Is Science a religion?

  • Thread starter Parnpuu
  • Start date

Is science a religion?

  • Yes, it is

    Votes: 2 7.1%
  • No, it is not

    Votes: 26 92.9%
  • Errmm... No comment

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    28

mjsd

Homework Helper
725
3
This in my opinion raises the question of how we define "religion". ...... Alot of religions emphasize understanding the world at a deeper level and give a more personal approach to it. They lack the clear hirearchical structure of the Abrahamic religions and many of them do not give any ethical codes to live to (and all those things.)
Since you have realised that "religion" may not be as black and white as you may hope it can be defined, it means that your original yes/no question on whether Science is a religion is kind of meaningless. you need a better definition of what you meant by "religion" first (as someone else has already mentioned).

I would start from the very basics and then move on if we can:

BOTH, in my opinion, require the same belief as a starting point- Belief that what they are doing is right. .......
One important point to remember is that this "starting point" is usually regarded as fixed for "religion" (normal usage of the term), while the so-called starting point for "Science" can be evolving based on our interactions with the world. And so there is a difference. (but of course, it still depends on how you define "religion")

For a better discussion see (links):
Taking Science on faith, by Paul Davies
and the subsequent discussion by leading scientists
(I personally quite like Lee Smolin's response) The Reality Club
 

jambaugh

Science Advisor
Insights Author
Gold Member
2,175
231
Again,as I said in my previous post, I think we should acknowledge the difference between religions as well. There are a lot of religions that are based on the same fundamental principle as science is: To find out how the world works.
That is not the fundamental principle of science. It is the motivation. The fundamental principle of science is that this quest is defined only within a context of empirical epistemology. This makes it totally distinct from religions. Epistemology shapes the very foundation of the subject including what we mean by "the world" and what we mean by "how it works".

These religions are more based on self-finding and hightened sensing and so on (not really aan expert so can't go into specifics).
i.e. the epistemology of "wishing makes it so" and "nothing you can tell me will make me stop believing"...
True they make some assumptions (as does science) and they have a more "personal" approach (meaning they are not meant to be provable to everyone, just yourself). This more modern approach that it does not really matter how you approach the subject of learning more about the universe is very far from the abrahamic religions that we all know. The difference is that it has a spiritual approach.
More modern? Its been around as long as man has appreciated his own mortality and began double think to deny the empirical evidence of his eyes. All this reversion to "personal" religion has done is allow the individual to escape the one redeeming quality of the traditional religious dogmas, namely the imposition of personal discipline and responsibility.
The individual can pick and choose what dogma he will believe...when that interferes with his desires he can disallow it.

Don't get me wrong, knowledge and belief have always been personal individual acts. But if you are going to start with the dogma of a scripture then you should take it whole or reject its claims of special insight. Look upon it as any literature, providing insight in to the world the author sees and a common source of cultural iconic parables. If you're going to advocate personalized quest for knowledge have the person go all the way back to the true foundation and rethink the epistemological basis of his definition of "knowledge".

Could we agree then that these religions and science lie on the same principles even if they are somewhat contradictory. (Although in my opinion they needn't be) or is there some fault in my logic?
No because the framework of "how we know" is totally different and thus the meaning of "knowledge" and "truth" are incomparable. The only religious founder I've ever read who is an exception to this rule is the original Buddha... he called on the listener to confirm via experience what he was saying rather than take it on faith. (This with regard to conditioned existence and not the world view of reincarnation, et al which was inherited from the pre-Buddhism religions of India).

BTW: I would like to bring to your notice that the quote from Galilei that you have, does not necessarily exclude the spiritual approach to the matter?!?!?
My quote is Galilei's argument that science is distinct from gnostic insight, and that he chose his religious beliefs to be compatible with science. But note the distinction he makes and understand his times where failure to conform to the religion of the day was punishable with imprisonment, and possibly death. Recall that Galileo was forced to recant his empirical observations because they were incompatible with the "faith" of the times. Then recall his stage whisper of "yet still they move!". He did not defy the church out of gnostic insight or faith, he defied them because he saw with his own eyes and he knew that if only others would just look they too would see with their own eyes. He was not a prophet he was a scientist and these are very very distinct things.

Let me say that I have great respect for many peoples faith. It is their reason I question when they try to equate their faith with science. Science can never address reality beyond the observable. By restricting itself to that domain it can say more with more certainty within that domain.

