Theory or Proof?

I’m a boolean kind of guy, I guess.  I like things to be clear cut with clear answers.  Black or white, on or off, one or zero.  No gray areas, no fuzz factors, no sliding scales.

I guess that’s why I grew up loving math.  My first main vocation was in accounting.  Later, I made a career change to information technology.  Both are very attractive to a “boolean” guy like me.  No matter how deep you have to dig, the answer to the problem eventually becomes clear.

Neither faith nor science are boolean.  There are a lot of unknowns in each.  It has been my observance that most people of science who don’t believe in God cite empirical evidence as their mantra.  Most say they want rock solid, conclusive and convincing proof before they will even consider the existance of any kind of supreme being.

This makes me wonder about double-standards.  I’ve noticed in just the last few years the Nobel prize for physics has gone to men who have based key elements of their work on unproveable theory.

In 2011, three men were awarded the prize for their “discovery of the accelerating expansion of the universe through observations of distant supernovae”.  Two key elements in their study were dark matter and dark energy. Both of these are hypothetical and while both very well may prove to be correct hypotheses some day, neither was at the time of the award a proven fact.

In 2013, two men were awarded the prize for “the theoretical discovery of a mechanism that contributes to our understanding of the origin of mass of subatomic particles, and which recently was confirmed through the discovery of the predicted fundamental particle”.  Well, I’m not convinced of anything factual simply because of the wording here.  The verbiage states “theoretical discovery” and “predicted fundamental particle” – both rather dubious sounding, wouldn’t you agree?  At any rate, reading deeper I find this award is rooted in their work with fundamental particles, and again much is based on theory and not in proven evidence.

I’m no match for these men and their understanding of science nor do I pretend to be.  I’ve no doubt that much of their work will be fruitful in the futhering of scientific knowledge in their field and in advancing science overall.  I certainly don’t begrudge these men of their well earned accolades, either.

What I am asking is this – is this a double-standard?  These men could very well believe in God for all I know, and I hope they do.  What is more likely though is that many non-believers, particularly those in science, will refute a person’s faith in God as baseless because they see no proof… yet, accept the reports of the greater scientific community (such as these) as confirmed proof of how the natural universe works – even though theories abound.

I believe we should applaud the work of these men for their desire for the truth in how the universe works, and pray that if they don’t currently believe in a God of science, a God who created this universe – that their work will one day lead them to a place where God is clearly the only answer, and then recognize and accept Him as their God as well.

Science can have a purifying effect on religion, freeing it from beliefs of a pre-scientific age and helping us to a truer conception of God. At the same time, I am far from believing that science will ever give us the answers to all our questions.Nevill Mott

The more I study nature, the more I stand amazed at the work of the Creator. Science brings men nearer to God.Louis Pasteur

This entry was posted in Cosmology and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s