Talk:Relationship between religion and science/Archive 3

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Islam and "early historical scientific texts"

Section 'The attitudes of religion towards science' stated: "Some early historical scientific texts have been preserved by religious groups, notably Islam collected scientific texts originating in various countries and Christianity brought them to Europe during the renaissance." This is contradicted by Transmission of Greek philosophical ideas in the Middle Ages, which states (with citations): "The first period of transmission during 8th and 9th centuries was preceded by a period of conquest, as Arabs took control of previously Hellenized areas such as Egypt and Syria in the 7th century.[7] At this point they first began to encounter Greek ideas, though from the beginning, many Arabs were hostile to classical learning.[8] Because of this hostility, the religious Caliphs could not support scientific translations. Translators had to seek out wealthy business patrons rather than religious ones.[8]" -- I am therefore removing it. HrafnTalkStalk 08:16, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Many of the uncited passages in this religon and science article are WP:IMPERFECT. The uncited passages, which have been inherited, are far less "crisp" than those found in Transmission of Greek philosophical ideas in the Middle Ages, as just shown by Hrafn. Nevertheless, I don't see any serious contradictions as Hrafn concludes. Moreover, I think that Hrafn's removal on these grounds and at this time is rather hastey and extraordinarily confusing. For Hrafn has made a concomitant deletion of other sections. Doing so appears to be a knee-jerk reaction to make a WP:POINT. --Firefly322 (talk) 09:14, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
Firefly322: this was unverifiable information that was contradicted by sourced information in -- Transmission of Greek philosophical ideas in the Middle Ages -- which explicitly stated that the "religious Caliphs" (i.e. the relevant "religious groups") did not support transmission (via translation) of the Greek texts. WP:IMPERFECT does not support the retention of such material. I will ignore your grossly incivil, baseless, personal attacks. HrafnTalkStalk 09:49, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
Since neither of us have been working on this material in the lower sections, bringing it up at his point in time appears to be a confusing distraction. --Firefly322 (talk) 09:55, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
I will work on any part of the article I damn well choose. Today, I decided to do a bit of work on 'The attitudes of religion towards science'. Doing so required an explanation longer than can be fitted into an edit summary, so I documented my reasoning here on talk. If you find it to be a "confusing distraction", then don't read it. You aren't the only editor on this article and you weren't the target audience for the top comment in this thread. HrafnTalkStalk 10:14, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
Hope this isn't too far off topic, Hrafn, but noticed your edit to the scientific perspectives section and thought Huxley, T.H. (April 1860). "ART. VIII.- Darwin on the origin of Species". Westminster Review. pp. 541–70. Retrieved 2008-06-29.  might be of interest. It came up while working on Darwinism, and it vividly shows Huxley attacking theological dominance of scientific thought – for example, "It is true that if philosophers have suffered, their cause has been amply avenged. Extinguished theologians lie about the cradle of every science as the strangled snakes beside that of Hercules; and history records that whenever science and orthodoxy have been fairly opposed, the latter has been forced to retire from the lists, bleeding and crushed if not annihilated; scotched, if not slain." . . dave souza, talk 11:32, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
Given that the remainder of that material has just been excised as unsourced, this should be enough of a WP:RS for reintroducing it. Thanks. :) HrafnTalkStalk 15:55, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
Both Browne and Desmond & Moore discuss the significance of the statement, so I can try to provide secondary sources if that's required. Bit busy just now! . . dave souza, talk 16:14, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
I do not believe you can use the Ummayyad's as examples of Islamic belief regarding their acceptance of science, since they were known to prevent people from converting to Islam, and their period in Islamic history by later historians, is regarded as a period and their lineage as being a negative one.

Sunni opinions of the Umayyad dynasty after Muawiyah are typically dim, viewing many of the rulers as sinners and the cause of great tribulation in the Ummah. For example, in the section concerning Quran 60:17[16] in the exegesis by al-Suyuti entitled Dur al-Manthur, the author writes that there exist traditions which describe the Umayyads as "the cursed tree". There are some exceptions to this -- Umar ibn Abd al-Aziz is commonly praised as one of the greatest Muslim rulers after the four Rightly Guided Caliphs.

- Umayyad Caliphate

So using people who are regarded as anti-islam... well I don't think it would be appropriate. Nor would it be accepted as "Islam". Islam being the quran, and what we learn from the quran. The prophet's tradition, we learn, being one part in the quran. Faro0485 (talk) 23:49, 19 August 2009 (UTC)

Bahi-who?

