Should science replace religion?

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by wegs, May 7, 2019.

  1. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Yep. But, sometimes, you just have to walk away when you sense bad intentions.
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  3. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    No, it's not for his anthropology books. It's for the most recent one: Upheaval, wherein he analyzes (brilliantly, btw - that link is to reviews of it on Goodreads. Note, the two idjits who gave it one star didn't have any justification for their rating) the factors that are likely to wipe us out in the very near future unless we come to our senses. The denialists are livid. Denial is a movement that's grown almost to religion onto itself; it encompasses not only denial of the effects of climate change, but also of ecological degradation, overpopulation, monoculture and economic disparity and it`s attracted the traditional evolution and general science deniers. Seriously bad medicine!
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  5. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    I've watched this clip now, and I'd agree with him, partially. Of course, not all ''religious'' people hold fast to the original doctrines and tenets of their beliefs, but many actually do. Are they ''ignorant'' in doing so? I can't answer that. There are religious people who believe that their ancient texts are authoritative, in terms of ''God's word.'' Does that mean that they feel they are to live their lives as the ancients did? Not necessarily, but perhaps it simply means that they accept as truth, what those ancient cultures had to say about a god, at that time. But, he touches on how many people simply ''want'' to believe, and they like categorizing themselves as ''religious.''

    I think the term religion can sometimes serve as a ''catch all'' for various belief systems, not just the ''organized'' versions. He seemed to be focusing mainly on the Abrahamic religions.

    Thanks for sharing that.
    Last edited: May 16, 2019
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  7. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    I do no such thing, and no honest reading of my posts would justify that assertion.
    I am through cutting you guys slack. You need to learn to address the actual content of other people's posting. It's a minimal requirement, that lots of posters have no trouble meeting.
    That's good, because none of my posts address any such irrelevancies.
    I don't know what you think. I know what you post. I quote it, and pay careful attention to it, and respond to that - not (for example) imaginary speculations about "bad faith experiences",
    - which you promised to "clarify", btw -
    and that's more consideration than you grant me, by a long shot.
    I don't "insult" any religions. I respond to the posters here, with quotes and careful attention.
    Outside of those responses, on the topic of religion, I posted a couple of the many benefits of religion earlier in this thread, benefits that I regard as valuable and not available from science. I have been arguing for some time here - years - that science needs a religion or religion equivalent - that it is operating without one, perhaps due to the inadequacy of the candidates, and a great deal of harm is possible and unfortunately manifest in consequence. That's an opinion of mine, offered (with examples, argument, etc) for discussion - neither you nor anyone else has bothered.
    You are a poster here, a forum that is not as subject to the coercive framing control that protects believers/faithful/theists/religious in the larger US world. Nobody is running interference for you, making sure that your every personal attack and bullshit claim is treated with deference. That you experience the situation as "bullying" is significant, and in my opinion worth your attention - but not relevant here.

    Quit posting personal denigration based on misrepresentation of other people's posting, and I will quit responding to such posting by you. Otherwise, the ignore button will save you whatever personal discomfort you feel, and you can post your bs in peace - if you really want to.
  8. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    On the contrary, bad intentions should be confronted:
    "First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a socialist.
    Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out— because I was not a trade unionist.
    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—because I was not a Jew.
    Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me."
    -- Martin Niemöller​

    (Fun fact: I just learned today that Martin Niemöller was a U-Boat commander during World War One.)

    wegs likes this.
  9. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Hmm, you have a valid point. Fun fact: You're not the only one who has suggested to me (in my offline life actually) to confront those ideas of which I don't agree with, instead of backing away.

    I haven't been active on here for a while, and returning recently, has brought back memories of what I don't like about discussion forums, but what I also could stand to improve. #selfreflection

    That said,I literally cringe when I read attacking type posts, that seem to come out of nowhere. I could see if I'm attacking people left and right, but that's not my style. Typically, posters who exhibit this type of argument style, tend to approach most discussion threads, in a similar way. The style is usually not about sharing ideas and seeking to understand others, it is more intended to view people within a discussion as potential ''opponents,'' who are there to compete with, and conquer. They use ad homs when things get really heated, and resort to misconstruing people's posts, in order to validate their responses. In a word, boring. It's also confusing to me, because I don't approach these discussions with competition in mind. I don't approach these discussions with ''winning,'' in mind. My intent, if there is one, is to simply discuss and learn. I'm not saying I'm never at fault within a discussion - perhaps, I didn't explain myself well, or I've posted a sloppy explanation. It might make sense in such cases, to simply ask what I meant, instead of assuming the worst.

