Sandra Bullock, as a scientist lost in space, struggles with faith in "Gravity." Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Sandra Bullock, as a scientist lost in space, struggles with faith in “Gravity.” Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures


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We all know science and religion don’t meet, right? After all, the recent  “Ham on Nye” duel between atheist Science Guy Bill Nye and creationist advocate Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis was a national sensation.

We all know wrong – or mostly so, says sociologist Elaine Howard Ecklund.

In the land of science, it turns out, there nearly as many believers and churchgoers as there are to be found in the nation at large and many in each camp say science and faith have a lot to offer each other.

Sunday, the Dialogue on Science, Ethics and Religion program within the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) presented a major national study examining how these two worldviews do — and often don’t — communicate.

Indeed, Ecklund said her research finds that scientists who identify as evangelical are more religious than American evangelicals who are not in science and that 48 percent of evangelicals believe science and religion can work in collaboration. And right there at the DoSER symposium, to discuss collaboration in the future, was Galen Carey,  vice president for government relations for the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE), which is advising AAAS in the project.

Ecklund, director of Rice University’s Religion and Public Life Program, presented preliminary results of the study, “Religious Understandings of Science,” based on a survey of 10,000 U.S. adults including scientists, evangelical Protestants and the general public including 300 in-depth interviews with Christians (more than 140 of whom were evangelicals) Jews and Muslims.

Among the findings:

  • Nearly 36 percent of scientists have no doubt about God’s existence
  • 18 percent of scientists attended weekly religious services (compared with 20 percent of the general U.S. population
  • 15 percent of scientists consider themselves very religious (19 percent)
  • 13.5 percent of scientists read religious texts weekly (17 percent)

But research also shows where the threads of suspicion run. A 2009 study by Pew Research found a wider gap between scientists and the general public on religion. And Ecklund’s new study also found:

  • 22 percent of scientists and 20 percent of the general population think most religious people are hostile to science
  • 22 percent of the general population thinks scientists are hostile to religion
  • 27 percent of Americans feel that science and religion are in conflict
  • Of those who feel science and religion are in conflict, 52 percent sided with religion

“There is enormous stereotyping about this issue (of science in conflict with religion) and not very good information,” said Ecklund in a press release.

“The two groups don’t have to approach religion with an attitude of combat,” Ecklund said. “Rather, they should approach it with collaboration in mind.”

Carey said the NAE is preparing a resource booklet for pastors and Sunday school classes to foster thoughtful discussion between science and religion. Such discussions, he said, will be far more beneficial to both groups than the claims too often found in “direct mail pieces that say outrageous things.”

The findings in this new study dovetail with earlier research by Ecklund’ for her 2010 book.  “Science vs. Religion: What Scientists Really Think.”

Back then, Ecklund surveyed 1,700 scientists and interviewed 275. She found nearly 50% identified with one of the world’s major traditions. Among the remainder, 20% still consider themselves spiritual, and many atheists and agnostics still go to church — for their spouse, their kids or the community of friends.

Ecklund told a 2010 Faith Angle conference that religious scientists rarely went public about their faith. At work, they feared a negative reaction from their colleagues. A church, they feared a negative reaction from fellow believers.

Ecklund advocated pushing the doors open, saying,  “potential allies for science remain untapped within a religious American public.”

Four years later, Ecklund has bigger numbers — AAAS presented this as the largest ever study of science and religion. And there are more indications that collaboration could be possible.

But are the two camps any closer? The popular reaction to the “HamonNye” event would say no. But sham debate though it was, everyone was in the same room (or on streaming video site) watching.

Do you think debate can become conversation?  Can science and religion each answer questions the other is asking about the nature of the human person?

65 Comments

  1. Matthew Moore

    “Do you think debate can become conversation? Can science and religion each answer questions the other is asking about the nature of the human person?”

    It doesn’t matter in the slightest what scientists or religious people think or feel about religion the two worldviews are fundamentally polar opposites. It wouldn’t matter if 100% of scientists were religious (or purported to be, these studies make no attempt to pin people down on their actual views, differentiating from something vague and deistic).

    The closing question is ridiculous because if religion had any answers it would have answered them for goodness sake! As religion is forced begrudgingly by modern science to drop certain dogmas while retaining far too many others you may not claim that they’ve come ‘closer together’, rather science and rational thought is diminishing religion in society.