Why is the Bahi section even mentioned here? Aren't they non-existant current science debates? Faro0485 (talk) 03:45, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

I presume you're talking about the Baha'i section? I don't get your second question.
Typo, that should be they are not in any philosophical debate regarding the relationship between religion and science, nor are they a number worth mentioning (claims are of false membership statistics [1]) compared to the other religious beliefs that are more than them and have an relationship with science. Faro0485 (talk) 23:19, 19 August 2009 (UTC)
This section is worth noting if only for the fact that Baha'i is the only world religion that unambiguously accepts the concept of the harmony between science and faith. MARussellPESE (talk) 18:01, 25 April 2009 (UTC)

POV in Conflict Thesis section

I have flagged the "conflict thesis" section for NPOV issues. I see I'm not the first person to notice this. Speciman00 (talk) 02:55, 13 August 2009 (UTC)

Here's some refs that are more favorable to the conflict thesis for starters.: http://www.haydenplanetarium.org/tyson/read/essays/nathist/perimeterofignorance http://www.haydenplanetarium.org/tyson/read/essays/nathist/holywars http://www.tnr.com/booksarts/story.html?id=1e3851a3-bdf7-438a-ac2a-a5e381a70472

Someone may also consider moving some of the material currently in the conflict thesis section to the article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conflict_thesis Speciman00 (talk) 03:04, 13 August 2009 (UTC)


  1. I have taken the liberty of moving this to a new thread. Making it a response to a thread whose last comment was 18 months ago really isn't appropriate.
  2. Rather than simply templating the section, it'd probably be more practical if you offered some alternate text.
  3. I would note that while the sources you cite are prominent generally, none of them are scholars on the relationship between religion and science.
  4. Per WP:SUMMARY, it is appropriate that mention is made in this article as well as at Conflict thesis.

HrafnTalkStalk(P) 04:05, 13 August 2009 (UTC)

I'll make the observation that past talk on this issue has considered the facts that (1) modern scholarship does not reject all conflict between religion and science, and (2) modern scholarship does recognize that Draper and White originally painted the issue with too broad a brush, focusing only on conflicts and not enough on benign or neutral interactions. Therefore, when the page says that modern scholarship has rejected the conflict thesis, that is not the same thing as saying that modern scholarship considers religion to be good for science. I've made a few edits to the section, hopefully making it clearer that it is only the original Draper-White formulation that has been refuted. Having said that, I would tend to agree that the page might be improved by having more (sourced!) material on examples of religious interference in science. --Tryptofish (talk) 16:51, 13 August 2009 (UTC)
I think a lot of the misperception here comes from the structure. The conflict section only discusses the historical conflict thesis, while the subsequent sections give an array of more philosophical approaches. I certainly think it is no worse to cite Coyne and Tyson in favor of conflict than it is to cite Gould in favor of independence in the next section.
Also, the conflict thesis section is longer and more focused on criticism than the corresponding sections after it. I would advocate removing all but the first sentence of the first paragraph, since the Augustine quote is certainly not introductory material, and the unsourced claim that it is widely circulated is doubtful. I think I will attempt said edit and also try to put more info on conflict in general above the section.Speciman00 (talk) 04:45, 14 August 2009 (UTC)
Overall, I agree with the direction you are taking this. Thanks. --Tryptofish (talk) 17:37, 14 August 2009 (UTC)
P.S.: There are related issues at Religion#Religion and science, so you may also want to take a look at that. (See also the discussion at Talk:Religion#Science, Religion and Conflict.) --Tryptofish (talk) 17:44, 14 August 2009 (UTC)

Religion and medicine

Certain writers have specialized in describing the relationship between religion and medicine. It might be a good thing if there could be an entry on this too. [2][3][4] ADM (talk) 14:14, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

I think the relationship between religion and medicine is way (WAY, WAY … :) ) too big an issue to be covered here. Think 'orthodox medicine=lack of faith' (Christian Science) transfusions (Jehovah's Witnesses), Abortion, Stem-cells, Reproductive therapy, Therapeutic cloning, Euthanasia, etc, etc, etc. The whole realm is only tenuously related to issues raised in this article (far more closely related to Bioethics). Really needs its own article (assuming that one doesn't already exist under some title). HrafnTalkStalk(P) 14:57, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

Supernaturalism and naturalism

The conflict between science and religion is a philosophical conflict between supernaturalism and ontological naturalism. This isn't even mentioned on the site, why? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 84.158.210.198 (talk) 18:56, 20 January 2010 (UTC)

Perhaps because nobody has chosen to cite a reliable source to that effect? See WP:A. Gabbe (talk) 20:11, 20 January 2010 (UTC)

