role of the arts

I came across an intriguing statement on spacecollective.com:

Amidst the attention given to the sciences as how they can lead to the cure of all diseases and daily problems of mankind, I believe that the biggest breakthrough will be the realization that the arts, which are conventionally considered
useless,
will be recognized as the whole reason why we ever try to live longer or live more prosperously.

John Maeda via The universe will fly like a bird

Certainly I am amused by the confidence of this quote and its support of the arts, yet I must emphatically challenge it. Maeda neglects the importance and reality of religion and its role in the fabric of humanity. Living “more prosperously” for many involves a dedication to religion which wholely guides and inspires life.

Secondly, it will be difficult for society to reach an epiphany that the arts is why we “try to live longer and live more prosperously” when entertainment is what currently drives society, not science. Reading Maeda’s quote literally suggests that our world is driven by those who dedicate their spiritual lives to science when in actuality that percentage of the population is a small few.