    Religion already has all the answers and may not be questioned, science doesn’t claim to yet have all the answers and keeps questioning.

    • As Christians, we should enthusiastically support and encourage scientific exploration and discovery. We should confidently promote the following of the evidence, and have no fear as to where that scientific evidence will lead. We just ask that the scientific community do the same. Christians should not be “anti-science” – nor should scientists be “anti-Christian.”

    • Matthew, religion can’t answer anything but Christ can and He did. He answered that the evils in this world do not come bad leadership, or social injustice. He said the evils come from within. Sin starts in the heart. He gave the answers to fulfillment (look up the 8 Beatitudes). The answers are in The Bible, you just can’t listen with your ears or read with your eyes…you have to listen, hear, and see with your heart.

    • Deacon John M. Bresnahan

      Properly understood and defined many Christians do find evolution compatible with Christianity. For example, the creation of the universe and finally the creation of man was done step by step (day by day) according to the book of Genesis and to God–the Bible says- a day is as a thousand years. Some have even made the case that evolution is not a pure scientific theory, but a theory created by scientists unwittingly turning the beginning of the Bible into a scientific theory.
      The important thing is to believe that God is the ultimate Guiding Hand behind all that exists, all that happens, all that is created.

      • DEACON JOHN,
        I was a liberal Catholic for most of my adult life and found the idea that evolution could be ‘God’s way of creation’ a very compelling one. I was convinced of it for a long time.

        Other factors convinced me that Jesus couldn’t possibly have anything to do with evolution. I saw it as a matter of intellectual honesty.

      • Even if each of the biblical creation days “were as a thousand years”, that would provide nowhere near the 14 billiion years the evolutionists state as the age of the universe, nor even anywhere near the 4.6 billion years the evolutionists state as the age of the earth. So either Genesis 1, or the theory of evolution, is totally falsified as actual history. Can’t have both.

        Furthermore, there is no possible rational reconcilation between the theory of evolution’s very specific claim that humans originated via materialistic, purposeless evolution from an ape-like “common ancestor” animal, and the Bible’s very specific claim of a supernatural, direct creation of Adam (Gen. 2:7) and Eve (Gen. 2:21-22) with NO animal ancestors at all. No reconciliation.

        Finally, the theory of evolution denies The Fall of humanity (Gen. 3), claiming that death was always present on earth, despite the clear testimony of Romans 5:12 that death was not present until The Fall. As Bozarth, Zindler, and other evolutionists point out, evolution necessarily puts Jesus on the unemployment line. Hence evolution is NOT compatible with Christianity.

  2. The more the scientific research & technological progress “More & More Almighty God is Revealed”. Basic & Fundamental Science never incompatible with God. Only so called unprovable & baseless research by so called super scientists claim like that. Only fool says in his heart there is no God (Psalms 14:1).

  3. I’m not sure what the point of a conversation between Christianity and science would be, other than preventing nonscientific views from doing harm. I don’t see any reason that science itself would give ground. Christianity makes plainly anti-scientific claims: Virgin birth, resurrection, walk on water, heal the dead, etc. It’s hard to see how there can be a reconciling with science on things like that.

    • These claims of Christianity you cite are not anti-scientific. Christianity does not claim that virgin birth, resurrection, walking on water, and raising the dead occur within the confines of the natural order. Indeed, it is precisely because the natural order prohibits such things that their occurrence is noteworthy. Christianity would agree fully with science in claiming that the natural order prevents a human being from walking on water – the assertion of just such an event having happened is therefore the assertion that the natural laws were locally suspended, as they were in all such miracles.
      Science does a fine job in describing the natural order. However, it can say nothing about the origin of that order, or about whether or not some being outside it can violate or suspend it, or whether any such being has done so.
      Fortunately, science does not attempt to make such claims, which is why there is no conflict between Christianity, properly understood, and science, properly understood.

  4. The endeavor of science is the best way we have of understanding the natural world. It tentatively reveals truths that are tested, retested, and validated continuously in a self-correcting process. No approach to understanding is more robust or has benefited humanity more. Unfortunately, many religious people think that one of the ancient texts or attendant dogma provides an equally robust way to understand the natural world. However, it cannot and it does not. We should be awed and humbled by the knowledge, understanding and progress produced by the practice of science, not by imagined gods, ancient texts or other ideas that originated from more fanciful thinking and far less robust processes.

