User:Cla68/CC2 draft work page

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Legitimacy of this category[edit]

The cited source, republished in Kurtz, Paul (2003). Science and Religion. Buffalo: Prometheus Books. ISBN 1591020646. , uses "theistic science" in quotations, and clearly presents it as a non-mainstream view. It therefore offers no basis for the creation of this category. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 06:49, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

"Non-mainstream view" is an opinion on the validity of the topic, not its notability. Two different things. The source is reliable and does define what "theistic science" is, does it not? Cla68 (talk) 06:54, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Non-mainstream view is the clear characterisation, by the source you yourself cited, of "theistic science". Per clear policy, Wikipedia does not give equal validity to such viewpoints. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 07:04, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Who said anything about giving "equal validity" to the viewpoint? This is just a category for integrated religious/science theories. Cla68 (talk) 07:08, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Seems like a useful category to me, and is fairly well defined. Cla68 is giving good reasons why, and I'm not seeing very good reasons why not from Hrafn. I can think of several topics that would be a good fit, so it seems useful. Sχeptomaniacχαιρετε 07:19, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
WP:DUE (which is WP:GEVAL's parent section) explicitly states: "This applies not only to article text, but to images, wikilinks, external links, categories, and all other material as well." HrafnTalkStalk(P) 07:21, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
What's UNDUE about it? If these articles/topics are considered sufficiently notable for Wikipedia, why would a category that groups them together be UNDUE? Cla68 (talk) 07:34, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
What's undue about it is the idea it may give to a reader that there actually is such a thing a class of science that includes supernatural explanations for some things. The quoted reference is not a reliable source for this claim - only that the claim has been made, not the same thing at all. Give me something from a recognised science body that it recognises such a class of science and then you may have my attention. Otherwise enough of this nonsense. Lets list this category under CFD ASAP. - Nick Thorne talk 07:49, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Skeptical Inquirer, which is where the article originally came from, is listed in Infotrac under the "academic journal" category. Anyway, what do we care what the reader may or may not conclude from it? That's not our mission. Our mission is to provide what the sources are saying. Not all "pseudosciences" are theories that combine science and religion, are they? Therefore, this category provides a useful grouping of related articles that didn't exist before. Cla68 (talk) 08:01, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
This has already been explained to you multiple times Cla68 - there is a difference between a reliable source reporting that a claim has been made and a reliable source making a claim. The article to which you refer does the former, when only the latter would be useful to us. There can also never be a "theistic science" anyway. It is a logical self-contradiction as science is, by definition, the study of the natural world, and theism is, by definition, based on the supernatural. The two are mutually exclusive concepts.Farsight001 (talk) 08:07, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
I highly question the motive behind the creation of this category, which is to redefine science in order to give Intelligent Design an air of legitimacy, and to dilute the impact of the Psuedoscience category. This is inherently POV, and is not in accordance with any accepted defintions of science, which unanimously reject supernatural explanations. Fringe "science" is not science. To even imply otherwise would be disingenuous and misleading. Dominus Vobisdu (talk) 08:30, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

May I ask, which topics are described in the listed source as belonging to "theistic science"? We don't have an article about Theistic science - is it a notable concept or just a neologism?   Will Beback  talk  09:09, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

The cited source states (with apologies for any undetected OCR typos):

Most scholars in the "science and religion movement" would identify with the "accommodation and "engagement" schools, and though some are theologically conservative, very few of them are from biblical literalist Christian traditions. The mainstream science and religion conferences do not include creation science proponents such as Henry Morris and Duane Gish of the Institute for Creation Research. But even neo-creationists like Phillip Johnson and others in the "intelligent design" movement are absent from these conferences. These and other conservative Christians are found in a "parallel universe" such as the "Naturalism, Theism and the Scientific Enterprise" conference at the University of Texas-Austin in February 1997. They promote a very different kind of integration of religion and science called "theistic science," which thus far has been shunned by the mainstream science and religion movement. "Theistic science" is an effort to move science away from methodological materialism and allow in the occasional supernatural explanation especially for topics such as evolution that have theological implications (Scott 1998). In my opinion, it would be the supreme "science stopper."

