I keep a lot of very religious friends around because I really enjoy debating topics. As a scientist, I feel it helps keep the mind sharp and lucid regarding understanding the world around us. However, I am always puzzled by other scientists who are religious, very active and strongly religious or even mildly. I feel this world view is untenable, and does not match with the ideas of science, scientific process or a functional and pragmatic way of viewing the world or interacting with the world.

I recently had a discussion with a geneticist who was arguing that the human mind cannot have been by 'accident' (of course, if you put things in an evolutionary perspective, accidents cause changes and environments enhance positive accidents and destroy damaging accidents) and that logic and reason cannot come from chemical acitivities (as a neuroscientist, I of course wonder if the fact she forgot the electrical properties of the brain hampers her argument, but i let it slide) and that they only come through god.


I just wanted to point out some poor world views that stem from this, and why i dislike organized religions so much. First, mice, fruit flies, chimps, dogs, prarie dogs, snakes and fish all do many many many things that are logical and rational when problem solving. there are cases where birds bend wires to make tools to unlock cages to get to food, or chimps using machinery or cuttlefish solving mazes.... is god controlling all of them through their 'chemical' brains? Also, are we interfering in god's plans for humanity or animals, when we give psychotropic drugs as medication or take them ourselves? It seems a bit unfair that god would chemically unbalance someone to the point where they will kill themselvs or others in a bout of depression, mania, psychosis, anxiety, hysteria or during a hallucination doesnt it? but of course, you all know this or you wouldnt be on this blog...

the other poor argument is that this dualism brings out the 'god of the gaps' deal. now, i'm ok with this argument, b/c every day that goes by, 'god' has less and less room to hide as science brings understanding to topics previously not understood. However, it is a foolish argument, and worth mentioning how foolish it is.

Anyway, i just wanted to express this confusion as my first post. hopefully future ones will be more well organized and understood. adios!

Views: 1

Tags: dualism, gaps, god, of, the

Comment by Pam on February 10, 2009 at 7:41am
"there are cases where birds bend wires to make tools to unlock cages to get to food, or chimps using machinery or cuttlefish solving mazes...."

It's even more compelling that they perform these tasks outside their natural environment. Doesn't adapting to a new environment prove evolution is at work rather than god?
Comment by Gregor Mendel on February 10, 2009 at 10:38am
I certainly hope so. and I bet these animals do these behaviors all the time, just there are not enough people watching to catalogue all of them! did you see that video of the bird fishing? It was spreading bread crumbs by the water's edge to attract fish, then eating the fish, picking up the crumbs, moving to a new spot and fishing again. How amazing is that!


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