Darkness and Light
We are nocturnal creatures. Darkness is our element. The future is shrouded in deep mist and shadow. We can’t see very clearly and we can’t see very far, so we feel our way, grope, and guess at what’s ahead. Faith is our candle, flickering, dim, uncertain, but necessary. Faith in science, faith in our intuitions and calculations, faith in luck, faith in God. There are many kinds of faith. We live by one or more of them. Without it we weaken, we fall, we perish.
Not only scripture but all of human experience tells us we need something strong, good, and wise to believe in. For some it’s a statue of Zeus or Sophia, for some kinetic theory and the empirical method, for some the writings of a brilliant atheist, for some Confucius, Buddha, Allah, the God of Abraham, or Christ. To believe is to hold as true what cannot yet be verified. It’s a conviction, a sense of direction, that helps us move bravely through our darkness. And face what lies beyond it – the blackness of utter extinction or endless light.