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Science as religion (Merged)
Posted: 27 October 2010 05:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 46 ]
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citizenschallenge.pm - 27 October 2010 02:28 PM

Yes, doing science takes money.

But science isn’t limited to the doers.

For the average person it is a matter of absorbing the science that others have achieved though their books, media and such that has been made available - something I believe’s a worthy past time. Especially, those souls actively engaged in musings about the spiritual within our earthly physical world {or the spirit v. flesh interface… from a non woo perspective}.

Sure, but I don’t find awe and wonder in following in someone else’s footsteps. Not saying someone else wouldn’t. I’m just trying to warm up to this idea of finding this same sense of awe, wonder, beauty through science as I do with spirituality.

Maybe part of it as well is that in doing one learns to really appreciate what others have done.

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Posted: 27 October 2010 05:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 47 ]
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Gnostikosis - 27 October 2010 05:17 PM
citizenschallenge.pm - 27 October 2010 02:28 PM

Yes, doing science takes money.

But science isn’t limited to the doers.

For the average person it is a matter of absorbing the science that others have achieved though their books, media and such that has been made available - something I believe’s a worthy past time. Especially, those souls actively engaged in musings about the spiritual within our earthly physical world {or the spirit v. flesh interface… from a non woo perspective}.

Sure, but I don’t find awe and wonder in following in someone else’s footsteps. Not saying someone else wouldn’t. I’m just trying to warm up to this idea of finding this same sense of awe, wonder, beauty through science as I do with spirituality.

Maybe part of it as well is that in doing one learns to really appreciate what others have done.

Is there a difference in the awe and wonder of what one observes as an scientist or spiritualist. Does the addition of mysticism add to the awe or does it detract by introducing a mystical aspect which leaves one wondering if that can be relied on as truth?

[ Edited: 27 October 2010 05:31 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 27 October 2010 05:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 48 ]
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IMO when an average spiritual person looks at the universe, s/he only sees the apparent tranquility and associates that with a stable and benign intelligent designer of an orderly universe. A scientist on the other hand experiences not only the apparent tranquility, but in addition also recognizes the incredibly violent forces which created this order and are still at work.
Beauty does not necessarily translate as peaceful. There is incredible beauty in the violence of a supernova, or a black hole. This depth of understanding and appreciation is seldom achieved by a spiritualist, who stops at the concept of a creator and is not interested or in awe of the actual creative and evolutionary processes.

[ Edited: 27 October 2010 06:01 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 28 October 2010 05:56 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 49 ]
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Write4U - 27 October 2010 01:40 PM

Is science (serious inquiry into the nature of the universe) or technology (use of gadgets) taking over? Seems to me that answer is technology, not science, that is replacing the human values and morals. The threat of science is only to the spiritualist who’s notions of the universe are slowly being debunked by science. But to the average technology user, scientific inquiry is usually limited to using the dial on a toaster to produce darker or lighter toast. Not much to do with morals or values. How could science compete for moral values, other than demanding intellectual honesty?

But what means taking over? How can technology replace human values and morals? Technology is all about means, not means.

And I do not feel my spiritualism is debunked by science, it is more the opposite.

I like this, ‘intellectual honesty’, but why does that not lead to a clearer separation of what science is, and can do, and ethics, aesthetics, and wisdom? In religion (meta)physics and ethics are intertwined, but now that we know better (‘no ought from an is’), we should be better in this, and recognise the oppressing elements of religion, based on false metaphysical presuppositions.

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Posted: 28 October 2010 06:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 50 ]
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Gnostikosis - 27 October 2010 04:54 PM

You have to take some interest in your self to acknowledge and work on fixing your own faults.

True. But to see your position in the grand scheme of things could help in seeing you at the size you are…

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Posted: 28 October 2010 07:01 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 51 ]
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Write4U - 27 October 2010 05:41 PM

This depth of understanding and appreciation is seldom achieved by a spiritualist, who stops at the concept of a creator and is not interested or in awe of the actual creative and evolutionary processes.

question
So spiritual is the same as being theistic? What is spirituality for you? Can’t you be tranquil yourself when watching e.g. a volcano eruption?

(Remark: I am interested in the topic of spiritualism and science, but it is not the main topic of this thread. The main topic is to find out what correct or incorrect attitudes one can have with science. Is spirituality opposed to science?)

