Badass physicist Sean Carroll has some strong words in slate about whether or not religion and science can ever coexist, as well as for the Templeton Foundation.
I don’t think that science and religion are reconciling or can be reconciled in any meaningful sense, and I believe that it does a great disservice to the world to suggest otherwise. Therefore, way back in the day, I declined an opportunity to speak at a Templeton-sponsored conference.
That’s just lovely.
I…kind of want to marry this man.
And that’s the real reason why I don’t want to be involved directly with Templeton. It’s not a matter of ethical compromise; it’s simply a matter of sending the wrong message. Any time respectable scientists take money from Templeton, they lend their respectability—even if only implicitly—to the idea that science and religion are just different paths to the same ultimate truth. That’s not something I want to do. If other people feel differently, that’s for them and their consciences, not something that is going to cause me to shun them.
There are two excerpts that really solidified this for me.
Due to the efforts of many smart people over the course of many years, scholars who are experts in the fundamental nature of reality have by a wide majority concluded that God does not exist. We have better explanations for how things work. The shift in perspective from theism to atheism is arguably the single most important bit of progress in fundamental ontology over the last 500 years. And it matters to people … a lot.
And if anyone is tempted to award me the Templeton Prize, I will totally accept it! And use the funds to loudly evangelize for naturalism and atheism. (After I pay off the mortgage.)
Smiles all around. 🙂