Science and Religion?

Want an interesting experience?

The BBC World Service’s Programme “World Have Your Say” had students in Africa discussing Science and Religion:

It was one of the more bizarre experiences I had this morning.


34 thoughts on “Science and Religion?

  1. Listening to the program now. And I also noticed the law of gravity comment. Then there was the walking on water thing.

    It seems to be an education problem. Or more precisely, a problem of thinking. For starters, some people never get it that you can’t cite a source to prove the authenticity of the cited source*. i.e. “The Bible is true because the Bible says it is true.”

    I suspect the new Pope was chosen for this very reason. South America and Africa are the newest and fastest growing segments of the Roman Catholic Church.
    1. He’s a white guy, but he’s still from a mostly 3rd World area.
    2. He’s really Italian, but he’s still from a mostly 3rd World area
    3. The Bible plays well in these emerging areas because the general population lacks a strong science background.

    And the monkey comment slayed me. My favorite Toledo area religious freak is always saying “You mean to say we’re related to monkeys?” Anyone with a basic education would know that evolution does NOT say that as in “My ancestors must be monkeys according to what you say.” We’ve all heard the bigoted Bible-thumpers whisper “They’re just one step past an ape” when talking of people from Africa. How ironic that an African would protest that comparison when most of the missionaries teaching them the Bible are from the very same bigoted group that has been saying that about them for years.

    I’ve heard some very disturbing things regarding African governments lately, but dismissed them as “slow news day” junk. And I wondered why the fringe has been so successful when they send people over there. This program kind of explains that success. But on the other hand, this program could have just as easily taken place in Ohio’s Fifth Congressional District during one of Latta’s phone townmeetings.

    Just caught the part where the narrator mentions “semen” and the crowds reacts uncomfortably. Can’t explain safe sex to people if you have to explain how reproduction works first.

    * Someone commented when I checked out the value of a source before wasting my time. If I followed every source recommended, I wouldn’t have any free time. If you know the background of a source you can better understand what they are trying to say. You can also save yourself time.

    1. The Bible plays well in these emerging areas because the general population lacks a strong science background.

      …and the people there are downtrodden and are looking for a ‘savior’ to take them away from this miserable world and to be happy with him forever…and ever…and

      1. I’m trying to think of pairs of things or pairs of ideas which are polar opposites. Fire and ice is nice. Pepper and salt. Love and Hate.

        Yet, few come close to ‘religion and science.’

        I look forward to my AM coffee and my click on the NewScience link I have bookmarked. It is pure ‘heaven’ for me to read the newest science discoveries in the past 24 hours. It is endless, boundless and an endless untapped source of knowledge.

        Today’s top story is of a team of bioengineers at Stanford who tells of a “biological transistor”made from genetic material — DNA and RNA — in place of gears or electrons. The team calls its biological transistor the

        Recently there was a story of a ‘cloaking device’ that brings memories of Star Trek. On a more serious note, a new idea about prostate cancer treatment was heralded two days ago. There are also a continuous set of stories and discoveries about space and time.

        I can only imagine the fear in fundamentalists engendered by such stories. I am quite certain that they would not sit by their computer with their morning cup of coffee eagerly reading the latest discoveries in ScienceDaily. With each new ‘revelation’ their religious foundation become more brittle, more fractured, more unstable. The ‘truths’ in that book written millennia ago dissolve like a sandcastle at high tide.

        Fire and ice; oil and water; science and religion. Immiscible.

        1. I wasn’t going to quote the people, but it did have a lot of the “well, the Bible says…” statements.

          The Bible is true because the Bible says it is true…

          Not a good argument.

  2. Yesterday, the Pope “humbled” himself by washing the feet of jailed
    juveniles. It included two women, and the media is all a flutter over
    how significant it is for the Pope to humble himself this way. They say
    that this is a Pope of change. Should we care?

      1. Hard to imagine a Pope elected from a group that has been appointed by his two predecessors who be much different (including one Pope who is suspect of knocking off his “progressive” predecessor). .

    1. Yes. I’ll be on my knees with rosary in hand from 12-3PM today. I ate a half-bowl of Cheerios and a glass of warm water for breakfast. Lunch will be a dry piece of toast and tea. Of course, nothing in between.

      Surely, my friend, you are doing much the same down in Bible Land.

      1. I couldn’t get the hang of Easter, until I figured out it was actually passover.

        I go to a seder hosted by one of my wife’s cousins, which actually has more Christians present than Jews!

        Also, there is a more of a social justice significance to the Passover tradition.

      2. I didn’t have meat all day. But is was just because I’m cutting down on the amount of meat I eat everyday.

  3. Will someone please explain to me the logic of Easter? This Jesus figure had to die (on a cross) because of our sin. Our sin was Eve eating the forbidden apple. Seriously? If I had ever thought I was damned from the beginning, I sure would have led a way different life. But that could explain the attitude of some siblings.

