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Can you be a scientist and still believe in religion?


Mnemonic
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On 10/8/2020 at 6:36 AM, Markus Hanke said:

1. It seems that almost everyone here equates religion with theism, or (even more narrowly) with Christianity.  

!

Moderator Note

I will, for the sake of keeping other discussion in line, note that some are even equating religion with literal interpretations of holy books (e.g. as represented by young-earth creationism)

 
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38 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

It doesn't matter who dispenses justice, if one has faith in justice.

My point is, if being content/at peace is the goal, why does it matter what path you take to get there?

Buddhism/Taoism have no faith, no concept of justice, it's a regression to where all concepts come from. It's observation helped by action, and action helped by observation.

The fulcrum of all of it is that we all live under the illusion that "I" is some-thing. By continuous practice you get to see that "I" is no-thing.

Compassion towards others is the only possible consequence of this realisation. Justice is more of a consequence than a goal in these traditions.

So my qualms are over faith-based religions. I started the discussion with "religion" as synonymous of faith-based religion. Then I corrected myself.

But I don't think that just any practice will get you to be at peace with the world, or with "yourself."

It is no coincidence that most religions have a tradition of retreat, renounce, and observation. Faith and narratives play no role there.

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Well, since Markus has expressed his desire to join a Monastery, I think that definitely answers the OP question.

But, some words to Markus...
( no offence meant, just trying to lighten the mood )

A young monk arrives at the monastery. He is assigned to helping the other monks in copying the old laws of the church by hand. He notices, however, that all of the monks are copying from copies, not from the original manuscript. So, the new monk goes to the head monk to question this, pointing out that if someone made even a small error in the first copy, it would never be picked up! In fact, that error would be continued in all of the subsequent copies.

The head monk, says, “You make a good point, my son.”

He goes down into the dark caves underneath the monastery where the original manuscripts are held in a locked vault. Hours go by and nobody sees the head monk. The young monk gets worried and goes down to look for him. He sees him banging his head against the wall and wailing.

“We missed the R! We missed the R! We missed the R!”

“Father!” cries the young monk. “What’s wrong?”

The head monk with tears in his eyes replies, “The word is CELEBRATE!"

 

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Back to original topic: yes, I think it is very possible for a person to believe in a religion and be a scientist. I, for example, am a science journalist and an orthodox Muslim. I am proficient in vertebrate paleontology and astronomy as my subjects of specific interest in science journalism.

Yes, I believe in evolution and that Earth was created 4.56 billion years ago and humans never coexisted with non avian dinosaurs. The only difference is that I believe that evolution is directional and not haphazardly random.

One thing that enrages me is that atheists, even ignorant ones, consider science as their dominion and prerogative. When I introduce myself as a Muslim, the instant knee-jerk reaction I get is the treatment of a science-denier. As if being a believer equates to being a neanderthal brute or even baboon.

Another, very dangerous trend I have observed is that laymen treat scientific theories and postulates as hard and undeniable facts. In gray areas of uncertainty, they will always, without an exception, take the postulates which run antiparallel with religious teaching and then present it as a fact, decrying criticism from me by calling me a science-denier.

This trend is very dangerous. Not only for social harmony and tolerance, but also for the very progress of science itself, as a neutral, unbiased discipline based on objective observations and transparent deduction.

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20 hours ago, MigL said:

The head monk with tears in his eyes replies, “The word is CELEBRATE!"

I think this joke perfectly captures the essence of the topic.

In this joke the monks were just following teachings blindly. Apparently they never questioned or explored their celebicacy. But i understand (some?) monks are encouraged to explore the experience of celibacy. It's not just an arbitrary rule, but a tool used to explore a headspace few humans choose to navigate. There's an inquisitiveness to it. In this case the transcription error wouldn't matter to their practice because they are focused on the experience.

The mindset of the former monks might not be conducive to science, but the latter monks would have an easier time of it.

Now it might be that certain religious institutions encourage one way of thinking over the other, but religions are not homogenous and each should be taken on their own merits.

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1 hour ago, Prometheus said:

I think this joke perfectly captures the essence of the topic.

In this joke the monks were just following teachings blindly. Apparently they never questioned or explored their celebicacy. But i understand (some?) monks are encouraged to explore the experience of celibacy. It's not just an arbitrary rule, but a tool used to explore a headspace few humans choose to navigate. There's an inquisitiveness to it. In this case the transcription error wouldn't matter to their practice because they are focused on the experience

 

Indeed, but i doubt the prophet's were taught to doubt; it's more a prophecy of a unique event, that happened now that will, at some point, happen tomorrow...

Some-one was the first and it's happened so many time's??? 

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As Christian I can relate this to the verse Matthew 6:24 "No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money."

For me I just tell myself that science is mans interpretation of the world/universe and keep my faith in my heart. 

But a little thinking...

1. You either conflicted about which one to trust most

Or

2. You twist one to match the other so you can have both as belief

 

Edited by Saiyan300Warrior
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23 minutes ago, Saiyan300Warrior said:

For me I just tell myself that science is mans interpretation of the world/universe and keep my faith in my heart. 

But a little thinking...

