The secularists and naturalists have created the myth that there is a war going on between science and religion. There never has been a war between religion and true science. In fact, the first universities were founded by the Church in the Middle Ages in connection with cathedral schools. The conflict is not scientific, but philosophical—that is, the philosophical interpretation of the results of scientific investigation. The atheists claim that everything in the universe can be explained without any reference to purpose, meaning and design. The atheists have to eliminate purpose from nature because purpose means striving for a definite end, and that implies intelligence. For the universe, that intelligence can only be God. Therefore atheists try to remove purpose and replace it with various forms of evolution, which has been called a “universal acid.” Feser states this well: “And the elimination of purpose and meaning from the modern conception of the material universe was not and is not a ‘result’ or ‘discovery’ of modern science, but rather a philosophical interpretation of the results of modern science which owes more to early modern secularist philosophers like Hobbes and Hume…than it does to the great scientists of the last few centuries” (11). He goes on to say that the war between science and religion is not a scientific or religious dispute, but a conflict between two “rival philosophical worldviews”—moderate realism and materialism.
The author’s arguments are based on the certain metaphysical principles worked out by Aristotle and perfected by Aquinas, namely, the four causes that are involved in the production and motion of all material things: material, formal, efficient and final. The final cause it the most important for, without it, no agent would act. Aquinas said that the final cause is “the cause of causes.” Every agent acts for an end; to deny that is either stupid or perverse. Those who deny final causes are trying to persuade others that there are no final causes—that is their purpose. So they use final causality to deny it and that is a contradiction that should be obvious to any intelligent observer.Read the rest here.
HT: Carl Olsen