Saturday, April 07, 2007

Is There Still Room For Narratives?

Lately, I've been reading "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance". It's a great book and it's given me some things to think about. While I was reading it last night I was reminded of how I used to really enjoy reading about the Evolution/Creation debate, but have somewhere lost the desire to keep learning about it. It's not that I don't think it's important anymore because it is important in my mind. I think I may have lost the desire to read about this debate because both sides of the debate are so eager to remove the "science" from any sort of story or narrative.

The Evolutionists are so serious about doing "science" that they have discarded any sort of art or creativity in the process. The Creationists are so concerned with proving that God created the universe that they explain away his majesty with scientific principles. I still subscribe to "Young Earth Creation Science", but I just wish both sides would allow for a bit of creativity and an understanding that we will never know exactly how things unfolded in the beginning. Do we have to sacrifice the narratives for science? Will we ever appreciate the "what" without knowing the "why" or the "how"?

I realize there is a sort of paradox in having a science that allows for narratives, but can it be possible? I realize that science tries to be objective and replicable, but it seems to me that science, no matter how hard we try, will always be somewhat subjective in nature. All fields of science are based on basic assumptions about the world and the universe.

There is a very special sense in which materialism has more restrictions than spiritualism. Mr. McCabe thinks me a slave because I am not allowed to believe in determinism. I think Mr. McCabe a slave because he is not allowed to believe in fairies. But if we examine the two vetoes we shall see that his is really much more of a pure veto than mine. The Christian is quite free to believe that there is a considerable amount of settled order and inevitable development in the universe. But the materialist is not allowed to admit into his spotless machine the slightest speck of spiritualism or miracle. Poor Mr. McCabe is not allowed to retain even the tiniest imp, though it might be hiding in a pimpernel.

~ G.K. Chesterton (Orthodoxy)


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