Talk:Natural science

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Irony

Isn't it it sort of ironic to reference a creationist on the 'science' page?

For extra kicks: How often Apologie Educational Ministries are used as reference ;) I only made that search after a few blogs pointed it out. --Sid 3050 19:01, 11 March 2007 (EDT)

Peer review

Conservatives referencing science! This is like a construction company trying to build a modern building with a primitive hammer and wooden rivets, consulting from architectural plans interpreted through Aramaic, Greek, Latin and then English of whose origins you do not know and whose different pages contradict themselves. Personally I would much rather trust information that was obtained using only the soundest of scientific methods that was many times over peer reviewed and tested many times over accounting for as many variables as possible. Don't trust this method? You already do when you fly in a plane or drive your car (thermodynamics, aerodynamics, chemistry, metallurgy, physics, etc.) For peer reviewed information go back to school or consult wikepedia. For amusement, browse your heart away here!

Peer review is no guarantee of correctness. It just means an article is good enough to be checked by other scientists. If an article fails peer review, it is either because (1) the research was so poorly conducted or described that there's no point in other scientists bothering with it, or (2) it represents such a challenge to established scientific belief that the journal chooses to suppress it. --Ed Poor 08:27, 2 May 2007 (EDT)
Woah!!! PoV. How about "(2) Results are not supported by results from other researchers and cannot be explained according to our current understanding. Therefore, there is a good chance that the results are erroneous". If the data are good enough, they will be published. There is no incentive on a journal to suppress research just because it doesn't fit the paradigm. The only incentive is for the journal to not publish high-profile research which is later proved to be wrong, which is embarrassing for the journal. Aloysius 09:51, 2 May 2007 (EDT)
There is evidence that journals do decline publishing ideas that go against the currently-popular paradigm. Philip J. Rayment

I don't deny it. But Ed seems to be assigning some sinister motive on the part of the journals - suppressing new results - which isn't necessarily true. There is a reason why the currently-popular paradigm is currently popular - it's because that explanation is the one that, in the opinion of the majority of researchers in that field, best fits the available data. Any findings which run counter to the paradigm need to have exceptionally good evidence to support them. A journal won't want to run a "The current paradigm is completely wrong" paper if there's any chance that it will turn out that the paper is wrong, because that reflects badly on the journal's editor. In summary, the peer review system isn't perfect, but Ed's wording there presents a highly biased point of view (which is, of course, contrary to conservapedia rules). Aloysius 11:28, 2 May 2007 (EDT)

I'm not assigning sinister motives, but I do recall multiple instances of scientists whose papers were rejected - for reasons other than shoddy research or poor writing. Science and Nature do it all the time. And journal editors have been forced to resign for daring to publish well-written, carefully researched studies.
This is nothing new. The history of science is littered with it. I'm reading Farley Mowat's 1963 book Never Cry Wolf, in which he exposes prejudice in the scientific establishment in Canada. People lose their jobs when they upset the applecart, especially when they use the leverage of facts (see Whistleblower). --Ed Poor 11:37, 2 May 2007 (EDT)

There seems to be a common fallacy that scientists are all about maintaining the status quo. But new discoveries are the driving force in science. New discoveries are what win Nobel prizes, and get big research grants, and get papers in prestigious journals. The peer review/paradigm system introduces a certain amount of inertia into the system which can be counterproductive (occasionally good research can be rejected initially) but in most instances helps to winnow out anomalous or wrong results. Aloysius 11:45, 2 May 2007 (EDT)

"Operational" v "Historical" science.

My edit in this regard was reverted [1]. The only people who make this distinction are creationists. Philosophers of science don't. You won't find this distinction discussed anywhere other than on creationist websites, and it doesn't show up in Popper, Kunn, Lakatos, Quine or anyone other philsopher of note in the area. JoshuaZ 10:55, 7 May 2007 (EDT)


To be taken seriously

Just as at Wikipedia, we here at Conservapedia require statements about what "most scientists think" to be backed up by reliable sources.

