Science Uprising — Throwing Off the Materialist Rules That Hinder Science and Dehumanize Us All
You’ve got some sense of what science is about, maybe a lot more than just a sense. Does this sound familiar? “Science can only think about nature and natural explanations. The minute you try to explain anything in nature by going outside of nature, you’re not doing science any longer.” It makes sense, right? I mean, why would anyone even put quotes around “science” that way? Doesn’t everyone think that way?
But this isn’t science. It’s a rule some people decided to impose on science, based on a philosophy they’ve chosen for unscientific reasons. Still the rule (called materialism or naturalism) spreads through the air, like some odorless but deadly pollutant. People think it’s science, when in reality it’s bad news for science, bad news for us all.
Naturalism’s Destructive Implications
Naturalism has some really implausible implications. How’s this for starters: As far as science knows, you don’t exist as a conscious person who can make your own decisions. You only think you do. Honestly: That’s exactly what flows logically out of this brand of “science.” And if that’s not bad enough, it leads to all manner of disturbing questions. Are you really responsible for what you choose to do? Does science itself have any reason to think it knows anything about reality?
Apply it to current events: Does abortion kill a morally significant human being? How about human euthanasia? “Science” says, “No one can say. ‘Morally significant’ isn’t one of the categories we study. But we do know it annoys people if you limit their personal freedom, so on balance ‘science’ would have to be ‘pro-choice.'”
The questions really do go down to that basic a level. That’s one reason I’m sure these rules aren’t science at all, even though a lot of us have been duped into thinking so. The truth is actually the opposite: the rules aren’t even good for science.
Pro-Science but Not Pro-‘Science’
Every now and then I need to repeat it, since so many people think opposing the materialist rules amounts to fighting science. I’m very pro-science. Born in the city which at the time had more Ph.D. research scientists than any non-university city in the world (Midland, Michigan), I grew up loving science.
Thankfully, though, I’ve also learned that real science is not identical to “science” done by materialist rules. I’ve learned, too, that what I said earlier about it being a philosophy doesn’t go far enough. It’s actually a self-contradictory, dehumanizing, destructive philosophy.
Which is why I’m so excited to see the Discovery Institute is releasing a new video series, Science Uprising. It’s coming out in six episodes, one week at a time. We’ve got the first week’s video here, plus you won’t want to miss The Stream’s Jay Richards’ further explanation, presented in the bonus video following it.
Tom Gilson (@TomGilsonAuthor) is a senior editor with The Stream, and the author of A Christian Mind: Thoughts on Life and Truth in Jesus Christ and Critical Conversations: A Christian Parent’s Guide to Discussing Homosexuality with Teens, and the lead editor of True Reason: Confronting the Irrationality of the New Atheism.