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Science as a Religion

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posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 07:37 AM
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Dude. You f’n rock


Thank you for an excellent op.

a reply to: TheRedneck



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 08:04 AM
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I taught Research Methods in Univ and worked in an office with the Chem and Bio profs for about 4 years, and edited college textbooks.

I can tell you that no one should take "science" at face value, always question.

There is a real issue in academia, the good old friend system. You "like" my research and I'll "like" yours. It is very widespread and common. Peer review is suspect because of this common, very common practice. Good science you can trust is when people try to disprove what another scientist said. If several people can't disprove the original "study", then it is probably good. If several people can disprove the original "study" then it was probably not good.

Never take a first time study at face value, ever!

I see too many people blindly worshiping at the feet of an academically corrupt system of science. Maybe corrupt is too strong a word, more like lazy that ends up with the same result as corrupt.

When I taught Research Methods to Grad students I required them to bring in a peer reviewed research study every time we met and we dissected it as a group. In the vast majority of studies we found flaws, sometimes major flaws that could have influenced the outcome, especially in the "soft" sciences like SOC/PSY. The students by the end said it was very hard to find any study without some flaw that could have affected the outcome, they tried hard to find it so the study they brought in wasn't roundly torn to shreds. (They were not graded on the quality of the study, but felt judged and so tried hard to find a "perfect" study).

I wish those who worship at the feet of science could all be exposed to a class like I taught and worked with world class CHEM and BIO Univ Researchers and watched them send their studies for peer review to friends.



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 08:14 AM
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It comes down to having faith in something vs having confidence in it.

For it to be faith, it can have no evidence supporting it.

Confidence has some evidence supporting it.

I have trouble believing in something without any quantifiable evidence, but I assure you, it's not that I don't want to.
edit on 20-4-2021 by wheresthebody because: werdz



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 08:55 AM
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a reply to: The2Billies


Good science you can trust is when people try to disprove what another scientist said.

That was a very important class you taught. In my own work, I tend to do the "lazy" thing at first, but once I have something working, I then try to "break" the hypothesis by rigorously subjecting it to all kinds of experiments designed specifically to make it not work. The thing is, that takes a lot longer but the result is that the hypothesis is quite robust afterwards.

It also means whatever I create tends to stay operational. I hate chewing my cud twice; when I finish, I want something to stay finished.

One of the things I find personally satisfying is that during the defense of a thesis or dissertation, my alma mater still tended to rip any paper to shreds. I have met several students that resented this practice, but I have met more who appreciated it. It seems they understood the value of having to defend their work in a hostile environment. That's a good thing, but I also feel my school was in the minority on this issue.

After 40 years, I can usually spot when someone is softballing a review and when they aren't. At least there's that.


I wish those who worship at the feet of science could all be exposed to a class like I taught and worked with world class CHEM and BIO Univ Researchers and watched them send their studies for peer review to friends.

I think part of the issue is that those who, as you say, worship at the feet of science are poorly informed on how science happens. I usually get a good chuckle, for instance, when someone complains about funding... the truth is, funding is going to happen on all sides of any issue. Scientists are people too, not some greater being with a big brain sitting in an ivory tower surrounded by massive machines they created and never wanting for anything. That's just in the comic books. In reality, we have all the same base human needs as anyone else, the same desires and frailties and weaknesses as anyone else.

I have a close friend now who I met in college. He was attending on the GI bill and going into engineering like me. After a while, we began to talk, and he admitted to struggling in a few classes. I offered to tutor him, and for the rest of his college tenure he began to help me with things around the place that I was starting to struggle with. It was a good trade for both of us.

After graduation, he confessed he didn't feel ready to enter the field. He had a project he wanted a prototype of, but he didn't know how to start, so I offered to help him develop a prototype. We did; he has it now, and it works exactly like he envisioned. He was deeply involved at every stage of development; he actually refined his soldering skills stuffing the boards. I still did the "surgery" when there was a problem, but he did most of the assembly work. Afterwards, when he was watching his creation work, he confessed to me that until college, he had always seen science like some kind of magic. He never understood how computers could act "alive" and yet be simply automatons, machines (his project used an Arduino Teensy with a fairly complex program). It took him building one himself to realize that yes, a computer is just a soul-less machine.

I think a lot of people are like he was. They see scientists as literal gods with powers beyond mortal man. They're not; we're not. We're just people who know how to use technology. Still human, and still full of the same weaknesses that all humans have.