So Joshua's opinion [2] is irrelevant.

If Joshua is giving his opinion, because he thinks it is true and relevant, that can be tolerated, but only if (1) it helps explain the topic to the reader and (2) can be shown to be true by verifiable references.

I do hope that our visitors from Wikipedia will not lower their editorial standards when they come over here. We are now new and terribly understaffed. We have possibly ten good writers, while Wikipedia has thousands. If there are any good writers who are knowledgeable about science, they can help us if that's what they want to do. --Ed Poor 10:56, 7 May 2007 (EDT)

Ed, in that case the entire section should be removed since the source is by no means reliable. Again, if you think anyone does this, I challenge you to find this distinction in any work by any serious philosopher of science. You won't find it. JoshuaZ 10:59, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
What source is unreliable? That sounds like what Wikipedian POV-pushers say, when they want to censor ideas they personally dislike.
We don't do that here, because scientific censorship is untrustworthy. --Ed Poor 11:03, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
Hey Ed, did you happen to look at the cite for that statement that Joshua changed? It has nothing to do with the differentiation of types of sciences. I believe Philip may have placed the wrong link in for his cite of the two different types. I am actually interested in this since I have never heard a distinction between what is considered "Operational science" and "Origins science" Have to say it is news to me but then again I have been in the sciences for 20+ years and could have missed it.--TimS 11:05, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
2 to 1, ED is winning. --Will N. 11:06, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
Ed You assert that calling a source unreliable is " sounds like what Wikipedian POV-pushers say, when they want to censor ideas they personally dislike". Why then is the Talk Origins Archive is so frowned upon on a source here? Note that even creationwiki by the way agrees that the distinction between operational and historical science is one used by creationists: [http://creationwiki.org/Science | this entry says "Creationists, unlike many anticreationists, differentiate between operational science with origins science" At minimum, to take Sarfati's claim uncritically is uncalled for. In fact, if Conservapedia accepted all claims as uncritically this wiki would quickly become a free for all. Suggested rewording "according to Young Earth Creationist Jonathan Sarfati there are two types of sciece: operational science and historical science" And I again invite you to look for any serious philsci that makes this distinction. Its even more unworkable than strict Popperism. JoshuaZ 11:10, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
TimS, can you clarify what you mean about the citation?
I deliberately did not write that section to say that "science is subdivided into two types, but that it can be. Does anyone dispute that it can be? I would consider it self-evident that there is a distinction between the two, which means that it can be subdivided according to that distinction. The fact that most evolutionists refuse to recognise a distinction that clearly exists only shows them in a bad light.
In fact, tonight I watched the DVD of a debate between a creationists and an evolutionist, and the evolutionist, whilst not using those terms, did acknowledge that with evolution one can't reproduce the results like one can with other fields of science, thus tacitly admitting that such a distinction exists.
Philip J. Rayment 11:20, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
Philip, the citation does not illustrate the difference between the two types of sciences it asserts. It lists evolution as an origin science but disregards the fact that TOE has allowed for expansion to germ theory and also to virology. So that would place it in the operational sciences category. If you followed the literal interpretation of what was stated on the page all sciences would be considered operational, they contribute to modern society. --TimS 11:34, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
I am sorry about the "Can be" and "Is" point. You are correct and I respect that you did not wish to assert something as fact without the evidence.--TimS 11:34, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
Ed we already have good writers who are knowledgeable about science, Conservative and Philip_J._Rayment. If anyone needs help with science articles I suggest people get in touch with them. Auld Nick 11:37, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
