Te Deum laudamus, te Dominum confitemur…

I think I was already in my twenties before it occurred to me that people in this country – the UK – and the rest of the civilised world do not mix science and religion.

In Nigeria, primary school saw us studying both Bible Knowledge and sciences. In secondary school it was Christian Religious Knowledge followed by Biology or Physics or Chemistry. The atom was still the smallest indivisible particle and we lapped it all up like dogs –  or soaked it up like sponges. It is part of the amazing Nigerian ability to hold on to two totally contradicting ideologies. We didn’t care. We rendered to Caesar what was his and to God we gave his/her due.

So which is it? Are we a product of evolution or children of dust and wind and in my case, some dude’s bone? (There is a feminist argument here but I shall ignore that for another day!) When ‘darkness was on the face of the deep’ was that the beginning of the universe? Did the words ‘Let there be light’ cause the Big Bang?

I’ve discussed my ideas of God with Hubs, two bloggers; Carmen McCain and Elnathan John as well as one deeply christian friend with a failed blog (I’m looking at you). I have a lot of questions, but I will say this; I am not arrogant as to believe that we are alone in the whole universe.

While I crawl out of my bellybutton, here’s a bit of Te Deum Laudamus for you to enjoy. I’ve been thinking about my years as a chorister in secondary school. There might or might not be a story to come from this angle.

We praise thee, O God :
    we acknowledge thee to be the Lord.
All the earth doth worship thee :
    the Father everlasting.
To thee all Angels cry aloud :
    the Heavens, and all the Powers therein.
To thee Cherubim and Seraphim :
    continually do cry,
Holy, Holy, Holy :
    Lord God of Sabaoth;
Heaven and earth are full of the Majesty :
    of thy glory.
The glorious company of the Apostles : praise thee.
The goodly fellowship of the Prophets : praise thee.
The noble army of Martyrs : praise thee.
The holy Church throughout all the world :
    doth acknowledge thee;
The Father : of an infinite Majesty;
Thine honourable, true : and only Son;
Also the Holy Ghost : the Comforter.
Thou art the King of Glory : O Christ.
Thou art the everlasting Son : of the Father.
When thou tookest upon thee to deliver man :
    thou didst not abhor the Virgin’s womb.
When thou hadst overcome the sharpness of death :
    thou didst open the Kingdom of Heaven to all believers.
Thou sittest at the right hand of God : in the glory of the Father.
We believe that thou shalt come : to be our Judge.
We therefore pray thee, help thy servants :
    whom thou hast redeemed with thy precious blood.
Make them to be numbered with thy Saints : in glory everlasting.

O Lord, save thy people :
    and bless thine heritage.
Govern them : and lift them up for ever.
Day by day : we magnify thee;
And we worship thy Name : ever world without end.
Vouchsafe, O Lord : to keep us this day without sin.
O Lord, have mercy upon us : have mercy upon us.
O Lord, let thy mercy lighten upon us :
    as our trust is in thee.
O Lord, in thee have I trusted :
    let me never be confounded.

5 thoughts on “Te Deum laudamus, te Dominum confitemur…

  1. Very interesting. The arguement keeps getting stronger as I hear more and more people over there try to discredit the Unchangeable Changer.

  2. I love these old songs that come to you years later, singing to you in your head. The secondary choir song that always comes to me is “The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make his face to shine upon you, and give you peace, and give you peace….”

    I think the problem with too much thinking this days is the “either/or” mentality, when of course it is so much likely to be some combination of “both/and.” I think Christian thinkers like Augustine and more recently C.S. Lewis were better at expressing these mysteries which are not incompatible with science–they just tend to go beyond them–truth on another plane of existence, where metaphor takes shape.

  3. i am a scientist and also a christian, however this is an argument that i never enjoy getting into…..especially now that i am far away from motherland….people want to make you doubt your faith..sometimes u end up losing a few friends who are too shallow minded…..nobody wins in the end…

    ON ANOTHER NOTE:…..Happy Birthday Nwunye….Hope the day is turning out the way u planned…wishing you many more wonderful years……

  4. Religion can be deeply personal, especially as the depths of conviction can be as firmly rooted in the one who has faith, and the one who doesn’t. Does conviction trump reality? What is reality? That’s for Man to ponder…each individual wears his conviction like a garment, as long as they don’t go about yanking off the one the other is wearing.

    The one who believes his garment is the proper reflection of reality and would prefer that his garment be the pervasive one, should appeal to his neighbour’s conviction while bearing in mind the answer to his appeal may be yes or no.

    So when the neighbour relinquishes his, swapping it for the ‘superior’ argument, his free will to choose is not trampled upon either by harsh words or at the point of viciousness.

    Don’t mind me, your post got me thinking, a bit too much for this time of the day. Great blog.

  5. I got into that argument sometimes last yr and ended up losing the friend who was very atheist. I do believe there are some compatible truths from the two but alas…the hegemony remains

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