I am in the process of putting together a lesson about how science and religion are not esclusiotn. I have included the big bang theory as well as evolition, but can anyone thing of any other topics that are controversial to this issue?
Just so you know the Big Bang theory is a Catholic one. Human Cloning might be a good one
Many great scientists of the past and even some today are Catholic Priests.
Here are a few other topics that may be of interest because they pose questions of both our scientific and religious views. They may start some discussion and perhaps reveal uncertainties in both our religious and scientific presuppositions…
- Could there be life elsewhere in the universe? Would they need and receive ‘salvation’?
- Could there be other universes?
- What might be the origin of life (this is distinct from evolution from a common ancestral life form)?
- Might the big bang have been triggered by the collapse of a previously existing universe (this is the thesis of the renowned physicist Sir Roger Penrose’s book ‘cycles of time’)?
- What do we expect the fate of the universe to be?
- Can we use clinical research to test whether miracle healings occur today?
- Can we use the scientific method to test whether prayer changes the outcome of any situation?
- Does God break the laws of physics?
- If God has an influence on the physical realm can we use the scientific method to ascertain when/if this happens?
- Do visions teach us anything useful? What does psychology and religion say?
Will you be publishing your lesson here? I would dearly like to read it, if so.
What if Copernicus was wrong?
What if the theory of the heliocentric universe is fundamentally flawed?
I am looking forward to viewing this moving picture even if I will come to it will a high degree of skepticism.
I am not a scientist, although my father was an astronomer.
My take on the dichotomy is that science only explains what, not why.
For instance, there are three fundamental forces in Physics. Essentially, strong, weak and gravity. But science cannot explain why mass “creates” gravity. Or in fact why of anything else.
Just why is the speed of light what it is, and why can’t anything go faster? Why is life n earth carbon based, why not say, silver based? Silver is an element too.
Fundemental questions like that…
Here is a list, it would make a great start to research more.
Myths about the relationship between science and religion.
A good source or two . . .
, Galileo Goes to Jail and Other Myths about Science and Religion
David C. Lindberg & Michael Shank, eds., The Cambridge History of Science: Volume 2, Medieval Science.
excerpt from Introduction
Well, the following facts may help:
1.) Charles Darwin still believed in God, even after postulating his theory of evolution by natural selection. The degree of his theism is still disputed, but he was most certainly not an atheist. He was a Protestant at best and a Deist at worst.
2.) The creator of the Big Bang theory was a Catholic priest, The Rev. Msgr. Georges Lemaître. He actually had to convince Einstein that he was right, and after he succeeded, Einstein repetitively lauded the man as “[having] great things to show us”. After sitting in on one of Fr. Lemaître’s seminars, Einstein, dumbfounded, simply stated, “Very beautiful, very beautiful indeed.”
3.) Roger Bacon, a mediaeval Franciscan friar relying on translations of writings by Muslim intellectuals, was the first to postulate the scientific method as we know it today, a cycle of “observation, hypothesis, and experimentation”, and the need for “independent verification”. Bacon later became a close friend and scientific correspondent of Pope Clement IV.
Also do not forget Father Gregor Mendel, the father of modern genetics. He is a Franciscan friar and a pioneer in that field.
Ah, yes. Thank you for reminding me.
Also, 35 craters on the Moon are named after Catholic priest-scientists.
This article talks about how true science is not in conflict with Catholic church teaching - Evolution, big bang, etc
*]What does neuroscience tell us about the properties and functions of the soul?
*]What do genomic studies tell us about the deep history of humanity, and how does that intersect with our understanding of being created in the image and likeness of God?
*]Can speaking in tongues be analyzed with statistical information theory and/or quantitative linguistics to evaluate whether it produces sufficient information to represent a real language?
*]What does the circulation of the planetary core, which generates both the life-protecting Van Allen belts and life-destroying earthquakes, tell us about the problem of “natural evil”?
*]Does theistic teleology provide a better explanation of the origin and evolution of universe than the “Many Worlds” hypothesis?
*]How does a teleological understanding of cosmology treat phenomena such as the asymmetry of matter and antimatter in the universe, the randomness in cosmic microwave background radiation, and the necessity for supernovae to create the radioactive elements that heat our planet from within?
*]How do we integrate modern methods of historiography into our theological understanding of the history of pre-Christ Israel, the Biblical canon, and the Church after Christ?
*]What are the most effective means of evangelism?
I would be happy to post the notes that I use for the discussion.
Some additional topics that touch on science and religion:
Chimeras: The mixing of the genetic material of different species. I think it is only a matter of time before human DNA and that of apes are mixed and brought to full development.This is, of course, related to genetic engineering. Note the film Gattaca (1997).
Cloning: going beyond cloning, let’s say, of liver cells, to the full cloning of a human being. Large mammals have already been achieved.
In vitro fertilization leading to an artificial womb: Again, I think it is just a matter of time.
Acceptance of euthanasia: This is already being advocated by some bio-ethicists.
I added some links to some great looking Catholic posters on science.
Look toward the bottom.
Science today is viewed by the media as absolute fact even when it conflicts with itself. Nothing can be further than the truth. Science dealing with prehistory is mostly theory. Theory is an informed guess at best. The Atheists of today should at least allow Faith beliefs to be legitimate theories but they do not. One thing is for sure, Scientific theories change while the Bible stays the same. Scientist once guessed the Earth to be thousands of years old, then 10 thousand, then 100 thousand, and now in the billions. I’m sure the theory will change again once some new discovery is made.