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Waspie_Dwarf

Evolution is compatible with religion?

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Waspie_Dwarf

How can scientists believe evolution is compatible with religion?

Evolution and religion may not be at war after all. True, the two may sometimes seem like incompatible, competing worldviews: evolutionary science is regularly rejected by prominent religious figures, and its teaching in religious schools is often controversial. And yet, many people seem to happily accommodate both. In the US, where more than nine in ten people say they believe in God, 50% believe in some form of evolution.

There’s a chance that many of these people don’t fully understand the nature of evolution as laid out by science. But most of the scientists who study the topic don’t view it in such combative terms either.

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Waspie_Dwarf

I've posted this because I thought it might be a good basis for discussion. I generally keep a million miles away from the evolution/god discussions because of their habit of becoming vitriolic rather rapidly.

I realise it is not always possible to respect another person's point of view but that is no reason not to respect the person or their right to hold that view.

In short, please be nice.

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Bendy Demon

I do not think the two fields will ever be compatible nor should they be. Religion will often try to fudge and alter its text to make it appear like it is actually agreeing with scientific studies yet still insist that its own dogma is the ultimate truth.

It makes no sense to studiously pore over and research scientific subjects, gather information and solid results only to discard it all, sit back with arms crossed and say "Yeah, I spent wasted years learning the intricate processes but that means nothing really because God did it!". I have actually encountered such thinking.

In the end it doesn't matter what a person understands because it easier to just be told what to think on any given matter rather than risk ridicule for not buckling down and believing what we are told by either religion or science. Science is always changing its stance as it learns more about any particular field, as it should, and its findings will be altered to one degree or another while religion only changes how it words things and often doesn't really change anything.

Trying to successfully mix religion with science is kind of like trying to combine rich chocolate with tuna...technically it can be done but the results are, how shall I put this, very unpleasant.

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eight bits

Greetings, Waspie

We have (almost) disposed of that PLOS ONE paper in a nearby thread here on S v. S. It seems to have been a mistaken figure of English speech unwisely chosen by non-native speakers. Somebody misspoke, nobody caught it in time. Stuff happens.

Second, the article you posted conflates evolution with life origins. That's just confusing. What anyone believes about how the first imperfectly self-replicating entity arose on Earth places no particular constraint on what she believes about what happened next and ever since (evolution by natural selection, IMO, but obviously other views are heard hereabouts).

The article's payload seems to come at the end, with an issue that isn't really well coupled to what precedes it, namely: Is there a biological dimension to "religion" as such? Religion could be survival promoting, although I can't say I'm bowled over by the evidence for that. The article simply notes that some people think it is.

Is that how you see the article?

Edited by eight bits
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Peter B

Heh, I'm involved in exactly such discussions on another site.

I'm not religious, but I have absolutely no problem with the idea that scientists studying evolution (or cosmology or astronomy or geology for that matter) might have a personal faith. Just a few examples:

- Kenneth R Miller (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenneth_R._Miller): biologist and leading witness in the Dover-Kitzmiller Trial.

- Francis Collins (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Collins): biologist involved in the Human Genome Project.

- Georges Lemaitre (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georges_Lema%C3%AEtre): astronomer and priest who developed the idea of the expansion of the universe and the Big Bang theory (despite being rubbished by Einstein for his troubles).

- Charlie Duke (http://www.charlieduke.net/): Apollo 16 astronaut.

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Lilly

Well, evolution is compatible with my concept of God. But then again, I'm a Pantheist. :)

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Stubbly_Dooright

How can scientists believe evolution is compatible with religion?

Is it me, or does the article not explain how or why that the dualist outlook explains goes hand in hand? I try reading to see how that would believe that their version of creation is compatible to evolution, but it just explains, if I am reading it right, or just says that that the dualist just do.

I feel, that for me, it's more of a unseen creator, maaaaybe, could have caused the evolution, but that's me. I know, there is no proof of that, and for those who feel that it's just evolution by the basis of the evidences, yeah, I wouldn't blame them.

I do not think the two fields will ever be compatible nor should they be. Religion will often try to fudge and alter its text to make it appear like it is actually agreeing with scientific studies yet still insist that its own dogma is the ultimate truth.

