Fifty years ago World War II had just ended and mankind had awakened to a new hope. The genius that had produced such amazing weapons of destruction could now be directed toward happier pursuits—the preservation of the peace, political stability, and worldwide prosperity. Let us for a moment try to imagine ourselves transported back to that hopeful moment in history. And let us suppose that we were given a selective view through a window of eternity into the future up to the year 2000.
In the unfolding panorama before us we could not see the actual coming events themselves. We were allowed only to see the incredible technological developments that science would produce in the next 50 years. On that basis we were asked to predict the social, moral, and spiritual impact that such unprecedented advances would have upon mankind.
Peering wide-eyed into the future, we saw a new tool of science called a computer. This piece of electronic wizardry would create an explosion of scientific knowledge providing in mere hours far more data than past generations had labored for centuries to uncover. We saw the amazing progress that would come in all fields of science, developments which had once been only fantasy, from the transplanting of human organs and cloning to men walking on the moon and space probes reaching throughout our solar system and beyond.
Given this preview of exploding scientific knowledge, and considering the longstanding antagonism between science and religion, it would have seemed logical to predict a bleak future for any form of spirituality. With science answering all questions and providing seemingly unlimited possibilities, religion would surely be relegated to the scrap heap of history once and for all. No one except a few uneducated religious diehards with misplaced loyalty to past superstitions would have any lingering interest in the realm of the spirit!