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JamesHackerMP

Can science and religion co-exist?

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Well, can they?

The OT (old testament) of the Christian Bible (or Jewish tanakh if you prefer) is full of ancient traditions---I avoid calling them "myths" because they're not myths in the literal sense of the word---like Noah's Ark, the creation story (two of them actually), the expulsion from paradise, and many others. Today, most Christians (or Jews) think of these traditions as presenting a greater picture of some sort. Like in the NT (new testament) when Jesus wishes to illustrate a point He tells a parable of some sort. (There are good reasons for Christians to normally avoid the OT when they search for this bigger picture, but that's a different topic.) I'm concentrating more on the Christian Bible, including the OT (the Jewish testament, if you will) due to the fact that I haven't read more than the first three surahs of the Qur'an, and no other religious texts (like Hindu, Buddhist, etc.)

My view, personally, is that religion and science can co-exist perfectly well IF you keep them separated. To draw religion into science causes one to ignore many scientific truths/facts and will only hold back scientific progress. To bring science into religion causes the nullification of a great deal of religious beliefs, and brings about a similar result. What results, effectively, is a "Mutually Assured Destruction" of science and religion caused by trying to combine them. To put it in scientific terms, it's like matter coming into contact with anti-matter: the result is the annihilation of both materials (and a rather large, destructive surge of energy in the process).

Most thinking Christians today realize this problem. My copy of the Bible actually contains a footnote on the creation story:

...There is nothing in these early chapters that commits us to any particular scientific view of the world or man, or that would exclude the evolution hypothesis.

I wish to point out that this particular bible was published in the 1950s. It is considered to be one of the more moderate to conservative translations (revised standard version). Yet for some reason, more fundamentalist Christians take the view, even these days, that what's in the Bible is not only literal truth, but applicable to science as well as spiritual matters. To me, this is dangerous. Nothing in the Bible is meant to support or refute science; nothing in science is meant to support or to refute what's in our religious texts, particularly the Bible.

If you can follow that simple rule, if you can contain religion and science within separate containers as you would with a particle of matter and one of antimatter, then neither can be dangerous to the other. Neither will contradict the other. Neither will intrude upon the other's teachings. It would, in effect, be a better world in which religion and science cannot be brought within the same container to annihilate each other. Scientists would not feel under threat from religious fanatics, and we wouldn't have things like creationism in our schools. Religious people, just the same, would not feel that their lifestyles and beliefs are somehow "under threat" from science. This kind of paranoia should be a thing of the past.

I realize this isn't exactly going to satisfy the scientist or the theologian, the conservative or the liberal. So be it.

Thoughts?

Edited by JamesHackerMP

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I never could understand the problem.  If one believes in a God, then that God created the science. 

If the science disagrees with the writing, it must be the writing that is wrong, because the writing was the work of men, and the science was the work of the God.

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It is mathematically impossible to have such an universal scheme without existence of an organizer mind. 

So existence of God is a scientific fact.

When it comes to religion, we still need the same possibility indicators and Islam so Quran fits with it considering its being written in a perfect Arabic  grammar features, being thousands of verses with zero contradictions, with informations that could not be known in its time of writting ... etc...
 

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6 hours ago, Altai said:

So existence of God is a scientific fact.

What is the scientific proof to back your claim?

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22 hours ago, bcsapper said:

I never could understand the problem.  If one believes in a God, then that God created the science. 

If the science disagrees with the writing, it must be the writing that is wrong, because the writing was the work of men, and the science was the work of the God.

How does one reliably determine what was the message of the god and what was just the writing of men?    Well don't worry my friend, for $49.95 I will send the truth your way!

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Just now, Slick said:

How does one reliably determine what was the message of the god and what was just the writing of men?    Well don't worry my friend, for $49.95 I will send the truth your way!

You have to believe the science, because the science is the true word of the God.  None of the writing is worth a damn.  The ramblings of a few peasants with too much Neanderthal blood still coursing through their veins. 