It makes no sense to studiously pore over and research scientific subjects, gather information and solid results only to discard it all, sit back with arms crossed and say "Yeah, I spent wasted years learning the intricate processes but that means nothing really because God did it!". I have actually encountered such thinking.

In the end it doesn't matter what a person understands because it easier to just be told what to think on any given matter rather than risk ridicule for not buckling down and believing what we are told by either religion or science. Science is always changing its stance as it learns more about any particular field, as it should, and its findings will be altered to one degree or another while religion only changes how it words things and often doesn't really change anything.

Trying to successfully mix religion with science is kind of like trying to combine rich chocolate with tuna...technically it can be done but the results are, how shall I put this, very unpleasant.

I think this is a good point, and I am with you with those who do this.

But, what if their scientific nature, despite their belief system, is strong and they work at it by their scientific thinking, putting their belief system on the back burner? Or what if, it helps the deal with the results, but they still work at it through their scientific outlook?

I do wonder, if that makes sense?

Greetings, Waspie

We have (almost) disposed of that PLOS ONE paper in a nearby thread here on S v. S. It seems to have been a mistaken figure of English speech unwisely chosen by non-native speakers. Somebody misspoke, nobody caught it in time. Stuff happens.

Second, the article you posted conflates evolution with life origins. That's just confusing. What anyone believes about how the first imperfectly self-replicating entity arose on Earth places no particular constraint on what she believes about what happened next and ever since (evolution by natural selection, IMO, but obviously other views are heard hereabouts).

The article's payload seems to come at the end, with an issue that isn't really well coupled to what precedes it, namely: Is there a biological dimension to "religion" as such? Religion could be survival promoting, although I can't say I'm bowled over by the evidence for that. The article simply notes that some people think it is.

Is that how you see the article?

Ah good! It isn't just me. :D

Heh, I'm involved in exactly such discussions on another site.

I'm not religious, but I have absolutely no problem with the idea that scientists studying evolution (or cosmology or astronomy or geology for that matter) might have a personal faith. Just a few examples:

- Kenneth R Miller (https://en.wikipedia...nneth_R._Miller): biologist and leading witness in the Dover-Kitzmiller Trial.

- Francis Collins (https://en.wikipedia...Francis_Collins): biologist involved in the Human Genome Project.

- Georges Lemaitre (https://en.wikipedia...orges_Lema”tre): astronomer and priest who developed the idea of the expansion of the universe and the Big Bang theory (despite being rubbished by Einstein for his troubles).

- Charlie Duke (http://www.charlieduke.net/): Apollo 16 astronaut.

I just wonder, from curiosity, how is it they do this with their dual outlooks?
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Hawkins

The problem is rather that the evolutionary scientists irresponsibly failed to admit that the evolution theory is not the traditional scientific way of confirming a truth. The conventional way of using science to confirm a truth is by establishing a model with predictability.

You use to predict whether, earthquake and so forth because such a model is holding a truth only when it can predict what would happen in accordance to the theories behind such a model. Evolution on the other hand, is a study of the history instead of applying the theory to predict what would happen in the future. The lies the fundamental difference. Instead of clarifying the above, these evolutionary scientists even try further to fool people by equating evolution to biology or genetic engineering. It is a deceptive leverage as both biology and genetic engineering can be a true science with a model of predictability but not the theory of evolution.

Evolution is an attempt due to a limitation.

It is because that it's impossible to go through the whole cycle of evolution which may take millions of years to occur that the only feasible way for humans (scientists or not) to study this subject is by attempting to re-establish what could possibly happen in history in order to theorize evolution. We can't go through a lab process of million years to confirm whether it is a truth in a conventional way. We (evolution scientists mostly) thus employ what is possible to us, that is, to look into history instead of establishing a predictable model. This alternative won't guarantee truth the same way as a conventional science, it's a complete new way of detecting a possible truth. Scientists failed to keep the public informed of this clearly.

That's where the problem is.