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Posted: 28 October 2010 08:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 52 ]
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Gnostikosis - 27 October 2010 05:17 PM
citizenschallenge.pm - 27 October 2010 02:28 PM

Yes, doing science takes money.

But science isn’t limited to the doers.

For the average person it is a matter of absorbing the science that others have achieved though their books, media and such that has been made available - something I believe’s a worthy past time. Especially, those souls actively engaged in musings about the spiritual within our earthly physical world {or the spirit v. flesh interface… from a non woo perspective}.

Sure, but I don’t find awe and wonder in following in someone else’s footsteps.

Do you really mean that? I ask because this sentence implies that only what you yourself discover holds validity.
For instance, I’ve learned incredible things through watching various David Attenborough documentaries. They have filled me with an awe that splashes over into spiritual awareness.
{Don’t we stand on the shoulders of the giants who came before us?}

Also, we should be careful about definitions

Write4U - 27 October 2010 05:41 PM

This depth of understanding and appreciation is seldom achieved by a spiritualist, who stops at the concept of a creator and is not interested or in awe of the actual creative and evolutionary processes.

I don’t believe “spiritualist” is the same as being aware of, and curious about the spiritual aspects of ourselves.
{Recognizing our connectedness to the fractals within creation.}

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Posted: 28 October 2010 08:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 53 ]
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Write4U - 27 October 2010 05:22 PM

Is there a difference in the awe and wonder of what one observes as an scientist or spiritualist. Does the addition of mysticism add to the awe or does it detract by introducing a mystical aspect which leaves one wondering if that can be relied on as truth?

Maybe not, that’s what I’m trying to understand.

IMO a person’s individual perspective is… individual. For example my perspective about science my be different then yours.

Pursuing spiritual ideas seems to have provided me a little more control over my perspective then a lot of other people I’ve run into apparently have. So I am happy to open myself up to new ideas, experiences and others POV to try and understand their perspective on the world. See if there is anything there I can find useful and gain a better understanding of reality.

Magic is magical until you understand the mechanics. There is a sense of awe and wonder in what one doesn’t understand however there is also a drive to understand. Awe and wonder, a sense of running into a mystery is great. Like someone sneaking up behind to scare you.

It’s what you don’t know that makes life exciting IMO. Once you come to understand something it’s no longer a mystery. Time to find the next challenge. For me to gain that sense of mystery, which to me is exciting, I need to be surprised by the magic. Not told how the magic works.

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Posted: 28 October 2010 10:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 54 ]
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citizenschallenge.pm - 28 October 2010 08:52 AM

Do you really mean that? I ask because this sentence implies that only what you yourself discover holds validity.
For instance, I’ve learned incredible things through watching various David Attenborough documentaries. They have filled me with an awe that splashes over into spiritual awareness.
{Don’t we stand on the shoulders of the giants who came before us?}

Also, we should be careful about definitions

Guilty, well almost. What I discover for myself has validity. What someone else claims they’ve discovered remains questionable. The exception to that is people I personally know and over time feel it’s reasonable to trust. I’ve been misled by authoritative claims before. If a claim made is not something I can test and validate for myself I think it is reasonable to remain skeptic.

For definitions, language is fickle sometimes. One individual has one legitimate meaning for a word in mind someone else could have a different legitimate meaning in mind. So some nuance of the argument doesn’t get across.

I don’t believe “spiritualist” is the same as being aware of, and curious about the spiritual aspects of ourselves.
{Recognizing our connectedness to the fractals within creation.}

Ok I see spiritualism as a means to chance one’s perspective of the world, so really changing their experience of reality. I can see science perhaps having this same potential however IMO it would have to be hands on. Reading about someone else’s experience you are still guessing about their perspective through your own. Individually a person may lack the experience and knowledge to accurately understand that person perspective. However if one is able to undergo similar experiences they are more likely to have a more accurate understanding of the perspective they are reading about.

IMO reading about something is not the same as really knowing about something firsthand.

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Posted: 28 October 2010 12:54 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 55 ]
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GdB - 28 October 2010 06:31 AM

True. But to see your position in the grand scheme of things could help in seeing you at the size you are…

GdB

One’s position is still a matter of perception which may or may not have a lot to do with actuality.

