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Science vs. Religion

Science and religion have pretty much always been in conflict. Both claim to be a means of determining knowledge and yet it is only through science that such a claim can be verified.

It really is amazingly ignorant of fundamentalist religious people to tell us through a computer that science is based on faith or that science is just another religion or that religion is better at determining truth. The fact is that ALL religious people use science EVERYDAY (even the Amish). Religion simply put is not a valid method for determining knowledge or truth. If it were, then religious people would not need to rely on science.

There are some people who claim that both science and religion focus on different types of knowledge (non-overlapping magisteria). This is their way of taking advantage of science while still believing in their ridiculous religious superstitions. This is of course bullshit. When religion makes claims about the world those claims can be tested using science. If they want to simply say “God” then they can escape the scrutiny of science, but the moment they say “God Exists” they are making a claim about the natural world and such claims can be tested through science. If any supernatural being acts or exists even in part in the natural world, then the claim is no longer non-overlapping.

For thousands of years, religion (Christianity) has done everything it could to stop people from using science because they wanted the monopoly on determining truth. This way they can make up any truth they wanted and there would be no way of testing their claims. But religion simply doesn’t have the predictive power and the ability to test and verify claims that science has. So religion realized they could not beat science. If you can’t beat them, claim that there is no conflict and continue to make stuff up.

Recently, Stephen Hawking recently stated, “There is a fundamental difference between religion, which is based on authority and science, which is based on observation and reason. Science will win because it works.” PZ Myers added to that quote by stating, that “science works, and every charlatan in every church dreams of hitching a ride on its record.”

Religion is losing this culture war.

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  • Chikkipop

    It’s fascinating the way so many atheists have swallowed the meme about not proselytizing. In fact, it has more than a little to do with atheists being so misunderstood.

    I have always welcomed visits from missionaries, even filming our discussions. You never know whose mind may be changed by something you say.

    The notion that holding what is arguably the most informed opinion is somehow cheapened by actually >>presenting it<< whenever the occasion allows is absurd, & self-defeating.

  • guerillasurgeon

    Some Australian comedians did it – went to Utah and tried to convert Mormons to atheism – and filmed the results. Quite funny, but often not that pretty.

  • Anthony Magnabosco

    I totally agree: atheists need to spread our message as well. I have been filming my encounters challenging street preachers here in San Antonio for the past few weeks – hit me up on Twitter @magnabosco if you would be interested in seeing the currently-private videos and I will send you a couple of links. Additionally, if you are really serious about this, I highly recommend Peter Boghossian’s new book ‘A Manual for Creating Atheists’ and the Street Epistemology Facebook page.

  • Anthony Magnabosco

    P.S. Did you intentionally mean to list Step 1 and 3, but no Step 2? Not sure if this was an oversight or a humorous point.

    • Ned Carter

      Step 2 is simply Step 1 leading to Step 3.

    • http://skepticink.com/dangeroustalk Dangerous Talk

      Underpants Gnome.

  • Keith Brian Johnson

    Staks–I linked to this in a chess.com discussion forum (I’m “MindWalk” there). As you know, I want people *not* to believe in God without good reason, and since I think I can show there is no good reason, I want people not to believe in God at all. I thought this was a rather good post on why we should proselytize nontheism.