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Dec 22 2009

Atheist Meme of the Day: Science Is Not A Belief System

Scarlet letter Today’s Atheist Meme of the Day, from my Facebook page. Pass this on; or don’t; or edit it as you see fit; or make up your own. Enjoy!

Science is not a belief system. For atheists or anyone else. Science is the exact opposite of a belief system: all scientific hypotheses are provisional, and a scientific hypothesis is only as good as the last experiment confirming it. Pass it on: if we say it enough times to enough people, it may get across.

4 comments

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  1. 1
    Bruce Gorton

    Science is a belief system though – it is a system whereby we sort the beliefs we have into the bins we label: “Reliable, unreliable and outright BS.”
    I would rather phrase it as “Science does not represent beliefs. Science represents a means of measuring our beliefs about the real world, against the real world.”

  2. 2
    Tom Vincent

    Outstanding…though I think there have been many cases where scientists nearly equal priests in deceit and chicanery: When they’re marketing their ‘results’ to investors. Cold fusion, anyone? :)

  3. 3
    Steve Law

    It’s not a belief system.
    No christian ever said ‘I believe that there is a 90% probability that Jesus died for my sins, given the current weight of evidence, but further work is needed…’
    The problem is that the word ‘belief’ has several meanings: you can ‘believe’ in your friend (i.e. trust them), you can ‘believe’ that something is a fact (i.e. think there is strong evidence) or you can believe in something, despite lack of evidence (i.e. have faith) The religious confound these meanings all the time. I prefer to avoid the word altogether.

  4. 4
    llewelly

    Science is a system for falsifying beliefs. It can’t ever prove a belief – but it can develop and perform experiments or observations which can falsify a belief. It is the opposite of a belief system.

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