Thursday, January 29, 2015

Dancing with Fairies

There is a modern tendency to lump the belief in God in with the belief in fairies. The underlying assumption is that these are supernatural beings, and science has disproved the supernatural. The truth is that science cannot disprove the supernatural, because science does not speak to the issue. Science tells us what happens in the normal course of nature, if no one intervenes. It cannot say whether there is someone to intervene or whether they will. Gravity says that if I drop something, it will fall toward the center of the earth. But if someone catches it, they have not violated the laws of science, which say how things work when left to themselves.

What then about fairies? There have always been mysterious things observed along the edges of human life. In the old days it was fairies, leprechauns, and goblins. In modern times it is UFOs, Bigfoot, and the Loch Ness Monster. Ghosts seem to be perennial. (Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy are in a different category, being simply games for children. I have empirical evidence that they are not real.) I am high skeptical of any of these being genuine. But I still feel they need some explanation. In terms of UFOs, I like the Klass plasma hypothesis, that what is observed is some naturally occurring form of plasma. It would explain why they are observed by otherwise reliable observers, but do not act as we would expect alien spacecraft to. I sometimes wonder if in earlier times people saw moving lights and imagined there was a person inside. But whatever they are, hallucinations, natural phenomena, real, or even demonic manifestations, I would like considerably more evidence before believing any of these are what they are claimed to be. However, if such evidence were forthcoming, I am convinced that science would find a way to integrate such things into the natural universe, even fairies. It would ask what they were made of and where they came from and expect to find answers. I am not expecting this to happen because I do not believe fairies are real, but the problem is the lack of solid evidence. What this has to do with the existence of God, who was announced publicly by prophets and became a man to pay for our sins in the open light of history, is not at all clear. You can disbelieve in both, but I see no real analogy.

Part of the problem here is a misunderstanding of monotheism. There are two types of monotheism. One wants one God who is a minimal God that does almost nothing. The other believes in one God who is an absolute God and brooks no equals. The God of Christianity is the second type. He is not the last limited remnant of the supernatural, after all the rest are refuted. He is the Sovereign who controls all things, leaving no place for lesser gods, or even fairies.       

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