This article tackles the ‘faith in science’ angle. We do live in a secularized age where science is elevated to the top of the platform. The idea that science and religion are at odds, that science is all about what is real and true, and that science is what can save us (and give us extra muscle in arguments), is the default belief system endorsed by our culture and taught in our schools. STEM after all. That’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Those are the important subjects our schools are focusing on. Which is fine to a point.
As I tell my boys, using a little lingo from their D&D roll playing games, there’s Intelligence and then there’s Wisdom. STEM is the domain of intelligence. Wisdom is found in the realm of the humanities including, but not limited to, philosophy and religion. Basically, intelligence, science and technology is where you obtain the skills needed to invent a weapon of mass destruction. The humanities, the domain of wisdom, is where you hopefully figure out you shouldn’t.
Yet our focus is mostly on science, tech, and the belief that everything else deserves to sit at the card table of the cultural feast. That’s typically how it is portrayed, and it’s not just portrayed that way in television or movies. It’s not surprising, therefore, that in this environment kids leave the Faith at some point in their lives.
There are other reasons, of course. Along with this science focus in our culture comes an openness for hedonism and narcissism, pressed down, shaken together and running over. Religion, certainly Christianity, is about denying yourself. Our culture is about affirming yourself and your desires, and making damn sure the rest of the world affirms you as well. What’s more, science always seems to inexplicably validate what we really want, especially when it comes to our more hedonistic whims. The perfect combination. Science is all that matters and it always proves what I want it to prove. Try fitting ‘take up your cross’ into that environment.