Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Christianity and Science

Or, more specifically, Catholicism and science. This post by Stephen Barr at First Things points out that they have gotten along a whole lot more than one might expect:

There is a template that many books on science or science history follow when they touch upon the relations of science and religion: Bold Scientist Persecuted by the Church for Thinking New Thoughts....

However, we religious folk deserve a lot of the blame for the distortions of scientific history, because we have allowed the real story to go largely untold, when we ought to be at the forefront in telling it. Most people, including most scientists, do not realize that the majority of the great founders of modern science, up until at least the middle of the nineteenth century, were religious believers and often very devout. This includes such giants as Copernicus, Tycho Brahe, Kepler, Galileo, Newton, Boyle, Lavoisier, Faraday, Maxwell, and Pasteur. Even less well known is that many important scientific discoveries were made by clergymen.
Read the whole post, noting all of the links to biographical information on the people he mentions. Excellent work.

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