Friday, March 2

Faith and Science

I found myself tonight at MIT. I got sucked into the intellectual side of things, I suppose, though I must say the most appealing part of the place to me was the lovely view of the river. Ah yes, AND the stimulating environment. Ian Hutchinson gave a lovely discourse on the rationalization of faith and science and whether or not they are at odds or not. My date and I concluded that science is a particular area of focus of the larger whole that is religion--that is to say, science is a way of coming to know truth, and much truth can be had by observing things as they are and through repeatable demonstrations that they are so. However, as Emma Darwin wrote to remind her husband Charles, "May not the habit in scientific pursuits of believing nothing till it is proved, influence your mind too much in other things which cannot be proved in the same way, & which if true are likely to be above our comprehension." Or in my words, there are many ways of proving things, not all of which are perceived by the area of our mind that conceives of things along a logical continuum. In fact, as I learned in the Museum of Science last week, one of the largest pieces of our brains is the part that is concerned with things moral, ethical, and religious. It is, in fact, about three times the size of the logical and analytical parts of our brains. So, then, we are meant to observe things as they are, scientifically, as they were, historically, and meant to find out how things will be through other faculties--things which, though they may perhaps not be "proved in the same way," yet they can be felt to "ring true," and to "have a certain authority," to borrow from Professor Hutchinson. And so I conclude again, because of things I have felt even again tonight, that not all things are known, but they can be, based on the laws and the grace of the Lawgiver.

Whew. That's what a night at MIT will do to you.