Dinesh D Souza, The Greatness of Christianity: Table of Contents

Cf. Dinesh D’souza, What’s So Great About Christianity, at Amazon

“We shall first try to manifest the truth that faith professes and reason investigates, setting forth demonstrative and probable arguments, so that the truth may be confirmed and the adversary convinced.” —Thomas Aquinas, Summa Contra Gentiles

WE HAVE SEEN IN THE previous chapters how Christianity forms the heart of Western civilization, shaping ideas and institutions that have persisted for two millennia. In the next few chapters I will examine the relationship between Christianity and science. Specifically, I will consider whether there is an inherent antagonism between the two; atheist writers often portray an ongoing war between them. The conflict, Sam Harris writes, is “zero sum.”‘ E. 0. Wilson proclaims it an “insoluble” enmity, and the popular media breathlessly publicizes this theme of combat, as when Time magazine titled its cover story on November 13, 2006, “God vs. Science.”

Yet science as an organized, sustained enterprise arose only once in human history. And where did it arise? In Europe, in the civilization then called Christendom. Why did modern science develop here and nowhere else? In his September 12, 2006, speech in Regensburg, Germany, Pope Benedict XVI argued that it was due to Christianity’s emphasis on the importance of reason. The pope argued that reason is a central distinguishing feature of Christianity. While the Regensburg address became controversial because of the pope’s remarks about Islam, on his point about Christianity and reason he was right. An unbiased look at the history of science shows that modernscience is an invention of medieval Christianity, and that the greatest breakthroughs in scientific reason have largely been the work of Christians. Even atheist scientists work with Christian assumptions that, due to their ignorance of theology and history, are invisible to them.