Sun, 8 Oct 1995 01:03:00 PDT

Howell writes:

"Read did not say that religion and science were the SAME in terms of how
verification is carried out, only that verification, "testability" and
other "scientific concepts" are also employed in religion in analogous
ways. "

Howell must have meant to refer to Jrotholz, as it was the latter who linked
"verification in science" with "verification in religion."

In Christian theology, at least, "verification" of religious belief is by
reference, in part, to "miracles." ANY "belief" system must have some kind
of verification. But "verification" in religious systems is based upon
assuming certain texts, oral tradition or what have you is outside of that
verification process and in this sense it is not "public;" i.e., it is
verification that will be accepted as verification only by those who already
accept the defining dogma of the religion.

The ojection can be raised that "scientific verification" requires acceptance
of "dogma" as well; e.g., that the external is knowable by human reasons,
that the phenomenon of concern are explicable by means of structuring
processes ("laws") whose content and reference are contained with the
material, universe, and so on. However, where science differs in its "dogma"
is that these "dogma" are themselves subjectable to fasification, or are used
to restrict the domain of inquiry to those phenomena which are accepted as
following within the purview of scientifica investigation. For example,
origins are outside of the purview of scientific theory; the universe as we
know it may have begun with the Big Bang, but how is that the Big Bang itself
came into existence?

Religion is only concerned with "verification of dogma," and by its
definition rejects "falsification of dogma" hence places itself outside of
"public scrutiny" in the sense I used the term.

D. Read