• 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. Explain the Ontological argument.

    The schizophrenic Miss Miller for example had a dream in which her desire for God was compared to a moth's desire for light. Jung noticed how this parallel was found in countless religious traditions, for example the Aztec pre-occupation with the sun and the Christian idea of God being the 'light of the world.'

  2. T H E D E S I G N A R ...

    The machine starts and to the relief of the victim he sees ten Aces of hearts. The victim thinks that this extraordinary fact needs an explanation in terms of the machine having been rigged in some way. The kidnapper now reappears and casts doubt on the suggestion.

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

    the way that humanity uses the environment for their own gain, regardless of whether the condition of the environment and its other inhabitants is subsequently damaged. On the other hand, one could use this theory to condemn environmental degradation caused by human activity, as when we change the environment, we

  2. Why are tensions between science and religion so persistent? Why do rivalries between science ...

    The Catholic Church supported a largely Aristotelian physical world view, which was articulated into Christian theology by St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274). In it, Man had a privileged position as lord of a fixed, motionless and spherical Earth at the center of the Universe.

  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. How does Galileo view the issue of religion and science? How does he resolve ...

    He says, "that our authors knew the truth but the Holy Spirit did not desire that men should learn things that are useful to no one for salvation"(Galileo 8). The Bible's main focus and purpose is to share the good news of Jesus Christ, and be used as a guide to live a righteous life.

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

    or hyperbolic (curved like a saddle) it is infinite in extent, which implies that the past-directed spacetime paths end in a spatially one dimensional singularity. Only a finite volume of space can be compressed into a point; consequently, if there are an infinite number of spatial volumes of any given

  2. The Big Bang theory

    After about an hour, the temperature had dropped below a billion degrees, and protons and neutrons combined and formed hydrogen, deuterium, helium. In a billion years, this cloud of energy, atoms, and neutrinos had cooled enough for galaxies to form.

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