In this chapter the old guy puts everyone into five groups or levels. Below is a quick summary:
- Self awareness
- Aware of others and trust the belief system that your raised in
- Aware that people can be wrong and may doubt your beliefs but continue in them anyway
- Believe that science is the measure of truth and are skeptical of people in the lower levels
- The Avatar- uses science as a belief system, realises that the brain is a delusion generator and that probability is expressed in Gods power and that God is rebuilding himself.
Science by definition I thought treated the universe as a closed system, and to say "God did it" to an experiment didn't really discover anything. Science rules out the possibilities of the supernatural, in order to discover more about the natural. And that is good.
What is a worry is when science is set up as the only source of truth, and anything that questions it is seen as a threat. The Council of Europe last month published a document saying that:
For some people the Creation, as a matter of religious belief, gives a meaning to life. Nevertheless, the Parliamentary Assembly is worried about the possible ill-effects of the spread of creationist ideas within our education systems and about the consequences for our democracies. If we are not careful, creationism could become a threat to human rights which are a key concern of the Council of Europe.
...Though more subtle in its presentation, the doctrine of intelligent design is no less dangerous.
Wow, I didn't know that the idea that God made the universe could threaten human rights. I also like this bit:
The teaching of all phenomena concerning evolution as a fundamental scientific theory is therefore crucial to the future of our societies and our democracies
Wow, the teaching of evolution is crucial to future societies and democracy. I wonder how societies in the past coped before they had the theory of evolution to help when deciding how nations are to be formed. So is it a democratic idea that we should only look after the strong and powerful as they are a better representation of our species and so therefore have more of a right to reproduce?
Science is good, but when held to be the absolute truth in all things, it is found wanting. Even the document I quote claims that the act of Creation is actually beyond the scope of Science:
Science provides irreplaceable training in intellectual rigour. It seeks not to explain “why things are” but to understand how they work.
In a debate that William Lane Craig has with an atheist Brian Edward, William says (starting from around the 27 minute mark) that the existence of the universe cries out for an explanation because science has found that the universe is not an uncaused event, and that all matter, space and time was created at the Big Bang. Creation is a deductive inference from these two premises (1) whatever begins to exists has a cause and (2) that the universe began to exist.