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From Pew polling research: A drift toward naturalism

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Perhaps the most striking trend in American religion in recent years has been the growing percentage of adults who do not identify with a religious group. And the vast majority of these religious “nones” (78%) say they were raised as a member of a particular religion before shedding their religious identity in adulthood.

About half of current religious “nones” who were raised in a religion (49%) indicate that a lack of belief led them to move away from religion. This includes many respondents who mention “science” as the reason they do not believe in religious teachings, including one who said “I’m a scientist now, and I don’t believe in miracles.” Others reference “common sense,” “logic” or a “lack of evidence” – or simply say they do not believe in God.

They actually do have a religion. It is called naturalism (nature is all there is).

One problem for fellow citizens is that, by and large, the millennials, who lead in this area, have a surprisingly low commitment to free speech (hence the problem of junior jackboots on campus).

These will be interesting times.

See also: Yet another “myth of free will” claim These claims come in many varieties but their outcome, if not their purpose, is transparent: No one, including the naturalist atheist, is responsible for what he does. Consider what that means for issues like intellectual freedom and responsible government.

and

Darwin’s “horrid doubt”: The mind

24 Replies to “From Pew polling research: A drift toward naturalism

  1. 1
  2. 2
    Seversky says:

    They actually do have a religion. It is called naturalism (nature is all there is).

    If naturalism is a religion to you, is there anything that isn’t? How do you define religion?

  3. 3
    bornagain77 says:

    “I’m a scientist now, and I don’t believe in miracles.”

    The irony being, of course, the fact that he can practice science in the first place, in a rationally ordered universe instead of in a chaotic universe, is a miracle in and of itself.

    “You find it strange that I consider the comprehensibility of the world (to the extent that we are authorized to speak of such a comprehensibility) as a miracle or as an eternal mystery. Well, a priori, one should expect a chaotic world, which cannot be grasped by the mind in any way .. the kind of order created by Newton’s theory of gravitation, for example, is wholly different. Even if a man proposes the axioms of the theory, the success of such a project presupposes a high degree of ordering of the objective world, and this could not be expected a priori. That is the ‘miracle’ which is constantly reinforced as our knowledge expands.”
    Albert Einstein – Letters to Solovine – New York, Philosophical Library, 1987

    The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences – Eugene Wigner – 1960
    Excerpt: ,,certainly it is hard to believe that our reasoning power was brought, by Darwin’s process of natural selection, to the perfection which it seems to possess.,,,
    It is difficult to avoid the impression that a miracle confronts us here, quite comparable in its striking nature to the miracle that the human mind can string a thousand arguments together without getting itself into contradictions, or to the two miracles of the existence of laws of nature and of the human mind’s capacity to divine them.,,,
    The miracle of the appropriateness of the language of mathematics for the formulation of the laws of physics is a wonderful gift which we neither understand nor deserve. We should be grateful for it and hope that it will remain valid in future research and that it will extend, for better or for worse, to our pleasure, even though perhaps also to our bafflement, to wide branches of learning.
    http://www.dartmouth.edu/~matc.....igner.html

  4. 4
    kairosfocus says:

    Seversky: try, the view that evolutionary materialistic scientism is an ideological commitment with worldview level elements, arguably substantially equivalent to and functioning as a de facto religion. Where, a useful definition of religion has to embrace not only the classical theistic faiths, but also amimistic, pagan and systems such as Buddhism, or humanism, or universalism, new Age-ism etc, which can be atheistic. Thus, while dictionaries often speak of deity or higher powers, religion as a global concept must be broader than that, perhaps through looking at family resemblance and functional equivalents. Where also, political, social-cultural, educational and similar movements can and do take up a character that would bring them into the ambit of a religion or even a cult. So, religion is perhaps better understood as a personal or organised worldview level framework and/or tradition that provides a core narrative for interpreting and working towards fulfilling one’s place in the world, i/l/o the perceived core nature and/or root cause of that reality, involving [perhaps implicit] guiding principles for thought, life and affairs, with formal or informal institutions and often involving designated leadership or classes of specially committed devotees. KF

  5. 5
    soundburger says:

    From the OP
    ” No one, including the naturalist atheist, is responsible for what he does. ”
    And yet, Jerry Coyne continually harps on about how teaching everyone that they have no free will will have ‘implications’ (positive) for prison reform. Typical Coyne, only seeing the side of an issue he chooses to see. He refuses to recognize (or in any case, acknowledge) that convincing people they have no free will would likely lead to an INCREASE in crime – potentially a huge one at that – as people, on subways, in bars, etc. would be more likely to act out impulses of violence, theft, or sexual impropriety, telling themselves, “I probably shouldn’t do this, but I really have no choice in the matter; best to follow my instincts.’

