Love, Chemistry, and Atheism

Someone in the atheist subreddit shared the above image, which they proudly proclaimed that they had fixed to reflect their lack of religious sentiment. A number of commenters there expressed the view that the recipient of the card, even if an atheist, would likely not be impressed with the change.

Some think that the only way to appreciate love or a sunset properly is to mention God and ignore or even deny scientific accounts of the processes involved. And some think that the only way to avoid religious superstition is to embrace reductionism.

Thankfully there are options in between those two extremes. One can accept the scientific account as perfectly appropriate and accurate on one level, and accept poetry and metaphor on another.

UPDATE: I wrote this post yesterday, and this morning Fred Clark shared this Zen Pencils cartoon focusing on the same point, albeit aporoaching from the other end of the spectrum, drawing on words of Richard Feynman.

I reject the voices on both sides which say that adding another perspective on the same reality automatically detracts rather than having the potential to co-exist and enhance our appreciation.


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