    There are styles of reasoning and debating that I gravitate towards over others, and I've seen them displayed in this thread. Not to call them out, but I've long admired billvon and Yazata's approach to these types of topics. Seattle has a very even keel approach, too. Not to say I can't learn from others, but I just won't engage anymore with people who expect respect, but don't wish to offer it.

    Anywho, I googled ''u-boat'' and it's short for undersea boat. I was totally unaware.

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  10. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    I find that a little bit frightening. Have you heard of the Holocaust? ( I took that Niemöller quote from a holocaust website.)
  11. Goldtop Registered Senior Member

    Of course, when it comes to ice cream flavors, whiskys and what one cooks on the bbq, I wouldn't expect Christians to think alike, but when it comes to Christianity, they should all think exactly the same, shouldn't they? If they don't, then they are going against Jesus.

    Persons of faith seem to be under the delusion that faith is a path to knowledge, even though faith has been shown to be wrong.

    Of course, most could care less what flat earthers believe and often just laugh their heads off at them. On the other hand, when Christians want to teach Creationism in school, deny women, gays and atheists their rights, make laws to discriminate against others, then we have a real problem with the "absurd beliefs of others".

    Yes, and I predict all religions will be considered myths within the next 300 years. That's just my personal belief. (;
  12. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    I didn’t know that the abbreviation stood for undersea boat.
  13. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    It is the content of many of your posts on this thread.
    You are describing your own posts, in this thread.
    And - more significantly than you may realize - you are misusing "ad hom" in exactly the same way Bowser and Jan Ardena and Schmelzer and the like misuse it.
    Billvon does not, btw.
    He does bothside stuff,
    (aping the US media feed by reflex, as does Seattle - that's where the impression of "even keel" comes from (billvon does occasionally misrepresent for the purpose of personal attack, which is hardly "even keel" or admirable, but always from a bogus bothsides perspective - hence the aura of "reasonable")
    but as far as I recall he does not misuse "ad hom". Certainly not often. That's worth your pondering, imho.
    The ones that are not myths, as well as the others? The honest and well employed myths, that instruct and elevate and regulate by storytelling, as is fundamental to human moral and ethical development? All in the same box?
    That is nothing to look forward to.
  14. exchemist Valued Senior Member

    Krauss seems still to be missing the basic point that religion is primarily a guide to help the individual live his or her life, and appeals at an aesthetic and emotional level, rather than a rational one. He goes on about people no longer believing old-fashioned doctrines, the lack of a need for divine intervention to explain the world, and morality not depending on religion, but this does not address the core point about what religion does in people's lives. At one point he comes close to admitting he has no existing alternative for it when he talks, messianically, of "what we want to do" being to find a way to provide community etc without the need for religion. (I found myself wondering who "we" were). He speaks like a typical technocrat in fact, completely missing the personal and treating people like political units; voters or citizens instead of individuals with an emotional life.
  15. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    I'd agree to an extent, but that would mean that all Christians would have to a) believe that the Bible is the literal, inerrant Word of God b) not open to interpretations. That's the challenge, because different denominations cherry pick what they follow, and we have a bit of a mess.

    Some may feel that way, sure. I feel it can be a path to wisdom. But certainly not the only path.

    I posted a page or two back, that my main interest lies in societies not banning the right to choose one's belief system, or religion. But, I continued with as long as it doesn't harm others. I'm not sure why many religious types want to coerce others into thinking as they do, and that is where the disconnect comes in. And unfortunately, some are hurting others. Even Jesus told his followers to render to Caesar, what is Caesar's and render to God, what is God's. (Matthew 22:21) Right there, Christianity (Jesus) is pretty much outlining the concept of separation of church and state. But, again, someone else's ''interpretation'' might lead them to see it differently.

    I wonder if you'll be correct, and if so, how they will gradually die out. Hmm.
    Last edited: May 16, 2019
  16. billvon Valued Senior Member

    There's a whole spectrum of creationist beliefs, from literal to barely creationism. I think a lot of these came into being because there are a lot of people who really want to believe in the Bible but have limits on their "suspension of disbelief" - so they make minor or major modifications with the story of creation to let it seem less unbelievable. They are:

    - Young Earth creationism - a literal interpretation of Genesis. God created all the universe in the space of six days. There are obviously a lot of logical problems with this.

    - Omphalos Hypothesis. This is a subset of the literal interpretation. Believers think that God intentionally created a world that looked like it was about 4 billion years old, with the right ratios of radioisotopes, dinosaur bones etc to pull off the illusion.