HrafnTalkStalk(P) 09:47, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

[copy from Wikipedia:Fringe theories/Noticeboard] Although I worry about coining a term, "theistic science" may represent a real group of things. I recall a similar bunch of claims around "Islamic science" (aside from the science history of Muslim countries), mostly attempts to retcon religious beliefs into modern science, and attempts to rein in science that might threaten religion, but also some more ambitious philosophizing. If we could agree on the term, this might make a good subcategory for Category:Pseudoscience. I've boldly added Scientific foreknowledge in sacred texts to this category. / edg 12:20, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

[Response copied likewise] I'd personally classify Islamic science as a culturally-based thread of protoscience, rather than the 'get the supernatural back into science' effort that the term 'theistic science' (see also theistic realism) is being used to describe. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 12:29, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Additional sources[edit]

Well, let's see if there are any other sources:
So is ID the only branch of "theistic science"? Perhaps theistic science would be better discussed in an article than used a category.   Will Beback  talk  10:38, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
I'm not sure so far if all the sources I'm finding only use the phrase to refer to ID. Cla68 (talk) 10:40, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
The last source ["Science"] doesn't use the term in reference to ID. So, I think we have enough sources to start an article on the term and that it doesn't belong under the ID topic. Cla68 (talk) 10:45, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

(edit conflict)

  1. It is the American Scientific Affiliation, and the article is merely reporting J. P. Moreland's views, not validating them.
  2. NSCE is the organisation that Eugenie Scott, your original source, is head of -- and it uses the same skeptical quotation-marks around "theistic science"
  3. J. P. Moreland is part of the same "neo-creationists like Phillip Johnson and others in the 'intelligent design' movement" that Scott reported upon in the original citation -- and as he's neither a scientist nor a philosopher of science, he is hardly a WP:RS on this subject -- whether published or not.
  4. Robert T. Pennock is reporting Phillip E. Johnson's (yes the same one as mentioned by name by Scott) views, not endorsing them (far from it).
  5. Same Eugenie Scott, same skeptical quotation-marks
  6. does not appear to exist.
  7. Muslim and Scientist: An Interview with Center Advisor Shiva Khalili: states "We don’t have theistic scientific theories" -- so why are you creating a category for what doesn't exist?

So what does all this demonstrate: that a tiny minority of, generally irrelevantly-qualified, academics subscribe to the WP:FRINGE view of 'Theistic Science'. There is no reason why we should violate WP:DUE by creating a category to reflect this timy minority view. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 10:50, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

I take it you don't believe there is sufficent sourcing to start an article on theistic science? I think there is, because it appears to be a phrase used for both Christian, Islamic, and Hindu theistic science practices (see below). Cla68 (talk) 10:57, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Cla68: you have been warned about and even disciplined for misusing sources before, and this is a blatant example. Both sources you provide use the term IN QUOTES. Neither source supports the use of the term.
The first source says: "Do I think that "theistic science" is the best choice for the name of that enterprise? No, but its proponents are free to call it whatever they wish." The author goes on to discuss why creation science cannot be properly called a natural science, because it is a form of philosophy.
The second source states specifically that "theistic science" is a term used by ID proponents to redefine science in order to deceive the public into believing that ID has some sort of legitimacy and acceptance among scientists.
For God's sake, instead of continuing this pointless battleground activity that you are engage in, READ THE POLICY ON RELIABLE SOURCES CAREFULLY. You truly have no clue about what it means, as countless editors have told you time and time again. Or worse, you are abusing the policy. The fact that you were disciplined for this same behaviour and even topic-banned only three months ago and STILL persist despite further admonition and instruction makes me seriously doubt your abilty to contribute anything of worth to the article in intelligent design and others related to it.
Again, read the policies CAREFULLY before you write. Then read the sources themselves CAREFULLY. The speed at which you post and the egregious misinterpretations you make indicate that you do not do this. And, for God's sake, take the time to read and UNDERSTAND other editors' posts before you reply.
Do this for your own sake, because the way things are going, it sure looks like you are going to be blocked again for the same reasons as before. Dominus Vobisdu (talk) 11:01, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Please don't threaten and resort to personal attacks. All I'm doing is presenting sources that may or may not support keeping this category. We can discuss the merits of without personalizing the discussion. If you disagree that the sources support the notability or relevance of the term, just say so. Attacking me makes it look like you're resorting to trying to shout me down, which I'm sure is not your intention, right? Cla68 (talk) 11:04, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
My intention is to get you to read the policy and adhere by it so that, if you have anything to contribute to the article in question, you can do so in a constructive manner.
It was uncivil of you to accuse me of personally attacking and threatening you, which I did not in any way. You might want to re-read that policy, too. Dominus Vobisdu (talk) 11:17, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

"You truly have no clue about what it means, as countless editors have told you time and time again. Or worse, you are abusing the policy. The fact that you were disciplined for this same behaviour and even topic-banned only three months ago and STILL persist despite further admonition and instruction makes me seriously doubt your abilty to contribute anything of worth to the article in intelligent design and others related to it."

