March 13, 2009

Letters to the Editor

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Just ask Aristotle: Believing in one God can be a chic thing

We hear so much lately about the non-existence of God that it was refreshing to see John Fink’s column in the Feb. 13 issue of The Criterion titled “Basic Catholicism: We believe in one God.”

It is chic and trendy in today’s Western society to proclaim oneself an atheist and point to celebrities such as Richard Dawkins, an evolutionary biologist, whose latest book, The God Delusion, has been such a big hit here in the U.S.

Dawkins goes around the TV talk-show circuit smugly assuring his audiences that “almost certainly God does not exist” because evolution surely leads us to that conclusion.

Balderdash! There are other contemporary scientists with impeccable credentials who will cite their evidence for the opposite conclusion.

Take, for example, Dr. Francis Collins, PhD., a geneticist who recently directed the Human Genome Project for the National Institutes of Health, which mapped all the genes in the human body (more than 3 billion).

He was so influenced by his research that it led him to an even greater conviction of God’s existence (he calls himself an evangelical Christian), and he subsequently wrote a book in 2007 titled The Language of God.

I wonder if Dr. Collins will now have a go at all the TV talk shows to express his enthusiasm for a subject not so chic and trendy. Don’t hold your breath.

While the vast majority of people hold to their belief in God as a matter of faith, it may be interesting to note that the pagan philosopher Aristotle, who lived in the fourth century before Christ, demonstrated through reason alone that there must exist an Unmoved Mover (whom we Christians call God), and he said that this Mover must be one, not many, and must be without matter (i.e., a Spirit) and must be eternal.

Wow! That’s a pretty sharp philosopher.

No wonder St. Thomas Aquinas quoted him so much.

- Richard Rust, Greensburg

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