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Thread: Science and Religion

  1. #1 Science and Religion 
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    According to the Bible, the Virgin Mary got pregnant without Joseph's sperm or genetic material. Egg fertilized by Spirit? An angel informed Mary's husband of the pregnancy. Can we believe angels exist as Billy Graham does or regard them as relics of Hebrew mythology, fabrications of man's fertile brain?

    The star of Bethleham! Chances are it was a literary star with no counterpart in nature. Someone is always trying to prove it was a comet or planets lined up.

    So much in the Bible is perceived as the fulfillment of prophecy. Can we take this stuff literally or view it as legends in the collective mind of ancient Middle Eastern tribes. With prophecy, we work backwards. We invent it after the fact.

    Is there such a thing as sin? Sin does not exist in nature. A cat kills a mouse. No sin.

    Billy Graham believes in demons. I am 60 years old and have never seen a demon or evidence of a demon. Nor have I seen a miracle. The Bible is a string of impossibilities. People might say these things do not happen today but happened back then. The notion is ludicrous. Why bend over backwards trying to force reality into a theological frame?

    If Jesus is God, why does He not return now? Why not put things in order now? If the universe is 15 billion years old, will it take Him another 15 billion to do so?

    Can we believe Jesus ascended into heaven? He floated into space? Have astronauts in the Shuttle orbited past Him? In film biographies of Jesus, he has the piercing blue eyes. The Anglo-Saxon Jesus! He reels off vague parables which are riddles to the modern world. The surest way to confuse is to use a parable, analogy, metaphor or simile. What is God? What is the Kingdom of God? Where is God and where did He come from? Is theology man's invention? Books, art and movies take things out of context. They distort reality into episodes with a hope of commercial success. Does the Bible do this? If not, why do we have to buy a Bible in a book store to read the word of God? Why do preachers preach until they are blue in the face and then ask for money? The bottom line is money.

    Apart from imagination and art, how could Jesus have raised Lazarus from the dead? The supernatural does not exist in a natural universe. Faith can not make the impossible happen. Yet, Jesus said, "I am the Resurrection, and the Bible says all things are possible with God. Are those who speak of an empty tomb as evidence of the Resurrection not failing to distinguish between an actual tomb and a tomb of the mind?

    Preachers wear suits and ties and give an appearance of being sane, rational people. When they speak of a rapture and physically rising through the atmosphere to leave behind the unredeemed, we realize something is amiss.

    Evangelist Jimmy Swaggert extolled virtue while patronizing prostitutes. Morality is most plausible when it has a scientific foundation. It was not science that used nuclear energy for bombs. It was a clash between tax-funded military establishments which have traditionally embraced religion. If one gets paid to perpetuate ignorance, he will generally do it.

    Mormons are on the cutting edge of Christianity. They claim Jesus came to western America to save Indians. If intelligent life is discovered in another part of the galaxy, a sect will arise claiming Jesus appeared to redeem lost aliens.

    The age of theology lay between 3000 B.C. and 600 A.D. The age of science began 400 years ago. Carl Sagan, in his book, "The Demon-Haunted World," called science the candle in the dark.

    Science is the way, evolution over creationism, observation over revelation, objectivity over subjectivity. Our eyes and ears tell us how things are. It is as we suspected when we were kids, before organized religion sapped our energy. Religion is flawed. We are physical, not spiritual. We are alive when we are alive. We are dead when we are dead. We are not dead when we are alive. We are not alive when we are dead.

    We live in a natural universe. The supernatural does not exist apart from man's imagination and his tendency toward myth. Carl Sagan left us with these words, "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence." Science is the candle, not mythology, not astrology, not religion.

    This being said, I still subscribe to the ultimate message of the Gospels. If the Universe is 15 billion years old and middle age, Jesus Christ will return in another 15 billion years. His return will be in the nick of time to save believers at the brink of the universe's demise. He will save the souls of all believers in the cosmos. At that point, religion and science are the same. The 1% of truth in the Bible merges with the 1% of truth in science. Eternity becomes a conscious mist, 1% blissful, 99% flaming, heaven and hell.


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  3. #2 Re: Science and Religion 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Colyer
    The age of theology lay between 3000 B.C. and 600 A.D. The age of science began 400 years ago.
    I disagree. When you speak of the age of theology, you seem to be speaking of the writing of major scriptures. That is ok with me. However, I consider that you are misusing the word science. What began 400 years ago is not science in its totality, but something different. Science began at the same time that you ascribe to religion. The Greeks certainly had many scientists. Perhaps you should pick a different word, or apply an adjective, when next you post the above about science.


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  4. #3 Re: Science and Religion 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hermes
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Colyer
    The age of theology lay between 3000 B.C. and 600 A.D. The age of science began 400 years ago.
    I disagree. When you speak of the age of theology, you seem to be speaking of the writing of major scriptures. That is ok with me. However, I consider that you are misusing the word science. What began 400 years ago is not science in its totality, but something different. Science began at the same time that you ascribe to religion. The Greeks certainly had many scientists. Perhaps you should pick a different word, or apply an adjective, when next you post the above about science.
    I most certainly agree with Hermes. Science, in fact, was most definitely there BEFORE religion. Hominids had to survive before they could bury their dead. It takes science to survive. Period.