    - Day-age theory. God created the universe in six days - but maybe to God, a "day" is millions or billions of years long. This solves the problem with the measured age of the Earth (and of life) but doesn't solve many of the other logical problems with Genesis. These are also sometimes referred to as "old earth creationism" theories

    - the Big Gap theory. This theory claims that the universe was created full-form and populated, but was then decimated by a war between God and the Devil. This war left the earth a wasteland, "formless and void" - and conveniently explains why we find fossilized dinosaur bones that seem to be millions of years old. The six days of Creation then happened later.

    -Creation Science. This is an attempt to 're-explain' all the scientific discoveries about the age of the earth. They come up with pseudoscientific reasons that molecular clocks don't work, that radiocarbon dating is really inaccurate and that the universe is really pretty small. This reduces the dissonance between "science" and the bible.

    - Intelligent Design. This theory claims that evolution really happens, but that God guides it, because evolution could never work on its own. This allows believers to keep most of science while adding God into the mix in a more palatable form.

    -Theistic Evolution. This is pretty close to mainstream science. This theory states that God cleverly set everything up during the Big Bang to produce a universe, matter, stars, planets, life and eventually humans. This works well for creationists because it is effectively impossible to disprove; since we can't penetrate back before about 10^-43 seconds after the start of the universe, there's no way (currently) to know what happened before that.

    So there's a wide variety of beliefs to choose from if you are so inclined.
  17. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    I don't think he misses the point (in my opinion), he seems to view religion as an opponent to rational thought. And if he sees it that way, then viewing it even as a guide, might be uncomfortable for him.

    For what it's worth, this is an interesting article written by Krauss, a few years back. It seems to fit in with the OT.
  18. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Why would you think that?

    If person A thinks Jesus was effectively a God, and person B thinks that Jesus was one third of a Trinity thing, which one is going against Jesus?

    There are a lot of disagreements in Christianity over details of the life of Jesus (and a great many other things.) Which is why there have been at least a dozen versions of Christianity, from Eastern Orthodox to the Church of Latter Day Saints. None quite agree.
    Faith hasn't been shown to be wrong. Things taken on faith have (and will continue to be) shown to be wrong.
  19. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    He may be not missing but dismissing that consideration, on the assumption that aesthetics and emotions are less substantial or significant than rationality in some kind of absolute or objective sense.

    In other words, he may be avoiding a point that would be much less comfortable for him to deal with than a neglect of emotion or aesthetics as he understands such things: that rationality is in fact subservient, shallow, and limited in its applications when compared with some of the stuff in the emotional and aesthetic categories. In the hierarchy of human intellectual endeavor, rationality is a level below - it does not include, govern, oversee, comprehend, or otherwise occupy a superior position, or even an equivalent position, but an inferior one. (For one technical approach to this understanding, not the last word but enlightening, this book:

    That is a weak spot in the common handling of religious belief by the scientifically oriented in Western cultures bedeviled by nominally religious idiocy - that it occupies a separate but nominally equivalent (often winked at) realm, and has nothing to do with science. Granted they are fighting alligators rather than draining the swamp, the missing consideration remains - if the alligators are defeated, the central problem is not solved.

    The looming issue is that it - the spiritual, aesthetic, emotional, religious "realm" or "magesterium" or whatever - does have a lot to do with science; its appropriate role of oversight, incorporation, comprehension, and embodiment of science in human life is fundamental, critical, and immediate. We are suffering from its absence.
  20. spidergoat Liddle' Dick Tater Valued Senior Member

    Which it is.
  21. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Some are.
    Some are not.
    Science needs a religion that does not oppose rational thought, but rather comprehends and incorporates it - and the rest of science - into human life.
  22. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Einstein spoke favorably about Buddhism, but not at great length. I believe that he felt Buddhism had the characteristics of what might ''work'' well with science, without competing with it. He seemed to enjoy exploring the connection between consciousness and the universe. Some might define Buddhism as a religion, others consider it to be a philosophy. Considering that Buddhism is concerned with the world around us, it would seem to complement science.
  23. exchemist Valued Senior Member

    But if you are right and that is what he thinks then he IS missing the point. The point in question being that human beings are not purely rational creatures but have a complex inner life that has needs beyond what rationality alone offers. And your linked article rather tends to confirm it: it is just more of the same, considering human beings as citizens and thinking only about engineering social morality and group outcomes, rather than the inner personal needs of the individual human psyche.

    Until he grasps this properly (which he never will) his ersatz religion substitute will get little traction, in my view.
    Last edited: May 16, 2019

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