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Re: Atheism

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Posted by Harvey on April 15, 2002 20:28:55 UTC

Scott,

***From what I have read I believe Sagan was an atheist. If you have references to the contrary I would appreciate the information. I am almost positive that Darwin was an atheist, but again, it depends on the information that you read.***

Maybe I'll dig up the info that I have.

***Science is not prepared are able to answer any questions on the existence of God, that I do understand fully, but my question was has science killed God. I think we are living in times where the rise in fundamentalist religions will threaten the very fabric of the scientific method. As far as I know there is only one true method - Observation - information gathering - hypothesis - testing and retesting - conclusions. What other scientific reasoning is there (maybe at the good colleges they teach "different" scientific methods).***

There's different means for theory selection, theory rejection (e.g., verificationism versus falsificationism), hypothesis creation (e.g., no rational rules versus strict rules), and various other 'methods' which create a little more diversity than what 'one' method would allow.

***How could God stand up to this scrutiny? It can't, hence the rise of 'dark age' fundamental religion boasting.***

That could have been written in 1902, 1802, or even further back. I think we'd all be surprised how old arguments can appear like new ones.

***You will have to face the fact, Harv, that just because you are smart and learned in the ways of science and rational thought doesn't mean the rest of the world is - they could care less. Science is the enemy because it has torn apart the fabric or religions foundation that we are special and unique creatures (apart from the rest of the world).***

Science and technology have been tearing the fabric of religious foundation for many centuries if not longer. Each generation finds a new way to relate to their metaphysical beliefs in the language of the day.

***Metaphysics is good for a deep conjecture about life, but aside from that it is essentially pointless. Like Sagan said - Science is our candle in the dark. Without science we could not function without superstition - our brains wouldn't allow it; our primitive culture evolved that way. So has science taken over as our religion in this new age of information and technology? Maybe fundamentalism is a last gasp of air for a dying philosophy.***

"Science is our candle in the dark" is just another metaphysical myth. Such metaphors help to reinvent the next generation of metaphysical belief. Fundamentalism today is not the fundamentalism of the 16th century. These are just views compared to the current status quo. In 50 years strong reductionism might appear to be a fundamentalist belief. Who knows?

Warm regards, Harv

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