I’m an engineer. When I work I use my dozen years of engineering education and dozen or so years of engineering experience and creativity to assess a problem, develop strategies for a solution, and then implement that solution.
In assessing a problem, I look at the physical symptoms of a problem, I collect tangible data about whatever I am studying, I push systems to they boundary conditions and examine performance.
When determining one more more possible solutions for a problem I look at what other people have done and specifically what their results were. I may try a few things to see if parts of one solution or another might work.
When I implement a solution I check to see if it worked under normal conditions, I check to see if operating conditions change that my solution is superior to the original implementation, or at least the same.
Then I learn from my mistakes. If I designed something poorly the first time, I want to be sure I understood why it was poor so that I can avoid doing it again.
All of these efforts require strong attention to physical, measurable results. It all requires that I don’t pretend something will just work because I want it to. It requires that I check to see if my assumptions are correct.
Why am I telling you this? Because I am continually amazed when I hear about superstitious engineers, particularly religious ones, and of those, particularly young earth, bible thumping ones.
The other day, I was looking for a simple relay board that would switch 1 amp load when signaled from my tiny digital signals from my microcontroller. Pretty straight forward. I had a bunch of other requirements also. Well I found what I was looking for from Winford Engineering. They make a bunch of boards that are good for prototyping designs, so I got a few of their relay boards.
They work fine.
But I got a little present with my boards. A little pamphlet, entitled “Facts to Face”. Hmm. I wonder what facts are so important that they would send it along with my order? What am I missing or so unknowledgeable about that someone at Winford felt that they must pass along this vital information. Global Warming? Crime Prevention? Suicide?
Well apparently the first fact is that I need to be saved. This fact is quoted from some where called Romans. These guys, without knowing one thing about me presume I have sinned by some standard known only to them. Apparently I’m gonna die from this sin disease. Why can’t they just write in readable English?
The second fact is that I can’t save myself! What? I can help myself, and when I can’t I have friends and profressionsals that can… but not from this mysterious sin that they tell me about. Oh Noes!
God’s Son died to save me? Wait, I thought he was resurrected. So he didn’t really die did he? So this dude has been alive floating around for two thousand years and I am supposed to feel bad that he spent a few days strung up. Hey, tell you what, show me modern evidence that I can live forever and I will also happily be strung up to a cross for 3 measly days. Not really much of a sacrifice is it?
The next fact is that God apparently shows me how to be saved. Looks like if I want eternal life, then all I have to do is…you know.. be gods son. I mean really, has anyone actually visited this heaven place? How do we know there isn’t just one person there. Someone send me a photo!
The next fact that I need to hear about is that if I believe in god, he will forgive my nonexistent sins. Whew! that is good to know! But look at that! I can do all things through Christ! That's weird, I don;t even know what that means. Can I do some things through horse? Seems to me that I can do all things through work and learning.
Fact #6 tells me that Christian should be working for God. I would like to know how much God pays per hour. I mean with no actual guarantee that he is there, seems to me that I’d like something tangible now. Good thing I am not a Christian, I guess I am free form this work paid by IOUs.
I got a giggle that they sent this to me. I was at a loss to understand why they would send this out. So I asked.
Is it a company policy to send along religious paraphernalia with
shipments or is someone in your shipping department doing this for you?
I got a response pretty quickly
Yes, this is our company policy. The three owners of the company
(myself being one) all believe the Bible is true, and God's Word, and we
hope our customers will take a minute to evaluate the claims of the
Bible. So, it is our policy to include this in the first order we send
to each of our customers.
I will never order from them again.
Its not that they are religious. I don’t care what they do on their own time. Who am I to comment on their shared delusion? No, I won’t order from them for two reasons: I find it insulting for them to tell me, by way of a dumb pamphlet, that they think I am one way or another without knowing me. The presumption! But more importantly, I won’t order from them because they have clearly demonstrated that they are willing to make extremely important decisions about themselves, about their lives and about other people based on nothing other than some dumb book and the cultish blathering of those who follow it. If I need to return something will they tell me that God told them not to take it? If I need them to fix something will they pray for it to get better?
I don’t really care that they sent this pamphlet. I just think its a dumb business practice. It won’t convert anyone, and people who already believe that nonsense already have a bible. They are just wasting money, and doing nothing. Its not like relay boards are that hard to find (or make).