Letter - No Need For Religion

Judging from the opinions recently expressed in these pages on religion vs. science, religious scientists seem to fall into two categories. Some feel that religion and science are such different dimensions of the same thing that they can coexist without conflict. Others see them as coincident perspectives, and therefore mutually interdependent. Either way, these people are persuaded that science and religion are compatible. I suppose it would be nice if, as a scientist, I could have the comfo

Richard Goss
Feb 5, 1989

Judging from the opinions recently expressed in these pages on religion vs. science, religious scientists seem to fall into two categories. Some feel that religion and science are such different dimensions of the same thing that they can coexist without conflict. Others see them as coincident perspectives, and therefore mutually interdependent. Either way, these people are persuaded that science and religion are compatible.

I suppose it would be nice if, as a scientist, I could have the comforts of religion too. But how can I? All of my scientific work is based on the assumption that every effect has a cause. If God worked outside natural laws, how can I be sure my experiments have not been sabotaged by some divine miracle?

When religions claim that miracles occur, they violate causality (not to mention determinism and reductionism). Quantum physicists may deny causal determination, yet even if events at the subatomic...