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DOMINICI Forums => General Discussion => Topic started by: nimrod on March 07, 2008, 07:07:09 PM



Title: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 07, 2008, 07:07:09 PM
In this thread I hope for people to discuss issues where Science and Religion disagree. Many people would probably say that Science and Religion are on opposite sides of the spectrum. Others might say that eventually Science will prove Religion to be correct about many issues. Then you get your Scientists who seek to show this and prove that God made the Universe. It's often a tricky topic so firstly should Science and Religion be mixed?

To get us started off I thought we could tackle the issue of healing. I heard it said recently that Science acknowledges healing because it cannot account for certain cases of patients recovering. As you can probably guess the person who said this leans towards the Christian viewpoint and although it is true that many Scientists admit there are physical recoveries they cannot explain I find it quite possible that this person heard it from a Christian Scientist. So do you think Science will find the answers to these anomalies or do healings really happen?

First p/r thread so let's have some serious discussion.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: VFS on March 08, 2008, 09:34:22 AM
I think that anything perceived as Godly intervention or miracles or magic or supernaturalism (new word!) is in fact derived in some way from the 80% or so of the human brain that science doesn't understand yet. Yet.

I would even argue that everything in God's creation is a result of a scientific process.... put in place by God.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 08, 2008, 09:48:49 AM
I would even argue that everything in God's creation is a result of a scientific process.... put in place by God.

So you are saying that God used Science to create the Universe?


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: axeman9182 on March 08, 2008, 09:52:22 AM
I'll say I'm roughly where VFS stands..... I believe in a God but that's about it. I don't believe much in the way of miracles, and I'm sure there's usually some kind of explanation for them (even if we don't know about it)


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Jamesman on March 08, 2008, 09:57:34 AM
From my knowledge, miracles are things that defy natural laws, that go out of  bounds of what should happen and only happen.

I think healings can fall into this category, certainly and hypothetically, but the knowledge that it has happened might be very limited. God could manipulate a cancer to go away, but a doctor might ascribe the going away to good timing with chemotherapy, for example. Sometimes miracles don't seem so miraculous, otherwise people wouldn't have a disbelief in God.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: VFS on March 08, 2008, 10:23:48 AM
I would even argue that everything in God's creation is a result of a scientific process.... put in place by God.

So you are saying that God used Science to create the Universe?

I'm saying that I consider just about everything explainable by science, even that which we cannot explain YET, going all the way back to the creation of the universe... but I think the REASON that is possible is because that prime mover known commonly as "God" planned it that way.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: VFS on March 08, 2008, 10:24:27 AM
From my knowledge, miracles are things that defy natural laws

.. as we currently understand them.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: axeman9182 on March 08, 2008, 10:27:03 AM
Double post. Postwhoring. Ban't


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: VFS on March 08, 2008, 10:28:39 AM
Double post. Postwhoring. Ban't

Watch it, I can junior mod you here too you know. ;)


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: axeman9182 on March 08, 2008, 10:33:23 AM
your threats of punishment don't scare me (you know what they do) :P


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: VFS on March 08, 2008, 10:39:44 AM
No more hijacking!! Go over to DTF to do that :P


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Phantasmatron on March 08, 2008, 11:52:43 AM
From my knowledge, miracles are things that defy natural laws, that go out of  bounds of what should happen and only happen.

I tend to believe that God obeys natural, physical laws.  I figure miracles are mostly stuff that actually makes sense, but is beyond the knowledge of our scientific progress.  Although I have no idea how Jesus pulled off that walking-on-water bit.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: VFS on March 08, 2008, 12:08:38 PM
From my knowledge, miracles are things that defy natural laws, that go out of  bounds of what should happen and only happen.

I tend to believe that God obeys natural, physical laws. 

But why? Why would he stay within the constraints he made for mortal, fallible beings?

So then do you believe that he is timeless, or constrainted by our concept of past, present, and future as well?


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: ZeppelinDT on March 08, 2008, 12:33:01 PM
Although I have no idea how Jesus pulled off that walking-on-water bit.

Maybe he had water skis and just didn't tell anybody.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Phantasmatron on March 08, 2008, 12:50:37 PM
From my knowledge, miracles are things that defy natural laws, that go out of  bounds of what should happen and only happen.

I tend to believe that God obeys natural, physical laws. 

But why? Why would he stay within the constraints he made for mortal, fallible beings?

So then do you believe that he is timeless, or constrainted by our concept of past, present, and future as well?

For me, it's mostly just a personal reaction against some people's mysticism.  Whenever I hear somebody tell a particularly BS story about a "miracle" that happened to them, it feels wrong.  I think God is a god that makes sense.  I think that if he set up the rules of our world, he abides by them when he intervenes in it.  I'm tired of listening to people tell about miracles like they tell ghost stories.  It just doesn't feel right to me.  God is not spooky.

So maybe what I believe about miracles and natural laws isn't true.  But it's also not that important.  I'm not going to go to hell because I think God abides by the laws of physics.  I think there's a much higher risk of going to hell if I treat sacred things like campfire stories. 

And as far as God's timelessness, I have no idea.  I haven't put a lot of thought into it.  I guess I kind of assumed that he exists in the present like the rest of us, only he has perfect knowledge of the past and future.  I have absolutely no scriptural basis for that, so it's not exactly a belief I hold dear.

And, as always, all of that is just my humble opinion.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 08, 2008, 01:01:23 PM
For me, it's mostly just a personal reaction against some people's mysticism.  Whenever I hear somebody tell a particularly BS story about a "miracle" that happened to them, it feels wrong.  I think God is a god that makes sense.  I think that if he set up the rules of our world, he abides by them when he intervenes in it.  I'm tired of listening to people tell about miracles like they tell ghost stories.  It just doesn't feel right to me.  God is not spooky.

So maybe what I believe about miracles and natural laws isn't true.  But it's also not that important.  I'm not going to go to hell because I think God abides by the laws of physics.  I think there's a much higher risk of going to hell if I treat sacred things like campfire stories. 

And as far as God's timelessness, I have no idea.  I haven't put a lot of thought into it.  I guess I kind of assumed that he exists in the present like the rest of us, only he has perfect knowledge of the past and future.  I have absolutely no scriptural basis for that, so it's not exactly a belief I hold dear.

And, as always, all of that is just my humble opinion.

Firstly, do you base your beliefs on Christianity, another religion or do you have your own ideas? If you base your beliefs on Christianity then for Christian theologians what is probably the basis of answering questions about God is that he abides outside of natural laws and that he is not confined to the past, present or the future and that he is not confined to the boundaries of what is logical.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: VFS on March 08, 2008, 01:02:49 PM
I think God is a god that makes sense.  I think that if he set up the rules of our world, he abides by them when he intervenes in it.

Hmmm.. *ponders*


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: VFS on March 08, 2008, 01:05:33 PM


Firstly, do you base your beliefs on Christianity, another religion or do you have your own ideas?

I know this isn't aimed at me, but just for sake of clarity regarding my opinions, I was raised Roman Catholic, have read a healthy dose of classic western philosophy, and spent many years learning about the supernatural, but base everything I say and believe on gut instinct and what feels right to me, largely dependant on my base belief that whatever is responsible for ... THIS... most likely values kindheartedness, earnest attempts to learn, and openmindedness over anything else.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 08, 2008, 01:27:33 PM


Firstly, do you base your beliefs on Christianity, another religion or do you have your own ideas?

I know this isn't aimed at me, but just for sake of clarity regarding my opinions, I was raised Roman Catholic, have read a healthy dose of classic western philosophy, and spent many years learning about the supernatural, but base everything I say and believe on gut instinct and what feels right to me, largely dependant on my base belief that whatever is responsible for ... THIS... most likely values kindheartedness, earnest attempts to learn, and openmindedness over anything else.

Thanks for clarifying your opinions - they say a woman's intuition is never wrong. However, although I agree with you when you say God (so named for the purpose of this discussion) values kindheartedness and earnest attempts to learn I have to question why this is your base belief - is it an assumption or hope?


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Phantasmatron on March 08, 2008, 02:34:33 PM
Firstly, do you base your beliefs on Christianity, another religion or do you have your own ideas? If you base your beliefs on Christianity then for Christian theologians what is probably the basis of answering questions about God is that he abides outside of natural laws and that he is not confined to the past, present or the future and that he is not confined to the boundaries of what is logical.