Edited by Hawkins

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ShadowSot

The problem is rather that the evolutionary scientists irresponsibly failed to admit that the evolution theory is not the traditional scientific way of confirming a truth. The conventional way of using science to confirm a truth is by establishing a model with predictability.

You use to predict whether, earthquake and so forth because such a model is holding a truth only when it can predict what would happen in accordance to the theories behind such a model. Evolution on the other hand, is a study of the history instead of applying the theory to predict what would happen in the future. The lies the fundamental difference. Instead of clarifying the above, these evolutionary scientists even try further to fool people by equating evolution to biology or genetic engineering. It is a deceptive leverage as both biology and genetic engineering can be a true science with a model of predictability but not the theory of evolution.

Actually, the evolutionary theory does provide a model, and one that has been used to make predictions, which bear out. A good example being the prediction and finding of the Tiktaalik fossil.
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Hawkins

The problem is rather that the evolutionary scientists irresponsibly failed to admit that the evolution theory is not the traditional scientific way of confirming a truth. The conventional way of using science to confirm a truth is by establishing a model with predictability.

You use to predict whether, earthquake and so forth because such a model is holding a truth only when it can predict what would happen in accordance to the theories behind such a model. Evolution on the other hand, is a study of the history instead of applying the theory to predict what would happen in the future. The lies the fundamental difference. Instead of clarifying the above, these evolutionary scientists even try further to fool people by equating evolution to biology or genetic engineering. It is a deceptive leverage as both biology and genetic engineering can be a true science with a model of predictability but not the theory of evolution.

Evolution is an attempt due to a limitation.

It is because that it's impossible to go through the whole cycle of evolution which may take millions of years to occur that the only feasible way for humans (scientists or not) to study this subject is by attempting to re-establish what could possibly happen in history in order to theorize evolution. We can't go through a lab process of million years to confirm whether it is a truth in a conventional way. We (evolution scientists mostly) thus employ what is possible to us, that is, to look into history instead of establishing a predictable model. This alternative won't guarantee truth the same way as a conventional science, it's a complete new way of detecting a possible truth. Scientists failed to keep the public informed of this clearly.

That's where the problem is.

This is yet another deceptive claim. Predictability is different from a simple prediction. A scientific predictability means when ToE tries to conclude that every living organism is undergoing an evolution process from a single cell organism (or whatever), they should be able to demonstrate predictably how so. That is, when they are given a single cell organism, they should be able to tell under what circumstance that this single cell organism can be turned to another full grown, say, human (or whatever you specified).

For another example, if you try to implicitly or explicitly claim that cat can be evolved from a single cell organism, and when you are given a single cell organism you should be able to tell before lab that how this single cell can be turned to a full grown cat. Under what temperature, humidity and other environmental factors and how long this will take for the single cell organism to become a cat. Then you do the lab for your prediction to come to pass. This is what the predictability of science is.

On the other hand, when you try to claim implicitly or explicitly that cat can be evolved from a single cell organism. But all you can do is to show that a single cell organism can be turned to a triple cell organism, this is not a scientific predictability. If you can only make a single cell to a triple cell predictably, all you can claim is that the single cell can turn to triple cell instead of a cat.

The leverage evolutionists trying to employ is that because a single cell can be turned to a triple cell, such that evolution exists, Because evolution exists such that (implicitly) cat can be turned from a single cell. This is rather a deception!

Edited by Hawkins

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ShadowSot

This is yet another deceptive claim. Predictability is different from a simple prediction. A scientific predictability means when ToE tries to conclude that every living organism is undergoing an evolution process from a single cell organism (or whatever), they should be able to demonstrate predictably how so. That is, when they are given a single cell organism, they should be able to tell under what circumstance that this single cell organism can be turned to another full grown, say, human (or whatever you specified).

Evolutionary theory isn't saying that a single celled organism would turn into a human, or whatever as you say.

The idea is that over time beneficial mutations build up and branch organisms off into separate species.

And as it happens studies in yeast have been able to induce multicellular adaption from single celled organisms.

http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CA/CA210.html

A bit on predictive power from evolution.