TheRedneck



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 09:04 AM
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a reply to: wheresthebody

I actually find it comforting believing in God. Maybe it's that the magic is gone now that I understand so much about the inner workings of technology, and my belief that there is a benevolent being greater than me, who loves me unconditionally, fills that void that science can no longer fill.

Maybe there's something in humans that needs to believe in something greater. After all, look around at society. Humans can be greedy, fearful, manipulative, hateful, evil if you will, creatures. We are the only species of life we know of that will hurt each other for the pleasure of it. If we are the end-all of intelligence, that is a pretty dim view of the future.

TheRedneck



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 09:09 AM
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originally posted by: TheRedneck
a reply to: wheresthebody

I actually find it comforting believing in God. Maybe it's that the magic is gone now that I understand so much about the inner workings of technology, and my belief that there is a benevolent being greater than me, who loves me unconditionally, fills that void that science can no longer fill.

Maybe there's something in humans that needs to believe in something greater. After all, look around at society. Humans can be greedy, fearful, manipulative, hateful, evil if you will, creatures. We are the only species of life we know of that will hurt each other for the pleasure of it. If we are the end-all of intelligence, that is a pretty dim view of the future.

TheRedneck


There is a term for what you described. It's called a "coping mechanism".



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 09:21 AM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

I've always thought of science as about facts while religion is about truths.



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 09:57 AM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

I often joke that I am a "Saganist", I believe that we are a way for the universe to know itself.

I was comforted by faith when I was younger, I believed in ghosts, aliens, lake monsters, magic, god and jesus, I was baptized and went to church (presbyterian) until I was old enough to realize that I couldn't believe in any of it. I still remember the sting of it, losing faith, begging for any gods or ghosts that might exist to give me a sign that there was more. They never did, and though it was unsettling, from an early age I couldn't accept something as truth without verifiable evidence.

As a result I have become very comfortable with questions. My favourite questions are the ones without clear answers, the ones that create even more questions that lead to more questions and so on.

I want to believe, that's what brought me to this site in the first place, and that's what keeps me coming back.



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 10:33 AM
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originally posted by: wheresthebody
a reply to: TheRedneck

I often joke that I am a "Saganist", I believe that we are a way for the universe to know itself.

I was comforted by faith when I was younger, I believed in ghosts, aliens, lake monsters, magic, god and jesus, I was baptized and went to church (presbyterian) until I was old enough to realize that I couldn't believe in any of it. I still remember the sting of it, losing faith, begging for any gods or ghosts that might exist to give me a sign that there was more. They never did, and though it was unsettling, from an early age I couldn't accept something as truth without verifiable evidence.

As a result I have become very comfortable with questions. My favourite questions are the ones without clear answers, the ones that create even more questions that lead to more questions and so on.

I want to believe, that's what brought me to this site in the first place, and that's what keeps me coming back.


You reminded me of this gem



edit on 20-4-2021 by TzarChasm because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 11:02 AM
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a reply to: TzarChasm

Holy crap, that dude is amazing!

Thank you a million times over for introducing me to Theodore Sturgeon, or I guess as I've know him, Kilgore Trout...

My mind is so blown right now, never did I imagine he was based on someone real.

Looks like I have some reading to do!



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 11:04 AM
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originally posted by: wheresthebody
a reply to: TzarChasm

Holy crap, that dude is amazing!

Thank you a million times over for introducing me to Theodore Sturgeon, or I guess as I've know him, Kilgore Trout...

My mind is so blown right now, never did I imagine he was based on someone real.

Looks like I have some reading to do!


LMAO

My pleasure brother



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 11:21 AM
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a reply to: TzarChasm

This makes me want a "Science Fiction as a Religion" thread.

The ideas around Tralfamadorians and a non-linear temporal existence have messed with my head more than any lingering impact of a religious upbringing...

Sorry for the thread drift, I'll stop now.



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 11:33 AM
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a reply to: TheRedneck




God can never be questioned.
Only the Chosen may interpret what God says.
The Chosen tell the masses what they need to know.
Any deviation from the words of the Chosen is blasphemy and must be condemned at every turn.
Devotees are typically so blinded by their faith they cannot see their own flaws in reasoning.


I would actually dispute all of these when it comes to religion. What you're describing sounds more like an extremely fundamentalist religion or even a cult.

I think that maybe you mistook an ISIS training camp for a comparative theology class. All but the most hard line religions these days teach that there are many truths and many ways to interpret faith, and even the hard line ones will tell you that sometimes prophets said contradictory things, or that some texts became hardersofter when they were translated between languages or preached by different figures.

