[FoRK] Re: Anything to be learned from religion?

Elias Sinderson elias
Fri Aug 12 12:21:43 PDT 2005

Stephen D. Williams wrote:

> I think your argument is deep into semantic absolutism. [...] This 
> model seems more true than any other. 

This, then, would be the crux of science - what we currently have may 
not be a perfect understanding of things but it is, by far, the best we 
have /ever/ had. The predictive power of the current model is 
astonishing inasmuch as it allows a great many wonderous things. 
Religion, by comparison, doesn't even come close in this regard.

So, yes, science may not have it right, but it is a lot closer to 'the 
truth' than you will get by reading (any of) the good book(s). What's 
more, the scientific process allows for self-correction, although it has 
been said that scientific revolution happens not so much by convincing 
others that you are right, as by the old guard dying off and taking 
their (mis)convictions with them. Perhaps we can look to this model of 
scientific progress for an answer on the question of how to deal with 
religious zealotry - don't, just let them die off and take their 
religion with them.  :-)

Seriously though, the country really needs to prevent the zealots from 
taking over the government and institutionalizing their beliefs. In this 
regard, however, there will be a long uphill battle to undo the damage 
that has already been done. . . Thankfully we have a not so secret 
weapon called REALITY on our side - let them talk all they want, but 
it's damned hard to construct any semblance of a convincing arguement 
against widely accepted facts like, oh, the earth being round and 
orbiting the sun, germ theory, genetics, etc. That the majority of the 
world is laughing over the debate of whether to include intelligent 
design in the science curriculum seems to have been lost on most people.


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