I don’t worry to much about my position in the grade scheme of things because whatever I think it is I could still be wrong. I really have no idea what my words or actions could affect in the grand scheme of things.

I’m just going to go through life learning as much about it as I can so I can deal more effectively with the situations I run into and help other people as I can.

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Posted: 28 October 2010 08:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 56 ]
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GdB - 28 October 2010 05:56 AM
Write4U - 27 October 2010 01:40 PM

Is science (serious inquiry into the nature of the universe) or technology (use of gadgets) taking over? Seems to me that answer is technology, not science, that is replacing the human values and morals. The threat of science is only to the spiritualist who’s notions of the universe are slowly being debunked by science. But to the average technology user, scientific inquiry is usually limited to using the dial on a toaster to produce darker or lighter toast. Not much to do with morals or values. How could science compete for moral values, other than demanding intellectual honesty?

But what means taking over? How can technology replace human values and morals? Technology is all about means, not means.

And I do not feel my spiritualism is debunked by science, it is more the opposite.

I like this, ‘intellectual honesty’, but why does that not lead to a clearer separation of what science is, and can do, and ethics, aesthetics, and wisdom? In religion (meta)physics and ethics are intertwined, but now that we know better (‘no ought from an is’), we should be better in this, and recognise the oppressing elements of religion, based on false metaphysical presuppositions.

GdB

First, I apologize for not being more judicious in choice of words.

I’ll try to clarify,

With “Technology taking over”, I meant “drawing attention (preoccupation) away from theism, spiritualism, morals and values.”

Example: Native Americans, when fishing for salmon, traditionally would throw the very first catch back into the river. This was done in respect and gratitude to the river god for providing abundance. This simple act covered all four philosophical aspects. Theism and spiritualism expressed in the tithing and thanksgiving to the gods. Morals and values expressed in the recognition of the value of life as well as perhaps unintentional conservation practice.
Today however, fishing is done with sophisticated sonar, huge indiscriminating nets and a total disregard for conservation. And the value of the catch is counted in dollars, not with respect for the lives taken.

“Spiritualism” should have read “Religion” in reference to being debunked by science, and also in 2 previous posts, (W4U - 27 October 2010) “This depth of understanding and appreciation is seldom achieved by a “spiritualist”, who stops at the concept of a creator and is not interested or in awe of the actual creative and evolutionary processes” and “The threat of science is only to the “spiritualist” who’s notions of the universe are slowly being debunked by science”.

With “intellectual honesty” (itself a moral with great value) I meant exactly as you interpreted it.
Science is a discipline which demands rigorous intellectual and factual honesty, thus is not allowed to speculate into the spiritual.
Theoretical science (somewhat less restrictive) may well venture into the metaphysical. Speculation on the existence (being or condition) of such non-physical particles as bosons, time warps and tunneling, and other mathematical (non-physical) constructs of a possible TOE are allowed.
But I believe that both can provide at least the foundations for several moral or human values as well as debunk some theistic or even spiritual misunderstandings or misrepresentations of morals and values as they relate to the Physical and Metaphysical.

Example: The term “God” obviously cannot mean a physical being in science, it is a metaphor for a “metaphysical causality”, thus debunking most of the pomp and circumstance surrounding the practice of religion.
However, a metaphysical causality is not impossible in theoretical science, and the emotional value of contemplation, introspection and respect (even celebration) for the majesty of the Universe in a spiritual sense also has been proven beneficial in Psychology.

Lastly, religion has refined indoctrination and reinforcement of dogma into a science. After all they have had some 6000 years to hone the message. Thus we have the attempt to establish “Religion as Science”.

I don’t believe that Science (by its own restrictions) is allowed to become a Religion. But we do worship gadgets! Witness the 3 block long line-ups for the latest i-pod and the church next door having 3 worshippers praying. hmmm

p.s. Personally I see Science as Intellectual Discipline, not as Religion.

[ Edited: 29 October 2010 01:25 AM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 29 October 2010 02:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 57 ]
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Gnostikosis - 28 October 2010 08:53 AM

It’s what you don’t know that makes life exciting IMO. Once you come to understand something it’s no longer a mystery. Time to find the next challenge. For me to gain that sense of mystery, which to me is exciting, I need to be surprised by the magic. Not told how the magic works.