I think I base my beliefs on Christianity.  But that doesn't mean much, in my opinion.  There's so much variety in Christianity.  So many different denominations believe such different things, especially when it comes to the nature of God.

To be completely honest, I should probably mention that I was raised Mormon.  And I still am Mormon, more or less.  So most of what I believe is probably heavily based in that.  But the past few years have been kind of a crisis of faith for me (except not as dramatic as I just made it sound), so I've been kind of branching out based on what makes sense to me and what feels right to me...pretty much what VFS was saying, only I haven't done quite as much study as she has. 


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: xoxoch on March 08, 2008, 03:14:00 PM
I'm an immunologist, I live in a world of cells, molecules and chemical reactions.. although lots of people might think that scientists do neglect spirituality it's actually not the case at all. it's in the nature of our curiosity to be open towards every possible option... in fact this is what we earn our money with.

there's been some great opinions already mentioned in this thread. I personally keep it with good old Einstein; everything is relative. I do believe that there is some kind of "god" but I don't think he's something "special." He/it might be bound to exist in order for the universe to exist, we just haven't understood the mechanism behind it.

What I really don't believe in is the concept of time as we perceive it. Assuming that "time" moves along a defined vector (since I'm not a maths person I'd call it "forward") confines us big time in interpreting situations that are hard to understand; I think that's acutally a huge part of what makes up "miracles". I'm always thrilled to read about progress to be made in that direction. I'm a huge fan of Steven Hawkins, for example, even though I mostly don't have a clue what he's talking about since this is waaay too maths and physics for me  :rolleyes but I believe that's the way to go in the attempt to unravel the mysteries of our universe.

Coming form this more logical position I still like "spirituality" though. Like last night I drove home from my best friend's b-day party. I stopped at mcdonalds for a burger and fries but I forgot to order a drink (I'm sure the counter person asked me if I wanted one, but I automatically say "no thanks" to whatever they offer me  ;) So when I was back on the highway and halfway through my burger I became incredibally thirsty, of course. I fumbled around the back seat for I thought there might be a an old, half empty bottle of water or something. BUT I actually grabbed a cool, fresh can of coke, which I completely forgot about having there. WEll, then I thought THERE MUST BE A GOD  ;D ;D ;D


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: charliedominici on March 08, 2008, 03:31:30 PM
I'm an immunologist, I live in a world of cells, molecules and chemical reactions.. although lots of people might think that scientists do neglect spirituality it's actually not the case at all. it's in the nature of our curiosity to be open towards every possible option... in fact this is what we earn our money with.

there's been some great opinions already mentioned in this thread. I personally keep it with good old Einstein; everything is relative. I do believe that there is some kind of "god" but I don't think he's something "special." He/it might be bound to exist in order for the universe to exist, we just haven't understood the mechanism behind it.

What I really don't believe in is the concept of time as we perceive it. Assuming that "time" moves along a defined vector (since I'm not a maths person I'd call it "forward") confines us big time in interpreting situations that are hard to understand; I think that's acutally a huge part of what makes up "miracles". I'm always thrilled to read about progress to be made in that direction. I'm a huge fan of Steven Hawkins, for example, even though I mostly don't have a clue what he's talking about since this is waaay too maths and physics for me  :rolleyes but I believe that's the way to go in the attempt to unravel the mysteries of our universe.

Coming form this more logical position I still like "spirituality" though. Like last night I drove home from my best friend's b-day party. I stopped at mcdonalds for a burger and fries but I forgot to order a drink (I'm sure the counter person asked me if I wanted one, but I automatically say "no thanks" to whatever they offer me  ;) So when I was back on the highway and halfway through my burger I became incredibally thirsty, of course. I fumbled around the back seat for I thought there might be a an old, half empty bottle of water or something. BUT I actually grabbed a cool, fresh can of coke, which I completely forgot about having there. WEll, then I thought THERE MUST BE A GOD  ;D ;D ;D


Probably,since he protected you from plowing head on into an oncoming car while you were fumbling around the back seat while driving!
 ;D


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: xoxoch on March 08, 2008, 03:59:48 PM


Probably,since he protected you from plowing head on into an oncoming car while you were fumbling around the back seat while driving!
 ;D
[/quote]

aww, look how he cares about me  :rolleyes


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: zerogravityfat on March 08, 2008, 08:22:42 PM
Double post. Postwhoring. Ban't

Watch it, I can junior mod you here too you know. ;)

pink junior mod his ass.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Matt Gillis on March 11, 2008, 04:03:00 PM
WARNING! Long post will Follow this message!

Alright, as most of you know, I can get a little long winded, and an issue like this will certainly make me worse if anything  :lol So bear with me.

To make this clear right off the start, I am not really any particular religion. But that isn't to say that I am atheist, nihlist, existentialist, etc. I just work things out on my own accord, and that doesn't mean I blieve in something, because truthfully, I do.

I actually wrote a fairly extensive paper on this about a year ago, but to save you many thousands of words, it basically just said "faith is faith and fact is fact". The basis of my paper had a lot to do with quatum mechanics and primordial nucleosynthesis (big bang) and lots of complex theories, but basically all my knowledge of these subjects is purely out of my own interest; I am a pretty smart guy, but I'm certainly no expert on this stuff (and as many quantum physicists will tell you; no one is an expert on these things). So using these theories, I said that no, the universe wasn't infinately old (which is something we know from chemical bonding, and how some chemicals that tend to bond to be stable, haven't bonded, proving that the universe actually does have an age) and that it had to start somewhere.

Now, our understanding of time as xoxoch said, is sketchy at best. In fact, some elementary particles (muons for example) are able to travel FORWARD in time, and show up in reactants before the reactants are even in contact with each other. That obviously sounds impossible how a particle could "time warp", but that is also assuming that time is linear, or that time even exists. Because, lets face it, in all honesty, time is something we made up.

So even though we don't know everything about science, it is still hard (even in theory) to explain how the universe was created. For example, if the big bang theory is right and our universe was created by a chemical reaction, how did that happen when technically the chemicals didn't even exist yet? Could it be those elementary particles jumping BACK in time? For me, that is where faith is. I believe that THAT is what god is. Whoever created the universe is god, and anything after that is science. But that doesn't mean that god told us what to do, or has white hair, or eight arms. I mean, god within all reasonability could be some monkey turning a jack in the box, which creates musical notes, which form the fabric of space in time: what I mean is that WE DON'T KNOW! All I can say is that, in my belief, SOME higher power exists, whether it even has conciousness let alone morals I can't say, but I know that my faith lies in the fact that something created the universe I live in.

Also, I think this "personal quest" for faith is the best a person could ever have. Honestly, I don't care if you are christian or muslim or whatever, all I care about is that you BELIEVE in it because you feel its right, not because someone told you to. I think mass religion has a lot of shortcomings, but it also has a lot of advantages too, and it can benefit us all; but please, don't shove it down my throat.

Oh, and the main reason for my post: Don't try to prove faith with fact (science), its pretty much the biggest mistake you can do in my opinion. Faith doesn't have to make sense, because its something you believe in, not something you need proven. Whenever someone is passionate about their relgion, I just smile and nod, and that's not because I am arrogant and think they are "simple minded" but its because I am happy for them. As soon as you start trying to prove religion, you are no longer believing, and you made religion completely useless. Faith is an accumulation of who you are and how you feel; your very heart and soul, and as soon as you start trying to prove that with science, it is no longer faith, but simply belief in what is logical.

So that's why I am pretty humble about this, I think everyone is entitled to their own belief, and one theory is just as sound as another. I just hope that we can look past faith when viewing a person and see them for their intellectual capability, not as some crazed pariah because their beliefs arn't the same as our own.

Anyways, that's my little blurb to say, thanks for your patience  :)


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: xoxoch on March 12, 2008, 03:58:56 AM
Very wisely spoken and a great read, Matt  8)


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: charliedominici on March 12, 2008, 08:13:44 AM
What bothers me about the subject the most is that there are multiple different religions and each one of them insists that they are right and all the others are wrong.
What angers me is when they want to kill you if you don't agree.Very spiritual!
Welcome to the "Planet of the Apes" my friends!
I used to have a religion,which was pretty much shoved down my throat as a child.
I reluctantly practised it once a week for an hour. Science,on the other hand, is based on fact and truth. We all know that "The Truth Shall Set You Free"!
Now I have something else. It's called sprituality, which I try to practice with each breath I take.
I am much happier now.

