Science seduces with its newness, and pretends to distance itself from old time religion with its replication and verification doctrine, whereby everything that matters is reproducible by multiple scientists. This is in great contrast to both alchemy and fundamental mystical experience. Only Moses talked to a burning bush; no one replicated that experience.
With the exception of quantum mechanics, science completely misses the inherent duality of our universe. If a group of experiences can be replicated, say measuring the speed of light or the double slit experiment, then another group of experiences, say mystical, alchemical or LSD trips, cannot be replicated. These two groups are a polarity. Between them is a host of experiences between the two poles. For instance: in the mid-17th century Isaac Newton and Gottfried Leibniz independently invented calculus. All new thoughts originate outside our sphere (you’ll have to trust me on this). In the 1600s relatively few people had the necessary antennae to pick up the newly emanating thought of calculus; I doubt Newton and Liebniz were the only ones, but they are the two who successfully acted upon and disseminated the idea. Most people alive at that time could not have picked up on the idea; their antennae were not configured to pick up so rarefied a signal.
Science, in not understanding duality and the necessary presence of paradox, is forced to exhibit paradox as a self-negating feature of its status as a religion. Here’s how it does it: on the one hand, science boasts of its ability to alter its view as new theories arise and are confirmed with multiple independent testing. This is the cornerstone of its apparent superiority and contrast to religion. They take great pleasure in mocking previous scientific theories (the Earth is flat, the Sun revolves around the Earth, etc.) even as they set forth the current theory as gospel.
Science’s success is largely due to their pragmatic approach. Whatever works is ensconced as gospel. If rocketry puts satellites in orbit, if antibiotics kill bacteria, then science takes credit and expands its adherents. However, the pragmatism of science does not look at the long term. It is in bed with the capitalist and the lovers of novelty; neither group gives a rat’s ass about the long term.
In 2010 73,620,748,816 standard units of antibiotics were consumed. This is a 35% increase from consumption in 2000. It is entirely possible to view farms and hospitals as experiments to determine how strong and antibiotic resistant a bacteria can be created. That’s not the intention, but in duality there is always an equal and opposite response to all actions. On the surface (where the religion of science excels) antibiotics were a feather in the cap of science, but a deeper, longer term view reveals the error of their ways.
And so goes the story of science as it routinely excoriates the errors of its past while planting its flag in the current theory evangelized by its priests. In this land of absurdity there is no question for which they have no answer. When they do not have an answer they simply make one up. Such is the provenance of the Big Bang Theory as well as the Dark Matter Theory. While looking backward it’s clear that the dearest theories of the past are repeatedly repudiated, yet there is no room for humility about the current theories which, presumably, will be dutifully repudiated in the future. The only reason they get away with this snake oil approach to religion is that engineering sees to it that short-term pragmatism holds our attention. Like the bankers who borrow from the future to improve the present, so too does the religion of science improve the present while the real cost lies buried in the future.
This is why people have always bought religion. It gives meaning where no meaning is found, and it gives optimism where no hope is found. The new god is matter. Scientist are its priests and whores, profit-mongers oversee its administration and everyone else is its dutiful devotee. Matter, like everything in duality, has its polar opposite. In ignoring this, the devotees of science show themselves to be a particularly absurd sort of religious practitioner.