googlef87758e9b6df9bec.html A Sure Word: The Hunt for the Truth

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Hunt for the Truth

Many years ago there lived two brothers: Evo and Creo. They were alike in many ways. Both loved the outdoors, they marveled at the wonders of nature, and both were very inquisitive to know more about it. However, both had very different ideas about what they saw.

One day, after breakfast but before starting his chores, Creo was reading the Big Book when Evo walked in. Creo laughed at the way he was dressed. Evo was wearing old clothes, a big floppy hat, an orange hunting vest, hip-waders, and was carrying a butterfly net and a camera.

“Where are you going dressed like that?” Creo asked.

Evo responded confidently, “I’m going to hunt for the Truth!”

“The Truth?” Creo replied.

“Yes,” answered Evo, “the Truth. It’s that elusive creature that is said to have once lived in these woods.”

Creo looked puzzled, “I know what the Truth is. I was just surprised that you’re going to look for it. Why?”

“Well,” began Evo thoughtfully, “I want to know more about it. I want to know what it is and what it looks like. I want to find out what’s really out there.”

Creo was still puzzled, “That's great that you're interested but the Truth isn't out there in the woods any more. We only know about the Truth because The One who wrote the Big Book told us all about the it.”

“Bah,” spat back Evo. “The Big Book was written a long time ago. How can you believe the things written in it?”

Creo thought a moment, “Well, there are a lot of things written in the Big Book. Some of the things I can verify and they’re all correct. Since the things I can verify are correct, I trust the Big Book about the things I can’t verify.”

“Aha! Then you admit you can’t know for sure what it says about the Truth,” Evo pointed his finger at Creo as if to accuse him but Creo did not flinch.

“That’s not what I said. I said I trust the Big Book about things I can’t verify because I know it’s correct about those things I can verify.”

Evo didn’t pursue the point anymore but began gathering up a few more things to take with him – a magnifying glass, his spectacles, a tablet of paper, and a fanny-pack. As he was packing the items he continued once more talking about his quest, “Anyway, I’m going to find the Truth so I can study it scientifically.”

“But the Truth lived long ago. What makes you think you can even find it?” Creo asked.

Evo sighed. He was becoming annoyed with Creo. He knew Creo believed all the things written in the Big Book but Evo liked to think of himself as skeptical and would not be fooled into believing ancient tales. “Look,” he answered trying to maintain composure, “You’re welcome to believe what the Big Book says about the Truth but I’m going to do this scientifically. The Big Book isn’t scientific evidence.”

Creo was undeterred, “I admire that you want to learn more about the Truth but if the Truth lived long ago, how can you study it scientifically? It’s long gone now.”

“If the Truth lived then there should still be evidence for it. I will look for the evidence.”

“With those?” Creo asked pointing to items Evo was stuffing into his fanny pack. “Do you think you’re going to be able to catch the Truth in a net? Will you be able to put it under the lens of your camera or magnifying glass?”

“Of course with these,” Evo snapped back, “These are the tools of science. With these I can study nature. I can take pictures and take samples to study.”

Creo asked again, “But you can’t observe the past. I’ve told you that the Truth lived a long time ago. How can you take a picture of it now? How can you study it?”

Evo had had enough, “Look! The Big Book is a bunch of garbage. It was written by people who didn’t understand science. I’m going to find out the real facts about the Truth.”

“We already have the real facts,” Creo persisted. “If the Truth lived long ago then you can no longer study it like you study other things. The best evidence for it now is what the One made the Truth put into the Big Book.”

“See, that’s exactly my point. You said the One who wrote the Big Book ‘made’ the Truth. That’s garbage. It’s like believing in magic. If the Truth lived, it was born like everything else. It wasn’t created out of nothing.”

Creo chuckled. He tried to hide his amusement but Evo was incensed, “Why do you think that’s funny?”

“Because,” Creo answered still smirking, “if everything is born then where did the first parents came from?”

Creo thought he saw smoke coming from Evo’s ears as Evo shot back, “Where the first parents came from is not what I’m looking for. I’m only trying to find the Truth and I’m going to do it scientifically. I’m not relying on some old book written by goat herders.”

Creo sipped his coffee and gave Evo a moment to calm down. He put a sugar packet into the Big Book he was reading, saving his place before closing it. After a moment he continued, “Let me get this straight. You want to know more about the Truth and so you are looking for evidence for it. You won’t consider the Big Book as evidence even though it was written by the One who made the Truth. You want to find your own evidence for the Truth even though it lived so long ago you can’t even study it anymore. Is that right?”

Evo paused before answering. He wasn’t sure if Creo was being sarcastic or sincere in his question. “I’ve already said that I’m only going to use science. What somebody wrote in a book is not science. You can’t use a book to prove the things written in the book. That’s circular reasoning.”

Creo could see this was going nowhere. “OK, he conceded. Go ahead and look for the Truth even though it’s not out there in the woods. At least take the Big Book with you so that you can recognize the Truth if you see it.”

“I don’t need the Big Book. I will know the Truth when I find it.”

“How?” asked Creo. “There are a lot of things out there the claim to be the Truth but they are false-Truths.”

“I will know the Truth by comparing it to things that are alive now.”

“But things are different now than in the time of the Truth,” replied Creo.

“Phooey. Natural laws are constant. Are you saying physics was different in the days of the Truth? We can use what we know about nature today to help us understand things that happened long ago. ‘The present is the key to the past’ as the saying goes.”

“What about evidence of the Flood?” asked Creo.

Evo replied with a question, “What?”

“The Flood. You know. The Big Book says the Truth was alive during the time of the Great Flood. So if you find evidence of the Great Flood, then that would be evidence for the Truth, right?”

Evo shook his head, “No, of course not. There have been a lot of floods. The goat herders who wrote the Big Book probably experienced a big flood but that’s not evidence for the Truth. Perhaps I’ll find some record of a flood from where the Truth lived but that’s not the Great Flood.”

Creo started to respond but Evo interrupted him, “Besides, how do you know the Truth written about in the Big Book is even the real Truth. You said yourself that there are many things out there that claim to be the Truth. Maybe one of them is the real Truth. I will go wherever the evidence leads.”

Creo was shocked, “Not only are you rejecting everything we already know about the Truth but you’re also willing to believe that a false-Truth is real if you think there’s evidence for it? It sounds to me like you’re mind is already made up about what the Truth is. The Truth is anything except what the Big Book says it is.”

Evo was done talking. He gathered up a few more things for his adventure – a paddle ball game and TV remote – then headed out the door.


Ian B said...

Cute story.

It gives a lot of insight to how the Christian mind thinks.

The main difference between science and religion is this:

Science is an ever-changing landscape determined what evidence is available and examined and debated. It is the quest for knowledge and the exploration of limitless information and constant revision.

Religion has already reached its conclusion and only supports evidence that supports its claims, disregarding anything that contradicts its beliefs. It holds its foundation in a book that cannot be questioned, doubted or refuted.

RKBentley said...

Ian B,

Thanks for visiting my blog. I especially enjoy when visitors leave comments.

I think you may have missed one point of my story. That is that scientists indeed have a bias - they believe every phenomenon must have a natural explanation and that the only "real" evindence is "scientific" evidence.

When considering an event from the unobserved past (such as the origin of the universe), evolutioniary scientists will only consider a natural explanation. It's too bad for them that the correct explanation is the supernatural one.

Thanks again for visiting my blog. Have a great day!!