Auld, I will admit that Philip takes the time out to learn about the science before writing , however I would disagree about conservative. He tends to quote and misunderstand the what he is writing against.--TimS 11:40, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
TimS, I assume that you are talking about reference 4. Surely the text under "Confusing ‘origins science’ with ‘operational science’; the real origins of science" of that link does cover what we are talking about?
If it is true that germ theory and virology have grown out of evolution (which I would dispute), all that means is that those fields are 'operational science', not that evolution is. But I could show you quotes from evolutionists admitting that evolution has not contributed much to "real" science.
Philip J. Rayment 11:55, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
I do refer to reference 4. It has many generalizations but no substantial evidence to support its claims nor does it give reference to the position outside of creationistic POV. Therefore it is another matter of POV vs empirical evidence.
Please withhold the quotes, there have been many scientists that have been misquoted or have their quotes taken out of context of what they were saying, quote mining is not a substitution for empirical evidence. I know not a molecular biologist that would say otherwise in regards to evolution's contribution to the understanding of Germ theory or Virology. In fact, many medications for the treatment of HIV are based on the evidence of HIV evolving resistance to the medications, due to the mechanisms discussed in TOE. Many antibiotics are also developed with this understanding of how bacteria evolve, once again through the mechanisms describe in the TOE, and are more effective at treating a patient. So the science behind the TOE is something applicable to the modern world and therefore would fall under the definition of operational sciences discussed in the article. However, consider that the distinction is only applied by those of the creationist POV and shown to only be useful in a broad meaning of sciences.--TimS 12:14, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
I think reference 4 has adequate information. We are talking here about how to categorise different types of science; that's not something that you can provide empirical evidence on. It's more a matter of looking at the argument and seeing if it makes sense.
I've seen creationists accused of misquoting or taking quotes out of context far more than I've seen scientists misquoted or taken out of context. In other words, it doesn't happen anywhere near as often as claimed.
Surely germ theory started with Pasteur, who was an anti-evolutionist, which was my basis for disputing that germ theory has grown out of evolution.
Your comment about HIV begs the question of what evolution really is. I would dispute that the gaining resistance to medication is evolution, as it involves no new genetic information.
Philip J. Rayment 03:02, 9 May 2007 (EDT)
Good morning Philip. The categorization is one sided, that is the issue. Only those involved with creation sciences (meaning a select few Christian scientists) use the terminology. It is not accepted within the scientific community as a whole.
Germ Theory was promoted by Pasteur but not started by him. Consider that the time that Pasteur was working on testing his hypothesis that the Origin of the species was out by ~10 years. Further developments within germ theory were developed from evolution based mechanisms. Pasteur's major contribution was showing that spontaneous generation as it related to fully developed higher organisms was untrue.
Actually resistance to medication by Viruses has been shown in vetro to occur by mutations within the genome of the virus. HIV being a retrovirus replicates and mutates its genome far faster than bacteria and other viruses so you have many generations in a very short period of time, an hour or less. Because of this you can see the stages of mutation towards the medication and how the virus is able to adapt to the environmental stresses. Those that do not develop the mutations that allow for some adaptability to the medication's ability to block the virus from attaching to the cell do not replicate. This is why the HIV meds that are most successful today are targeting the reverstranscriptase of the virus to reduce its ability to mutate. HIV is a pretty simple virus as such it does not have many of the genetic correction mechanisms you find in other organisms, not to mention that RNA is more unstable than DNA and is prone to mistranscription. This is why there are so many different strains of HIV in the world, basically for each infection the virus mutates in that organism and acquirers different resistances to be passed on to a newly infected individual. This is one of the ways we can trace an infection back an originator within so many degrees.