Religions can claim anything about anything and by the lack of discipline (within the general class of religious belief) they end up saying everything about everything. So pick your belief... pick your religion... what does it matter...what does it mean? In the end the prophet says "believe me" and the scientist says "here is the evidence. Believe it or not as you choose".

Science is about not taking things on faith, not believing because it is the dogma of the day, but believing even when that belief defies intuition and faith and desire because that is what the evidence gleaned by rigorous observations say the truth must be. You can't get that from meditation or inspiration or prayer.

Finally let me say that science is one thing and scientists are another. Theorists may theorize and many claims will be presented very far from the screen of empirical tests. But the academic peer review process is design to, albeit sometimes quite slowly, filter out the theology from the science.
 
24
0
That is not the fundamental principle of science. It is the motivation. The fundamental principle of science is that this quest is defined only within a context of empirical epistemology. This makes it totally distinct from religions. Epistemology shapes the very foundation of the subject including what we mean by "the world" and what we mean by "how it works".


i.e. the epistemology of "wishing makes it so" and "nothing you can tell me will make me stop believing"...

More modern? Its been around as long as man has appreciated his own mortality and began double think to deny the empirical evidence of his eyes. All this reversion to "personal" religion has done is allow the individual to escape the one redeeming quality of the traditional religious dogmas, namely the imposition of personal discipline and responsibility.
The individual can pick and choose what dogma he will believe...when that interferes with his desires he can disallow it.

Don't get me wrong, knowledge and belief have always been personal individual acts. But if you are going to start with the dogma of a scripture then you should take it whole or reject its claims of special insight. Look upon it as any literature, providing insight in to the world the author sees and a common source of cultural iconic parables. If you're going to advocate personalized quest for knowledge have the person go all the way back to the true foundation and rethink the epistemological basis of his definition of "knowledge".


No because the framework of "how we know" is totally different and thus the meaning of "knowledge" and "truth" are incomparable. The only religious founder I've ever read who is an exception to this rule is the original Buddha... he called on the listener to confirm via experience what he was saying rather than take it on faith. (This with regard to conditioned existence and not the world view of reincarnation, et al which was inherited from the pre-Buddhism religions of India).


My quote is Galilei's argument that science is distinct from gnostic insight, and that he chose his religious beliefs to be compatible with science. But note the distinction he makes and understand his times where failure to conform to the religion of the day was punishable with imprisonment, and possibly death. Recall that Galileo was forced to recant his empirical observations because they were incompatible with the "faith" of the times. Then recall his stage whisper of "yet still they move!". He did not defy the church out of gnostic insight or faith, he defied them because he saw with his own eyes and he knew that if only others would just look they too would see with their own eyes. He was not a prophet he was a scientist and these are very very distinct things.

Let me say that I have great respect for many peoples faith. It is their reason I question when they try to equate their faith with science. Science can never address reality beyond the observable. By restricting itself to that domain it can say more with more certainty within that domain.

Religions can claim anything about anything and by the lack of discipline (within the general class of religious belief) they end up saying everything about everything. So pick your belief... pick your religion... what does it matter...what does it mean? In the end the prophet says "believe me" and the scientist says "here is the evidence. Believe it or not as you choose".

Science is about not taking things on faith, not believing because it is the dogma of the day, but believing even when that belief defies intuition and faith and desire because that is what the evidence gleaned by rigorous observations say the truth must be. You can't get that from meditation or inspiration or prayer.

Finally let me say that science is one thing and scientists are another. Theorists may theorize and many claims will be presented very far from the screen of empirical tests. But the academic peer review process is design to, albeit sometimes quite slowly, filter out the theology from the science.

Excellent argumentation !
 

russ_watters

Mentor
18,992
5,146
I wouldn't be so quick to mock religion. I used to do the same for all the bull I went through for religion. But the truth is, your truth is only a truth beneficial for your survival, just as we may argue religion is. People seem to seek it because it makes them feel good and survive certain trials better....

Why do we even argue over who's right or not? Is it to benefit us or even the individual on a local scale? It's not to attain truth for the sake of truth if we gain nothing from it, is it? The ego loves being right.
I don't see how any of your post is relevant to mine. None of it addresses the question in the OP. The reasons why people seek religion vs science aren't really relevant to whether religion is a science. Further, most religious people that I've come across don't try to co-opt science in the manner implied by the OP, so it isn't really relevant to discuss them or their reasons for being religious. This thread (and my post) isn't about them.
 