    It would also lead to people not reaching their highest potentials, not, for example working hard to get a PhD as Coyne has done, convinced that there is no real person choosing to do the hard work or not, no person to be appreciated and valued for such hard work, etc. etc.

    The ‘science proves it, you have no free will’ scenario has ‘implications’ all right, but such good ones as there may be (if any) would be tsunami-ed by the bad ones.

  6. 6
    bornagain77 says:

    Induction is dependent on Theistic premises – Why Atheism Cannot Account for Science | James N. Anderson, PhD – video (conclusion at 17:40 minute mark)
    https://youtu.be/8FvwDdRH9pM?t=1060

  7. 7
    rvb8 says:

    “They actually do have a religion. It’s called naturalism.”

    I see you spell my ‘religion’ with a small ‘n’; not very respectful.

    My religion, that is ‘naturalism’, I suppose has a Bible? Would that be “Origins”? Within this ‘bible’ it’s really hard to find any ‘smiting’ or endorsements of slavery, or genocide.
    My ‘bible’, is also followed by supporting prophets; Watson, Crick, Coyne, Dawkins, Hitchens,and so many other illustrious names as to be rather daunting to the followers of other religions.
    My ‘religion’ does however lack some of the baggage associated with your religion; I assume yours is Christianity of some flavour.
    We don’t have a high priest, unless you would like to throw Darwin’s name in the hat. We don’t have an overwheening desire to prove what we already accept, rather we question what has been accepted, and reject that which is proven false; very unlike your religion I believe.
    Heck! Taking this together, my religion looks more like science than faith!
    Leaving you I suppose, as a religious believer (which is fine) and me as a ‘naturalist.’
    Apparently ‘religion’ and ‘naturalism’, are two different words, with two different meanings.

  8. 8
    Fair Witness says:

    @bornagain77 “…rationally ordered universe…”

    HAH !

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mij4DYYnkF8

  9. 9
    bornagain77 says:

    Fair Witness:

    Privileged planet:

    i.e. 5. Naturalism/Materialism predicted the universe did not have life in mind and that life was ultimately an accident of time and chance. Theism predicted this universe was purposely created by God with man in mind. Scientists find the universe is exquisitely fine-tuned for carbon-based life to exist in this universe. Moreover it is found, when scrutinizing the details of physics and chemistry, that not only is the universe fine-tuned for carbon based life, but is specifically fine-tuned for life like human life (R. Collins, M. Denton).-

    6. Naturalism/Materialism predicted complex life in this universe should be fairly common. Theism predicted the earth is extremely unique in this universe. Statistical analysis of the hundreds of required parameters which enable complex organic life to be possible on earth gives strong indication the earth is extremely unique in this universe (G. Gonzalez; Hugh Ross). –

    Eric Metaxas – Does Science Argue for or against God? – (Sagan’s ‘naturalistic’ estimate based on the Drake equation shown to be overly optimistic) – animated video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UjGPHF5A6Po

    Contrary to the handful of parameters that Drake reasoned would have to be met in order for advanced civilization to be possible on any given planet, the fact of the matter is that it is now known that hundreds of parameters would have to met in order for advanced civilization to be possible on any given planet.

    In fact, there are currently a total of 816 known parameters which have to be met for complex, intelligent, life to be possible on Earth, or on a planet like Earth. Individually, these limits are not that impressive but when we realize ALL these limits have to be met at the same time and on the same planet, and not one of the limits can be out of its life permitting range for any extended period of time, then the probability for a world which can host advanced life in this universe becomes very extraordinary. Here is the final summary of Dr. Hugh Ross’s ‘conservative’ estimate for the probability of finding another life-hosting world in this universe.