Pope Benedict XVI's Statement

The statement about Pope Benedict XVI seems to be out of context. After reading the article to which it references [5] , it seems the pontiff is not denying the effectiveness of condoms, as the reference suggests. What he is actually saying is that abstenence is more effective at preventing the sexual transmission of AIDS. There is debate about the most effective method for controling that type of AIDS transmission, but it is far from an outright denial of the science behind it. I would suggest a re-edit of this statement to make it more accurate. Gredloc (talk) 19:30, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

Control Belief Model

I think there should be more discussion of Richard Jones's "control belief" thesis. Only this thesis explains the history of "war" and "peace" between religion and science. It explains the conflict over Galileo and Darwin and the general support religion was supplied when science is not challenging some tenet of Christianity. [ Ryan Phillips]

Stephen J Gould

In S J Gould's Ever Since Darwin (1970's), the author argues that science and religion are not naturally in conflict, citing Thomas Burnett's Sacred History of the Earth (1680's). According to Gould, the enemy of science is not religion, but irrationalism. Orthodoxy and dogmatism also rank high against inquisitiveness and logic. Crasshopper (talk) 03:40, 29 March 2010 (UTC)

Biased towards science

In the opening statement, it says:

"Religions rely on revelation and faith, while science relies on observable, repeatable experiences, ontological naturalism, philosophical realism, rational skepticism, fallibilism, the thesis that nothing comes from nothing, and the law of economy"

Maybe it would make this article more reliable if the examples for religion were a bit more fleshed out, or lengthy.—Preceding unsigned comment added by Kegsdragondude (talkcontribs) 08:54, 26 April 2010

I modified the title, and placed the quote. Willluckin (talk) 09:12, 26 April 2010 (UTC)
Anyone is free to add to the page. The key factor in this instance is sourcing to back up the additions. --Tryptofish (talk) 18:19, 26 April 2010 (UTC)

Thermodynamics

Moved from article:

The science of thermodynamics, the study of the energy and entropy of systems, has been used in argument either for or against religion, since its inception. Since the publication of German physician Robert Mayer’s 1841 postulate that the "energy of the universe can neither be created nor destroyed", articulating the law of conservation of energy and leading to discussion as to where the initial energy of the universe came from, English physicist William Thomson’s 1852 article "On a Universal Tendency in Nature to the Dissipation of Mechanical Energy", which proposed the heat death theory of universal end, and German physicist Rudolf Clausius' 1865 The Mechanical Theory of Heat, which raised the concept of entropy as the signifier of change or irreversibility in the universe, debaters have used thermodynamics in argument both for and against religion. In modern times, some opponents of the theory of evolution argue that thermodynamics' second law, often paraphrased as the universal tendency of all systems to tend towards disorder, disproves evolution. Critics of this argument point out that it stems from a misunderstanding of the second law of thermodynamics, as it applies only to closed systems and the earth is not a closed system.

This is unsourced, and is a detailed creationist claim with little or no relevance to the broad subject of this article. The claim is covered in this source, but it's inappropriate to go into all such claims in this overview. The point about Thomson's religious views is unexplained, and his views were entirely in line with earlier concepts – John Ray, John Herschel and Adam Sedgwick are much more significant figures in the development of ideas of science sa applied religion. . . dave souza, talk 20:33, 30 April 2010 (UTC)

Even though I've previously made edits trying to clean it up (after another editor first added it), I'm going to agree with you. Removing it is fine. --Tryptofish (talk) 16:52, 1 May 2010 (UTC)

Title is not NPOV

Simply calling it "Religion and science" would be enough. Calling it "Relationship between..." is an assumption that there is relationship. Assumption is not scientific. The title is anti-science.

"Relationship between religion and science" is just an attempt by religion (read Christianity) to piggyback on the good name of science. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 89.253.73.146 (talk) 13:27, 13 May 2010 (UTC)

