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Am i disgracing my scientific career by taking a course?

  1. Sep 5, 2016 #1
    Hello, I'm studying for a physics bachelor degree in college. In order to graduate in time, i have to take several general ed courses, and i've chosen religious studie 100 course because i thought i know/like ancients myths that related to greek, roman, norse gods, and etc, and because of that, i thought, course would be easy. But now i feel like i disgraced my scientific career by taking that kind of course. What if scientific folks see my diploma and make fun of me for taking religious studies in future? Sorry for the stupid question, but i have ocd and this kind of thoughts discouraging me.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 5, 2016 #2
    You mean your CV? Your physics diploma doesn't say anything about other courses you've taken.
     
  4. Sep 5, 2016 #3

    Borek

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    Religious studies as in "history of religion", or as in "theology"? One of them is a serious science, the other is not.
     
  5. Sep 5, 2016 #4

    Vanadium 50

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    Then you need to get that taken care of. Based on your posting history, it's clearly interfering with your path forward.
     
  6. Sep 5, 2016 #5

    ZapperZ

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    I'm sorry. I looked and looked, and looked. I scoured around every inch of your post, and I still can't find a problem here.

    Zz.
     
  7. Sep 5, 2016 #6
    I mean the courses that will be on my diploma, including that religious studies. Won't it appear odd?
     
  8. Sep 5, 2016 #7
    I'd say mix of two, the course includes all religions
     
  9. Sep 5, 2016 #8
    Odd to who lol? The scientific community doesn't care what your beliefs are or what religious courses you've taken. Just try to be the best at being a physicist and the rest won't matter. There are many physicists that are religious/have theological degrees and are admired and respected. Juan Maldacena comes to mind, Don Page, too.
     
  10. Sep 5, 2016 #9

    jtbell

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    I don't know what things are like in your country, but in the US it's common for undergraduates to take courses outside of their major field. When I was an undergraduate, my roommate was another physics major who also took several religion courses.

    There are even respected colleges and universities that require all students to take some religion/theology courses, e.g. the University of Notre Dame. (not just fundamentalist Christian schools like Bob Jones University or Liberty University)
     
  11. Sep 5, 2016 #10

    Choppy

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    No one is going to make fun of you for taking a course - at least, not in any way that will affect your scientific career.

    You take courses to learn more about a subject. Taking a religious studies course does not mean that you have adopted the values or beliefs of a specific religion. It does not make you anti-science. It means that you opted to learn more about those beliefs, their history, arguments used to support them, and their/or influence on society.
     
  12. Sep 5, 2016 #11

    vanhees71

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    I don't know what "ocd" is, but I don't see any problem with choosing any course at a university/college you find interesting. At least in my environment (German university, and I've also been in the US for some years), I've never heard that anyone is interested in ones personal believes or what courses you have listened to. In my university it was even in the curriculum to listen to a non-scientific lecture. I've chosen a philosophy lecture on Kant. Nobody ever asked about it ;-)).
     
  13. Sep 5, 2016 #12

    atyy

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    These people have done more religious things than take a course - they've actually claimed to be religious.

    http://scitation.aip.org/content/aip/magazine/physicstoday/article/69/7/10.1063/PT.3.3238 [Broken]
    "Physics Today readers may find the details of Lemaître’s religious training less fascinating than his uncanny knack for being in the right place at the right time for the intellectual adventure of cosmology."

    http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/physics/laureates/1979/salam-bio.html
    "Abdus Salam is known to be a devout Muslim, whose religion does not occupy a separate compartment of his life; it is inseparable from his work and family life. He once wrote: "The Holy Quran enjoins us to reflect on the verities of Allah's created laws of nature; however, that our generation has been privileged to glimpse a part of His design is a bounty and a grace for which I render thanks with a humble heart."

    http://islam-science.net/science-in...erview-with-nobel-laureate-ahmed-zewail-2706/
    "I think it is a composite of things. First of all, God created me with a passion for whatever I do. If I read a book, I have the passion to finish it. The other thing is my background, as you said. When I came to the United States, I was challenged. As I mention in my book, there were political barriers, there were cultural barriers and scientific barriers. So I was challenged to show that somebody with my background, someone who is a Muslim and grew up with mosques and everything like that can achieve something.
    Nowadays, I also try to go beyond the Nobel Prize, and I ask myself if I can help people and if I can help science in general. Perhaps also because of my upbringing and the mosque, I have faith. So I think it’s that kind of faith in life, in the universe, in myself, and in God, of course-all of this makes me who I am."

    https://www.templeton.org/belief/essays/phillips.pdf [Broken]
    "I am a physicist. I do mainstream research; I publish in peer-reviewed journals; I present my research at professional meetings; I train students and postdoctoral researchers; I try to learn from nature how nature works. In other words, I am an ordinary scientist. I am also a person of religious faith."
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2017
  14. Sep 5, 2016 #13

    russ_watters

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    Since the courses you take will not appear on your diploma...and you don't need to show anyone your diploma anyway, no, there is no problem here.

