(More than) a few years ago, part of a tribe of dorm students walking home along the streets of Berkeley after a long night out, one of those amongst us had a sudden moment of clarity. He blurted out his religious epiphany to all who shared the sidewalk, declaring:
“Ice is proof that God exists!”
We all looked at him, and kept walking.
“Gilad, you’re drunk.”
“No listen, ice proves God exists because it floats.”
“It floats! Don’t you see? It proves there’s a God because it floats. Because otherwise it would sink and kill all the fish.”
Being that this was Berkeley and religion was one of the taboo topics, ranking up there with racial background and SAT scores, his drunken state simultaneously forgave and explained his theological slip of the tongue and nothing more was ever said. Almost ten years later, his words came back to me when I stumbled across this account of a Christian science teacher in the Internet. His way of putting this same theory erased the aura of beer that made it sound stupid, instilling it with didactic plausibility:
An example of Doc’s deep faith in God was the question on a quiz which asked: “What is the only chemical known to man which is less dense in a solid state than in a liquid state and why is that important?” The answer is water. Ice floats–if it didn’t, then the oceans of the world would be full of ice at the bottom, and marine life would not exist.
I’m not holy convinced, but it sure sounds better sober. I wish I knew where Gilad was so I could pass this on to him.