A recent television show, titled Forever, offered the intriguing tale of a man who experiences a kind of immortality. He’s a couple hundred years old and if he dies or is killed, he returns. The premise had promise but earlier this month, after just one season Forever was cancelled. (I suppose when it comes to episodic television, there’s no such thing as Forever … unless it’s Law & Order.)From the moment we’re born, it seems we consider ourselves invincible. It’s in our nature to view the world through what I would call forever eyes. As I’ve noted before on this blog, C. S. Lewis explained it this way: “… we were made for another world.” Because we were made for another world, our eyes want to envision forever, our fingertips ache to touch forever, our hearts long to connect with forever. Each of these impulses is innate.
Over the last couple months, there’s been occasional talk in various online journals and new outlets about the concept of war-weariness. The discussions have coincided (whether intentionally or not, I can’t say for sure) with the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I. The picture to the left is my granddad (whom I never met) who served in World War I.
Reflecting on the idea of war-weariness, I’ve looked backwards at my own life. Having grown up during Korea and Vietnam, my young adulthood seemed a relatively peaceful time. Then came the first Gulf War, followed by Afghanistan and eventually Iraq. (While there were others, I’m not cataloguing all US ventures.)
It has been our good fortune in the United States that war usually doesn’t closely touch our shores … though certainly for those whose families have lost loved ones overseas (or on 9/11), the sting of war is no less felt.
Unlike the Middle East, we train our school children to shelter under their desks for tornadoes, but thankfully, not for rocket attacks. Still, whether one lives in the Middle East or middle America, it seems to me, there comes a point where one finds the weariness of ongoing war despicable.
Before purging a stack of unread magazines recently, I took up the mid-August issue of World. The Disappointment of the Double Helix by James LeFanu drew my attention. Bear in mind, I’m the last person to speak authoritatively on science and the first to disappear into a black hole when others broach any subject remotely scientific.
Nevertheless, avoiding the usual lab-rat jargon, LeFanu (in a mere ten paragraphs) ably unpacks the conundrum: within the “elegant simplicity” of the cell, scientists inevitably face “inscrutable profundity.” He notes, “… it forcefully brings to our attention what we can never know.”
Fast forward a couple days. I’m sitting with my community group watching part 5b of a video series produced by The Truth Project. (In a series of “tours,” The Truth Project explores various worldviews, weighing the truth claims of each.) On this tour, our subject is Science: What is True? Continue Reading →