  5. Deacon John M. Bresnahan

    There certainly are scientists who are believers in God and there are believers who have no problem with science (even evolution).
    The trouble is that scientists have become stereotyped in the media-and elsewhere-as adamant non-believers and believers have been stereotyped as inevitably anti-science.
    What causes these stereotypes??? Partially it is because the media hammers away at those stereotypes. Everyone has heard about the Galileo case –yet less reported is the fact he remained a believer and his daughter was a nun. And almost never reported is that the theory about the creation of the universe called “The Big Bang” (that virtually all scientists ascribe to today) was originally propounded by a Jesuit priest and was ignored because he was a priest . Rarely reported is the fact that the “father of genetics research was an Augustinian monk. And ignored is Louis Pasteur’s devout Catholic faith (he loved to pray the rosary).
    For some reason there are those–both science oriented and religious believers who want to keep this “war” going.
    Consequently, I find Ms. Grossman’s article a breath of fresh air.

  6. In my “liberal” Christian (Catholic) world-view, scientific advances support rather than threaten faith. Moreover, some kind of faith-based ethical system seems desirable to mediate in developing and applying the technology that derives from science. I think that the adherents of most variants of other religions (Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam) have similar views. The alleged conflict between science and religion only arises at the periphery—between a certain brand of “fundamentalist” secularists and Christians.

    Few of the secularists are actual scientists—i.e. have peer-reviewed research status. Instead they hero-worship Dawkins and a few other scientists who try to usurp the role of science spokespersons. The fundamentalist Christians cling to bizarre and inflexible interpretations of the bible based not on a deep historical/theological scholarship, but on an authority they assign to themselves.

    Frankly, I find the arguments about the alleged incompatibility between religion and science phoney and passé. The strongest arguments both for and against faith/religion derive not from science and still less from scientists, but from philosophers.

  7. All this article proves is Scientists are just as victimized by religious indoctrination as the rest of us – only less so.

    95% of all Physicists are Atheist.
    If the world were only made of such scientists there wouldn’t be enough people on earth to conduct a sunday mass.

    • Deacon John M. Bresnahan

      Max, there is a book you should read that might broaden your horizons.
      It is titled: “There is a God–How the world’s most notorious atheist changed his mind” by Antony Flew.
      Flew was a philosopher and former atheist. He set the agenda for modern atheism with his 1950 essay “Theology and Falsification.” which became the most widely reprinted philosophical publication of the last half century.
      His major intellectual comimitment was to “follow the argument wherever it leads. It led him to a belief in God as Creator.
      The book won the Christianity Today Book Award a few years back.
      .

      • DEACON JOHN,
        Thanks for your suggestion.

        I’ve read “There is a God – How the World’s Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind”, by Flew. I read it when I was a Catholic some time ago. At the time, it did broaden my mind (or so I thought). I had read C.S. Lewis years before and was most impressed with “Mere Christianity”. Lewis’ logic made more sense to me. Jesus was either a “Liar, Lunatic or Lord” – I had to concur at the time.

        In my Christian life I had occasional doubts. Not many – but each time they arose I dug into dozens of books about Christ. All the usual books you would refer me to. Even Has Jung’s “On Being a Christian”.

        Very few people seem to understand that Atheists are usually extremely well read regarding religion and Jesus in particular. Most of us were Christians for decades before waking up to the truth.

        We have read the Bible also – repeatedly. I have had the experience of “loving Christ”. and weeping for joy as I received my communion.

        But God isn’t. That is why I changed my mind about Jesus.
        And I pursued the Bart Ehrmann books regarding Jesus. I have read them all.

        In retrospect, Antony Flew’s book was among the least persuasive.

        • Deacon John M. Bresnahan

          It is good to read as many books as possible in order to sharpen one’s own faith–or lack of faith.
          I presume you meant Hans Kung not Jung . I read his book that you named but found myself wondering why a man was a priest and theologian when he couldn’t even find anything good to say about St. Francis of Assisi.
          While in college I read a number of works by Bertrand Russell (the hero of atheists at the time). And I was shocked that in the books I read by him how many errors in history he made in his quest to put down religion and God. His field was, I believe, Math, but he seemed to have the Ivy League arrogance that says–if you got an advanced degree in Math-or science, or zoology then you can set yourself up as an expert on anything.
          Max–it has been good jousting with you. I hope someday God gives you the gift of faith–for it is a wonderful gift for those who recognize and embrace the gift.

