When Science Becomes Unscientific

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Sometimes people in the faith community are accused of attacking science. To do so would be the height of foolishness. No person of reasonable intelligence would question the value of science. Problems arise, however, when science overreaches itself. What should be requested is for science to remain scientific.

Would it not go against all logic to ask a plumber to check our cholesterol level, or to request that the gardener tune the piano? These people are skilled in a particular field, and they would do well to operate within that field. Likewise, science functions best when it stays within its prescribed domain. Science is equipped to analyze natural phenomenon but is not in a position to address any others, or to pontificate that other causes could not possibly exist.

Science is capable of telling us how things can be done, but it cannot tell us what ought to be done. To expect science to answer philosophical questions is to go to the wrong place for answers. To mix science with philosophy is to confuse them both.

“It is our mistake to ask science to do something it can’t,” admitted Iain McGilchrist. “It’s like expecting your iPod to tell you whether you are in love.”

Christianity is not at odds with science. It has trouble with science that has become religious and has ceased to be aware of its limitations.  Science answers a lot of questions, but to expect it to answer them all is not only an impossibility, it is also an absurdity.

–J. O. Schulz

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One thought on “When Science Becomes Unscientific

  1. Yes. As we have remarked on our blog and in our comments on other blogs, science is not competent to address such things that are philosophical, moral or spiritual in nature. Science is limited to the realm of physical phenomena as its instruments are merely extensions of our 5 physical senses. Yet, there are those who will make science into a pseudo religion, thus “scientism”. In the West, philosophy was the handmade of science for centuries. In the East (as in India), philosophy was the handmade of religion.

    Liked by 1 person

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