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Introduction for Non-Muslims
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Posted on Thu, Apr 13, 2006 21:55

Do science and religion harmonise?

The clash between science and religion

The churches had been put into an embarrassing position in the late Middle Ages when their doctrines were contradicted by the discoveries of the Renaissance and the Age of Enlightenment/Reason. The earth was prov?n to be a ball whereas the Catholic Church had been convinced it was flat and that the sun and the moon were supposed to be turning around it, a geocentric view (Figure 4) that was contradicted by science as well. The church sent many astronomers to death, tortured them or put them on trial during the period of the Inquisition (Figure 5) and tortured others, among them eminent pioneers such as Tyco Brahe and Gallileo Galilei (Picture 3 and 4):

Picture 3 and 4. Tycho Brahe (left) was persecuted and Galileo Gallilei was forced to neglect his own views by the church during the period of the Inquisition in Italy because their scientifically correct findings did not match with the geocentric views of the clerics. Johannes Kepler was an assistant of Tycho Brahe and the first one to be accepted by the church in Germany. Giordano Bruno died for his scientifically correct views.

Tycho Brahe

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Posted on Thu, Apr 13, 2006 21:54

But since the end of the last and the beginning of this century there seems to be a trend among prominent scientists to deny the existence of God. From a religious point of view, this can be explained with the increasing specialisation that these academics suffer from. This is possibly due to an immense amount of knowledge they have to cope with. So crossthinking, networking and multi-disciplinary learning and teaching have become a difficult task. The answer might be an accumulation of knowledge and the practice of interdisciplinary thinking. Comparing and communicating is the root for the integration of knowledge and the achievement of true progress and harmony.

Also the academic pressure that lies on individuals of high qualification is a reason for their official denial of any divine being. Religious belief is being ridiculed more and more. Still, even atheistic doctrines, such as a report published by the American "National Academy of Sciences" in 1998 that deals with the teaching of evolution in public school begins with the following words: "Whether God exists or not is a question about which science is neutral," see Scientific American, September 1999, Page 81, "Scientists and Religion in America").
A hot debate is going on between Science and Religion in the USA. The positions are so controversial that some schools are defending their religious doctrines by strictly prohibiting the teaching of the Theory of Evolution, creationists and evolutionists oppose each other and do not intend to compromise (see New Scientist, 21st August 1999, No 2200, Page 4, "Don't mention Darwin").

Where scientific knowledge ends, theological philosophy starts and claims the existence of God and therewith divine retribution. A lot of mischief has been done in the name of God and many people still suffer. Why does that happen? Is science better or religion? Which is more beneficial for mankind?



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Posted on Thu, Apr 13, 2006 21:52

Picture 2. Charles Darwin (1809-1895), the founder of the Theory of Evolution didn't deny the existence of God, as the church and many of his followers and neo-Darwinists claim. As a theologian and Biologist he stated clearly: "I have never denied the existence of God. I believe that the Theory of Evolution is absolutely compatible with the belief in God. The fact that it is impossible to prov? or grasp that the amazing and above every measure beautiful universe as well as mankind ?ame into being by coincidence seem to be the main evidence for the existence of God."

Picture 2. Charles Darwin (1809-1895)

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Posted on Thu, Apr 13, 2006 21:51

Picture 1. Albert Einstein (1879-1955), the very founder of the General Theory of Relativity, believed in God. He stated: "Every serious scientist must possess a type of religious feeling, because he cannot imagine, that the extremely minute connections, which he is observing, are being thought by him for the first time. In the universe, which is impossible to grasp, an eternally superior consciousness is being revealed. -The common idea that I am atheist is based on a big error. The one who reads this out of my scientific theories has hardly been able to grasp them?"

Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

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Posted on Thu, Apr 13, 2006 21:49

Figure 3. 14 Billion years of universe


Scientists have never been able to prov? the existence of God, nor have they prov?n that he doesn't exist. In fact, the greatest scientists have been firm believers in God (Ernst Frankenberger, "Gottbekenntnisse Grosser Naturforscher", 14te Auflage, 1989, Johannes-Verlag, D-5485 Leutendorf, ISBN 3-7794-0553-9.) It is surprising to hear that people like Heisenberg, Newton, Maxwell, Planck, Einstein (Picture 1), Schroedinger, Darwin (Picture 2) and Rutherford were among them. These are the most eminent physicists, chemists and biologists of the West. The leading philosophers, poets and artists can be counted in as well.

Here is a short passage with statements made by the very scientists who have influenced physics and biology of this century in a most challenging way. They have in fact shaped the whole Age of modern technology and thinking: Albert Einstein, by first postulating the General Theory of Relativity and Charles Darwin, by first stating the Theory of Evolution. Both believed in God but opposed constitutional or clerical systems like the church. A Jew and a Christian:

Picture 1. Albert Einstein (1879-1955), the very founder of the General Theory of Relativity, believed in God. He stated: "Every serious scientist must possess a type of religious feeling, because he cannot imagine, that the extremely minute connections, which he is observing, are being thought by him for the first time. In the universe, which is impossible to grasp, an eternally superior consciousness is being revealed. -The common idea that I am atheist is based on a big error. The one who reads this out of my scientific theories has hardly been able to grasp them?"

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Posted on Thu, Apr 13, 2006 21:48

Do scientists believe in God?

There still seems to be place for metaphysical and transcendental thinking even though the Hubble-telescope (Figure 2) is looking into 14 billion years of universal history (Figure 3).

Figure 2. The HubbleTelescope

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Posted on Thu, Apr 13, 2006 21:44

Scientific progress?

In our modern society we have made enormous progress through technological inventions and science is making more and more discoveries. Spaceflights are being planned to Mars and satellites scroll the orbit enabling us to communicate ever faster and via computers even more effectively. Submarines dive to the deepest parts of the oceans. We are reproducing living beings by cloning them. It seems as if we could almost do everything ourselves. But at the same time the ozone layer is disappearing due to atmospheric pollution (Figure 1), the polecaps are melting and whole species and biotopes are dying out. Maybe that is why many would like to have hope and believe in a life after the present one. An afterlife; a paradise. But is the belief in God still possible? Is it reasonable at all? Is it beneficial?

Figure 1. A failure of science and technology, the ozone-hole in an infrared image

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Posted on Thu, Apr 13, 2006 21:42

Is there a God?

Why the question?

The question always arises whether there is a God or not. Does he exist? Is there a purpose behind the universe and our life? Each and every discussion, which is not bound to any particular subject, automatically leads to this topic sooner or later and it has an adventurous fascination to it. Whether it is a long summer night on the veranda or even during controversial scientific congresses dominated by atheists ("Is Science Killing the Soul?" with Richard Dawkins and Steven Pinker by the Guardian newspaper in 1999).



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