          • DEACON JOHN,
            Thanks.
            But I hope our jousting has only begun.
            As a joyous atheist who was once a joyous Catholic, I bring a bring a perspective that is unusually sensitive to the beautiful practices of religious devotion.

            But I am harsh about the price we pay for it.
            Further, I argue that even more beauty, wonder and love lies outside of religion. Indeed religion clips the wings of such things.

        • Jesus died for you and rose from the dead. In doing so, the power of the Resurrection imprinted his image on the Shroud of Turin (regardless of the ludicrous recent claim that it was because of the 33A.D. earthquake causing radiation as people continue trying to disprove its origins). The Sudarium of Oviedo was also placed on Jesus after His death on the Cross. It has been venerated since long before the erroneous carbon dating of the Shroud would place it and it has been scientifically linked to the Shroud. See *Comparative study of the Shroud of Turin and Sudarium of Oviedo*. They were on the same man. They also hold the same blood type, rare AB. See also the Eucharistic Miracle of Lanciano. The Eucharist turned into human heart flesh, and not only traces of it, but it is a complete cross section of the human heart. That it has not decayed in hundreds of years is miraculous in and of itself, but the other scientifically determined aspects of it are fantastic. The blood is type AB, rare and interestingly the Universal Recipient. All these relics were of course discovered hundreds and hundreds of years before the ability to type blood, so it isn’t possible that it was placed there as a hoax. As rare is the blood type is, it would be quite a coincidence, too. Jesus lived, and died for you, shedding His precious type AB blood, taking on your sin and the sin of the world, through His universal recipient blood. I love science!

          I pray you may open your heart to Him before it is too late.

      • For clarity, my previous comment is in regard to Atheist Max’s statement:

        “95% of all Physicists are Atheist”

        I would like a citation for this statistic since my anecdotal experience of 20+ years as a practicing PhD physicist isn’t consistent with this assertion.

        • Because I was asked:

          93% of the members of the National Academy of Sciences were Atheist according to PEW research in 2010….
          and Michael Shermer’s research says it is closer to 95% as of 2013.

          These members of NAS are Physicists.

          http://www.humanevents.com/2010/06/17/the-atheistdominated-national-academy-of-sciences/

    • Steve the layman

      For once I would like to have an atheist prove that there is no G-d. I do not want to here how an organism made it through the atmosphere in order to begin evolution without explaining how that particular organism was created in the first place. Please no theories that sound plausible but scientifically unproven.

  8. Scientific TRUTH and religious TRUTH should be compatible and are! It’s when scientists say, “There is NO God so He can’t be considered as a cause or designer…” that a disservice is done to religious & nonreligious people. When religious leaders insist that the earth and everything in it was made in six literal 24 hour days, they do HARM to people of faith and to those looking for truth in the religious realm. They also bring reproach on God himself because of their dogmatic stance and unwillingness to reexamine their doctrines. The Bible is not a science textbook but where it touches on science it is accurate. Regarding science FACT, the fossil record shows that “life exploded” in what is called “the Cambrian explosion”. All of a sudden, in a short period of time, MANY life forms came on the scene. Some were very complex and unrelated to other life forms of the same time period. The diversity and specialized body types would suggest “intelligent design”.

    • CMR, How many scientists do you know? I believe the vast majority of non-religious scientists would say “there is no evidence for a god” rather than “there is NO God”. I also think you need to consider other religious texts as potential sources of truth – why only the Bible? As for the Cambrian Explosion, the “short period of time” you refer to is thought to have lasted about 30 million years, which is a *relatively* short period of time by geological standards. And please reference any credible science to support that “The diversity and specialized body types would suggest “intelligent design”, because no credible scientist is going to take your word for it.

      Regardless, as long as religious beliefs do not cause harm or impede the understanding or progress of science, I have absolutely no problem with them. The problem, as I see it, is that science has been undermining religious and superstitious beliefs for hundreds of years and it will likely continue to do so. If religious people are genuinely concerned with that, religions will evolve to keep pace and avoid direct conflicts with science, because science will likely not regress to a point where it is no longer based on evidence, sound logic and reasoning.