....and that's all I have to say about that....(Forrest Gump)


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: ZeppelinDT on March 12, 2008, 10:39:13 AM
What bothers me about the subject the most is that there are multiple different religions and each one of them insists that they are right and all the others are wrong.

One of the many topics addressed so well by the infiinite wisdom of Homer Simpson:

Quote from: Homer Simpson (trying to get out of going to church)
And what if we picked the wrong religion? Every week, we're just making God madder and madder!


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Matt Gillis on March 12, 2008, 04:52:17 PM
Yeah, that's one shortcoming of mass religion in my opinion; especially since kids end up being forced to follow it and have no concious thought as to what it means other than "I have to go to church now". So I always think its best to stop and think about what you are believing in, and decide if you truly think thats right.

And about your spirituality Charlie, I think that, at least in my personal opinion, is the smartest thing you can have. Like I said, if you need tangible proof of a god's existence, than you are "watering down" spirituality into sensuality, and instead of believing in your heart, your merely believeing in what is logical. And I think that's not the best idea sometimes, since often your "soul" defies logic.

A few years ago though, I became aquaintances with a guy who was really interested in religion. I wouldn't call him a "theologist", but he definately knew more about ALL the religions I can think of than anyone else I have ever met. Anyway, I always used to tease him since I figured he was just doing it to be guarenteed an afterlife  :lol Its kind of like throwing a handful of pebbles at someone rather than just a rock  :lol


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Jamesman on March 13, 2008, 09:04:28 PM
Now, our understanding of time as xoxoch said, is sketchy at best. In fact, some elementary particles (muons for example) are able to travel FORWARD in time, and show up in reactants before the reactants are even in contact with each other. That obviously sounds impossible how a particle could "time warp", but that is also assuming that time is linear, or that time even exists. Because, lets face it, in all honesty, time is something we made up.
Can you explain the bolded part further?


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: noxon on March 15, 2008, 05:15:47 PM
Commenting on the first post in this thread - whether "science" has acknowledged healing to exist...

Here's where I have some difficulties with such arguments (science vs religion). Science isn't a single point of acceptance. It's not something you can just say "science says that ..." and be done with it. Science works in the manner of which scientists makes discoveries. These discoveries are then hypothesized upon, and the hypotheses are tested. Rigorously. By many different sets of scientists. There are many scientists that aren't exactly true to the field, and are more out to either prove their own points regardless of  what the proofs may actually say, and there are many scientists that are just wrong due to some errors in their judgements. But the beautiful thing about science is that it is self-correcting. The errors will, over time, be smoothened down and disappear.

When someone claims that "science confirms that healing exists", they probably do not understand the scientific method properly. Science as a whole do not confirm ANYTHING that cannot be proven by testing. Scientists -may- do so on their own, out of their own agenda (if someone exclaims them to be a christian scientist, I automatically have some reservations about their findings - why is there a need to profess your beliefs combined with your scientific research?). I'm pretty certain that currently, the scientific literature on healing is negative. And that's what you have to look at. The literature is the only thing that gives you a balanced view of the matter - no single research should be taken as proof for ANYTHING.

What is healing anyway? How do you prove it? How do you count a positive or a negative result? There are many such basic questions you can (and should) ask. A danger with healing, as such, is that if it becomes a primary source of "medicine", it can do serious harm. People have been killed due to belief in healing powers instead of scientific medicine. I've also seen people been convinced from stopping taking their medication and doing healing rituals instead. I think this is disgusting, as it takes advantage out of desperate people in need. Yes, surely I can understand that a dying cancer patient wants to try anything. But for every faith healer there is a homeopathic remedy, a body energy modifier remedy (such as magnet therapy, chiropractic), a pressure point remedy (such as footzonetherapy or accupuncture) and so forth. Why put your faith in one of them over the others? They have no more scientific basis behind them - while scientific medicines - albeit small chance of success - do.

Can science and religion coexist? In my eyes, no. Science is all about reviewing and changing itself in light of new evidence and discoveries. Religion is VERY reluctant about changes - even to the point of contradicting science even though we can see it quite clearly. And you should not mix science and religion, because if your religious agenda gets in the way of scientific research, there may be huge problems. An old, but still valid, example of this would be back in the 15th century, when some people were beginning to discover that the earth actually wasn't the center of the solar system with everything revolving around it - but the sun actually was. This was contrary to the common beliefs at that time, and a quite famous scientist was forced to recant his view, and put in house arrest for the rest of his life. Now, surely this wouldn't happen in todays day and age - we hope - but there are some troubling views out there that are worrying me. The young earth creationists in the US now, for instance, that are trying to bar school curriculums and books from teaching the accepted scientific theory of evolution in favor of teaching creationism (or, as they politically have chosen to call it, intelligent design - in order to disguise it as a "science" while it quite obviously fails to fulfill the requirements of the scientific method). This is a dangerous step in the wrong direction, in my eyes, and is just one of the reasons why i think science and religion has little chance of coexisting.

As you might have guessed, I'm not religious. I'm not even close to spiritual. I'm an atheist (and kinda a materialist). I do not believe in a god, and i do not believe in supernatural elements. I require quite strong proof to believe anything fantastic. If you claim to be able to heal someone, there are many easy ways to test this scientifically, but it has to be on science terms and not yours. I mean, there are organizations out there that will pay you literally millions of dollars if you can prove that something supernatural exists.




Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Phantasmatron on March 15, 2008, 07:20:44 PM
I totally agree with the first half of your post, noxon.  Science can be just as unrelialble as religion, especially in the ways people choose to interpret it.

But I do think that religion and science can coexist.  It's just a bad idea to ignore either one of them, as they both have a considerable amount of validity.  Unfortunately, they also share a considerable amount of uncertainty.  I guess that's where all these problems come from.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Matt Gillis on March 15, 2008, 10:02:16 PM
Now, our understanding of time as xoxoch said, is sketchy at best. In fact, some elementary particles (muons for example) are able to travel FORWARD in time, and show up in reactants before the reactants are even in contact with each other. That obviously sounds impossible how a particle could "time warp", but that is also assuming that time is linear, or that time even exists. Because, lets face it, in all honesty, time is something we made up.
Can you explain the bolded part further?

Well, I learned this from my physics teacher, so your getting this information third hand or so (so don't go quoting me on too much, since as I said, I am in NO MEANS an expert!) but there were some experiments done where some elementary particles (these include things like quirks and quarks, which is what makes up protons and neutrons etc.) that are only supposed to appear in the product had shown up in the reactants like the reaction had already happened. . . despite the reactants having no contact with each other.

There is also similarly weird stuff involved with "quantum conciousness" which is the whole study of theory on certain atomic structures which have conciousness. Basically theories state that these concious particles "decide" certain things. There was a very famous experiment (and very controversial) called "Schrodingers cat", which was a satrical attempt at proving einstein wrong. Einstein kinda proved schrodinger wrong in the end by saying that how things operate in the quantum level does not translate to the classical (normal) level of physics. If you want to learn about the experient check out the wikipedia page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schrodinger_cat

There is all kinds of weird things when it comes down to quantum behavior. This may be because quantum mechanics are still very new and not known about that well, and as noxon said, science is an ever evolving process. But I've learned (yes, offcially, not from some guy sitting in his mom's basement writing up crackpot theories) all kinds of really retarded things. Check out the electron slit experiement as well; that one will freak you out.

And as you have noticed, I have typed a long post and probably haven't answered your question whatsoever  :lol Why? Because I probably can't. Not only is my knowledge on this stuff limited, its hard for ANYONE to explain why certain things happen when it is in the quantum "realm". I just try to stay away from the whole bit altogether because its quite controversial in the first place, and I fear I will run into an expert someday who will overhear me and will have completely missed my whole disclaimer of me NOT being an expert! I can provide you with information, but just don't ask me to explain it, especially in posts, since usually one thing is just the "tip of the iceberg" and you need to explain 10 other really HARD things before you can get your point across.

