I am a Humanist. The thing I love most about the human race is its drive to constantly change and move forward. Sometimes we act without thinking, but it comes with the territory. We are curious and we need to answer every question. When one generation dies the next one carries on their work. We are explorers, problem solvers, and artists. We build communities, and for the most part we work toward becoming better people.
We have the unique ability to place ourselves in time. We not only know where we’ve been, we are always attempting to document it. We want to be remembered. This knowledge of where we are and where we have been also contributes to where we think we are going. It guides us as we set goals and find our way toward achieving those goals. What is possible? Anything.
If we can keep this thing going for another million years, where will we be? And for those lucky souls who exist in that time, what will they think of us? We will be the beginning. We will be a constant source of study, because this is where history first became visible in photos, sound, and video. Will they romanticize our world, or will they pity us?
We will never run out of questions. We have only scratched the surface of understanding everything that can be understood. Science lives by that. It will never matter if science is wrong, because it never stops asking itself if it is wrong. I think this is a very difficult concept for Christians to accept. That part of us that so desperately wants the answers can easily be lured into believing the answers have been found. We want to believe it because it satisfies our thirst for knowledge. Religion offers that.
Christians are so tuned in to the idea that science is god’s rival, they cannot see that science’s argument will always be stronger. Why? Because in the world of science, being wrong is okay. It’s necessary, even. You can disprove its claims again and again and science only becomes more truthful. Religion has no such luxury. If proven wrong it does not evolve, it goes into defense mode. It is an ancient scientific theory that found a foothold.
We need theories. It’s part of that drive to know more; the theory is the starting point from which we find our direction. We gather facts and run our tests to determine if the theory is right or how it should be modified. Sometimes we disagree along the way. Sometimes we fall in love with theories. We might ignore the bits of information that tell us to change course in our investigation, refusing to move forward until someone else follows it to a proper end conclusion for us. We might hold on even then.
The thing is, that end conclusion about where we come from and why? It may never resolve itself to satisfaction. So as science moves forward in its journey to prove and disprove the various theories, it may only be halfway there. Or ten percent. Who knows? But it will become more true over time. My own theory is that science will eventually leave god behind completely. But what if it proves the existence of an unfamiliar god? Then what?
In its own way religion is another beautiful part of humanity. God is a beautiful theory. He can also be a terrifying one. What humans choose to do with him can go either way, because that is our own nature. Everything a Christian knows about god came through a human interpretation of him. I like to think that if anything is worth believing in, it is us. The best of us persevere over time, with or without god. I do have faith in that.