Actually, I agree with the suggested outcome, even though I do not buy the reasoning behind it. I don't think the page takes a POV with respect to whether the relationship in question is a good one or an adversarial one. But it does seem to me, now that you point it out, that the shorter title would be entirely appropriate. What do other editors think of the rename? --Tryptofish (talk) 18:13, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
I think the current title is fine, neutral, and preferable. A shorter title has the advantage of brevity, but it is more ambiguous and might provoke misunderstandings. Some people might read narrower meanings into the title than are appropriate for the current page, imagining that it focuses on collaborations between R+S (such as encouraged by the Dalai Lama); others who imagine that conflict is fundamental might imagine it aims to discuss only their conflict. The fuller title alerts readers right away - from a "distance" so to speak - that they should expect something more complex and nuanced. Health Researcher (talk) 18:37, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
Of course there's a relationship: a love-hate one, in fact. The viewpoint that religion and science have been (or to be precise, ought to be) entirely separate is just one of many, many ideas about how the two fields relate. Ironically, it is both the pro-science, anti-religion and pro-religion, anti-science advocates who want to keep the two separate.
Scientists since the time of Galileo have sought the endorsement of religion (maybe even further back, for all I know). Galileo's early career got a big boost from prominent religious people.
I think the objection above comes mainly from one small current in the r/s stream, i.e., the objection on the part of pro-evolution atheists to "Creation Science". Our articles on evolution, creationism and the evolution-creation debate have not paid enough attention to the clash of motives but have focused on (or been co-opted by) attempts to proof one side right. That is an NPOV violation, if you're looking for one.
I suggest we describe all the aspects of r/s and not just the minority that wants to condemn and isolate religion. Many scientists welcome religion or are religious themselves. The 5% of scientists who reject evolution are (I'm guessing here) probably religious, or at least open-minded about religion. Some scientists even study religion from the viewpoint that, hey, those men of faith might actually be right about the supernatural.
And not all religious people are anti-science, although there are longstanding objections to the way scientists assume the material world is all that can or should be studied. These objections can get quite heated. But a lot of religious people welcome science as a way of humbly studying God's creation. --Uncle Ed (talk) 20:27, 13 May 2010 (UTC)
"Of course there's a relationship: a love-hate one, in fact." That is nonsense, just as this article. There are so many wrongs with that statement. There is a love-hate relationship between science and some more extremist religions.
With the risk of coming off all zen and stuff here, you can find relationship between everything. But you do not have articles about all possible relationships.
This whole relationship deal is about forcing religion (read Christianity) on science. This relationship is not mutual. This is a quote from the page: "Even many 19th century Christian communities welcomed scientists who claimed that science was not at all concerned with discovering the ultimate nature of reality." In other words, science is accepted if it submits to the wills of the Christians. The preceding sentence says: "Non-Christian faiths have historically integrated well with scientific ideas, as in the ancient Egyptian technological mastery applied to monotheistic ends, the flourishing of logic and mathematics under Hinduism and Buddhism, and the scientific advances made by Muslim scholars during the Ottoman empire." So perhaps this article should be re-named "Relationship between non-Christian religions and science"?
I tell a Christian I have a miracle I want to show him. He is all exited when I take him there. When we are there I show him a horse giving birth. The Christian is very likely going to be disappointed. This is not what a Christian think of when he thinks of miracles. This is in relation to Brian Swimme mentioned in the article.
If I tell a Christian Jesus spoke to me, he will believe me. I tell him Buddha spoke to me, he will not. At least he will not believe it was Buddha. Perhaps Satan was trying to lead me away from Jesus? So maybe we should have a "Relationship between Christianity and groupthink" page? A "Relationship between Christianity and communal reinforcement" page? But those would be biased, right?
The intro says "Religions rely on revelation and faith, while science relies on observable, repeatable experiences, ontological naturalism, philosophical realism, rational skepticism, fallibilism, the thesis that nothing comes from nothing, and the law of economy." Well, Aristotle stated that males and females have different number of teeth, without bothering to check; he then provided long arguments as to why this is the way things ought to be. There are many alternatives to the scientific method and they are all related one way or other.
And math is not science. Math does not deal with reality. Math deals with the abstract. If you want to relate math to anything religious, it's numerology. Numerology is part of most religions, I believe.
Wiki is more and more looking like American textbooks: Anything goes--let the market decide. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 89.253.73.146 (talk) 14:07, 16 May 2010 (UTC)
@89.253.73.146: There are scholarly books and journals devoted to religion/science relations, so this article is not about just "any" relationship made up at the whim of Wikipedia. Many statements about Christians that you supplied in the previous paragraphs are inaccurate as generalizations, especially as blanket generalizations (for counterexamples, see, for example, Religious pluralism and John Macquarrie). Please stay focused on improving the article, and remember that "Article talk pages should not be used by editors as platforms for their personal views on a subject" (WP:TALK). Health Researcher (talk) 15:09, 16 May 2010 (UTC)
You can find scholarly articles on anything. The number of books on Christianity and science illustrate Christianity's problem with science, not the other way around. This is an artificial relationship created by Christians.
I supplied no generalizations. I quoted this article, for example. If Christianity looks bad it's because of the Christians.
There is nothing to improve. This article is Christian apologetics. It seems Wiki has been hijacked by apologists like you. You are the enemy within, the ones who have turned Wiki into a pomo joke. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 89.253.73.146 (talk) 19:34, 16 May 2010 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── At this point, I withdraw my suggestion to shorten the title of the page. Does not need to be improved. And I think this talk thread has more than run its course. --Tryptofish (talk) 19:41, 16 May 2010 (UTC)

