November 6, 2006

[Science] The Ten-Foot Pole

Normally, I try to avoid talking about religion and religious topics. It's very difficult discussing what a person believes. That said, here is an item that does require some discussion. (Thanks to Sarkie for the link.)

First off, evidence of vestigal limbs on dolphins do exist as part of the fossil record. Evolution of dolphins has been researched on a regular basis. But that's besides the point. What I wanted to get to was this sentence...
Remember Jacob, just because something appears in a book that does not make it true.
I dislike the sheer amount of hypocrisy contained in that sentence when taken in the context of the entire reply. "I don't want you to agree with the bulk of scientific knowledge, so I want you to rely on this translation of a 2,000-year-old book instead, but I don't want you to trust what you read in books...except this one."

Science and faith should supplement each other, not supplant each other. A belief can lead to a theory, but a belief in and of itself is not a theory. Even members of the Vatican have stepped forward and said as much.

Please, believe what you want to believe. But please be willing to submit your beliefs to the same level of scrutiny that you submit the beliefs of others to. After all, I believe that there may be a religious tenet or two about this...

If you believe the data presented by science is incorrect, then by all means, go forth and construct an alternate theory, create an experiment to prove that theory, and then share the experiment and the results with the world. After all, until several hundred years ago, it was common knowledge that the sun revolved around the earth. (Some people still believe it.) If you can back it up and your experiment survives peer review, who knows?

1 comment:

Morgan said...

I always liked this quote by Dr. Ursula Goodenough: "Human consensus does not generate reality. Were it able to do so, the sun would have taken to orbiting the earth some time ago."