The Difference Between Science and Religion

 Stfrancis (@Stfrancis)4 years, 9 months ago

Science as an ideology and discipline seeks a reductionist and material explanation for the processes and composition of reality. So far, tracing principles back to their origins and simplifying mathematical abstractions into coherent statements, science makes a single profound claim:

All of our observable and non observable universe is the logical evolution and unfolding of a single set of (mathematical) ideas, being quantum principles and their macro-correlates. Our current and future states of existence can be rationally traced back in time and space to a single beginning, prior to which only mathematical potential existed.

Religion seeks to understand the observable and non observable universe not from a reductionist or material perspective, but taking things are they are and have been within our immediate experience and incorporating these things into a rational narrative, much as science does but with much more philosophical bases. All spirituality and religion condenses into a single profound claim as well, but as it is not a material claim, it does not contain or require material evidence or logical proof, only experiential proof:

Existence manifests from existence itself. Mathematical principles, potentialities, time, space, and their contents must arise from something of a grander context and outside of the parameters of these “forms”. What that is, is hard to say as it is not directly observable, but as a subset of possibility, our universe must be contained in a larger set of existence and its differentiation actuated by a supreme actuator.

Thoughts?

December 30, 2013 at 8:34 pm
SpiritofSix (10) (@SpiritofSix) 4 years, 9 months ago ago

“All of our observable and non observable universe is the logical evolution and unfolding of a single set of (mathematical) ideas, being quantum principles and their macro-correlates. Our current and future states of existence can be rationally traced back in time and space to a single beginning, prior to which only mathematical potential existed.”

This idea is not unanimous in the scientific community. The concept of the universe being a sort of “clock” that is wound up and is ticking away is a plausible idea but it seems to me that you claim it is a fundamental agreement in the entire field of scientific thought.

“Religion seeks to understand the observable and [un]observable universe, not from a reductionist or material perspective, but taking things [as] they are and have been within our immediate experience and incorporating these things into a rational narrative”

Religious texts are riddled with anecdotes that are from “rational” but I definitely agree that it serves to explain experiential phenomena through a narrative-like form. However, I do not see religious texts as any form of “experiential” proof but rather an expression of some level, or degree, of understanding (much as science but it is based on more stable principles).

“Existence manifests from existence itself”

I am not sure what that means.

“Mathematical principles, potentialities, time, space, and their contents must arise from something of a grander context and outside of the parameters of these “forms”. What that is, is hard to say as it is not directly observable, but as a subset of possibility, our universe must be contained in a larger set of existence and its differentiation actuated by a supreme actuator”

A lot is being said here but it seems that you mean that our understandings of “reality” are merely surface understandings of a much deeper, more intricate “reality.” If this is what you mean, then I agree without a doubt. As for a “supreme actuator” I presume you mean a god-like entity, which in my opinion, is very unlikely (although I do not, and so far, cannot know for sure).

My belief is that our definitions and labels for our experiential reality is clouding our ability to understand things on a deeper level. “Order” and “intelligence” as we know it exists in many forms (of which are often deemed as mathematical and natural) and so the possibility of self-actualization of existence and of the universe (and all its possible forms) is not that far of a stretch.

Just a thought.

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Stfrancis (110) (@Stfrancis) 4 years, 9 months ago ago

@spiritofsix

“This idea is not unanimous in the scientific community. The concept of the universe being a sort of “clock” that is wound up and is ticking away is a plausible idea but it seems to me that you claim it is a fundamental agreement in the entire field of scientific thought.”

No it is not agreed that time is fundamentally a linear phenomena, in fact there is very good evidence emerging that our liner/forward experience of time is a construct of our human brains and is not necessary to explain physical occurrences. I suppose I meant more to address the universally accepted axiom of entropy, or newton’s second law of thermodynamics, in which net entropy in a closed system (the universe) always increases along a linear timeline. This means that there is an observable and measurable order to the universe which has led us to all but prove the occurrence of a “big bang” and subsequent cosmological events. Along a time continuum, moving forward backward, or not at all, the big bang most likely sits at one end.

“Religious texts are riddled with anecdotes that are [far] from “rational” but I definitely agree that it serves to explain experiential phenomena through a narrative-like form. However, I do not see religious texts as any form of “experiential” proof but rather an expression of some level, or degree, of understanding (much as science but it is based on more stable principles).

“Rational”, I suppose, is an unclear term so I will change it to reasonable. Religious anecdotes and narratives are not rational from a human perspective in terms of miracles, deities, and on a multitude of other levels, but the narratives are reasonable and understandable when considered as part of a grand narrative. A god speaks to a man, a goddess uses her power to influence human events, a man disobeys a deity and is punished. The cause and effect of a linear religious narrative, regardless of the details, are an attempt to explain experiential phenomena in a reasonable way. Many of us get caught up in the fantastic nature of the stories we learn and thus focus too much on the actions and words of spiritual narratives rather than the underlying propositions, or morals if you will. Fundamentally, the bible is an explanation of why anything exists, who created us, what our relationship to the creator is, and how we should live our lives. These are experiential and existential questions which spiritual narrative addresses. Shamanistic religions tend to opt much further in the direction of direct experience over personal or cultural understanding when talking about the divine.

