One of the dominant themes of our time is the heroic struggle of the forces of science and reason against the backwardness of ignorance and superstition. The chief villains, those standing in the way of humanity’s glorious liberation, are said to be those who proclaim the Bible, particularly Genesis creation, as eternal, unchanging truth.
The play and movie Inherit the Wind, which savagely distorts the historical reality of the 1925 Scopes ‘monkey’ trial,1 is recycled repeatedly to make sure no one misses the point of this epic ‘light vs darkness’ myth—evolutionary science is ‘good’ and creationism is ‘evil’. Echoing this theme, the late evolutionist (and signer of Humanist Manifesto II) Isaac Asimov, called creationists ‘armies of the night’.
More recently, the movie Contact reached new heights of sophistication in anti-Christian propaganda. The heroine is an atheistic seeker of truth, who is frustrated by those who oppose the new ‘truth’—i.e., that the forces of evolution have thrown up intelligent life elsewhere in the universe. She tells how she rejected Christianity when no one could answer her challenges about such things as Cain’s wife.2 Her theologically liberal boyfriend, who eventually comes to believe her, is of course portrayed as handsome, kind and sympathetic. The real villain is a fanatical-looking, revivalist-type preacher, who eventually blows up innocent people to stop the march of reason and discovery.
This sort of caricature has intimidated most Christians into keeping their heads firmly in the sand about the vital importance of the creation/evolution issue. The result—enormous humanist gains in the ‘culture wars’.
However, far from being the enemy of reason, the Christianity which takes the Bible as a totally true, authoritative revelation from the Creator God has been the driving force behind the birth of modern science. It has also been responsible for the liberation of countless numbers of people from all manner of superstitions, harmful practices and fears.
Compromise with evolution and long-ageism has weakened and undermined the influence of Christianity in our culture. Therefore, it is not surprising to see an unprecedented flourishing of all manner of crazy cults, occult practices, and bizarre superstitions, even among the intelligentsia. This link between decades of evolutionary brainwashing and the rise of irrational pseudo-science is confirmed by careful sociological research in, of all places, The Skeptical Inquirer.3
The authors of the research report make it clear that they expected that freedom from ‘the ancient myths of traditional religions’ (as they regard the Bible) would usher in a new era of rational, reasonable thought.
Their findings showed otherwise. Conservative (or ‘traditional’ or ‘fundamentalist’) Christians, the most likely to reject evolution, were also the most likely to reject ‘occult and pseudo-scientific notions’.
Furthermore, geographical surveys showed that in areas where such Darwin-rejecting churches are the weakest, there is the greatest flourishing of cults, occult activity and various forms of superstition.
The authors also state that it would be a mistake to assume that religious liberals (e.g. those who endorse evolution, long ages, etc.) had ‘superior minds of great rationality’; they are in fact ‘much more likely to accept the new superstitions’. Those who declared themselves as having ‘no religion or only nominal religion are especially likely to accept deviant, exotic alternatives to Christianity, just as they are likely to accept Darwin’. Bible-believers are the ones ‘who appear most virtuous according to scientific standards when we examine the cults and pseudo-sciences proliferating in our society today.’
This makes sense, of course. Those who swallow evolutionary notions such as the ‘big bang’ (with its universe without edge or centre), frogs turning into princes over millions of years and the like, will be more likely to accept other superstitions as well.
Creation magazine can be a powerful tool in your hands to help stem today’s tide of irrationality. It seeks to expose evolutionary/long-age thinking for what it is—pseudo-science opposed not only to the Gospel, but to reality itself.
Bainbridge and Stark, Superstitions: Old and New, The Skeptical Inquirer, pp. 18–31, Summer 1980. Return to text.
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