Christopher sent me an email with a link to yet another crazy pastor in our area who, like Pastor Mondo I have written about a few times here, is allowed to write in a special section of the local paper called “The Pastor’s Corner.” (We have not yet heard back from this paper about a Secular Humanist section of the paper and probably never will.)
I think Mokena Messenger Meyer beat New Lenox Mondo this month. I read this article and felt I had to respond. This preacher tries to argue against space exploration; very badly. He should have just stuck with the claim that it is a bad return on investment.
Here is the link to Rev. Meyer’s protest against invading what he says is his God’s space:
“Men who are ever learning but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” No matter how much man may explore the heavens above he will not learn to know God. Even the Russian Cosmonauts returned from a space flight some years ago and laughingly declared: “We didn’t see God up there.”
Mr. Meyer, space exploration is not meant to search for any gods. Space exploration is to take a further look into the cosmos to see what’s out there just as humans have explored the parts of planet Earth which were once uninhabited, wild and unknown. Scientists and astronauts don’t go out into the unknown to “know god”.
Interesting that Meyer brings up the quote of the Russian Cosmonauts. No, they did not see God up there. It was a humorous observation, not a conclusion of some hypothesis they were trying to verify. And we can conclude here on Earth from what we have observed, that no god comes, no god exists to take care of his creations here on this planet that too many believe was made specially for humankind.
Meyer asks a question then takes it upon himself to make up an answer for all of us:
So why do men continue to explore the heavens above? Because man is not satisfied with what God has given him. We are always searching, always looking, always seeking, and yet God has stated plainly, “the heavens are mine and I have given you the earth.”
Why do men and women continue to explore the heavens above? Because it is there and we want to know what is out there. Much of the technological advances we have today is because of the Space Program. Microwaves, cell phones, complex and constantly improving ways of communication are all because of scientific exploration into the cosmos.
As for the heavens belonging to a god and the Earth to humans, well you Bible Mr. Meyer was written by ancient humans who were ignorant of the world outside of their own…and even ignorant of the world in which they lived, for that matter. They might have imagined reaching to the heavens and that imagining eventually became reality. Much of what humans have achieved was only once imagined.
Also, if the world was made especially for humankind, it was not made rather crappily with the turbulent weather, unstable ground faults, volcanoes that erupt and spew molten lava down into villages and burying large numbers of homes and even people. Hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, wild fires, pestilence, disease, drought, tornadoes, microbursts, blizzards, don’t make for a very safe home that a loving creator would make for his creations.
I really like Christopher’s response to Meyer, and I am sure he won’t mind me posting it here:
I would like to see the human race continue to discover, understand, and advance the world we live in. It saddens me to know that you cannot take pleasure in the idea of human potential, that you feel our best is following the words of ancient men and their story of a master creator that demands obedience in the name of love. Even worse, you influence people in our community, preaching a faith built on fear, teaching that a quest for learning and understanding is forbidden and punishable.
Of course you are free to believe what you choose and preaching is your job, but you cause significant harm to your friends and family, your community, your country and all of humanity when you attempt to shut people out of the human experience.
We need to encourage thoughtful, meaningful and advancing ideas for the sake of improving our day to day lives, for creating good jobs that stand up to foreign competition and most of all, driving to satisfy our human need to discover.
Mr. Meyer, I’m a weekly reader of this paper and I don’t make it a point to comment on your opinion column. I think your past articles speak to those that share your beliefs and I’m not writing to argue that your should reconsider those beliefs. This article of yours is different. It suggests a position dangerous to our ability to thrive. This article stands in opposition to what most would consider good for our understanding of the world. This article stands to diminish the pioneering of a more diverse community than which you recognize.
In regards to this topic, your god has no title, nor a deed to space, any space except by the claims written in your book. Our world is for all of us to explore and enjoy. Stand aside if you wish. Make a call that government money not be used to fund exploration and discovery. You can suggest leaving it up to the private sector but please do not think all of us want to live in the dark ages.
Well said, Christopher…an excellent and reasonable response. Too bad that Rev. Meyer and most of his followers won’t understand it.