24
0
I would try to take the subject forward now.

A quote for you to ponder on:

The universe is infinite and thus you can not know everything, so you are bound to take some things on faith (fill in the gaps with faith)

Any comments on this?

Also starting from that perspective, I'd say a similar process to the adaptive nature of science, also takes place in religion. In the light of new discoveries the theory is changed into a better one. The difference is that in religion most of these changes are based on social changes, not physical. First thing to come to my mind would be the great reformation by Luther, also Calvinism and Protestantism.

Your opinions on this?
 

jambaugh

Science Advisor
Insights Author
Gold Member
2,175
231
I would try to take the subject forward now.

A quote for you to ponder on:

The universe is infinite and thus you can not know everything, so you are bound to take some things on faith (fill in the gaps with faith)

Any comments on this?
Firstly on what basis do you hold the assertion that the universe is infinite? Is this a matter of faith or can you back the claim up with empirical evidence.

Secondly knowing whether it is raining on the third planet of Alpha Proxima is not "a gap which can be filled in by faith". So your reasoning is faulty. The existence of ignorance does not imply we must adopt arbitrary beliefs in order to pretend that ignorance doesn't exist. For example I don't need faith to "complete" knowledge about systems to which Godel's incompleteness proof applies. I simply acknowledge ignorance...a far more powerful position then pretended knowledge.

Also starting from that perspective, I'd say a similar process to the adaptive nature of science, also takes place in religion. In the light of new discoveries the theory is changed into a better one. The difference is that in religion most of these changes are based on social changes, not physical. First thing to come to my mind would be the great reformation by Luther, also Calvinism and Protestantism.

Your opinions on this?
Right, given enough religions those which adopt dogmas which help them prosper will endure. So Jews got less tricinosis by believing that pork was unclean. But by applying science we can have our pork and eat it too...i.e. increase our available food supply and avoid tricinosis and other pork born diseases by careful processing. Science adapts consciously...religions "adapt" by the strong killing off the weak or via mutation.

But my tricinosis analogy is bad because that was an empirically derived bit of knowledge. People saw a correlation between diet and illness. However once this scientifically derived knowledge was incorporated into the religion of the time all exploration for true cause (rather than God's inexplicable will) ceased.

While you bring up Luther's reformation recall also the persecution and destruction of alternative Christian creeds e.g. the Gnostics. There is good argument that Roman Catholicism prevailed, not because it was more true but rather because it was the better tyrant, incorporating the church into government and thus making available the full force of law in imposing its dogma while at the same time enforcing law by the threat of mystical violence via excommunication and eternal damnation.

Your analogy is like comparing the development of the the polio vaccine by Salk with the development of alkaloid poisons by plant species. The plants do not "know" they are merely the ones who survived by the accident of the chemicals they produce helping them prosper and dominate. Likewise having an advanced liver isn't knowing though it helps one eat plants with certain alkaloid poisons. Contrast this with learning to denature the poisons by cooking your food.
 
25
0
Is science a religion?
From what I've seen, intelligent design proponents would like us to think that it is, that there is no distinction between the verifiable (science) and the unverifiable (religion).
 
2,400
6
BOTH, in my opinion, require the same belief as a starting point- Belief that what they are doing is right.
[...]

I know that this can be a bit confusing but would anyone agree to this or present another approach?
Sure that's agreeable. While engaging in science, you must have faith that there is not just simple pure random chaos going on out there. But that's a minor irrelevant detail compared to the profound distinction that follows : in science you test your hypothesis, and you discard them if they prove wrong. In religion, questioning the principles leads you to Hell. How can this enormous opposition of attitude still qualify science as a religion just baffles me.
 
24
0
Ok, I'm going to try to sum up everything that's said here and see if we have a final answer:

Although science and religion are both based on the same faith that what they are doing is right, science adapts a position of an observer, allowing oneself the possibility of fault and evolves through trial and error, trying to find out more about the universe while religion is ultimately placed on certain claims, from which at least a few can not be observed in our physis (Lets leave the discussion of physis and metaphysis for another thread) and thus need to be taken on someones word, religion trying to give a theory on things that we (at least presently) can not observe in our universe.

