Yesterday I saw a movie about Ireland in the beginning of the previous century (“Jimmy’s Hall”, recommended). True it had also some political contents, left-right and all that, but lots of religious stuff. You’re “evil” if you’re “anti-Christ”. You’re banned from society if you don’t believe Jesus is the son of God.
The beginning of the 21st century is more “enlightened” in some ways. I would think people can safely be atheists in Ireland nowadays. Still this is far from being the case worldwide, let alone in places such as under ISIS control. It wouldn’t even feel safe to talk about basic truths such as evolution in places like Iran. Not even in the ultra-orthodox neighborhoods of Jerusalem.
So the question really hit my mind: Zooming out in time… do we live in a bubble? Will the 20th and 21st century be some sort of an exceptional period of time, where many people knew better? Will scientists be doomed again some hundred years away from now? Or perhaps just the opposite – technology and communications will make it possible for most people to wake up? Will we go back to global darkness or spread more light?
This is a difficult question, and one can come up with arguments justifying both results. In practice it may even be a zigzag game where things get temporarily better in one place, but then get worse when taken over by others coming from elsewhere (e.g., Europe and Islam).
The good news? We’ll all be extinct, eventually. Jesus or no Jesus. Sunnis and Shiites. Orthodox Jews and Reform Jews. Hindus also. The bad news? Scientists and secular people are the only ones who really know that.