“The Firmament Sheweth His Handiwork”: Re-awakening a Religious Sense of the Natural Order

Harry Oldmeadow

To describe the futility of a purely materialistic science, Shankara compares it to an attempt to explain night and day without reference to the Sun. In other words, the study of the natural world is not primarily an empirical business, although it does, of course, have an empirical dimension: matter does not exist independently and its nature cannot be understood in purely material terms. This is the great dividing line between the sacred sciences of the traditional worlds and the Promethean science of our own time.

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Originally published in Seeing God Everywhere: Essays on Nature and the Sacred, Bloomington: World Wisdom, 2003.

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