Evolution does not always involve new information as much as it involves a change in information. If you are using the new information frame of mind when dealing with evolution then you would have to say that a human's genome should be one of the largest in the animal kingdom (more evolved). This is shown to be untrue as there are insects with larger genomes. Think of the lottery when dealing with gene expression. The loci can change on chromosomes and allow for different reading frames for transcription. A slight mutation can totally change the entire transcription as well, sickle cells are caused by a single codon change during translation that changes the hemoglobin protein. If the mutation is carried to successive generations it is considered evolution. (Please remember that evolution makes no claims that it is positive or negative just that the accumulation of mutation can cause differences in organisms which can lead to speciation.)--TimS 08:50, 9 May 2007 (EDT)
Good evening TimS. That non-creationists conflate the two different types of science doesn't invalidate the clear distinction that exists.
I find it hard to accept that a new field of study developed from a theory only ten years old; it would have taken longer than that just to have enough acceptance. Can you give me more details, such as who started the field of study?
Most of the rest of your post is based on your last point, that evolution does not always involve new information. This is the critical issue. It is true that evolution as currently defined by evolutionists does include changes that don't increase information. It is just as true that evolution includes (and this is the popular sense) the descent of all living things from a common ancestor, and that this is only possible by the addition of enormous amounts of new genetic information. Furthermore, it is true that it is this aspect that creationists disagree with; they have no problem with mutations, speciation, nor changes in gene frequency. It is the increase in genetic information that is needed for one kind of creature to evolve into another kind, and this is not what is observed in the examples that you provided.
Philip J. Rayment 09:26, 9 May 2007 (EDT)
Philip, there is not a clear distinction since sciences work off each other. Molecular biology for example has roots from chemistry, organic chemistry, physics, biology, biochemistry, and genetics. One major area of molecular biology is evolution, at a molecular level. So would this be considered an origins science or an operation science since it is used for pharmaceutical development? This is one of the many reasons why the scientific community does not try the classification, it is not a clear classification therefore not useful to categorize a discipline.
Molecular biology really did not become a scientific discipline till the early 60’s upon the understanding of DNA’s role in genomic material in the 1950’s. So yes science fields have been shown to pop up under short periods of time, however roots for these fields are normally founded to occur much earlier. Girolamo Fracastoro, Agostino Bassi, Friedrich Henle and others had suggested germ theory.
Philip just to show you a little bit about genomic sequences, DNA is composed of 4 nucleotides. RNA is composed of 4 nucleotides. Between the two nucleic acids types we have a total of 5 nucleotides. RNA has a reading frame of 3 nucleotides per codon, encoding 20 amino acids, most proteins consist of thousands of amino acids. When you look at the number of amino acids that can be produced in relation to the number of nucleic acids coding for them you can see the versatility in the genome to produce large variance with the same genomic material. Not to mention the fact of chaperone proteins folding the translated polypeptide chain into different shapes allowing for different active sites on the same protein sequence, causes variance as well. Now with all of that out of the way I can explain the remainder of your statement. Your statement and emphasis of evolution as currently defined by evolutionists is misleading, this is the definition as defined and accepted by biological scientists world wide. Evolution is an accumulation of changes of genomic material that leads to phenotypical changes in an organism. Changes of genomic material do not necessarily mean additional genomic material. But to provide you with an example that organisms can receive additional genomic material through evolution lets look at one molecular mechanism that is responsible for the correction of DNA, nucleotide-excision repair. This is how it works, a segment of