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Can Religious Faith and Science Co-exist?
Religious faith promotes unscientific thought.
Faith sometimes encourages the abdication of investigation by attributing physical phenomena to supernatural causes when a natural cause is yet unknown--the so-called "
God of the Gaps
Good science requires methodological naturalism, as miracles by definition cannot be proven.
A faith-based hypothesis discourages alternate ideas and rejects plausible opposing ideas.
The social and well organized nature of religion results in forming extremely strong lobby groups, which in turn start dictating what topics science can or cannot research.
The acceptance of certain ideas without (at least eventual) question is antithetical to the scientific process, and the proliferation of this faith-based thinking can stifle science.
For instance, Christianity is founded on the belief in resurrection of Jesus Christ, while very long term observation of human mortality is evidence that resurrection is impossible.
Many religious faiths directly contradict scientific facts.
Some religious texts promote experimentation and scientific thought.
The scientific method itself must be taken on faith, because its validity relies on several fundamental ideas about the nature of reality that cannot be justified scientifically. Even if such ideas seem obvious, their truth is far from logical necessity, but must be accepted "on faith".
This is true of only a shrinking subset of definitions of "faith". The meaning of faith in our discourse is in flux, and bending towards compatibility with scientific thought.
Faith is only unscientific if it is valued above scientific approaches in situations that science has a better framework for exploring.
Dogmas contain unscientific thoughts. Not faith. Scientists can believe in aliens, god(s), and other ethereal hyper-dimensional entities to have created the universe.
Faith provides a foundation for scientific thought.
Faith is the impetus for scientific thought. It is in essence an affront, a challenge to migrate faith to fact and reset a new belief.