1. You either conflicted about which one to trust most

Or

2. You twist one to match the other so you can have both as belief

A little thinking, shows you're talking bollox; as the placebo effect suggests... 🙄

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  • 1 month later...

My opinion is that you could know everything there ever is to know about the physical world and still believe in God, as an energy pervading the universe. I think combining both science and religion has its advantages as many of the concepts/truths overlap. It is like the old adage that states if you believe it then its true which has its foundation in both faith and science. 

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On ‎11‎/‎22‎/‎2020 at 3:48 PM, tyluzer said:

if you believe it then its true which has its foundation in both faith and science

The only 'science' that adage is remotely true for, is Holistic, or integrated, Medicine.
 These alternative medicines ( or quackery ) is any practice that aims to achieve the healing effects of medicine, but which lacks biological plausibility and is untested, untestable, or proven ineffective.

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  • 6 months later...

. Yes ... they do complement each other ...

 

. Science is the form of Knowledge which looks for the inner, hidden power in matter. Religion is the form of Knowledge which looks for the inner, hidden power in consciousness. There is no conflict between religion and science ... Why would they be non complementary ... ?

 

. Religion is like ... the center of reality ... and ... Science is like ... the periphery of reality ...

 

. One must make a synthesis ... between ... religion and science ... between ... the abstract and the concrete ...

 

. So I say to you that there is no conflict between religion and science, in the same way that there is no conlifct between the body and the soul. Anyone who lives only on the level of the body will lose his soul, and someone who tries to live in the spiritual dimension will also not be able to live rightly because he will lose contact with his body.

 

. Just as human life is a balance, a synthesis of body and soul, in the same way a complete culture would also be a balance, a synthesis between science and religion.

 

. Science would be its body, religion its soul.

Edited by Anand_Haqq
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15 minutes ago, Anand_Haqq said:

. Yes ... they do complement each other ...

 

. Science is the form of Knowledge which looks for the inner, hidden power in matter. Religion is the form of Knowledge which looks for the inner, hidden power in consciousness. There is no conflict between religion and science ... Why would they be non complementary ... ?

There's evidence that supports one. Not so much for the other.

15 minutes ago, Anand_Haqq said:

. Science would be its body, religion its soul.

There's evidence that supports one of these. Not so much for the other.

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5 hours ago, Anand_Haqq said:

. Yes ... they do complement each other ...

. Religion is like ... the center of reality ... and ... Science is like ... the periphery of reality ...

Religion is based on myth first created by ancient man to explain the wonders of the universe around him/her. Science is a discipline that seeks to explain what we see, based on available observational and experimental evidence. 

5 hours ago, Anand_Haqq said:

. So I say to you that there is no conflict between religion and science, in the same way that there is no conlifct between the body and the soul. Anyone who lives only on the level of the body will lose his soul, and someone who tries to live in the spiritual dimension will also not be able to live rightly because he will lose contact with his body.

We have absolutely no evidence for anything existing that maybe labelled a soul. In fact the supernatural/spiritual nature of such a myth is unscientific at best.

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2 minutes ago, iNow said:

None of this silliness is on topic anyway. 

Can one be a scientist and still believe in religion (or god(s))? Of course. Thread over. 

Bingo!! Father George Lamaitre, Belgian Jesuit priest, known as the father of the BB.

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From my experience, I believe a scientist can have religious beliefs. Because I know there are scientific researchers historically who invented technology and medicine to build their civilisations that believed in their religions. Even though I'm an atheist, I had science teachers in my school who were religious and able to conduct scientific experimentations successfully. They were hired based on their ability to work with children and make scientific decisions for guiding those children's minds into the world of science. I cannot deny those science teachers' intelligence.

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On 10/1/2020 at 1:05 AM, Mnemonic said:

According to the bible Jesus Christ was a supernatural character who could walk on water, occasionally talked to Satan, and could turn water into wine, amongst many other marvels.

Can you be a scientist and still believe in this stuff? As far as I am concerned, you should not be called a scientist or be allowed anywhere near any scientific endeavor if you believe in fictitious myths.

Am I being too aggressive in my attitude? Probably, however science and the scientific approach to research application is a serious technical field that should not be sullied by ridiculous fairy tales.

 

>Please move to the Religion section..

Belief in God and Christian doctrine may have spurred science forward actually. Most of the seminal contributors to the scientific developments from Copernicus onwards all had a form belief in God, in design, and so on. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christians_in_science_and_technology

 

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1 hour ago, Holmes said:

Belief in God and Christian doctrine may have spurred science forward actually. Most of the seminal contributors to the scientific developments from Copernicus onwards all had a form belief in God, in design, and so on. 

Spurred forward? Or merely allowed to continue as long as the nod to god was given?

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5 hours ago, Holmes said:

Belief in God and Christian doctrine may have spurred science forward actually. Most of the seminal contributors to the scientific developments from Copernicus onwards all had a form belief in God, in design, and so on. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christians_in_science_and_technology

 

The Copernicus's, Galileo's, Newton's of this world, were not aware of what modern day science tells us. While certainly even today some scientists may still believe in a God of choice, most don't. Nothing wrong imho with such belief for individual scientists, as long as that belief does not inhibit scientific progress.  

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