    Scriptures, however, were not plentiful, especially in the west 3000 B.C.E.
    Most religious tradition was passed down orally. Even in the far east, major religions such as Vedic Hinduism were largely oral until the Aryans came around 2000 B.C.E. Even then, it was some time until the Vedas were written.
    I aslo disagree with this: "The age of theology lay between 3000 B.C. and 600 A.D," but just becuase it doesn't make sense.
    Let me warm up first....don't want to pull a hammy.
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  5. #4  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Colyer
    Apart from imagination and art, how could Jesus have raised Lazarus from the dead?
    Now days we call it a defibrillator.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Colyer
    The supernatural does not exist in a natural universe.
    Supernatural phenomena are things that can not or have not yet been explained and accepted by the scientific community. It does not mean they are impossible.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Colyer
    Faith can not make the impossible happen.
    Is it not the faith in ourselves that created the computer you are using now. No one does anything consciously without faith.
    Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself. -Spoon Boy
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  6. #5  
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaBOB
    Is it not the faith in ourselves that created the computer you are using now. No one does anything consciously without faith.
    I think you are using a highly particular sense of the word faith.
    Faith in the religious sense arguably refers to an unsubstantiated expectation that certain things are true and that certain things will happen/not happen.
    The kind of faith that led to the computer was belief in the methodologies of science and technology founded upon repeated and repeatable success of these methodologies.
    Those two things are really wholly different in characcter and consequence. It is an unfortunate aspect of language that the same word has come to be used in two such contrasting ways.
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  7. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    It is an unfortunate aspect of language that the same word has come to be used in two such contrasting ways.
    True. Perhaps this more than anything else confuses many theists. They are correct in that both scientists and theists have some faith in their presuppositions. Many theists do not ever look beyond thatl; they cannot demonstrate their fait, they are not allowed to question their faith, and they are not allowed to bring the tenets of their faith into the modern era. Followers of science, o nthe other hand, consider it important to demonstrate, challenge, and progress their understanding.
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  8. #7  
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    Hmmm.. well I don't know about you but my faith in religion is the same as my faith in science.

    I use the computer as an example because it is very much so a miracle. Maybe it is the way I look at religion. When I think God I don't think of some bearded old man floating in the clouds, I think of ourselves. God is in us all. Faith is the same no matter how it is applied. This is why I see no difference in science or religion.

    For some reason I don't think I explained that any better than I did before. Tell me if that is so.
    Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself. -Spoon Boy
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  9. #8  
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaBOB
    Hmmm.. well I don't know about you but my faith in religion is the same as my faith in science.

    I use the computer as an example because it is very much so a miracle. Maybe it is the way I look at religion. When I think God I don't think of some bearded old man floating in the clouds, I think of ourselves. God is in us all. Faith is the same no matter how it is applied. This is why I see no difference in science or religion.

    For some reason I don't think I explained that any better than I did before. Tell me if that is so.
    I do not understand what you mean. Can you elaborate? What is faith? What is your faith in religion, and what is your faith in science?
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  10. #9  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hermes
    They are correct in that both scientists and theists have some faith in their presuppositions.
    This is the point at which daBob appears to have got stuck. It is true, at the outset of an experiment, or testing of a new hypothesis, the scientist has faith that his view will be shown to be correct. He may have almost no explicit evidence to support this view - he is going on 'gut instinct'. He is acting on faith.

    But there the similarity ends, because his act is a matter of testing his belief through experiment, or observation. If the experiment falsifies his belief the scientist, with regret, will abandon that belief. The same is not true of faith in religion.
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  11. #10 Re: Science and Religion 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dingus
    Quote Originally Posted by Hermes
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Colyer
    The age of theology lay between 3000 B.C. and 600 A.D. The age of science began 400 years ago.
    I disagree. When you speak of the age of theology, you seem to be speaking of the writing of major scriptures. That is ok with me. However, I consider that you are misusing the word science. What began 400 years ago is not science in its totality, but something different. Science began at the same time that you ascribe to religion. The Greeks certainly had many scientists. Perhaps you should pick a different word, or apply an adjective, when next you post the above about science.
    I most certainly agree with Hermes. Science, in fact, was most definitely there BEFORE religion. Hominids had to survive before they could bury their dead. It takes science to survive. Period.

    Scriptures, however, were not plentiful, especially in the west 3000 B.C.E.
    Most religious tradition was passed down orally. Even in the far east, major religions such as Vedic Hinduism were largely oral until the Aryans came around 2000 B.C.E. Even then, it was some time until the Vedas were written.
    I aslo disagree with this: "The age of theology lay between 3000 B.C. and 600 A.D," but just becuase it doesn't make sense.
    Science and religion as two seperate things which we can compare to each other began precisely at the same time when they were first considered two different things. Of course this may have different dates for different cultures and people. In fact, I have seen clear evidence that many people still have not managed to make that distinction.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
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