In fact, it's all so clear now.  Science is the one true God!  It's not Odin or Vishnu after all.  It's Science.  Praise Science!

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1 minute ago, bcsapper said:

You have to believe the science, because the science is the true word of the God.  None of the writing is worth a damn.  The ramblings of a few peasants with too much Neanderthal blood still coursing through their veins. 

In fact, it's all so clear now.  Science is the one true God!  It's not Odin or Vishnu after all.  It's Science.  Praise Science!

Would that be the most miraculous and salvational realization? Let us dare to dream.

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On 10/10/2018 at 9:14 PM, bcsapper said:

You have to believe the science, because the science is the true word of the God.  None of the writing is worth a damn.  The ramblings of a few peasants with too much Neanderthal blood still coursing through their veins. 

In fact, it's all so clear now.  Science is the one true God!  It's not Odin or Vishnu after all.  It's Science.  Praise Science!

Science doesn't contain a moral guide. Like in Jurassic Park, Dr Malcolm warns the scientists "You were so concerned with if you COULD do it, you didn't stop to consider if you SHOULD." It's amoral, not moral or immoral. That is where the two realms are separate.

Nothing against atheists. And a lot of scientists are atheists. Then again, a lot of people who reject science are likewise single-minded in their thinking, and reject science. Why is it so unacceptable to both crowds to reject the other? That of course, doesn't take into account secular humanism, of course, which is a moral guide in itself. But there has to be something more than science in the universe and in our concept of it, just as there ought to be something more than religion. Absolutes are not a good thing.

Such as statement as I just made will, naturally, not satisfy either side, which I realize. But I stand by it nonetheless.

Edited by JamesHackerMP

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13 minutes ago, JamesHackerMP said:

But there has to be something more than science in the universe and in our concept of it,

Why?  Why does there have to be anything more?  It's only because we lack the brain power to fully comprehend the universe we live in.  Why should we?  The ant doesn't.  The dog doesn't.  The only difference between us and them is that we've reached a point where we realize we don't.

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16 hours ago, bcsapper said:

Why?  Why does there have to be anything more?  It's only because we lack the brain power to fully comprehend the universe we live in.  Why should we?  The ant doesn't.  The dog doesn't.  The only difference between us and them is that we've reached a point where we realize we don't.

Funny someone else hasn't shown up...but of course, I don't want to jinx it. Thought it would be right up their alley.

 

Edited by JamesHackerMP

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On 10/10/2018 at 5:23 PM, GostHacked said:

What is the scientific proof to back your claim?

I had a topic before about it, I think it was named "Whether or not there is God/s" or something similar.

 

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There is a lot in the Bible, particularly the old testament, that is complete nonsense if you take it literally. This is one reason you cannot "mix" them together. To treat the bible as if it were a scientific text turns it into trash. For example, the lack of sufficient gene pool from just Adam and Eve, or the animals that were on the Ark, or the fact that you couldn't fit all the animals into an ark 300 cubits wide (or however big they say the damn thing was); turning Mrs Lot into a pillar of salt, (need I go on?)

Nothing in the bible can support science, either. Because if you try to make it support science it will again fall short of the mark. I think Betsy tried to "prove" in another thread that the bible supports science. That's also nonsensical; especially because it was not written directly by God but by his followers who knew nothing of modern science. Nor was it intended to one day support science. Because, again, when you try to do that it doesn't quite do the trick.

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On 10/12/2018 at 12:08 PM, bcsapper said:

Why?  Why does there have to be anything more?  It's only because we lack the brain power to fully comprehend the universe we live in.  Why should we?  The ant doesn't.  The dog doesn't.  The only difference between us and them is that we've reached a point where we realize we don't.

Will we ever have the brain power to fully comprehend the universe? We certainly don't now!

Edited by JamesHackerMP

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6 hours ago, JamesHackerMP said:

Will we ever have the brain power to fully comprehend the universe? We certainly don't now!

Perhaps not.  In the absence of a God as the reason for our existence there's no reason why we should.  We are no different than the ant or the dog previously mentioned in terms of deserving or destiny.  We just have bigger brains.