Everyone okay with this or should I change something?
 
24
0
Sure that's agreeable. While engaging in science, you must have faith that there is not just simple pure random chaos going on out there. But that's a minor irrelevant detail compared to the profound distinction that follows : in science you test your hypothesis, and you discard them if they prove wrong. In religion, questioning the principles leads you to Hell. How can this enormous opposition of attitude still qualify science as a religion just baffles me.
Not all religions say you go to hell. many don't even have the so-called darker side and are purely based on hightening your position in the universe (or whatever, don't really know that specifically).
 
25
0
Ok, I'm going to try to sum up everything that's said here and see if we have a final answer:

Although science and religion are both based on the same faith that what they are doing is right, science adapts a position of an observer, allowing oneself the possibility of fault and evolves through trial and error, trying to find out more about the universe while religion is ultimately placed on certain claims, from which at least a few can not be observed in our physis (Lets leave the discussion of physis and metaphysis for another thread) and thus need to be taken on someones word, religion trying to give a theory on things that we (at least presently) can not observe in our universe.

Everyone okay with this or should I change something?

This statement is unclear to me. Are you saying that most religious claims are observable by science?
 
24
0
This statement is unclear to me. Are you saying that most religious claims are observable by science?

What I meant by this, is that actually alot of religion is closely intertwined with science, especially nowadays. So some of the statements they make are true because they are based on scientific findings but every religion would have at least one statement that can not be verified by observation and that is what separates religio0n from science. Hope I made myself clear.


EDIT: Actually writing thi lead me to a very interesting thought. If this were true then could it also be the other way around? Could a religion become a scientific claim? Don't really have alot of background on this, someone who knows more could talk about this matter?
 
31
0
I don't see how any of your post is relevant to mine. None of it addresses the question in the OP. The reasons why people seek religion vs science aren't really relevant to whether religion is a science. Further, most religious people that I've come across don't try to co-opt science in the manner implied by the OP, so it isn't really relevant to discuss them or their reasons for being religious. This thread (and my post) isn't about them.
I think it's relevent because some people tend to bash things which they don't agree with and they try to distinguish themselves from the thing they're bashing. I'm just trying to help people see that what they try to push away from has more in common with them than they want to admit sometimes. Understanding subdues anger. You see how Science is a slave to human emotion just as religion is? We want to learn because, as Richard Feynman reminds me, we have this confusion and it causes us anger. So to get rid of the anger, we learn and understand so we're not in a state of confusion anymore. We don't seek the whole truth, only truths which are relevant to our emotions.

I also defend religions' fuzzy choices. If we went on logic for everything we did, we'd be in a total state of confusion because we just don't know it all. We all go on our gut feelings, religious people aren't the only ones. The questions never end. Just when you think you know it all, you question the questions. I couldn't totally give myself to religion and now after lots of thinking about it, I can't totally give myself to logic. What they have in common is making a fuzzy choice and going with it.

I don't know what's wrong with me but for every retort defending science, I ask why, then why to that, and it never ends. The fact is, we don't know it all so we can't be 100% assured we are correct in anything more than anyone else. As far as the typical religious view goes, they just have a view of reality that isn't as compatible to my experiences and conditions as theirs. I don't really see a wrong or right. If I was on a religion board, I'd find myself arguing towards science, grounded and rooted observation. But here on this board, whether I really want to or not, I find myself defending religion more. Religious people sometimes say we don't know it all and sometimes we just have to go on our deep rooted and yet to be understood instinct which has guided man to rise in the evolutionary chain from simple animal to intelligent animal.

I just see 'not knowing it all' arguing with 'not knowing it all, in the religion/science debate. Reminds me of kids arguing. It doesn't matter because in the end, what triumphs is what point comes through stronger whether it was right by our standards or not. By which view was more beneficial to the survival of that species. They say religion makes people happier so it still stands on firm ground with the masses and explains its survival throughout history. I just think when you think about these things more, you really don't know where you stand unless. Religious people are going to side with religious, scientific people with scientific people, etc. If you grew up in a scientifically rooted family, you'll likely have their views.

