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Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Science and Religion Collide

The big bang you're hearing is the noise of science and religion colliding, in the UK. The resignation, today, of a respected scientist, who also happens to be a Christian, from an important scientific post, because he suggested that creationism too could be taught in schools, alongside the theory of evolution, is a shame. Dogmatic anything is bad news: whether that be theism, atheism, or Darwinism. Clearly, evolution, a highly-robust theory, is assumed to be true, though unverified - but does not rule out the value of appreciation of alternate views on how the universe and sentient life in it came into being. There are versions of creationism (intelligent design, for instance) that are complex enough to dovetail with science, and surely some aspects of creationism are symbolically, if not philosophically, intriguing - for instance, the idea that nothing comes from nothing, or that, at the start, some being or great force conceived of existence itself. Science should not rule out the possibility of a God - God (separate from how religions may define her) - could co-exist within the natural laws as we so far know them to be. Religion and science work better in tandem, not in glorious isolation, where fanaticism breeds contempt.
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