question: what is the true root of our conflict? Are some correct when they state that religion is a plague of the modern man’s mind, that it only fuels hatred of those who do not agree? Are strong political views only another reason for us to draw our weapons and re-enact the atrocities witnessed over the last century and further? They do not have to be.

 

Radical atheism tells us that religion breeds separation and absurdity, all the while fueling its own campaign of intolerance toward religious believers in the marketplace, the social sphere, and the educational system. Marx in his effort to spread communism called religion the “opium of the people;” the suffering caused by his followers, both throughout the past and continuing up until the present, has been so gruesome and comprehensive that it would be impossible to describe it all accurately in words. Many of those who claim to rule with God’s authority have done things so vile we can only shake our heads and ask, why? Fundamentalist Islam is the most poignant modern example. Still more, we have the ongoing list of violence, war, and death as a result of the jostling of different political factions vying for power, freedom, land, resources, and sometimes just plain vanity. The conflict between Russia and the Ukraine highlights this problem with great urgency.

 

So it appears that no matter which stance you take, you can find someone who used those beliefs for hatred. Is it best then to be non-committal? Is the only safe path to cast your vote in no direction, to live as an isolationist? Many simply dig their heads in the sand, give up, and spend their time in frivolous pursuits, but this is not what the human person is being called to.

 

Whether it be political, religious, artistic, or intellectual passion, to live our lives immersed in the pursuit of truth, beauty, and compassion, is the heart of what the human person longs for.

 

Passion can be unpredictable, can make us blurt things out we wish we never said, can cause us to take risks that lead to our embarrassment or rejection. Just as this is true, without passion there would be no great literature, no Micheangelos, no Mother Teresas, no Picassos, and no feminism or political change. The very advent of democracy in ancient Athens would never have come to pass without the flames of the desire for change. Neither passion nor belief can be cast aside, even though they may cause conflict, because they are not the problem: the perversion of these good things is what turns us upon one another.

 

The things in life which are the most beautiful, when corrupted, can become the most ugly. Passion ordered towards the good is glorious and inspiring, but when our passions become distorted and are used for evil, they become the most perverse thing of all. This raises one final and very important question: if passions can be perverted, how do we prevent it from happening?

 

One perplexing and uncomfortable word: humility.

 

God shows us the example of what humility is. Jesus, the Son of God, He who desires our acceptance, invites us so that we might come to understand Him. God’s humility is truly awesome. It defies human reason and logic about hierarchy and service.

 

The most powerful example of God’s gift to us is revealed when Christ washes the feet of the disciples. Peter, in understanding the amazing reversal of assumptions about relationships, protests, “Is it for You to wash my feet?” Again he attempts to stop Jesus saying, “I will never let You wash my feet.”

To this Jesus replies, “If I do not wash your feet, it means you have no companionship with Me.”

Peter understands, in part, and he replies, “…then not only my feet, but my hands and head as well.”

 

Humility means seeing the true source of our talents, capacities, and strengths. It means directing our talents towards washing the feet of our brothers and sisters. Any ideology or religious belief, if subjected to the one fundamental condition that it must be used to assist and serve the other, will become perfected through love and that which is lacking within it, will inevitably be cast aside. When our gifts are used for our own ends, for our own selfish desires, for our pursuit of pleasure or power, then passion becomes a slave master, driving us further from peace and truth.

 

Jesus’ response is initially perplexing, but holds profound meaning. It bears repeating: “If I do not wash your feet, it means you have no companionship with me.” The path to true humility means first having our feet cleansed by the King of the Universe. Only by allowing God to see our faults, to touch our feet, to be in contact with our skin, can we come to know the profound humility that pierces and overcomes all selfish desire.

 

It burdens my heart when I think of all the times I’ve used my knowledge, skills, or beliefs as weapons wielded against my roommates. Too often has this been the case, and in doing so I’ve made one clear statement: You wash my feet.

 

I am blessed always by the presence of my roommates. They have shown me time and time again the beauty which lies within them. They have taught me to grow, to be a stronger, bolder man; in effect, they have shown me, one step further, how to love with my whole heart. Most important of all, they have revealed to me the importance and dignity of every human being regardless of their ideological or religious background. Truly, we are human first, and then we act. Our dignity, beauty, and being is primary; this must be recognized if love is to permeate our actions and beliefs.

 

Atheism and Science: Oil and Water

The scientist that tries to refute religious phenomena based on their studies is the same as a religious person who tries to refute science based on their faith, they are both foolish.” – Rabbi Skorka

 

I’ve decided to begin a series of articles critiquing the arguments of atheism.

