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Is science corrosive to religion?
Religion

alexwar
Feb 10, 2011
11 votes
11 debaters
1


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5
yes science is corrosive to religion.


alexwar
Feb 10, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Science is already putting religion against the ropes. It makes the entire idea behind those theologies ludicrous. From a talking snake to a world flood religion is easily disproved, archeologists have proved that there was never a world flood. radiometric dating has shown that the earth is about 4.5 billion years old not the 6000 yr hypothesis that is preached by creationists.

 
vicisd
Feb 10, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Yes, Science is corrosive to religion although a better world may be debunk or to call into question. Today it seems that these two beliefs are put onto opposite ends of the spectrum. What's wrong with science disproving beliefs of creationists? Can you not handle the truth? Religion has caused so many people to close their minds and not accept anything that goes against their beliefs. They live life in black and white.
All in all science and religion and hand in hand. They both try to explain existence and life. Why people see them a completely separate entities is indeed a bigger question.

 
theenemyisprofit
Feb 11, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Understanding how the Universe operates and why it exists does not require invoking God (or religion).

Science unveils the underlying mysteries of reality. Religion explains reality with mysticism, which is no longer necessary for understanding nature (i.e. fundamental physical forces).

Faith is optional. Enlightenment is liberating. Therein lies the corrosive effect science has on religion. Educated people will choose one over the other since only one is needed. Secular humanism will triumph.

 
scarleta
Feb 17, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: hiruko Show

Chemically hardwired into the brain huh? Which chemicals? What part of the brain? Care to provide a source on this?

 
scarleta
Feb 17, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: bradj16 Show

"Human nature demands an element of faith"

Why?

"What good would a fully scientific world be? where people aimlessly wander through life, part of the machine. This would simply promote unchecked nihilism."

So according to you fully accepting science equals aimlessness and nihilism? Why would this be? And furthermore I'm not even fully convinced that "unchecked nihilism" is necessarily a bad thing. What machine are we talking about? And most importantly, if science is right and religion wrong then it doesn't matter what life is like, you're still wrong.

"it's (religion is) simply an interpretation of human morality. Science does not erode basic morals."

If you think about this statement for more than three seconds you will realize why this does not work as a definition of religion. And science very well could "erode basic morals". Why would it be unable to?


 
alexwar
Feb 21, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: hiruko Show

You are plainly stating that religion is comparable to the effects drugs have? This is a mere side affect of drugs. That's far from the point in reality if one rejects creation or the literalistic view of the bible then evolution is in play. If we take into account evolution i don't see how religion can be hard wired into us if i doesn't help in the survival of the species. It horrifically egocentric to even suggest that such a thing is needed in our society.

 
alexwar
Feb 21, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: hiruko Show

Haven't we already unlocked the human genome? I have never heard of anyone in field of genetics to even suggest that religion is a evolutionary trait. Its quite obvious why it has persisted in many cultures, the main reason being the lack of knowledge those generations possessed, or better known as the god of the gaps. People will naturally make up truths if one does not have the knowledge. By stating that since it's in every culture it has to be a genetic trait does that mean that war is also a genetic trait as well? In the animal kingdom violence arises in the food chain or over a mate it is almost always one on one when it comes to that (exempting pack animals). So if you imply that merely because it has bin in every culture then by the same rule everything that is widely common among cultures must be a genetic trait correct?

 
alexwar
Feb 21, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: hiruko Show

Just because you use a part of the brain when practicing religion does not make it hard wired. If i can get the same effect by doing something else your point here is destroyed.

 
scarleta
Feb 24, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: hiruko Show

Okay, I believe we were thinking of two different things when you said "religious impulse." When I first read your post I thought "(S)he thinks something as specific as religion is chemically hardwired into the brain? Really?" but if by religious impulse you meant something less specific that various ideas/beliefs could fill I might buy that.

I do have one objection though:

"2) Studies show that religion promotes a number of traits (organization, altruism, mental resilience, the appearance of trustworthiness) that helps individuals, but more dramatically groups, survive to reproduce."

When I asked you to provide a source before I was just being facetious, but I do genuinely want to see a source on this because I was under the impression that it was the exact opposite, and that religiosity of a people generally correlated to lower social health (for whatever reason).

 
scarleta
Feb 24, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: hiruko Show

Perhaps because it's well-established that a component of morality is genetically inherited, and therefore resistant to social change?

A component of morality or a component of the way people see morality?

That was a rhetorical question. All that is genetically inherited is the way people see morality, which does not necessarily correspond to actually morality. I see no reason that science can not reveal moral truth. It's just a matter of whether or not people follow it.

