Science does not care what we believe
Science is not a belief system. It does not care what we think. We can not compare it to religion which is based on faith.
I see that most people are confused about evolution. They understand it to mean that man evolved from monkeys. That is not what evolution means. Men and monkeys share a common ancestor. That does not mean we evolved from monkeys. It means we branched off into different directions from a common ancestor. In fact we share the same family tree with plants.
The people who argue that science is also based on faith question how we know what happened in the past because no one was there to witness evolution. But science extrapolates into the past and the future through observation.
If we can measure the current state of the universe, then we can extrapolate into the past and the future. It doesn’t matter whether we believe the results or not. We are able to build technology around us because of the consistency of science.
The sun will rise and set whether we believe it not. The smartphone you use to read this article converts electromagnetic waves into text and images whether you believe it or not.
I think science skeptics are just not aware that they’re using the practical applications of scientific discovery to argue against science. Imagine if the functionality of gadgets depended on your faith in order to work. Imagine if the television stopped working because you had no faith in science. We expect these gadgets to just work.
One of the techniques we use to extrapolate into the past is carbon dating. We have figured out the half life of radioactive elements such as carbon-14. Carbon-14 is the radioactive isotope of carbon. The most abundant isotope of carbon is carbon-12. By measuring the current activity of the carbon-14 isotope in a fossil, we can extrapolate into the past to calculate its biological age.
The fact that we do not understand how science works does not mean that we need faith for it to work. It works whether we believe it or not. When you switch on a light bulb you know that it will Work whether you understand electromagnetic induction or not.
There’s no point comparing science and religion because they serve different purposes in our lives. Our physical needs are met by scientific applications but some people choose religion for their spiritual needs.
We will always ask the Big questions such as the meaning of life. Those are not scientific questions. They are philosophical questions. Religion tries to find meaning to philosophical questions with a variety of interpretations. It is wrong to expect science to answer philosophical questions.
Science is based on investigating our observations of physical phenomena. We use the scientific method of inquiry to investigate our observations. But we also want to understand our purpose in the grand scheme of things. Maybe there is no purpose. Maybe the purpose of life is to create our own purpose. Some people choose religion to find purpose.
I think the purpose of life is to create our own purpose. Some people choose the religious doctrines to find purpose and meaning but some don’t.
Some people think science is in competition with religion. They think that you’re either for science or for religion. I think that should not be the case. The two serve different purposes to different people.