January 30, 2009

Science and Democracy

Dennis Overbye for the Science Times: "Science is not a monument of received Truth but something that people do to look for truth."

Peter Steinberg and Ken Bloom at CERN react; Adam Frank, author of The Constant Fire, Beyond the Science vs. Religion Debate talks to Melissa Lafsky at Discover (part I and part II). This is a debate that will go on, most likely, forever: regardless of how many amazing and fundamental truths are revealed in this eon of scientific exploration, I doubt that any TOE will encompass "God created the Earth and everything in it, including quantum physics." (Right off the bat, wouldn't that theory need to be revised to include the universe and everything in it? Or, rather, multiverse...)

I will admit that religion has its place, and has historically contributed both good and ill to developing societies. However, it's high time that religion admit to being less viable as The Great Explainer of Life--or at least separately viable--and allow science to move forward without today's myriad attempts to bamboozle. (I'm looking at you, intelligent design.)

To quote Einstein: "It is in fact nothing short of a miracle that the modern methods of instruction have not yet entirely strangled the holy curiosity of inquiry; for what this delicate little plant needs more than anything, besides stimulation, is freedom."

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