Once upon a time in a distant town, there lived two men, brothers to one another. One was a priest, and the other was a scholar.
Both men were masters of their respective trades. The priest was as knowledgeable regarding the holy scriptures as one can get, and the scholar had the arts and sciences wrapped around his fingers.
The priest believed that the guidance of the Lord was sovereign, and that only in the word of God could the truth be found.
Very similarly and yet very differently, the scholar believed science and logic ruled over everything else, and that unless one followed the path of reason one could not reach the truth.
The two brothers never spoke with one another-- and that was probably a good thing, as their viewpoints were in drastic contrast.
Until one eventful day, when the two happened to sit at adjacent tables at a restaurant for dinner.
At first the two brothers did not acknowledge one another. The waiter came to the priest's table first.
"What would you like for dinner, sir?"
"I would like the fish and chips platter with a glass of merlot, please."
"We'll have that right out to you."
"Thank you, sir, and do remember that only with the Lord in your heart can truth be sought."
Then the same waiter approached the scholar's table. The scholar couldn't have helped but overhear the priest's final remark.
"And what would you like, sir?"
"I'll take the veggie burger with fries and a glass of Pepsi. And don't listen to that man over there; only with a mind full of logic and reason can you find the truth."
"Very well, sir."
As soon as the waiter had left, the priest turned his attention to the scholar.
"I dare say, what did you mean by that bit you told the waiter about not listening to me?"
"Was I not correct? It takes science and logic to discover the world's truths."
"You were not correct. It takes faith and belief in God to discover the truth."
"Balderdash! Science has uncovered lots of truths. Take the rainbow at the end of a rainy day. It has proven to be a trick of light, caused by the sunlight distorted by--"
"Bite your tongue! It clearly states in the scriptures that the rainbow is an assurance from God that--"
"I am not finished! How dare you interrupt me!"
The priest and the scholar argued long into the night. The priest deconstructed many of the scholar's truths by showing how the holy texts debunked them, and the scholar in turn showed how logically unsound the priest's truths were. Even when their food was served, they did not look away from one another.
Finally the night passed, and the priest and scholar were forced to leave the restaurant due to its closing. The brothers went their own separate ways, still bitter at one another.
But neither left unscathed.
Those who attended the priest's next sermon, or the scholar's next speech at the university, would say that both speeches were somehow devoid of strength. Somehow, doubt had wormed its way into the minds of both brothers.
The priest stared at the holy texts in front of him, wondering if indeed the scholar had a point and there was too little logic to them for them to have any power. The scholar could not face his scientific notes without contemplating whether the priest's explanations of how unholy they were indeed ruined their credibility.
The priest's faith had damaged the scholar's reason, and the scholar's reason had damaged the priest's faith.
Both brothers resigned from their positions on the same day, as they were too clouded by doubt to hold them as they once had. Not even a week later, both were discovered dead in their homes, having committed suicide within less than an hour of one another.
A double funeral was held for the two brothers. They were buried side by side, with engraved tombstones discussing their life and death.
HERE LIES A SKILLED PRIEST WELL VERSED IN THE FAITH BUT DEFEATED BY SCIENCE.
HERE LIES A MASTERFUL SCHOLAR WELL VERSED IN THE SCIENCES BUT DEFEATED BY FAITH.