 
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6
no, science is not corrosive to religion


bradj16
Feb 11, 2011
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Human nature demands an element of faith, whether it be for humanity to better itself or of a purpose in life. Science doesn't in fact prove anything in the bible wrong as the bible isn't necessarily a literal document. Faith can adapt to suit new climates through the power of metaphor, metaphors are timeless and with social underpinnings that science could never erode.

The key element of religion in my opinion is that of faith. What good would a fully scientific world be? where people aimlessly wander through life, part of the machine. This would simply promote unchecked nihilism.

Another point missed is that religion is circumstantial. The majority of the worlds population do not have a basic scientific education and thus are ignorant to the apparent "contradictions" science highlights.

Religion is not necessarily the belief in a God or an afterlife as I'm sure we are all aware, it's simply an interpretation of human morality. Science does not erode basic morals.

 
hiruko
Feb 10, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Another religion debate? Really? I eat this stuff up, and even I'm getting tired of it.

Besides, the question is overly simplistic. No, science is not necessarily corrosive to "religion". Yes, it is damaging the religions of today.

But religion will adapt, as it has done throughout history, to new politics, new culture, and yes, new science. It is not confined to foaming-at-the-mouth literalism, as the original argument seems to suggest.

In fact, the religious impulse is chemically hardwired into our brain. It's not going away. Claiming otherwise is just hopping into bed with every other out-on-a-limb utopian that's predicted social changes completely contrary to human nature.

 
theudas
Feb 11, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: alexwar Show

Science can refute claims different religions make about the natural world, but religion is adaptable. Science could possibly help religion get stronger as they could blend religion with it. it is corrosive to those who are unwilling to change, but they opt to be ignorant.

 
hobogenius
Feb 13, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Science and Religion are balancing forces. Science is the new and advanced; Religion is the old and wise. Science brings to Religion the new, and Religion guides Science morally. I myself do not believe in God in the way that is told by the Bible. I believe in an all powerfull central energy force which is the biggining and the end. Religion gives us guidance and Science pushes us forward.

 
shadovvelite
Feb 13, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: alexwar Show

Just wanted to state. Not all people who believe in God think that the world is only 6000 years old. There are different Christians that believe different things. There are Young Earth Creationist, Gap Theorist, and then there are also people ( I would consider myself to be in this category) who think that the earth was not created in the literal 24 hour day. All Genesis says is on this day or on the next day. It never says a 24 hour period. So what is a "day" to an eternal being. Also this was an accounting of the story, Moses (who is considered to have written Genesis) obviously was not present, so it was most likely put into terms that would be understandable to us.

 
hiruko
Feb 19, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: scarleta Show

"Chemically hardwired into the brain huh? Which chemicals? What part of the brain? Care to provide a source on this?"

Whoah there. I don’t understand why you’re so surprised by this. Aside from neuroplasticity, over the past fifty years we’ve seen little but nature kicking nurture’s butt. Why should the science of religion be any different?

But answering your requests off the top of my (admittedly flawed) head:

1. Serotonin and dopamine primarily.

2. Different studies say different things. I understand that the frontal lobes are talked about a lot, but it’s apparent that different forms of religious expression are concentrated in different areas of the brain.

3. I didn’t provide a source because I assumed it was common knowledge. If you want me to go dig up an online article or Google book or something I certainly can, but perhaps first I could just try and convince you just how reasonable a point I’m making?

The idea is that religiosity is an evolved trait based in our brain chemistry. It goes something like this:

---

1) Religion is found in every known human society. (I believe it’s on the list of anthropological universals.)

2) Studies show that religion promotes a number of traits (organization, altruism, mental resilience, the appearance of trustworthiness) that helps individuals, but more dramatically groups, survive to reproduce.

3) Therefore, religiosity is likely an evolved trait, based in brain chemistry. Some people will have a greater predisposition to it than others, but that doesn’t change how deeply imbedded it is in the majority.

---

The only scientists I’ve ever read who outright disputed this were Freud and, less prestigious, a pair of “neurotheologins”. Darwin hinted at it, and even Richard “God-Delusion” Dawkins is on board, though he an others like him believe religiosity is a random “side-effect” of evolution rather than an advantageous trait in reproduction.

Care to be a tad less antagonistic about this?


 
hiruko
Feb 19, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: scarleta Show

"If you think about this statement for more than three seconds you will realize why this does not work as a definition of religion. And science very well could "erode basic morals". Why would it be unable to?"

Perhaps because it's well-established that a component of morality is genetically inherited, and therefore resistant to social change? That would appear to give the (admittedly quite limited) definition of religion as a interpretation of human morality some some modern (and a lot of historical) merit.

 
roberthagedorn
Feb 19, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: alexwar Show

Snakes don't talk. Do a search: The First Scandal.

 
Dirt
May 28, 2011
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Science and religion are mutually exclusive.

I personally believe that that if they ever collide, we either don't sufficiently understand God, or sufficiently understand the universe.

 


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