A bridge over a beautiful waterfall

A bridge over a beautiful waterfall
Nature brings magic

Monday, July 1, 2013

Monday Maundering - Religion vs. Science

I got into a couple interesting conversations this past week and it got me thinking. I am not a religious person by inclination. I believe that spirituality comes from within, not without. I believe that people choose their own paths in life, not that they were predestined to do anything. I believe people have free choice and those choices are inspired only by their own minds, not by any outward influence save that of their environment, upbringing, and mental state.

One of the conversations I got into was regarding Adam and Eve. If you think about it, Adam and Eve were the first humans. They had at least two sons. We all know the story of Cain and Abel. So...who was Cain copulating with when he produced his children? Adam and Eve were the only people on the planet, other than their sons. But Genesis tells us Cain found other people. So were there other Gardens of Eden? Other people like Adam and Eve? Where did these other people come from? Adam and Eve had other children. Who did those children marry to produce their children which ultimately led to the population of the world?

What about when the flood wiped out humanity, except for Noah and his family? How did we avoid inbreeding irregularities when the children of his children only had each other to marry? How did humanity get to the point it is today without the host of problems you see in families too closely related? How did we end up with so many varyingly different peoples if we're all descended from the same stock?

I found no answers to my questions.

My second question revolved around how science has shown that we did evolve and change as we spread out over the world. It has also tried to prove how the universe was created, and has done a good job of it. Where is god in all of this? If he created the world in seven days, where did the dinosaurs come in? Where did the neanderthal and the other primitive lives that were found to exist prior to us come from?

No one can answer these questions for me. I find myself questioning a lot of the beliefs I grew up with lately, and would love to hear some insight from others.

1 comment:

  1. This reminds me of something I posted on my own blog a while back on this topic.

    To my mind, the conflict between science and religion comes when people try to make religion/mythos work literally and make science work metaphorically. Hence the Adam and Eve example. In the story, they are the first -- but not the only -- people. Their names also mean "man" and "woman." So they are both individual characters in the story, and allegories for the human race. Every myth, parable, story, and history in religion has another meaning under the literal. Stopping at the literal inevitably creates misunderstanding of the truth that the story was meant to tell. In the Adam and Eve case, it's an origin story, a morality tale, and a lament of lost innocence. There is also more than one origin story in the Bible; The Towel of Babel is another one.

    Science lets you explore the literal, real world in fantastic detail. For some reason, we place more value on the literal and the real than we do on the mythical and the imagination. What has more power over our minds, in the end? Myth or reality? When does reality become myth, or vice versa?

    What's our place in it all? is the question that science and religion both seek to answer. They just do it in different ways. It's like if you do two different experiments, you get two different results. The fact that you get two results doesn't invalidate either or both. It just means that the results of each experiment are true for that experiment.

    That was probably more "insight" than you were looking for, lol.