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Name one question that religion can answer

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Bottle
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Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Bottle » Thu May 28, 2009 5:30 am

Francis Collins, former head of the human genome project and an an evangelical Christian, recently made the following statement:

"Although there is clearly an overlap between science and religion, neither is an exhaustive source of truth. That is, there are still certain questions that should only be addressed by science or religion."

This is a relatively common idea that I've heard many times before, yet nobody ever seems able to tell me WHICH questions are the ones that religion is better at answering. I can't think of any.

So I put it to the forum.

Name one question that religion can answer that science cannot.
"Until evolution happens like in pokemon I'll never accept your 'evidence'!" -Ifreann
"Well, excuuuuuuse me, feminist." -Ende

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Ayumutopia
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Ayumutopia » Thu May 28, 2009 5:32 am

What is the cube root of Jesus expressed in the form of intrepretive dance? I don't think science can get that one
Last edited by Ayumutopia on Thu May 28, 2009 5:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Last Hope
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Last Hope » Thu May 28, 2009 5:33 am

Well the classic is "Why are we here?"

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Cabra West
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Cabra West » Thu May 28, 2009 5:34 am

I think you're looking at it from the wrong angle :

There's no question at all that religion can answer to a satisfactory scientific standard.
But then, neither can philosophy, really. Or art.
"I was walking along the bank of a stream when I saw a mother otter with her cubs. A very endearing sight, and as I watched, the mother otter dived into the water and came up with a plump salmon, which she subdued and dragged on to a half-submerged log. As she ate it, while of course it was still alive, the body split and I remember to this day the sweet pinkness of its roes as they spilled out, much to the delight of the baby otters who scrambled over themselves to feed on the delicacy. One of nature’s wonders: mother and children dining upon mother and children. And that’s when I first learned about evil. It is built in to the very nature of the universe. If there is any kind of supreme being, I told myself, it is up to all of us to become his moral superior."

Lord Vetinari

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Allanea
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Allanea » Thu May 28, 2009 5:35 am

Well, a scientific standard cannot really be applied to things outside the realm of natural science.
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Fictions
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Fictions » Thu May 28, 2009 5:35 am

You are thinking about it the wrong way, religion is what answers the "why" questions and science answers the "how"

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Ayumutopia
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Ayumutopia » Thu May 28, 2009 5:35 am

I got another. Why didn't God make gravity so we fall upwards?

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Cabra West
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Cabra West » Thu May 28, 2009 5:36 am

Fictions wrote:You are thinking about it the wrong way, religion is what answers the "why" questions and science answers the "how"


Not really... the question "Why do apples fall to the ground" is something that all major religions so far have struggled with.
"I was walking along the bank of a stream when I saw a mother otter with her cubs. A very endearing sight, and as I watched, the mother otter dived into the water and came up with a plump salmon, which she subdued and dragged on to a half-submerged log. As she ate it, while of course it was still alive, the body split and I remember to this day the sweet pinkness of its roes as they spilled out, much to the delight of the baby otters who scrambled over themselves to feed on the delicacy. One of nature’s wonders: mother and children dining upon mother and children. And that’s when I first learned about evil. It is built in to the very nature of the universe. If there is any kind of supreme being, I told myself, it is up to all of us to become his moral superior."

Lord Vetinari

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Lunatic Goofballs
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Lunatic Goofballs » Thu May 28, 2009 5:37 am

"What is a good pretext I can use to kill brown people in far off lands?"
Life's Short. Munch Tacos.

“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!”
Hunter S. Thompson

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Bottle
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Bottle » Thu May 28, 2009 5:38 am

Last Hope wrote:Well the classic is "Why are we here?"

Science has answered that question far more thoroughly, and with far more testable evidence, than every religion in the history of this planet put together.

It's just that Science doesn't include "because some magical being really loves us a whole bunch" in the answer. Also, the scientific answer to that question is long and dry and requires years of study to understand, and most people would rather hear a story about some naked people taking dietary advice from a snake.
"Until evolution happens like in pokemon I'll never accept your 'evidence'!" -Ifreann
"Well, excuuuuuuse me, feminist." -Ende

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Direnia
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Direnia » Thu May 28, 2009 5:38 am

Well, I know a question to which not even religion can answer:

Why did someone put together something as absurd and mad as the Zeitgeist film?

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Ayumutopia
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Ayumutopia » Thu May 28, 2009 5:39 am

Lunatic Goofballs wrote:"What is a good pretext I can use to kill brown people in far off lands?"


Ding! Thats the correct answer. You win a taco flavoured pie! To the face! Splat!