Anyway, I just brought it up to prove my whole point about time being abstract. I know I didn't help but I hope this helped in some way or another  :d'oh:


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: charliedominici on March 16, 2008, 01:11:13 AM
Recently there are many new discoveries. Time is speeding up,in the sense that progress in science is rapidly moving forward. We are worried now about "Traffic" in Space. In Japan they have discovered a nano processor that mimics the human brain. Can you say Cyborg? Let me add that in the very near future we will be the "aliens from another planet" that some other distant life form is worried about getting an uninvited  visit from.A close encounter of the 4th kind? Look at the world without your government issued blindfolds on. It's all happening right before our eyes. I want to retract my comment about this being the "Planet of the Apes" because I know that Apes are smarter than us. They are not meat eaters. They only attack when threatened.Even in these "modern" times, they are still crucifying people for their beliefs in some parts of the world. Can you say 2000+ years of progress? Not this time,I'm afraid.Religion has had it's chance to save man. It has not only failed miserably but is and has been a root cause of the peril we all face now. It's time for science and logic to take over. I would like to know exactly what they are doing in that useless but very expensive peice of real estate in NYC called "The United Nations" building. They might as well just turn it into a condo and at least make some money out of it. "Greed, The Evil Seed"  :rant


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: noxon on March 16, 2008, 03:06:49 AM
I totally agree with the first half of your post, noxon.  Science can be just as unrelialble as religion, especially in the ways people choose to interpret it.

But I do think that religion and science can coexist.  It's just a bad idea to ignore either one of them, as they both have a considerable amount of validity.  Unfortunately, they also share a considerable amount of uncertainty.  I guess that's where all these problems come from.

Uhm, for a non-believer, what is the "considerable amount of validity" of a religion? I mean, obviously a christian do not believe in the hindu faith or the muslim faith or (insert any other of the 1000s of religions we've had during the history of time). Or are you saying that all religions are valid at the same time? Please do not confuse beliefs with knowledge. Much of what we -think- religion is saying today is our current adaptation of the old religion - fitted to fit with our worldview. Science CANNOT coexist with religion because religion is about explaining that which is supernatural. The supernatural, by its very definition, cannot be tested by science, because science can only test that which exists in nature.

The core difference between science and religion is faith. Science professes to know ONLY based on testable evidence. Religion professes to know ONLY based on faith. Science covers for its uncertainties by stating that yes, we do not know everything, nor do we CLAIM to do so either, BUT whenever we DO claim to know, we also put forward testable hypothesis that can either prove or disprove our claim of knowledge. Religion covers for its uncertainties by stating "it is god, god is mysterious" and leaves it at that. Do you not see the difference in science asking "where does the sun come from" and answering "it was born from a huge cloud of matter condencing into a ball of fire" (great simplification for illustrative purposes) and religion askin "where does the sun come from" and just answering "it was created by god". Or when it comes to questions that goes against the religion, such as "where do humans come from", towhich science has answered "evolution" but creationists claim are "intelligent design". There are also scientific moral dilemmas such as stem cell research and so on that are hindered by religious policies.

The reasons for us not to mix science and religion are very much the same as the reasons for us not to mix religion and state.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 16, 2008, 04:11:15 AM
Science professes to know ONLY based on testable evidence. Religion professes to know ONLY based on faith. Science covers for its uncertainties by stating that yes, we do not know everything, nor do we CLAIM to do so either, BUT whenever we DO claim to know, we also put forward testable hypothesis that can either prove or disprove our claim of knowledge.

You have made a significant number of absolutes in your post and then you claim that Science does not claim to know everything. Science, as you seem to be saying in this section, does not know everything and the reason why Science cannot knock Religion to the side is that Science cannot account for the time old question of how did we all get here. Science talks about evolution and all kinds of complicated theories, but forgive me for saying what you have probably heard thousands of people say - why is there something rather than nothing? The big bang theory, for all its power, cannot tell us why and how the big bang happened in the first place. There are physicists who claim that according to quantum mechanics, empty space is actually filled with so-called "virtual particles". Apparently they spring into existence for an instant before vanishing which leads to the argument that the entire universe began as a kind of virtual particle. There is no proof for this and ultimately you then have to ask the question of how did the first virtual particle get there? Most physicists will nevertheless admit that they have absolutely no idea why there is something rather than nothing. The deeper you go the more questions you have to ask - what produced the laws of quantum mechanics, which supposedly allowed quantum creation to occur? I suppose what I am trying to say here is that everyone has to take a step of faith - another frequently used argument I apologise - there is you with your faith in Science but you can never know that Religion is wrong so you take a step of faith in saying that Religion is not valid, you cannot say for sure that Science will not one day prove the existence of some kind of higher being that created our Universe. Then there are those who prefer Religion to Science, they take a step of faith in believing in their Religion rather than the concrete evidence Science presents. I believe that Science will prove that there is a God and for this reason I believe Religion and Science can coexist.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: charliedominici on March 16, 2008, 06:19:08 AM
I have a question for nimrod.
If you stand firmly on the "Science cannot explain where the big bang came from" theory as a basis for your argument,then can you tell me this.
Does you religion explain where God himself came from?

From the dictionary:
Re-li-gion.
–noun 1. a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, esp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs. 
2. a specific fundamental set of beliefs and practices generally agreed upon by a number of persons or sects: the Christian religion; the Buddhist religion. 
3. the body of persons adhering to a particular set of beliefs and practices: a world council of religions. 
4. the life or state of a monk, nun, etc.: to enter religion. 
5. the practice of religious beliefs; ritual observance of faith. 
6. something one believes in and follows devotedly; a point or matter of ethics or conscience: to make a religion of fighting prejudice. 
7. religions, Archaic. religious rites. 
8. Archaic. strict faithfulness; devotion: a religion to one's vow. 
—Idiom9. get religion, Informal. a. to acquire a deep conviction of the validity of religious beliefs and practices. 
b. to resolve to mend one's errant ways: The company got religion and stopped making dangerous products. 

.....End of Dictionary definition.

In my humble but educated opinion,Religion is man's quick answer to questions that Science is willing to spend the time and energy to actually figure out. One day,Science WILL have all the answers while religions will still be arguing with each other that their ancient archaic and "faith " based answers are right when all the others,who also believe that THEY are right, are wrong.
hmmmmmmm........ :d'oh:
I strongly feel that Science will eventually prove all religions wrong. The truth always comes out,it just takes time.Science takes that time,Religion wants quick answers,accurate or not.
That said, I also feel this thread is a total waste of time. I see it as an endless argument because I had these endless arguments with my dad when I was young and then with others as I have grown. As I began to realise I was in danger of proving to them that everything they believed was a lie,I realized that I did not want to take on that responsibilty.
I'll leave that to Science.
 




Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: xoxoch on March 16, 2008, 06:45:58 AM
this is a massively interesting thread!

I don't believe in time. I mentioned that earlier in this thread. but I also have a belief, be it a "scientific" or "religious" one; I'll leave that to the philosphers: extremes never worked, work or will work in this universe, everything tends towards chaos which I equate with balance.

Just look at this thread: some like religion, others like science, some are more concerned about the matter, others less - basically it's all balanced and that I appreciate  ;D



Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 16, 2008, 07:22:56 AM
I have a question for nimrod.
If you stand firmly on the "Science cannot explain where the big bang came from" theory as a basis for your argument,then can you tell me this.
Does you religion explain where God himself came from?

I am going to make several statements about my beliefs so that everyone is clear:

1. I believe in the existence of God.

2. I think religion does not always allow enough room for personal opinions and for this reason amongst others (including the fact the Church have persecuted so many Scientists who were actually correct in their theories) I do not have respect for religion.

3. I believe there is a distinct difference between faith and religion. In no way am I arguing that religion is a good thing, I think the Catholic Church's desire to control everything is ridiculous and I also think that the Pope is no more holy than anyone else. I am a Christian but that is because I believe in the Christian God and I believe Jesus died for us etc. It is a strictly personal belief on a faith level, although I meet with like-minded Christians when I go to Church. My Church is an independant charasmatic Church and we meet because we have a common faith, a common vision and a purpose, no we are not one of those Churches who do the whole push people on the floor, make them cry and say it's the Holy Spirit thing. I hope you see what I'm trying to say here - that I don't actually think religion is a good thing, I have my faith and I do not condone the terrible acts the Church has encouraged and performed. One thing I think religion is good for though is introducing ethics into science, we should certainly not be cloning human beings there needs to be boundaries but that is a different subject altogether.

