How about science sometimes directly contradicts religion and asserts it as fact without having any real proof. Like the Big Bang and evolution, side note it’s hilarious that my iPhone autocorrects Big Bang to caps.
Hi, Scbuck - and welcome to the forum. The issue you raise is what draws so many here to discuss these very kinds of things. So feel free to peruse the various threads where you can share with and listen to others who have given much thought to these perceptions about science and faith. Many of us here have a lot of direct (and current) experience with the convictions you share, many of us having held those same convictions ourselves at various points.
If you want to react to something specific that somebody has written, just select the portion of interest and click the grey ‘quote’ popup. That inserts their quote into your post - or even opens up a reply post to them if one isn’t open already. Again - welcome, and we hope to get to know you better!
[And I will hasten to make an added edit here, sbuck, (by clicking the pencil underneath - you can edit any of your own posts that way) to ask you directly: If we can presume that you are a member of some religious community or church, what is it that “drives this culture of skepticism for you and possibly your community?” You’ve said that you see no ‘real proof’ for the BIG BANG or for evolution. Is that the main reason you maintain skepticism toward those things? Would a presentation of convincing evidence make a difference to you or your community, or is there something else?]
The findings of science certainly do contradict some religious beliefs on occasion. But science isn’t really in the business of asserting anything as fact. In many cases there will be wide agreement on what theory fits best. An example where I do not believe there is currently great agreement regards whether that big bang is a singular or plural event, but as a non-scientist I have no idea which is in the majority. But evolution is a well established, widely accepted theory.
If you believe the biblical account given in Genesis was intended as a scientific treatise then obviously there is a conflict. But that isn’t what all Christians believe. From reading here I’ve become convinced that Genesis was a message intended for people living long ago couched in terms they could understand. To read it as a scientific explanation when no one living then understood what that was seems questionable.
Well personally I have spent an extensive amount of time researching both sides of these issues. I used to be more on the evolution side but it was mostly because that’s what I was taught in school and at the time I accepted what I was taught as fact. Now that I am older I have learned not to accept anything out of hand as fact even if it is accepted by the scientific community.
In my research applying critical thinking and listening to evolution and creation debates and trying to gather as much data as I can from both sides. I have found that creation scientists make a more compelling case. Just one example is the accepted scientific consensus that the soil layers and fossil records show the earth to be many millions of years old. Yet there are multiple examples of trees standing straight up the the soil layers which would indicate those layers to have happened swiftly such as through a flood. In addition there are many examples of current species including human artifacts found at the same depth as the alleged millions of years old dinosaurs. I believe claiming evolution and the old age of the earth to be facts is absurd.
I am not trying to say I am anti science in fact the most compelling evidence against these scientific consensus’ is contrary scientific examination. There is no need to just accept what is in the Bible are facts it is fairly evident at least to me that it is. I think it is a dangerous practice to teach our children these things in school when it is clear a lot of leaps and assumptions are made. Why convince children of things contrary to the word of God when it is not necessarily proven science. I think it is fine to teach these things as theories but it is quite often stated as fact which is misleading to children who are not generally taught to think critically.
Respectfully either this world/ universe was created or it happened by coincidence. I don’t know of an alternative. In school text books are many examples of evolution the fossil record, carbon dating etc. being taught as fact or true scientific method.
I believe as Nikola Tesla did. Today’s scientists have substituted mathematics for experiments, and they wander off through equation after equation, and eventually build a structure which has no relation to reality.
It’s good to hear this reminder that many religious skeptics don’t characterize themselves as anti-science in general, but just trying to discriminate between what they see as good science and bad science. So do you insist and persist, then, in maintaining that you applied your critical thinking and research in impartial ways to resolve this to your satisfaction? Because many here will be skeptical of your claim to have done that - as they can point to problems with [and highly compelling answers for] each of the problems you brought up.
I’m sure you realize that when you introduce yourself as you have here, you will immediately become “a project” or someone with challenges to be answered. And indeed you can look up many things that have already been said in response to challenges such as polystrate fossils or flood geology, or carbon dating. There are a lot of other Christians who have also researched the evidence and arrived at very different conclusions than you express. So I’m sure you can understand skepticism here too.
I heartily agree with you that teaching critical thinking is very important and undoubtedly is not done well enough in most schools. But I also push back a bit when you characterize today’s scientists and their modeling work as having “no relation to reality.” While it may be true that there is much theoretical and scientific modeling that happens with math and on computers, it is not true to say that such work can enjoy sustained prestige or widespread acceptance if it does not match reality in some way or form. Reality is and remains the touchstone of the empirical sciences.
Feel free to pursue any of these issues in new threads if you care to make them, or existing threads that may already be addressing them.
I would love to see the source for this claim. If true it would be world shaking news.
I moved this to separate topic since it was getting pretty tangential to the OP.
That floods and avalanches have happened in the past and left evidence is not disputed. A few trees buried in a flood does not really warrant the conclusion “global flood that destroyed all life on earth just like a literal interpretation of the Genesis account says.”
