Being Religious and Spiritual 1 Immateriality and Spiritual experience

According to a response on “Focus on outward appearances” some people might be confusing religiousness and spirituality with “having good faith in God“, with that God being the Divine Creator of heaven and earth.

spirituality shelf

spirituality shelf (Photo credit: professor megan)

Spirituality, which has not at all its origins in Christianity, is as old as the street, is a striking aspect of our contemporary times and stands in stark contrast to the decline in traditional religious belonging in the West.  Spirituality is about the quality of being spiritual and comes from the Old French “espiritualte, espirituaute”, variants of “spiritualite”, from Late Latin “spiritualitatem” (see spirituality). It was the church in the late 14th century  early 15th century made it to something which only could belong to “the clergy“. For the clergyman it was impossible that an other person than a qualified priest could know something about the spirit, the spiritual or spiritual life. for them spirituality became “ecclesiastical property; things pertaining to the Church“. The seldom-used sense of “fact or condition of being a spirit” is from 1680s.

The spirituality could mean or concern the immaterial, immaterialityincorporeality, otherworldliness, unearthliness. Spirituality can be the condition or quality of being spiritual but also the state or quality of being dedicated to a god or to the God, religion, or spiritual things or values, especially as contrasted with material or temporal ones. It is the involvement in an inner exploration of the meaning of the existence and the relation to the universe. To quote Random House Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary (2nd ed., 1997), spiritualism is an

“attitude or principle that inspires, animates, or pervades thought, feeling, or action,”

Spiritualism in philosophy is a characteristic of any system of thought that affirms the existence of immaterial reality imperceptible to the senses.

English: University library of Nijmegen: Encyc...

At the University library of Nijmegen a world of knowledge is available to the visitors. With the Encyclopædia Britannica people can start their quest in Spirituality and mind awareness. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

According to the Encyclopaedia Britannica:

So defined, spiritualism embraces a vast array of highly diversified philosophical views. Most patently, it applies to any philosophy accepting the notion of an infinite, personal God, the immortality of the soul, or the immateriality of the intellect and will. Less obviously, it includes belief in such ideas as finite cosmic forces or a universal mind, provided that they transcend the limits of gross Materialistic interpretation. Spiritualism as such says nothing about matter, the nature of a supreme being or a universal force, or the precise nature of spiritual reality itself. {Encyclopaedia Britannica, Micropaedia  Vol IX, p429, 15th edition,1974, 1980}

We may accept that it is the willingness of a person to take the attitude in his or her mind to have a broad sweep in thought, feeling, and practice, all pointing to the inner, subjective world of the spiritual being, the essence of live and the relationship of the human being with its environment, cosmos, plants, animals and different organisms.

It would be totally wrong to base it on an a priori theological standpoint, because it is rooted in the human search, in experimentation, questioning and exploring which existed already long before the theologians where born.

In the very old religions there was already long before Christ interest in the “dharma” meaning the “cosmic law and order” our relation in nature and to each other. The word Dharm means the “path of righteousness”. It is a path many people in the world have sought for through the many ages and it is the path the Creator wants His creation to find. Millions of people wanted to get deeper into their mind and did a quest for finding their own spirit. Spiritualism may be all about that, finding your spirit.

Spiritualism was equated by some Christians wi...

Spiritualism was equated by some Christians with witchcraft. This United States 1865 broadsheet also blamed Spiritualism for causing the Civil War. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The religion Spiritualism, postulating the belief that spirits of the dead residing in the spirit world have both the ability and the inclination to communicate with the living is something totally different. In the 19th century tension between the fanciful and the logical was made explicit, though journals denounced spiritualist beliefs in the supernatural, including “the whole business of mediums and seances”. People wanted to see how far they could go in the extremes of human folly, and if it would be possible to come in contact with people who lived previously. At the end of the previous century more Western people came in contact with Buddhism where there is the believe that we reincarnate after we die. such idea makes the people afraid of their present attitude because they know in case they are not behaving well they will reincarnate in a lower being to have a horrible life.

By the years people got convinced they could not escape the same inevitable destiny, of loosing our life. Death is something nobody can escape. We shall all die one day and many do want to know what happens when we die. They want to know if there is an afterlife and how it looks like.

By the end of the 20th Century, many had become dissatisfied with the Christian Church, especially the Roman Catholics, and had found they had many dogmatic teachings which were not in accordance with what was written in their Holy books, the Bible. Because this life did not seem to be able to bring the reasonable answers for the future, and not making them to come to full happiness, the hope to have more opportunities to grow until full happiness could be reached, looked the solution.  Believing in an afterlife for many meant believing in something which makes our lives more meaningful. With the years more people started believing again, like the ancestors in the early times in life after death and renowned spiritual mediums also talk about reincarnation and the existence of spirit world.

