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3 years ago  ::  Apr 05, 2012 - 6:05PM #31
vra
Posts: 6,403

Apr 5, 2012 -- 5:24PM, arielg wrote:


    Apr 5, 2012 -- 11:30AM, arielg wrote:


    There is no conflict.  Science studies the world "out there".  Religion studies the world "in here"
When both worlds become one and the same, there is understanding.




Both deal with the "in here", ...



Studying the world of the atom or the universe or how plants grow, does not necessarily bring understanding about who or what we are or why we live.



...and what caused our universe is just one of many examples that could be used, so let me pick another: is there a heaven, reincarnation/rebirth, nirvana, or moksha?



These are spiritual states, "in here". Not objective, out there.



... Since these deal with what happens to us after we die, that is very much a "in here" item as it doesn't deal directly with "spirituality" but deals with what happens to us.



These things do not deal with what happens to us after we die.  That is th exoteric understanding.  The esoteric, real meaning, is that it refers to  the death of the ego, the illusion of separateness,  which may happen while the body is still alive .



Or how about the question as to whether Jesus rose from the dead and is now "sitting on the right hand of the Father"?  Since that deals with an event that maybe did or maybe didn't happen, that also is an "in here" item,



Again, these are  happenings of  the spiritual world, in here, not historical facts ,  out there.



..so how does one deal with that in regards to objective historical evidence?



Historical evidence is completely meaningless for the science of in here. It makes no difference whatsoever for the understanding of ourselves, in here. It is just an accumulation of past experiences lived by other people.



[even though there's a tendency for many to see "history" and "science" as not being the same, they actually are interrelated to a limited extent and use much the same process in regards to trying to be objective and avoiding biases]



The in here world is not objective.  Theres are no biases.



Again, the entire approach with religion is that it is not based on objectively-derived evidence whereas that's anathema to any objective scientific approach.



You said it.  It deals with the in here world, as opposed to the objective out there world.
At a certain point of understanding, there is no division, no here and there. But as long as we live in duality, they are very different things.





Well, it appears that we are defining "in here" in very different ways.  For example, if one is reincarnated, that's not just something "spiritual"-- it's also physical because there's a physical manifestation as a by-product.  With rebirth, the same is true through a "stream of consciousness" being transferred, and consciousness can be detected physically.  If there's a "heaven", who really knows if there's anything physical involved.  Realize that whenever one is relying on things they label "spiritual", they're treading on very thin ice, although this is not to say that "spiritual" doesn't exist, but it does have to be defined to a certain extent.


  As to the rest, I'm pleased you explained your perspective since this gives me a better idea about the paradigm that you're coming from.  Just for coincidence, I'm making a presentation next Tuesday at my synagogue based on "Non-Dualistic Judaism".


BTW, since this discussion is quite off-topic, if you wish to discuss this further, we can do so over at "Discuss Judaism".  Just let me know if you're interested.   

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3 years ago  ::  Apr 05, 2012 - 7:31PM #32
solfeggio
Posts: 9,352

The study in the OP takes up the question of organised science reaching a level of 'societal prestige and power that would engender public anxiety.'  This would lead to an assumption that 'modernity is irrevocably tied to scientific progress and technical innovation.'


On the other hand, one writer argues that anti-science dispositions pose 'a serious threat' because they would be 'one symptom of a long-standing struggle over the legitimacy over the authority of conventional science' and that such anti-science challenges 'come from people who would delegitimize science and secular institutions.'


Basically, the studies have shown that more-educated societies trust science more.  Yet, amongst the general public in such societies public trust in science still seems to be lacking.  'One possible interpretation, supported by a growing number of studies, is that social factors such as race/ethnicity, income, religiosity, social capital, and political identifications are at least as important as knowledge and education in predicting trust in science.'


One interpretation of the findings in the study is that 'conservatism in the United States has become a cultural domain that generates its own knowledge base that is often in conflict with the cultural authority of science.'


To sum up the findings in the study, 'public trust in science has not declined except among conservatives and those who frequently attend church.'  And 'that conservatives experienced long-term group-specific declines rather than an abrupt cultural break.'

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3 years ago  ::  Apr 05, 2012 - 10:15PM #33
Fodaoson
Posts: 11,158

Apr 4, 2012 -- 9:21PM, jane2 wrote:


Apr 3, 2012 -- 10:01PM, rangerken wrote:


Apr 3, 2012 -- 9:54PM, Fodaoson wrote:


What the surprise?  Conservatives are opposite progressives, science improve life , improvement is change, change for the better is progress( better living through chemistry) conservatives oppose  progress, ergo conservative must oppose science.




