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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Are Science and God Opposing Belief Systems?

According to new research by Jesse Preston, a psychologist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, our unconscious attitudes toward science and God can be manipulated, and these attitudes appear to be in automatic opposition to each other when it comes to answering the ultimate questions of reality (like the origin of life or how the universe began). In other words, when science is shown to provide valuable explanations of various phenomena, most people show a preference for science and a neutral or negative attitude toward God; when people use God as an ultimate explanation, they display more positive associations with God and a more negative attitude toward science.
"What is really intriguing is that the larger effect happens on the opposite belief," says Preston. "When God isn't being used to explain much, people have a positive attitude toward science. But when God is being used to account for many events—especially ... life, the universe, free will, these big questions—then somehow science loses its value." On the other hand, she adds, "people may have a generally positive view of science until it fails to explain the important questions. Then belief in God may be boosted to fill in the gap."
The study, which Preston conducted with Nicholas Epley, a professor of behavioral science at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, appears in the January 2009 issue of the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. —Heather Wax


John M said...

Debates over the origin of life and how the universe began are sterile from a spiritual viewpoint. When religious people get diverted into debates about creationism etc. they are demonstrating a shocking lack of faith. If God exists He must be here and pretty obvious. Religious people should point out the role of the spiritual in everyday life. (Take a look at http://ofaman.blogspot.com/ for a starter).

Anonymous said...

When Is God-Religion Discussable Scientifically

A. Re "God and Evolution Can Co-Exist, Scientist Insists"


- Is there/what is, in the quoted article, a definition of the article's "god" ?

- Specifically, is the article's "god" defined as a human artifact, or not ?
Repeating, with sincere respect:

If “god” is not defined/understood to be a human artifact, its concept is a human virtual reality artifact experienced only through sensory stimuli, and “god-science” is not scientifically discussable. Furthermore, in this case preoccupation with this subject within a scientific frameworks contributes to corrosion and corruption of science and scientism by manifesting or implying acceptance of virtual reality as reality.

Everything is discussable scientifically. No limit. But for scientific discussion the framework must be clearly defined. The totality of subjects that come under the classification "virtual" are not an exception. You can include in the discussion Pavlov and the modes and manners of exploiting virtuality in many areas and towards many ends...

B. "Evolutionary Biology Of Culture And Religion"


C. It's The AAAS That Promotes Religion In Science And In Law

The AAAS and its affiliates and equivalent organizations, i.e. all the Science Establishment Guilds, loudly and pseudoscientifically promote and "profoundly respect" the "spiritual religious domain" as A REAL domain, a domain separate from the REAL, science, domain. They do this both because, unbelievably, they actually believe it and as a politically powerful tool in promoting their power and state-public support.

Dov Henis

(Comments From The 22nd Century)

Life's Manifest