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« The Unicity of God | Main | Murata & Chittick on the Qur'an »

August 26, 2003


M. Simon

The problem religion always has with science is that they are based on what are fundamentally opposite mental constructs.

Science is based on eternal doubt. Religion on eternal revealed truth and faith.

Christianity has had 500 years or so to come to grips with this and there are still some branches that are not at all comfortable with doubt/science.

Islam for the most part has been able to put off it's reckoning between faith and doubt. Now the crisis will have to be dealt with in a very short time span, one or two generations at most.

I think the key is that science can give methods. Religion must give meaning.

You are correct that the meddling of faith in method ultimately gives falsehood. But method when it gives us pictures of far away stars or the atoms of the hand can also assist with meaning.

Ultimately though faith can inform human interactions, I think no faith can stand up against doubt in the long run. At least there is none I'm aware of. What may be left is a faith that is stripped of so many parts once considered essential. When the advances in understanding how the brain works become more fully understood this will be doubly so.


BTW I enjoyed you comments on Winds of Change but I think you need to explain some of the threads you weave better as most Westerners are not familiar with the nuances of Islamic thought. I found your blog by researching some of those threads so your effort was not in vain but the more casual reader may not be willing or able to make the effort. I do think that the interchange between Islam and the West needs to be more main streamed so that views like those of Little Green Footballs are not the only ones available. Charles Johnson says he is looking for a 21st Century moderate Islam. Perhaps you could show him some.


Thanks for your comments, M. Simon.

You're right; science is different from religion. Yet, I believe the reduction of human life to a few laws of nature, means the end of "humanity". John Gray's "Straw Dogs" is the logical conclusion of 'scientism'. Of course religiom, especially one like Islam, which relies heavily on the distinction of 'good' from 'evil', cannot accept that such concepts are the mere result of 'nature'. The irony is that religion, for so long the 'enemy ' of humanism, will end up saving it.

As to issue wrt to Mr. Johnson, I hope you don't mind if I make no comment. When I comment on a blog or a website (which I rarely do in any case), I usually do so in a post of my own so it is clear for everyone. And, I leave a note in the persons inbox or comments section.

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