The Role of Science in Religion
To debate on the exclusivity of science and religion is like to argue on the very existence of man and question about everything we have in our world - The Role of Science in Religion introduction. With the concept of science, suddenly we are at a loss with who we really are and how things evolved with us. Man has learned to live with the belief that we are guided by a supreme force and we are part of the living earth as it coexisted with this force. But since man has learned to discover things in his own way, he also began to doubt about his creation and the things around him. His outlook towards his creation, the survival of earth and his environment changed and almost doubt about his faith. Few of us even questioned the words within the Bible as against what science is trying to show us. Although we understand that religion came first before science, the beginning of the so called “awakening” of man has made us to create indifference and oppositions towards religion and God.
The major assumption of science particularly the discovery on the Theory of Evolution has changed the perception on religion not only on the existence of God but also the creation of all living things on earth. Does this mean that science undermines the belief in God and has science replaced religion? Scientists say science can explain everything while religion certainly cannot elucidate how things really work. But although it may seem that science can prove many things through careful studies, religion however does work on a spiritual level where man obtains his source of power through faith. Therefore science cannot provide the spiritual convenience of man and so man cannot rely on science for his spiritual completeness.
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Still, scholars put arguments on why religion cannot be replaced by science because accordingly not everything in the universe is explainable by science. If that is the case, then it is sufficient to believe that these things were especially made by someone who knows better. For example, if we study the universal constants that are within the important parameters of our universe and look at the smallest measurable length, the rate of expansion and the gravitational constant, we could see that everything was put in their precise order and dimensions. The law of physics point out that if there would only be a fraction of indifference in the measurements of the parameters in our universe then collision will happen and will create a series of explosion and destruction (Ellis, 2004). This clearly explained that a higher being arranged everything in constant and proper order.
Isn’t it enough that only Earth was given the opportunity to provide life? Surely we cannot underestimate the reliability of science but it does not mean that every question can be answered scientifically. Science deals with the use of technology to know or understand the essence of the universe and everything that is within it but religion is the actual experience of man’s identity with that essence. Remember that true religion is also experimental as science because the religions we have today were founded from the set of beliefs, ideals and of philosophical views of our ancestors. If science derived its strength from experiments and experience, religion does the same only it is based on human spirituality and cohesiveness with human emotions.
Science and religion both have the same purpose in our lives. If we would look at them on a more cognizant point of view, we can say that science is religion without a heart while a religion is a science without a head. They are both of philosophical understanding with opposite approaches. They also have the same task in expressing what is inexpressible so that others may learn it (Singh, 2008). Therefore these two principles are destined to empower man and achieve his greatness.
Noted that almost all people are within the cover of religion and because of this, religion and science must not be seen as two different worlds because they can both provide solutions to the problem of man. Science can make man smarter but religion will give him his wisdom because he will act according to the principle of goodness wanted by God. Let us also remember that the man who literally conceptualized the “Theory of Evolution”, Charles Darwin who married a religious woman named Emma Wedgewood on January 29, 1839 also doubted the existence God but in their 43 years of marriage, Emma did not influence Darwin to be converted but instead supported him in his field because she knows as a man of science Darwin’s direction is to help mankind realized the mysteries of life. They never see eye-to-eye on the question of religion and the validity of science but they have truly accepted that what each of them truly understood then let it be respected. They have never separated until Darwin died in her arms on that fateful day of April 19, 1882. (Heiligman, 2009).
We now live on the 21st century and unlike during the last century, we never have to argue the opposability of science and religion as they coexist today on the same world. We have learned to accept that without the other we may never be complete. Religions have survived the test of times and have saved us in living it out against the odds. On the other hand, science is a young venture of man to gain knowledge with what God has given him. Therefore we can say that religion supporting science studies is one honorable way of showing significance to God and the things He gave us.
Ellis, G. (2004). Has Science Replaced Religion? Retrieved from http://www.philosophytalk.org/pastShows/ScienceandReligion.htm
Heiligman, D. (2009). The Darwin’s Marriage of Science, Religion. Retrieved from http://www.businessmirror.com.ph/home/science/5749-the-darwins-marriage-of-science-religion.html
Singh, G. (2008). How Science and Religion Come Together. Retrieved from http://www.mrsikhnet.com/index.php/2008/01/31/