    Linked from Appendix C from Dr. Ross’s book, ‘Why the Universe Is the Way It Is’;
    Probability Estimates for the Features Required by Various Life Forms:
    Excerpt:
    Requirements to sustain bacteria for 90 days or less:
    Probability for occurrence of all 501 parameters approx. 10-614
    dependency factors estimate approx. 10^-303
    longevity requirements estimate approx. 10^22
    Probability for occurrence of all 501 parameters approx. 10^-333
    Maximum possible number of life support bodies in observable universe approx. 10^22
    Thus, less than 1 chance in 10^311 exists that even one such life-support body would occur anywhere in the universe without invoking divine miracles.

    Requirements to sustain unicellar life for three billion year:
    Probability for occurrence of all 676 parameters approx. 10^-859
    dependency factors estimate approx. 10^-303
    longevity requirements estimate approx. 10^22
    Probability for occurrence of all 676 parameters approx. 10^-578
    Maximum possible number of life support bodies in observable universe approx. 10^22
    Thus, less than 1 chance in 10^556 exists that even one such life-support body would occur anywhere in the universe without invoking divine miracle

    Requirements to sustain intelligent physical life:
    Probability for occurrence of all 816 parameters approx. 10^-1333
    dependency factors estimate approx. 10^-324
    longevity requirements estimate approx. 10^45
    Probability for occurrence of all 816 parameters approx. 10^-1054
    Maximum possible number of life support bodies in observable universe approx. 10^22
    Thus, less than 1 chance in 10^1032 exists that even one such life-support body would occur anywhere in the universe without invoking divine miracle
    http://www.reasons.org/files/c....._part3.pdf

    Of related note to the uniqueness of earth, there is now found to be an anomaly in the Cosmic Background Radiation that, of all places, strangely lines up with the earth and solar system.

    Why is the solar system cosmically aligned? BY Dragan Huterer – 2007
    The solar system seems to line up with the largest cosmic features. Is this mere coincidence or a signpost to deeper insights?
    Caption under figure on page 43:
    ODD ALIGNMENTS hide within the multipoles of the cosmic microwave background. In this combination of the quadrupole and octopole, a plane bisects the sphere between the largest warm and cool lobes. The ecliptic — the plane of Earth’s orbit projected onto the celestial sphere — is aligned parallel to the plane between the lobes.
    http://www-personal.umich.edu/.....uterer.pdf
    Here is the actual graph of the alignment from the Huterer 2007 paper (worth a thousand words):
    http://i44.servimg.com/u/f44/1.....is_o10.jpg

    What Is Evil About The Axis Of Evil? – February 17, 2015
    The Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) Radiation contains small temperature fluctuations.
    When these temperature fluctuations are analyzed using image processing techniques (specifically spherical harmonics), they indicate a special direction in space, or, in a sense, an axis through the universe. This axis is correlated back to us, and causes many difficulties for the current big bang and standard cosmology theories. What has been discovered is shocking.
    Two scientists, Kate Land and João Magueijo, in a paper in 2005 describing the axis, dubbed it the “Axis of Evil” because of the damage it does to current theories, and (tongue in cheek) as a response to George Bush’ Axis of Evil speech regarding Iraq, Iran and, North Korea.
    (Youtube clip on site)
    In the above video, Max Tegmark describes in a simplified way how spherical harmonics analysis decomposes the small temperature fluctuations into more averaged and spatially arranged temperature components, known as multipoles.
    The “Axis of Evil” correlates to the earth’s ecliptic and equinoxes, and this represents a very unusual and unexpected special direction in space, a direct challenge to the Copernican Principle.
    http://www.theprinciplemovie.com/evil-axis-evil/

