Skip to comments.What Science Really Says about Religion
Posted on 03/26/2013 8:53:29 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
In the March 25 issue of The Weekly Standard, the lead article entitled "The Heretic" deals with philosopher Thomas Nagel, who has abandoned his long-held perspective on philosophy and religion. This has caused consternation and alarm among contemporary philosophy professors, the great majority of whom are strongly committed to an atheistic world-view. A recurring assertion by members of that profession is that they are being very scientific, because science disproves religion.
The question arises, "Where did the idea come from that science disproves religion?" It didn't come from within science; rather, it's the province of non-scientists making statements about science. To understand its origins, the foremost thing to note is that academic philosophers are by and large a group with limited understanding of science -- having passed their science requirement in college, most haven't gone deeper to investigate real science and discover the limits of science. Their familiar claim that science supports atheism result from their misunderstanding of science. Here is my scientific perspective about what happened over the past century:
As the 19th century was coming to a close, classical physics was in very good shape (Newtonian mechanics plus Maxwell's equations for electromagnetism). There was a strong belief in determinism, the notion that absolutely everything behaved over time according to the exact laws of physics. Quantum Mechanics and the uncertainty principle were still decades in the future.
Accompanying that belief in determinism in nature, the philosophers wanted their system of thought to be deterministic too, with every valid philosophical statement following logically from a previous one, all the way back to some "mathematical proof" at the basic level. Bertrand Russell advocated that way of thinking.
In the first quarter of the 20th century, the system of "logical positivism" gained dominance among philosophical schools.
(Excerpt) Read more at americanthinker.com ...
Interesting. I see the adherence to the global warming dogma as a religious belief and not at all a scientific understanding.
Science doesn’t have much to say about religion. It can describe the mechanism behind how stars are created, but not the identity of the creator of that mechanism.
They just noticed? Nagel has taken this position for a long time. Very much worth reading.
If you only have time for one, I’d suggest “The Last Word.”
This is to be expected given that science is limited to the empirical while reality isn't.
The center piece of Christianity is the life, death and resurrection Jesus. Science has no more to say on the on the events of the life of Jesus than any other historical figure. IOW, science can't confirm George Washington lived. Nor Plato or any other figure.
The true treat thinkers (e.g., physicists, not mere philosophers) were not exactly against religion.
One very good book on this is “Quantum Questions” edited by Ken Wilber. Check out some of the philosophical writing of some of the greats of quantum physics who appear to have much more ability to think in terms of philosophy (and even religion) than philosophers appear to have in terms of modern physics.
Oops, that’s “true great thinkers,” not “true treat thinkers.”
Sorry, my fingers had an Obamadork moment.
The thing that really disturbs me about the global warming true believers is that, beyond the science, they believe that humanity is harmful and has no right to be here.
I also can recommend a book entitled, “Does God Believe in Atheists?”. It does a great job of setting the stage going back to ancient times and how philosophical paradigms strongly influence what we would ordinarily consider “objective” research and analysis.
I don’t know about that. There have been some interesting scientific studies of the Shroud of Turin that strongly indicate that a supernatural event caused the image of Christ on the Shroud. These studies are explained in detail in the History Channel’s documentary “The Real Face of Jesus.”
I have been watching a british tv series on Netflix called “Primeval.” It is about time anomalies opening up and creatures from the past and future coming through them into modern times. Its a cool show and devoid of the usual PC and smut garbage pervading most tv shows.
In one of the episodes a woman who believes that humans are evil goes back in time to try and kill the first humans so as to prevent mankind from ever spreading across the globe.
Of course not, but maybe some skeptics might see that evidence and cause them to re-think their skepticism. The bodily resurrection of Christ as a historical fact is also supported by the 500 witnesses who saw the resurrected Christ after his death, and of course, by the fact that the Apostles were willing to be martyred in the most painful and gruesome ways. They would not have done that for a hallucination.
Christianity is a religion based on historical facts that can be investigated. This is the foundation of all Christian apologetics.
The great thing about the show is that she is the villain. Cool!
If science could provide convincing evidence for God then faith wouldn’t be needed. Faith is the evidence of things unseen and without faith it is impossible to please God. God wants us to have faith and to seek him. He doesn’t say HERE I AM, NO NEED TO SEEK.
Science is a tool, a mechanism. Saying science is godless makes about as much sense as saying a hammer or computer program is godless.
Read Hebrews ch 11.
I'm very astonished that the scientific picture of the real world is very deficient. It gives a lot of factual information, puts all our experience in a magnificently consistent order, but it is ghastly silent about all and sundry that is really near to our heart, that really matters to us. It cannot tell us a word about red and blue, bitter and sweet, physical pain and physical delight, knows nothing of beautiful and ugly, good or bad, God and eternity. Science sometimes pretends to answer questions in these domains, but the answers are very often so silly that we are not inclined to take them seriously.
