As a kid growing up in Hong Kong where I attended Catholic schools from elementary to junior high, it was mandatory to study Bible History course every year and failing that would mean repeating the school year without advancing to the next grade level, so I spent a great deal of time reading the Bible and memorizing the historical events which was something I hated to do. We were required to attend school Mass and participated in all the rituals such as singing the Hymns and listening to sermons. I was exposed to the western Catholic culture and I simply accepted the requirement while living under the rules of a British Colony. I still have vivid memory of one of my religion teachers who was a very mean woman and she preached constantly in class and one time she even made comments about how believing in other religions such as Buddhism is a lower form of human value which made me a little angry as my beloved father was a Buddhist. Although I do not believe there is a Buddha sitting out somewhere rubbing his big fat tummy, I felt I had the obligation to tell my father what the teacher had said in class because I thought that was rude. The response coming from my father was rather calm and he only informed me that all religions are the same and being a good person in the world is what matters the most. From that point on, I realized that Buddhism was so much more humble compare to the Catholic and all the other western religions which I found very arrogant while my teacher continued preaching the same way year after year which was almost like a form of dictatorship. As I continued to study the Bible history as a compulsory course, I found more and more distasteful about its contents. I simply just memorized the content to pass the exams so I don’t fail the school year, but I really had doubts about the true existence of such an arrogant God. I began to draw a distance from the western religion and really came into questioning about the truths. Is the world really only 6000 years old? My science book tells me that the Earth is about 5 billion years old. Which one was telling me the truth? Do prayers really work? Is there really a place called Hell or just something they tried to scare me? I had lots of unanswered questions about the truths and very often I would have trouble falling asleep due to those mysteries.. Questions like ” how big is the universe?” ” Who created it and why?” ” Is it infinite?” ” If there is a God created the universe, then who created Him?”
After I came to America attending high school in Fremont, ” American High School”,( such a generic name), these unanswered questions were still lingering on my mind. But due to those endless struggles after my father passed away, I just focused on how to survive through college and paying for my own expenses so I could live and I had to put those unanswered questions aside for a long time. But once in a while, I would still write paper about it and pondered about the universe. I developed a strong interest in cosmology, physics and mathematics while in college and decided to take up those courses and pursued with my pondering about the natural world and how it operates based upon the natural laws of physics. By that time, I was completely distant from religion, especially the western religions which I found distasteful and arrogant. I abandoned it all together completely and simply focusing on applying the laws of physics into explaining the origin of life and the universe without invoking any of the Divine Intervention.
Today I am a scientist and continue to investigate those unanswered questions. I discovered that science tells the truths based on hard evidence and we have made tremendous progress in developing the science and technologies in today world. Development in science is incremental in nature and of course we still have a long way to go. As a scientist, I tell the truths, I want to find the truths, and accepting the truths in science is far better than having false hopes in religion. As an educator for so many years, I am really afraid that religion is going to twist the young minds of today and the kids will be exposed to false information and that would be a disadvantage to the future of our society. According to the latest statistics, approximately 60 % of the people in United States believe in the existence of fairies over the theory of evolution and this is scary. There are people still believing that the Earth is only 6000 years old and they are not taught that evolution is the real science which can offer much better explanations about the nature of our world that we live in. Lots of people falsely believe about ” the end of the world” coming soon and relying on some miracles to heal diseases and yet there is no evidence to supporting any of it except false hopes which is very dangerous and it is simply a form of deadly viruses spreading around poisoning the young minds of today. These religious group of people are constantly using their self proclaiming doctrines to gain power and to declare truths but in reality, they are just parasites in the society, twisting and bending the potential young bright minds of today children and some of them are forced into believing the same religion without any saying. All those rituals seem to look fantastic on the outside and they seem to embrace everyone but the hidden effects are deadly. The Supreme court has turned down the teaching of creationism in public schools and that was a great defeat. Kids should be exposed to the real science of evolution, astronomy, biology, etc to learn about the truths. Of course we can’t pretend that science has the answers to everything, but just because we can’t explain all of the mysteries, it does not mean we have to turn to the book of Revelation to find the answers and if that was the case for the last 500 years, we would never have developed the science of modern medicines to prolong lives and curing many of the diseases today.
In science, we cannot disprove the existence of God. However, we can show that God is not needed at all to explain how the universe came about including the origin of life on Earth. In the 21st century, the beliefs in a Supreme Being and all the supernatural phenomena should be discarded because they don’t serve any good and only creating more problems and conflicts even among their own religious doctrines. As a scientist, I want to find the answers, to seek the truths and to make the world a better place to live for everyone. As an educator, I hope to see that young kids be exposed to real science and find out the truths about the world that we all live in, and in the future, they will make the world a better place for everyone. As for myself, I am glad that I am drawn away from all of the twisted religious beliefs and simply accepted the world as it is today. I try to be a better person because that is the basic humanistic value and morality is emerged, not something being planted in our atoms. At the deepest level of understanding natural science, there are no meanings and purposes to life and the universe certainly does not have any purposes of being here. We need to create our own purposes and meanings to fulfilling our lives because we only live once. This is the only time we have and the only show we can run and our lives are limited. We should treasure it, build fond memories and pass on to the next generation so this process can continue to better the world. Make every moment a magical one because we have limited heartbeats within our life time, 3 billions on the average. As Dr Sean Carroll said ( Cal Tech Cosmologist and senior Researcher) 3 billion heartbeats, the clock is ticking.