NYT article on religion and politics

August 20, 2007

A good review in the New York Times* about the past, present, and future of the seperation of church and state.  I would only emphasize that it is foolish to think that we are in the clear.  We have enjoyed a prosperous, scientific society for the past 400 years only because we have largely abandoned the shackles of religion.  Even the “religious” are very selective of the passages of the Bible they read and all but the most zealous think that their religion is in a separate sphere and isolated from their daily experience. 

There has been a trend towards greater fundamentalism in the United States which will likely end US dominance of science and technology (and the world in general) as our children are raised in a confused state where religious dogma pretends to have as much likelihood as scientific fact.  The more our religions gets protective (and it must to survive the slimming gaps it has so far plugged) the more they will cloud the minds of our children.

Children (and most adults) have a tendency to believe what is convinient and doesn’t make them think.  They tend to fall into the “Argument from Personal Incredulity” which states that if they can’t understand it then it must be false.  Science is very specialized and can be very hard to understand.  Very few understand Natural Selection and even fewer the quantum physics that underline this world, I don’t understand the later.  The difference, they need to realize, is that with science they can actually acquire the skills to go out and perform the experiments or to learn to understand the mathematics and theory.  With religion and faith-based “knowledge” you just have to accept what is stated and then all the answers flow from there, “Magic man dun’it”.

E

* I don’t know how long the link will remain open to the public, the NYT tends to leave this stuff up only for a few days.

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