      • Agree with some things you say but not with others.
        Yes—science will continue to challenge religion which will have to adapt or die. But I think science will continue to challenge the Dawkinsonian atheism/secularism as well, for it too has its own set of (non-scientific) dogmas which are constantly repeated (in the name of science) as if self-evident. One such dogma is this constant refrain that “there is no evidence for a god”.

        In science, you add certain chemicals to a solution in a test tube, you check the outcome, and then you legitimately conclude “there is/is no evidence of XYZ in this solution.” It is simply unreasonable to view the question of God’s existence as the equivalent of such a science experiment.

        So for the theist, the sum of things appears, on balance, as evidence for “intelligent design”, but her conclusion cannot legitimately be advanced as a scientific one. Reasonable atheists look at the same evidence, weigh it differently and conclude that things have emerge by blind chance. That’s ok, provided the atheist does not advance her view in the name of science. Both conclusions are plausible inferences based on the same evidence. The matter should be viewed as a court-room decision where different parties interpret the evidence differently.

        But the dogmatic “no evidence” brigade attempt to hijack the name of science for themselves, and echo the Dawkin’s assertion that faith is held “in the teeth of” reason—a tiresome assertion which has been thoroughly trashed in the subsequent literature (e.g. “Dawkins’ God” by Mcgrath.)

        • The requirement to show evidence is ‘tiresome’?

          How do you answer the suicide bomber
          who, for purely religious reasons decides he must kill infidels in order to save his own soul?

          You have nothing to say to him! You have defanged your own argument against him.

          You cannot say, “Wait. Stop. There is no evidence your beliefs are wrong”

          There is no evidence any religion is true.
          Why can’t you accept this?

          • “Religious reasons” may include insanity or pure evil. My Masters degree in science taught me only that science is the search for truth..and is limited to the human senses and artificial extensions thereof. Hopefully, all will embrace faith in the Almighty before meeting Him.

        • Chico889, by “blind chance”, I really hope you are not referring to evolution, which has nothing to do with “blind chance”. If you are, you must know precious little about the topic. It also seems like you have fallen for Ken Ham’s argument that “we all look at the same data but some of us interpret it differently”, which is especially ridiculous if you say in the next breath that no evidence would change your position. Why try to fool people into thinking that you even care about evidence, let alone possess the integrity to evaluate it? And to say that “Both conclusions are plausible inferences based on the same evidence”, without defining “plausible” is just silly. Because I would bet that your “plausible” and my “plausible” are two very different things.

          In addition, the matter is “viewed as a court-room decision where different parties interpret the evidence differently”. That is exactly what peer review in science is all about. But just like in court, if you want to make your case, you have to bring evidence.

          So if you wish to quell the refrain, “there is no evidence for a god”, you will have to produce evidence to the contrary and use sound logic and reason to convince people that any conclusions you draw from the evidence are actually supported by the evidence.

          Having said all that, I do believe that religion can play an important role in an individual’s life, not unlike other self-regulation and coping mechanisms. The problems occur when people try to make religion something it is not – like science.

    • So you are saying that the upfront and literal (in both Hebrew and English), sequential 24-hour-day, claims of Genesis 1 are doing HARM to the Christian faith?

      • Of course they are.

        It employs a rather nonsensical view of the Bible that forgoes any of its strength as a literary work in exchange for phony dishonest claims that it is a work of science or history.

        Literalism requires Christians to lie about the basis of their religious belief in public, and to close their mind to what is observed. It is revels in simplistic ignorance, authoritarian interpretations and extols a lack of personal reflection in favor of delusional self-satisfaction.

        • So you must necessarily say the same things about John 3:16 and 1 Cor. 15:3-4. Rational consistency demands that you necessarily apply your “literalism = phony dishonest claims” principle across the entire Bible, not just the historical claims of Gen. 1.

          So, in fact, evolution MUST necessarily be incompatible with Christianity (since your principle must be applied not just to Genesis but to Gospels as well, not just Creation but also to the Cross as well.)