Spirituality is a way to relate to what you understand, as well to what you not understand, i.e. mystery. It has not directly to do with what is ‘out there’, or you think is ‘out there’. Spirituality exists in all world views, theistic, deistic or atheist. Mystery surely is a drive to understand, but has nothing to do with spirituality per se.

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Posted: 30 October 2010 03:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 58 ]
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Write4U - 28 October 2010 08:36 PM

With “Technology taking over”, I meant “drawing attention (preoccupation) away from theism, spiritualism, morals and values.”

I agree with this. Of course I do not regret that we are drawn away from theism, but I do with the others. It seems to me this fits the categories 3 and 4, i.e. scientism. It is the faith that science will be able to solve moral problems (3), only scientific facts count (4), and that spirituality must be based on some unscientific metaphysics. In this way one gives away the responsibility to what scientists say, and gives them credit to areas where they don’t know more than others. (Neurologists who say we should reform our juristic system based on their findings, as my favorite example, or evolutionists that ‘know’ that the right ethics can only be derived from what is good for our survival. Such scientists are not intelectually honest.). It is the end of critical thinking, or even of skepticism: “it is said by scientist, so it is correct”. Beware: I do not say the opposite: one can’t trust science at all. I am not a global warming denier!

Write4U - 28 October 2010 08:36 PM

But I believe that both can provide at least the foundations for several moral or human values as well as debunk some theistic or even spiritual misunderstandings or misrepresentations of morals and values as they relate to the Physical and Metaphysical.

I do not agree with the ‘spiritual’: as long as one sees spirituality in the domain of ‘relating to what you honest believe reality is’, there is no reason that spirituality cannot exist when you have a science based world view. That is in fact my position.

Write4U - 28 October 2010 08:36 PM

I don’t believe that Science (by its own restrictions) is allowed to become a Religion.

Science in itself is of course not a religion. But people can do as if it is a religion.

Write4U - 28 October 2010 08:36 PM

But we do worship gadgets! Witness the 3 block long line-ups for the latest i-pod and the church next door having 3 worshippers praying.

Nice observation! Even if it seems you regret the vanishing of religion… Don’t you think that spirituality and science (and gadgets!) can go together?

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Posted: 30 October 2010 04:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 59 ]
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GbD, Of course I do not regret that we are drawn away from theism, but I do with the others. It seems to me this fits the categories 3 and 4, i.e. scientism. It is the faith that science will be able to solve moral problems (3), only scientific facts count (4), and that spirituality must be based on some unscientific metaphysics. In this way one gives away the responsibility to what scientists say, and gives them credit to areas where they don’t know more than others. (Neurologists who say we should reform our juristic system based on their findings, as my favorite example, or evolutionists that ‘know’ that the right ethics can only be derived from what is good for our survival. Such scientists are not intelectually honest.). It is the end of critical thinking, or even of skepticism: “it is said by scientist, so it is correct”. Beware: I do not say the opposite: one can’t trust science at all. I am not a global warming denier!

I also attempted to remain impartial in my post, and thus I am not sure that your conclusion of this belonging in the scientism category is correct. I did not try to convey that a current trend is permanent, nor did I conclude that therefore science is the be all in the fashioning of morals and values. I indicated they could assist with empirical data that contradicts say, the value judgement of the deniers. Thus we are very much in the same corner. At no time did I say that any discipline of science had the authority to “meddle” in areas which were not specifically pertinent to the scientific facts of that discipline. (Neurologist advocating the abolishment of “shock therapy to drive out demons”)
Assertion from ignorance is no better than rejection from ignorance. Morals and values are not exempt from these considerations.
And IMO a spirituality (or deism) which is not in conflict with what is known as fact, and deepens one’s understanding and appreciation of the universe, has a perfectly legitimate role in human experience.

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Posted: 30 October 2010 11:24 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 60 ]
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GdB - 29 October 2010 02:04 AM

Spirituality is a way to relate to what you understand, as well to what you not understand, i.e. mystery. It has not directly to do with what is ‘out there’, or you think is ‘out there’. Spirituality exists in all world views, theistic, deistic or atheist. Mystery surely is a drive to understand, but has nothing to do with spirituality per se.

GdB

Sure, but then how does spirituality relate to science per se?

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