‘Science tells us to ­first define our terms. Quakerism says there’s more to life than words.’

Freudian slip? Bob Johnson considers faith and science

An electron escaping its parent atom. | Photo: Courtesy of Schultze/Ossiander.

In The Future of an Illusion, Sigmund Freud used ‘science’ to demolish ‘religion’. Reading this as a teenager really set the cat among the pigeons for me. Was Quakerism doomed? At the time, ‘science’ was transcendent. ‘God’ less so. Exams required us to prove things scientifically. Get that wrong, and your school career withered. But applying the same logic to God earned fewer plaudits. A different type of thinking seemed to be called for.

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