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Hawkins

This is yet another deceptive claim. Predictability is different from a simple prediction. A scientific predictability means when ToE tries to conclude that every living organism is undergoing an evolution process from a single cell organism (or whatever), they should be able to demonstrate predictably how so. That is, when they are given a single cell organism, they should be able to tell under what circumstance that this single cell organism can be turned to another full grown, say, human (or whatever you specified).

For another example, if you try to implicitly or explicitly claim that cat can be evolved from a single cell organism, and when you are given a single cell organism you should be able to tell before lab that how this single cell can be turned to a full grown cat. Under what temperature, humidity and other environmental factors and how long this will take for the single cell organism to become a cat. Then you do the lab for your prediction to come to pass. This is what the predictability of science is.

On the other hand, when you try to claim implicitly or explicitly that cat can be evolved from a single cell organism. But all you can do is to show that a single cell organism can be turned to a triple cell organism, this is not a scientific predictability. If you can only make a single cell to a triple cell predictably, all you can claim is that the single cell can turn to triple cell instead of a cat.

The leverage evolutionists trying to employ is that because a single cell can be turned to a triple cell, such that evolution exists, Because evolution exists such that (implicitly) cat can be turned from a single cell. This is rather a deception!

On the other hand, when you try to claim implicitly or explicitly that cat can be evolved from a single cell organism. But all you can do is to show that a single cell organism can be turned to a triple cell organism, this is not a scientific predictability. If you can only make a single cell to a triple cell predictably, all you can claim is that the single cell can turn to triple cell instead of a cat.

The leverage evolutionists trying to employ is that because a single cell can be turned to a triple cell, such that evolution exists, Because evolution exists such that (implicitly) cat can be turned from a single cell. This is rather a deception!

Evolution as perceived by the public is never about a beneficial mutation as you try to claim here. It is above how living organisms of all kind come to existence from simpler forms.

Edited by Hawkins

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Nuclear Wessel

Trying to successfully mix religion with science is kind of like trying to combine rich chocolate with tuna...technically it can be done but the results are, how shall I put this, very unpleasant.

That sounds delicious...

**Ryu was the one who said this...but I do agree in most cases this is what goes down.**

Edited by Lilly
quote correction
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ShadowSot

On the other hand, when you try to claim implicitly or explicitly that cat can be evolved from a single cell organism. But all you can do is to show that a single cell organism can be turned to a triple cell organism, this is not a scientific predictability. If you can only make a single cell to a triple cell predictably, all you can claim is that the single cell can turn to triple cell instead of a cat.

The leverage evolutionists trying to employ is that because a single cell can be turned to a triple cell, such that evolution exists, Because evolution exists such that (implicitly) cat can be turned from a single cell. This is rather a deception!

Evolution as perceived by the public is never about a beneficial mutation as you try to claim here. It is above how living organisms of all kind come to existence from simpler forms.

Could you quote the post you are responding to, please, instead of yourself?

Again, no one is saying that a single cell turns into a cat.

What is being said is that over time as beneficial mutations accumulate over time more complex life forms develop.

You dont have single cells becoming a cat, you have a progressive development from single celled, to multicellular, to veryebrates, to mammals, to cats.

Which is backed up by the fossil record and genetics, you don't have something suddenly appearing, but gradual changes over great gulfs of time.

As for what the average Joe public believes, I don't expect the average person to have an accurate view of scientific theories.

Edited by shadowsot
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Elsupremo

The mistake you are all making is that you think you are comparing science and religion, however evolution is also a religion since it's theories which cannot be proven. You believe in the Big Bang, you believe that one spieces can morph into another over time. Anything you believe that is not scientifically observable is religion.

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ShadowSot

The mistake you are all making is that you think you are comparing science and religion, however evolution is also a religion since it's theories which cannot be proven. You believe in the Big Bang, you believe that one spieces can morph into another over time. Anything you believe that is not scientifically observable is religion.

Evolution is observable. As are the remnants of the Big Bang.

More, you have evidences from other fieldsources that add support to the theories.

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Leonardo

The mistake you are all making is that you think you are comparing science and religion, however evolution is also a religion since it's theories which cannot be proven. You believe in the Big Bang, you believe that one spieces can morph into another over time. Anything you believe that is not scientifically observable is religion.