Oh, shucks! and just when it was getting interesting... <g> The IP just doesn't seem to "get" what article Talk pages are for. There is always room for improvement, for example how the position of the See also section should be (and soon will be) above the Notes section to come into compliance with the manual of style. There, it can be shown that this article can be improved. And involved editors may always find ways to show, in a way that piques the reader's interest, how the relationship between religion and science is so much more than just whatever is happening, or historically, whatever has happened, between Catholicism and Western science. So much more. At any rate, I enjoyed the above conversation.
And so far as the topic of this section goes, I have to agree that the title of the article, while just a little long and unusual for an encyclopedia, does comply with NPOV, and should not be changed. Personally, when I think of the "relationship between religion and science", I think of how close and how strong this relationship has been in the past (again, a Western bent). I think of how, even though he was able to prove Copernicus to be closer to the Truth than Ptolemy was, and prove it beyond any shadow of doubt, the Church was able to effectively squelch Galileo and his telescopic discoveries for a significant period of time. As I said, there is so much more to it than that, and so have I learned by reading this article and by reading this Talk page. Thank you for that!
 —  Paine (Ellsworth's Climax)  01:39, 6 June 2010 (UTC)
  • PS. One very important consideration is the search engine results, and I just Googled "religion and science". This article was number one on the hitlist!

Edits to "The scientific community's perspective"

First of all, I grouped some of the more random background information under "History" (for which we could probably think of a better header).

Besides that, under "Studies of scientists' belief in God" I have again tried to provide a summary of what is otherwise a big boring list of percentages. I also mention some of the most recent research by Professor Ecklund.

Constructive criticism is welcome. Tesseract2 (talk) 22:01, 1 June 2010 (UTC)

You left me a note on my talk page, and I figured I would answer it here. I think the new third-level header is much better. What I reacted to before was mainly the word "relevant" (since we assume that if it's here, it's relevant), and to a lesser degree, the word "statistics". --Tryptofish (talk) 22:25, 1 June 2010 (UTC)
I am glad I asked before plunging into a violent depression over, as I saw it, "the world's indifference to the majesty of headers". Tesseract2 (talk) 22:37, 1 June 2010 (UTC)
Oh, not at all! :-) --Tryptofish (talk) 22:39, 1 June 2010 (UTC)

Narrow perspective intro

The intro starts:

The relationship between religion and science has been a focus of the demarcation problem.

which is a ridiculously narrow perspective (though valid). The relationship between religion and science stretches out over 2000 years with conflicts, coexistence and crossfertilization, a time range during most the very specialized demarcation problem wasn't invented formulated. D*rn, the universe didn't emerge in the middle of the 19th century! Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 11:50, 3 June 2010 (UTC)

And to stress how specialized it is: Larry Laudan rejects it!
The relationship between religion and science is more like a societal problem: 1. do they cooperate or quarrel, 2. would the world be better if one of them didn't exist, 3. if they both provide value to the society, is there a part of the summed up value that can be attributed to synergy, or is there a conflict diminishing the summed up value from whether they were completely independent? Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 14:51, 11 June 2010 (UTC)

Huh...?

"Prominent modern scientists advocating disbelief in religion include evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins and Nobel prize winning physicist Stephen Weinberg. For a more complete list, see List of atheists (science and technology). Prominent scientists advocating belief include Nobel prize winning physicist Charles Townes and climatologist John T. Houghton. For a more complete list, see List of Christian thinkers in science.[52]"

I'm not sure but... why do we mention these atheists as advocating disbelief and theists as advocating belief when many people in those lists are just believers/nonbelievers and don't really have much to say about religion and science's relationship? I mean, just because a scientist is an athiest doesn't mean he thinks religious people are a bunch of delusional people and just because a scientist is religious doesn't mean he's going to try to argue or advocate that belief in the scientific arena. 98.198.83.12 (talk) 01:28, 23 July 2010 (UTC)

And I'm not talking about the examples used. Dawkins and Wienberg do advocate atheism, but what I mean is, we tell the reader to go to a list that has nothing to do with advocates for either position, but rather believers and nonbelievers. 98.198.83.12 (talk) 01:30, 23 July 2010 (UTC)
I see what you mean. If we agree that the specific examples can remain in the section, perhaps we should treat those lists in a different way. I still think there is some value in providing some sort of link to those lists, but perhaps it would be better to delete those two sentences from the text and move the list links to either the "see also" section at the bottom of the page, or to a "further information" tag at the top of the section. Any preferences between those options, or other ideas? --Tryptofish (talk) 16:29, 23 July 2010 (UTC)

Historical and material claims of religion

One of the points used by writers such as Richard Dawkins, in defending the conflict thesis and specifically in rebutting NOMA, is that religions make specific concrete historical and material claims, and that these claims are incompatible with a scientific view of the world.

