Saturday, April 08, 2006

The New Priests

For centuries, people turned to the clergy to answer their questions about the universe and their place within it. The deepest metaphysical questions were added to mundane queries and their priests, prophets, and pastors answered them -- some correctly, some not. Since Darwin -- and we are simplifying things here -- that changed; slowly at first, then rapidly, and now, slowing again.

Scientists are our priests and their Eucharist is macro evolution. It is the shibboleth that shall not be questioned. Social scientists, biologists, psychologists, linguists, geologists, educators, and political scientists are all required to tug their forelocks and genuflect before the Agreed Upon Story of evolution and state -- and re-state -- their switch to the new and improved priesthood of science.

Doubt me? Let one example suffice. Let's say you're feeling a bit unwell. You go to the doctor's office but you are not allowed to see the Great Healer. You must approach a representative of the doctor but, even there, you may not directly speak to them. You speak through a glass, darkly, and make your case as to your worthiness to be seen. If you are granted a measure of acceptability you are directed to enter the Place of Waiting where no one is allowed to know the day or hour of the approach of the healer.

Eventually, a door opens to another realm and a name is called. One of your number stands as others watch in wonder, awe, and fear. The time comes -- it is your name. You enter a long corridor of light and are told to move along it to Another Place. Even there, no healer appears. You are directed into another room of waiting -- a hades of sorts. There, you are directed to doff the clothes of sickness and put on the paper gown of embarrasment. You are then directed to sit upon the cold table of surprise and wait once more. No matter how faithfully you watch and wait you will still be surprised when the door suddenly opens and a being dressed in white wafts in.

You know your time is limited. If you are not heard by this One there will be no healing. You speak respectfully, quickly, trying to get the facts of your case out before you are dismissed or the One leaves. You have no control over the situation. If you are blessed and the Healer decides to offer you aid, he will write on a special tablet that you -- not one of the priests -- may never own. He will use a strange language only readable by other scholars and priests.

You must take that sacred script with you on a holy journey across town past dangers and trials (ever driven in Detroit?) and enter another place where you find other priests dressed in blue, living in an elevated position. You hand up your sacred scroll to them and patiently wait for them to interpret it and supply to you the medium of healing.

I love science. I have two doctorates in science. I read it for fun (sad, but true). Yet, the way that science has closed its ranks to any dissension, elevated itself to priesthood status, and demands the destruction and humiliation of any who question its Received Wisdom is deeply troubling. As one columnist has noted recently (, they have taken the role of The Church against any modern day Galileo who questions their Divine Theory.

In a world where professors and department heads at major universities are seriously considering rescinding the doctoral degrees of any former graduates who later are found to be creationists; where Scientific American fires an award winning columnist in the field of electronics for privately believing in creation (he never wrote of that belief), and where churches and churchmen rush to agree with newsmagazines and tabloid reports of the significance of each supposed new link in the chain of our crawl from the premordial soup... God bless the rebels who refuse to bow to the new priests, who keep their minds open to truth -- untainted truth -- from God and nature, and who believe, not in the new priesthood, but in the One God.


At 4/09/2006 01:48:00 PM , Blogger David U said...

Been to the ole Saw-Bones lately, huh? That'll learn ya!

Great post, Patrick!

The Church is not the only place arrogance can be found, huh?


At 4/09/2006 04:56:00 PM , Blogger L.E.Meredith said...

I don't know if this was intended to be funny or not, but you can just tell you have been to the Doc recently, I laughed my head off oops now I have to go to the doctor to get it sewed back on.

At 4/09/2006 11:46:00 PM , Blogger Morris said...

It seems that visiting the quacks is the same everywhere...
Patrick, that was just so spot-on I broke up laughing. The table of *cold* surprise it certainly is.

At 4/10/2006 09:44:00 AM , Blogger Jim MacKenzie said...

Patrick, don't forget the penance (I mean co-pay) found at the Great Healers office (again - behind the glass!) and the other priests dressed in blue at the other place across town!

At 4/10/2006 09:49:00 AM , Blogger PatrickMead said...

Is THAT why HMO directors can go to heaven... but they only get to stay two days?

At 4/10/2006 12:07:00 PM , Blogger Bill said...

Thank you, Patrick, for bringing this into the light with such clarity! Excellent post!

At 4/10/2006 02:25:00 PM , Blogger Laurie said...

HI Patrick! First I need you to pray for me, continuously! Second: Hubby told me an interesting thing the other day about an article he had been reading about global warming and NASA studying ice caps and the like. Apparently, some of the scientists at NASA believe there was a BIG flood 8000 years ago.
Hubby says he will look up the article again if you would like it.

Be Blessed.

At 4/10/2006 02:29:00 PM , Blogger Joel Maners said...

Great writing. I'll have to share this with a physician friend of mine. I just hope I don't get sick anytime soon!

At 4/10/2006 02:53:00 PM , Blogger TCS said...

yeah but they are just practicing. So what do you do with that?

At 4/10/2006 05:40:00 PM , Blogger Lovell's Lookout said...

Patrick- Great post. I love the fact that you "run and think" in circles outside the "Church". Refreshing. Essential. I used your "tent pegs" statement, the mission of your blog, in a sermon Sunday. I am preaching thru Heb. 11. Abraham. Tents. Faith. Moving.YOur statement blessed people. Keep moving brother...

At 4/11/2006 07:17:00 AM , Blogger mike the eyeguy said...


I throughly oppose the philosophical materialism that underlies the thinking of most (but not all) Neo-Darwinists. However, I do not dismiss macroevolution out of hand as one of the means by which God may have done some of his creating.

Also, I don't feel that all Christians who allow for the possiblity of some of the macroevolution scenarios are mere accomodationists--one of them is the former chair of the biology department at David Lipscomb, a former elder and a very good friend of mine. He has never felt threatened by Darwinism and feels that Genesis (in the original Hebrew at least) allows room for an old earth and slow development.

I would be very interested in reading about the universities who are considering rescinding the degrees of creationists it you could point the way to some sources to check out. If they succeed in doing that, then that would truly be an egregious violation of academic freedom.

If you think going to your primary care physician is bad, try going to your neighborhood optometrist! Those docs will really mess with your head!


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