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  • Writer's pictureAshley Christine

Thoughts on Religion

For years, I have avoided the conversation about religion. There is an unspoken deference that’s expected of all of us to give religion distance and respect, and generally allow them to do whatever they want. But that power has been abused, often in the name of righteousness, and I think it’s time the STEM community takes more of a stance on challenging religious texts, rather than pretend like they’re not there.


The STEM community’s stance has generally been to ignore religion because we have been at odds for centuries. The religious houses are conservative and believe in preservation - borderline stagnation. Whereas science is about moving forward.


I understand the desire to hold on to something greater than ourselves, and that something has a plan. There are so many unanswered questions about life; why is it happening? Why did it begin? What’s the point? And science cannot answer them.


I remember what it felt like to be comforted by what constitutes as an answer from a theological platform, because I was once a member of a religious house. I was heavily indoctrinated into Christianity from a young age. So, I am familiar with the arguments and the justifications of a faith that I once believed in whole-heartedly.


Like many children indoctrinated into a system that presents God at the same time as Santa Claus and the tooth fairy, it’s plausible at first, but over time you begin to ask questions that never receive a satisfying answer. There is no evidence that any major religion on Earth is correct. In fact, as we progress, the more questions that were previously answered by them are now being answered by math and science.


STEM evolves with society through curiosity and discovering. Religion evolves by redlining the old stories or stripping them down. Picking and choosing what to believe based on international law and cultural shifts of the modern times. A constant game of catch-up as they lag behind society’s progression.


Exodus 35:2, if you work on the sabbath, you are to be put to death. Peter 2:18, slaves be subject to your masters. Exodus 21:7, how to sell your daughter into slavery. Don’t mix wool and linen. Don’t eat pork. Don’t mix two kinds of seeds in your crop. Et cetera, et cetera. We don’t follow many of the rules because either society has outlawed them, or outgrown them.


To someone who doesn’t follow one of the religious houses, they all sound the same. There is no fundamental difference between believing that Zeus sits on Mount Olympus and controls the weather, to a modern God who sits above the clouds and controls which children get cancer.


The STEM community needs to be more vocal about the fallacies, and stop pretending like religion is a relic of the past.   


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