The Magical Twins-Science and Magic

The Magical Twins

“Those who have studied the period know better. There was very little magic in the Middle Ages; the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries are the high noon of magic. The serious magical endeavour and the serious scientific endeavour are twins: one was sickly and died, the other strong and throve. But they were twins. They were born of the same impulse. I allow that some (certainly not all) of the early scientists were actuated by a pure love of knowledge. But if we consider the temper of that age as a whole we can discern the impulse of which I speak.[1] C.S. Lewis  

I was reading C.S. Lewis’s The Abolition of Man and ran across the above excerpt, which sparked the question as to how science and magic are similar. Of course, raising such a question will immediately cause indignation on the part of those who are involved in scientism, i.e., those who have made science into a religion or ideology. These folks believe that science is above reproach and criticism, which is itself the very proof that they have accepted it as an absolute in their lives. Absolutism is one of the characteristics of a religion, not science, at least real science. Authentic science is a body of knowledge that is constantly changing and expanding. One way it expands is through falsification and criticism. When a belief system is closed to these things, it can no longer be called science; it must be called scientism.

One of the things that science and magic have in common is that they both have magical dust, which we might call fairy dust. Fairy dust is magical dust that makes magical and unbelievable things happen. The magician can throw fairy dust on something and make it appear or disappear with a bang and a lot of smoke, which keeps the audience from seeing what is going on behind the scenes. The audience believes because it wants to believe in magic and the skill of the magician at creating an illusion. However, there are always a few in the audience who seem to have x-ray eyes that see through the illusion.

I know some are getting a little curious as to what the fairy dust of science is. Well, it is the fairy dust of time. When some scientists have a problem with explaining and justifying certain theories, they simply sprinkle some fairy dust of time on it to make it work. For example, when evolutionists came up against some very large problems of not having enough time for their theories to work, they simply sprinkled some of their fairy dust of time on the theory and made it work. When it came to the origin of life and the huge problem of probability, they simple used their fairy dust and say that with enough time anything is possible, even life coming from non-life. Now, that is a greater miracle than having someone resurrected from the dead. The more astonishing thing is that these folks tell us they do not believe in miracles. However, they do believe in fairy dust.

We have some magicians, or should I say scientists, who now are saying that, given enough time, something can even come from nothing. Now, this is the ultimate magic trick, for if the big bang created space-time, it means that there was no fairy dust (time) before the big bang or the beginning of the universe. So what we have is a rabbit being pulled out of a hat without any fairy dust. How could this be? You cannot work miracles without the fairy dust of time. Well, when you run out of fairy dust, there is only one thing to do; create a brand new kind of fairy dust. The new dust is call necessity dust. This dust is only used when you run out of fairy dust and any or all reasonable answers. Necessity dust is made up of convoluted and nonsensical theories which have the appearance of intellectual vitality but in actuality is nothing more than nonsense. However, it often works if the audience wants to be deceived.[2]

In recent years science has run out of time in this universe. In other words, they have run out of fairy dust when it was discovered that the universe had a beginning. The time in our universe can only be stretched so far for it has a beginning and an end. So what can they do? They must make some more fairy dust. Now, that is a tall order. How in the world can you make more fairy dust of time? Well, like most magic, you dream it up. You make another universe or a multi-verse. Remember the story of Peter Pan. Peter lived in Never Never Land. Then there is Alice, who lived in Wonderland. Both worlds had an abundance of fairy dust. The big question is, can the scientific imagination create another worlds or universes to get more fairy dust to prove their theories? I think the answer is yes, for they have come up with a multi-universe theory (string theory) which does not have one shred of scientific evidence to support it. Yet, it is embraced by a consensus of scientists. However, its creation is a matter of necessity. For without it there is no more fairy dust, which means everyone wants to believe in it whether real or not. For what in the world would we believe in if we ran out fairy dust? Maybe God? Of course, science got rid of the God of gaps[3] and replaced Him with fairy dust. So now, where shall they go? Never, Never Land or maybe Alice’s Wonderland?

Some will charge me with being anti-scientific. However, I vehemently deny this charge. What I am against is pseudoscience that claims to be science and the men who abuse science, making it into something it is not. I especially am against those who attempt to use science to prove that there is no God and in so doing, subvert true science to support their unbelief.

For those true believers in scientism, let me challenge you to read Lee Smolin’s book, The Trouble with Physics, which is an objective view of the string theory.[4] I read Smolin’s book after writing this paper and found his book to confirm much of my thinking about the string theory and other new theories of modern science. The book is worth reading solely for its in-depth study of the history of the string theory.

[1] Lewis, C.S. The Abolition of Man

[2] In 1996, American physicist Alan Sokal submitted a paper loaded with nonsensical jargon to the journal Social Text in which he argued that quantum gravity is a social and linguistic construct. You can read the paper on the internet. When the journal published it, Sokal revealed that the paper was in fact a spoof. The incident triggered a storm of debate about the ethics of Sokal’s prank. However, the truth was that the debate was about whether or not it was right to show how easy many scientist are deceived.

[3] “The claim that, given time, science will explain everything is simply the atheist’s version of the God of the gaps. The gaps in our knowledge can be plugged, they say, by future (but as yet unknown) scientific advances; thus the God of the gaps is simply replaced by the future science of the gaps–same gaps, different deity. It’s what philosopher of science Karl Popper called “promissory materialism.” (Who Made God? Searching for a Theory of Everything by Edgar Andrew)

[4] Lee Smolin is a theoretical physicist who has made influential contributions to the search for a unification of physics. He is a founding faculty member of the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics. His previous books include: The Life of the Cosmos and Three Roads to Quantum.