Playing God - Oops, There’s THAT Word Again!
By far, the most perplexing problem facing humanity today is the head-on collision between God and science that continues to produce the greatest casualty list in the history of man. Collateral damage from the resulting War On Nature is altering the human species like nothing else ever has. The question that many ask is, “Can God and science co-exist?” Let’s attempt to answer that.
The first definition stated in my well-worn, (and old) dictionary for the word, “science” is, “possession of knowledge as distinguished from ignorance or misunderstanding.” The second definition is, “knowledge attained through study or practice.” Do I have to define “God” for anyone? The same dictionary has this as the first entry for “God” (capitalized): “the supreme or ultimate reality.”
Okay, so I tend to be a bit of a wordsmith, so words mean things to me. I haven’t checked with a more modern dictionary on meanings because, frankly, I don’t give a damn what the modern corruption of either word might be. English is an old language, and we are not exactly talking about words that fall into any newly colloquialized terminology.
I cannot tell you how many times I have heard people say that they just cannot believe in the existence of God because He cannot be scientifically proven. There are people who have devoted their whole lives to trying to prove that God exists, and conversely, others who do nothing but try to prove He does not. Going back to our “old” definitions, we can easily see why both groups of folks are not likely to ever make their proofs.
Science is imperfect because people are imperfect – it has always been, and so it will always be. Man’s greatest paradox is the attempt by too many to interchange God and science replacing one with the other – when, in reality, one should lead to the other if the path is kept clear of prejudices. With an honest pursuit of ultimate knowledge, humanity would not be facing such a cataclysm of moral and ethical problems involving science. But honesty and morality have been cast aside to embrace a substitute for “knowledge.”
I predicted years ago that with the legalization of abortion, humans had opened a Pandora’s Box that we’d never be able to close. Once human life was devalued to the point that it can be legally snuffed out in its most innocent form, honest intelligence and knowledge had to be set aside. If one can argue that an unborn human isn’t really life, (because it can’t survive independently?) then all other dependent life is fair game for the would be exterminators. Enter the euthanasia crowd. Now we have the “quality of life” arguments that require human beings to pass the ultimate judgment on other innocent, dependent humans. Never mind that the people who seem to have no problems with that will hold vigils outside a prison where a convicted murderer is about to receive a death sentence! How convoluted is that?
Science is a wonderful thing and has produced much in the race for human progress. Having cracked the human DNA code, scientists can now solve previously unsolvable cases, cure previously incurable diseases, and treat many previously untreatable human conditions. Understanding and knowledge has advanced, but morality and reality has taken a nosedive. It doesn’t have to be if only people would let God and science co-exist.
I hear the lament of some non-believers that religion has been responsible for more human death and suffering than anything else on earth. Reality check. Let’s run that one past science and see what sticks, shall we? I won’t even bother to lead anyone by the hand on that one!
Moving on to some more benign consequences of man playing God, we can see some impossible to solve human issues of ethics that nature would have never conceived of. Case in point – recently I read about another white woman giving birth to twin babies of, shall we say, an obviously different ethnic origin. This has happened before due to the human failure of science bungling the job of getting the correct fertilized eggs implanted in the right host. Results, while not life threatening, are none-the-less devastating in terms of human suffering. Now we have two sets of parents legitimately claiming the offspring. While this may seem no hill for a stepper in a black robe from a courtroom bench, it is a very big deal for both the winner and the loser. It also opens the door for questions in the mind of every single recipient of the in vitro procedure – past, present and future.
It is bad enough to come across cases of babies switched at birth through human error that had nothing to with science, but to wonder – no, to know – that there are others out there who did not present such an obvious clue to the mistake at birth and, therefore, were sent away to live their lives without truth in their backgrounds, is now a great cause for concern among many scientific and religious hand wringers alike.
The latest attempt to ignore truth and reality by those wishing to use science to play God is the debate over the use of cloning. At the very best, cloning is thus far an unreliable and volatile science in and of itself. However, it is being embraced as the cure-all for devastating human diseases and imperfections of all kinds. The issue has already made its way into the legislative chambers of state and federal government for the usual lip service, pro and con, and decisions about how to best to “regulate” it, (profitability not excluded I’m sure.)
Human arrogance never ceases to amaze me. For some time now, the by products of in vitro fertilization have been a bit of a moral and ethical delimma for those involved with storage of unused, fertilized eggs. Now it seems we have a proposed use for these little humans, (they certainly wouldn’t turn into rats or dogs if they were allowed to incubate, would they?), that the “enlightened community can rationalize away any sticky issues of concern by simply labeling those who voice them as “religious.” Isn’t that tidy? As in, don’t listen to those religious idiots – why, they would have you give up your legal abortions! (Gasp!)
In case you may think that I am implying an attitude that isn’t there, here is a quote that was proudly displayed as a “quote of the day” on a liberal website – exactly as it appeared there: (The name of the site is democrats.com.)
"If a bill sponsored by Sen. Sam Brownback passes, human cloning of any kind -- even just for medical purposes -- will become illegal. This bill has already passed the House. [It] is supported by President Bush. Brownback and his supporters are entited to their beliefs. But they are primarily religious ones -- a determination that life begins when they believe it does... ultimately, they want to declare the fetus ... a person, protected by the Constitution. To destroy it is murder. Goodbye abortion. But this bill is nothing less than an attempt to impose a religious doctrine on the rest of us... It is an attempt by legislative fiat to stop science in its tracks: Thou Shalt Remain Ignorant."
In the Washington Post, p. A-25
Richard Cohen, 05-May-02
Now, what was that old definition of science again? Something about . . . “possession of knowledge as distinguished from ignorance or misunderstanding.” Hmmmmmm. What kind of “science” has taken over in the minds of arrogant humans? Certainly not that which has any hope of attaining “the supreme or ultimate reality.” And I am supposed to worry about where and when and around whom I can utter the word, “God”?
I fear man doth protest too much. May God help my hopelessly ignorant and misguided human brothers and sisters who continue to worship their own religion of “science” with such arrogance!
Morals and ethics are tools that need not be cast away by science simply because they may stem from God. In fact, perhaps the only way for science, (pursuit of knowledge) to prevail is for it to follow the path to God, (supreme or ultimate reality). As for those who still wish to “play” God, perhaps they should take their cue and leave the stage.