From ancient byways to modern highways, glimpses of faith are everywhere...

Monday, August 27, 2012

Neil Armstrong: Religion secondary to faith

Neil Armstrong  (NASA photo)
Back in the late 1950s, Neil Armstrong decided to become a Boy Scout leader.  When filling out the application to do so at his local Methodist church, Armstrong was asked about his religious affiliation.  His reply:  Deist.

According to Wikipedia, Deism "is a philosophy which holds that reason and observation of the natural world, without the need for organized religion, can determine that the universe is the product of a creator."  The word "deism" was part of a 1675 English dictionary, and was used in English print as early as 1621.  During the 17th and 18th centuries (aka "Age of Enlightenment"), Deism came into its own with European and American intellectuals.  Christians "who found they could not believe in supernatural miracles, the inerrancy of scriptures, or the Trinity, but who did believe in one God" embraced it.

Nevertheless, rumors persist that Armstrong, while walking on the moon, heard the Muslim call to prayer and subsequently converted to Islam. presents a 1983 letter, "authorized by Neil Armstrong," which denies this claim.  This letter asserts that "the reports of his [Armstrong's] conversion to
Islam and of hearing the voice of Adzan [the Islamic call to prayer] on the moon and elsewhere are all untrue."  The US State Department also released a memo to this effect.

The Telegraph not only reports that both of Armstrong's parents were "extremely devout," but also explains that "Neil Armstrong later professed no explicit religious beliefs."


Copyright August 27, 2012 by Linda Van Slyke   All Rights Reserved

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