Fundamental Contradiction

PZ Myers lays out the fundamental contradiction between Faith and Science in this comment in his dissection of Sam Brownback’s op-ed in the NY Times today.

There is a fundamental contradiction. Faith says that the way to get answers is by revelation, accepting authority, and dogma. Science says that the way to get answers is by examining the evidence critically, testing hypotheses with experiment in the natural world, and by constantly reevaluating and revising our ideas to make them more accurate. It isn’t just that the two arrive at different, conflicting answers—for instance, that the earth is 6000 years old vs. 4.5 billion years old—but that their methods conflict. Scientists will not accept a random idea because someone contemplated and decided a deep “Truth” appealed to him: a kernel of observation and evidence is required.

I recommend that you go read the rest of the dissection. And then make sure you don’t vote for Sam Brownback.

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