There are some fantastic stories in the books of the Abrahamic faiths that as a kid I was enamored with but as an adult I become a lot skeptical about.
I mean, come on, the Red Sea just parting for Moses? Yeah, that doesn’t wash. The entire planet flooded, and only Noah and his ark full of humans and animals surviving? The world created in just 6 days? I rather believe William Jennings Bryan’s theory in the Scopes Monkey trial that a day back in biblical times could have lasted millions of years.
But, while I am willing to accept the Bible as a book of stories narrated by Mathew, Mark, Luke and John, there are others who treat it as the literal word of God, which is the absolute truth and cannot be questioned.
They constantly struggle to bend and twist new scientific discovery and fact so that it fits with the word of God, even though it is quite obvious the Book of Genesis is a story that cannot possibly be taken literally. Am I to believe that the only two humans on Earth were Adam and Eve? That’s it. And they had two sons, Cain and Abel. Yep…those were the only humans on Earth because God created them first. Yep. Huh. Well…then who did Cain and Abel marry? Apes? Yes, look right here, the book says they had wives. Hmmmm. Well I digress.
To those who believe in the absolute truth of Creationism, the Darwin theory is heresy of the worst kind. For years, they have struggled to implement a return to Creationism and now they found a fancy name for it… the Intelligent Design Theory. And our Georgie been into fancy words and all is advancing their cause to have it taught besides science curriculum. Sort of an alternative… What the …is the school system now a madrassa, or divinity school?
The Intelligent Design theory is not scientifically proven, for it cannot be scientifically proven. How do you prove that God exists? You cannot. Instead, the theory attempts to burrow holes in Natural Selection. A wingnut guy I encountered recently told me that Darwinism cannot explain the explosion in life during the Pre-Cambrian period since evolution depends upon the slow modification of the fittest species over millennia to better adapt them to their environment. He says to me, “what say you to that?” I say, “I don’t know.” He says, “That’s right, because God is the answer. He caused that explosion of life.”
My problem with teaching Intelligent Design, as an alternative to science is that it is not science. It does not seek to prove anything. It does not seek to explain anything. As such it isn’t a scientific theory and it isn’t an alternative to natural selection or any other scientific theory. Science always seeks to discover “how.” ID does not seek to discover “how.” It wants to tell us “why.” That mindset belongs in a religious class not a science setting.
If we teach kids in a science class that the universe came to be as a result of intelligent design, what is the next step? We cannot ask God how he designed it. So we give up on understanding. We give up on knowledge. And perhaps that is what the absolute believers want us to do. Obviously, the more science learns and advances, the more allegorical the literal translation of religious texts becomes.
The point that absolute believers have to get into their heads is that science is not the enemy of God. Science does not seek to disprove the word of the Lord. Science seeks to explain the world. To tell us how it works. If you are a believer in the glory of God, (I count myself as one) then God can always be the reason why, but never how, for then you shut the door to all knowledge.