I shifted focus to sciences recently, and have been reading Douglas Futuyma’s Evolution. While reading the book, I could relate to the famous three-stage model of Comte.
Auguste Comte believed that there were three-stages of societal development. The first is the theological stage, where humans try to answer and relate every unknown to God. God is the central force and usually a single rigid idea.
The second is the metaphysical stage: a transitional phase. Although a strong belief in God, prescientific conjectures find place.
The third is the positive/scientific stage where abstract notions do not find a place. There is an acceptance that every question cannot be answered and solutions have to be derived on the basis of experimentation and verification.
Comte believed that math and natural sciences quickly moved from the theological stage to the positive stage, and hence is more verifiable and based on rock-solid evidence.
However, with the social sciences which is highly intertwined with human lives, he believed, humans intellectually live in these three different stages, and this is a reason for political turmoil.
I’ve interacted with people from different religions - Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism. A common assertion I’ve seen is the claim to ultimate truth. There are extremely simplified answers and abstract claims to the increasingly complex nature of problems humans face.
Also, there are two common and general types of believers. The first who view science as against religion, and the second who believe in accommodating science with religious beliefs and claims (both cases show a clear mismatch in intellectual stages). Now, considering Comte’s model, evolution, and the general observations of religious extremism and the political violence that they’ve caused globally - Is religion a hindrance to human development and science? Is it time for an intellectual movement from theology to science (how do you do it)?
Note: Sorry, if I’ve been long and confusing.