Science as a Religion

Science as a Religion

There has always been constant debates between religion and science. How did the universe actually come into existence? Are the events in our daily life only a matter of cause and effect or a Supreme Being/ God has predestined it for us? When it seems like the two stand on completely opposite sides of the spectrum, an article for Huffington Post by Henry Gee gave us a glimpse of something different. One of his sources, a science blogger named David Sloan, introduced the idea of Science as a Religion. Science as stated is a religion that worships truth as its God.

Based on the dictionary, religion is defined as “a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.”

Science in fact has a set of beliefs mostly focusing on facts that are hypothesized and proven through experiments. The problem is that truth does not require faith. Yes, Science has 10 million followers from different countries which is one of the main requirements to be considered as a world religion but what about the traditions which must be handed down from generation to generation? This religion that worships truth only concentrates on innovation. Some facts that have been found decades ago are replaced or completely falsified.

The article comments on how religion is easier to understand than science. In religion, the truth in scriptures is held to be absolute and beyond question. Science is the complete opposite. It is not about truth, but doubt; not about knowledge, but ignorance; not about revealed facts, but uncertainties.

I believe that Science can be something a person could follow but not worship as a God. For me, A God is something you have complete faith in even though he is not proven to be true. The scriptures are our evidence, traditions like Sunday masses became our way of life and the Gods became our leader. Facts are hypothesized, experimented, proven to be true. After all those processes, the world evolves and these can only be true for a period of time. Scripture have lived on for a long term. To equate Science with religion for me is a bad call.

Can we really consider Science as a Religion? What aspects of Science can overlap with that of Religion?




2 thoughts on “Science as a Religion

  1. I certainly agree with your argument as to why Science should not be regarded as a “religion” but I feel inclined to argue that the two are more similar than the interpretation you present because they are both practices in understanding and making sense of life.

    Like you said, Science has over 10 million followers world-wide but what exactly do these “followers” do? Well, they practice Science just as Religion is practiced by it’s followers. They both extensively study the evidence of their practice and attempt to answer questions from it in order to understand life itself. You make a solid argument in that Science does not carry any source of tradition which exemplifies that it is not a practice of a set of beliefs, however because it focuses on innovation it is always looking to improve it’s own flaws. World Religions are so deep in historical influence that they tend not to make dramatic change but do eventually understand that change in belief and interpretation is necessary in terms of adapting to modern day society. Thus Science and Religion are both on the same scale in terms of trying to identify flaws which are misunderstood and correct or improve their understanding.

    Their is a massive difference in the two though. Science doesn’t just attempt to understand life, but also what comes after it, which cannot be explained by undeniable fact, but rather belief. It calls upon it’s disciples to hold faith in it’s teachings and to ultimately trust that they understand the true path into the afterlife. Science has neither this or any sort of worship. It is not based on trust or faith in something greater but rather wishes to prove and improve the idea that their is no greater power beyond logic and reasoning.

    Conclusively, I do agree that the two should not be equated but I also personally believe that the two hold similarities in that they are both centered around understanding. Throughout known history, society has always made a large gap between these two practices which appears to be directly because they contradict one another, yet they both just want to understand life and make sense of it. Whether it be through experimental theory in physics or Sunday Worship, Science and Religion both attempt to broaden their understandings and promote them onto the world and it’s inhabitants.

  2. I have to agree with your conclusion to the article in that science is not a religion. My main reason being in terms of how religions are identified as focusing on the divine or trans-divine in Ninian Smarts definition of religion and the sacred which is in the definition of religion from Emile Durkheim. Sciences negate any ideas of there being a god or any form of higher powers in order to come up with explanations of events that can be proved and are feasible. I really liked that you brought up scriptures and texts followed in religion are fixed, this further proves science is not a religion because science is always evolving and new discoveries are made disapproving the old. In conclusion I believe science is not a religion but a field of study that gives you a way of interpreting religion which in many cases is an objection of religions; the same as the fields of philosophy, history, or sociology can affect your outlook on religions.

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