07-26-12, 03:31 PM #1
Buddhism VS Science
I got into a really long debate last night with a friend of mine. He is an avid science hater, he is always claiming “science is often wrong and is always changing with little consistence”. After this statement from him he proceeds to try to explain to me why “most” scientists just rip off Buddhism and even the accepted scientific method is a rip off of Buddhism. I’ve been looking around and trying to do some research, I figured I would post this to see if people could direct me to several places so I can continue to do more research.
Thanks for the help.
07-26-12, 03:35 PM #2
While there are some aspects of Buddhism that seem to be aligned with the philosophy of science, Buddhism isn't science. The fact that science is always updating it's models is a strength, not a weakness.
07-26-12, 03:41 PM #3
07-26-12, 03:51 PM #4
Science basically proves itself by technology, which utilizes scientific discoveries to actually make things that work. The products of science are self-evident.
07-26-12, 03:57 PM #5
07-26-12, 03:59 PM #6
07-27-12, 12:42 PM #7
After this statement from him he proceeds to try to explain to me why “most” scientists just rip off Buddhism
One place where Buddhism might arguably have been more scientific and very much in advance of its time was in its psychology. There definitely is a very distinctive Buddhist psychology. I personally believe that some aspects of Buddhist psychology remain more sophisticated than corresponding aspects of Western psychology (and Western philosophy of mind), even today.
and even the accepted scientific method is a rip off of Buddhism.
But then there's the Buddha himself. There's nothing in science that corresponds to him, or to the role that he plays in Buddhism. The Buddha was supposed to be enlightened, he was supposed to have seen the way things really are, in some kind of all-encompassing transcendental vision under the Bodhi tree.
It's true that early Buddhism wasn't so much about faith in the Buddha or his teachings, as it was about the Buddha's disciples achieving a similar transforming realization themselves. But as time went on, popular Buddhism turned more towards faith not only in the historical Buddha, but in a whole pantheon of heavenly Buddhas and advanced Boddhisattvas, to selfless prayer and compassionate grace, and even towards practice of ritual magic.
Buddhism and science are two very different traditions in the history of human thought. It's true that there are some similarities between them, occasionally profound but often only superficial. But there are tremendous differences as well, in style, content, methods and ultimate goals.
I think that what makes Buddhism interesting today in this age of science isn't Buddhism's probably illusory identity with science. It's the fact that Buddhism seems more consistent with the modern scientific worldview than many of the other more essentially supernaturalistic religions might be. Buddhism might be capable of coexisting alongside science without a great deal of contradiction or cognitive dissonance, addressing the more subjective, aesthetic and spiritual sides of human life that science largely ignores.
07-29-12, 03:20 AM #8
One of the traditional Buddhist concepts, "mindfulness," was idiosincratically appropriated by Western psychology/psychiatry - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindful...8psychology%29
The whole "Buddhism and science" issue was probably significantly fueled by a statement that the Dalai Lama once made, namely, that Buddhism will align itself science (ie. give up everything that is not aligned with science).
07-29-12, 06:11 AM #9
Sam Harris, who is the youngest as probably meanest of the atheist "Four Horsemen" is a tremendous champion of Buddhism. He believes a lot of what they're talking about achieving in terms of loss of ego and freedom from stress is attainable through meditation, and meshes well with what we know of neurology today. I don't really buy it, because he seems a little too enamored with the whole thing, and even seemed to skirt the question when someone asked him if he believes in reincarnation, but I would think Buddhists would love him.
07-29-12, 12:09 PM #10
...He is more talking about science vs. religion, creation of the earth etc.
...his point is that science is never truly updating.
07-29-12, 12:14 PM #11
Evidence Builds That Meditation Strengthens the Brain
Evidence Supports Health Benefits of 'Mindfulness-Based Practices'
Meditation Practice May Decrease Risk for Cardiovascular Disease in Teens
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