the damaged DNA strand is excised, and the gap is filled by DNA polymerase and ligase using the complementary DNA strand as a template. Sometimes this does not work correctly due to the biochemical properties of the environment, causing mistakes. If this mistake occurs during meiosis then there is a possibility of a duplication of material into the genome of that cell and is passed on to further generations from that cell. The reason for this is that nucleotide-excision repair is an ever constant mechanism, meaning it is occurring at all times. So if DNA synthesis is occurring during the S phase of meiosis, nucleotide-excision repair can cause a repeat in the reading frame of the DNA and add more sequence to the genome. This would inevitably cause an addition to the genetic material.
My last paragraph should explain why it is not necessary for enormous amounts of new genetic material to cause phenotypical changes in an organism’s offspring. Just compare the size of genomes between bacteria and insects, you will find several examples of bacterial genomes being larger than insects, as well as between insects and mammals. This is a straw man argument.
You can do the math in regard to the possible combinations of amino acids that can be coded from DNA and RNA and see a very large number of diverse proteins that can come from it but keep in mind that that is just the first level of protein development, most proteins go through several morphological changes before they become active, this is done with the addition of chaperon proteins, signaling proteins and other processes within the cell. The variance is more than enough to render the argument that an addition of genomic material is needed to express phenotypical changes and therefore speciation.
As for creationists having no problem with mutations, speciation, or changes in gene frequency, what can I say other than those are the base mechanisms for evolution. Mutations cause changes in gene frequency which over time cause speciation which is an evolved (meaning changed, not improved) form of the previous species. To be honest I do not see what the argument is about if Creationists have no problem with mutation, speciation or gene frequency variation.
--TimS 11:09, 9 May 2007 (EDT)
I agree that some fields overlap; geology, for example, has an operational component (studying the rocks as they are) and an origins component (trying to explain how they came to be the way that they are).
You were trying to tell me that Germ Theory had its origins in evolution, but now you quote me Girolamo Fracastoro (1478‑1553) and Agostino Bassi (1773-1856) as being involved with the roots of the field, yet they predated Darwin's evolution! That doesn't support your point; it undermines it!
It is incorrect to say that the "scientific community" don't make the distinction. I linked to a book by a member of the scientific community. Okay, most of them don't make the distinction, but how many of them deny it? And as I've said, there clearly is a distinction.
Your description of "changes of genomic material" completely glosses over what direction the change is in. Does it increase genetic information, or decrease it? Simply adding "genetic material" is not the same as adding genetic information. The former is like adding random letters to a how-to manual, and the latter is like adding new instructions. The former is meaningless, but the latter conveys meaning. The hypothetical first single cell didn't have the genetic information for hair, eyes, skin, blood, feathers, etc. etc. To go from that first cell to birds, mammals, etc., evolution has to add information—instructions for building those organs. Just adding sequences of A, G, T, and G, doesn't cut it; the genes need to have specific instructions to assemble specific amino acids to make specific proteins to build those organs. Natural selection doesn't provide that information—it removes the less fit, it doesn't create new information. Mutations destroy information, they don't add it. Changes in gene frequency are not additions of new information.
Mutations, natural selection (leading to changes in gene frequency) and speciation are proposed mechanisms of evolution, but they are insufficient mechanisms because they don't add information. Natural selection and mutations are also part of the creation model (natural selection was explained by a creationist prior to Darwin), but mutations are a downhill (information-losing) process, and natural selection is a mechanism that weeds out the less fit, but does not create the more fit. Speciation is a result of those and similar mechanism, but doesn't add new organs, functions, and abilities; it is the result of removal of genetic information.
Philip J. Rayment 12:13, 9 May 2007 (EDT)