Scientific Theories aren't "meant to be proven", but can only ever be disproved. Anything that can be labelled "science" must be subject to being disproved and this is why science and religion can never be compatible - because those beliefs underpinning religion aren't subject to being disproved.

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Nuclear Wessel

however evolution is also a religion since it's theories which cannot be proven.

Honestly it's thought processes like this that really hurt my brain.

Firstly, evolution is not a religion in any way, shape, or form. A religion, according to the dictionary, is simply a belief or set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe. Evolution in this context has nothing to do with either of those things. Furthermore, it is not a belief system--period. Evolution has been tested and observed in labs, particularly with drosophilia (fruit flies) given their short life spans and ubiquity.

Additionally, the "theory" in scientific terms is not the same as how it is used more colloquially... it is a highly-substantiated explanation that has been repeatedly confirmed via experimentation and observation. It is not a religion and it most certainly has been proven. It has NOTHING to do with belief--it has to do with what is true, and evolution is true whether you'd like to believe it or not.

and You believe in the Big Bang,

While we cannot peer directly into the past and take a look at exactly what happened after the quantum fluctuation triggered the rapid expansion of the singularity (Big Bang theory) we most certainly can make observations of the universe and develop/utilize mathematical theories and models that act in congruence with what we see, and can give us a "best guess" so to speak as to what really happened based on the aforementioned observations. The Big Bang is really our best guess as to what truly happened--believe me when I say that there most certainly are scientists who do not agree with the model and posit that there truly never was a defined "beginning", but that the universe always was and always will be. Even if The Big Bang is not what TRULY happened (despite the stupendous evidences), I believe that taking a stance of "I don't know what happened" is still better than alternatively taking the stance of "God did it".

Also, here is some light reading for you...

http://phys.org/news/2015-02-big-quantum-equation-universe.html

spieces can morph into another over time.

The process is actually quite gradual and has a lot to do with mutation.

Anything you believe that is not scientifically observable is religion.

Not at all. If I believe in the tooth fairy then that is merely a fantastical belief which has nothing to do with religion. You can have scientifically-unobservable beliefs and those beliefs would still not be a "religion".

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Elsupremo

Darwin was a great scientist and thinker, or was he? "The chief distinction in the intellectual powers between the sexes is shown by man attaining a higher eminence in what ever he takes up than can women. Whether requiring deep thought, reason or imagination or merely the use of the senses or hands, the average of mental powers in man must be above that in woman." Descent Of Man by Charles Darwin, page 586

This idiot even failed to see the obvious superiority of the woman. Evilution will start you on road to eugenics, sexism and racism.

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Nuclear Wessel

Darwin was a great scientist and thinker, or was he?

Uh, what does Darwin have to do with what we're talking about, exactly? Aside from the fact that, well... he is considered the grandfather of the evolution theory.

"The chief distinction in the intellectual powers between the sexes is shown by man attaining a higher eminence in what ever he takes up than can women. Whether requiring deep thought, reason or imagination or merely the use of the senses or hands, the average of mental powers in man must be above that in woman." Descent Of Man by Charles Darwin, page 586

OK. So Darwin had some sexist views. What's your point? He lived in an era where that mindset was commonplace. Just because he was quite intelligent that does not mean that he cannot hold flawed beliefs.

This idiot even failed to see the obvious superiority of the woman. Evilution will start you on road to eugenics, sexism and racism.

1. How is a woman superior? In asking that question I am not attempting to imply that a man is superior, but rather... asking how a woman is inherently more superior than a man. I'd like a detailed explanation.

2. How, exactly, will "evilution" lead me down such a road? I could understand how it could lead me towards eugenics, but how exactly would it lead me towards sexism and racism?

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ShadowSot

Darwin was a great scientist and thinker, or was he? "The chief distinction in the intellectual powers between the sexes is shown by man attaining a higher eminence in what ever he takes up than can women. Whether requiring deep thought, reason or imagination or merely the use of the senses or hands, the average of mental powers in man must be above that in woman." Descent Of Man by Charles Darwin, page 586

This idiot even failed to see the obvious superiority of the woman. Evilution will start you on road to eugenics, sexism and racism.