NOMA holds that the magisteria of science and religion have zero overlap; that is, they do not (or should not) make any claims about the same domains of knowledge. The operation of material reality is held to be the province of science, while morality and ultimate truth are the province of religion. Yet (or so Dawkins says) religions regularly do make claims about material reality. These include (for instance) the origin or disposition of particular historical artifacts, such as the Shroud of Turin, or the relics of saints; the efficacy of prayer or ritual in accomplishing healing or other observable material effects; and so on.

Christianity holds that Jesus was resurrected and then assumed into Heaven, and therefore did not leave a physical corpse behind; Catholicism holds that Mary was also assumed into Heaven. These are material claims, and could in principle be falsified materially: if archaeologists found a corpse and demonstrated that it was the remains of Jesus or Mary, these would falsify these material claims. Similarly, many researchers have claimed to put the belief in the healing power of prayer to material test.

The argument here is not to claim that religion is debunked by the above; rather, that because religions do regularly, consistently, and unexceptionally make material claims, that NOMA is debunked, and the notion of conflict is strengthened. --FOo (talk) 05:31, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

I don't know that the article is incorrect on the point of NOMA. Or, indeed, that NOMA itself is "rebutted" just because some (well, let's be honest, many) adherents to religion don't agree to bide by its terms of disengagement. I think the point that Gould (et al.) is articulating is that NOMA is a possible relationship between science and religion that allows each some separate turf to make "truth" statements on. Since Gould was a seasoned opponent of creationism, he was certainly well aware that NOMA is not adopted by many religious adherents. Anyway, if you have a specific change to the article in mind, spell it out here. Cheers, --PLUMBAGO 14:24, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

Hinduism

The Hinduism section does not really lay down the relationship between the particular religion and science. It immediately jumps into evolution/creationism and concludes on the same subject. There needs to be an integration of that into a full section speaking of science as whole; not just a part or contradictory idea of science. That section needs work and extra work from a source of expertise. Andrew Colvin • Talk 07:43, 22 August 2010 (UTC)

Ancient Temples as Academia

I'm wondering if anyone is interested in the ancient worship of Egyptian and Mesopotamian, Greek, Persian, Roman and Chinese gods of medicine, law, mathematics, geography, surveying, metal working, divination, alchemy, history, accounting, administration, natural philosophy, architecture, engineering, arts and crafts, skilled workmen, and their responsibility for teaching, testing, certification, licensure and periodic examination of skills. 69.39.110.136 (talk) 10:59, 29 August 2010 (UTC)

Retaining external link to Zygon

It seems to me that another editor who deleted an external link to Zygon was overzealous. He cited WP:ELNO #19, but that rule states that an exception is links that "otherwise qualify as something that should be linked". And the page states that a links that should be linked are "Sites that contain neutral and accurate material that is relevant to an encyclopedic understanding of the subject and cannot be integrated into the Wikipedia article due to copyright issues, amount of detail (such as professional athlete statistics, movie or television credits, interview transcripts, or online textbooks), or other reasons." (from [section] #3).

It seems to me that Zygon, as a peer-reviewed journal devoted to the topic, is a source of much encyclopedic information on the topic -- indeed, more info than could ever be integrated into this page. Therefore it seems a prime example of a valid external link. Am I mistaken in my reasoning here? I will revert per WP:BRD. Health Researcher (talk) 23:37, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

In addition to ELNO #19 the journal is also linked to our own article in the "Current scholarship" and "Religion and science community" sections. This is the what Wikipedia prefers: whenever possible link to our own content and avoid sending readers to other websites. If the significance of the journal is not clear enough to the reader, improve the corresponding part of thid article and our article on the journal. If the reader is interested in the website, it is trivially found as the official website of that article. The reader is best served by having the most relevant material early in the article and having a fairly brief set of informative external links at the end (the current 15 are quite a lot). There is very rarely a need to have a link to a website that we have an article about; it is unnecessary redundancy. I propose we represent it in the "See also" section instead of "External links" if editors think a link beyond what we already have is appropriate. JonHarder talk 11:04, 13 October 2010 (UTC)


Does anyone want to do some research/editing about Zygon's reputability? Without that information, users may be forced to go looking elsewhere in the end anyway.-Tesseract2 (talk) 13:34, 13 October 2010 (UTC)

Barth fails to mention evolution??

