20210614 The place of unthought thoughts.

Science has long sought to put the things it cannot answer into black holes and a big bang theory. Scientists say ″something made this and in the absence of anything more credible we are going to say that there was a cataclysmic event and poof, like magic, here’s our universe. But just to be clear, we aren’t saying that ours is the only universe. We really don’t know what happened, really and, especially, we don’t know why whatever happened happened. And yes, we keep changing our minds so we not only don’t know what we don’t know, we don’t know what we know, either. That basically covers it. Oh, and if there was answer but there is no longer an answer, it’s probably in a black hole.″

Theologians say ″something made all this and in the absence of anything more credible, I’m going to call it God and say ″Thanks but you’ve taken your hand off the tiller a bit in recent times, haven’t you?″ ″

Atheists say that scientists and theologians have got it wrong and that the guiding force is called ″the universe″ and that it has a plan. So that’s just an alternative theology, then – one that doesn’t want to call God God.

Evolutionists don’t care how we got the rock we call home nor how our decentralised heating and lighting system, the sun, came about. They don’t even care when the lights will go out. What evolutionists say is that we are where we are as a result of a series of happy accidents and by trial and error, that there is no original plan, no over-riding principle, merely that those best adapted to their environment thrive and those that aren’t die off. We’ll ignore the disruption of an extinction event such as an ice age or a giant dustcloud blotting out the sun for a long period both of which largely rebooted the world’s ecosystems and resulted in a highly selective range of proto-creatures that have, in one way or another, taken over the world and so, largely, evolution is – in universal terms – surprisingly fast.

That leaves us with agnostics and, their close relatives, nihilists. Agnostics say ″I don’t believe in God or any other theory and you can’t make me.″ Nihilists say ″We don’t believe in anything: we don’t believe that anything is real, life has no purpose or meaning.″ They can’t explain why they don’t just slit their wrists and die which means they do believe in something, even if it’s only that the sun will rise tomorrow. An expression attributed to G.K. Chesterton is widely said not to be by him but, provenance aside, it’s worth thinking about.

″When men stop believing in God, they don’t believe in nothing, they believe in everything.″