    1. I thought apples were good for you . i.e. An apple a day keeps the doctor away.
    2. Why forbid Eve in the first place? Would this be similar to training a pet? People with a partner know trying to train a spouse is a waste of time. And could get you in hot water pretty fast!
    3. Why blame us? Shouldn’t Eve be blamed? Or at least just blame women for never listening (tongue in cheek)?
    4. Isn’t death by cross hanging kind of severe for just eating fruit?
    5. How come if Jesus rose from the dead he’s not considered a zombie?
    6. Anyone else hear about the Italian scientists’ (no conflict of interest there) claims that the Shroud of Turin is real? If the blood is supposed to be human, how come the stain is supposed to be “miraculously” formed? The blood is real, but the stain isn’t? (Any real stain would not form an in-proportion human head including hair.)
    7. Does anyone else find it ironic you can’t eat meat, but fish is OK per the orders of some fishermen? Talk about creating a demand for your product.

    And anyone claiming the Bible is supposed to be just symbolic fables should be smacked up side the head. I mean, isn’t the Evangelical movement based on a literal translation of the Bible?

      1. By the way, fundamentalists are not longer referring to it as Easter Sunday. Rather, it is Resurrection Sunday. Easter, after the goddess Oestre, is too bunny-filled for the ‘righteous.’

    1. Why? Because the Bible and the Bible-pimpers say so. Of course, the pimpers, the middlemen between the divine and the human, take a nice cut, thank you.

  4. A man is driving along a highway and sees a rabbit
    jump out across the middle of the road.

    He swerves to avoid hitting it, but unfortunately the
    rabbit jumps right in front of the car.

    The driver, a sensitive man as well as an animal
    lover, pulls over and gets out to see
    what has become of the rabbit.
    Much to his dismay, the rabbit is
    the Easter Bunny, and he is DEAD .

    The driver feels so awful that he begins to cry.
    A beautiful blonde woman driving down the highway
    sees a man crying on the side of the road
    and pulls over.

    She steps out of the car and asks the man
    what’s wrong.

    “I feel terrible,” ! he explains,
    “I accidentally hit the Easter Bunny with my car
    and KILLED HIM.”

    The blonde says,”Don’t worry.”

    She runs to her car and pulls out a spray can.
    She walks over to the limp, dead Easter Bunny,
    bends down, and sprays the contents onto him.

    The Easter Bunny jumps up, waves its paw at the
    two of them and hops off down the road.

    Ten feet away he stops, turns around and waves
    again, he hops down the road another 10 feet,
    turns and waves, hops another ten feet,
    turns and waves, and repeats this again and again
    and again and again, until he hops out of sight.

    The man is astonished.
    He runs over to the woman and demands,

    “What is in that can?
    What did you spray on the Easter Bunny ?”

    The woman turns the can around
    so that the man can read the label.

    It says,

    “Hair Spray
    Restores life to dead hair,
    and adds permanent wave.”

    Happy Easter!! !

  5. And for our more “rural” friends:

    Here comes peter cottontail coming down the bunny trail.

  6. Jesus is on the cross and says, “Psst. Peter. Peter! Come here.” so Peter climbs up the cross and leans in close so he can hear Jesus speak saying “Yes, My Lord? What is it?” And Jesus says, “I can see your house from here.”

  7. Jesus walks into a hotel, puts some nails on the counter and said, “Can you put me up for the night?”

  8. Jesus walks up to a crowd of people getting ready to stone a lady to death for committing adultery. Jesus says, ” Whoever is without sin may cast the first stone.” So this lady walks up with a big ol’ rock and smashes it down on the poor lady and smashes her head wide open. The lady dusts off her hands and starts walking away, and Jesus shakes his head and says, “Mom, sometimes you really piss me off.”

  9. If Catholics call the day that Jesus died ‘Good’ Friday, then just imagine how ecstatic they’ll be when they find out that God doesn’t exist!

  10. A friend was in front of me coming out of church one day, and the preacher was standing at the door as he always is to shake hands. He grabbed my friend by the hand and pulled him aside.

    The Pastor said to him, “You need to join the Army of the Lord!”

    My friend replied, “I’m already in the Army of the Lord, Pastor.”

    Pastor questioned, “How come I don’t see you except at Christmas and Easter?”

    He whispered back, “I’m in the secret service.

  11. What did Jesus say when he was up on the cross?

    “This was one Hell of a way to spend my Easter vacation.”

  12. What I don’t get is why Jesus didn’t close the stone door of the tomb – was he born in a barn or something?

  13. The Pope calls together all the cardinals for an important meeting at the Vatican.

    “I have some good news and some bad news,” said his holiness. “The good news is … Jesus Christ has returned to earth. In fact, I spoke to him on the phone this morning.”

    (The crowd goes wild.)

    “Wait,” said the pope. “The bad news is … he was calling from Salt Lake City.”

  14. Roman soldier looking up at Jesus says ” Would you mind crossing your legs?
    I only have one nail.”

  15. Easter : The day when Jesus rose from the dead to feast on the brains of the living, which we now symbolize with pretty colored eggs.

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