A lot of us who are conservatives, AND also scientists, separate science and religion easily.


Science is about HOW things happen.


Religion is about WHY things happen.


There need not be any conflict.


Ken




I do like your reply, R-Ken......................




 






Ranger Ken, Are you a religious conservative?

“I seldom make the mistake of arguing with people for whose opinions I have no respect.” Edward Gibbon
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3 years ago  ::  Apr 12, 2012 - 4:11PM #34
mindis1
Posts: 7,930

Apr 5, 2012 -- 5:49PM, vra wrote:


One final thing: I'm a scientist, and any charge that I have put politics ahead of my science is nothing more than sheer nonsense and strictly a fabrication of someone's imagination as I've been involved in science for over 45 years now. 



Gosh, what could possibly be the reason that you asserted at least two big claims on a scientific topic that you are unable to show are supported by the empirical evidence, one of which is directly contradicted by the evidence, and then you suddenly don’t want to discuss these issues anymore (at least with the person who pointed out your errors)? Despite your laments about the graph of the unadjusted GHCN data not being peer-reviewed, you apparently do not have some strange aversion to considering graphs that are not peer-reviewed, given that you then immediately tried to make an argument using a Gallup poll survey that is not peer-reviewed and which contains a gaggle of graphs. Anyone who can plot points on graph and calculate averages can verify the graph of the unadjusted GHCN data. How much peer-review of a simple equation do you need?


I suspect that your claim that “the researchers are 90-95% certain that [global warming] is mostly due to higher levels o[f] CO2 in our atmosphere,” comes from or is supposed to be a rendition of a statement found in the IPCC’s AR4: “Greenhouse gas forcing has very likely caused most of the observed global warming over the last 50 years,” where “very likely” defined as “>90% probable”. Of course, your claim says something very different from the IPCC statement--your claim is about the beliefs or “certainty” of “the researchers”. What researchers? Name them. At best, your claim only leads to an argumentum ad populum.


The IPCC statement is premised on absolutely no empirical evidence; it is not a conclusion drawn from the results of any attribution study; there is never any calculation of any >90% probability. It is merely an assertion that the author pulled out of his butt.


Other than this fatal problem, the IPCC statement also doesn’t really say much, if it were true. It is apparently intended to sound as though it supports the AGW hypothesis, but it actually doesn’t. After all, water vapor is the most abundant greenhouse gas by far, exerting a greenhouse gas effect many times larger than CO2 does; and anthropogenic CO2 emissions constitute only a tiny portion (less than 1%) of atmospheric CO2. Anthropogenic CO2 additions to the atmosphere during the past century amount to only about one-sixth of the CO2 additions to the atmosphere from natural sources during the past century (cdiac.esd.ornl.gov/pns/current_ghg.html). Thus, even if it were true that “[g]reenhouse gas forcing has very likely caused most of the observed global warming over the last 50 years,” it isn’t evidence that favors the AGW hypothesis. It could be a true fact while the AGW hypothesis is false. We know that all the occasions of global warming in the past were not caused by GHG forcing, and that past atmospheric CO2 concentrations that are many orders of magnitude greater than found today did not cause corresponding global warming.


Notice that I am not afraid to discuss the scientific issues.

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3 years ago  ::  Apr 12, 2012 - 4:14PM #35
mindis1
Posts: 7,930

Apr 5, 2012 -- 7:31PM, solfeggio wrote:


The study in the OP takes up the question of organised science reaching a level of 'societal prestige and power that would engender public anxiety.'  



The study does not “take up” any such question. Evidently you either didn’t understand or wish to misrepresent Gauchat’s study. Here is the context in which the sentence fragment you quoted occurs:


Parsons (1962) proposed that scientific knowledge, particularly its empirical and universal qualities, is essential to secular institutions. Similarly, Barber (1952, 1975, 1990:40) describes a “special congruence” of science with rational-legal authority and modern societies. Yet, even these scholars envisaged limits to public trust in science, because, in their view, organized science would reach a level of societal prestige and power that would engender public anxiety (Barber 1990; Merton 1938; Parsons 1962). STS scholars have been sharply critical of the “special congruence” of science and modernity on numerous fronts (for a concise summary, see Shapin 2008), but most clearly, the underlying assumption that modernity is irrevocably tied to scientific progress and technical innovation. 


It’s merely part of Gauchat’s irrelevant babbling in a paper where he never discusses or even mentions who were the public personalities that respondents were asked to express their degree of “confidence” in (don’t you want to know whom the questions asked about?), much less any of the circumstances in which the questions were asked.  