    Is there a violation of the Copernican principle in radio sky? – Ashok K. Singal – May 17, 2013
    Abstract: Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation (CMBR) observations from the WMAP satellite have shown some unexpected anisotropies (directionally dependent observations), which surprisingly seem to be aligned with the eclipticcite {20,16,15}. The latest data from the Planck satellite have confirmed the presence of these anisotropiescite {17}. Here we report even larger anisotropies in the sky distributions of powerful extended quasars and some other sub-classes of radio galaxies in the 3CRR catalogue, one of the oldest and most intensively studies sample of strong radio sourcescite{21,22,3}. The anisotropies lie about a plane passing through the two equinoxes and the north celestial pole (NCP). We can rule out at a 99.995% confidence level the hypothesis that these asymmetries are merely due to statistical fluctuations. Further, even the distribution of observed radio sizes of quasars and radio galaxies show large systematic differences between these two sky regions. The redshift distribution appear to be very similar in both regions of sky for all sources, which rules out any local effects to be the cause of these anomalies. Two pertinent questions then arise. First, why should there be such large anisotropies present in the sky distribution of some of the most distant discrete sources implying inhomogeneities in the universe at very large scales (covering a fraction of the universe)? What is intriguing even further is why such anisotropies should lie about a great circle decided purely by the orientation of earth’s rotation axis and/or the axis of its revolution around the sun? It looks as if these axes have a preferential placement in the larger scheme of things, implying an apparent breakdown of the Copernican principle or its more generalization, cosmological principle, upon which all modern cosmological theories are based upon.
    http://arxiv.org/abs/1305.4134

    At the 13:55 minute mark of this following video, Max Tegmark, an atheist, finally admits, post Planck 2013, that the CMBR anomalies do indeed line up with the earth and solar system

    “Thoughtcrime: The Conspiracy to Stop The Principle” – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=0eVUSDy_rO0#t=832

    Verse:

    Isaiah 45:18-19
    For thus says the Lord, who created the heavens, who is God, who formed the earth and made it, who established it, who did not create it in vain, who formed it to be inhabited: “I am the Lord, and there is no other. I have not spoken in secret, in a dark place of the earth; I did not say to the seed of Jacob, ‘seek me in vain’; I, the Lord speak righteousness, I declare things that are right.”

  10. 10
    bornagain77 says:

    Moreover, there is the little matter that the finely tuned universal constants, which make inductive science possible in the first place, are completely antithetic to the entire ‘randomness’ postulate of naturalism.

    Induction is dependent on Theistic premises – Why Atheism Cannot Account for Science | James N. Anderson, PhD – video (conclusion at 17:40 minute mark)
    https://youtu.be/8FvwDdRH9pM?t=1060

  11. 11
    Silphium says:

    “They actually…”

    So this vaguely described group is homogeneous? Oh, “They.” Sorry. I missed that They is a proper noun because it was also at the beginning of the sentence. They’re the eponymous “Them.” Got it.

  12. 12
    bornagain77 says:

    of related note:

    A Fortunate Universe: Life in a Finely Tuned Cosmos
    by Geraint F. Lewis (Author), Luke A. Barnes (Author), Brian Schmidt (Foreword)
    https://www.amazon.com/Fortunate-Universe-Finely-Tuned-Cosmos/dp/1107156610

    “My colleagues, Geraint and Luke, in A Fortunate Universe, take you on a tour of the Cosmos in all of its glory, and all of its mystery. You will see that humanity appears to be part of a remarkable set of circumstances involving a special time around a special planet, which orbits a special star, all within a specially constructed Universe. It is these set of conditions that have allowed humans to ponder our place in space and time. I have no idea why we are here, but I do know the Universe is beautiful. A Fortunate Universe captures the mysterious beauty of the Cosmos in a way that all can share.”
    Brian Schmidt, Australian National University, Canberra, and Nobel Laureate in Physics (2011), from the Foreword

    “Geraint Lewis and Luke Barnes provide a breathtaking tour of contemporary physics from the subatomic to the cosmological scale. Everywhere they find the Universe to be fine-tuned for complex structure. If the quark masses, or the basic forces, or the cosmological constant had been much different, the Universe would have been a sterile wasteland. It seems that the only reactions are either to embrace a multiverse or a designer. The authors have constructed a powerful case for the specialness of our Universe.”
    Tim Maudlin, New York University

    “The Universe could have been of such a nature that no life at all could exist. The anthropic question asks why the constants of nature that enter various physical laws are such as to permit life to come into being. This engaging book is a well-written and detailed explanation of all the many ways these physical constants affect the possibility of life, considering atomic, nuclear and particle physics, astrophysics and cosmology. It then discusses in an open-minded way the variety of explanations one might give for this strange fine-tuning, possible solutions ranging from pure chance, existence of multiverses, or theistic explanations. The book is the most comprehensive current discussion of this intriguing range of issues. Highly recommended.”
    George Ellis, University of Cape Town

    “Lewis and Barnes’ book is the most up-to-date, accurate, and comprehensive explication of the evidence that the Universe is fine-tuned for life. It is also among the two most philosophically sophisticated treatments, all the while being accessible to a non-academic audience. I strongly recommend this book.”
    Robin Collins, Messiah College, Pennsylvania

  13. 13
    Timaeus says:

    Seversky wrote:

    “If naturalism is a religion to you, is there anything that isn’t? How do you define religion?”

