We Are Not Here By Chance

Good Friday is a good day to share thoughts from two small books I’ve had in my library for a long time. The first, published in 1944, is “Man Does Not Stand Alone.” The second, published in 1962, is “Seven Reasons Why A Scientist Believes In God.” Scientist Abraham Cressy Morrison wrote both books. Morrison was president of the New York Academy of Sciences and the American Institute of the City of New York. He was a member of the Executive Board of the National Research Council, a fellow of the American Museum of Natural History, and a life member of the Royal Institution of Great Britain. Therefore, when he spoke and wrote about matters of the universe, other scientists, as well as laypeople, paid attention. 
His emphasis in these books is that so many conditions are essential to life on earth that they could not exist in proper relationship by chance. He claims the laws of mathematics prove this. Morrison illustrates the unlikelihood of a  “big bang” accident being responsible for things as they are: Suppose you mark ten pennies from one to ten, put them in your pocket, and give them a good shake. Now try to draw them out in sequence from one to ten, putting each coin back in your pocket after each draw, and shuffling them all again. Mathematically, your chance of drawing number one first is one in ten. Your chance of drawing one and two in succession would be one in a hundred. Your chance of drawing one, two, and three in succession would be one in a thousand. The odds continue to build. The chance that you might draw all of them in order would reach the figure of one in ten billion.
Morrison goes on to explain that the conditions on earth are more complicated than drawing the pennies out in order. He spotlights the delicate balance on which our earth depends for its animal, human, and vegetable life. One of the examples he gives is that the earth rotates on its axis at the rate of about one thousand miles an hour. Then he says if it rotated slower, say about one hundred miles an hour, our days and nights would be ten times as long. The hot sun of summer would burn up our vegetation each long day, and every sprout would freeze in such a night.
The sun, upon which all life is dependent, has a surface temperature of twelve thousand degrees Fahrenheit, and our earth is just far enough away that that this eternal fire warms us just enough. It is marvelously stable, and through the years has varied so little that life as we know it has survived. If the temperature on earth had changed so much as fifty degrees on the average for a single year, all vegetation would be dead, along with animals and humans, either roasted or frozen. The earth travels around the sun at the rate of eighteen miles each second. If the rate of revolution had been, say six miles or forty miles each second, we would be too far or too close to the sun for life to exist.
Morrison concludes with saying that reverence, generosity, nobility of character, morality, inspiration, and what may be called the divine attributes, do not arise from atheism or negation, which is a form of self-conceit that puts humans in the place of God. Without faith, the noted scientist claims, civilization would falter, order would become disorder, restraint and control would be lost, and evil would prevail. He challenges us to hold fast to our belief in a Supreme Intelligence, the love of God, and the brotherhood of mankind, lifting ourselves closer to God by doing His will as we know it, and accepting the responsibility of believing that we, as His creation, are worthy of His care.
These are good thoughts to share on Good Friday as we think about the sacrifice made on the day we observe. They are good thoughts to share on Easter as we think about the miracle.
Carl Mays, author of 13 books and speaker at over 3,000 events, can be contacted at carlmays@carlmays.com or 865-436-7478. His books, including A Strategy For Winning, People of Passion, Anatomy Of A Leader, Are We Communicating Yet? and Winning Thoughts, are available in stores, on www.carlmays.com, www.amazon.com, and other Internet locations.

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