He also never never mentions any possible results on the surveys that could falsify any of the hypotheses he claims to test. (How many different hypotheses can a single survey question test, anyhow?) If there were no statistically significant change among the groups’ answers since 1974 (as he apparently found with his first two methodologies), or no statistically significant differences between the groups’ answers, how would it falsify his “politicalization” hypothesis? Gauchat doesn’t say, and is apparently uninterested in such crucial questions.


It seems Gauchat does not have much confidence in the scientific method, regardless of how much confidence he may have in the public personalities who “run the institutions [of ‘the Scientific Community’]”. His greatest confidence seems to be in partisan theorizing.


He does not explain how he connects confidence in whatever public personalities were asked about with scientific literacy or the best empirical evidence on scientific questions. Yet he implies repeatedly that there is some kind of parallel or equivalency between the answers given on these surveys and “scientific knowledge”--a term, along with equivalent ones, that he uses more than a dozen times, despite not posing any hypothesis about scientific knowledge nor examining any survey question about scientific knowledge.


How is “scientific knowledge” supposed to relate to having “confidence in the people who run the institutions [of ‘the Scientific Community’]”? A valid conclusion deduced from a fact gotten by the scientific method is often not what is “true” by consensus. “True by consensus” is just the logical fallacy argumentum ad populum.


I think it is possible that the answers to the survey question might reveal something true and important; Gauchat merely missed it with all his partisan puffery. It isn’t the professing of faith in public personalities that is the mark of someone who assesses scientific issues on the best available evidence; just the contrary. It is the people who least often express faith in the public personalities “who run the institutions [of ‘the Scientific Community’]” who are more likely to consider an issue on the scientific merits. Throughout most of the period of the surveys, these people self-identified as “moderates” or “independents” (presumably including those who today identify as “libertarian”), and were probably well represented among that 5% of respondents who did not identify under any political ideology (whom Gauchat eliminated from his analysis). These are the people whose assessments of scientific issues are not bound by binary partisan views.


It has been my experience that people who are least committed to some partisan ideology are most likely to assess on the scientific merits those scientific issues that have political implications. E.g., the scientific issues pertaining to the events of 9/11/2001; the scientific issues pertaining to viruses (e.g., the fact that a virus that has not been shown to have been isolated cannot be said to be the cause of any disease), and “treatment”; the scientific issues pertaining to the diagnosis and “treatment” of the behaviors that are labeled “mental disorders”; and the scientific issues pertaining to the AGW hypothesis. I am sure that my mere mention of these issues sets some people’s eyeballs on fire. Partisan politics is religion for many people--beyond the realm where things can be questioned.

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3 years ago  ::  Apr 18, 2012 - 12:07PM #36
lucaspa
Posts: 557

Apr 2, 2012 -- 11:46AM, TemplarS wrote:


I see this as being largely true.  But the fascinating thing is, there are two entirely different and unrelated phenomena at work.


There are the economic conservatives, who choose to ignore scientific findings on things related to (generally)  the environment, because they see it leading to increased government intervention, or "interference" with free enterprise.


Then (in the US anyway- I do not know that this phenomenon exists much elsewhere) there are the Christian fundamentalist conservatives, who choose to ignore science on things like evolution.


There is no real reason for these to be linked, other than political convenience (and shrewd strategizing by the Republicans). 



They are linked becaues they are not "entirely different".  They are subsets of the same phenomenon:  rejecting science because it tells you things that, if accepted, would provide overwhelming reasons to have you stop doing something you want to do.


It started with religion, when science told people that a literal interpretation of Genesis 1-8 was not correct.  Most Christians had no problem with this.  But for those who really wanted and needed the Bible to be absolutely correct as their life preserver of belief, that was intolerable.  Therefore reject the science.


The next public example was the cigarrette industry and rejection of scientific studies showing that smoking was harmful to people's health.  Here the "something you want to do" was sell cigarettes and make money for the people working in and owning the tobacco industry.  For smokers, when studies came out showing that second-hand smoke also caused health problems, the "something you want to do" was have a cigarette anywhere and anytime the smoker wanted, and  they didn't want to be exiled to outside in the rain and snow. 


Now, of course, we have global warming, studies on gun violence, etc.  For global warming the "something you want to do" ranges from make money for people making money in oil industry to don't want to give up the SUV.


As it turns out, nearly all of these issues have been espoused by conservatives.  It's not surprising, since all of them involve change to people's lives. And what is conservatism?  It's keeping things the same. In some radical circumstances, it's turning the clock back to some time when things were supposedly "better". That usually means the group wanting to turn the clock back had more power and priviledge then.


