The BBC recently produced an excellent two-part programme concerning the beginning and end of the universe (available until 28th April). The presenter, Prof. Jim Al-Khalili, is a regular presenter of “The Life Scientific” on Radio 4 and has presented several television series on science. He is an excellent and enthusiastic explainer of things scientific. He has also been President of the British Humanist Association and describes himself as a 'cuddly atheist'.
The New Atheism debate has confirmed one significant cause of the atheism of many scientists, particularly physicists. They view religion as engendering an anti-scientific outlook, one where the whole enterprise of scientific enquiry is undermined by dogmatism, even if the particular dogmas are contradicted by scientific fact, such as creationism.
It was particularly pleasing that in this programme credit was given to Mgr. Georges Lemaître, the Belgian priest-physicist who came up with the Big Bang theory, without implying that he was a physicist despite being a Catholic priest. We might argue that Lemaître's theological outlook actually provided a perfect philosophical basis for his physics. The very notion that observation, in this case astronomical, can enable us to explain, or at least try to explain, the structure of the universe implies that the universe is explicable, rather than chaotic. Indeed, the whole enterprise of human knowing, the natural sciences included, shows this. Philosophy indicates that we cannot just take this order within physical reality for granted. The very intelligibility to us of scientific 'law' and causality implications concerning spiritual mind which, in the Faith theology, implies the necessary existence of a supreme spiritual being. The orthodox catholic view is, and has always been, that faith and observed fact cannot contradict each other since truth cannot contradict truth.
January - February 2018 2018
Recent Blog Posts
- Blog: 08.01.18“Peace is the harmony of good order. Good order is the membering of man in ready acceptance and honest love.” (Edward Holloway, Catholicism: A New Synthesis, 1)As we begin 2018, the sense of tension in the international order is strong. There are fears of nuclear war given the problem...Read More
- Blog: 30.12.17Fr Chris Findlay-Wilson made the below defence of priestly celibacy in the Catholic Herald (15th Dec., letters):"a fresh witness of true love is desperately needed; that it is love – not sex – that fulfils us as human beings." This is a point often made by Fr Holloway, ...Read More
- Blog: 24.11.17Last Saturday was the 100th anniversary of Agnes Holloway giving birth to Edward.He was born just as Lenin’s revolution began. This was the beginning of changing the poor, Christian country of Russia into the powerful Marxist one. It was predicted by Our Lady of Fatima over the previous six...Read More
- Blog: 13.11.17The Harvey Weinstein affair has unleashed a can of worms. There has been a series of exposures concerning sexual offences or inappropriate sexual behaviour of MPs, celebrities and others. There is no doubt that sexual harassment, carried out mostly by men, deserves condemnation and certainly ther...Read More
- Blog: 08.08.17We are all aware of the horror of the terrorist attacks in recent years and of the senseless attack outside the mosque in Finsbury Park, London. It is inspiring how brave those who work in the emergency services are and how strong the community support has been in all these cases. As Christians, ...Read More
- Blog: 12.01.17