Everything– every element of reality- is interdependent/interconnected (i.e., everything is connected- as one great big, united force). As such, science should not be considered as ‘separate’ from religion, and vice versa. Why? Because reality, including our own existence, is so much more complex than any one school of thought allows. And, it is certainly more complex than objective scientific materialism allows, that’s for sure.
You see, the problem with holding a solely scientific view towards life is that, such a radical scientific materialistic way of thinking has the potential to lead to nihilism (being of the belief that life is meaningless), as we see ourselves as nothing other than random biological creatures as opposed to what we truly are from a spiritual perspective- ‘special beings endowed with the dimension of consciousness and moral capacity.’
If we really are nothing other than matter (i.e., random particles) as science so often tells us that we are, then where do all our other dimensions that constitute the human experience come from? Our creativity/desire to make art, spirituality, ethics, goodness, beauty and, above all else, consciousness? They do not- they can not- simply arise from chemical reactions. Saying that they do would be like saying that we (human beings) are nothing more than biological machines, the products of pure chance in the random combination of genes, with no purpose other than the biological imperative of reproduction.. This, of course, isn’t what we are. No- our body and mind are in fact two separate entities, with our body being physical, and our mind being non-physical. Consciousness (i.e., our mind) is everlasting and will continue to exist long after the body deteriorates. The body is merely a vessel used to contain/sustain the consciousness. It is our consciousness that allows us to conceptualise our body and all material substance. Without our consciousness, we would be oblivious to our existence.
And so, you see, there is far more to human existence and to reality than current science could ever give us access to, which is why we have to look at it with spirituality, too, as scientific study is limited to the physical world/it does not take the spiritual world into account.
Failing to consider both science and spirituality when debating the age old question of what this- life– is all about, would be like only completing half of a jigsaw puzzle. It would fail to exhaust all aspects of reality- in particular the nature of human existence.. To see the full picture you have to complete both half’s (that being science and spirituality), even when the latter half is not so straightforward or obvious to observe as the former…
If you ever find yourself questioning whether spirituality is ‘real’ because you can’t see it in the same way that you can see the material world, just remember that; ‘not seeing a thing is not the same as seeing its non existence.’ For example, not seeing acid in the paper on which a book is printed is not the same as seeing that the paper is acid free, because to see acid in the paper one might require special tools other than the naked eye. Similarly, the fact that, in science, we have not found life on any planet but our own does not prove that life does not exist elsewhere. And, the fact that science has not proven the existence of God does not mean that God does not exist.
In fact, the idea that there is no spiritual dimension/no God like ‘creator’ to our existence is more of a farfetched assumption than the alternative– the belief that spirituality and God are real. How so? Well, just consider the difference between a non-sentient being like a rock, and a sentient being like a human. From a totally scientific perspective/a perspective that focuses solely on the material basis of both subjects, it could be concluded that, at the most fundamental level, there is no qualitative difference between them, as the material basis of the sentient and the non-sentient is the same. Just as a rock is constituted by an aggregation of material particles, so too is the human body. Indeed, the entire cosmos and all the matter in it are made from the same ‘stuff’, all of which is endlessly recycled. The question then, a question that only a combination of science and spirituality can attempt to answer, is; ‘What makes a human body so different from a rock that it can support life and consciousness?’ (Consciousness being the primary characteristic of life, and something that all sentient beings have, albeit in different levels of complexity).
The reason why I believe that it is of paramount importance for us to be asking the above question, and for us to be, ultimately, appreciating the role of spirituality, is due to us living in an increasingly materialistic world…
Instead of constantly striving for material possessions in the hope that buying ‘stuff’ will bring us happiness, we need to understand the transient nature of life itself, remembering that life is constantly changing, that nothing lasts forever/everything is impermanent…
We need to remember that;
Material things won’t bring us true peace and joy/fulfillment, because they will all, one day, come to an end. Only our spirit is truly capable of bringing us what we so desperately long for- peace, joy, and fulfillment. Because, our spirit? It is indestructible.