In Today’s Society, can you be Religious and believe in Science as well?

In Today’s Society, can you be Religious and believe in Science as well?
The short answer is, yes and no!  That all depends on who you are talking to and the real question is what do you think? You can’t take someone’s opinion and believe it like it is a fact.  You need to think for yourself, question authorities, formulate and respect your own opinion. Don’t let someone with a microphone and platform to bully you into thinking one way or the other.  I am not an expert on Science, Religion or people.  I just have observed a lot of conflict about this topic and think it needs to be looked at.  When you walk into a dark room, you need to turn on the lights to see what’s inside.  I am not telling you what to believe, but I am asking you to turn on that light and look for yourself.  Ask yourself “Can an individual be Religious and believe in Science as well?”
Some individuals in the public eye will try to convince, debate, and argue their point of view.  I can recall a select few “Science Educators” say that “You can believe in religion and practice science” with their words but the tone of their voice or past statement tell a different story.  These “Science Educators” are not Scientists in the traditional sense of the word because Scientists are usually too busy to educate and are likely to not be the best communicators (i.e. Bill Nye is a Science Educator).   It is not uncommon for some “Science Educators” to use the “Big Spaghetti Monster in the Sky” as a way to point out that not being able to disprove something does not mean it exists, mostly to combat the “you can’t disprove that God exist” statement.  When someone who has any deep religious respect or faith has their higher power put on the same level as a large creature, made of milled wheat with water that defies gravity is taken as an insult which ends the conversation and doesn’t accomplish much.  These individuals will never accept anyone that believes in a hire power other than the scientific method.  If you couldn’t guess, these individuals are in the “No” side of the argument.  I would say “discussion”, but today’s culture of the internet and nontraditional media outlets, a “discussions” rarely happen which is a problem.
The religious “no” side is equally as difficult to have the same “discussion”.  It is difficult to discuss anything other than a strict interpolation of the Torah, Qur’an or the Bible to some people.  They will not accept anything other than word for word following of the doctrines.  Which for many individuals, it is difficult to grasp rules written when the most common mode of travel was one foot in front of the other.   This point of view are very isolating, counterproductive and ends the conversation as well.
If you ask me that question, I will always answer “yes”.  I am evidence that they can, as an Engineer, I use science all the time, but I do go to church and believe in God.  There are many people are just like me, they understand that both science and faith can coexist.  I work right next to a Muslim man who prays 5 times a day, but he practices scientific principles just like I do.  We understand that faith does not dictate Ohm’s law or the fundamental principles of Thermodynamics. Praying does not change the expansion rate of metals but plays a role in how we treat each other.
One thing, us as humans have been able to do is adapt.  This is why these two worlds can survive, coexist, and prosper.  Trying to understand your origins, the world around and what to believe in is a very difficult task but is very important.  Constructing beliefs as a focal point is part of being human and these beliefs are best conveyed in stories. If you think about it, our first belief as children is a story told to us by our parents or care givers.  It tells us our personal origins, about our world around us, and this gives us what we believe is true.  We construct our story that is best suited to the evidence at hand.  As time goes on, our knowledge expands, and our story changes.  Because our stories change, it does not mean that the previous stories need to be destroyed so the new story can thrive.  We incorporate our new story with the old story to understand our world. The idea of destroying an individuals or groups beliefs because you believe they are wrong is extreme and counterproductive.
Religion and science do not have to be at odds. They both service a purpose in our culture.  Science shows us how things work, religion shows us how to treat each other.  Anti-biotics work with the body to fight off infections, but can’t comfort a child with an illness. A mother’s pray can’t cure the child’s illness but can give the child a feeling of safety and love. Both together, help the child through a difficult point in their young life.
Most rational people will think these thoughts are common sense, but common sense is not as commonly found in the world today. This is why we as a community must stop, listen and accept what other members of our society believe, especially if you believe they are wrong.   Trying to shout down the other side will only harden their stance and no common ground will be found.

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