Mental gymnastics is not the special burden of religious believers. It's part and parcel of the human believing condition. I suggest a policy of humility and tolerance with respect to those who disagree with us, not arrogance and bullying.
I think the big division between science and spirituality could be narrowed by a clearer definition of our words. Our vocabulary doesn't serve us well. Don't let the foibles of our vocabulary prevent you from respecting the beliefs of others as long as they respect and honor yours.
Both climate crisis denial and the anti-vaccination movement follow the same trend of dismissing science. But the phenomenon of religious and political science denial extends far beyond the obvious examples. It can get much worse, and much uglier.
In a recent New York Times op-ed, evolutionary biologist David Barash recounts telling the undergraduates in his animal behavior class that evolutionary science has "demolished two previously potent pillars of religious faith and undermined belief in an omnipotent and omni-benevolent God." Barash's claims of demolition are more "op" than "ed," I'm afraid.
The newest frontier of science is the study of consciousness, for which a materialistic bias is particularly prejudicial.
The debate about whether science and religion are adversaries often misses the fact that many people are comfortable both with their faith and the idea God plays a role in the universe.
The archbishop of Canterbury recently admitted that he sometimes has doubts about God. Thank God! We could only wish that more religious leaders had some doubts and expressed them honestly.
Conventional brain science has no explanation. It has long assumed that as the brain goes, so goes the mind; for the brain is what gives rise to the mind. The return of mental clarity and memory in a brain ravaged by Alzheimer's is not supposed to happen. Yet it does in some cases.
Climate justice, human rights, religion, and indigenous spirituality are all entwined and people are taking action in an unprecedented way this weekend.
Climate scientists have assumed that the overwhelming weight of evidence would carry the day. It hasn't. Indeed, studies show that, when individuals are challenged with facts contrary to their core beliefs, those beliefs temporarily harden.
Scientifically-minded religious believers contend that a careful reading of the Book of Scripture teaches that God is the creator of the heavens and the earth. Is that how God did it? I have no idea. But it's possible that God did it this way.
Perhaps at the heart of this question are really two deeper questions. First, are humans special and unique, above and beyond other animals? Second, is the specialness or unique nature due to a God? In other words, is there a God?
For most of the 20th century, lucid dreaming received almost no attention from mainstream psychologists. Most researchers seemed to think it was impo...
I'd welcome an alien in my church pew any Sunday, as an astrobiologist who is also a pastor. However, none have shown up as yet.
Given a forced choice between physics and faith, then, some people choose physics and some people choose faith. I think this lose-lose feeling is rooted in a culturally influential but historically false conception of the relationship between science and religion as one of perpetual warfare.
Greater comfort, I think, is to be found in the realization that infinity is as problematic for science as it is for religion. Much as an infinitely perfect God leads to logical clashes with reality, an infinite multiverse bedevils attempts to apply tools such as probabilities to our understanding of the world.