On the Scientific and the Religious

  1. Lemma
  2. O naucnom i religijskom
  3. Serbian
  4. Stevanovic, Aleksandra
  5. Modes of interaction - Various approaches to the problem of correlation between science and theology
  6. 29-11-2016
  7. Malnik, Ljubo [Author]. On the Scientific and the Religious. 40–51
  8. Gledista
    1. Malnik, Ljubo
  9. different approaches
    1. The author begins by stating that it is difficult to understand what philosophy, religion, or science represent. In addition, religion does have a cognitive function, but knowledge about religion is not the religion itself and thus the analysis of science and religion cannot be reduced to the analysis of scientific and religious cognition because the language of science cannot be translated into the language of religion and vice versa. Therefore, the author claims that prior to any debate, it should be considered whether any relation exists.  

      According to the author, there are cultures where science and religion exclude each other; whereas, there are those accentuating their connection. This suggests that the there is no problem between those spheres, but in the understanding of man, or precisely, the relation of consciousness and the world. Western civilization perceives world as something apart and suggests spiritual separation in Cartesian tradition. The author further indicates the inability of the depth of human spirit cognition. In other words, there is always something beyond human knowledge, entire cognition is not achievable.

      When it comes to religion, its essence cannot be reached through scientific method. While scientific truths are being proven, religious ones are simply told. For instance, when it comes to rotation of the Earth around the Sun, a scientist would prove it beginning from the law of gravitation, while a believer would see it as the God’s will which gravitation follows, not precedes. Contrary to religion where essential truths are not attained, but stage beginning, in the world of science, they are the aim. This is noticed in the language as well. While believers interpret what is said or written, scientists reach some truth. Since believers know the truth, they do not research or wander, everything is already given. A Cartesian scientist always wanders to find a new truth, not believing that there is a human cognition limit. The author however indicates that whenever there was new cognition, it yielded new questions as well; every new revelation brings new unknown aspects. In the quest for knowledge, science has always crossed the border and taken what is conceivable from metaphysics. Inconceivable still remains any attempt of resolution that leads to religion so that the inevitability of religion somehow stems from the powerlessness of science, that is, what is essential in religion begins where the teaching of science stops. Therefore, there would always be some transcendental content beyond the grasp of science. 

      The general conclusion of the author is that although the dissent between science and religion is not necessary, there are numerous instances of open dispute. There are many fallacies in both of them and most of them are the consequence of uncritical extrapolation of one’s domain into the other’s.