Saturday, February 11, 2012

Jesus: God of the Gaps


Science. Religion. Graduated cylinders. Chalices. There has long been a war waged between scientists and the religious right in America about the other keeping its greasy fingers in its own respective field.  In what ways is science applicable to religious experience, if at all? As Sam Harris believes, is religion merely a “failed science?” Does God really not play with dice, or did he just misuse his time on the 6th day in Vegas, resulting in gross negligence in the Creation that he would eventually have to damn the majority of to eternal torture in hell…because…he loves them? These battles are merely misinterpretations of scientific theory and data. Religion and technology are not at ends! Was it not Jesus that said, “Be off you brood of snipers!” while playing Modern Warfare 3? Was it not Jesus that demonstrated the Casimir effect in walking on water? Was it not Jesus who got a little crazy one night with his buddy Lazarus after watching Flatliners in exorcist school?

There is plenty of room for Jesus in science because science is still filled with gaps. Sure, you can throw a theory into a gap to temporarily satisfy yourself, but self-satisfaction sounds a lot like masturbation, so don’t. As we traverse the scientific landscape, we become more and more cognizant of the need for Jesus. The gaps are ugly holes. Holes that need to be filled with substance, not abstract theory. Holes that need to be filled with Jesus. What gaps do I speak of? Well, here are a few.

1.       Hidden variables

Entangled particles are capable of some pretty whacky shit. We know that entangled particles seem to be able communicate instantaneously, so that when you measure the spin of one, the other is simultaneously spun in the opposite direction (spin anti-correlation). This communication violates the universal speed limit of light, leaving two possibilities: the concept of locality is flawed, or there is some sort of hidden variable, such as Einstein proposed. A variable we have no knowledge of. A variable we’ve never seen. A variable we feel is there in our hearts. A variable called Jesus.

2.       Origin of the Universe

Because only speculate what propagated the Big Bang at this point, we can’t be positively certain about the events that led to the beginning of our Universe. Was it some intersection between branes? Are we part of a multiverse, born of a parent universe? Does the principle of natural selection apply to the Universe? Is time infinite, but the Universe ends in a Big Crunch, restarting the entire process and giving credence to the ideology of eternal recurrence? Or was Jesus playing baseball in the cosmos and created a singularity when making contact with the baseball…sending the Universe on a course of expansion…FOR..EEVVEE..ERRR!

3.       Dark Energy

~95% of matter and energy in our Universe is not normal energy-matter at all; it is dark matter and energy. At this point they these “dark” substances are merely hypothetical and we are yet to determine their exact roles in universal expansion and cohesion. Sounds like something Satan would cook up to me! Who is he in a constant cosmic battle with again? Oh yeah, Jesus!

4.       Placebo Effect

The placebo effect refers to the phenomena of statistically significant changes in a study participant even when they were not administered the active substance. How can someone show an improvement in symptoms of a disease when given a sugar pill? Sounds like Jesus is in control to me!

5.       Cancer

Sure the body has natural mechanisms for preventing unrestricted cell division, but sometimes these processes go awry. Why does this happen? What is tumor-necrosis factor? What are carcinogens? Who cares! There’s something more insidious happening here! Jesus punishes you for smoking! Don’t do it! You got prostate cancer for fucking that hooker! Stop!

6.       Epilepsy

Epilepsy is a phenomenon when a person goes into wild seizures for no apparent reason. Has to be a demon! Jesus cast out demons! Jesus!

7.       Schizophrenia

That guy keeps talking to himself! He says he doesn’t have control over his thoughts and actions! Drill a hole in his head! Let the demons out! Jesus!

8.       Crop Failure

I had a bad harvest this year. There’s going to be a famine in our village! She’s a witch! She cursed my crops! Send her to hell! Jesus!

9.       Malaria

Little kids all over are dying. Jesus loves the little children! Jesus hates malaria! Malaria is from Satan! Fuck you malaria! Go Jesus! Pray! Your artesunate is useless against them!

The human propensity to predict its environment has led to some pretty outlandish claims until science has successfully debunked them. Gaps in science are no more living rooms for Jesus than are rumors of miracles. Just as pandemics, mental disorders, and tragedies of all classes have been given religious significance, the same happens today. Can you not see the trend? Never have these pseudo-scientific fallacies stood the test and rigorous scrutiny that is the scientific method. Using the mystery of certain fields such as quantum mechanics to explain religious dogma is as irresponsible as using the supernatural to explain observed phenomena. Ultimately, if you believe in an omnipotent god, whether you believe the Bible to be allegorical and scientific theory to be valid is irrelevant. You still believe that there is a cosmic being with control over every quark, present in quantum foam, controlling matter. Therefore, either by negligence or allocation, this deity or force is the source of all of these ailments and mysteries, whether you accept the science behind them or not.

Chances are, you’ve never built a cell phone and most of your explanations as to how one can type a few numbers on a screen in New York and converse with a friend in L.A., as if he or she were right in front of you, would be left wanting. However, I doubt you can find many Christians that still believe Jesus sends a carrier pigeon with a microphone across the country.

I think it’s a safe assumption to say that many of you don’t fully grasp the concept of sending an e-mail to the other side of the world in seconds, and even as you most likely Google the process after you finish reading this, you’ll still be trusting the explanation of someone much more qualified than you on the subject.

Perhaps the millions that were killed by false theories based on religious dogma would have wished their society would have waited for the smart people to figure shit out.
a good old fashioned wake and bake