PRESIDENT OBAMA has nominated Francis Collins to be the next director of the National Institutes of Health. It would seem a brilliant choice. Dr. Collins’s credentials are impeccable: he is a physical chemist, a medical geneticist and the former head of the Human Genome Project. He is also, by his own account, living proof that there is no conflict between science and religion. In 2006, he published “The Language of God,” in which he claimed to demonstrate “a consistent and profoundly satisfying harmony” between 21st-century science and evangelical Christianity.
Science Is In the Details(7 posts) (4 voices)
"It can be difficult to think like a scientist. But few things make thinking like a scientist more difficult than religion."
Dr. Collins has demonstrated an ability to compartmentalize. Therefore, you will hear no complaints out of me.
But when challenged with alternative accounts of these phenomena — or with evidence that suggests that God might be unloving, illogical, inconsistent or, indeed, absent — Dr. Collins will say that God stands outside of Nature, and thus science cannot address the question of his existence at all.
His beliefs are irrational, plain and simple. He might be real smart, a doctor, a scientist, but his fatal flaw is a belief in the absurd.
I don't think people should be discriminated against based on religion. If he can do the job, then I'm fine with it. I've read his book, he's a smart guy, he just has a weakness for religion. A shame, but that shouldn't bar him from a government job, unless it can be demonstrated his beliefs conflict with his responsibilities.
I don't think people should be discriminated against based on religion.
I agree. Doesn't mean I'm not afraid.
Based on the things I've read, he found the idea of a cold and uncaring universe impossible to accept. He saw suffering, and in his mind there HAD to be a reason, and a plan that made everything better in the end.
That is certainly one way to view things, but I think it is ultimately an infantile one. I'm sorry he chose comfort over clarity, because it does in some ways lessen what is otherwise an amazing career.
But as long as he keeps his religion out of his job, then I don't see any reason why he shouldn't be allowed to do it.
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