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Avatar Samantha Ai

Religion & Science Are Closer Than You Think

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He looked really uneasy. I'd just finished giving my first lecture of 8.282, MIT's freshman astronomy course, but this one student stayed behind in my classroom. He nervously explained that although he liked the subject, he worried that my teaching conflicted with his religion. I asked him what his religion was, and when I told him that it had officially declared there to be no conflict with Big Bang cosmology, something amazing happened: his anxiety just melted away right in front of my eyes! Poof!

This gave me the idea to start the MIT Survey on Science, Religion and Origins, which we're officially publishing today in honor of Charles Darwin's 204th birthday. We found that only 11 percent of Americans belong to religions openly rejecting evolution or our Big Bang. So if someone you know has the same stressful predicament as my student, chances are that they can relax as well. To find out for sure, check out the infographic below.

So is there a conflict between science and religion? The religious organizations representing most Americans clearly don't think so. Interestingly, the science organizations representing most American scientists don't think so either: For example, the American Association for the Advancement of Science states that science and religion "live together quite comfortably, including in the minds of many scientists." This shows that the main divide in the U.S. origins debate isn't between science and religion, but between a small fundamentalist minority and mainstream religious communities who embrace science.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/max-tegmark/religion-and-science-distance-between-not-as-far-as-you-think_b_2664657.html

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There is no conflict between science and religion. There is a conflict between the religion of evolution and other religions.

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Religion is based on doctrine and faith in one doctrine. Spirituality is based upon connection to a higher being. Science is based on actual physical evidence starting with theories which can be proven true.

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There is no conflict between science and religion. There is a conflict between the religion of evolution and other religions.

So evolution isn't science now?

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There is no conflict between science and religion. There is a conflict between the religion of evolution and other religions.

What you fail to understand is that no matter how you label it or condemn it, evolution is not in any way a religion. It is evidence based science, just like physics, math, medicine, etc.

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Posted (edited)

There is no conflict between science and religion. There is a conflict between the religion of evolution and other religions.

*snip* I'm just going to bite my toung.😝

Edited by Seeker79

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That is one of the pleasant things about this board; there is no evolution versus creationism going on, except maybe a little on the edges and how to teach evolution.

I suppose if one starts I will find myself jumping in, to my regret. Those discussions always irritate me.

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The Vatican has an observatory so it would seem they embrace science.

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That is one of the pleasant things about this board; there is no evolution versus creationism going on, except maybe a little on the edges and how to teach evolution.

I suppose if one starts I will find myself jumping in, to my regret. Those discussions always irritate me.

That's because it's been beat to death on this forum. There are some very knowledgable people about evolution that show up from time to time, and the fundi arguments usually look innocently nieve.

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That is one of the pleasant things about this board; there is no evolution versus creationism going on, except maybe a little on the edges and how to teach evolution.

I suppose if one starts I will find myself jumping in, to my regret. Those discussions always irritate me.

Wait a little bit they tend to come in waves.

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Posted (edited)

Hi Mag357,

Hell, Mount Graham in Arizona is getting as religious as Temple Mount/Dome of the Rock ha ha!

The Vatican has an Observatory there and next door is another telescope unconnected called Lucifer, i wonder if the Jesuit astronomers pop next door to look through Lucifer ha ha!

http://en.wikipedia....ology_Telescope

http://www.popsci.com/science/article/2010-04/devil-named-telescope-helps-astronomers-see-through-darkness

Edited by monk 56

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Never really thought they were all that far apart in the first place, Religion and Politics when dealing with laws, morality, and ethics on the other hand.... now that's a hatred that will last for pretty much forever. I

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I guess it depends on which religion and which science you're talking about. I have two books on the similarity between eastern philosophy/religion and the findings of quantum physics. Pretty interesting reading, as was this article. I'm not sure the title of the article is accurate though, given what it says about the personal beliefs of the people who attend these churches. Only 11% of american churches conflict with science, but 46% of church going americans have beliefs that do. Why would you attend a church that has teachings which conflict with your beliefs? That's the part that shocked me.

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It's easy to forget that the vast majority of Christians embrace science, evolution, the Big Bang, etc. etc. It's only a small percentage of fringe young earth types that don't and unfortunately they get most of the press on these issues.

I've lived and worked in college towns most of my life and anytime I was in a church I would always see many faculty members from the sciences in attendance.

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It's easy to forget that the vast majority of Christians embrace science, evolution, the Big Bang, etc. etc.

The vast majority of Christians couldn't even tell you in what order the God they worship created the universe, as written in the book their religion is based on.

I guess you don't need to know these trivial things to call yourself a Christian.

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There is a widespread sophomoric notion that science has to be materialist or physicalist, if not reductionist and even positivist. Nothing even hinting of the existence of phenomena external to the causal processes of natural laws is allowed.

I think this derives from the reaction of science against religious rear-guard ideas like vitalism and deism and certainly against the Victorian ideas about the "great chain of Being," and Gaia and stuff like that.

It is a bit of the old cliche of throwing out the baby with the bath water.

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I guess it depends on which religion and which science you're talking about. I have two books on the similarity between eastern philosophy/religion and the findings of quantum physics. Pretty interesting reading, as was this article. I'm not sure the title of the article is accurate though, given what it says about the personal beliefs of the people who attend these churches. Only 11% of american churches conflict with science, but 46% of church going americans have beliefs that do. Why would you attend a church that has teachings which conflict with your beliefs? That's the part that shocked me.

You understood this right (almost) but missed the silver lining and there are so few on this forum I can't allow this one to slip away.

Ok, yes 46% do not believe in evolution, but only 11% belong to religions that openly reject evolution.

