You know what you call someone who holds the end of a chain in his hand and still keeps looking for the end?
Science tells us many things. For example, if we know where an object begins and its velocity, we can tell where an object will be at any time. Now, instead of knowing the velocity and how it changes over time, we can simply consider the initial velocity and position and consider how the acceleration changes over time. Now, instead of considering acceleration, we can consider all of the outside forces that interact with the object and calculate the acceleration at any time and from there we can discover the position of the object. We can go further and analyze the quantum states of the different objects and on and on. This is the true wonder of science.
Faith says, “You are here.”
It is easy, in this modern world to spit on religion. To call it on the groundless assumptions and ridiculous simplifications it offers. It is easy to shy away from easy answers and look for the chain of cause and effect that runs the world. It is impossible to find the beginning of that chain. It is easy to laugh at the people that claim it begins with “God.” There is nothing easier than calling someone who does not seek the answers a fool.
You know how faith counters these allegations?
Faith says, “You are here.”
There was a time I was sad and depressed and couldn’t figure out how to get anywhere. I started taking a small step forward every day. I’d fall and pick myself up and try again. Sometimes I’d turn around and head in a different direction and call it forward. Every time I fell and didn’t feel like getting up I felt this little voice nagging at me, “You’re still here?” In some ways I had known I had made progress, yet in others I kept failing. No matter what happened, this little green alien on my back kept conking me in the head and saying, “Still here you are?” At first it was the doubt of my self he fed me that kept me striving. As I got out of that swamp I looked up to this strange alien on my back for some reassurance and he told me the most important thing, “Still here you are?”
The little sci-fi fantasy aside, there is a truth here. As long as you seek the beginning of the causal chain, you keep finding more rules that govern the universe. From there we create new drugs and new machines and laws. We gain deeper insights into the universe and ourselves in science. At any point where you stop and find the joy of actually existing with contentment of your understanding, “You are here.” The goals of religion and science are to get to the same place.
Faith is that point on the map where everyone ends up. You can disagree with religion all you want. It may be the wrong path. You can disagree with science all you want, it is a journey that asks you to question the directions and backtrack when you must. However, if we are going to have a conversation about anything, you must be here. You must stop deluding yourself into thinking that there is something you believe that is not ultimately based on faith. I have faith in gravity and I have faith that good people deserve good things. I don’t need a deeper reason for either. I do not care what causes gravity. I do not care if gravity is causeless. I have faith, so I can talk about gravity as if it exists and as if it is an absolute. What can you speak of as an absolute?
I am here. When you get here, let us speak of our journey and where we want to go and enjoy each other in our togetherness in time and space.
Everything is in the last place you look, because if you find it and keep looking, you’re an idiot who will never find the end of a chain even if it is in your hand. If you haven’t found a truth that you can accept with faith, then by all means keep searching, but understand that the man who is not looking is the man who has found the end of his chain. He may be an idiot and drown himself or destroy humanity, but the fact that he has found his anchor is not to be trifled with or joked about. He has accomplished exactly what you are trying to do.