Section 'Independence'

What sort of ridiculous & biased notion is this? 1- who in their right mind thinks it's necessarily a failure to not mention evolution? 2- more importantly, this IS NOT TRUE.

Barth had a lot of silly things to say about evolution. I don't know if he's entirely opposed to it or just somewhat opposed, but you don't read Barth for his insights into the hard sciences. If wikipedia folk determine that stuff merits space in an entry, that's fine and I'd enjoy working on it. But this tripe can't stay.

Here's evidence: all of these are from the Church Dogmatics, § 44. according to Bonting , the Church Dogmatics "does not discuss evolution."

§ 44 Man as the Creature of God:

"But in these points he clearly approximates to the higher, the so-called anthropoid ape. And according to Titius we cannot exclude from the general process of evolution the emergence of the human psyche" (82)

"The idea of evolution in itself does not exclude this fact. Organic nature in its tendency towards individualisation and increased organisational complexity has sufficient room for even so peculiar a phenomenon as that of man." (83)

"He will then find himself in the closest harmony with the biological idea of evolution. Work in the service of this ideal as undertaken by man at the peak of the process of evolution, the mastery of nature as a cultural process, is only the continuation of evolution beyond the formation of species to their harmonious integration as a totality." (84)

"that man must be regarded as adapted already in his mother's womb to the peculiarity of his premature birth and his later acquirement by his own active efforts of the bearing and speech characteristic of his species, and he cannot therefore be placed merely in the same stage of evolution as that of mammals, primates or chimpanzees..." (87)

Here's where I got this info, but some of you folks may not be able to get there if you're not using a university's internet.. http://solomon.dkbl.alexanderstreet.com/dkbl.search.html There's plenty more in the section. Barth talks about Darwin and "anti-Darwins," too.

Oh, it looks like on p.211 of this "Creation and double chaos" book, he mentions that Barth doesn't discuss extra-terrestrials, either. Does that little quip deserve space on wikipedia, too?

Huh, wrote more than I expected... Prolly because I just pulled an all-nighter writing a paper on Barth. And I thought I was sick of that guy... I got here through googling Barth, and I'm brand-new here so I'm cautious about making edits to articles right now.. So I'll keep an eye on this article for a while.


Christopherosly (talk) 13:38, 14 December 2010 (UTC)

I would agree that the claim appears to be demonstrably false. This probably renders the source unreliable & means that we should eliminate the whole passage sourced to it. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 14:03, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
I agree w/Hrafn. Wekn reven i susej eht Talk• Follow 16:31, 4 June 2011 (UTC)

Lead paragraph- Logic and reason

The lead paragraph currently says: "Religion often relies on revelation and faith, while science typically seeks dependence upon reason and empiricism (see scientific method)." Twice, I have mede an edit (with citation) that indicates the use of logic and reason by theologians. Twice also rejected by an editor without consideration.
Theology certainly includes the use of logic and reason: there are dozens of citations that could be given in support. The entire subject of apologetics uses logic and reason to make a theological point. Many theologians also used empiricism in their studies. This article makes many references or has citations referencing apologetics.
I have tagged the incomplete and inaccurate sentence as being dubious. Logic and Reason are used by both religion and science. The article must reflect this.
Grantmidnight (talk) 01:06, 6 July 2011 (UTC)


Thanks for your patience! I think you make a valid point. I have tried a rewrite that describes religion as often using faith and revelation on top of empiricism and logic.-Tesseract2(talk) 02:50, 6 July 2011 (UTC)

I would point out that a key difference between science and religion, and a not-infrequent source of the occasional conflicts that arise between them, is that fact that religion not-infrequently privileges "revelation and faith" above "reason and empiricism". It is not a case of "also acknowledges", but "primarily acknowledges". HrafnTalkStalk(P) 04:08, 6 July 2011 (UTC)


To me, that also seems a valid point. Religion is such a loose word though, I just added some tentativeness to the language (i.e. "often primarily")-Tesseract2(talk) 19:13, 6 July 2011 (UTC)