          • Why would I have to do that? Your view of such passages is purely subjective in nature. One based on leaps of illogical thinking and fallacious thinking. A perfect example of the kind of dishonest discourse required by literalism. The idea that if one part is flawed or factually incorrect, then the entire literary value of a piece is null is rather infantile and dishonest. Your argument would mean that parable is a useless form of discourse since by its nature need not be a factually true story. But any reader of the Bible knows parable is a key form of discussing moral and spiritual ideas.

            Evolution is not compatible with your form of Christianity because you have adopted a view which requires self-deception and phony assertions concerning religious belief. You make assertions that the Bible produces clear factual evidence to support your belief and you deny faith. But the truth is your belief is entirely based on no actual evidence and nothing but faith.

  9. The supposed conflict between science and religion is mostly the construct of a media looking for good ratings. So, they pit Nye against Ham, an atheist who supposedly represents science and a fundamentalist who supposedly represents religion, thus creating a “national sensation.” You’ll never see a media outlet sponsoring a conversation offered between Dr. Francis Collins and Fr. Robert Spitzer, because both men are respectful of the fact that both science and religion have much to offer the human community.
    I can only speak for my own Catholic tradition, but I can say with confidence that there is no necessary conflict between evolution as a theory that explains the development and variety of life on Earth, including human life, and Catholic faith. Any who say otherwise lack an understanding of one or the other or both.

  10. Interesting dialogue and points made. I’m a pastor who loves reading about science and all the fantastic and fascinating structures of the universe, both on the mind-boggling cosmic scale and the microscopic level. I see no “conflict” between science and faith. Both are wonderful ways of knowing and understanding. Science is a blessing to our understanding of the questions: What, Where, When, and How? Faith adds the much needed perspection of: Who and Why? — We need both ways of knowing to fully realize the wonders of creation. I’m happy to embrace and make use of both ways of exploring who we are and why we are here.

  11. Science was created for man .Not that science created man . There is no doubt that God created the universe and all the things contained in it.
    Science claims millions of planets and other heavenly bodies
    in the universe which it has not seen and claims it has found and emphasizes non-existence of God . How foolish!

    Do we have to believe the creator who has created everything or the discoverer who discovers everything what creator has created and seen nothing (physically)?

    A Great example of man’s( Scientist’s) foolishness was seen when they were observing a big asteroid approach earth 28,000 km away from earth as if it is going to collide earth.

    At the same time they missed a small asteroid whiz past the Russian city with a bang and light brighter than sunlight and landing safely on plain ice land. It was God’s wonderful message that he is in total control of the universe. The great news was no body was killed or injured seriously. All minor injurious to wake all of us up.

    Kindly note all the heavenly bodies go as per his plan . He is the master of all things. Let us bow down and worship our Almighty God who is personified in Our Lord Jesus Christ. All Praise and Glory to Him.

  12. Where’s the link for the actual AAAS study? I do know that things like time diaries show 20 percent of Americans in general attend services weekly, but were the same surveys used on scientists?

    Also, **repeated** research has shown that **PhD level scientists** are much less religious than the general public.

    And, when the general public thinks about “scientist,” that’s usually who comes to mind.

    • Cathy Lynn Grossman

      Ecklund’s earlier work on elite university science profs did show them significantly less religious. The new research, however, deliberately widened the net to reach people in science-related occupations — corporate R&D, medicine, etc.

      • I think that scientists and those in science-related occupations are very different. Categorizing a physician as a scientist is like categorizing an engineer as a scientist, each uses the findings of science in their work but they typically do not generate those findings. In addition, I find it unlikely that Ecklund could not predict what effect such widening would have on the results of this study, relative to others that have been published.

        The reason I mention this is because there are many physicians who are young earth creationists, but I think that young earth creationists and scientist are mutually exclusive groups.

  13. In my recent book God Revised: How Religion Must Evolve in a Scientific Age, I make the point that science and religion operate in different domains. Here’s the key question: if science could discover all facts whatsoever, so that we knew everything there was to know, would religion therefore be unnecessary? The answer, counter-intuitively, is that religion would be even more important in that case, because we’d have a lot more knowledge to figure out the meaning of. Science asks what we know to be true; religion asks how we can live a life of meaning and purpose in light of what we know. And it’s no surprise that many scientists understand this dynamic, though admittedly some have an outdated view of God and religion, just as many traditional religionists have an outdated view of how the world works.

    • Since science operates only within the natural order, and neither can nor does attempt to make any factual claims beyond that natural order, science can as a theoretical best derive a full description of the natural order and its mechanisms.

