Monday, May 19, 2008

Don't get your religion from scientists

Some letters from Einstein were sold recently at an auction. In these letters, Einstein criticizes Jewish and Christian religion, peppering his letter with comments about superstition, etc. This was publicized in the news.

We shouldn't listen to scientists when it comes to religion. It doesn't make sense. Scientists think in terms of science. They use physical evidence to prove something. Each scientist has a particular field, some are chemists, some are biologists, some computer scientists. They have a particular area in which they feel comfortable.

A computer scientist could not be a biologist because their way of thinking is too different. A computer scientist thinks in terms of wires and electrons and commands, whereas a biologist thinks about animals, cells, organs, behavior, and things of that sort. A biologist might be able to understand medicine better than electricity.

In the same way, scientists in general behave a certain way and shouldn't be trusted to understand religion or theology or God very deeply. It is simply a different skill set. You can't pull out your calculator and calculate how large God is. But for certain scientists, especially ones like Albert Einstein, who really excelled in certain areas, they are good at certain things and not as good at others.

Einstein was good with a calculator, but he may not have been too good at sports. Therefore, he would end up on the basketball court trying to calculate trajectory, while the other players were scoring baskets. The same goes for religion. Einstein was not predisposed to understand religion and God. However, it is important to note that Einstein was certainly a theist, which is important to remember.

I think the confusion of this comes from the fact that some people think that religion is something anyone is entitled to just invent as they see fit. This is simply not true. Originally theology was considered the highest form of education, and things like literature, science, and law were considered inferior. The most advanced degrees, which took the longest to acquire, were religious ones. Philosophers of a bygone era were much more revered than any other field. That's because there is a right and there is a wrong. The job of theologians is to find out the truth, and there's nothing more important!