AiN and other Theists: The argument for evolution as a religion
Hi folks. I'm going to copy in part of a response I got from AiN in another thread that I'd like to use as the springboard for a discussion:
IT'S NOT SCIENTIFIC, IT'S PHILOSOPHY, LIKE OTHER PHILOSOPHICAL VIEWS IT'S HELD ON TO RELIGIOUSLY AND CANNOT BE PROVEN SCIENTIFICALLY. IT'S NOT SCIENTIFIC! GET THAT THROUGH YOUR THICK RELIGIOUSLY BIGOTED HEADS! I MEAN EVEN AT THE BIRTH OF EVOLUTION, IT WAS RIGHTLY LABELED AS A PHILOSOPHICAL VIEW. TRADING GOD FOR MATTER OR NATURE DOESN'T MAKE IT ANY LESS RELIGIOUS OR PHILOSOPHICAL.
This is an argument that comes up time and time again. Evolution isn't proven scientifically, it's not science and is therefore a religion. There's nothing that atheists have to prove that this world view is more accurate than philosophy X. For the time being I'm going to be kind enough to ignore the suggestions that evolution is non-scientific. I'm going to take this argument at face value.
AiN and other theists, do you accept that the following is an accurate description of your position? - Evolution does not follow scientific principles and as such cannot claim to proven or true, and should be regarded as a religion because it is based solely on philosophical principles. If you do not accept this statement could you please provide a more accurate definition of your position?
If, on the other hand, you do accept that this is your position then I'd like you to respond to the following based upon that position:
- Do you accept that science, given its ability to describe the natural world, holds greater truth value than philosophical positions which cannot be proven to be true? Yes/No.
- Regardless of your previous answer, do you believe that things which have been proven scientifically are more believable than philosophical constructs because of the evidence behind them? Yes/No.
If your answer to both the above questions is No, I would like to know why, in an effort to tarnish its validity, you wish to move evolution away from the arena of science. If science adds to the validity of a proposal you must answer Yes to one of the above. If science doesn't add to the validity* of a proposal why are you desperate to claim that evolution isn't scientific?
If your answer to either of the above questions was Yes could you now provide an answer to the following:
- Do you accept that your religious/theistic viewpoint is a philosophical position? Yes/No
- Do you accept that your religious/theistic viewpoint, given its reliance on supernatural, cannot be proven by science?
- Do you accept, given that science adds validity to a position*, that your religious/theistic viewpoint holds less truth value and/or is less believable than one which can be proven scientifically?
* for bonus points, if you maintain that science does not increase the validity of a positions I'd like to hear you explain why this is.
Forget Jesus, the stars died so that you could be here
- Lawrence Krauss