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The Age of Godless Credulity

by PETER SMITH: Quadrant Online

That otherwise sensible people believe the planet is overheating, not to mention the many other fashionable improbables, confirms my view that alleged ‘science’ is stuffing with unadulterated hooey the space in people’s heads formerly occupied by religious belief

“Those who don’t believe in God will believe in anything,” is an apt epigram, no matter whether G.K. Chesterton coined it or something like it. From Chesterton to an Islamist is an unlikely leap. This fictional one is apropos. Here is Robert Rediger, president of the Islamic University of Paris-Sorbonne, in Michel Houellebecq’s novel Submission.

“At the end of the day, isn’t there something ridiculous about some puny creature, living on an anonymous planet, in a remote spur of an ordinary galaxy, standing up on his hind legs announcing, “God does not exist”?

Put aside whether, as Rediger says, it is “ridiculous.” The assertion that “God does not exist,” is an expression of what isn’t. By definition, it leaves open the question of what is. Men and women aren’t, on the whole, the secular and profane creatures that assertive atheists would like them to be. They search for meaning. This is where science seizes its chance.

The receding belief in God, specifically the Christian god, has led to the fall of biblically-bound priests and the corresponding rise of unconstrained and, as it turns out, overly-imaginative and publicity-seeking scientists. God is a superstition. The new godhead is pseudo-scientific speculations about the universe. These are lapped up by audiences starved of spirituality. This is not to say that God exists (though I personally have faith He does). It is to say that nature abhors a vacuum and that absent God all kinds of funny ideas fill the void.

As Rodney Stark eloquently sets out in The Victory of Reason, Christianity from its early centuries extolled the God-given human faculty of reason. Reason leads to the search for scientific truth. But, seldom do searches lead to enlightenment without a reference point. Read more of this important editorial at Quadrant Online