“Will God survive Science?”
This was the question author Dan Brown posed during an interview on a Dallas-Fort Worth radio station on the morning of October 5. He cited the fact that understanding oceanic science replaced the ancient mythology of Poseidon.
Dan Brown is the renowned author who used his bestseller, “The Da Vinci Code”, to explore the idea that Jesus Christ married Mary Magdalen, who bore his child, leaving a legacy of DNA from the Son of God.
His latest book, released on October 3, titled “Origin”, challenges religious beliefs regarding Creation. Protagonist Robert Langdon wrestles with his unfamiliarity of the modern architecture movement as he explores famous Spanish art museums for clues to this latest theory of humanism.
In his most recent work, Brown introduces his readers to the genius of Catalan architect, Antoni Gaudi (1852-1926). Danger, mystery, and intrigue unfold as clues are revealed in his current challenge to traditional religious doctrine.
While Dan Brown testifies that he is “absolutely not” anti-Catholic, he confesses his belief that “our planet would be absolutely fine without religion” and feels that “we are evolving in that direction”.
Would we be fine? What would our world look like without the trappings of faith? Is it religion that inspires, promotes and sustains morality and survival on earth? The fact that there are agnostics and atheists who lead healthy, productive, generous, moral lives would support Brown’s theory.
His claim that “all the gods fall”, and his prediction that the gods of today will meet the same “fate” presumes that the latest “god” – Science – will deal the death blow to Religion.
The Evolution of Faith
I must confess that I, too, have “evolved” in Faith. I also searched Science for the definitive existential answers. I discovered that Physics confirms many of the observations and philosophies of Faith and Religion. Renowned practical and theoretical physicists of the early 20th century “illuminated” the Truth of traditional mythology. In “How Quantum Physics Proves God’s Existence”, Beliefnet.com published an “enlightening” article that includes the following scientific confirmation:
Quantum physics defines that everything is made up of little bits, but what is the force holding the quanta particles, atoms and molecules together? The answer is LIGHT. Light keeps electrons tied to the nuclei of atoms, and atoms tied together to make molecules and objects. All forms of matter are actually made up of solidified light. Here we find our second Biblical evidence of God’s perfect design in the creation of this world, “Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw the light was good.” (Genesis 1: 3-4, NLT)
Perhaps Colossians 1:16,17 states the Truth of Physics most succinctly:
For in Him all things were created, things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities. All things were created through Him and for Him. 17 He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.
Yet, I also agree with Dan Brown’s theory that mankind is evolving with regard to Religion. There will always be new, culturally and historically relevant mythologies to explain the unexplainable. Technology will certainly play a part. The word “science” merely means “study”. We should study origins. Cosmology and ontology are valuable sciences that can inspire meaningful understanding and motivation.
“Art is the proper task of life.” – Friedrich Nietzsche
Ironically, the very settings of Dan Brown’s books betray the idea that our planet would be “absolutely fine without religion”. Every one of his books reveals and revels in art. Would we be “fine” without the Muse of Art? Perhaps. Would we want to do without it? I doubt it.
Religion, like Art, brings beauty, purpose, mystery, and richness to humanity. (And, in Dan Brown’s case, lucrative book deals.)
Science is not a replacement for Religion and Faith. It is merely one of the many tools we employ to gain a deeper appreciation of the Greatest Mystery of all.
Religion is the Art of Faith.