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God Likes Good Science

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Posted by Richard Ruquist on December 5, 2001 15:16:33 UTC

The biblical covenant is that God rewards those who keep his/her laws with bounty. If so, we then may use success as a measure of what god likes. That seems logical to me, assuming that a covenant is operative. Perhaps a few of you will agree with me.

It also seems to me that the covenant should be broadened to say that God rewards those who discover hiser laws because for the last 2,500 years, the flourishing of science was followed by the fluorishing of empires, and the stagnation of empires followed (with some time delay) the stagnation of science. This seems true for the Greco-Roman empire, and also Islam, and European science as well.

The Euro-American empire is still going, but there is evidence that its science is beginning to stagnate. Government support and academic freedom are required for science to flourish, and both are now in retreat, at least for physics and in America.

For example, we abandoned the SuperCollider and gave high energy research to the Europeans. We are hanging on in astronomy with Hubble (but the last science job I had was with ITEK who built the KECK telescope and developed satellite photography. I lost my job there when the govt stopped supporting ITEK. It no longer exists) We are doing very well in biology, but fundamentalism threatens both endeavours in the US. Like the Romans we are still way ahead in military research. Our fate may be similar if religion becomes dominant politically, as it did in Rome.

What is needed is for religion to look forward to discovering all the laws of nature, which are the true laws of god. Religion has always used the best available science at the time of its birth. But then the scientific basis of each religion has always stagnated. We need religion to incorporate all the new discoveries of science, rather than fighting to retain more ancient science. It's all science. The option is how modern you want your scientific beliefs to be.

You probably object to my saying it's all science. But religion springs from observations of both nature and for some, the supernatural. It's more subjective than observations of nature, observing the supernatural, but the goal is the same, to understand how the world works. The only problem is that religion tends to stagnate, especially when the politicians take over, like Constantine, or 13th century Islam, or the radical right. Religious liberals are almost extinct today, being plummeled by both atheistic scientists and religious fundamentalists. Is it not time for science and religious liberalism to recognize that they have common cause?

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