I don't see what molecular biology has to do with evolution. In science, assertions and assumptions don't count. We need facts, and once we have them we can find out whether they confirm or contradict our theories. --Ed Poor 11:16, 9 May 2007 (EDT)

Ed, molecular biology studies the base mechanisms for phenotypical change. If you look at evolution with a reductionism mindset (which science does) you have to seek out the causes. Molecular biologists do just that with our field of study. When we discover mechanisms that allow for change in the genome that contributes to evolutionary theory. When we find conserved sequences in differencing species that contributes to evolutionary theory. That is what molecular biology has to do with evolution.
I am a bit unclear what you meant with "In science, assertions and assumptions don't count." were you addressing my explanation of variance in genomic material? If so the processes I listed above have been observed and documented, you will find them easily in any molecular text or lab manual for biotechnologists, we have to keep them in mind while working or our research can get messy Lol.--TimS 11:34, 9 May 2007 (EDT)

Try using words in my vocabulary. Even my spell checker has never heard of "phenotypical". Do you mean a change in phenotypes? If so, what is a phenotype? And how much of molecular biology is concerned with that?

More to the point, what does molecular biology has to do with evolution? --Ed Poor 10:21, 19 May 2007 (EDT)

Ed, Molecular Biology has everything to do with evolution. Mutation is one of the core areas of Molecular study. As such mutation is the major driving force behind evolution. A phenotype is the expressed traits of a genome. I know that it was defined elsewhere. As such Molecular biology is concerned about phenotypes because it give the researcher an understanding of what proteins they are dealing with as well as what traits are expressed by the organism. Genetics is more involved with phenotypes than molecular biology but none the less it is still an important part of the science. Where as a geneticist studies the phenotype and the molecular geneticist studies the Genotype, a molecular biologist studies both. The molecular biologist is mostly concerned with the expression and signaling of molecular compounds in the cell and organism which is inclusive of studies of the phenotype (expressed traits) and genotype (base genetic code of the organism). These sciences with biochemistry work hand in hand and often compliment each other. I hope this clears things up a bit.--TimS 12:13, 13 June 2007 (EDT)

Should I complement you on your prompt responses here?  :-)   Philip J. Rayment 12:18, 13 June 2007 (EDT)

Status of biology

Is biology purely a physical science? This presumes that life is purely a physical phenomenon. --Ed Poor 10:16, 19 May 2007 (EDT)

If you don't think so, then you chose the wrong name when you renamed this article. It was about all sciences except perhaps ones like you mentioned when you changed it, psychology and economics. I'm not sure that the latter are strictly considered sciences anyway, and would be happy for this article to revert to its previous name. Philip J. Rayment 11:56, 19 May 2007 (EDT)

Biology would be considered a Physical Science but certain branches of Biology would not, such as behavioral biology, although there have been some research pointing to certain genetics inducing behavioral traits (in which case it would be). Substance dependence is one I am looking at now, not the chemical interaction that causes physical dependency but the psychological dependency of non-addictive substances, such as ETOH and certain sugars. I guess to make things a little easier to understand, physical sciences need to have a physical substrate to study. That area of life that you had implied, being not physical, is beyond physical sciences and that area is left to theology.--TimS 12:02, 13 June 2007 (EDT)

Biology is not considered a physical science. The physical sciences are widely referred to as those sciences which deal with non-living systems. Biology obviously does not fit this definition. Biology is a "life science." Stryker 11:05, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
Right, that's clearer now. I think we should just settle this and agree that this is a semantic argument. I was going to revert my edit but Stryker beat me to it. ATang 11:08, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
Atang, in my opinion, the article doesn't really say anything about "physical science." If you want, we could work together to re-write it. Stryker 11:22, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
Well, right now I don't like how it's simply broken down into operational science and origins science. The only thing I can think of is maybe giving a brief introduction into each of the stated sciences (astronomy, physics, chemistry), and including the links to the appropriate places. Other than that I couldn't think of too much to add - it's such a broad field I don't know how much detail we should add. ATang 11:28, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
The reason it deserves a re-write is that it has a ton of extraneous information (I'm just looking at the first few paragraphs; it'd be dangerous to change anything below that). If you follow a logical organization, then "physical sciences" are an implementation or subset of "science" (to use computer science terms). It should inherit any characteristic of science, so it is redundant to point out that physical sciences use the "scientific method." Really, the page should exist as nothing more than a note that physical sciences are those subsets of science that deal with non-living systems; any other information without extrapolating on that idea specifically is irrelevant. I guess i'll just add it to my list of stuff to fix, even though I only ever get 30 non-consecutive minutes or so per day to fix them. Stryker 11:37, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
I'll take a stab at it if I have time; it's just that I've never edited anything this major before (and by major I mean this is a huge umbrella with potential for high traffic. I've only done dead-end articles - or "leaf" articles, in computer terminology =P). The section on scientific method could go then. ATang 12:00, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
The article was simply "science", but Ed Poor changed it, as the content didn't cover things like social science. I would have been happy for it to stay as 'science', but otherwise, I've been thinking that a better name would be 'natural science'. It would then cover biology as well. It could certainly do with being expanded, but the operational/origins science part is important and definitely should stay. Philip J. Rayment 12:03, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
Natural science would be a great title for the article that would fix many issues; could you make this change, Philip? Stryker 12:08, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
Not yet. Anybody disagree? Philip J. Rayment 12:31, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
I say do it. ATang 13:09, 26 July 2007 (EDT)
Another vote for, none against; done. Philip J. Rayment 23:09, 26 July 2007 (EDT)

