chapter  4
9 Pages

Science, Religion and Rationality

Philosophy is never finished. It is, by its very nature, an inconclusive subject. This is because philosophy is such a wide and all-embracing affair, co-extensive with man's curiosity and enquiry into the nature of the cosmos and his own significance within it. The business of philosophy will be ever incomplete as long as there is a world containing enquiring minds. And the enquiry has ever been twofold (although in some respects it can be viewed as one), directed at God and the world. We noted in our introduction how, since the rise of modern science in the seventeenth century, the enquiry has been increasingly concerned with the physical world; the world which we now investigate at so many levels, from the human sciences of psychology and biology, through its chemical constitution, to the theory of matter at its puzzling quantum level and on its breathtaking cosmological scale. But God will not go away; even in an age in which voices increasingly, and almost triumphantly, speak of 'the death of God', the deep and disturbing questions of religion persist. The Alpha and Omega of physics, spelled out in the spectacular terms of the 'Big Bang' theory of the creation of the universe, have not displaced the Alpha and Omega of religious enquiry.