The last post mentioned some equivalent basic assumptions that underly science and religion as systems of knowledge. All of these assumptions or articles of faith cannot be empirically proven, but rather, their validity is shown over time as they are operationalized – in other words, put into operation and practice. The fruits of science, under these assumptions, have yielded their fruit – advances in communications, abilities in the health field, mass transit, to name a few – and we now have confidence in the premises of science. Thousands of years ago, however, when the scientific enterprise began, these assumptions would have appeared radical and would not have been empirically verifiable.
The fruits of religion are less obvious, and the corruptions more apparent; leaving in many observers a skeptical stance. However, religion’s positive contributions to humanity’s history cannot be overstated. It is the leading force impelling civilizations, moral codes, unification, and many of the world’s moral, intellectual, artistic, and social advancements. It has been the chief source of meaning, order, and guidance throughout human life. Historically, religion’s generating influences have been geographically concentrated, progressively widening in scope in a punctuated manner with the advent of new religions, extending from the tribe to city-state to nation. In time, through the continued operationalization of its underlying assumptions, the fruits of religion will be self-evident in the form and function of a world civilization.
Both science and religion are based on articles of faith, which can only be verified over time and through putting them into practice and application. What fruits of assumptions do you see in daily life?