Are the Values of Science and Religion Compatible?

2011-2012 Niles Lecture on Science and Religion from St. Lawrence University (reduced resolution) from North Country Public Radio on Vimeo.

The 2011-2012 Niles Lecture on Science and Religion from St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York. January 30, 2012. The topic discussed was, “Are the Values of Science and Religion Compatible?” Participants include SLU faculty members Aileen O’Donoghue, Karen Johnson, Laura Rediehs, Michael Greenwald and Aswini Pai.

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2 Responses to “Are the Values of Science and Religion Compatible?”

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  1. Pete Klein says:

    E=MC2 explains everything. It’s a lot like the definition of God who always was and always will be, the I am who am.
    Neither the existence of God nor the non existence of God can be proven for a simple reason. God is not a thing. Only things can be proven to exist or not exist. Very difficult to prove a negative.
    Religion is belief while science is knowledge, although scientific conclusions usually start out as a belief.
    Belief is what we do when we don’t know – and we need to remember thought is energy being emitted from gray matter, the brain.
    To a greater extent than we like to admit, religion, just like science, compartmentalizes our thoughts. We think in terms of black and white, right and wrong, either/or. But returning to E=MC2, we see a constant bleeding of one into the other. The spiritual is but a form of the material. Neither the spiritual nor the material could exist without the other.
    To steal from a song, “I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now, From up and down, and still somehow, It’s cloud illusions I recall, I really don’t know clouds, at all”

  2. Ken says:

    From the keyboard of Pete: “we need to remember thought is energy being emitted from gray matter, the brain”

    How about “thought is the result of the employment of energy, derived from glucose, by the brain”. Thought is not energy in that thought does not possess the properties of energy as defined by Physics: KE=mV^2/2, PE and heat. Living tissue does not produce energy it transforms energy contained in food into motion, heat and sometimes thought. Thought alone has never been scientifically demonstrated to produce either heat or motion.

    Perhaps you could elucidate the “bleeding” of religion into e=mc^2 wherein the difference in the total mass of two H molecules when combined in a nuclear furnace, usually a star, to form an He molecule is the mass times the speed of light squared which equates to the energy released in such a reaction. Perhaps my inability to follow your logic arises from the estimate by Cosmologists that the first stars formed when gravitational effects collapsed primarily hydrogen, with lesser amounts of helium and lithium, into a hot sufficiently dense mass to initiate the H+H—>He +energy reaction. This occurred a couple of hundred million to a billion years after the Big Bang which was 8.5-9.5 billion years before the Earth was formed and about 14 billion years before man came along with his spiritual concepts. These concepts which appeared, what, 6000 years ago are wagging the universe which appeared about 13.8 billion years ago? No.