Theology is the study of the actions and reactions of the human spirit; it can never become a science since it must always be combined more or less with psychology in its personal expression and with philosophy in its systematic portrayal. Theology is always the study of your religion; the study of another’s religion is psychology.
When man approaches the study and examination of his universe from the outside, he brings into being the various physical sciences; when he approaches the research of himself and the universe from the inside, he gives origin to theology and metaphysics. The later art of philosophy develops in an effort to harmonize the many discrepancies which are destined at first to appear between the findings and teachings of these two diametrically opposite avenues of approaching the universe of things and beings.
Religion has to do with the spiritual viewpoint, the awareness of the insideness of human experience. Man’s spiritual nature affords him the opportunity of turning the universe outside in. It is therefore true that, viewed exclusively from the insideness of personality experience, all creation appears to be spiritual in nature.
When man analytically inspects the universe through the material endowments of his physical senses and associated mind perception, the cosmos appears to be mechanical and energy-material. Such a technique of studying reality consists in turning the universe inside out.
A logical and consistent philosophic concept of the universe cannot be built up on the postulations of either materialism or spiritism, for both of these systems of thinking, when universally applied, are compelled to view the cosmos in distortion, the former contacting with a universe turned inside out, the latter realizing the nature of a universe turned outside in. Never, then, can either science or religion, in and of themselves, standing alone, hope to gain an adequate understanding of universal truths and relationships without the guidance of human philosophy and the illumination of divine revelation.
Always must man’s inner spirit depend for its expression and self-realization upon the mechanism and technique of the mind. Likewise must man’s outer experience of material reality be predicated on the mind consciousness of the experiencing personality. Therefore are the spiritual and the material, the inner and the outer, human experiences always correlated with the mind function and conditioned, as to their conscious realization, by the mind activity. Man experiences matter in his mind; he experiences spiritual reality in the soul but becomes conscious of this experience in his mind. The intellect is the harmonizer and the ever-present conditioner and qualifier of the sum total of mortal experience. Both energy-things and spirit values are colored by their interpretation through the mind media of consciousness.
Your difficulty in arriving at a more harmonious co-ordination between science and religion is due to your utter ignorance of the intervening domain of the morontia world of things and beings. The local universe consists of three degrees, or stages, of reality manifestation: matter, morontia, and spirit. The morontia angle of approach erases all divergence between the findings of the physical sciences and the functioning of the spirit of religion. Reason is the understanding technique of the sciences; faith is the insight technique of religion; mota is the technique of the morontia level. Mota is a supermaterial reality sensitivity which is beginning to compensate incomplete growth, having for its substance knowledge-reason and for its essence faith-insight. Mota is a superphilosophical reconciliation of divergent reality perception which is nonattainable by material personalities; it is predicated, in part, on the experience of having survived the material life of the flesh. But many mortals have recognized the desirability of having some method of reconciling the interplay between the widely separated domains of science and religion; and metaphysics is the result of man’s unavailing attempt to span this well-recognized chasm. But human metaphysics has proved more confusing than illuminating. Metaphysics stands for man’s well-meant but futile effort to compensate for the absence of the mota of morontia.
Metaphysics has proved a failure; mota, man cannot perceive. Revelation is the only technique which can compensate for the absence of the truth sensitivity of mota in a material world. Revelation authoritatively clarifies the muddle of reason-developed metaphysics on an evolutionary sphere.
Science is man’s attempted study of his physical environment, the world of energy-matter; religion is man’s experience with the cosmos of spirit values; philosophy has been developed by man’s mind effort to organize and correlate the findings of these widely separated concepts into something like a reasonable and unified attitude toward the cosmos. Philosophy, clarified by revelation, functions acceptably in the absence of mota and in the presence of the breakdown and failure of man’s reason substitute for mota—metaphysics.
Early man did not differentiate between the energy level and the spirit level. It was the violet race and their Andite successors who first attempted to divorce the mathematical from the volitional. Increasingly has civilized man followed in the footsteps of the earliest Greeks and the Sumerians who distinguished between the inanimate and the animate. And as civilization progresses, philosophy will have to bridge ever-widening gulfs between the spirit concept and the energy concept. But in the time of space these divergencies are at one in the Supreme.
Science must always be grounded in reason, although imagination and conjecture are helpful in the extension of its borders. Religion is forever dependent on faith, albeit reason is a stabilizing influence and a helpful handmaid. And always there have been, and ever will be, misleading interpretations of the phenomena of both the natural and the spiritual worlds, sciences and religions falsely so called.
Out of his incomplete grasp of science, his faint hold upon religion, and his abortive attempts at metaphysics, man has attempted to construct his formulations of philosophy. And modern man would indeed build a worthy and engaging philosophy of himself and his universe were it not for the breakdown of his all-important and indispensable metaphysical connection between the worlds of matter and spirit, the failure of metaphysics to bridge the morontia gulf between the physical and the spiritual. Mortal man lacks the concept of morontia mind and material; and revelation is the only technique for atoning for this deficiency in the conceptual data which man so urgently needs in order to construct a logical philosophy of the universe and to arrive at a satisfying understanding of his sure and settled place in that universe.
Revelation is evolutionary man’s only hope of bridging the morontia gulf. Faith and reason, unaided by mota, cannot conceive and construct a logical universe. Without the insight of mota, mortal man cannot discern goodness, love, and truth in the phenomena of the material world.
When the philosophy of man leans heavily toward the world of matter, it becomes rationalistic or naturalistic. When philosophy inclines particularly toward the spiritual level, it becomes idealistic or even mystical. When philosophy is so unfortunate as to lean upon metaphysics, it unfailingly becomes skeptical, confused. In past ages, most of man’s knowledge and intellectual evaluations have fallen into one of these three distortions of perception. Philosophy dare not project its interpretations of reality in the linear fashion of logic; it must never fail to reckon with the elliptic symmetry of reality and with the essential curvature of all relation concepts.
The highest attainable philosophy of mortal man must be logically based on the reason of science, the faith of religion, and the truth insight afforded by revelation. By this union man can compensate somewhat for his failure to develop an adequate metaphysics and for his inability to comprehend the mota of the morontia.