Leaping off the Bridge. . .or Not

Once again, naturalist John Burroughs nails the Nature/Super-Nature issue, in The Light of Day from 100 years ago:

“Faith proper begins where reason ends; where reason avails we have no need of faith:  where there is a bridge we do not need to take a leap. . .

Religious faith has to do with the supernatural:  and what can reason or sense do with that which transcends reason and sense?”

“A person cannot reason themselves into religion, though they can reason themselves into religious opinions. . .The demonstrations of science no competent mind can resist, but the demonstrations of religion, its proofs, and its evidences, only impress such minds as are already convinced, as have already taken the leap which faith requires.”

“Religious faith is losing ground in our day because the light which fills the world, begotten by science, education, industry, democracy, is more and more the light of broad noonday, clear, strong, merciless.”

“Show a person that religion is not some far-away thing that they must get, but a vital truth which they live whenever they do a worthy thing.”

Thus speaks the wise sage of the Hudson, John Burroughs.


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