Science vs. Religion


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I was wondering if any Baha'i could tell me the Baha'i concept of science and religion going hand in hand, or if they could point me to a book that talks about it.

Excellent question... For centuries it seems there has been a struggle between science and religion but there is we Baha'is believe a way to resolve this to the benefit of both religion and science...

"Religion without science leads to superstition and science without religion tends to materialism."

- From the Baha'i Writings

So a balance should be achieved ... Science and religion need not be at odds. Religious people can appreciate science and scientific attitude can help in their lives.

A scientist with values and ethics is also beneficial and can be very important in preventing the science alone or so called pure science attitude that engaged in experiments on humans using nerve gas and extreme cold and exposure to radiation.

'Abdu'l-Bahá states:

"When religion, shorn of its superstitions, traditions and unintelligent dogmas, shows its conformity with science, then there will be a great unifying, cleansing force in the world, which will sweep before it all wars, disagreements, discords and struggles, and then will mankind be united in the power of the love of God."

A good overview of the Baha'i view:

Science and Religion
Hi, Seeker; good to have you with us! :)

At the outset, I would point out that the thread title, "Science vs. Religion," is most regrettable because in the Baha'i view, the two are NOT in contradiction, but rather dovetail very nicely!

Art already mentioned superstition and materialism as the result of using one without the other. The examples I generally give for these are "witch-burning" and "bigger and better nukes."

Science may be said to explain the "how" of things, whereas religion explains "Who" and "why." They thus address different, largely non-overlapping domains, but come together nicely to form a complete whole!

And as Art indicated, the quickest way to get ilnto trouble is to use either one without the other!

The Baha'i scriptures also say (sorry: I don't have the citation handy) that if a religious doctrine disagrees with established science, then that doctrine is simply wrong.

There is also this marvelous quote from 'Abdu'l-Baha in Some Answered Questions:

[E]ven in Europe it is admitted that religion is the opponent of science, and that science is the destroyer of the foundations of religion. While the religion of God is the promoter of truth, the founder of science and knowledge, it is full of goodwill for learned men; it is the civilizer of mankind, the discoverer of the secrets of nature, and the enlightener of the horizons of the world. Consequently, how can it be said to oppose knowledge? God forbid! Nay, for God, knowledge is the most glorious gift of man and the most noble of human perfections. To oppose knowledge is ignorant, and he who detests knowledge and science is not a man, but rather an animal without intelligence. For knowledge is light, life, felicity, perfection, beauty and the means of approaching the Threshold of Unity. It is the honor and glory of the world of humanity, and the greatest bounty of God. Knowledge is identical with guidance, and ignorance is real error.
Happy are those who spend their days in gaining knowledge, in discovering the secrets of nature, and in penetrating the subtleties of pure truth! Woe to those who are contented with ignorance, whose hearts are gladdened by thoughtless imitation, who have fallen into the lowest depths of ignorance and foolishness, and who have wasted their lives!
--(page 137)

I hope this helps.

Best, :)

From talking with Baha'is it seems that the Baha'i Faith generally agrees with science rather well until you discuss things like evolutionary anthropology, neurotheology or transpersonal psychology. All of these are sciences that would have been unknown to The Bab, Baha'u'llah or Abdul Baha thus their revelation was not integrated with them. Unfortunately all of these sciences are either directly or indirectly related to the heart of what religion and thus the Baha'i Faith are all about.
Dyno, hi!

I'm afraid you'll have to be more specific as to where you apparently perceive problems.

Personally, I'm not aware of any, and I suspect Baha'i experts in these fields would probably agree!

As to evolution, there's an entire book available on the topic, Evolution and Baha’i Belief, to which I refer you.

There’s also an online article by the same author that you can view here:

Is the Bahá'í view of evolution compatible with modern science?

So I refer you to these for more details.

Good hunting, and regards,

Psychological and psychiatric sciences are still though respected by Baha'is and regarded as legitimate therapies .... One very good reason we have the Universal House of Justice today is to provide guidance to the Baha'is in those areas not covered by the Baha'i Writings themselves and in the guidance thus far provided it is true that a competent physician's recommendations are to be respected.

- Art