We're all baised somewhat. If you had a good friend and people said that he was ugly, you would try to discount their view. It doesn't matter if their view is valid or not, you discount it by denial or the 'don't like, must bash' tactic that's been so prevalent in barbaric history. You are biased to your friend because he is beneficial to your survival. We all endorse things which are beneficial to our survival more than not. We could take the opposite view but we would live long and so those views wouldn't populate as well. If you've read Dawkins' The Selfish Gene you get the point.

Are we promoting Science because it is beneficial for our survival or are we promoting it because it's the universal truth, free of the taint of human emotion? As you can obviously see, it is no better than religion. It's just two immature sides arguing no better than looking under a microscope and seeing two microbes battling it out other than just to see which organism will preside due to the properties it maintains.
 
31
0
Ok, I'm going to try to sum up everything that's said here and see if we have a final answer:

Although science and religion are both based on the same faith that what they are doing is right, science adapts a position of an observer, allowing oneself the possibility of fault and evolves through trial and error, trying to find out more about the universe while religion is ultimately placed on certain claims, from which at least a few can not be observed in our physis (Lets leave the discussion of physis and metaphysis for another thread) and thus need to be taken on someones word, religion trying to give a theory on things that we (at least presently) can not observe in our universe.

Everyone okay with this or should I change something?
I'd agree in this day and time Science is more beneficial to the species as long as it's not taken too far. You take both too far and you'll wind up falling flat on your face.

One takes in what is observable for the benefit of the observer and the other takes in what is observable for the benefit of the observer. One says something is there because the masses suggest it to you and the other suggests something is there because the masses suggest it to you. Both say if you do not agree, you are usually wrong. So many speak the side for distinguishing the two but I speak the side of rolling the two up in the same ball of confusion both can reside in. Still, is my view correct? I know it's not the one that's going to be beneficial for any friendship in a forum such as this but is it still not the truth?

And before you go on about "masses", in Science, the more senses which we observe something from, the stronger our feeling that it exists. If we see it, does it mean it exists? A light from billions of miles away tells a tale of a planet. Does it mean it exists? Sure, to our eyes it does but in real time, does it? So if we could go back and feel it with our sense of touch, it would help give credence to our sense of sight. More senses observe it to help us sense its existence. More mass observance seems to qualify existence.

Sure, most religious people think there's something bigger than us, I'd agree also. But I don't necessarily agree with their reality. I'd go so far as to say the universe is bigger than us, if not just in size, but number of axial connections which one could argue means intelligence. But I'd say their reality is a little fuzzier because it's not as check-summed against tested observation. But no one knows it all. So how fuzzy of a view is the correct one?
 
Last edited:
24
0
I'd agree in this day and time Science is more beneficial to the species as long as it's not taken too far. You take both too far and you'll wind up falling flat on your face.

One takes in what is observable for the benefit of the observer and the other takes in what is observable for the benefit of the observer. One says something is there because the masses suggest it to you and the other suggests something is there because the masses suggest it to you. Both say if you do not agree, you are usually wrong. So many speak the side for distinguishing the two but I speak the side of rolling the two up in the same ball of confusion both can reside in. Still, is my view correct? I know it's not the one that's going to be beneficial for any friendship in a forum such as this but is it still not the truth?

And before you go on about "masses", in Science, the more senses which we observe something from, the stronger our feeling that it exists. If we see it, does it mean it exists? A light from billions of miles away tells a tale of a planet. Does it mean it exists? Sure, to our eyes it does but in real time, does it? So if we could go back and feel it with our sense of touch, it would help give credence to our sense of sight. More senses observe it to help us sense its existence. More mass observance seems to qualify existence.

Sure, most religious people think there's something bigger than us, I'd agree also. But I don't necessarily agree with their reality. I'd go so far as to say the universe is bigger than us, if not just in size, but number of axial connections which one could argue means intelligence. But I'd say their reality is a little fuzzier because it's not as check-summed against tested observation. But no one knows it all. So how fuzzy of a view is the correct one?
I would somewhat agree with you, although I do not believe that we should consider this a state of confusion. Humans strive for understanding because they want to feel free and independent from the world tha influences them and I totally support this quest, even if it can not be totally achieved. If we did not have the "sense for the greater" as you may call it, we wouldn't really have any scientific advances either bevause human imagination is what has given us some of the greatest ideas.
 