4. I am not certain about the creation of the Universe but I do believe it was created by God and that behind theories like the Big Bang lies God. I think that if the Big Bang theory is correct then all the factors that would need to be perfectly in position to end up with our Universe would have to be controlled by God and perhaps the Big Bang was how God created the Universe - I don't know it's just an opinion.

In response to your question about religion explaining where God came from my answer is this - God does not come from anywhere. God exists independantly of the universe, outside of time. Being outside of time, there is no creation period for God, only eternal existence. People should make their own judgments on religion and science. I don't wish for people to see me as a supporter of religion because I am not. I have my own views and opinions but ultimately I would call myself a Christian and Christianity has a wide variety of views on issues and I do not agree with a lot of these. I do believe that religion and science can coexist if they were to come together and look at it from both points of view.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: noxon on March 16, 2008, 07:40:23 AM
Okay, let us deal with the creation of the universe. Surely, as the universe is the definition of nature, we cannot possibly measure or know what existed before this. We can hypothesize what may have existed, but there is no way (that we currently know of) that can tell us conclusively.

Now people of faith interject and state that THIS is where we need faith. This is commonly known as the god of the gaps fallacy. Whenever we cannot explain something, we choose the simplest solution to explain it that is available to us at this moment. For many people, this has been god. The problem is that this god exists in the gaps of scientific knowledge - and as scientific knowledge has increased over the past thousands of years, the gaps the god could exist in has become fewer and fewer. There used to be a time where gods could be attributed to any even that happened that wasn't inherently obvious. Lightning was the wrath of Zeus from above. Thunder the sounds of Thors hammer being stricken. Insanity was possesions of demons and whatnot.

But surely, when it comes to the creation of the universe, injecting a god into that equation doesn't satisfy or simplify ANYTHING. In fact, you are trying to exclaim that "the universe is so infinitely complex and improbable that something EVEN MORE infintitely complex and improbably would have to exist to have been its creator". But who created the creator? Who created the creator's creator? And thus we continue ad infinitum. For a non-believer as such, this is not a satisfying answer at all - and I tend to look at the more simpler cause: the universe exists because it does. It does not exist because someone else caused it to exist. And even if it did - it is of no importance because that someone cannot possibly be part of this universe (we would be able to measure and test it if it was). So that throws out the whole personal god theory - and why would a god be so interested in people anyways? And why only a few? Why are kids dying from horrible diseases and famine and wars at one place at the earth, while god listens to a prayer to heal some other guy suffering from a slightly crooked back at another?


I want everyone to think about things properly and rationally. Try to answer these questions:  Why do you believe in the religion you do? Is it because of heritage and/or your surrounding culture? Why do different cultures have different religions? Can you trace the history of religion (even yours) through earlier versions of the religion or related cultures religions? What makes your religion unique - and conversely what makes it similar to other religions? All in all: why do you believe what you believe, and not something else? I think this is very important knowledge for yourself!


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: charliedominici on March 16, 2008, 07:46:08 AM
Ha! That's what I love about the catholic religion! It's the utimate "Rocky Horror Picture show" All that fire and brimstone stuff,God's wrath,7 angels that destroy the world. Armagedden,oh yes..especially the part about how the end begins when a baby is born without a soul. Supposedly because there are only so many souls to go around. Hogwash! God probably owns a soul franchise. He has to be bigger than McDonalds and I could get a Big Mac even here in Hungary if I was still eating dead bodies,that is,which I'm not. I think they might be referring to a baby without a soul being due to a "Cloned" human, which is probably why the church is so against cloning. I love this stuff! What a wealth of material to draw from ...wait..I think I'll write a Trilogy! oh I forgot,I already did that.
My final thoughts on this thread..."Believing what you like but believing in something does not necessarily make it true"

                                                                                        unknown author,(I think maybe it was me) :justjen:


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 16, 2008, 08:10:29 AM
But who created the creator? Who created the creator's creator? And thus we continue ad infinitum. For a non-believer as such, this is not a satisfying answer at all - and I tend to look at the more simpler cause: the universe exists because it does. It does not exist because someone else caused it to exist. And even if it did - it is of no importance because that someone cannot possibly be part of this universe (we would be able to measure and test it if it was). So that throws out the whole personal god theory

Nobody created the creator, hence the title. As I said before: "God does not come from anywhere. God exists independently of the universe, outside of time. Being outside of time, there is no creation period for God, only eternal existence". You say God cannot possibly be part of this Universe - I believe that is an unnecessary statement as I have already said I believe God created the Universe and therefore he must have been outside of it in order to create it. Are you saying there can be no God because you cannot "measure and test" him?

Why are kids dying from horrible diseases and famine and wars at one place at the earth, while god listens to a prayer to heal some other guy suffering from a slightly crooked back at another?

I don't think you need me to explain why there is evil and suffering in the world, but I think this explains it pretty well: http://www.carm.org/questions/suffering.htm.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: noxon on March 16, 2008, 08:19:14 AM
Do you not see that "nobody created the creator" is no less explanatory than "the universe just came into being by itself"? You don't really -need- a creator there, the universe itself can just "have become". For all intents and purposes, the very reason i ask that question is because I'm trying to make you understand that the question YOU had about the big bang and what came before it is no more explained through your "god being" for me than before, and it just adds a layer of absurd complexity above the whole creation that is completely unnecessary for me. I can no more accept the god theory than you can accept the "the universe just created itself" theory.

Furthermore, the reason why i stated the things about god being outside nature is simply because of the "personal god" thing. If he is outside the universe, he cannot interact with it. If he's not outside the universe and CAN interact with it, he can then also be discovered as he does this. But as long as he's outside the universe and cannot interact, I again have to ask: why do you NEED a god there? It does seem that he's becoming less and less important for nature to work the more we discover how things actually work. And thus - the only thing that remains is the comfort of faith, in my eyes. And the comfort of faith is far subdued compared to the rationality of scientific knowledge.


I do know all about the "sin" aspect of christian religion. This is of course not my first religion discussion. And I haven't made up my mind about religion based on NOTHING, it of course comes from many years of study. And you have to think about what you're asking of me here. You are asking me, a non-believer, to believe in the story of a selfish and jealous god of temptation, who flawed his creation thus that they would be easily tempted. This temptation was something he, in his allknowing self, already knew they would succumb to. I mean, let's look at it in perspective. You have a 3 year old kid. You leave the kid in a room with a bowl of chocolate. Before you leave, you say "don't eat the chocolate, or you'll face the consequences". Surely, you would not expect the 3 year old kid to care about the consequences when there's chocolate on the table and noone in the room to say no? A 3 year old does not know what the consequences are - and neither did "man" in that story. God had not GIVEN man knowledge yet - as knowledge was what was contained in the fruit of the tree. Man didn't know good for evil, he did not know what the consequences were as he had no knowledge! Surely you can understand the problem I have, as a non-believer, believing in what is claimed?

(And surely, the creator of the universe would also be the creator of good and evil - lest you claim he did NOT create everything - which leaves room for a second creator...)


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: charliedominici on March 16, 2008, 08:25:39 AM
You know what, I can't resist saying this. If there is a god, he is a deadbeat dad! That's right! A cruel self centered mean and abusive and absent parent and I have no use for him anymore. :monkeygirl:
I think I'll write a song, "Honor thy God" :metal


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: faemir on March 16, 2008, 08:38:12 AM
Quote
An old, but still valid, example of this would be back in the 15th century

No, that's not a valid example, 600 years later. It's a valid statement, but it can't be used as a backing up example.

Quote
The young earth creationists in the US now, for instance, that are trying to bar school curriculums and books from teaching the accepted scientific theory of evolution in favor of teaching creationism (or, as they politically have chosen to call it, intelligent design - in order to disguise it as a "science" while it quite obviously fails to fulfill the requirements of the scientific method). This is a dangerous step in the wrong direction, in my eyes, and is just one of the reasons why i think science and religion has little chance of coexisting.