Darling was writing 200 years ago. Of course he was bigoted, everyone was bigoted at the time.

On the other hand Eugenics runs counter to his ideas of what made humans superior, which you'd know if you read the entire book.

Racism predates Darwin, and any scientific basis for racism was erased a long time ago. Genetically there is very little difference at all among races, humans have really little variation compared to other species.

Same with sexism, genetics and biology have shown there are differences, but not appreciable ones in intelligence.

Any great historical figure has flaws, when you take them from the time period of the day they were in and apply modern standards to them.

Darwin, yes, developed evolution by natural selection, but his works aren't still used. They are dated and obsolete. The basics are correct but he had no idea of transitional fossils that were found even while he was writing. The field has advanced far beyond his initial contribution.

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Nuclear Wessel

Darling was writing 200 years ago. Of course he was bigoted, everyone was bigoted at the time.

On the other hand Eugenics runs counter to his ideas of what made humans superior, which you'd know if you read the entire book.

Racism predates Darwin, and any scientific basis for racism was erased a long time ago. Genetically there is very little difference at all among races, humans have really little variation compared to other species.

Same with sexism, genetics and biology have shown there are differences, but not appreciable ones in intelligence.

Any great historical figure has flaws, when you take them from the time period of the day they were in and apply modern standards to them.

Darwin, yes, developed evolution by natural selection, but his works aren't still used. They are dated and obsolete. The basics are correct but he had no idea of transitional fossils that were found even while he was writing. The field has advanced far beyond his initial contribution.

Just let Elsupremo grasp at more straws to try to "strengthen" his case. Let him grasp and laugh.

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Grandpa Greenman

Being Pantheistic makes the reconcile of science and religion much easier. Redefine god as the universe and creation as birth. Works for me.

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Emma_Acid

This is yet another deceptive claim. Predictability is different from a simple prediction. A scientific predictability means when ToE tries to conclude that every living organism is undergoing an evolution process from a single cell organism (or whatever), they should be able to demonstrate predictably how so. That is, when they are given a single cell organism, they should be able to tell under what circumstance that this single cell organism can be turned to another full grown, say, human (or whatever you specified).

For another example, if you try to implicitly or explicitly claim that cat can be evolved from a single cell organism, and when you are given a single cell organism you should be able to tell before lab that how this single cell can be turned to a full grown cat. Under what temperature, humidity and other environmental factors and how long this will take for the single cell organism to become a cat. Then you do the lab for your prediction to come to pass. This is what the predictability of science is.

On the other hand, when you try to claim implicitly or explicitly that cat can be evolved from a single cell organism. But all you can do is to show that a single cell organism can be turned to a triple cell organism, this is not a scientific predictability. If you can only make a single cell to a triple cell predictably, all you can claim is that the single cell can turn to triple cell instead of a cat.

The leverage evolutionists trying to employ is that because a single cell can be turned to a triple cell, such that evolution exists, Because evolution exists such that (implicitly) cat can be turned from a single cell. This is rather a deception!

You don't understand evolution. Bottom line. There is simply no excuse for this, given the wealth of academic knowledge you can find, for free, online. You've chosen to go down the ideological route. Best of luck to you.

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Doug1029

The idea of a young earth came from the 98th Psalm: "A thousand ages in thy sight are as but an evening gone." Because god created the heavens and the earth in six days, the YECs think this means the earth is six thousand years old, give or take a little. BUT: How long is an age? The YECs just ASSUME that an age is a thousand years, but the Bible never says.

That being the case, the Bible can't exclude spontaneous generation OR evolution.

Now to put the shoe on the other foot:

There is no way to demonstrate the immense amounts of time needed for the earth to evolve from a glowing ball of magma to the oasis we see today. So geologists, biologists and others have adopted the Doctrine of Uniformity. It is just ASSUMED because it makes sense and explains a lot of other things about the earth, the cosmos and life. But because it is an ASSUMPTION, it can't exclude a short life-span for the earth - like 6000 years, maybe?

So both sides of the argument are based on an assumption.

And that leaves us high and dry with no explanation at all.

Doug

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