Can belief in a higher power be combined with Evolution

Discussion in 'Belief and Spirituality' started by keithzworld, Feb 18, 2011.

  1. Lunitik

    Lunitik Interfaith Forums

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    But then it ceases to be a theory...

    It is a small difference, but an important one in the context of the current discussion.
     
  2. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea Well-Known Member

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    I'm fully in agreement and don't know why you would think otherwise.
     
  3. Lunitik

    Lunitik Interfaith Forums

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    I am not really disagreeing, merely clarifying.

    A theory cannot be proven because once it is proven it is no longer a theory, it is now a law. I am not trying to prove you wrong, it is just that in such circles there is clear distinction between phases.

    It seems you are trying to defend, and yet realize there isn't really anything to defend because we agree. We do, I am simply making the separation that all pursuits of mind dictate - and science is exactly an objective pursuit of mind, where psychology is a subjective pursuit of mind. In both situations, there is a means and an end, there are distinct groupings and procedures.

    Neither can arrive at truth because they have not realized a means can be its own end. Only the artistic mind can realize this - the poetic mind - but there is little of this on these forums. The Quran, the Gita, Rumi, always (whether you agree with what is said or not) the most beautiful poetry comes from religiousness. For me, we must have created the separation in our brains between analytic and creative - left and right hemisphere - by these types of pursuits. I hope one day man will do away with this separation, but today we are just creating more and more hostility between the two.

    If we are to talk about science, we should discuss it scientifically - if for no other reason than to see how disgusting it is as a pursuit. Perhaps it will show how futile scientific exploration into religion really is.
     
  4. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea Well-Known Member

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    Hehe, this is our most pointless discussion yet, we have been in agreement since the first point. The reason I probe is that I don't understand why you think I wouldn't be in agree with you to start with.

    Look, it started with IG saying you can't prove a theory and radarmark confirmed this. If they where saying the same thing as Lunitik, that a theory can be proven but is thus transformed into a law, I follow their reasoning. But it it not as I understood them the first time I read it.
     
  5. IowaGuy

    IowaGuy Hunter-Gatherer

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    So we should have just accepted the 17th century Christian view that the sun revolved around the earth, which was based on the bible?

    And we should just accept the Adam/Eve story of creation as religious fact, or the more palatable "Intelligent Design", and allow it to be taught in our public schools? No "scientific exploration into religion" is merited?

    And for all the "psychics" that are on every street corner of Los Angeles, we should just trust what they say if they claim it's backed by their religion?

    There are many people who believe as you do, that scientific exploration into religion is futile. In fact I know of two that are running for President right now :)
     
  6. luecy7

    luecy7 New Member

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    Which came first: the theory, or the law? :D
     
  7. Lunitik

    Lunitik Interfaith Forums

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    This is the problem, of course: a theory can be accepted as a law when it is not so. I say that a new religion needs to be set into motion, one that combines objective and subjective perspectives - that doesn't choose one over the other. For me, Osho has began this plight, but with him everyone is apposed.

    Everything should be confirmed through investigation, but the way the scientists do this is gross. They make absolute declarations based on their own findings, but their very methods cannot allow the truth to be revealed.

    There has to be another dimension, a more playful discovery.
     
  8. Lunitik

    Lunitik Interfaith Forums

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    Neither, the actuality came first.

    Observations then theorized about what is happening, and when they were decided that this is so, it became a law. Still, nothing has ever happened to the actuality, it just laughs at our stupidity.
     
  9. IowaGuy

    IowaGuy Hunter-Gatherer

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    Hi Cup, I think the confusion is just semantics, a word game. Words in scientific context mean something different than those same words in everyday language.

    For example, in everyday language, the word "theory" is like a hunch. "I have a theory why my mother-in-law doesn't want me in the kitchen."

    But a scientific theory is not a hunch. Nor a hypothesis. Nor a "law in waiting." Laws are not better than theories, and vice versa. They are just words to describe different aspects of science.

    I wouldn't personally lose any sleep over it. But if you want to learn more about the technical differences and how science uses the terms, here are a couple of good links:

    Scientific Laws and Theories

    http://undsci.berkeley.edu/article/0_0_0/howscienceworks_19

    Evolution as theory and fact - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    (good comparison between evolutionary theory and the theory of gravity)

     
  10. radarmark

    radarmark Quaker-in-the-Making

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    I second IG. Adding that I, for one, do not use the terms in other than a scientific context (I am old), and would never even think about using them in the "fuzzy" way that Lunitik is.

    For a little background see me posts so far on "science of the web". If they are confusing you can always comment or PM.

    Pax et amore omnia vincunt, radarmark
     
  11. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea Well-Known Member

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    I suspect this is going to change my view on a lot of things. It's currently 3 am here so I'll have to save the brainy stuff till tomorrow, thanks, both of you, for pointing this out!
    Good night
     
  12. luecy7

    luecy7 New Member

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    Who decided the law of gravity? Who defined the gravitational constant? Newton? It seems to me, the law of gravity existed before every man, including Newton. At least, that is what scientists tell me.
     
  13. radarmark

    radarmark Quaker-in-the-Making

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    Okay, gravity existed from the first moment we know of. Newton's gravitational constant, used in what is called "the law of gravity" in the seventeenth century. iIt did a pretty good job of explaining gravity and making predictions. By the twentieth century there were a couple of "anomalies" (exceptions to the "law of gravity") were well-known and little understood of explainable. Then Einstein totally revised the scientific explanation of gravity with the special and general theories of relativity. It expalins the anomalies and extended both the explanation and prediction to realms of the universe Newton nevr dreamed of (E equals mc squared).