And teaching just evolution is wrong as well. Teach both, let them make their own mind up. The issue there is teaching only one thing and saying it is 'correct' instead of giving them a choice. So what if young earth creationists in the US are trying to do that? I mean, it's not like that makes up the majority of all religous people. Minorities are always the most heard.



Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: noxon on March 16, 2008, 08:54:39 AM
Of course it is a valid example of what can go wrong when religion is involved in science whereas it should not. I could have brought forward many such cases, but found it easiest to bring forward a very simple case that is well known (albeit old).


Teaching just evolution is correct WHEN it is the accepted scientific theory. You aren't teaching children to have them make up their own minds about stuff. In a science class, evolution theory is all that is valid - creationism (intelligent design) has nothing to do with the science class, it is not a scientific theory, and it does not belong there. Do not underestimate the power of authority - allowing intelligent design to be taught as a scientific theory in the classroom validifies it for the kids that are taught it to such a degree that it will only increase the already strong belief in intelligent design. This is a religious agenda and has nothing to do with science! Science has a 200 year long history of testing evolution. Biology has explained a LOT of the processes involved. We have literally billions of pieces of evidence in support of evolution. Science do not have ANY doubts whether evolution exists or not. There is ABSOLUTELY no reason to include intelligent design in the science classroom.

To put it a bit strongly: What if someone believed that drinking cyanide WASNT deadly. And you have a class that teaches kids: "okay, don't drink cyanide cause it's deadly" - "but some other people disagree and say it cures illnesses" - "you have to make up your own mind". That's a bit irresponsible, don't you think? You wouldn't do that now, would you?


http://www.gallup.com/poll/21814/Evolution-Creationism-Intelligent-Design.aspx


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: faemir on March 16, 2008, 09:05:40 AM
Of course it is a valid example of what can go wrong when religion is involved in science whereas it should not. I could have brought forward many such cases, but found it easiest to bring forward a very simple case that is well known (albeit old).


Teaching just evolution is correct WHEN it is the accepted scientific theory. You aren't teaching children to have them make up their own minds about stuff. In a science class, evolution theory is all that is valid - creationism (intelligent design) has nothing to do with the science class, it is not a scientific theory, and it does not belong there. Do not underestimate the power of authority - allowing intelligent design to be taught as a scientific theory in the classroom validifies it for the kids that are taught it to such a degree that it will only increase the already strong belief in intelligent design. This is a religious agenda and has nothing to do with science! Science has a 200 year long history of testing evolution. Biology has explained a LOT of the processes involved. We have literally billions of pieces of evidence in support of evolution. Science do not have ANY doubts whether evolution exists or not. There is ABSOLUTELY no reason to include intelligent design in the science classroom.

To put it a bit strongly: What if someone believed that drinking cyanide WASNT deadly. And you have a class that teaches kids: "okay, don't drink cyanide cause it's deadly" - "but some other people disagree and say it cures illnesses" - "you have to make up your own mind". That's a bit irresponsible, don't you think? You wouldn't do that now, would you?


http://www.gallup.com/poll/21814/Evolution-Creationism-Intelligent-Design.aspx

Straw man arguments are the second lamest type of argument ever.

And okay, so they teach evolution in science and then creationism in RS. They still need to hear more than one thing, especially since as evolution is a THEORY and thus can be wrong. Sure, they are correct, until they are proven wrong - the theory before seafloor spreading and continental drift comes to mind as something accepted for ~60 years then proven wrong. Oh sorry, all those kids were taught incorrectly :hmm


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 16, 2008, 09:11:19 AM
@noxon: How does that last link you posted support your argument? The first poll on the page:

"Evolution, that is, the idea that human beings developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life" - 18% thought this was definitely true

"Creationism, that is, the idea that God created human beings pretty much in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years" - 39% thought this was definitely true


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: faemir on March 16, 2008, 09:16:16 AM
Also, what is wrong with making the hypothesis that 'God created man through evolution'?


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: noxon on March 16, 2008, 11:52:42 AM
First off, it's not a straw man to examplify how teaching stuff going against scientific consensus would be. Religion should not be taught as fact in school. It should be taught as history or sociology courses - on the line with all other religions. Why choose one religion to talk about as fact over any other religion? Once you interject beliefs into what is being taught over that of science consensus, you are creating a dangerous and misleading society. We are creating ignorance. Don't you see the power in stating that intelligent design should be taught in school to let people choose for themselves... On the one hand, contradicting a 200 year old scientific consensus with a religious agenda, and presenting it as science is simply cheating science out of its importance. It's purposely used to create doubts against science to which there should be NO DOUBT.

The poll supports my argument in that it shows what people think. It was to show that, even though SCIENCE agrees that evolution is correct, AMERICANS do not. And it was to show the danger of even further blurring the lines between science and religion. I mean, 39% believe that creationism is a fact? Contrary to what science thinks?

Oh dear, did you just bring up the "it's just a theory" argument? That shows complete disregard for the scientific method and how and what it works. In science, a theory is NOT what the word means in day-to-day speak. It's not "something that's not yet proven". In the scientific method, you have an idea. You hypothesize upon that idea to exhaust all possibilities. To try to falsify the idea. When all falsification attempts have failed, you begin to form the theory. The theory is thus capable of predicting future events. For instance, we have the gravitational theory. We do predict how gravitation works on small and large objects. The same goes for electrical circuit theory - we predict how electricity performs and thereby can create devices from that (such as the transistor). The theory of evolution is of no less significance OR scientific rigirous than the theory of gravitation - yet the term "it's just a theory" is MOST OFTEN heard by creationists. Let's present the "alternative" theory that the magic hand of god is sticking us to earth, and therefore we do not fly off. Why not, it's just as sane as intelligent design.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory

Yes, sometimes there are paradigm shifts in science. That's the very NATURE of science. Science NEVER claims to know 100%. It claims to purposely model everything that we can observe as thoroughly and accurately as possible as testable hypothesis and theories. Paradigm shifts happens due to new discoveries that are revolutionary concerning how things works. That's one of the magnificent things about science. It's self-correcting, and when we learn that something is wrong WE CORRECT IT.

The fact that science changes does not validify going against the science consesus in biology that states that evolution is a fact and teaching intelligent design instead. But you have to realize that the difference between continental drift and plate tectonics theory is not by a long shot the same as the difference between evolution and intelligent design. Plate tectonics was a further development on continental drift theories. It was a theory that was built upon 400 years of observations of how continents "fit together" and registrations of earth movements for many years. At no point was there anyone thinking to fit in a "god is moving the plates around" into the theory. Which is what intelligent design is trying to do. Intelligent design is a desperate move by desperate religious people who cannot accept that science has explained how humans evolved from common ancestors of the apes - and NOT created in Gods image as the bible states.

What's wrong with making the hypothesis that god created man through evolution? In scientific terms: it's a unfalsifiable hypothesis, and therefore not useful in science at all. Another such unfalsifiable hypothesis is the Flying Spagetthi Monster - or the Russels Teapot. To exemplify: there is a teapot in orbit around the moon. Due to special circumstances, it's ALWAYS on the opposite side of the moon, so we cannot see it from earth. We also do not have any space telescopes that can catch this teapot. But I claim the teapot exists. Please disprove the teapot for me.


http://www.csicop.org/intelligentdesignwatch/not-science.html

http://www.secularhumanism.org/index.php?section=library&page=dawkins_18_2


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: faemir on March 16, 2008, 12:52:45 PM
Quote
First off, it's not a straw man to examplify how teaching stuff going against scientific consensus would be.

wrong.

Quote from: wikipedia
# Presenting a misrepresentation of the opponent's position and then refuting it, thus giving the appearance that the opponent's actual position has been refuted.

Which is what you did in your 'What if someone believed that drinking cyanide WA....' paragraph. You half admitted it at the start yourself.

Quote
Religion should not be taught as fact in school.

I never said anything contrary to that. In fact, I agree. Obviously you didn't read my post about how I said that evolution should be taught in science and creationism in RS (as one such religious belief, as not all Christians are literalists, incase you didn't know.)

Quote
It should be taught as history or sociology courses - on the line with all other religions.

History? Are you just trying to be offensive? I mean, it really sounds like you are, since as you could of just said it could be taught as RELIGION.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 16, 2008, 02:01:46 PM
Why choose one religion to talk about as fact over any other religion? Once you interject beliefs into what is being taught over that of science consensus, you are creating a dangerous and misleading society.

