“star stuff* [*and then some]: essays at the intersection of science and faith” is now available at the Kindle Store

I am pleased (and maybe a little proud) to announce the publication of my second Kindle book, a collection of essays titled star stuff* [*and then some]: essays at the intersection of science and faith.  This work represents a group of essays that attempt to bring together the logic and practice of science skills to religious themes, while remaining true to a core of Christian faith.  

This effort has been a labor of love, including a love of learning, a love of nature, and a love for the author of it all.  I must be true to the evidence I see in all realms or suffer the bleak misfortune of being intellectually dishonest.  The following excerpt is taken from chapter 1, and sets the stage for the succeeding essays.  If you find this interesting, I invite you to follow the link at the right to learn more about star stuff*.    

Life, or what we know of it so far, is indeed a wondrous thing.  The person of faith exults with praise to its creator.  That there are those among people of faith who can observe it and not want to know why it works or know more about any and every aspect of it is odd to me: learning more reveals the mind of God. The scientist wants nothing more than to understand.  That there are those among scientists who can observe its complexity and not be in awe is also puzzling to me. 

For a moment, consider a purely naturalistic view of everything.  According to Stephen Hawking, the universe is, it exists because of gravity.  Perhaps it is overly simplistic, but the complex interplay of matter and energy happened because gravity exists.  Hawking declared God redundant when he made this pronouncement.

 That’s all well and good, but from a purely naturalistic perspective, the story is never complete. I have no problem with a Big Bang.  It makes good sense.  But I do have trouble with why.  And from what.  That pesky one step back from what can be extrapolated, that question of first cause, is the fly in the ointment, at least to me.  It is impossible to answer that by science.  And the science side of me is annoyed by that.

 But I accept that there is indeed more in heaven and earth than is dreamt of in the naturalistic philosophy of science.  I believe there is more to life than can be experienced by the senses.  It is not measurable by scale or ruler. It is not observable by the most powerful microscope or telescope.  The more I firmly believe in and accept simply is.  If gravity is Hawking’s creative force, in a sense his god, mine is more.  My God is more complex.  More intelligent.  More responsive.  More compassionate.  More forgiving.  More merciful. 

 More.

 I have no scientific evidence for any of it, despite the volumes written professing to “prove” the existence of God.  But my sense of wonder is not confined to the physical.  Beyond nature is a realm vaster than the universe.  It is a reality beyond the physical, which has been variously characterized, but generally considered to be that of the spiritual.  The physical and spiritual are by no means at odds with each other.  They are complementary in every way.  Each supports and refines and clarifies its counterpart.  The trick is in knowing how to listen to each.  It is in knowing that each realm is the palette and playground of a boundless God.  He is greater than our theories, but welcomes our investigations.  He is beyond our dogmas, but welcomes our exploration.  To me, life is a journey of discovery in both worlds, a balancing of what can be observed in the physical realm with spiritual truths that can only be known by faith. 

 The greater wonder is in celebrating both.  To dismiss either is to lose a dimension, an integral piece of the puzzle of existence.  We are more than atom and molecule, flesh and bone, breath and blood.  We are star stuff and then some: we are the image of the one who conceived those stars. 

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