Take Islam, there are multiple interpretations regarding alcohol, and whether it is OK to do things like using wine to make vinegar because you denature it and it's no longer an intoxicant. Or if it's OK to use alcohol in cleaning products or perfumes.



posted on Apr, 20 2021 @ 02:09 PM
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originally posted by: TheRedneck
a reply to: The2Billies


Good science you can trust is when people try to disprove what another scientist said.

That was a very important class you taught. In my own work, I tend to do the "lazy" thing at first, but once I have something working, I then try to "break" the hypothesis by rigorously subjecting it to all kinds of experiments designed specifically to make it not work. The thing is, that takes a lot longer but the result is that the hypothesis is quite robust afterwards.
After 40 years, I can usually spot when someone is softballing a review and when they aren't. At least there's that.


I knew you'd be one of the good guys when it comes to science.
Don't have to eat a lot of trash panda droppings that way but can watch them play instead!



posted on Apr, 21 2021 @ 05:08 AM
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a reply to: AaarghZombies


I would actually dispute all of these when it comes to religion. What you're describing sounds more like an extremely fundamentalist religion or even a cult.

I was looking at the subject historically, not just in the present. Present day religion has become sort of a'la carte, with most people simply accepting bits and pieces here and there while ignoring the parts they do not like. In that sense, religion has, IMO, become "watered down" and in many cases, is less about faith in a higher being than it is about something to feel good that one is a part of... like a social club.

My personal view of religion is that it is something extremely personal and needs no oversight from any authority. If one is serious about their religious views it will show through their own adherence (or at least their attempts at adherence) to the religious principles.

However, throughout history religion has been pretty much as I described it: blind faith without ever questioning "why," and socially forced adherence to the dogma. The radical sects of Islam, the Roman Catholic Church, the Spanish Inquisition, even the Salem Witch Trials, and these are just a few examples. The infamous Bloody Mary of Britain was "bloody" because of her relentless pursuit and executions of religious adversaries. Even today, some of the more fundamentalist churches practice a large part of that, and as you mention, cults are well known for this.

TheRedneck



posted on Apr, 21 2021 @ 01:35 PM
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For me, The belief in God, is the belief in a vast intelligence far beyond human understanding, existing outside of the physical universe.
The scientific method is rather primitive, but however accurate the knowledge of physical universe become, these recitations would not equate to the universe it's self, or what lies beyond.

Consciousness it's self could take science along time to figure out, how could it ever be done objectively ?

The belief in God, is the belief in objective moral truth.
Truth is this respect is not relative
Morality is a scientific imperative,

"Religion" seems to be a synonym for an "Institution of Belief" in what is supernatural (beyond science)
Science is and "Institution of Knowledge" that must always strive to understand what is natural,
not for mere technology, but to untangle ignorance in general

Ignorance is moral affairs, is mostly not covered by science, but by law, which comes from religion, and is arguably the crowning feature of a civilization.

What is it the drives the will ?

Civilization can't develop science without a system of religious beliefs.
They will not endure interstellar journeys, with out hope, faith, and a few hail marys

This may be an answer to the fermi paradox.

Science is humans figuring out how stuff works,
The fact that is does, and that it seems logical to us at all, is where the more esoteric aspects of religion kick in.

The religious books are mostly about how live in a way, that does not cause a collapse the structures needed for science.


edit on 0000004022842America/Chicago21 by rom12345 because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 21 2021 @ 02:38 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

In my youth, I was a Christian Methodist.

Now...my religion (not a cult) is based on faith in my space alien "Gaods," who purportedly travel to our planet --- in a nuts and bolts starship on occasion.

But...to each his own --- I don't believe that God/Gaods created the Universe. Instead, I believe in some kind of scientific, natural reproduction (Black Holes?) that created the Universe.



posted on Apr, 22 2021 @ 06:44 AM
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a reply to: rom12345


The religious books are mostly about how live in a way, that does not cause a collapse the structures needed for science.

Now that is one helluva deep statement!


TheRedneck



posted on Apr, 23 2021 @ 09:50 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck




Actually, that is a misconception. The Scientific Method developed as a response to religious dogma. People wanted to know how things worked, and experimented behind the church's back. Eventually, enough people were researching so the church simply couldn't keep up with those it felt deserved prosecution.


