One of the most interesting examples of how a man can see what he wants to see, how a man’s will affects his mind and vision, is the case of Percival Lowell (1865-1916). He was born into a wealthy, high society Boston family, graduated from Harvard, was a brilliant mathematician and successful businessman, traveled widely in the Far East, learned several languages, and kept company with affluent, influential people. On the Origin of Species was published when Lowell was a boy, and he accepted Darwin’s doctrine wholeheartedly.
He used his wealth to construct an astronomical observatory with a 24-inch telescope in the American west near the Grand Canyon with the objective of proving that life exists on other planets. It was completed in 1894, and from then until his death 22 years later Lowell studied Mars and published reports and books. Eventually he “saw” and named 700 canals on Mars and came to believe that Martians were building canals in an attempt to save their planet. He even deduced many fascinating details about the lives of the Martian aliens.
How could an intelligent, well educated man see canals and alien civilizations that do not exist? The answer is that he saw what he wanted to see. It is the same phenomenon that allows any evolutionist to see evidence for Darwinian evolution when none exists. The Bible explains it as the deceit of the fallen human heart and willful spiritual blindness.
It is possible to believe a lie and to believe it with all of one’s heart. “In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (2 Corinthians 4:4).
(Friday Church News Notes, Aug 3, 2012, www.wayoflife.org, email@example.com, 866-295-4143)