Thursday, January 29, 2009

Science and Religion Can't Be Reconciled

I consider myself strong in my faith.

As a Catholic, I believe in God, the father almighty, creator of heaven and earth... and in Jesus Christ his only son our lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilot, was crucified died and was buried...

... I believe in the catholic church, the communion of saints, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting.

I think it's important hear those of dissenting views, to help understand myself their positions, and to correct any misconceptions the they have.

Conversions are in God's hands. I'm only his instrument.

I say all this because I'd like to introduce an article presenting an opposing view to the believer.

I'm posting it for your review and hopefully, some feedback.

So, tell me what your thoughts are after you read it. Opposing or promoting views are all welcome.

Just tell me what you think.

Seeing and Believing: The never-ending attempt to reconcile science and religion, and why it is doomed to fail. (h/t: LGF)

Charles Darwin was born on February 12, 1809--the same day as Abraham Lincoln--and published his magnum opus, On the Origin of Species, fifty years later. Every half century, then, a Darwin Year comes around: an occasion to honor his theory of evolution by natural selection, which is surely the most important concept in biology, and perhaps the most revolutionary scientific idea in history. 2009 is such a year, and we biologists are preparing to fan out across the land, giving talks and attending a multitude of DarwinFests. The melancholy part is that we will be speaking more to other scientists than to the American public. For in this country, Darwin is a man of low repute. The ideas that made Darwin's theory so revolutionary are precisely the ones that repel much of religious America, for they imply that, far from having a divinely scripted role in the drama of life, our species is the accidental and contingent result of a purely natural process.

And so the culture wars continue between science and religion. On one side we have a scientific establishment and a court system determined to let children learn evolution rather than religious mythology, and on the other side the many Americans who passionately resist those efforts. It is a depressing fact that while 74 percent of Americans believe that angels exist, only 25 percent accept that we evolved from apelike ancestors. Just one in eight of us think that evolution should be taught in the biology classroom without including a creationist alternative. Among thirty-four Western countries surveyed for the acceptance of evolution, the United States ranked a dismal thirty-third, just above Turkey. Throughout our country, school boards are trying to water down the teaching of evolution or sneak creationism in beside it. And the opponents of Darwinism are not limited to snake-handlers from the Bible Belt; they include some people you know. As Karl Giberson notes in Saving Darwin, "Most people in America have a neighbor who thinks the Earth is ten thousand years old."

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