“A lot is being said here but it seems that you mean that our understandings of “reality” are merely surface understandings of a much deeper, more intricate “reality.” If this is what you mean, then I agree without a doubt. As for a “supreme actuator” I presume you mean a god-like entity, which in my opinion, is very unlikely (although I do not, and so far, cannot know for sure).”

Existence is a self-reinforcing concept. If there were nothing then there would be nothing. If something exists then the term “nothing” is meaningless. It’s an all or nothing claim, lol. The fact that we experience existence on whatever level we do is the singly necessary and wholly sufficient evidence for being in general. That being said, many possibilities in the form of creativity and mathematical potentials exist only in what we believe is an ephemeral mental space but are not ever observed in our universe. If our universe comprises all of existence, then these forms and concepts would not be possible mental experiences, we would only be able to conceive of the physically possible and possibly the future. Thus our universal existence is composed of a subset of the total set possibilities regarding existence, either as a creation of the divine who lies outside and independent of creation, or as part of a multiverse in which infinite possibilities are actualized.

I agree that as humans we are aware of a painfully minuscule perspective when it comes to existence. A supreme actuator, a term I just made up, is a neutral term including “god-like” entities but also including unfathomable variations. “God” as we have claimed to understand the concept almost certainly falls embarrassingly short of what a supreme actuator would be. I’m not talking about a personal, male, “deity” but a source and force of all energy and possibility, infinity as we can never know. Far above and beyond “cosmic consciousness” as some like to call it, a supreme actuator is a priori to time, space, matter, energy, universes, multiverses, even its own manifestation.

If I was to give some physical analogy to what I mean by supreme actuator, I would liken it to potential energy in physics. Potential energy exists outside of time, prior to an object’s creation or destruction, universally present and potent from before anything to after everything. It is constant, it is perfect, it is infinite, and it is immanent.

Thanks so much for your time and attention. I’d love to hear other’s thoughts on this!

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Ray Butler (1,422)M (@trek79) 4 years, 9 months ago ago

Basically I think Religion is simple a promotion of a moral, often legal, code, it doesn’t have to be theologically fortified, but generally people define it as that.

I think a lot of what you are saying is just about the avenues of philosophy a person can explore; there is the metaphysics, rationally dissecting possibilities and in a sense of judgement settling upon what seems most likely. Where science is all about trial and error, testing hypothesise in every imaginable way until you arrive at the most conclusive explanation.

But really both methods are just branches of philosophy, but science is limited to the observable and testable whereas the alternative can branch into the intangible.

I think a lot of it comes down to the classic adage “There’s no accounting for taste” because one person will find all their solace in science, another will find it in faith, religion or spirituality, but then someone like me rejects the whole idea that these things have any life affirming meaning and embrace art and expression as the soul of humanity.

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i4c1m2b (70) (@i4CiM2B) 4 years, 9 months ago ago

The difference. Science is born again as a quantum baby while religion is coming closer to death with each new generation that is born and more and more youth rejecting it for reasons too numerous to list

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Anonymous (175) (@) 4 years, 9 months ago ago

I don’t believe in a creator, but then all science seeks to do is explain “the how” not the “why” as such. Religion IMO is a man-made construct designed to take divine principles for human ends. It’s purpose really is not to “explain” how the universe exists, but to provide the way as to how God intends his creation to live.

Also, the Bible and Koran only speak briefly about how God/Allah created the universe, Earth and humanity. Most of each book denotes how God/Allah expresses his love for humans, how he expects us to live, the morals and values he wants us to live by, and the means how doing such will gain humans eternal heaven. So creationalism is not paramount IMO.

I don’t get frankly the dichotomy of science and religion, IMO it arose because religious authorities in the early modern era saw it as a threat to their power. The two have wholly distinct purposes, even if they are similar in their conclusions somewhat. There is no scientific holy book, where scientists say not to eat beef or pork, don’t work on the Sabbath, spare the rod and spoil the child, parting of the scientific Red Sea or the scientific parable of the Prodigal Son and the Good Samaritan, etc.

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Stfrancis (110) (@Stfrancis) 4 years, 9 months ago ago

Human leaders of religions and science have depicted some clash between the two, most of them atheists themselves. While a rational and logical person would find fault with the hypocrisy and fundamentalism of many religious leaders in the past and present, the same can be said for secular leaders and prominent scientists. Those who claim religion is the basis for most world conflicts turn a blind eye to the nature of politics in general. Conflict is a natural occurrence and religion or morals or profit or anything else are just excuses for the powerful to exploit the weak.

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LVX (297) (@Vovinawol) 4 years, 9 months ago ago

The day the two became a separate thing was the twilight of the knowing man lol

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