Well that quote was from Nikola Tesla arguably one of the greatest scientific minds of all time. Einstein was once asked what it was like to be the smartest person on the planet and he replied I don’t know you’ll have to ask Nikola Tesla. The point is that experimental science is repeatable and demonstrated. Theoretical science is just that no matter how much of a consensus there is.
I was as impartial as a human can be, I looked at both sides in depth and was persuaded away from my origin beliefs. I watched debates read countless info from both sides and found creation science much more convincing.
Just a question here. You say that you have been applying “critical thinking” – but how well do you understand the reasoning behind the respective claims on different sides of the debate?
A lot of the arguments rely heavily on measurement and mathematics. Arguments on one side can sound pretty convincing when they only take a qualitative, “that-looks-about-right” or “common sense” approach, only to be blown to pieces when people actually take samples back to the lab and measure things. So before you come to any conclusions about which side sounds convincing, you need to have a reasonable mathematical background and understand the technical details of how measurement works (for example, the concept of error bars). How well do you understand subjects such as these?
I’ve found that as well – young-earth arguments tend to be heavy on rhetoric, and end up looking like a lawyer appealing to the jury (like Johnson’s “Darwin on Trial.”). Many laypeople don’t even realize that that’s not how science works.
So, do you think that scientists like me are stupid? Or do you think we are possessed by evil spirits, or perhaps given over to madness by a god? My curiosity about the world and how it works is matched only by my curiosity about how a person can conclude that millions of scientists can be so easily fooled.*
*Actually, having watched how Christianity works on human minds, I have some solid hypotheses about how this happens.
Hi @Scbuck, welcome to our corner of the Internet. I look forward to reading you future contributions to the broad mix of conversation that happen here.
On the surface your point above looks almost unassailable until one realises that many of what we might call ‘repeatable’ theories existed as theoretical theories for many years before they were proven to be true. Examples include geocentrism, black holes, the internal structure of Atoms, the higgs-boson, the existence of galaxies, etc.
So I’ll grant you that simply because theory seems to fit reality doesn’t make it true, but neither does it necessarily make is false either since it may be proven true empirically at a later date.
Moreover, as I have pointed out on another thread these arguments (empirical science vs theoretical science) can be used to sink huge sections of YEC argumentation too - much of which is theoretical and impossible to prove.
Since then we are both working from theoretical models, the questions is not ‘which of us is being empirical?’ but ‘which of our models makes most sense of the evidence provide in God’s word and God’s world?’
No I don’t think all scientists are stupid or demon possessed. I’m pretty sure you are the first one to say that not me. I do however believe there have been some prominent scientists in the past who were making “facts” match up with their agenda. I am not relying on uneducated pastors to refute evolution. I am listening to arguments from scientists with real degrees just like yourself I assume. Are you saying creation science isn’t legitimate? If so I’m going to need some actual reasons. They are refuting science with geological discoveries and have credible scientific backgrounds. Do you realize a petrified bag of flower and a cowboy boot have been found? That is pure irrefutable evidence that the petrification process doesn’t take as long as science claims. So no if you were reading from literature that is presented as factual and it is actually incorrect that doesn’t make you stupid it makes the publisher and the scientists behind the research of questionable motives.
If you have some real data to present to me that is convincing I’m glad to listen and learn but if you’re going to just make presumptions about my conclusions. I’m not interested.
I did the same thing, except I found the opposite. When I investigated the YEC arguments, I typically found them to be misrepresenting the evidence or scientists and withholding important information. I read one book where the author used a secular paper as the basis of his argument, and he made claims about what the paper author said, but I read the paper and discovered the paper author said the exact opposite. Most people don’t bother to read the studies cited to see if those conclusions can really be made.
Now I’m curious to hear about the modern animals/human artifacts found in dinosaur strata. To my knowledge, the only ones claimed have turned out to be hoaxes. I’d expect some upright trees in sediments, as local floods and volcanoes have happened all over the earth at various times. YEC/global flood doesn’t explain stacked fossil forests with upright, in-place (not transported) stumps.
I just posted a lengthy response to another individual so I don’t want to go any further I do want to state to everyone here that I am interested in getting to the truth whatever that may be. So if anyone can actually educate me about why creation science is so wrong I’m ready to learn. I won’t be responding to anymore insinuations about my ability or inability to think critically or that I don’t understand the math. Tell me exactly what equations specifically I need to know to get to the truth.
Greetings and welcome. Is this what the reference is to?
Unfortunately, it’s misused for young earth.
Iron sharpens iron, Brother. Keep asking good questions. Thanks.
Please elaborate sir because that does not make sense.
I’m sorry. I am learning, too. Maybe I’m referring to another story. I have read a review of a story about a cowboy boot and fossilization that some folks claim proves that fossilization occurs rapidly. The link above (you can click on it to read it) reviews it and shows that it’s got some difficulties. I would be interested in what story you are referring to, and if the link I posted has any bearing on it.
I have learned a lot from this site regarding old earth, evolution, etc. I am a Christian, and do believe God used evolution to create life as it now is. However, that is not the most important thing in the world, is it? Revering God, the truth, and becoming more like his Son is what He wants us to do. So–if we do disagree, that’s fine; it’s to be hoped we mutually benefit each other. Blessings. Thanks.