God and the Folly of Faith: The Incompatibility of Science & Religion
It is a common view among historians, sociologists and some theistic scientists that science and religion have never been in serious conflict, with some also making bizarre claims such as Christianity is responsible for the development of science. In a sweeping historical survey however, Victor Stenger makes a convincing case in his book that not only proves this notion false but also proves that Christianity was in fact responsible for holding back the progress of science for more than a thousand years.
Stenger makes his case by guiding readers through ancient Greek science, leading them on with the Renaissance and Enlightenment and finally concluding with contemporary advances in cosmology and physics. He also notes that the scientific revolution witnessed during the 17th people revolted against longstanding ecclesiastic authorities, which eventually led to the Renaissance and Reformation that opened up avenues for newer thoughts and actions.
God and the Folly of Faith is a hard-hitting and thorough critique of religion that anyone interested in learning about the relationship between religion and science must read. In the book, Stenger goes on to explain how science and religion are principally incompatible in different areas – from the origin of complexity to the origin of the universe and its physical parameters, from reductionism to holism, from the source of morality to the nature of the mind and consciousness.
In the end, the author, who is excessively troubled by the negative influence that organized religion exerts on society and politics, points out several antiscientific attitudes engrained in popular religion that are misused to suppress accurate results of globally important issues like environmental degradation and overpopulation.
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