China

It is ludicrous to suggest the science only came into its own because of a christian worldview. The early chinese were extremely advanced in the science of astronomy, chemistry and physics to name but a few long before christianity was introduced to their country. And, frankly speaking, this quote "In my view, “objectivity” does not exist in science. Even in the act of gathering data, decisions about what data to record and what to ignore reflect the framework of the scientist" is absurd. Not only is it opinion but even christian scientists will ignore or record data which fits their POV. This article needs MAJOR work however I fear my edits will be deleted so I'll keep my fingers away from it. MetcalfeM

On your first point, the following comes from a review of Stark's book (see the bibliography in this article). The reference to China is clearly not a direct quote, but presumably a summation of Stark's comments on the matter:
What is science? It is a combination of observation and theory that leads to testable predictions and prohibitions about the results of further observations. A great deal of knowledge was gathered by observation and by trial and error in all ancient cultures, but this is not science. Aristotle, for example, observed widely and theorized extensively, but he did not test his theories against his observations so he was not a scientist. Alchemy and astrology were highly developed in China, Islamic regions, India and ancient Greece and Rome, but only in medieval Europe did these become the sciences of chemistry and astronomy. ‘It is the consensus among contemporary historians, philosophers and sociologists of science that real science arose only once: in Europe.’ The leading scientific figures in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries were overwhelmingly devout Christians who believed it their duty to comprehend God’s handiwork (pp. 123, 126–127)[3]
On your second point, the article does not say that Christian scientists are perfect either, and you seem to be contradicting yourself. You say that it is "absurd ... opinion", then indicate that Christian scientists will also do this. The clear implication is that Christian scientists will do what non-Christian scientists are also doing. So you seem to agree that it does happen.
Philip J. Rayment 19:00, 17 January 2008 (EST)

Indeed my friend, christian scientists will ignore large amounts of data in order to fit their world view. What conservapedia does in this article is claim that non-christian scientists ignore creation based evidence (or at least distort this data) in order to prove Old earth and the like. Its not a matter of ignoring, it the fact the creation science was largely discredited and almost forgotten until the fundamentalist christain movement ressurected it again relativly recently. If I may expand on what I meant above - christian science will routinly bedunk any science that openly contradicts their own beliefs. Scientists are not part of an athestic movement with the sole purpose of discrediting creation and the like. Just because their research doesnt match a chritian POV doesnt mean the data has been deliberatly distorted that way. And secondly, you say China's advances only became what we know as chemistry in Medival Europe is semantics. Chemistry is only word. The Chinas were excellent astromers and chemists no matter what word you use and Chinese rulers frequently had people on their staff to research and report to them on their findings. Which is science. MetcalfeM

You've offered no evidence that creationary scientists will ignore data any more than evolutionary scientists.
Where in this article does it state that "non-christian scientists ignore creation based evidence (or at least distort this data) in order to prove Old earth and the like"? They do, but I couldn't quickly see where this article says this.
"...creation science was largely discredited ...": No, it was dismissed, not discredited.
"...christian science will routinly bedunk any science that openly contradicts their own beliefs.": You mean creation science, but what's wrong with that?
"Scientists are not part of an athestic movement with the sole purpose of discrediting creation and the like.": Nobody claimed that. You wouldn't be trying to refute a straw-man argument, would you?
"Just because their research doesnt match a chritian POV doesnt mean the data has been deliberatly distorted that way.": Again, that's not what is claimed.
"And secondly, you say China's advances ...": No, that wasn't me saying that. That was someone else reviewing a book by Rodney Stark, an agnostic I believe.
Philip J. Rayment 00:07, 18 January 2008 (EST)

Christianity or Protestantism?

WKirkwood changed the article to attribute the origins of science to Protestantism rather than Christianity, claiming that the individual freedom that Protestantism brought enabled science. Although I accept that at time Catholicism has not encouraged individual freedoms, I don't believe that his claim regarding science is correct, and it is not supported by the sources used in the article, which attribute science to Christianity, not Protestantism.