What we know today as science, I knew I didn't elaborate enough but I reckon that faith and reasoning go hand in hand. Animism has a great representation of techniques when one considers method and doctrine. I'm not arguing that this is science practiced by our ancestors, I'm suggesting the thought processes behind such things, including the doctrine have fundamental religious roots yet they also display sure signs of methodology which naturally has a place within the scientific world.

I'm also inclined to believe human ingenuity is a natural progression and that Americans most likely did independently invent it's own societies, language and culture before the dreaded European. I think it's a state of natural evolution we've been playing for at least 500,000 years. Man didn't make advanced axes to club seals and pick limpits...

You have strong points about dogma but I was attempting to start the conversation into the origins of science and religion.




Yes, the Scientific Method is far different from ritual. A ritual uses symbolic imagery and demands that ritualistic practices be performed exactly the same way without question. The typical purpose of a ritual is to remember some historic event in the religion


One might not learn from ritual but at least they understand the process. Assumption is a free commodity with the public perception of science. But since when have people had a general modicum of intelligence? Silly question, I know...

I don't believe our ancestors were dumb, they were a ritualistic superstitious bunch though, especially the beer makers! But it applies to most schools.




On the other hand, if I wish to test out a hypothesis, I have no set method I have to use. I determine the method myself, based on a desire to discover the truth about whether or not my hypothesis works. Whether or not my method is proper will be determined by peer review. Others will examine my work and, if my methodology is flawed, they will reject it.


Well said, I have no PhD and I'm always the first to admit my stupidity. The key is understanding. Modern science is seemingly overly complex yet that doesn't mean you or I can't work within our boundaries and define something. That's literally the clause one signs in attempting to understand something. By it's boundaries and our ability to comprehend them.

Our world is pretty well defined, it's no wonder people don't bother and treat scientists like religious figures, am I right?





I have to stop here to mention that I admire that ability. I am quite likely the world's worst cook, and I actually envy those who can create a meal that is palatable. Strangely enough, I am pretty good at setting up chemical apparati, but cooking seems to evade me... despite it being, in essence, chemistry


Eat humble pie is my best advice, it is technically chemistry but there's a lot of anti science going on. It helps to listen. There's a few dishes I've rebelled against that the royalty have right. Simple things too, scrambled eggs need butter and they demand to be not overcooked. Sometimes it's simple haha.



posted on Apr, 24 2021 @ 02:01 AM
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a reply to: RAY1990


What we know today as science, I knew I didn't elaborate enough but I reckon that faith and reasoning go hand in hand.

I'm sure that if one goes far enough back in history, one will find reasoning behind faith. The problem is that humans as a rule are simplistic and greedy. The greediest often see religion as a way to control the simplest, and dogma is born.

True faith, on the other hand, is much more complex. In some ways it can be seen as the exact opposite of science. I have watched objects fall to earth all my life, so I have accepted that there is some force we call gravity which causes this... that is science, and it tells me to expect an object to try and fall to earth. Faith, on the other hand, is expecting something that one does not have prior witnessed information to support. It's almost like in science one observes then concludes, whereas with faith one concludes then observes.

That's something I realized just now, considering your post. Thank you.


I don't believe our ancestors were dumb, they were a ritualistic superstitious bunch though, especially the beer makers! But it applies to most schools.

It has been said that any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. Knowledge builds on itself; if I want to understand why the sky is blue, I must first understand how light travels through various mediums... until I understand the latter, I cannot understand the former. So I agree, our ancestors were not dumb, but they did lack the knowledge we have accumulated since then. We are now better able to see that what may have appeared as magic to them is really just science they were not ready to understand.

We all stand on the shoulders of giants who came before.


Our world is pretty well defined, it's no wonder people don't bother and treat scientists like religious figures, am I right?

I'll agree that our world seems well-defined. There are a million unexplained things out there, though, which is what brought me to ATS in the first place. I want to know, and whenever I come across something I do not know and cannot understand, I search for that understanding and knowledge.

One thing that the scientific method cannot really seem to counteract is the human desire to be right. Everyone wants to be right, and that includes those who spend their days in research. So yeah, we are told, over and over by scientists, that we understand our world. That is at least partially an illusion, though. We don't even understand gravity! We use it, we can calculate how it will behave, but the underlying mechanism that causes matter to attract matter across empty space? For now, we take that on faith based on a lifetime of watching it happen.

That's one of the most basic forces in the universe. Until we can understand it and why it functions how it does, I wouldn't call our understanding "well-defined." I would say many believe it to be well-defined, but that it taking things on faith. Understandable, but not really true.


Eat humble pie is my best advice

As long as someone else cooks it.


TheRedneck



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