“Though the scientist may individually nourish a religion and be a theist in his irresponsible hours, the days are over when it could be said that for Science herself the heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament showeth his handiwork. Our solar system, with its harmonies, is seen now as but one passing case of a certain sort of moving equilibrium in the heavens, realized by a local accident in an appalling wilderness of worlds where no life can exist. In a span of time which as a cosmic interval will count as but an hour, it will have ceased to be. The Darwinian notion of chance production, and subsequent destruction, speedy or deferred, applies to the largest as well as the smallest facts. It is impossible, in the present temper of the scientific imagination, to find in the drifting of the cosmic atoms, whether they work on the universal or on the particular scale, anything but a kind of aimless weather, doing and undoing, achieving no proper history, and leaving no result. Nature has no one distinguishable ultimate tendency with which it is possible to feel a sympathy. In the vast rhythm of her processes, as the scientific mind now follows them, she appears to cancel herself. The bubbles on the foam which coats a stormy sea are floating episodes, made and unmade by the forces of the wind and water. Our private selves are like those bubbles, – epiphenomena, as Clifford, I believe, ingeniously called them; their destinies weigh nothing and determine nothing in the world’s irremedial currents of events.” -William James, Varieties of Religious Experience
“You might decide simply to have as good a time as possible. The universe is a universe of nonsense, but since you are here, grab what you can. Unfortunately, however, there is, on these terms, so very little left to grab – only the coarsest sensual pleasures. You can’t, except in the lowest animal sense, be in love with a girl if you know (and keep on remembering) that all the beauties both of her person and of her character are a momentary and accidental pattern produced by the collision of atoms, and that your own response to them is only a sort of psychic phosphorescence arising from the behavior of your genes. You can’t go on getting any very serious pleasure from music if you know and remember that its air of significance is a pure illusion, that you like it only because your nervous system is irrationally conditioned to like it. You may still, in the lowest sense, have a “good time”; but just in so far as it becomes very good, just in so far as it ever threatens to push you on from cold sensuality into real warmth and enthusiasm and joy, so far you will be forced to feel the hopeless disharmony between your own emotions and the universe in which you really live.” – C.S. Lewis, “On Living in an Atomic Age”
“Man’s chief end is to glorify God“
- So that we know our chief end ought not be earthly things, which we may never get, or shall never satisfy our souls.
- It corrects us
- When we don’t use our lives for the glory of God
- When our chief consideration in life is our own glory
- When we oppose God’s glory.
- It calls us to make God’s glory our chief.
- Magistrates ought to pursue it.
- Ministers ought to promote it.
- Masters of family must lead their families in this.
“Man’s chief end is to enjoy God for ever.”
In this life
- For seeing the wickedness of making enjoyment of this age our chief end.
- Enjoy God in his ordinances of worship
In the age to come
- Enjoy God now that we may enjoy him hereafter.
- Let it spur us to duty to do these things now.
- In sorrow now, there is a day coming of pure enjoyment in God.
Body of Divinity, 6-26
“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour, and that one, is what we are doing.” -Annie Dillard
“You cannot have it both ways. If the world is meaningless, then so are we; if we mean something, we do not mean alone.” -C.S. Lewis, The Personal Heresy
“If you have your why for your life, you can get by with almost any how.” – Friedrich Nietzsche