Wikipedia defines intelligent design as the assertion that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection". I do not see anyone claiming that intelligent design is about the Christian God, many believe this to be so as the article then goes on to say, but ultimately intelligent design is about a designer and this could be from many religions. Therefore, if one were to teach intelligent design in schools they would not be choosing "one religion to talk about as fact over any other religion".

On the one hand, contradicting a 200 year old scientific consensus with a religious agenda, and presenting it as science is simply cheating science out of its importance. It's purposely used to create doubts against science to which there should be NO DOUBT.

Throughout each of your posts you talk about science as if what science says is final. As you said yourself, science does not have all the answers. As for "cheating science out of its importance", are you not trying to cheat religion out of its importance here as well? There is no need for this because nobody is trying to cheat science out of its importance, it has already been suggested that God could have used scientific methods to create man and the Universe etc. The importance of science has been acknowledged yet you think there is some "religious agenda". What exactly is that? To say science is wrong about everything? No. If anything religion is actually a very good test for scientific theories as it brings up all sorts of questions that science must answer for its theories to work.

Science NEVER claims to know 100%. It claims to purposely model everything that we can observe as thoroughly and accurately as possible as testable hypothesis and theories. Paradigm shifts happens due to new discoveries that are revolutionary concerning how things works. That's one of the magnificent things about science. It's self-correcting, and when we learn that something is wrong WE CORRECT IT.

It's very interesting that you said earlier in your post when referring to religion, "It's purposely used to create doubts against science to which there should be NO DOUBT". However, it seems here that you are saying science never claims to know everything, so why did you say there should be no doubt over what science has to say?

At no point was there anyone thinking to fit in a "god is moving the plates around" into the theory. Which is what intelligent design is trying to do. Intelligent design is a desperate move by desperate religious people who cannot accept that science has explained how humans evolved from common ancestors of the apes - and NOT created in Gods image as the bible states.

Intelligent design is most definitely not trying to say "god is moving the plates around". Find me a single source that says otherwise.

What's wrong with making the hypothesis that god created man through evolution? In scientific terms: it's a unfalsifiable hypothesis, and therefore not useful in science at all. Another such unfalsifiable hypothesis is the Flying Spagetthi Monster - or the Russels Teapot.

It may be unfalsifiable, but kindly tell me how it could be falsifiable without a time machine? Furthermore, why does it need to be falsifiable? It is accepted in science that the Earth consists of several layers including what is called the mantle. Nobody has ever seen the mantle and therefore it is an unfalsifiable hypothesis that it exists yet it is accepted scientific theory. I accept this theory even though it is unfalsifiable and so do you, therefore it is irrelevant to say that God creating man through evolution is not useful in science at all just because it is an unfalsifiable hypothesis.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: noxon on March 16, 2008, 03:32:18 PM
Faemir: a straw man is stating YOUR side as something other than it really is. The discussion here was whether science and religion should be accepted as equals and coexist in class. If you DIDNT MEAN THAT, then of course you would think that my quote was a straw man. You have to look at the discussion as a whole, not just a singular quote taken out of context. The discussion was: "why is intelligent design thaught alongside evolution a bad thing". The example I chose was "why is it the poisionous effects of cyanide not thaught alongside the positive effects". This is NOT a strawman in the same discussion - because they are both sides of the same story: one is based on scientific principles, the other on a belief that are NOT based in science. I do not know how I can make that any more clearer for you. If that STILL is a straw man for you, i think you need to learn about straw man arguments. A straw man argument is more like saying "evolution is ridiculous - macro evolution is saying that fish can evolve directly into apes". I never said that any intelligent design proponets do beleive that cyanide is not dangerous - so i never made a straw man attack either. I used it as an example. An example of how two conflicting accounts - one scientific and one non-scientific - should not be taught alongside eachother as equally valid.


Nimrod: Intelligent Design IS of christian source. There is no doubt about this. Intelligent Design is a politically disguised christian agenda created specifically to lure in creationism into curriculums - whereas creationism now is such a laden word that they cannot use it anymore (creationism is instantly recognizable as christian). The main proponents (and some might say creators) of Intelligent Design is the Discovery Institute (http://www.discovery.org/). It has clear ties with many christian organizations. But they TRY to be coy about it and make it seem like it's not of a christian agenda. It's all about politics. I mean, come on. What is the largest religion in the US? Who do you think have to gain by having ID taught in schools alongside evolution? The whole "it's not a christian thing" argument is shoddy at best. It's of the same shoddyness as the AA "you need to believe in a god, but it doesn't matter which one" argument.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Discovery_Institute


It is a very common ploy to downplay science, first claiming that "science proponents are just as rigid as religious people". I've never once said that science is absolute. What I said was that you should not go against the teaching of what is the accepted scientific consensus. You are creating doubts of the validity of -the scientific method- whent there should be no doubt. If that sentence makes more sense to you. Cause, when we talk about science, what we talk about is the scientific method. Not -what- science knows. But -how- science knows. When you purposely go out against science (such as with Intelligent Design) - you are going against the scientific method.  If you don't see this as a religious agenda - I do not know what can convince you. If the importance of science was as established as you say - why is there even a QUESTION whether ID should be taught in schools? Why WOULD you need to mix religion and science? The only reason I can see is to protect a religious agenda and belief system. Not to further science.

As for ID and plate tectonics - sorry, that wasn't what I was trying to say. I was trying to explain the equivalent of ID and Evolution - and plate tectonics and "god is moving everything magically". Not that ID has anything to say about plate tectonics (although many ID proponents vehemently claim that plate tectonics do not exist - but thats another case ;)).


Unfalsifiable claims are of no validity. You CAN find out whether the mantle theory is correct - you just have to drill a hole deep enough. And we've come pretty far at doing exactly that. And there are other things that fit into the whole mantle theory that confirms the hypothesis so it's pretty much why it's accepted that it is thus. We've observed the effects, and we have testable hypothesis. It's NOT an unfalsifiable statement.

As for "god created man through evolution" - we really wouldn't see that even if we observed the evolution - if god didn't appear to us and proved that he existed. But that would be another point completely. For all intents and purposes, it is unfalsifiable, and therefore not a valid scientific hypothesis.


IN ANY CASE: all we are doing here is dancing around the same arguments and we're not getting anywhere. I see no point in further continuing this discussion if it's not going to lead anywhere.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Falsifiability


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: faemir on March 16, 2008, 03:44:22 PM
So do you have any qualms in this situation: x school teaches about evolution in science as basically what they believe to be correct (and that no other theory will prove it wrong etc), and then in religious studies they teach that some people believe in creationism?

Also, I never disagreed with your original statement about how they should put creationism over evolution. As basically outlined above, I think that evolution should be taught in science, and creationism in RS, along with many other religious-born ideas. Is there anything wrong with that?


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: noxon on March 16, 2008, 04:24:14 PM
Your first post about the matter said "Teach both, let them make their own mind up.". This was in direct respons to my quote about ID proponents trying to replace evolution with creationism.

Of course I interpreted this as you disagreeing with my stance that creationism has no business in science classes. Whether it shall be taught in social studies or wherever (and religion is a social studies class - just as phyisics is a science class - so you don't go off on a tangent against me again :P) is another case entirely. Keep religion out of the science classroom, that's all I'm saying. Of course people should be taught religion in school - but I would also stress that this MUST be on a fair basis - which it unfortunately rarely is. Usually, the cultural major religion is what gains the focus in religion class, and is taught as fact - while other religions are reduced to myths. Understandable, but I don't have to like it. A deep and broad understanding of human history, religious history, myths and science history (philosophical history) is of great importance, i think. And unfortunately, many people do not have the basic knowledge required to make rational decisions about life, the universe and everything. They just follow the stream.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Phantasmatron on March 16, 2008, 04:57:53 PM
Whoa.  This thread got long. 

Uhm, for a non-believer, what is the "considerable amount of validity" of a religion?

Nothing, really.  If you don't believe in it, then of course you don't think it's valid.  But what I was trying to say is that I think both science and faith have some good stuff to offer.  Neither one has all the answers, but they're both worth looking into.


