“If the world is just a machine which is bereft of purpose and meaning, then what can there be except terror, hopelessness, and defeat?”
In this sermon of October 29, 1967, Rabbi Olan returns to his core question of science vs. faith. What is there for people to believe in when they are caught between a faith in God that seems to have been made irrelevant by science and a faith in science that robs life of meaning?
He condemns religion when it denies scientific truths, while at the same time characterizing atheism as “the death of the human adventure.”
So what kind of faith does Rabbi Olan suggest in the face of this dilemma? Without giving away the answer, I will say this. I was not surprised when he described it as a “hypothesis.” I was a little surprised when he described it as a “gamble.”
*Written by Joshua F. Hirsch*