2,400
6
Not all religions say you go to hell. many don't even have the so-called darker side and are purely based on hightening your position in the universe (or whatever, don't really know that specifically).
Yes of course. But no religion at all allows you to test its hypothesis in a scientific manner, and refute the religion if the religion comes in disagreement with hard facts or is based on non-disprovable hypothesis. Therefore, I don't see how your comment is relevant to my question, which was (reformulated) : how can slight, anecdotical and minor analogies between science and religion, when compared with the scientific method of rejecting either wrong or non-refutable hypothesis, justify science to be classified as a religion ? Your comment, and this entire discussion, is nitpicking. If a religion were falsifiable, it would not qualify as a religion anymore. If a scientific theory were not falsifiable, it would not qualify as a scientific theory anymore.
 
24
0
Yes of course. But no religion at all allows you to test its hypothesis in a scientific manner, and refute the religion if the religion comes in disagreement with hard facts or is based on non-disprovable hypothesis. Therefore, I don't see how your comment is relevant to my question, which was (reformulated) : how can slight, anecdotical and minor analogies between science and religion, when compared with the scientific method of rejecting either wrong or non-refutable hypothesis, justify science to be classified as a religion ? Your comment, and this entire discussion, is nitpicking. If a religion were falsifiable, it would not qualify as a religion anymore. If a scientific theory were not falsifiable, it would not qualify as a scientific theory anymore.
Ofcourse,ofcourse, no need to get angry. I'm just pointing out that when making a statement you should try to stay as detailed and understandable as possible.


What I am trying to establish is that how do you know that the scientific method is correct? (look at my previous posts, also the first one"How do I know that I know) I know this is not really a discussion whether science is a religion but it is more of a phiolosphical nature now.
 
2,400
6
What I am trying to establish is that how do you know that the scientific method is correct?
I think you can not. That's what we live with. How do you prove that the firemen methods are correct ? You become a fireman yourself and you show them how more efficient your method is. You may even skip all the traditional fireman ritual, and just pop in when a building is in fire, and demonstrate how you can, in a few seconds, just by yourself, be more efficient than all of them in a few minutes.

Otherwise, there is no rigorous mathematical proof that the scientific method is correct in principle. That scientists decide to use the scientific method without proof that it is the best one is usually not called a "religious" choice, but an "ethical" choice. So, science as opposed to religion is an ethical choice (if they were to be placed in opposition).
 
31
0
Humans strive for understanding because they want to feel free and independent from the world tha influences them and I totally support this quest, even if it can not be totally achieved.
So we learn about the world so we can be free and independent of it? When we come across borders, we seek a way around them to help us be free but I don't know about you, I expect there to be more borders, things which we don't know, when we find a way around another one. There is no freedom in learning, to me, but some peace, then more borders or gates for which we'll want to cross when the sense of freedom subsides from overcoming the last obstacle.

I would argue as I stated before and as Feynman has stated in an interview I saw, that not knowing puts us in a negative state, a state of confusion, and so we learn to understand which brings us some temporary peace when it is resolved. Learning about the world, imho, is not a good way to be independent of it, in any way. We really just involve ourselves more in it.
 
24
0
I think you can not. That's what we live with. How do you prove that the firemen methods are correct ? You become a fireman yourself and you show them how more efficient your method is. You may even skip all the traditional fireman ritual, and just pop in when a building is in fire, and demonstrate how you can, in a few seconds, just by yourself, be more efficient than all of them in a few minutes.

Otherwise, there is no rigorous mathematical proof that the scientific method is correct in principle. That scientists decide to use the scientific method without proof that it is the best one is usually not called a "religious" choice, but an "ethical" choice. So, science as opposed to religion is an ethical choice (if they were to be placed in opposition).
I'd say that choosing a religion is also a choice of ethics actually.
 
25
0
What I meant by this, is that actually alot of religion is closely intertwined with science, especially nowadays. So some of the statements they make are true because they are based on scientific findings but every religion would have at least one statement that can not be verified by observation and that is what separates religio0n from science. Hope I made myself clear.


EDIT: Actually writing thi lead me to a very interesting thought. If this were true then could it also be the other way around? Could a religion become a scientific claim? Don't really have alot of background on this, someone who knows more could talk about this matter?

Parnpuu, I really don't know what you mean by this. I have not seen this "intertwining" that you are talking about anywhere in the literature or the news. On the contrary, it seems that organized religions are reluctant to accept and embrace the findings of science. But, perhaps if you gave a few examples, it would help clarify.