That means that 35% of of Americans could possibly have the same experience as the student in this article, they thought they couldn't believe in evolution because it was against their beliefs, but then they were actually told that the religion they belong to did not reject evolution and that they didn't have to. The student became someone who believes in both God and science.

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There is a widespread sophomoric notion that science has to be materialist or physicalist, if not reductionist and even positivist. Nothing even hinting of the existence of phenomena external to the causal processes of natural laws is allowed.

I don't find that to be sophomoric, it's based on the evidence that non-materialist/non-physicalist explanations have been resounding failures at explaining anything, as opposed to materialistic explanations which have a great track record of producing results that work. Supernatural/non-material explanations have been offered countless times for a wide variety of phenomenon and have had to retreat nearly every single time in the face of evidenced materialist explanations. What is not 'allowed' is statements that are provided without evidence; if you have good evidence of phenomena external to the causal processes of natural laws, feel free to provide it.

I think this derives from the reaction of science against religious rear-guard ideas like vitalism and deism and certainly against the Victorian ideas about the "great chain of Being," and Gaia and stuff like that.

I think it derives from noting that science has made amazing progress by sticking to methodological naturalism. When someone makes some type of progress by applying a framework other than that, science will incorporate that also but so far, those results have been lacking/non-existent.

It is a bit of the old cliche of throwing out the baby with the bath water.

What you are designating as 'the baby' is to others better termed 'more bath water'.

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I call it sophomoric because the people I run into with such views tend to be young engineers and young doctors. I think the assertion that causal processes explain everything has no end of problems right and is what needs to be proved.

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Posted (edited)

So evolution isn't science now?

No. I am saying there is a naturalist religious belief which is not science, but which is being cloaked in the mantle of science to give it respectability and to protect it from logical and rational scrutiny.

Evolution, the changes in populations that occur through the loss of diversity through allele changes in response to environmental pressures and mating is science, and is therefore, not in any sort of competition with any religions

The completely unobservable, untestable, and unrepeatable belief that all life is derived from one "thing" that was somehow a "living" molecule through the means of immense passage of time, random but beneficial mutations (that all occurred in the proper sequence, sometimes in series sometimes in parallel), and pure blind luck given the title of "natural selection" is a naturalist religious belief and it is "competing" with other religious beliefs for acceptance. Some believers in this religion act and react just like the zealots of any other religious belief when they feel their religious views are being questioned.

Edited by IamsSon

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I call it sophomoric because the people I run into with such views tend to be young engineers and young doctors. I think the assertion that causal processes explain everything has no end of problems right and is what needs to be proved.

I think you're referring to scientism, an ideology that is often confused with science. It is, rather, an abuse of the scientific method and scientific authority.

Article, Article, Article, Article

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I call it sophomoric because the people I run into with such views tend to be young engineers and young doctors. I think the assertion that causal processes explain everything has no end of problems right and is what needs to be proved.

I don't disagree that people who believe in evolution can be just as sophomoric and illogical and unscientific as anyone else, I just don't know that I understand or agree with why you are considering them to be sophomoric. You are likely far above my pay grade as far as philosophical knowledge, so I don't know what specifically you are referring to for example that you don't think causal processes adequately explain, which I'm assuming are numerous give there is no end of problems with it.

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No. I am saying there is a naturalist religious belief which is not science, but which is being cloaked in the mantle of science to give it respectability and to protect it from logical and rational scrutiny.

I agree that naturalism is not science, but with regard to science, isn't it fair to say that assumptions concerning naturalism in the scientific method have something to do with its undeniable efficacy? What method based on non-naturalism components has produced anything close to science as far as verifiability?

Evolution, the changes in populations that occur through the loss of diversity through allele changes in response to environmental pressures and mating is science, and is therefore, not in any sort of competition with any religions

I'm not sure what you mean by 'the loss of diversity' in that statement, evolution many times results in greater diversity.

The completely unobservable, untestable, and unrepeatable belief that all life is derived from one "thing" that was somehow a "living" molecule through the means of immense passage of time, random but beneficial mutations (that all occurred in the proper sequence, sometimes in series sometimes in parallel), and pure blind luck given the title of "natural selection" is a naturalist religious belief and it is "competing" with other religious beliefs for acceptance. Some believers in this religion act and react just like the zealots of any other religious belief when they feel their religious views are being questioned.

Evolution I don't believe technically has shown that all life derived from one thing, but I don't see how that is an unreasonable extrapolation from the scientific elements of evolution that you do accept, do we have some counter-evidence of an alternative explanation? I'm not sure at all what you mean about 'proper sequence' of mutations and why you have an issue with mutations at all when you just accepted I thought 'allele changes' as being properly scientific. The only thing I can think of that remotely ties in with 'blind luck' would be these mutations, but yea, that is part of natural selection, why is that a religious belief? I'm not getting why you are describing evolution here as a 'religious belief' with these particular specifics.

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The completely unobservable, untestable, and unrepeatable belief that all life is derived from one "thing" that was somehow a "living" molecule through the means of immense passage of time, random but beneficial mutations (that all occurred in the proper sequence, sometimes in series sometimes in parallel), and pure blind luck given the title of "natural selection" is a naturalist religious belief and it is "competing" with other religious beliefs for acceptance.

That's because this theory fits the evidence better than any other. It's not blind faith like a religion. It's even somewhat testable because evidence we find must fit the theory or bring it into question.

It's sad that we haven't been able to come up with a better theory that didn't involve random mutations but it's the only one that's compatible what we now know about genetics.

Some believers in this religion act and react just like the zealots of any other religious belief when they feel their religious views are being questioned.

Some people have the same reaction when their favorite brands of computers and cars are questioned. I don't think this alone qualifies them as religions.

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I feel that religion in fact our (man kind) first attempt at science. It's basically a hypothesis. The problem is its a hypothesis that can never be truly tested. It can never become a scientific theory.

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