The Religion of Scientism


As presented by Dr. Stephen Jay Gould

At Southwestern University, Georgetown Texas,

February 1990.


Note: Dr. Gould did not use either “religion” or "scientism" in his talk.



A.   All life, including humanity, is contingency (chance).


      1. Natural cause and effect is the only possible explanation.

      2. We are here only because of very improbable accidents.



B.   We are totally autonomous.


      1. Our destiny is up to us.

      2. Life's meaning is up to us.

      3. Ultimately, life's destiny and meaning are null concepts.



C.   Everything is relative.


      1. There are no absolutes, except what we define.

      2. There are no moralities, except what we define.

      3. Science has the only answers that mean anything.



D.   Life is temporal.


      1. Death is the end.

      2. Ultimately, all is in vain.



John W. Burgeson,