Evolutionary theory cannot be falsified (Introduction)

by dhw, Thursday, March 30, 2017, 13:35 (112 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

QUOTE: "Being an evolutionist means there is no bad news.”
dhw: Being a theist means there is no bad news. Whatever happens happens because that is the way God wants it to happen. The God theory cannot be falsified.
Three points to be made here: 1) Hunter’s attack on the theory of evolution can be applied equally to the theory of God. “Sauce for the goose and the gander.” 2) We still talk of the “theory” of evolution, and I myself believe in it. I would never claim that it is “scientifically” true. (NB: Please remember the theory itself is not atheistic.) 3) Most important of all, I do not believe that science provides the only avenue to truth (whatever “truth” may be), and so in my own subjective quest for that truth, falsifiability as a criterion is actually irrelevant. The question is always "Can/Do I believe it?", not "Can it be falsified?"

DAVID: Falsifiability applies only to proposed scientific theory about a specific process or event, not an attempt at belief. Science can be used in the search for religious belief.

There is no disagreement here. My point is that falsifiability (not science!) is irrelevant to my quest for truth. Nobody “knows” the truth, and so we can only end up with belief, whether it emerges from science, psychic experiences, philosophy, religion, upbringing… whatever.

TONY: Science is supposed to be an objective, observable, testable process for learning concrete facts about the natural world. For science, belief is irrelevent, as is faith, and it cannot be used to study God, only his works. Both religion and science are avenues for understanding, but it IS important not to let them stray from their paths or the each lose the very thing that makes the wonderful.

Again I agree, but I think what David meant was that you can use science to find evidence that God exists. Whether someone believes the conclusions drawn from that evidence is another matter.


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