I would suggest that if it does not privilege "revelation and faith" (and/or mysticism, and a few other related concepts) over "reason and empiricism", then it most probably isn't religion. I've yet to come across anything that a reasonable person would label a "religion" that is primarily "reason and empiricism"-based. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 05:15, 7 July 2011 (UTC)
"Primarily" is not correct. The primary reason is highly variable. There are certainly people who are faith (sola fide) or revelation (sola scriptura) driven but others have different views. One good example of logic and reason based conversion is Surprised by Joy by C. S. Lewis. It is not proper for us to limit the basis of religion for other people. Grantmidnight (talk) 12:52, 7 July 2011 (UTC)
I have not read that book, but the article on it states that Lewis places primary emphasis on Sehnsucht ('a German noun translated as "longing", "yearning" and "craving"') in his conversion. That bears little resemblance to "reason and empiricism". That religious people, like Lewis, employ reason as part of their apologetics in defence of their beliefs, does not imply that reason forms the basis of these beliefs. This is not "limit[ing] the basis of religion for other people", it is attempting to accurately describe religion, and how it differs from science. And the way the two of them approach "reason and empiricism" is clearly profoundly different. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 07:36, 8 July 2011 (UTC)

I do not think we are quite discussing what causes a person to convert, but specifically how "science" and "religion" pursue knowledge and judge the truthfulness of propositions. And this, bearing in mind that both are very loose terms; with religion capturing: buddhists who do not believe in god, or even "cultural" religions which reject most spiritual ideas, but also those who think their Holy book is the perfect word of God. I think "at times" is a perfectly neutral way of pointing out that these other values are sometimes held over reason and empiricism.

I feel like we should be discussing whether they are "often" valued primarily. Hrafn would seem to vote yes. My own vote would be "hmmm maybe, but mostly I would like to see some data, and in the meantime I am content with 'at times' ". We should also celebrate the success of agreeing on a fix for the original problem: the language no longer suggests that reason and empiricism completely belong to science.-Tesseract2(talk) 14:58, 7 July 2011 (UTC)

"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool." Isaiah 1:18 kjv When talking about the very center of conversion, salvation from sin, the text appeals to reason. One's feelings are not the focus. One may have feelings that come from conversion, but they are not the cause of it. Rather, it is logic and reason that form the basis for real conversion. Those people who got saved by some emotional experience are not following the counsel of God through Isaiah. There are pseudo-Christians out there, who don't really know what they think they believe. They are no different that anyone else who mindlessly and stupidly goes by "if it feels good, it must be right!" There is right and wrong, and it takes logic and reason, not emotions, to know what is what. AshforkAZ (talk) 04:53, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

Parallels in Method section is Biased?

The entire parallels in method section sites a single source - Ian Barbour's book - yet it is written in such a way as to suggest that it is an accepted parallel. I have read no one else that agrees with his conclusions (having read the source, I find them tenuous). If the section is to be included, it should either be clear that it all comes from one bias source (the point of Barbour's book is to prove they are the same methodology) or include a published counter argument or other source in agreement. Unfortunately, I do not have one at hand. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 68.49.250.87 (talk) 23:18, 25 August 2011 (UTC)

Agree -- Barbour's book cannot be cited as a source for widespread acceptance of Barbour & Polkinghorne's work. I'm therefore removing this claim. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 06:17, 26 August 2011 (UTC)

Public views Section

Greetings, I am a bit confused on the removals of the information higher education and post graduates. Perhaps I can get better explanations for this from other editors. These are not selective or counterintuitive as the references contain the relevant sections which note these points. Smith and Snell review multiple studies on higher education and religiosity in the US the pages in the reference discuss reasons why college students from 1990 onwards are slightly more religious than people who do not go to college. Other references in the article do show that indeed since most people in America do not see conflict and since college undergraduates in the social and natural sciences don't have this view either, then, why would anyone assume that higher education reduces religiosity necessarily? ARIS data on post graduates does show that they resemble the religious demographics of the general population. Barry Kosmin's report on post-grads even noted another reference which was removed (Norris and Inglehart). I am open to rewording to reach a consensus. I think they are indeed relevant to science and religion just like the section on scientists. What do you guys think?Ramos1990 (talk) 17:28, 16 July 2012 (UTC) Ramos1990 (talk) 17:17, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

I agree with your line of reasoning and feel the information should be inserted into the article once again. A while back, I similarly tried to balance this section with related studies but my edits were reverted. If other people continue to object to the restoration of material in this article, you could add it to the Religiosity and intelligence article or create a new Religion and education article, where you could place the information. I hope this helps. With regards, AnupamTalk 18:46, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

Hey Anupam, thanks for the support! I see where you are coming from. I also get a sense of where some of the editors are coming from. I think I will provide quotes in the refs and reintroduce the edits. I think this will give others a more clear picture of the claims in the research. I may also go to the pages you suggested and add some material. Ramos1990 (talk) 23:40, 16 July 2012 (UTC) I re-added them. They should be ok since I provided quotes.Ramos1990 (talk) 02:35, 17 July 2012 (UTC)