I’m by no means a chemist or a biologist (I like to blame my education for that), but I can’t not feel skeptical about the synthetic leaf that set the internet on fire a few days back.
There’s a reason that arguments about religion often turn into completely meaningless battles of empty words. Such arguments in general are based on standard logic and follow the scientific method of drawing conclusions based on a set of axioms and trying to find inconsistencies.
The big problem of a scientist trying to argue with a strictly religious Christian, for example, on an equal footing is that their sets of axioms are different. Sure, they are same for the most of it – one could maybe even say that the scientific axioms are a subset of the Christian ones. That is because the first and foremost axiom of a strict Christian is the absoluteness of God.
I don’t think that following a religion is a bad thing, that it should be reprimanded, nor do I claim that there are no higher spiritual beings. Religion is a very important pillar of culture and civilization, a fundamental part of mankind’s history. It provides an explanation for things there used to be no clear explanation for before, and while I don’t think that this function of it is as relevant in this age and day when science is capable of explaining phenomenon without involving divine beings (and please note that William of Ockham, the man who’s famous for stating that all theories should be kept as simple as possible, was a Christian monk), I also think that religion can and does provide moral guidelines and a spiritual respite, something that science can not and is not supposed to do.
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