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Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Creationism, philosophy and science
Dennis Byrne writes,
Vast areas of knowledge are open to those who realize that just as a branch of physics examines the "first principle of everything," so does metaphysics. Or that cosmology and theology are on the same coin, just on different sides.

We should approach the Big Question with awe and humility, not ridicule and self-certainty. With excitement and optimism, instead of division and the kind of cynicism that rejects the possibility of parallel or complementary explanations.

To leave students without a perspective of how philosophy and theology and religion help bring us to an understanding of "all things," is as wrong as denying students the understanding that science brings. Philosophers and theologians may--must, actually--rigorously examine the scientific theory that random chance explains everything. A denial of that right and responsibility rises from the same spirit of arrogant certitude that haunted Galileo.
I repeat, my position on creationism/intelligent design and science is that, while I oppose the teaching of Intelligent Design in science classes, I also support a scientific analysis of the theory of evolution that would include whatever findings support or contradict said theory. To me, rigorous scientific study can be introduced at a very early age in schools. Embracing either Intelligent Design or the theory of evolution unquestioningly is wrong. Science, by definition, evolves based on the impartial analysis of facts that can be quantified and reproduced. Maintaining science in the science classroom is a top priority in any society. Prohibiting intelligent and civil conversation about religion in the public sphere impoverishes us.

Prior posts: Creation and intelligent design, examined by a scientist and by a humanist, and here.

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Merry Christmas
Dr. Sowell looks at Merry You-Know-What
Those who banish the symbols of a civilization often undermine that civilization in other ways as well. People who warn us against being "Eurocentric" are often totally Eurocentric when it comes to condemning the sins of the human race as if they were peculiarities of "our society."

These are not just isolated foibles that we can laugh at. No society can survive in the long run without the allegiance of its people. Undermining a sense of the worthiness of a society undermines that allegiance -- and, without allegiance, there is no defense.

In the international jungle, made more dangerous by terrorist networks that circle the globe, anything that it is not defended is in jeopardy -- which means we are all in jeopardy, and so are our children and our children's children.

Those who wage war against the symbols of American society and Western civilization may do so for no wider purpose than moral exhibitionism or just a desire to be in step with fashionable trends. But silliness can be a prelude to tragedy.
Read it all.

Update, December 21


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