What do we discuss? Everything!
There are no “difficult” or unwelcome questions in discussions about science and religion. Elena teaches students to share their beliefs and doubts openly. During her interactive and entertaining presentations, Elena gives students a three step formula in how to deal with controversial information. She also teaches audience how to be tolerant and respectful toward diverse viewpoints while maintaining a critical and open-minded approach to all ideas.
Is it possible to prove God? Do science and religion coexist? Is atheism scientific? Is God greater than Truth? Is there an objective Right and Wrong? Are beliefs logical? How to reconcile opposing beliefs? And so on…
Are traditional debates stuck in a deadlock?
Humankind has a long history of religious wars and fights between people who sincere believe that their vision of God is the only possible explanation of reality.
At the same time, in the modern world we have thousands of different religious and spiritual teachings. Inevitably a logical question arises: which belief is true and how do we find the one Truth among controversial ideas?
It’s important to find a neutral platform, which would allow people of different views to share their beliefs and personal spiritual experiences without hatred or rivalry, but with the goal of enriching overall understanding of the most sacred thing we all have – the Truth.
If you enjoy watching or participating in traditional debates related to science and reliegion, you have probably noticed that they don’t go anywhere. Usually, when Christians and atheists present their views, they zero in on each other’s perceived faults, and disagree on moral issues, the sense of life, and the kindness of God.
But then what? Nothing. It seems that they don’t move even an inch toward better understanding each other and reconciling in any capacity.
It seems that there is only one point upon which atheists and Christians should agree: ultimately, science says nothing about existence of God.
However, atheists and Christians interpret this fact very differently. As a result they confidently jump to opposite conclusions. Atheists state that there is no God because there are no objective scientific proofs supporting His existence. Christians strike back with the following counter argument: God can exist because science can’t prove His absence.
In our world, science is the highest authority on truth because it provides logical evidences thus excluding multiple interpretations and opinions. Formulas are ultimately unbiased. It’s hard to argue with gravity or the speed of light. The power of scientific logic makes truth stand like Everest – strong, objective and impregnable against any doubts.
A deadlock is reached when believers and atheists continue arguing and appealing to their personal experiences or sacred scriptures without moving closer to the objective truth, which has to be logically proven. Then the following question can be asked:
Does science really fail to prove the existence of God or is there another reason why science is silent?
Maybe it’s not just the fault of science, but rather the fault of people who focus their attention on incorrect disciplines? The modern tree of science has hundreds of branches: formal sciences, physical, natural, social, computer, political, etc.
To understand why debates are not productive, it’s important to step back and ask the following: which scientific disciplines cannot prove the existence of God and which can? And, when debaters use the word “science,” what do they actually mean? These two simple questions help us make an interesting discovery.
Historically, the word “science” has represented only the physical and natural sciences, ones that measure and describe patterns of physical reality. Reality, however, doesn’t solely consist of the physical: we also have thoughts, feelings, memories, desires, etc. For instance, our emotions of suffering or love are not measurable but they are still very real.
Do physical and natural sciences address the sphere of human emotions? Clearly not. They also don’t address such phenomenon like personal spiritual experiences and they don’t cross into the dominions of history, economics, or psychology.
When debaters focus their attention on physical and natural sciences, they narrow expectations of proof of God to very specific systems, which deal only with a tangible world. But God has to be an intangible ultimate power by definition! We don’t use telescopes to understand algebra – would they help us reveal mystery of God?
It seems that people have been standing in front of the wrong door, knocking, banging, and kicking it in vain for centuries! It’s time to look around and ask a simple question: do we have other sciences that can be applicable to both the physical systems and everything that constitutes human reality?
Luckily, these sciences DO exist!
Is there a way out of the deadlock? Is reconciliation of different views possible?
Yes! Everything changes the moment we understand that we always have to deal with information and systems regardless of any knowledge or experiences. After all, we use information to describe physical laws or our feelings.
Is information logical? Absolutely! Otherwise, how would it make sense? How would we understand what we feel or what we see?
Because everything in our universe is either a system or a part of a system, people use logic and information to describe various systems. It’s a new concept for the public – traditionally, we are taught to perceive reality not as systems but as the tangible world we can sense.
Modern science has reached amazing conclusions in exploring the outer world, from galaxies to elementary particles. At the same time, science is still infantile in terms of understanding our intangible inner world. Questions regarding what we are or our life’s purpose are still the most difficult to answer.
Here’s the good news: when we turn our attention from traditional natural/physical sciences toward system-informational disciplines, we finally move out of our debate deadlock and get new, unlimited opportunities to see the old things in a new, neutral way. It leads us to understanding the core reasons why there is no real conflict between science and religion and why science and religion coexist!