What role does science play in atheism?

Atheists blindly trust science and believe not only that it can not do any wrong, but that it has all the answers to life’s problems and questions regarding the purpose for the existence of humanity.

Posted: June 5th 2007

George Locke

The assertion of 'blind trust’ is kind of silly. Science is based on testability and predictive accuracy; an atheist’s 'trust’ in science is based on reproducible evidence, not on 'blind trust’ or 'blind faith’.

As for the rest of the question, I don’t know of any atheist that believes there is any infallible source that can answer questions about the nature and purpose of human existence. The questioner’s assertion that atheists believe science to be such an infallible source is simply false.

As to the more general question, 'how does atheism relate to science’, I think you could say that someone who judges a proposition in scientific fashion will conclude that religious claims cannot be satisfactorily demonstrated. So science provides one foundation an atheist can feel confident in, which supports his/her belief that there is no god.

Claims of the supernatural are always either disproven or not testable, hence from a scientific point of view, the supernatural is a bad hypothesis.

Historically, religion was once the main tool humans had to describe the world around them. Why are ravens black? Because Athena got mad. Why are there wars? Because the gods are capricious. Nowadays, there are other explanations based in observation and experiment for these phenomena. Science can’t do everything religion was designed to do, but psychology can go a ways to showing what kinds of thing make for a happy life and social sciences can go a ways showing how to make a society run smoothly. In part because of science, religion just isn’t necessary for an atheist.

Posted: July 27th 2007

See all questions answered by George Locke


The scientific method of not accepting propositions without evidence informs atheism. In order words, the same thinking that scientists employ when investigating the world, also leads to a much high incidence of atheism. In the USA, only about 10% at best, are atheists, whereas with elite scientists of the National Academy, it is about 90%. So there is strong correlation between scientific thinking and atheism.

Religion used to give people an explanation of the cosmos and our place within it. Science through cosmology, evolution, anthropology, and neurology, has largely supplanted it as an effective means of understanding aspects of the universe. It’s an ongoing process – not all is understood, but more is known now than in 1600 and more will be known in 2400 than 2000.

Posted: June 6th 2007

See all questions answered by RTambree


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