    What’s the point in anyone here responding to your questions and objections, Seversky? Whenever anyone *does* respond, you never reply further. The last five times I’ve responded to you, you have rewarded my efforts with silence.

    What is it, Seversky? Are you too yellow-livered to stand your ground and debate? Aren’t you intellectually capable of anything more than drive-by shootings? That appears to be the case, the way you pop in and out of these columns, sticking in your jabs and then running like a rabbit when you get a response more intelligent than what you had counted on.

    I nominate Seversky for the “most irrelevant anti-ID commenter” award for 2016. A man who won’t stay to defend his positions when challenged is certainly irrelevant.

  14. 14
    rvb8 says:

    Tim, I suspect Seversky picks the posts that most offend his sense of reason. I choose posts that do that too, but also that tickle my fancy.
    Here at UD the phrase, ‘is that old canard being wheeled out again’, is frequently used by UDers to dissmiss legitimate and ananswered questions of your fellow UDers, by naturalists. “Who designed the designer?” “ID has no empirical evidence like real science!” etc.
    When you accuse someone of running away and not answering a question it sounds like a ‘pot-kettle’ situation.
    Also wading through BA and Kairos et al. is time consuming at best, painful at worst, and at the end the original questions are still unanswered.
    It seems when it comes to clarity, and economy of language, the naturalists prove far more effective; get your evidence together, present it, then we’ll stay longer to discuss.

  15. 15
    soundburger says:

    rvb8 writes, “We don’t have a high priest, unless you would like to throw Darwin’s name in the hat. ”
    Ah, but you do have a saint: Christopher Hitchens.

    Any time the man’s name comes up on an atheist/skeptic/rationalist site or on youtube, you are sure to see someone write ‘I miss Hitch’ as if they actually knew the man and had earned the right to refer to him so intimately.

    It is indeed odd to see this pouty, unsmiling, immature (he can be seen flipping off audiences who dare to applaud with something he disagrees with on numerous occasions) Iraq war cheerleader take on such a supernatural element of cultic devotion, and so soon after his death.

    A dozen or so years from now I suspect you will all figure out a way to canonize him, and find his visage appearing as mold on bread.

  16. 16
    kairosfocus says:

    RVB8, it is clear that you act as though rhetorical sniping is good enough to deal with major worldview issues. It doesn’t work that way — as you should know. In this thread, the definition of religion came up from Seversky, and in the compass of a one paragraph post, no 4 above, I showed why that definition is hard to do and must be broad in a way that (as there are non-theistic religions) will embrace many atheistical ideologies. Above, you sniffed something about high priests and the like while complaining about wading through . . . in context, a one paragraph comment (and in a context where you full well know that substantial matters often require substantial remarks to responsibly address them — especially in a context with hostile onlookers waiting to pounce). Many religions don’t have religious hierarchies, so that is irrelevant. I suggest that you do some re-thinking, if you intend to be a serious participant in discussion here at UD. KF

    PS: For reference, I clip:

    religion is perhaps better understood as a personal or organised worldview level framework and/or tradition that provides a core narrative for interpreting and working towards fulfilling one’s place in the world, i/l/o the perceived core nature and/or root cause of that reality, involving [perhaps implicit] guiding principles for thought, life and affairs, with formal or informal institutions and often involving designated leadership or classes of specially committed devotees.

  17. 17
    Timaeus says:

    rvb8:

    “When you accuse someone of running away and not answering a question it sounds like a ‘pot-kettle’ situation.”

    This certainly does not apply to me. I’ve never run away from a fight on this site in my life. I’m willing to go to the mat with Seversky — or you, or anyone — for as long as it takes to thrash out the issues. And as for your complaint about long posts, my posts are not as long as those of some others, and in any case, my last response to Seversky, about a month ago, was only a paragraph or two — and still he didn’t respond.