So there are 2 links, now that I think about it.  Conservatism in religion and conservatism in economics and social behavior.

"If sound science appears to contradict the Bible, we may be sure that it is our interpretation of the Bible that is at fault."  Christian Observer, 1832, pg. 437

"Christians should look on evolution simply as the method by which God works."  James McCosh, theologian and President of Princeton, The Religious Aspects of Evolution, 2d ed. 1890, pg 68.
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3 years ago  ::  Apr 18, 2012 - 12:18PM #37
lucaspa
Posts: 557

Apr 12, 2012 -- 4:14PM, mindis1 wrote:


How is “scientific knowledge” supposed to relate to having “confidence in the people who run the institutions [of ‘the Scientific Community’]”? A valid conclusion deduced from a fact gotten by the scientific method is often not what is “true” by consensus. “True by consensus” is just the logical fallacy argumentum ad populum.



Theoretically, anyone can go out and repeat a scientific experiment and get the same results.  That is what makes science "public knowledge".  In practice, the experiments require  time, money, special equipment, and special trainning.  I'm a scientist.  A biochemist.  But I do not have the time or expertise to gather climatological data and run climatological models.  Therefore I, as a scientist, have "confidence in the people" who do the experiments.  Yes, they are checked by their peers, which is one reason I have confidence.  OTOH, I also know how many poor papers are published in my discipline. :)


So, for the public, the issue does come down to "confidence in the people".  Which is why people who don't like the science launch personal attacks against the scientists: degrade that trust. It's also why people who don't like the science buy "experts" who put out opposite statements: get the public distraced from the data and make it a trust issue.


Throughout most of the period of the surveys, these people self-identified as “moderates” or “independents” (presumably including those who today identify as “libertarian”), and were probably well represented among that 5% of respondents who did not identify under any political ideology (whom Gauchat eliminated from his analysis). These are the people whose assessments of scientific issues are not bound by binary partisan views.



Leaving out 5% is not going to change the results significantly.  However, stop and think about what you are saying: if there are only 5% of people who are actually trying to objectively evaluate the science, then we as a society are in deep manure.


It has been my experience that people who are least committed to some partisan ideology are most likely to assess on the scientific merits those scientific issues that have political implications. E.g., the scientific issues pertaining to the events of 9/11/2001; the scientific issues pertaining to viruses (e.g., the fact that a virus that has not been shown to have been isolated cannot be said to be the cause of any disease), and “treatment”; the scientific issues pertaining to the diagnosis and “treatment” of the behaviors that are labeled “mental disorders”; and the scientific issues pertaining to the AGW hypothesis.



That certainly does not correspond to my experience as a scientist.  For instance, my scientific evaluation of AGW is that it is so strongly supported that it is "fact". Yet you are using "hypothesis" as tho it is still just a guess. 

"If sound science appears to contradict the Bible, we may be sure that it is our interpretation of the Bible that is at fault."  Christian Observer, 1832, pg. 437

"Christians should look on evolution simply as the method by which God works."  James McCosh, theologian and President of Princeton, The Religious Aspects of Evolution, 2d ed. 1890, pg 68.
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2 years ago  ::  Apr 26, 2012 - 12:36AM #38
rangerken
Posts: 16,408

This thread was moved from the Hot Topics Zone

Libertarian, Conservative, Life member of the NRA and VFW
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2 years ago  ::  Apr 26, 2012 - 12:39AM #39
rangerken
Posts: 16,408

Apr 5, 2012 -- 10:15PM, Fodaoson wrote:


Apr 4, 2012 -- 9:21PM, jane2 wrote:


Apr 3, 2012 -- 10:01PM, rangerken wrote:


Apr 3, 2012 -- 9:54PM, Fodaoson wrote:


What the surprise?  Conservatives are opposite progressives, science improve life , improvement is change, change for the better is progress( better living through chemistry) conservatives oppose  progress, ergo conservative must oppose science.




A lot of us who are conservatives, AND also scientists, separate science and religion easily.


Science is about HOW things happen.


Religion is about WHY things happen.


There need not be any conflict.


Ken




I do like your reply, R-Ken......................




 






Ranger Ken, Are you a religious conservative?




Hell NO Fodaoson...not remotely...no way...perish the thought...sometimes I think my parish priest wishes I'd become a Wiccan and go away...LOL.


Anyway, I like this thread and I hope it will do OK on the Science and Religion forum where it now sits.


Ken

Libertarian, Conservative, Life member of the NRA and VFW
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