Scientific reasoning is offering up new challenges to religion in the present century. Religious views of the world have been challenged strongly since Darwin’s publication of The Origin of Species in1859. Now scientific problems like global warming and regimes that mix politics with religion have led many to doubt the global utility of religion. Some of the newer publications are not atheistic but antitheist, since they argue against the view of the Judeo-Christian-Islamic tradition that proclaims that God not only exists, but is a loving God who intervenes in human history by answering prayers and performing miracles.
It is a time of religious ferment in the United States. This may be true of any time period, but it seems especially true now. The battle over whether to teach Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution in the schools or whether to teach creationism — now called “Intelligent Design” — continues, even though that battle was fought in Dayton, Tennessee, in “The Scopes Monkey Trial” some eighty years ago. The Ten Commandments have often been removed from public places by court order.