I do not intend to prove or disprove God’s existence or even to assert my own beliefs, but through argument show the logical inconsistencies of modern atheistic reasoning. Using the definitions of science, atheism, and the truth I will come to my point: Atheists cannot use science as an authority in their argument against the existence of God, and if they do, they will mar the name of good science.

What is science and what are it’s boundaries?

Science is a method and means to acquiring information about the universe. We use this tool to deepen our understanding of the known world and to assist humanity in it’s journey. According to Scott Lilienfeld et al. theories and information can be classified under three possible categories: authentic science, pseudo-science (erroneous but seemingly scientific information), or metaphysical claims. The authors continue that “it’s essential to distinguish scientific claims from metaphysical claims: assertions about the world that we cannot test” (Lilienfeld 11). They give us examples of metaphysical claims: “assertions about the existence of God, the soul, and the afterlife” (Lilienfeld 11). It repeats shortly after that “testable claims fall within the province of science; untestable claims don’t” (pg. 11). We get a clear picture of what science is, and what science is not.

Everything that cannot be tested, or cannot be falsified, is unconsidered by scientific thought. Areas that are unconsidered by science include love, art, beauty, God, literature, humour, creativity, morality, and a multitude more. A full list would be enormous. For example, you can study how a human brain reacts to something beautiful, but not what beauty is. Science can tell us that animals suffer, but it can’t tell us if using animals in experiments to find a cure for cancer is right or wrong.

What is atheism and what do atheists believe?

Oxford dictionary defines atheism as “disbelief or lack of belief in the existence of God or gods.” Pretty straight forward, atheists do not believe in God. A list taken from wikipedia of atheists arguments against theism include “a lack of empirical evidence,the problem of evil, the argument from inconsistent revelations, rejection of concepts which cannot be falsified, and the argument from nonbelief”. None of these arguments contain evidence to show God’s non-existence, but are all philisophical arguments pointing to the unlikelihood of God’s existence. There is no experiment an atheist can point to, and never will be, that has shown that God doesn’t exist or cannot exist.

Atheism and Science are separate entities.

To mix theses two separate systems is a logical error. Science, as I stated above, cannot comment on metaphysical claims, for example, the existence of God. Atheism makes statements on the existence of God. Therefore, atheism and science are related to incompatible material. If you wouldn’t trust a mathematician, with no other training, to operate on your brain, then don’t trust atheism to tell you scientific fact. If you agree with the arguments of atheism, then that is your choice, but don’t confuse those arguments for what they are not. Science is the study of observable or testable phenomenon, atheism is a belief system which argues that God does not exist.

The truth, no matter how unlikely, is still the truth. Science knows this best.

Atheists have seen their blunder and the language they use has changed. All recent comments I’ve heard from atheists using science as their backing all use the same argument type: God’s existence is highly unlikely. Imagine trying to teach someone in the 13th century string theory or the modern understanding of quantum physics. That person would say you had lost your mind and they would put you in an institution. Quantum mechanics is the most strange and bizarre reality you could find at the base of our existence. Would the man from the 13th century find your explanation likely? Of course he wouldn’t, it’s so completely outlandish. Yet, it is commonly accepted by modern scientists. To have rejected the notion of quantum mechanics due to it’s unlikelihood would have been a scientific blunder.

My point is this, we cannot reject something completely because we deem that it is unlikely. Such thinking is not scientific and it is not proper skepticism either. To be truly skeptical is to question all theories, but to remain open to all unproven claims as well. Atheism’s jump to the non-existence of God is a leap of faith. In order to make such a conclusion requires the believer to cross past the boundaries of fact and to make an educated guess, at best.

To conclude my argument I wish to affirm that if atheism continues to use the name of science to propagate its owns beliefs, the name of science will be tarnished in the process. Science is a beautiful and necessary authority in our society and global community. I support it whole heartedly, but I also recognize it for what it is, and what it is not. I also promote free thought, choice and critical thinking, but if these skills are to reach their full potential, we must use them in conjunction with logical reasoning. Stretching the authority of science to comment on God’s existence is beyond it’s actual capacity. It is a disordered use of an otherwise magnificent tool.

 

In the words of Rabbi Skorka,

When science reaches it’s limits, man turns to the spiritual, to the existential experiences of centuries past. Science and religion are fields that work in parallel and should be talking to eachother.

  • Rabbi Skorka from “On Heaven and Earth.”