      Religion, on the other hand, claims to reveal facts external to the natural order, something science cannot and does not attempt to do.

      Science, therefore, taken to its theoretical maximum explanatory limits would still not begin to encroach on the sphere in which religion operates.

      • I never cared much for Gould’s idea of NOMA. I propose that the “sphere in which religion operates” is not approachable, let alone encroach-able, and, therefore, cannot possibly be understood. Could you provide even a hypothetical example of a “fact external to the natural order” and then tell me of what utility it would be?

        I more or less side with Charles Darwin here, if there is a creator/designer god then, “I feel most deeply that the whole subject is too profound for the human intellect. A dog might as well speculate on the mind of Newton.— Let each man hope & believe what he can.—”

  14. All religion is severe Delusional MENTAL ILLNESS! A delusion that there is an imaginary MALE Deity who judges, punishes and rewards us for proper or improper behavior is insane! The bible is a collection of silly myths written by frightened men who had NO understanding of the basic science that a grade school child of today has, who didn’t even know of lands outside their little middle east location.
    Humans cannot deal with their animal instincts and SEX, so they make up rules to cope with them and call this Religion. Humans are the only creature that can contemplate their death. They fear death and cannot cope with the thought of it. Religion is a COPING mechanism that allows humans to get through the day without the panic that they are just like any other primate on the Earth, except that they know they will DIE and their powerful sexual and violent behavior has to be tamed and controlled or they cannot function as a society.
    Humans wrote the Torah, Bible, Koran and other holy books.
    How can GOD have gender? ..always referred to as a MAN–HE, HIM, HIS, KING etc.? Why would god who created the sun, the earth, and formed man out of dust –need a human woman Mary to create a son? Why would god allow the torture of his son to forgive bad actions of people thousands of years later? Belief in this silly fantasy/fable is a delusion and total insanity!
    Where was god during–Hiroshima Bomb, the holocaust? The WTC attack? On vacation? What did god do on the seventh day of rest, take a nap, lie in bed in Heaven, read the newspaper, watch football, have sex with his goddess wife? why would an almighty powerful god need to rest?
    Why would a deity want a week old baby to suffer excruciating pain from a scalpel cutting his penis for religious circumcision?

  15. Science is Religion by Itself: God is a Scientist.
    Why?
    Because the God can create and govern the Universe
    only using physical laws, formulas, equations.
    Here is the scheme of His plan.
    =.
    God : Ten Scientific Commandments.
    1. Vacuum: T=0K, E= ∞ , p= 0, t= ∞..
    2. Particles:
    C/D=pi=3,14, R/N=k, E/M=c^2, h=0, c=0, i^2=-1, e^i(pi)= -1.
    3. Photon: h=1, c=1, h=E/t, h=kb.
    … 4. Electron: h*=h/2pi, E=h*f , e^2=ach* .
    5. Gravity, Star formation: h*f = kTlogW : He II — > He I — > H — > . . .
    6. Proton: (p).
    7. The evolution of interaction between Photon/Electron and Proton:
    a) electromagnetic,
    b) nuclear,
    c) biological.
    8. The Physical Laws:
    a) Law of Conservation and Transformation Energy / Mass,
    b) Pauli Exclusion Law,
    c) Heisenberg Uncertainty Law.
    9. Brain: Dualism of Consciousness.
    10. Practice: Parapsychology. Meditation.
    ===.
    Best wishes.
    Israel Sadovnik Socratus
    ===..
    #
    I want to know how God created this world
    I am not interested in this or that phenomenon,
    in the spectrum of this or that element
    I want to know His thoughts; the rest are details
    / Einstein /
    #
    In Physics we trust.
    / Tarun Biswas /
    #
    The secret of God and Soul is hidden in
    ” The theory of Vacuum and Quantum of Light”.
    Socratus.
    ==.

  16. Greetings Cathy Lynn,

    Did you know the modern research on www.rightfulreligion.com in the light of natural, neutral, perceptible and irrefutable proofs on one true religion?

    And, it also covers about “How Can You Know in this Life Which Religion’s Followers Will Enter in Heaven after Death?”

    I would suggest you to do your step into it and discover the truth before it’s too late for you and you leave this world.

    Regards,
    – Zeeshan

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