Today’s Science Hates Faith

first_imgThere are individual scientists who believe in God, but their institutions ridicule any and all forms of “faith.”Don’t take our word for it. Here is how leading journals and scientific representatives characterize any view that does not emanate from the halls of Big Science.The reaction was predictable. Nature allowed Kathryn Pritchard, a member of the Archbishops’ Council for the Church of England, to express her view that “Religion and science can have a true dialogue.” It didn’t matter to readers that the dialogue is all one-way, as she describes it (i.e., scientists inform believers how and what to think). When letters to the editor came in, sparks flew. “With the rise of religious fundamentalism worldwide and the expansion of education in ‘faith’ schools, I consider that promoting the idea that religion and science have some kind of equivalence risks making societies more divisive and backward-looking,” one wrote, with other commenters chiming in. “Religion fulfills a basic human need, and so has evolved and survived through the ages despite all the progress science has made in explaining the world.” Too bad believers don’t understand how Charles Darwin rendered their religion an artifact of natural selection.Big Science can appear tolerant in one sense. As long as a formerly religious person shows a bona-fide conversion to Darwinism, then a few lingering feelings of nostalgia can be overlooked. Current Biology interviewed paleo-entomologist Michael Engel, who grew up in a religious home. Asked about his views on the “faith vs science debate” (note the wording), Engel replied,As the son of a minister, I’ve met people on diverse fronts in the discussion of faith and reason. This ‘debate’ has been paramount, and brought Kansas to the national stage, albeit not necessarily for flattering reasons. Politicians and fundamentalists on each extreme stir discord, each with their own ulterior agenda, and from this foment there appears a stark dichotomy and a war for the minds and souls of those residing between the poles. … Faith is not science, and so should not be covered in such curricula, just as the experimental method should not form the basis for theological inquiry. Both should be taught within their own context, and approached openly by those of either persuasion. Science is a communal effort which organizes and grows knowledge through evidentiary observation, testable explanations, and rational predictions. Scientific conclusions should not be rooted in faith. Faith is personal and while precepts may be shared, it remains fiercely individual and need not rely upon an impartial adjudication of evidence….His view is like the NOMA position advocated by the late evolutionary biologist Stephen Jay Gould: each view has its own place. Faith is OK for making you feel good in times of crisis, but don’t pretend it has anything to say about the real world. Materialists can tolerate that. Just admit that faith is a product of evolution.What really makes Big Science erupt with indignation is any request for a seat at the table of knowledge by a “religious” person who doubts Darwin. That is intolerable. And to really fan the flames, let that person suggest that schools should be free to question the adequacy of Darwinian evolution. Evolution News & Views shares one recent reaction when Darwinist Michael Zimmerman suspected (incorrectly) that the Bearded Buddha might be questioned in Texas science standards. “The creationists are back in Texas attacking high quality science education,” he says, and off he goes on his tirade against the bogeymen.A favorite tactic against “religion” is the Yoda complex. The materialist imagines himself on a higher plane of consciousness, looking down on the “people of faith,” using quasi-scientific theories to explain how the peons evolved their backward religious beliefs. In Science, Carter T. Butts portrays “those who reject evolutionary theory” as stuck in some kind of evolutionary backwater, tossed to and fro by conflicting thoughts between the facts they know from science and the faith in their religion. He uses mathematical models to explain their cognitive dissonance. Another, more subtle example was published in PLoS One, titled, “Collective Dynamics of Belief Evolution under Cognitive Coherence and Social Conformity.” The authors portray beliefs as things that evolve like any other natural phenomenon: e.g., “Each individual is endowed with a network of interacting beliefs that evolves through interaction with other individuals in a social network.” One can only wonder if they ever considered their own beliefs in this paper as reducible to such network interactions.In some circles, Big Science is softening its stance on religion. Pritchard’s article in Nature is one example. Materialists don’t want to position themselves as bigots. This is seen in PhysOrg‘s report about a study that found “Most British scientists … feel Richard Dawkins’ work misrepresents science.” It’s not that they feel Dawkins is wrong. They just don’t care for his combative style: insulting and deriding religious people on his crusade to promote atheism. That’s not politically expedient. You can hate religion; just don’t look hateful. “The best science communication does not begin with insults and arrogance,” says David Johnson, co-author of the study. “It encourages curiosity, open-mindedness and appreciation for” –what? religion? faith? philosophy? No; appreciation for “science.”And that’s the point. Science must dominate. Be nice to religious people, but don’t listen to them. Don’t take their views seriously. Communication is good, as along as it is one-way, from scientist to person of “faith.” Encourage religious people to convert to Darwinism. Maybe, with carrots instead of sticks, they will mend their ways.By now, regular readers know how to respond. They know it’s a false dichotomy to characterize individuals as “scientists” vs. “people of faith.” Everyone is a person of faith! Don’t let the atheists define the debate in those terms. Atheists have lots of faith – in fact, much more faith than average churchgoers. Not only do they have faith in their perceptions and powers of reason, they have faith that the universe is comprehensible. They have faith in induction (a questionable premise, philosophically). They have faith that the laws of logic are reliable. They have faith in folk psychology. They have faith that they can communicate with other members of Homo sapiens who will understand them, and whose responses indicate they have minds similar to their own.Atheists have so much faith, in fact, that it is tantamount to belief in magic. They believe that universes and living things can just pop into existence, showing exquisite fine-tuning, without mind or plan. Contrary to all reason and mathematical probability, they believe that atoms organized themselves into proteins, DNA and cells. And talk about cognitive dissonance: they deny anything beyond matter and energy, yet rely on immaterial realities of consciousness, intentionality, and reason. They have no reason to believe in reason if they are materialists. They depend on moral values like honesty that cannot be reduced to atoms and forces. They are supernaturalists in spite of themselves!So please, don’t let atheistic materialists set the table their way. They stole the table and the silverware from creationists. If they had to set their own table, they would be sitting on dirt, or hanging in the air. Everyone belongs to “people of faith,” but some believe in absurd, self-refuting faiths, like materialism. We need to reason with such people. Help lead them from absurd faith to reasonable faith. Like Tim Standish says at the end of Illustra’s new film Origin, “There is nothing magical about living things. I’m a scientist. I don’t really believe in magic. I believe in mechanisms and causes that are sufficient to achieve the phenomena that I observe.  Intelligence is sufficient. Intelligence is necessary. Therefore, intelligence is the conclusion that I come to.”(Visited 81 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Brand South Africa Partners with the Eastern Cape Department of Transport, Tourism, National Heritage Council and other stakeholders for second annual Eastern Cape SUV Challenge Tour 2019