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Kadagai
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Kadagai » Thu May 28, 2009 5:42 am

Bottle wrote:
Last Hope wrote:Well the classic is "Why are we here?"

Science has answered that question far more thoroughly, and with far more testable evidence, than every religion in the history of this planet put together.

It's just that Science doesn't include "because some magical being really loves us a whole bunch" in the answer. Also, the scientific answer to that question is long and dry and requires years of study to understand, and most people would rather hear a story about some naked people taking dietary advice from a snake.


I think you're mistaken. Science has answered how we are here; it hasn't and simply cannot answer the why. Unless you can show me a link as to how science explains this.

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Bottle
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Bottle » Thu May 28, 2009 5:42 am

Allanea wrote:Well, a scientific standard cannot really be applied to things outside the realm of natural science.

True. But, remember, we're talking about ANSWERS. Not guesses, not assumptions, but actual answers.

I can ask, "Why are we here?" and any idiot can make up a story about gods or fairies or giant turtles to tell me about why humans exist. But that's not an ANSWER, that's just a story, a guess, a shot in the dark. Their reply does not have anything to do with reality, and it provides me with precisely zero useful information to help me better understand myself and my universe.

Religions can give "answers" in that regard, but really, what is the point of such "answers"?
"Until evolution happens like in pokemon I'll never accept your 'evidence'!" -Ifreann
"Well, excuuuuuuse me, feminist." -Ende

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Cabra West
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Cabra West » Thu May 28, 2009 5:42 am

Lunatic Goofballs wrote:"What is a good pretext I can use to kill brown people in far off lands?"


Actually, that's been answered by both :

Science : Because the European (Caucasian, white, pick your favourite) race is superior to all others, and it's therefore its responsibility to conquer and rule those inferior races. For their own good.

Religion : Because they've never heard of (insert favourite deity here), and we need to tell them so they can save their souls by obeying our book. For their own good.
"I was walking along the bank of a stream when I saw a mother otter with her cubs. A very endearing sight, and as I watched, the mother otter dived into the water and came up with a plump salmon, which she subdued and dragged on to a half-submerged log. As she ate it, while of course it was still alive, the body split and I remember to this day the sweet pinkness of its roes as they spilled out, much to the delight of the baby otters who scrambled over themselves to feed on the delicacy. One of nature’s wonders: mother and children dining upon mother and children. And that’s when I first learned about evil. It is built in to the very nature of the universe. If there is any kind of supreme being, I told myself, it is up to all of us to become his moral superior."

Lord Vetinari

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Fictions
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Fictions » Thu May 28, 2009 5:42 am

Cabra West wrote:
Fictions wrote:You are thinking about it the wrong way, religion is what answers the "why" questions and science answers the "how"


Not really... the question "Why do apples fall to the ground" is something that all major religions so far have struggled with.


Depends how you look at god, its easy to answer if you think of god as a creator who then went off to watch from a distance and does not interfere, you know the type who created all the science bits like forces, evolution ect. if that is the case why do apples fall from the ground becomes, because god made gravity as a way of keeping stuff from drifting away, then science goes on to explain how gravity works.

(I am an Atheist by the way XD)

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Chumblywumbly
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Chumblywumbly » Thu May 28, 2009 5:43 am

Bottle wrote:Name one question that religion can answer that science cannot.

There's certainly some questions that science cannot answer; 'what is good?', being the obvious example.

Now, I'd contend that religion couldn't answer this either, but some would.
I suffer, I labour, I dream, I enjoy, I think; and, in a word, when my last hour strikes, I shall have lived.

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Cabra West
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Cabra West » Thu May 28, 2009 5:45 am

Chumblywumbly wrote:
Bottle wrote:Name one question that religion can answer that science cannot.

There's certainly some questions that science cannot answer; 'what is good?', being the obvious example.

Now, I'd contend that religion couldn't answer this either, but some would.


Hmm... if you consider it on an evolutionary basis, and taking into account social dynamics in groups of social animals, I think science can come up with a fairly satisfactory answer...
"I was walking along the bank of a stream when I saw a mother otter with her cubs. A very endearing sight, and as I watched, the mother otter dived into the water and came up with a plump salmon, which she subdued and dragged on to a half-submerged log. As she ate it, while of course it was still alive, the body split and I remember to this day the sweet pinkness of its roes as they spilled out, much to the delight of the baby otters who scrambled over themselves to feed on the delicacy. One of nature’s wonders: mother and children dining upon mother and children. And that’s when I first learned about evil. It is built in to the very nature of the universe. If there is any kind of supreme being, I told myself, it is up to all of us to become his moral superior."