    I can also match any “naturalist” on this planet for “clarity, and economy of language.” Tell your friend Seversky to test me on that — if you can find him in the forest to which he has fled.

  18. 18
    Fair Witness says:

    @bornagain77 #9

    “theism predicted…” (repeated)

    You should avoid quoting someone who uses the word “predicted” when they should use “inferred”.

    It sounds like religion masquerading as science.

  19. 19
    bornagain77 says:

    Fair Witness, if you were truly worried about ‘religion masquerading as science’, then, instead of just being the atheistic troll that you are, you should rightly be all up in arms about Darwinian evolution being primarily based on faulty theological premises instead of being based on any sound empirical science.

    But before we get to that little detail of Darwinian evolution being a unfalsifiable pseudo-science, let’s back up a little and be VERY clear to the fact that ALL of science is dependent on basic Theistic presuppositions about the rational intelligibility of the universe and the ability of our mind to comprehend that rational intelligibility.

    The Great Debate: Does God Exist? – Justin Holcomb – audio of the 1985 Greg Bahnsen debate available at the bottom of the site
    Excerpt: When we go to look at the different world views that atheists and theists have, I suggest we can prove the existence of God from the impossibility of the contrary.
    The transcendental proof for God’s existence is that without Him it is impossible to prove anything. The atheist worldview is irrational and cannot consistently provide the preconditions of intelligible experience, science, logic, or morality. The atheist worldview cannot allow for laws of logic, the uniformity of nature, the ability for the mind to understand the world, and moral absolutes. In that sense the atheist worldview cannot account for our debate tonight.,,,
    http://justinholcomb.com/2012/.....god-exist/

    In fact, modern science was uniquely born out of, and is still dependent on, the Christian worldview:

    Science and Theism: Concord, not Conflict* – Robert C. Koons
    IV. The Dependency of Science Upon Theism (Page 21)
    Excerpt: Far from undermining the credibility of theism, the remarkable success of science in modern times is a remarkable confirmation of the truth of theism. It was from the perspective of Judeo-Christian theism—and from the perspective alone—that it was predictable that science would have succeeded as it has. Without the faith in the rational intelligibility of the world and the divine vocation of human beings to master it, modern science would never have been possible, and, even today, the continued rationality of the enterprise of science depends on convictions that can be reasonably grounded only in theistic metaphysics.
    http://www.robkoons.net/media/.....ffd524.pdf

    The truth about science and religion By Terry Scambray – August 14, 2014
    Excerpt: In 1925 the renowned philosopher and mathematician, Alfred North Whitehead speaking to scholars at Harvard said that science originated in Christian Europe in the 13th century. Whitehead pointed out that science arose from “the medieval insistence on the rationality of God, conceived as with the personal energy of Jehovah and with the rationality of a Greek philosopher”, from which it follows that human minds created in that image are capable of understanding nature.
    The audience, assuming that science and Christianity are enemies, was astonished.
    http://www.americanthinker.com.....igion.html

    The Threat to the Scientific Method that Explains the Spate of Fraudulent Science Publications – Calvin Beisner | Jul 23, 2014
    Excerpt: It is precisely because modern science has abandoned its foundations in the Biblical worldview (which holds, among other things, that a personal, rational God designed a rational universe to be understood and controlled by rational persons made in His image) and the Biblical ethic (which holds, among other things, that we are obligated to tell the truth even when it inconveniences us) that science is collapsing.
    As such diverse historians and philosophers of science as Alfred North Whitehead, Pierre Duhem, Loren Eiseley, Rodney Stark, and many others have observed,, science—not an occasional flash of insight here and there, but a systematic, programmatic, ongoing way of studying and controlling the world—arose only once in history, and only in one place: medieval Europe, once known as “Christendom,” where that Biblical worldview reigned supreme. That is no accident. Science could not have arisen without that worldview.
    http://townhall.com/columnists...../page/full
    Several other resources backing up this claim are available, such as Thomas Woods, Stanley Jaki, David Linberg, Edward Grant, J.L. Heilbron, and Christopher Dawson.

    Moreover, if we cast aside those basic Theistic presuppositions about the rational intelligibility of the universe and the ability of our mind to comprehend that rational intelligibility, and try to use naturalism as our basis for practicing science then everything within that atheistic/naturalistic worldview, (i.e. sense of self. observation of reality, free will, even reality itself), collapses into self refuting, unrestrained, flights of fantasies and imagination.

