• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

An Introduction To Science and Religion.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

AN INTRODUCTION TO SCIENCE AND RELIGION ESSAY QUESTION 1) Explain two scientific accounts of the origins of the universe. The first account that I will explain is the Big Bang theory. In 1929 Edwin P. Hubble, observed a 'red shift' in the light coming from distant galaxies, this led to the theory that the universe is expanding in all directions. If we assume that galaxies have always been moving apart at the speeds we now observe, there must have been a time, many, many years ago, when all the galaxies in the Universe were in the same place. In other words, the universe must have begun with a colossal explosion or a 'big bang'. Additionally it is possible to calculate, from Hubble's measurements, when this Big Bang occurred. Using Hubble's Law we can establish that the universe was created around 20 billion years ago. The position from which the existing universe expanded in an immense explosion of vast amounts of heat and energy is called a spacetime singularity. It is a point from which space and time have come, not a point within space and time. This is a vital characteristic of the theory. In the Big Bang, time and space were created in unison with an explosion that flung matter outwards through space. The metaphor that can be used is that it is though we are in an expanding bubble, as scientists believe that the universe is expanding daily. ...read more.

Middle

Assess this view in the light of any scientific and theological accounts that you have studied. A common understanding of the relationship between religion and science is that they stand in opposition to each other. On the one hand you have religious belief with its foundational premise that God is the reason why the universe and everything in it exists. On the other hand you have the sciences with their initial principle that the explanation for why things happen in the universe and why anything is here does not require God just good science. However, the scientist turned Anglican priest John Polkinghorne believes Christianity should work within the context of a modern scientific understanding and try to bring together both sides. In other words, science and religion should fund each other rather than work against each other. Polkinghorne clearly believes it is possible for humans to observe the world in order to understand more about God. Such a belief also influenced the work of such scientists as Isaac Newton (1642-1727) and it was also on this premise, that to understand the world is to understand God, that some of the arguments for the existence of God were developed (E.g. the Design Argument). Concerning theological and scientific accounts of the universe, we can consider the Big Bang Theory, a scientific account of the origin of the universe. Is it adequate enough to say all that needs to be said? ...read more.

Conclusion

The Bible is a compilation of events and oral and religious traditions which have been collected in an arranged order. It is not to be read as a structured order of events, but rather to make people achieve a greater understanding of their purpose and place in the world, science simply cannot offer this. Biblical accounts attempt to explain that the world that God has created as essentially good, yet also with its imperfections and wrongs, e.g. the Fall of Man, Adam and Eve. The Genesis creation myth is clearly not a scientific account, I believe, instead that it is an analogy. One obviously can see that theological accounts on the creation of the universe are never going to explain how we are here, but instead provides a fundamental message for people. They question why we are here, which to many religious believers is paramount. That is not to say that scientific accounts are invalid, without them, we would have little knowledge about our scientific history and surroundings. Theological and scientific arguments can never be placed beside one another because they seek different answers. I feel though, that theological accounts should not be overlooked and seen to add nothing to our understanding and merely "muddy the waters." However, they are ostensibly ineffective to the atheist, particularly in our ever more secular culture where individuals on the whole are becoming less religious. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Existence of God section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Existence of God essays

  1. "Discuss critically religious and secular ethical arguments about environmental issues"

    However, in light of The Flood, when God Himself destroyed nearly all life on Earth (Genesis 6:17 - "I am going to bring floodwaters on the earth to destroy all life under the heavens, every creature that has the breath of life in it.

  2. Examine the differences which may exist between a religious and scientific interpretation of the ...

    Religion was at its most powerful, when most of the world was left in ignorance, but gradually science has begun to explain what was once viewed as miracles caused solely by the power of God. This explanation of the issue does however seem to be scornful of the church, whereas

  1. Explain the Ontological argument.

    Swinburne took the example of death, and argued that despite its suffering, it is nevertheless essential to the freewill defence. This is because death means that the chances that each life contained are limited. This is essential because only a limited lifespan means we are genuinely responsible for our actions.

  2. A Big Bang Cosmological Argument for God's Nonexistence

    and then explode in an infinitely extended big bang. However, Friedmann's solutions to Einstein's equation do not by themselves show that our universe began in a big bang singularity. There exists a certain discrepancy between his solutions and the global features of our universe, a discrepancy that might seem to render inapplicable their prediction of a big bang singularity.

  1. Describe the Christian cosmology and the Muslim cosmology.

    Evolution is a theory that contradicts Islamic beliefs and Muslims generally do not accept these ideas. According to science, there was a time that humans did not exist and many animals did. This questions whether the world was made specifically for humans as both Christians and Muslims believe.

  2. Bereshit, the first word in Genesis translates to "in a beginning"

    Van Wolde believes that "the word tselem ('image') is never used for a concrete visual representation but only for the pure image that has no concrete content or form"69. Thus, she explains that tselem is seen to be a general word denoting a relationship, indicating an analogy and making present something that is absent.

  1. Is it possible for religion and science to co - exist?

    The more science discovers about the world, the more we discover about God. However Sigmund Freud disagreed with the statement that science and religion can co exist. In the Future of an illusion Freud argued that religion arises from a fear of a chaotic and un ordered world.

  2. I am going to be looking at how the religion of Hinduism relates to ...

    There are many theories on how the universe was created, for example scientists believed that the universe is much older than what people first imagined, about 8 million years old. However others believed that the universe is even older than that and it has always existed.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work