Friday, 4 November 2005

The simplest explanation

Tectonic plates, global warming and so on are difficult concepts for the layman to grasp, and many look to religion or philosophy rather than science to explain why appalling things happen to innocent people. Methodological reductionism (Occam's Razor), a principle often argued over, giving rise to acrimony or even fisticuffs in playground and pub, suggests that the simplest theory is always the right one, and perhaps the best non-technical answer to the question Why earthquakes? was given by, of all people, Winston Churchill’s son Randolph.
During the second world war Evelyn Waugh and Lord Birkenhead were holed up with him in what used to be Yugoslavia. They soon tired of his noisy drunkenness, so to keep him quiet they each bet him £10 that he could not read the Bible in a fortnight. He accepted the bet, and after some days could be heard saying from time to time in tones of awed admiration: "God, isn't God a shit?"

6 comments:

Minerva said...

What a wonderful story.. Still in awe at the researcher in you. Definitely a wasted opportunity,

Minerva

Davo said...

While we are contemplating 'gods' purpose, has anyone wondered about the dimishing Gulf Stream?

Minerva said...

Or the polar ice cap? Is it possible that the world is just one ice cube in God's gin and tonic?

Minerva

Tony said...

I thought this post would provoke angry responses from assorted believers, and what I got was these constructive comments from some blaspheming friends.
I guess that after some earlier exchanges, now deleted, godly people keep well clear of OMF.

Elizabeth said...

OK Buster, have your little joke, but remember that the fear of the LORD prolongeth days, but the years of the wicked shall be shortened,
Come visit with me some time.

. said...

This lengthy discussion reminds me of the time I stayed up all night with the dyslexic atheistic insomniac who kept wondering if there really was a dog.