    Darwinian evolution, and atheism/naturalism in general, are built entirely upon a framework of illusions and fantasy – June 2016
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Q94y-QgZZGF0Q7HdcE-qdFcVGErhWxsVKP7GOmpKD6o/edit

    In fact, besides naturalism NOT being the basis of science, it would be hard to fathom a more anti-scientific worldview than atheistic naturalism turns out to be.

    Where Darwinian evolution goes off the rails, theologically speaking, as far as science itself is concerned, is that, while Darwin paid lip service to God as a first cause, instead of acknowledging its dependency on basic theological presuppositions, Darwinian evolution uses bad liberal theology to try to establish the legitimacy of its atheistic claims, all the while forgetting that it itself is dependent on basic Theistic presuppositions about the rational intelligibility of the universe and of our mind to comprehend it.
    In fact, Darwin’s book, ‘Origin’, is replete with bad liberal theology. In fact, Charles Darwin’s college degree was not in math, or any other field that would be conducive to establishing a entirely new field of hard science, but his degree instead was in (bad liberal) theology:

    Charles Darwin, Theologian: Major New Article on Darwin’s Use of Theology the Origin of Species – May 2011
    Excerpt: The Origin supplies abundant evidence of theology in action; as Dilley observes:
    I have argued that, in the first edition of the Origin, Darwin drew upon at least the following positiva theological claims in his case for descent with modification (and against special creation):
    1. Human beings are not justified in believing that God creates in ways analogous to the intellectual powers of the human mind.
    2. A God who is free to create as He wishes would create new biological limbs de novo rather than from a common pattern.
    3. A respectable deity would create biological structures in accord with a human conception of the ‘simplest mode’ to accomplish the functions of these structures.
    4. God would only create the minimum structure required for a given part’s function.
    5. God does not provide false empirical information about the origins of organisms.
    6. God impressed the laws of nature on matter.
    7. God directly created the first ‘primordial’ life.
    8. God did not perform miracles within organic history subsequent to the creation of the first life.
    9. A ‘distant’ God is not morally culpable for natural pain and suffering.
    10. The God of special creation, who allegedly performed miracles in organic history, is not plausible given the presence of natural pain and suffering.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....46391.html

    To this day, Darwinists are still dependent on bad liberal theology, instead of empirical science, in order to try to establish the supposedly ‘scientific’ legitimacy of Darwinian claims:

    Nothing in biology makes sense except in light of theology? – Dilley S. – 2013
    Abstract
    This essay analyzes Theodosius Dobzhansky’s famous article, “Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light of Evolution,” in which he presents some of his best arguments for evolution. I contend that all of Dobzhansky’s arguments hinge upon sectarian claims about God’s nature, actions, purposes, or duties. Moreover, Dobzhansky’s theology manifests several tensions, both in the epistemic justification of his theological claims and in their collective coherence. I note that other prominent biologists–such as Mayr, Dawkins, Eldredge, Ayala, de Beer, Futuyma, and Gould–also use theology-laden arguments. I recommend increased analysis of the justification, complexity, and coherence of this theology.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23890740

    Of supplemental note, besides Christianity providing the proper foundation so as to practice modern science in the first place, Christianity also offers the correct solution for the much sought after ‘theory of everything’ so as to bring a semblance of closure to modern science:

    (Centrality Concerns) The Resurrection of Jesus Christ from Death as the “Theory of Everything” – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8uHST2uFPQY&list=PLtAP1KN7ahia8hmDlCYEKifQ8n65oNpQ5&index=4

    Verse and Music:

    Colossians 1:15-20
    The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

    The Great I Am – Phillips, Craig & Dean
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y_VR-zwp2KA

  20. 20
    Seversky says:

    kairosfocus @ 4

    Seversky: try, the view that evolutionary materialistic scientism is an ideological commitment with worldview level elements, arguably substantially equivalent to and functioning as a de facto religion.