I shall reexamine the suppositions underlying our belief in science and propose to show that they are more extensive than is usually thought. They will appear to coextend with the entire spiritual foundations of man and to go to the very root of his social existence. Hence I will urge our belief in science should be regarded as a token of much wider convictions.
Let no one think or maintain that a person can search too far or be too well studied in either the book of God's word or the book of God's works.
I believe only and alone in the service of Jesus Christ. In him is all refuge and solace.
God makes people conscious of their inward wretchedness, which the Bible calls "sin" and his infinite mercy. Unites himself to their inmost soul, fills it with humility and joy, with confidence and love, renders them incapable of any other end than Himself. Jesus Christ is the end of all and the center to which all tends.
At the center of every human being is a Godshaped vacuum which can only be filled by Jesus Christ.
This most beautiful system of the sun, planets and comets could only proceed from the counsel and dominion of an intelligent and powerful Being .
There are more sure marks of authenticity in the Bible than in any profane history. It must be expressed in the very form of sound words in which it was delivered by the apostles. For men are apt to run into partings about deductions. All the old heresies lie in deductions .
The true faith was in the Biblical texts.
Boyle, Newton and the early members of the Royal Society were religious men who repudiated the skeptical doctrines of Thomas Hobbs. But they familiarized the minds of their countrymen with the idea of law in the universe and with scientific methods of inquiry to discover truth. It was believed that these methods would never lead to any conclusions inconsistent with Biblical history and miraculous religion. Newton lived and died in that faith.
Speculations, man, I have none. I have certainties. I thank God that I don't rest my dying head upon speculations for "I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I've committed unto him against that day."
Think what God has determined to do to all those who submit themselves to his righteousness and are willing to receive his gift [of eternal life in Jesus Christ]. They are to be conformed to the image of his Son and when that is fulfilled and God sees they are conformed to the image of Christ, there can be no more condemnation.
James Clerk Maxwell
Do not be afraid to be free thinkers. If you think strongly enough, you will be forced by science to the belief in God.
William Thomson (later known as Lord Kelvin)
You will understand that my atheism was inevitably based on what I believed to be the findings of the sciences and those findings, not being a scientist, I had to take on trust, in fact, on authority.
C. S. Lewis
In the distance tower still higher [scientific] peaks which will yield to those who ascend them still wider prospects and deepen the feeling whose truth is emphasized by every advance in science, that great are the works of the Lord.
J. J. Thomson
There were some ten of us and together we sought for God and together we found Him. I learned for the first time in my life that God was my friend. God became real to me, utterly real. I knew Him and could talk with Him as I never imagined it before and these prayers were the most glorious moment of the day. Life had a purpose and that purpose coloured everything.
If we need an atheist for a debate, I'd go to the philosophy departmentthe physics department isn't much use.
Some nonscientist Christians, when they meet a Christian, will call on to debate evolution. That is definitely the wrong thing to do. If you know what problems scientists have in their livespride, selfish ambition, jealousythat's exactly the kind of thing Jesus Christ said that He came to resolve by His death on the cross. Science is full of people with very strong egos who get into conflict with each other. The gospel is the same for scientists as it is for anyone. Evolution is basically a red herring; if scientists are looking for meaning in their lives, it won't be found in evolution. I have never met a nonChristian who brought up evolution with me.
You may well ask, "Where does God come into this," to me, that's almost a pointless question. If you believe in God at all, there is no particular "where"He is always there, everywhere .To me, God is personal yet omnipresent. A great source of strength, He has made an enormous difference to me.
Charles H. Townes
We are fortunate to have the Bible, and especially the New Testament, which tells so much about God in widely accessible, human terms.
The world is too complicated in all its parts and interconnections to be due to chance I am convinced that the existence of life with all its order and each of its organisms is simply too well put together.
God has given us an incredibly fascinating world to live in and explore.
The present arrangement of matter indicates a very special choice of initial conditions.
A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as with chemistry and biology, and that there are no blind forces worth speaking about in nature.
Since the creation of the world, God's invisible qualitiesHis eternal power and divine naturehave been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made.
The nature of God is not to be found within any part of the findings of science. For that, one must turn to the Scriptures.
There is a tremendous tradition of distinguished scientists who were and are Christians. I hope that my work is considered sufficiently outstanding to fall into the distinguished among that category. I also hope I have given you enough evidence that you will never again believe that it is impossible to be a scientist and a Christian.
Dr. Henry F. Schaefer, III
I think I need to do some godless mathematics on my godless calculator to perform some godless experiments, then type up the godless data on my godless computer. ;)
Dr. Schroeder is a physicist and a devout Jew. Rather than use science to "prove" the bible, he instead draws parallels between a variety of biblical teachings and the findings of biochemists, paleontologists, astrophysicists, and quantum physicists.
Heb 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen
Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
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Gerald Schroeder bump.
Science and the Old Testament work very well together for me.
a good way to conclude.
a dignified reply