Could a religion become a scientific claim?
Wouldn't the burden of proof of the religion making its claims of the unnatural fall on the religion to make and not on science?
 
24
0
Parnpuu, I really don't know what you mean by this. I have not seen this "intertwining" that you are talking about anywhere in the literature or the news. On the contrary, it seems that organized religions are reluctant to accept and embrace the findings of science. But, perhaps if you gave a few examples, it would help clarify.

Wouldn't the burden of proof of the religion making its claims of the unnatural fall on the religion to make and not on science?
Sorry I was so confusing. You forget to think about how you write if you know it yourself. I was talking about how, especially in the last century, many religions have gained a start from scientific discoveries. I know at least two that came to existance, based on Einsteins famous formula E=mc2.

As for your second point, I meant have some past claims that have been purely asserted to religion, become provable by science in the future? I really don't know so thats why I ask.
 
24
0
So we learn about the world so we can be free and independent of it? When we come across borders, we seek a way around them to help us be free but I don't know about you, I expect there to be more borders, things which we don't know, when we find a way around another one. There is no freedom in learning, to me, but some peace, then more borders or gates for which we'll want to cross when the sense of freedom subsides from overcoming the last obstacle.

I would argue as I stated before and as Feynman has stated in an interview I saw, that not knowing puts us in a negative state, a state of confusion, and so we learn to understand which brings us some temporary peace when it is resolved. Learning about the world, imho, is not a good way to be independent of it, in any way. We really just involve ourselves more in it.
Yes, to be more precise, I mean the ILLUSION that we project to ourselves that knowing more about the world makes us more free of its effects. It's very hard to get rid of this self-desception:)


Anyway if everyone is happy with my definition then I would close this thread if thats all right.
 
Last edited:
31
0
Yes, to be more precise, I mean the ILLUSION that we project to ourselves that knowing more about the world makes us more free of its effects. It's very hard to get rid of this self-desception:)
I guess I get what you're saying. The more knowledge, the more power, the more power, the more freedom others seem to allow us, in some ways. I guess that's just an opinion. Certainly, for me, knowing more about the world isn't any more freeing.

I can't really say I support it or not. If I only support that which is beneficial to us, there's whole other dimensions for which we won't see. Could we even say we support the truth if we only support the truth which is beneficial to us? Or you could argue, there's dimensions that we won't be able to see only because we were evolved to only see (in this case, observe) those which are only beneficial for our survival. In that case, if survival is the only factor which counts, then whether science views it as true or not, it doesn't matter, as long as it helps the species survive. Religion may be cruel and it may be cruel and unusual punishment for some to us to listen to some religious people spout their beliefs but life can be cruel like that. It's how that meme survives, by sometimes intruding.

Barbarians attack a village by raping and plundering. By elegantly manipulating the people verbally with politics, religion, or science, it can get done. By forcefully manipulating them in a way I previously stated, it can get done. It doesn't seem to matter in the universe how it gets done or how a species, idea, or meme (though I hate using that word because it's so over-used and corrupted) spreads, as long as it's successful. It doesn't matter. Most of us may arguably be the result of rape. We came to existence, spread and wouldn't speak negatively of our ancestors who did what we may say is wrong because it would not be beneficial to us although it won't stop us, it wouldn't be a very popular statement.

Brute manipulation or gentle manipulation, we're all just objects manipulating objects arguing about which way of manipulation is better for the survival of the species or the self.
 
Last edited:

Math Is Hard

Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
4,491
28
Yes, to be more precise, I mean the ILLUSION that we project to ourselves that knowing more about the world makes us more free of its effects. It's very hard to get rid of this self-desception:)


Anyway if everyone is happy with my definition then I would close this thread if thats all right.
I will grant your request. :smile:

By the way, we've had this discussion here before:
https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=71042
 

Related Threads for: Is Science a religion?

Replies
53
Views
49K
  • Last Post
2
Replies
27
Views
4K
  • Last Post
2
Replies
47
Views
8K
  • Last Post
Replies
9
Views
6K
  • Last Post
Replies
13
Views
2K
  • Last Post
Replies
2
Views
1K
  • Last Post
4
Replies
97
Views
7K
  • Last Post
Replies
4
Views
5K

Hot Threads

Top