Then you implied that I could face a block. That's the first time I've ever been threatened with a block for engaging in a talk page content discussion. I thought I would never see it happen. I appreciate that. Anyway, I'l continue adding sources as I find them. Would you please help me out? Cla68 (talk) 11:22, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

To admonish you is not to threaten you. I chose my words VERY carefully to make that clear. Please, you are a great editor when it comes to miltary history and I value your work A LOT, especially your contributions to articles on the Pacific Theater. I would hate to see you blocked when that can be avoided by simply taking a break to catch up on policy and deliberate before you act. When I wrote "For your sake", I wrote out of genuine concern for you. Dominus Vobisdu (talk) 11:34, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
  • [1] Not a reliable source, but appears to use the term to refer to Hindu philosophy. Cla68 (talk) 11:08, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
  • Mehdi Golshani, "Theistic Science" in God for the Twenty First Century (USA: John Templeton Foundation, 2000). Author is an academic and a philosopher. Cla68 (talk) 11:18, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
  • And it says what exactly about the topic? In fact, can you provide any evidence that it's been published? HrafnTalkStalk(P) 11:25, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
  • Bhagavad Gita 1.1 Not a reliable source, but uses the description "theistic science" to refer to Hindu philosophy. Cla68 (talk) 11:28, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
  • "Not a reliable source" = not even remotely interested. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 11:30, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
  • Well, it shows that the phrase isn't only used in relation to ID. We could get through the long Google lists of possible sources faster if you and others would help out. Would you help? Cla68 (talk) 11:37, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
  • Why should I? This is a WP:DEADHORSE. (Oh, and include an "http://" in your links -- they don't work otherwise). HrafnTalkStalk(P) 11:44, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
  • [2] Academic paper uses the term in relation to Islam. Cla68 (talk) 11:37, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
  • This article simply cites another article with "theistic science" in its title. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 11:49, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
  • Islamic science already has its own article -- one that does not appear to support the existence of 'Theistic science theories'. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 12:14, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Cla68: I have no interest in your endless list of tangential-to-irrelevant 'sources'. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 11:49, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Article creation on this topic[edit]

May I point out, before anybody spends time creating an article on this topic, that it would be likely to be a WP:CFORK of Theistic realism, which already exists. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 11:08, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Not necessarily. There appears to be some evidence that the phrase may be used to describe Islamic and Hindu science philosophies. Cla68 (talk) 11:10, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
The non-overlapping, reliable sourcing appears to be vestigial. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 11:15, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Well: Mehdi Golshani, "Theistic Science" in God for the Twenty First Century (USA: John Templeton Foundation, 2000). I'll place this one in the list of sources above also. Cla68 (talk) 11:17, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
(Repeating my above comment) And it says what exactly about the topic? In fact, can you provide any evidence that it's been published? HrafnTalkStalk(P) 12:13, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Category vs article[edit]

It looks like there are sufficient sources to write an article about "Theistic science". However I see no discussion here about why we'd have a "Category:Theistic science". I gather this new term has only been used to describe two different topics, though not by the same authors. While interesting as a concept, it does not seem like a term that would be sought after by readers for navigation. Unless convincing arguments can be made for this category's utility, I suggest that we should focus our effort on the article and nominate the well-intentioned category for deletion.   Will Beback  talk  12:10, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

As Hrafn pointed out in the previous section, this material is already covered in Theistic realism, and creating a new article would violate WP:CFORK. I agree, but suggest that "Theistic science" be added as a redirect to "Theistic realism". Any new material can be added there. I agree that the category be nominated for deletion.Dominus Vobisdu (talk) 12:16, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
"Theistic realism" looks like it has plenty of room to grow.   Will Beback  talk  12:24, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Done. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 12:22, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
The sourcing does appear to show that the ID article belongs in this category until and if the cateogry is deleted. Cla68 (talk) 12:34, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Really? Which source says that ID is a "Theistic science theory"? The claim would appear to be WP:SYNTH. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 12:40, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

I've read everything on this page up 'til now. Here are a few notes:

  1. A category that contains only one article is useless as a navigation feature, which is the entire point of categories. There appears to be minimal evidence regarding use (more than superficially) of the term "theistic science" relating to anything other than ID.
  2. A small category that lacks an article to explain the term is similarly useless. If it's not a notable enough concept to have its own article, doubtful it's notable enough to be a reasonable category.
  3. An article on the intellectual gymnastics employed to give "theistic science" its dubious veneer of legitimacy, and the marketing campaigns associated with this, does seem feasible; it might work best as a section of the Theistic realism article given their their inter-relationship, but I can imagine a standalone article may work.
  4. It does not appear to have been demonstrated that the descriptor "Theistic science theory" exists in any real sense...Certainly the bulk of reliable sources seem to indicate that the attempted use of the terms "science" or "theory" are erroneous at best, and cynical appropriations to gain the trappings of legitimate academic discourse at worst. It would be poor form for Wikipedia to lead the way in the use of this term based on flimsy sourcing, particularly given the fundamentally contradictory nature of the term "theistic science theory".

Based on the information presently available, I don't see this cat being useful or encyclopedic. The sources presented on this talk page likely support an article on the topic. — Scientizzle 15:44, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

That would arguably be a POV fork. Kevin Baastalk 17:34, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
It would only be a POV fork if written that way. Cla68 has produced a number of sources that discuss the term "theistic science" (and there are more here and here) and its been pretty well established here that that term describes a particular strategy of the ID movement, closely related to Theistic realism. Thus, whether as a component of the Theistic realism article or in a standalone article, there is possibly enough information available to flesh out a description of the topic and what proponents and opponents of "theistic science" view as its strengths and weaknesses. Given that many of the reliable sources are rightfully dismissive of the topic, I think an article or portion of an article can possibly be written well within WP:DUE. Of these two options, I'm leaning towards keeping the topic a subsection of Theistic realism due to their extreme inter-relationship. — Scientizzle 17:52, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
The same can be said for CMNS, even more so. Yet it was removed under the argument that it was a POV fork. One can only conclude from this that the same fate would await the proposed article. Kevin Baastalk 18:01, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
I think I'm missing your point. I don't quite see how the fate of Condensed matter nuclear science in 2007 relates to this...I was not involved in the cold fusion wars. What would a prospective Theistic science article be a POV fork of? Science? Evolution?
If the proposed article clearly stated, for example, that

"theistic science" is a concept promoted by ID proponents, as an outgrowth of Theistic realism and part of the Wedge strategy, and is regarded as pseudoscience by the broader scientific community

(assuming encyclopedic prose and citations), would it be an appropriate article? Would it be an appropriate subsection of Theistic realism? I can see how either would probably have some POV/UNDUE battles, but I don't see how the topic is necessarily WP:POVFORK...What am I missing? — Scientizzle 19:13, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
It would be a POV fork of Intelligent design, ofcourse. if you want to mention "theistic science" (oh, it is so painful to hear such an oxymoron come out of my mouth. i feel saying it has just made me stupider.) perhaps the wedge strategy or discovery institute article or something like that would be appropriate. there' certainly not enough material to make an article out of. it's just a made up phrase for pushing a political agenda. there's really nothing of substance behind it. there are no references to quote or anything like that, save the fringe crazies who made it up in the first place. so just put it in their article and be done with it. Kevin Baastalk 19:38, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Okay, I better understand your point. Thanks. I think there may be a place for this risible concept in the Theistic realism article, but I don't know that I care enough to write it. It certainly doesn't need to be a category. — Scientizzle 19:48, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
yeah, there's certainly far more material for a CMNS article than a theistic science article and the CMNS article didn't fly. so unless there's an egregious double standard somewhere, i'm guessing a "theistic science" article would have a very short half-life. Kevin Baastalk 20:37, 20 January 2011 (UTC)


"Theistic science" appears to have been a term used by Emmanuel Swedenborg to refer to something quite different - see here. There appear to still be some followers of Swedenborgian "theistic science". At present a quick glance at Google Books shows the term firmly entrenched in the creationism/ID world by way of a "Christian research program" of sorts that tells Christians to utilize "all that they know" about the world when investigating it scientifically, which includes all that they know religiously as Christians. Both of these uses are very specific, and neither would populate a category very well in my opinion. The current use might, though I know very little about the subject so I can't tell. Either way, "theory" ought to be completely out of the question, and non-Christian attempts to bridge religious beliefs and science do not belong either if you ask me.Griswaldo (talk) 14:30, 20 January 2011 (UTC)