What if…just what if…BOTH science and religion could have a seat at the table? Along with common sense. Let’s invite them too.
With the recent SCOTUS abortion ruling, this image and ones similar to it are being shared all over social media, along with the general phrase “separation of church and state.” Implying that religion has infiltrated the government and it MUST be rooted OUT.
In terms of abortion. Science and religion are not in conflict. I actually don’t think science and religion are in competition, as science usually points back to intelligent design, but I digress. “The science” in the case of abortion simply provides a factual foundation to which a moral standard is applied, religious or otherwise.
Science proves it’s a developing, living human being, with unique DNA, a heartbeat and the ability to feel pain. Religion then takes the scientific data and applies a moral principle to it in which to make decisions and live by. “Religion” says killing an innocent human being is wrong, therefore it concludes that abortion is also wrong.
But even without religion, most people abide by the same moral standard – murder of an innocent human is immoral. The true issue is twofold. One that some people are adhering their moral standard without exception while others are not. And two, some people are just being willfully ignorant, rejecting both science and moral code.
Science really has no opinion at all on abortion, or any other ethical dilemma for that matter, as it does not provide moral guidance. Every person gets that guidance from somewhere else…
So pretending we can just make “science based” decisions about everything with no external moral input is absolutely ridiculous. And we if require a worldview or morals to make decisions, where do those come from? And which ones are allowed in the public and political sphere?
Which brings me…back to this image…
First of all. I adore that this drawing compares science and religion. Science is no longer a pursuit of truth in our culture. It’s become an ideology. Or perhaps more accurately…an idology…something to be revered, worshipped, and followed like an instruction manual. The notion of following “the science” has unfortunately become more and more like a religious cult. Especially over the last 2 years. (I’ll end this post on that note).
Here, they’re finally saying that out loud, science is the belief system that is allowed in the public and political sphere.
The idea seems to be that science is so infallible and so trustworthy it should be the guiding principle in shaping our society and government. Meanwhile, we’re expected to ask no questions when “the science” changes or contradicts itself or suddenly forgets what a woman is.
Second. What’s fascinating about this cartoonish depiction (and this way of thinking in general) is the notion that our founding fathers not only wanted to keep religion out of the government but also wanted “the science” as a guide. As depicted by science being invited to the public square while religion is locked out.
Oddly, science isn’t mentioned in the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution, but God is. That’s awkward.
Lastly, suggesting science should give us our guiding principles is misusing and elevating science well beyond its definition, design and purpose. Science is merely facts & knowledge OR more commonly the methodology by which to study something and gain facts & knowledge. NO ONE, not one single person, uses science to generate their standards of morality, right vs wrong, good vs evil. That is beyond the power of scientific study. Although I’m convinced some people think is telling them what to do or think. In reality, they are simply applying their moral standard TO scientific data.
I think this is where we have a lot of people are screaming past each other. One side is shouting FOLLOW THE SCIENCE!!! While the other side, is saying, what are you talking about, science is data, not directions for how to live?
Science doesn’t dictate how we see the world or how we make choices, it’s simply information. It’s your worldview and morality that dictate what you do with the information. Science can have a seat at the table but it’s not a leader to be followed.
Everyone has a worldview and sense of morality regardless of their religious affiliation or lack thereof.
And everyone uses their worldview and morality to guide their lives and shape the world around them.
Of course everyone wants their worldview and morality to be the most widely accepted and implemented culturally.
Some want this more than others and some push theirs more than others, sure.
But an atheist wants their worldview to shape culture just as much as a Christian does.
Saying that one is allowed to participate in shaping society and the other is not “because separation of church and state” is not only discriminatory and intolerant, but also ignorant of the intent of the First Amendment, ignorant of the Declaration of Independence and ignorant of country’s founding.
A religious person does not simply recognize or practice their belief systems while only in a particular building any more than an atheist does theirs. An atheist is an atheist at the grocery store, home, work, school…and they see the world through those beliefs wherever they go. Just like a person of any particular religion would do.
Why is it ok for an atheist to push their moral beliefs on society, but not a Christian?
I’ll end by saying…the “science belongs here” while pointing to public buildings is deeply disturbing to me, as does the church being behind a wall obviously. I’m not saying science DOESN’T belong at all, but what passes for “science” these days are literal lies and leftist ideologies. It’s not science…it’s much much much closer to religion than people want to acknowledge. But that’s another post for another time.