Thursday, 24 March 2011

Blind Faith, meet Science.

The science department at my school was celebrating Science and Engineering week recently. We even had an assembly detailing all sorts of activities which had taken place and warning people against the dangers of charlatan scientists (which would've sat very well with me if they didn't get some of their key facts wrong...).

Drawing attention to rational thought for a while was great - science can be a great force for good and we should be celebrating scientific advances. Unfortunately we then decided to go for the polar opposite of rationalism and praise an invisible creature for all these (human) endeavours:
God of concrete, God of steel,
God of piston and of wheel,
God of pylon, God of steam,
God of girder and of beam,
God of atom, God of mine:
all the world of power is thine.

Lord of cable, Lord of rail,
Lord of freeway and of mail,
Lord of rocket and of flight,
Lord of soaring satellite,
Lord of lightning’s flashing line:
all the world of speed is thine.

Lord of science, Lord of art,
Lord of map and graph and chart,
Lord of physics and research,
Word of Bible, Faith of church,
Lord of sequence and design:
all the world of truth is thine.

God whose glory fills the earth,
gave the universe its birth,
loosed the Christ with Easter’s might,
saves the world from evil’s blight,
claims us all by grace divine:
all the world of love is thine.
I'm genuinely confused about this being included in an assembly which was supposedly about rational thought. Why have we decided to praise a being who is highly unlikely to exist for the work of human scientists? Science is about empiricism and rational thought - celebrating irrational belief in spite of the evidence is extremely odd when we've just condemned the homeopaths for doing the same thing. Are some irrational beliefs more acceptable than others?

Praising the invisible friend of some for the achievements of others is a very odd idea indeed. The mind boggles.


  1. That shit was seriously part of a school assembly?

    You need to take a leaf out of Brian Cox's book. Graffiti C6H2(NO2)3CH3 on the walls, then... Well, you know the rest, I'm sure...

  2. It was, in all seriousness. I'm very surprised that the last verse was included, it's essentially a creationist belief.