first_imgBy Mduduzi MalingaBrand South Africa in collaboration with the Eastern Cape Department of Transport, Tourism and National Heritage Council hosted the second annual Eastern Cape SUV Challenge Tour from the 31 October – 3 November 2019. The challenge kicked off in Port Elizabeth, through Makhanda and Hamburg, making a stop at Mngqesha Great Place, then proceeded to East London, Butterworth, and Mqhekezweni and ended up at Coffee Bay.The event was part of a road-safety campaign, which not only connects communities, but is also an effective tool that creates awareness on profiling and promoting the Eastern Cape as a tourist and investment destination. Over 70 vehicles took part in the 500km expedition through the Eastern Cape, visiting towns, villages, schools and communities, relaying the message of road safety.This is in line with Brand South Africa’s mandate to promote road safety to empower rural communities to play their part through encouraging road to respect the rules and regulations on our roads.“The SUV challenge was instrumental in bringing together various stakeholders from government, universities and corporate South Africa, to affirm their commitment to road safety, as well as showcasing the heritage and tourism features of the province. These elements feed into the attractiveness of the South African Nation Brand. The tour illustrated the effectiveness of collaboration across sectors,’’ said Ms Toni Gumede, Strategic Relationship Manager for government at Brand South Africa.Event organizer, Siya Mbete said: “Our intention is to address the issue of road carnage but at the same time we want to assist learners to make informed choices as they go into universities and colleges.”Brand South Africa would like to thank Nissan South Africa, the Eastern Cape Department of Transport, Tourism and the National Heritage Council for playing their part in promoting the Nation Brand.last_img read more

