Jump to content

- - - - -

[News] God and Science: An Inner Conflict

  • Please log in to reply
2 replies to this topic

#1 Galapagos



  • Members
  • 626 posts

Posted 17 January 2009 - 11:22 AM

God and science are inherently at odds, or so goes the story with roots that reach back nearly 400 years to the Inquisition's trial of Galileo on suspicion of heresy.

The ongoing effort of U.S. creationists to inject doubt about evolution into science classrooms in public schools is an example of that conflict, not to mention the polarizing arguments over the decades offered by numerous members of the clergy, politicians, and some atheist scientists and scholars including Richard Dawkins.

Now a new study suggests our minds are conflicted, making it so we have trouble reconciling science and God because we unconsciously see these concepts as fundamentally opposed, at least when both are used to explain the beginning of life and the universe.

God and Science: An Inner Conflict | LiveScience

#2 Pyrotex


    Slaying Bad Memes

  • Members
  • 5,690 posts

Posted 17 January 2009 - 01:50 PM

I took a look at the linked website, and the description of the "experiment" that apparently concludes that there is something wired into our brains that prevents us from seeing both God and Science as valid explanations at the same time.

On the face of it, the "experiment" looks flawed.

Let's suppose that I show you a series of colored tiles and for each tile, you get to select:
Both Red and Green
Don't Know

Let's say I show you 100 tiles and you selected Red 44 times, Green 54 times and the Don't Know choice 2 times. Both Red and Green is chosen 0 times.

Now, can I conclude that your inability to make the 3rd choice more often is because your brain is hard-wired to be unable to hold the concepts Red and Green in your mind at the same time? This is all caused by deep-seated psychology? Or even by :hyper: OMG, brain-washing!

Maybe the art teachers have brain-washed our children so they can't believe in Red and Green at the same time!?!?!?!

Do you see how foolish this is?

#3 Galapagos



  • Members
  • 626 posts

Posted 21 January 2009 - 04:49 PM

I believe the problems are with the reporting, and not the study, which was published in the highly influential/cited Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. Explanation found here:
" “Ms. Yates’ article would have been clearer if a) it had explicitly described the evaluation task as classifying a positive or negative word as positive or negative, :confused: it had mentioned that those asked to “list six things that you think can explain or influence God” were a control group. Without these clarifications, a layperson attempting to analyze the argument could quickly become confused, especially when trying to leap from the experiment as described to the quoted conclusions of Dr. Preston.”"

The publication in full(only a couple short pages) is available here:

And better coverage can be found on the following blog(this blog post was reviewed/submitted via Researchblogging.org):
Epiphenom: God or science - but not both!

Sorry about the confusion!