    The key here is what we understand and know so we can understand the actualities and observations. As IG said, theory=law=hypothesis as far as scientists are concerned.

    Pax et amore omnia vincumt. Radarmark
     
  14. Lunitik

    Lunitik Interfaith Forums

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    The actuality existed before the word "gravity", no one decided it, it cannot be decided. Only whether the observation is accurate can be decided, and even then it doesn't mean it is totally correct as radarmark just pointed out...

    Have these evolutions to the theory of gravity changed anything at all about the actuality of what is being described? No, not at all, what we have called gravity simply goes on with its nature.
     
  15. luecy7

    luecy7 New Member

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    Yes, I believe the actuality is that the law of gravity existed before Newton measured and declared it.
     
  16. Lunitik

    Lunitik Interfaith Forums

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    The point I am making is that language is utterly irrelevant, it was not this sequence of letters, it simply was. Nature exists without our projections like "this is gravity", it is utterly unaffected by whatever noise we release from the mouth in its direction. I say the whole pursuit of science is ugly for a simple reason: it strengthens mind, and thus creates a less beautiful planet.

    What have we gained from calling it "gravity"? Before, we might have played with it, seen how things fall or the like but now we feel we understand it so we pay it no attention. This goes on happening, the more we feel we know our world, the less joy we gain from it. This is not a means and end relationship, both are one, we just miss so much joy by perceiving with mind.
     
  17. radarmark

    radarmark Quaker-in-the-Making

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    This is a little technical, so I ask your forgiveness ahead of time.

    The notion that the physical exists "out there" without our interactions is a rather quaint Newtonian projection. If physics since 1905 have taught us anyhting it is that what we see or measure is a function of how we prepare the experiment. To put it simply (G!d bless Johnny Wheeler) without a consciousnes to act on it the universe would not be what it is. Now I am not saying my consciousness or human consciousness, but some form of non-material intervention.
    [​IMG]
    Pax et amore omnia vincunt. Radarmark
     
  18. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea Well-Known Member

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    I've been reading some of the links IG posted and I feel that I have entered a level of science where it is very obvious that it is the world described by humans, and thus flawed.
    It's a lot more neat in school, with simple equations that explain the world around us with a clear distinction between laws and theories. And I'm not as comfortable on this new level, simply because of the human factor.

    It reminds me of rants I had a few years back when I argued on the internet. I was stuck between the camps of religion and science and defended them both when either was attacked by the other. To me, religion and science explain the world from the same point but go in different directions, and it annoyed (annoys) me endlessly when the two sides argue with their own language being unable to understand what the other is even saying. They may not even be trying.
    But they do have so much in common, being human. To me, both sides accept what is written in their holy texts, to atheists it is books on physics and biology, but they will of course never admit this. Yes, science gives each and every person the ability to actually understand what is being said in these books and the people can follow the reasoning from beginning to end and come to their own conclusions. But people are people and most of us lack either intellect or education. So we trust in the majority or their priest...sorry, teacher!

    I have always wondered if I was more natural science or social science and I'm beginning to think the latter. Social science is very comfortable being fuzzy but natural science wants to be ordered, but I don't feel it is.
     
  19. Lunitik

    Lunitik Interfaith Forums

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    This is why I go on saying all knowledge is borrowed, you do not really know it, you have simply memorized and claimed it as your own. Both science and religion should be understood experientially, only then does it become a true knowing.

    You are perfectly correct, it why old Western religions are referred to under the banner of philosophy, and science majors earn a philosophy degree even today. Current philosophy is really psychology, a study of mind through mind. 2500 years ago, Pythagoras warned against separating science and religion and he was very much correct in this. It is merely a look into the way things are from opposite directions: objective and subjective, outwardly and inwardly. Religion is really the science of the inner world, but today we go on analyzing behavior and processes of mind - psychology. By separating them, though, we have created a great trouble for man. Religion was too stubborn, it refused to permit anything which went against its scriptures, it created a conflict - we know instinctively that both have truths, but we have used both to reject the other, depending on our particular leanings.

    If both can come back together, if we can again pursue a world view of philosophy rather than concentrating on things from a particular perspective we would be in a much better situation.
     
  20. radarmark

    radarmark Quaker-in-the-Making

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    Let me be forward enough to suggest a way to address your concerns: Alfred North Whitehead's "Philosophy of Organism". Here are a couple of links about him:

    Whitehead - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Alfred North Whitehead (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

    Here is a link to his philosophy (very superficial level), known nowdays as "Process Philosophy":

    Process philosophy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    And here is a website I use a lot, the Center for Process Studies:

    The Center for Process Studies

    He went back to Plato and Heradotus and figured out how to (notionally) unify mind and matter (getting around the dualistic mistake Descartes made which we all live with) and "speculative philosophy" (or meta-physics, which used to address both science and religion, pre Newton-Leibnitz) with religion. His writing is very, very difficult (he was an abstract theoretical mathematician most of his life who could and did publish a separate Theory of Relativity). But there are plenty of websites and paperbacks that break down his thoughts into understandable chunks.

    Pax et amore omnia vincunt. Radarmark
     

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