Galileo, for example, was Catholic, and was supported, if my memory is correct, by the Jesuits. And then there's this:

Science historian John Heilbron provides further evidence in his book The Sun in the Church. In this book, favourably reviewed by the secular science journals New Scientist and Science, he shows that far from opposing astronomical research, the church supported astronomers and even allowed the cathedrals themselves to be used as solar observatories—hence the subtitle of Heilbron’s book, Cathedrals as Solar Observatories. These observatories, called meridiane, were ‘reverse sundials’, or gigantic pinhole cameras where the sun’s image was projected from a hole in a window in the cathedral’s lantern onto a meridian line. Analyzing the sun’s motion further weakened the Ptolemaic model, yet the Church supported this research. And Arthur Koestler documented that only 50 years after Galileo, astronomers of the Jesuit Order, ‘the intellectual spearhead of the Catholic Church’, taught geokinetic astronomy in China.[4]

Philip J. Rayment 01:27, 18 January 2008 (EST)

Christians and Science

Again I must protest at this ridiculous article. Christianity has arguably done more to hamper science than to expand it and because of this to say that modern science owes a lot to christainity is ridiculous. From Galileo (forced to recant) to other sceintist at the time trying to prove earth wasnt the centre of the universe. From the destruction of the Great Library at Alexandra to the stem cell issue. In fact, one could argue that science would far and away be more developed now if it was not for christianity. MetcalfeM

You might argue that Christianity has done more to hamper than expand science, but you'd be wrong. Galileo was supported by many in the church, and his opposition comprised scientists in the church who held to the non-biblical geocentric views inherited from Aristotle. The motivation for many of his critics was not his science, but that he rubbed people the wrong way. See here for a detailed treatment.
The "other sceintist[s] at the time trying to prove earth wasnt the centre of the universe", Copernicus, Kepler, and Newton, along with Galileo, were all young-Earth creationists!
The destroyers of the Library at Alexandria are unknown. There is no good evidence that Christians were involved.
Christians are not opposed to scientific research on stem cells. They are opposed to using embryonic stem cells, but the science can continue on other stem cells. These other, "adult", stem cells have, by the way, proven to be very useful, whilst the embryonic ones have not proved useful and have their own problems.
One could argue whatever one likes, but the evidence favours the view that science would not exist if it were not for Christianity.
Philip J. Rayment 22:29, 21 January 2008 (EST)

Firstly, The fact that Copernicous etc were YEC is irrelevant as that was all that was known at the time. Much as Copernicous showed the Earth was not at the centre of the universe, later sceintist discovered the earth was much older than thought. Secondly, Carl Sagans book, Cosmos, which I am unable to quote verbatim, has a section on the great library and a very well researched history of the Libraries destruction. And lastly, mankinds curiosity about the world around him will cause him to research and study regardless of religion. Its how we learn. China and the Greeks are a fine example of science WITHOUT chirstian influence. MetcalfeM

Yes, there are fine examples of non-Christian science. That should be added. RSchlafly 20:27, 22 January 2008 (EST)
The fact that Copernicus etc. were YEC is relevant when you are trying to make a claim that Christianity is bad for science. It proves you wrong.
Later scientists did not discover the Earth to be older than thought; they invented a new way of explaining the evidence of the layers without invoking a biblical explanation. It was a new ideological view of the evidence, not a discovery.
As far as the Library and Sagan are concerned, try reading this. If you want another view, Wikipedia's article on the library also says that the perpetrators cannot be known for sure.
"And lastly", your opinion is at odds with the quoted authorities, so I'll take them over you. And if you are correct about man's curiosity being all that's required, why didn't the Australian aborigines, the American Indians, etc. etc. develop science? Perhaps there's more to it than just curiosity? The reason, in some cases, is because people thought that the creation itself was sacred and should be worshipped, not studied. This was because of their religious view. And by the way, Chinese astronomy was given a boost by Jesuits passing on their astronomical data, including Copernicus' ideas.
Philip J. Rayment 21:17, 22 January 2008 (EST)
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