Datia on high alert after patient’s death

first_imgDatia district health officials are on high alert after the death of a 52-year-old man due to persistent fever, and increase in fever cases in both government and private hospitals.According to an official, Imat Singh, a patient with high fever for the last five days, was admitted at the Datia District hospital on Monday morning. “On his arrival, the patient was administered an injection to bring his fever under control. In the evening, another injection was given to him. However, this time the patient collapsed,” Pradeep Upadhyay, Chief Medical and Health Officer, Datia district told The Hindu over telephone.The news of death of Imat Singh, a cousin of district Congress vice-president Sarnam Singh Rajput, spread like wildfire, said an official.In the meantime, the family members of the deceased alleged that he died due to administration of wrong injection. A few other patients undergoing treatment with symptoms of high fever and headache in the hospital panicked and fled, said Dr. Upadhyay.He said the condition of nine other patients with similar symptoms is under control. The CMHO has also dismissed allegations of wrong treatment. Dr. Upadhyay also denied media reports suggesting use of a single syringe to treat 25 patients by the hospital staff.last_img read more

J&K on edge as more forces move in

first_imgAirlines told to keep fares in check as 6,000 fly out of Srinagar Congress seeks PM’s statement in Parliament on J&K  In a rare step, a red alert was sounded for officials of the otherwise peaceful district of Kargil in the Ladakh region.A security alert was already sounded across J&K, including Jammu region’s Pir Panjal and Chenab valleys. All the leave of government employees and scheduled examinations were cancelled, an official said.Several colleges, factories and hostels were vacated and occupied by additional troops in the Valley. Hospitals were put on an emergency mode, said a senior official on the condition of anonymity. Dozens of mobile bullet proof bunkers were installed across the Valley.Meanwhile, special cell phones and satellite sets were distributed among the top officials, including police, in the State.Scores of political workers of the mainstream parties in south Kashmir were summoned to the police stations, a spokesman of J&K Peoples Movement said.Also Read An uneasy calm enveloped the Kashmir Valley on Sunday as additional security forces occupied civilian installations and police stations and were put on “standby mode.”National Conference (NC) president Dr. Farooq Abdullah chaired an all-party meeting in Srinagar and appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi “not to revoke J&K’s special status.”The security build-up took a final shape on Sunday, a top police official said on the condition of anonymity.Also Read  The J&K Cricket Association also evacuated cricketer Irfan Pathan, who coaches local players, and around 100 players to Jammu. Hundreds of students of the National Institute of Technology and the Institute of Hotel Management were provided buses to leave the valley, officials of these institutes said.Dr. Abdullah said all parties resolved to be united in “protecting the identity, autonomy and special rights of J&K.”“Modification or abrogation of Article 35A or Article 370 would be aggression against the people of J&K,” read the joint statement called ‘Gupkar Declaration.’The leaders unanimously sought an audience with the President and Prime Minister of India and the leaders of other political parties “to apprise them of the situation and make an appeal to safeguard legitimate interests of the people of the State with regard to guarantees given by the Constitution of our country.”Also Read Uncertainty grips Kashmir Valley  Dr. Abdullah also appealed to both India and Pakistan not to take any step that could aggravate the tension between the two countries.The all-party meet was attended by Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti, Peoples Conference leader Imran Ansari, Congress leader Taj Mohiuddin and J&K Peoples Movement chief Shah Faesal among others.Later, Ms. Mufti took out a candlelight march. “There is urgent need for the Centre to allay fears in the Valley and reach out to the people. J&K’s special identity is a matter of right and not privilege,” she said.last_img read more