    […]

    So, religion is perhaps better understood as a personal or organised worldview level framework and/or tradition that provides a core narrative for interpreting and working towards fulfilling one’s place in the world, i/l/o the perceived core nature and/or root cause of that reality, involving [perhaps implicit] guiding principles for thought, life and affairs, with formal or informal institutions and often involving designated leadership or classes of specially committed devotees. KF

    Has it not occurred to you that the broader the definition – or range of definitions – of a word becomes, the less meaning it has? If a philosophical or metaphysical perspective like naturalism counts as a religion then what about post-modernism or logical positivism? Does being a Trekkie or a Star Wars fan or a supporter of Manchester United count as a religion? Where do you draw the line? When News calls naturalism a religion, she is deriding it. It’s not meant as compliment but as a criticism. Which is odd given that she appears to hold religious belief a the highest form of knowledge. If practically anything people believe in is treated as a religion then what does calling something a religion actually tell us about it?

  21. 21
    Seversky says:

    Timaeus @ 13

    Seversky wrote:

    “If naturalism is a religion to you, is there anything that isn’t? How do you define religion?”

    What’s the point in anyone here responding to your questions and objections, Seversky? Whenever anyone *does* respond, you never reply further. The last five times I’ve responded to you, you have rewarded my efforts with silence.

    Like most other contributors here, as rvb8 says, I pick and choose the posts I comment on, first, because it’s plainly impractical to try and reply to everyone and, second, I don’t have the time that some others must have to post in the quantity they do. I’m sorry if you feel I’ve ignored you. To make up for it, I promise to answer any comments you direct towards me here. So, what did you want to say?

  22. 22
    rvb8 says:

    Kairos,
    “religion as global concept must be broader than that.”
    No it doesn’t, the dictionary is perfectly accurate, in describing religion as a belief in a ‘superhuman’ power, usually including a specific deity.
    Your obfuscation is meant to dirty the waters of the clear demarcation between science and religion so that you can include murky systems such as ID.
    It won’t work! Science is such a rational, logical, evidence based way of knowing our world, that it would be a disservice to religion, and the faithful, to hold them to the same standards of evidence. A standard BTW, that they should never seriously attempt, as it leads to tears, anger, and not uncommonly tantrums.
    Stop inventing definitions for words already plainly understood.

  23. 23
    Timaeus says:

    Seversky @21:

    Thank you for responding. What I would like most, at the moment, is an answer to my previous comments at:

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....al-theism/

    You will find my response to your #4 at my #22.

    If you are inclined to reply to that one, it might be best if you replied there, rather than here, since it’s on a very different topic.

  24. 24
    kairosfocus says:

    Seversky & RVB8: You will see that a responsible definition must capture known cases. When such is done for religion (which includes non-theistic traditional and modern religions), it reveals that for key instance several major ideologies are in fact de facto religions. Political Messianism turns out to be fundamentally a range of Christian heresies. Evolutionary Materialistic scientism and its underlying atheistical view also turns out to be a non-theistic de facto religion, with institutionalised, atheism-captive Science as eschatological hope and saviour figure. And no, that’s not broadening a definition to meaninglessness, it in fact surfaces just why both political messianism and atheistical naturalism are so stridently hostile to the Judaeo-Christian heritage of our civilisation: they demand rival ultimate loyalties — i.e. are modern idolatries — and hope to supplant that heritage. In theological terms [kindly cf the Barmen Theses penned by Barth et al in 1934], they thus reveal themselves to be animated by the demonic spirit of anti-christ. Time for worldview exorcism . . . yes, Legion, EXORCISM . . . through identifying, exposing and overturning their fallacious arguments and deceptive schemes of thought erected to subvert and/or lock out the knowledge of God that is first given by conscience-guided reason that serves the truth and the right, then reflects on a world that is manifestly designed by a powerful mind beyond our pay grade — better, order of existence. Deliverance by metanoia, as a first step to rescuing our civilisation. KF

    PS: Note how Wikipedia is forced to make a telling admission against known ideological trend:

    Religion is a cultural system of behaviors and practices, world views, sacred texts, holy places, ethics, and societal organisation that relate humanity to what an anthropologist has called “an order of existence”.[1] Different religions may or may not contain various elements, ranging from the “divine”,[2] “sacred things”,[3] “faith”,[4] a “supernatural being or supernatural beings”[5] or “[…] some sort of ultimacy and transcendence that will provide norms and power for the rest of life.”[6]

    –> Note the telling concession: ” . . . or may not

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