Science CANNOT coexist with religion because religion is about explaining that which is supernatural. The supernatural, by its very definition, cannot be tested by science, because science can only test that which exists in nature.

That doesn't make any sense to me.  Just because they're based on different things doesn't mean they can't complement each other. Peanut butter is made of peanuts and jelly is made of fruit, but they make a delicious sandwich.  To me, science is about understanding how the world works and faith is about understand what the world is for.  We're made out of little particles called atoms that are also made out of smaller things?  Wow!  But that in no way disproves the existence of God. 



The core difference between science and religion is faith. Science professes to know ONLY based on testable evidence. Religion professes to know ONLY based on faith. Science covers for its uncertainties by stating that yes, we do not know everything, nor do we CLAIM to do so either, BUT whenever we DO claim to know, we also put forward testable hypothesis that can either prove or disprove our claim of knowledge. Religion covers for its uncertainties by stating "it is god, god is mysterious" and leaves it at that.

Religion uses testable hypotheses to a certain extent, too.  Some religions encourage people to pray about what they believe to find out if it is true, although I do admit that the results of this "testing" aren't exactly concrete or quantifiable.  But saying that religion covers for its uncertainties by saying "god is mysterious" and leaves it at that isn't really giving the really faithful people the credit they deserve.  You make it sound like all religious people are backwoods wackos who blindly believe in some popular mythology and think the internal combustion engine is run by little devils inside of it.  A lot of religious people are blind believers, and that's unfortunate.  But a lot of religious people honestly and truthfully believe to have had some kind of personal communication with God that has validated their beliefs in their minds.  And I don't think that's something you should brush off too easily just because you don't get where they're coming from.  That's like me saying that quantum physics is a load of crap because I read something about it once and I didn't understand it.



Do you not see the difference in science asking "where does the sun come from" and answering "it was born from a huge cloud of matter condencing into a ball of fire" (great simplification for illustrative purposes) and religion askin "where does the sun come from" and just answering "it was created by god".

Both answers to that question are valid.  I don't see the conflict. 


Or when it comes to questions that goes against the religion, such as "where do humans come from", towhich science has answered "evolution" but creationists claim are "intelligent design".

Again, I don't see the inherent conflict.  To me, neither one of these theories irrefutably contradicts the other.  Evolution could have simply been a tool God used in creating the universe, as faemir said.  I believe both happened, and I don't have a problem with that.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: charliedominici on March 17, 2008, 12:00:27 AM
God has a toolbox?
Cool! I could use a sawzall right now to RIP THIS STUPID F*KING THREAD  TO PIECES!!!
 :d'oh:


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: xoxoch on March 17, 2008, 12:50:27 AM
chill guys  :D

like phantasmatron says, why do we have to prove this or that theory as being the right one?


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: noxon on March 17, 2008, 02:30:04 AM
Phantasmatron: I'm just going to repeat a set of questions, now directed for you:
Try to answer these questions:  Why do you believe in the religion you do? Is it because of heritage and/or your surrounding culture? Why do different cultures have different religions? Can you trace the history of religion (even yours) through earlier versions of the religion or related cultures religions? What makes your religion unique - and conversely what makes it similar to other religions? All in all: why do you believe what you believe, and not something else?

Or rather, in the context of your reply to me: WHICH religion has "the answers" to the question "why is the world here"? Do you see that religion doesn't really answer any questions objectively, but give plenty of alternatives, none more provable than others?


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Phantasmatron on March 17, 2008, 09:22:24 AM
Phantasmatron: I'm just going to repeat a set of questions, now directed for you:
Try to answer these questions:  Why do you believe in the religion you do? Is it because of heritage and/or your surrounding culture? Why do different cultures have different religions? Can you trace the history of religion (even yours) through earlier versions of the religion or related cultures religions? What makes your religion unique - and conversely what makes it similar to other religions? All in all: why do you believe what you believe, and not something else?

Why do I believe the religion I do:

It's not because of my heritage.  The religion may have been in my family for several generations, but that's exactly why I've tried to step back and tried to look at it differently.  I don't want to believe something just because it's what I was taught.  And I've kind of decided that my religion is the one that makes the most logical sense to me.  And to a lesser extent, I think I've seen some minor evidence in my life that confirms some aspects of my beliefs.

Why different cultures have different religions:

Because they're different cultures.  Of course they'll have different takes on things.  Just because religions come from different roots, splinter and evolve and can trace their origins back through countless different "versions" doesn't mean they don't have some truth to offer.

Or rather, in the context of your reply to me: WHICH religion has "the answers" to the question "why is the world here"? Do you see that religion doesn't really answer any questions objectively, but give plenty of alternatives, none more provable than others?

My religion answers the question "why is the world here?"  And it answers it to my satisfaction. 

As far as proof goes, of course religion can't be proven.  That's kind of the whole point.  Although I think individuals can get personal evidence of it, and that works for them.  But just because something can't be proven doesn't mean it can't be true. 


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Matt Gillis on March 17, 2008, 10:29:56 AM
Wow guys, there are some very EXCELLENT points, and there is A LOT that I want to comment on.


. . . But for once in my life, (brace yourself) I won't say anything at all. We can debate this to all ends of the earth, in fact, I think in our own heads we all even argue with OURSELVES to figure this out. But I just want to draw attention back to one of my first posts (I think it was the first). To quote an author I enjoy:

" Faith is not granted by tangible proof. It comes from the heart and the soul. If a person needs proof of a gods existence then the very notion of spirituality is diminished to sensuality and we have reduced what is holy into what is logical"

Why does this matter? Because this thread doesn't matter, that's why. Sure, we've all said some good things, and accomplished things, but in the end, these two things are mutually exclusive. And I am not talking about science and religion (since some people think you can combine the two, and I won't say their any more wrong than I, or anyone else is) but I'm talking about a difference of views. Don't diminish each others view; faith doesn't NEED to make sense, in fact, it almost NEVER does. And as for science? That's wrong too. Since we are in a prog forum, I think its good to mention "The Great Debate" by DT. They had a quote in there that said "Of course this is new and we don't know where we are going, but that is what science is all about". And I think that's entirely true; science isn't about the known, its about discovery and new knowledge, which often, can be wrong (or right as well).

So each hold their ground, and this debate goes nowhere. I'm obviously not the arbiter here, and I am not trying to be sagacious, but I mean let people believe in what they believe. What I find funny, is that there is scientific "evidence" of faith helping people, whether it was the "faith" is wrong or not. If I feel comfortable and I can bond with a group of people like in a church (and no, I don't go to church and I have no religion) I will be happy. And in the end (all huge fights caused by religion aside) isn't it this glee that makes the world spin? If someone told me everything I believed in was wrong, I'd be less likely to hold the door open for him walking into a restraunt, get my drift? By you saying that science is right and religion is wrong (whether your argument is solid or not) is just like me saying hinduism is right and christianity is wrong. Let people believe in what they believe, and its their personal choice, not yours (and this goes two ways).

So I know we are not being hostile, but lets put this to bed before we all waste too much of our music time!  ;D :metal


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 17, 2008, 11:30:25 AM
Overall I think you probably score mmm.. 8 out of 10 for a good thread-ender there Matt :tup

I am glad that this thread achieved some serious discussion and I hope that we can continue to have political and religious discussions here. Well done to everyone involved for your thought-through arguments. The problem with this thread has largely been the inability to accept the view points of others so I think we should all remember this in future.

On a lighter note it has been very interesting to hear your views. I will lock this thread in 2 and a half hours (seemed like a good time) so that gives any of you who may wish to post a final thought some time.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: reapsta on March 17, 2008, 11:32:52 AM
Why Science vs. Religion. Both are good.


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: nimrod on March 17, 2008, 11:35:35 AM
Why Science vs. Religion. Both are good.

This is true. Probably caused problems from the start. Balls (quote from MP :P)


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: xoxoch on March 17, 2008, 11:40:29 AM
that was a good one to start it off  :metal I admire you guys for being so silver tounged about stuff like this ;D I find it extremely difficult to get such a matter across in written  :tup


Title: Re: Science vs Religion
Post by: Phantasmatron on March 17, 2008, 12:26:57 PM
Why Science vs. Religion. Both are good.

Damn, why did it take me two paragraphs to say that?  :lol