I would hope that we eventually understand it all, but we have to survive that long first, and I don't see that happening.  Maybe the descendants of the few that (hopefully) get off the planet will figure it all out.

Edited by bcsapper

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2 hours ago, JamesHackerMP said:

There is a lot in the Bible, particularly the old testament, that is complete nonsense if you take it literally....

Nothing in the bible can support science, either. Because if you try to make it support science it will again fall short of the mark. I think Betsy tried to "prove" in another thread that the bible supports science. That's also nonsensical; especially because it was not written directly by God but by his followers who knew nothing of modern science....

Why is there any reason to believe a god was involved at all? It's not like the so called inspired writings contain any revolutionary new ideas or information that suggest supernatural influence. So, considering all the holes and nonsense doesn't it seem more likely that it was just written by ignorant, ancient men trying to create meaning? Upstart mythologies were a dime a dozen back then.



 

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Well, the crux of my argument, "can religion & science co-exist"?, assumes that it's not just a bunch of baseless ancient superstitions or as you put it, "Upstart mythologies". I'm not asking you to agree with me, but that was the OP. (Though I'm not trying to get dictatorial on you and tell you what to post, don't get me wrong.)

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Great, but is there any rational reason to believe the writings aren't just ancient babblings? Anything from native legends, to bible stories, to the word salad spewed by Deepak Chopra can coexist with science, provided that it doesn't pretend to be more than just myth. However, if we strive to believe in as many truths as possible and discard falsehoods then religions will be examined.

Just remember that today, science tells us that the essence of nature is self-actualization. 

You and I are seekers of the infinite.
We can no longer afford to live with selfishness.

Only a being of the dreamtime may generate this spark of synchronicity. You may be ruled by bondage without realizing it. Do not let it eradicate the richness of your journey. Where there is bondage, conscious living cannot thrive. 

The preceding italicized text was created by a Deepak Chopra BS generator and is not necessarily the view of the station or network. However, it can also coexist with science as long as we don't also want to take it seriously.

Edited by Guest

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On 10/15/2018 at 1:01 PM, JamesHackerMP said:

Well, the crux of my argument, "can religion & science co-exist"?, assumes that it's not just a bunch of baseless ancient superstitions or as you put it

Why does it assume that? If one starts with false premises, one ends up at incorrect conclusions. 

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One cannot make assumptions about religion if they know nothing about it.  Belief in God is by faith and the Bible says faith is a gift of God. (King James Bible)  Modern translations are corrupted because they are based on some corrupt manuscripts.  

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On 10/19/2018 at 12:19 AM, blackbird said:

One cannot make assumptions about religion if they know nothing about it.  Belief in God is by faith and the Bible says faith is a gift of God. (King James Bible)  Modern translations are corrupted because they are based on some corrupt manuscripts.  

You just used the bible as evidence of itself. What if I said:

One cannot make assumptions about the wizarding world if they know nothing about it. Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone says that the Mirror of Erised shows the "deepest, most desperate desire of our hearts." not an actual image. 
 

Citing a passage from the book itself doesn't add any credence to the existence or function of the world or the mirror does it?
I could go on to say that, like Santa, belief in wizards (and witches of course) is by faith; which, is really just the same as saying please ignore the plot holes and lack of evidence.

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On 10/21/2018 at 11:32 AM, Slick said:

You just used the bible as evidence of itself. What if I said:

One cannot make assumptions about the wizarding world if they know nothing about it. Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone says that the Mirror of Erised shows the "deepest, most desperate desire of our hearts." not an actual image. 
 

Citing a passage from the book itself doesn't add any credence to the existence or function of the world or the mirror does it?
I could go on to say that, like Santa, belief in wizards (and witches of course) is by faith; which, is really just the same as saying please ignore the plot holes and lack of evidence.

Your opinions are perfectly valid, but I have to disagree.

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5 hours ago, eyeball said:

Only by force.

Force is the tool of religion. The only tool of science is truth. 

Edited by Bonam
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