Lord Vetinari

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Bottle
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Bottle » Thu May 28, 2009 5:48 am

Kadagai wrote:
Bottle wrote:
Last Hope wrote:Well the classic is "Why are we here?"

Science has answered that question far more thoroughly, and with far more testable evidence, than every religion in the history of this planet put together.

It's just that Science doesn't include "because some magical being really loves us a whole bunch" in the answer. Also, the scientific answer to that question is long and dry and requires years of study to understand, and most people would rather hear a story about some naked people taking dietary advice from a snake.


I think you're mistaken. Science has answered how we are here; it hasn't and simply cannot answer the why. Unless you can show me a link as to how science explains this.

See, again, you're looking for a "why" that includes some kind of conscious purpose. But that's just an assumption on your part; you want to hear that there is one objective purpose for our existence, whether or not that is actually the case.

You clearly don't want to know why we came to be, because if you did then you'd have long since familiarized yourself with the centuries of scientific information on that subject, most of which are currently covered in introductory biology classes. Science has long since explained why humans exist, and indeed has explained a ton about why we have the form we do, down to why we have fingernails and why we can't see a large portion of the light spectrum. The fact that you either don't understand or don't like these answers doesn't change the fact that they exist.
"Until evolution happens like in pokemon I'll never accept your 'evidence'!" -Ifreann
"Well, excuuuuuuse me, feminist." -Ende

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Bottle
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Bottle » Thu May 28, 2009 5:50 am

Chumblywumbly wrote:
Bottle wrote:Name one question that religion can answer that science cannot.

There's certainly some questions that science cannot answer; 'what is good?', being the obvious example.

Now, I'd contend that religion couldn't answer this either, but some would.

You're right, religion can't answer that question either.

I ask, "What is good?"

A Christian can answer, "Well, according to my interpretation of the faith I have chosen to follow, this is the nature of good."

Of course, Science can provide that EXACT SAME ANSWER. "According to X faith, this is the nature of good." Ta-da.

In neither case, however, are you provided with any reason why that particular definition of Good is any closer to the truth than any of the millions of other definitions. You're just expected to take it on faith, which is NOT an answer.
"Until evolution happens like in pokemon I'll never accept your 'evidence'!" -Ifreann
"Well, excuuuuuuse me, feminist." -Ende

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Land of the Trolls
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Land of the Trolls » Thu May 28, 2009 5:50 am

Kadagai wrote:
Bottle wrote:
Last Hope wrote:Well the classic is "Why are we here?"

Science has answered that question far more thoroughly, and with far more testable evidence, than every religion in the history of this planet put together.

It's just that Science doesn't include "because some magical being really loves us a whole bunch" in the answer. Also, the scientific answer to that question is long and dry and requires years of study to understand, and most people would rather hear a story about some naked people taking dietary advice from a snake.


I think you're mistaken. Science has answered how we are here; it hasn't and simply cannot answer the why. Unless you can show me a link as to how science explains this.


Why are we here? Obviously, we're a cosmic accident. There is no greater purpose. We're just a bunch of chemicals that got complex enough to think.

Gee, I wonder why many people like religions answers better? :lol:

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Khadgar
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Khadgar » Thu May 28, 2009 5:52 am

"Why does God appear to hate us?".

Religion could answer that. I hear it's because we're all filthy sinners who make Jesus cry.

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Kadagai
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Kadagai » Thu May 28, 2009 5:53 am

Land of the Trolls wrote:
Why are we here? Obviously, we're a cosmic accident. There is no greater purpose. We're just a bunch of chemicals that got complex enough to think.

Gee, I wonder why many people like religions answers better? :lol:


Of course this answer isn't very scientific; it belongs in the realm of philosophy.

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Lunatic Goofballs
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Lunatic Goofballs » Thu May 28, 2009 5:54 am

Khadgar wrote:"Why does God appear to hate us?".

Religion could answer that. I hear it's because we're all filthy sinners who make Jesus cry.


He's just jealous of our tacos.
Life's Short. Munch Tacos.

“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!”
Hunter S. Thompson

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Khadgar
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Re: Name one question that religion can answer

Postby Khadgar » Thu May 28, 2009 5:57 am

Lunatic Goofballs wrote:
Khadgar wrote:"Why does God appear to hate us?".

Religion could answer that. I hear it's because we're all filthy sinners who make Jesus cry.


He's just jealous of our tacos.


I figured it's because it's been two millenia since He got laid.

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