    And I agree with the others that you may want to talk to a psychologist about whatever it is that is making you so paranoid about nothing.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2016
  15. Sep 5, 2016 #14

    George Jones

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    Echoing atty, I don't see how just taking such a course can hurt you, when there are examples of openly religious scientists.

    Stephen Hawking is an atheist. Stephen Hawking took on the devoutly religious Don Page as a PhD student (they published several papers together), and Stephen Hawking collaborated with theist George Ellis on a very famous relativity book (Hawking and Ellis!). Hawking only cared about the quality of the science that Page and Ellis produced.

    Also, theoretical phyicist Chris Isham is a practising Christian, and this hasn't hurt his career,
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2016
  16. Sep 5, 2016 #15

    micromass

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    You know, going on a random forum and asking insane questions won't help your OCD at all. It makes it even worse. You need to go to a psychologist and get it checked out. There are many good medications that can help you.
     
  17. Sep 5, 2016 #16

    Mark44

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    OCD = Obsessive/compulsive disorder
     
  18. Sep 5, 2016 #17

    Student100

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    You really need to manage the OCD as everyone else is saying, seeking reassurance from others isn't a coping strategy that will work long term.

    I have what they call hit and run OCD. I don't know what caused it, but I would constantly do checks and redrive routes (which only made things worse) to make sure I hadn't indeed hit anyone. It got so bad I refused to drive without someone else in the vehicle who could reassure me that I hadn't ran anyone over.

    I know it sounds insane, and I know it is crazy, but I ignored it for a long time until it got to that point. If you keep ignoring your OCD it will negatively impact your life, because it only gets worse, not better.

    If you're just throwing out the term OCD because it's part of the common vernacular, stop doing that.

    Regardless religion and science are not incompatible.
     
  19. Sep 6, 2016 #18

    OCR

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    OCD looks to be rather complicated... IMO.

    It seems to belong to a classification of what's known as a spectrum disorder ... that is, O-C disorders can represent a range of severity.

    Obsessive–compulsive disorder ...
    Obsessive–compulsive personality disorder ...
    Obsessive–compulsive spectrum ...
    OCPD, basically runs all the way back to Sigmund Freud ...

    That's interesting... I've never heard of it, but I can understand it...
    That's the rub ... when OCD starts making a person dysfunctional.

    Personally, I think we all can develop a bit of obsessive-compulsive behavior, and some small amount might even be a benefit...
    Take for example... doing preflight, take off, and landing check lists in an aircraft ... that's pretty compulsory.[COLOR=#black]..[/COLOR] :oldwink:
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2016
  20. Sep 6, 2016 #19

    symbolipoint

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    Just this single course? Do not list it on your resume. If you enjoy the course or if it helps you learn and expand your mind, then this is good. At some point someone will review your course transcripts, and those personnel would be less interested in your one religious studies course than in your Mathematics, Physics, and computer-related courses and grades.
     
  21. Sep 6, 2016 #20

    Krylov

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    I think it is important not to confuse OCD and OCPD. The former is an anxiety disorder, the latter a personality disorder.

    Recently, I have seen quite a number of posts mentioning OCD on the forum. While I am certain that you (OCR) did not mean any harm with your post, I do think that the best response is simply to refer the (possible) OCD patient to a qualified health care professional and leave it at that.

    This is not because I do not feel for people with OCD, but (1) because I know from experience that most of these posts are indirect ways of seeking reassurance, making OCD symtoms worse (also see micromass' post above) and (2) because it is difficult (even for a professional) to provide accurate information and help online.

    If the step to a doctor is too big (which it often is, because of shame), perhaps some of the books of Lee Baer (currently at the Massachusetts General Hospital and a well-known expert on OCD) can provide first steps towards improvement.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2016
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