Science and Spirituality. Notes of an Orthodox Christian Scientist

  1. Lemma
  2. Наука и духовность: Заметки православного ученого
  3. Russian
  4. Asliturk, Miriam
  5. Conflict - Scientific theories and disciplines > Mathematics - Key thinkers - Scientific theories and disciplines > Biology:evolution - Concepts of knowledge and modes of reasoning > Sources of knowledge (empiricism/rationalism) - Various approaches to the problem of correlation between science and theology - Concepts of knowledge and modes of reasoning
  6. 21-10-2017
  7. Репринцева, С.М. [Author]. Наука и духовность: Заметки православного ученого
  8. Наука и духовность. Заметки православного ученого : Science and Spirituality. Notes of an Orthodox Christian Scientist
  9. evolutionism - reductionism - rationalism - cosmology - Orthodox Christianity - Laplace, Pierre-Simon
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    1. <p>Репринцева С.М. (2004). <em>Наука и духовность. Заметки православного ученого</em>. Минск, Беларусь:<em><em> </em></em>Издательство Белорусского Экзархата.  </p> <h4 class="page-title"> </h4>
    1. Looking at the relationship between science and religion, the author describes herself as a scientist who gradually – due to personal circumstances and the influence of the work of scientist Viktor Veinik – came to Orthodox Christianity.

      The author points out that the so-called “scientific worldview” is based on reductionism, evolutionism, and rationalism. Reductionism is the assumption that the lower forms of being are more real than the higher forms (which are reduced only to a combination of the lower). Evolutionism maintains that complex forms of being were automatically formed from the original simple forms under the influence of the laws of nature. Rationalism is the belief in the omnipotence of the human mind, of mathematics and logic. “Scientific worldview”, the author argues, is problematic as it is formulated not by scientists, but by ideologists who select and diffuse scientific data that serve the existing ideology.

      Thus evolutionism used the cosmological theory of Laplace (which in fact has never been fully proven), generalized it and made it look like a universal law of automatic transformation of the simple into the complex. Laplace’s hypothesis was then extended to living substance, which Laplace himself never did. Then, rationalism ignored Leibniz’s doctrine of monads (an ascending sequence of indivisible units, each of which governs a certain fragment of the visible world) but accepted his idea of purely logical cognition. Darwin’s natural selection and evolutionism were accepted by ideologists although they were heavily criticized at the time of their appearance by scientists such as Agassiz, Vikhrov, Drish, etc.

      The author points out that the inconsistency of Darwin’s theory was later proven by palaeontologists, by the discovery of Watson Crick's mechanism of protein synthesis on ribosomes as well as by the recently confirmed Vernadsky’s law of constancy of biomass on the Earth. Finally, Oparin's widespread theory of the origin of life on earth (which maintains the evolution of simple molecules into more complex ones) was challenged by the discovery of DNA and the fact that the DNA molecule does not change in principle.

      Even mathematics, the author argues, has questioned rationalism. K. Gödel constructed a true arithmetic statement that cannot be deduced from the axioms of arithmetic - neither the statement nor its negation. Then Tarski proved that the very notion of truth is logically inexpressible. In short, the distance from deducibility to truth is so great that the role of logic in cognition can be neglected. Finally, the theorem of Paris and Harrington proved that even relatively simple arithmetic truths cannot be established without resorting to the notion of actual infinity, which belongs to the non-material realm of thought.

      The author finds particularly frustrating the fact that even Orthodox Christian scientists cannot understand that both science and religion are made by people, which is why they cannot exist in parallel planes. However, the scientific world has a deep misunderstanding of the need for moral and ethical restrictions in the field of research. She believes that this ethical blindness is mainly due to the scientists’ pride described as an important sin in Christian tradition.