Also the branch of Spiritualism developed by Allan Kardec Spiritism, today found mostly in continental Europe and Latin America, especially Brazil, emphasising reincarnation is something totally different than Spirituality where people search for “the sacred“. That special thing which is “set-apart”, “holy” or “sacred” can be broadly defined as that which is set apart from the ordinary and worthy of veneration,

“a transcendent dimension within human experience…discovered in moments in which the individual questions the meaning of personal existence and attempts to place the self within a broader ontological context.” {Saucier 2007.}

Religion may be considered as

“the feelings, acts, and experiences of individual men in their solitude, so far as they apprehend themselves to stand in relation to whatever they may consider the divine.”

like the American psychologist William James (1842–1910) distinguished this personal, experiential element ”spirituality” within religion from the

“theologies, philosophies, and ecclesiastical organizations [that] may secondarily grow up” around the experience ([1902] 1985, p. 31).

Viewing religion broadly as a transcendent and often transforming experience, he left open the form of the experience itself and the devotional object at the centre of that experience. Being religious is being considered to adhere a form of religion. This is not only restricted to the Christian belief like so many think. Shamanists, Hindus, and Muslims may be even more religious than many Christians are. 20th  and 21st century surveys prove many Christians are less religious than people from other religions. Buddhists, Sophrologists, Confucians and other eastern philosophical religions are more religious and much more spiritual than the sec Christian counterparts. For many Christians there is not at all a reason to go deeper in the mind of the self For many Christians spirituality is certainly not the primary and motivating quality of their religion.

Whether the religion in question, is organized or of movement status or mostly individual; and whether it involves God, Allah, the Supreme High Being, the God of gods, Jehovah, Yahweh, other gods or other-than-human guides and spirits, or the centre of the Self, or an almighty Nature or the Almighty Most High, or an Ideal held to be worth living or dying for, it often concerns looking for a special situation of the self, a Nirvana, Cosmic Consciousness, Christ Consciousness, the Void and a spiritual inner, experiential aspect of being not bounded by a specific Christian religion. It is a general region of awareness within which people of all sorts of denominations or religion may experience, not just think about, a higher power, the absolute, with whatever title or name they may be willing to give to that higher substance, or whatever label is used for that which is not an object but which instead forms the undivided ground of all being (Huxley). Spirituality can also refer to actions arising from such spiritual experiences, the human being looking into the matter of the immaterial.

The spirituality is the willingness to come to think about the matters of the universe and to engage one self in practices that heighten the possibility of spiritual experiences. In addition, those who experience spiritual levels of consciousness often feel called to serve, and spiritually rooted service takes many forms.

Spiritual experience can occur at several levels: physical, emotional, cognitive, and transcendent. Spirituality is a quality that can infuse experience in a wide variety of settings. Spiritual experience can be both transcendent and immanent: it can be both an experience of transcending worldly concerns and an intense present-moment perception that the ground of all being permeates all things. The essence of spirituality is an intense aliveness and deep sense of understanding that one intuitively comprehends as having come from a direct, internal link with that mysterious principle which connects all aspects of the universe.

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To be continued with: Being Religious and Spiritual 2 Religiosity and spiritual life

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Read also:

  1. Living in faith
  2. Self-development, self-control, meditation, beliefs and spirituality
  3. Religion and spirituality
  4. Theology without spirituality sterile academic exercise
  5. Childish or reasonable ways
  6. Words to push and pull
  7. To mean, to think, outing your opinion, conviction, belief – Menen, mening, overtuiging, opinie, geloof
  8. The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands
  9. Making church
  10. Church sent into the world
  11. Women, conservative evangelicals and their counter-offensive
  12. Cosmos creator and human destiny
  13. Immortality, eternality – onsterfelijkheid, eeuwigheid
  14. A concrete picture of what is to come in the future
  15. Happiness is like manna
  16. Happiness an inner state

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Additional reading:

  1. Is spirituality a passing trend? by Philip Sheldrake
  2. Spiritualism in The Saturday Review and The Princess and The Goblin
  3. Dealing with the inevitable
  4. Possibility of reincarnation?

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  • Research For Spirituality (f1mediaconcepts.wordpress.com)
    We asked a range of students what spirituality meant to them. The most popular responses included these phrases: 

    • Rest for your mind
    • Time to think things through.
    • Values and morals.
    • Inner self
    • Mind and soul
    • Sense of freedom and expression.
    • Religious beliefs and having faith in something
    • Ghosts
    • Afterlife

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    Another character we look to include is a religious one. We aim to show the religious aspects of spirituality through the means of this character. There are many angles that can be taken on this, but we have chosen to focus on the Christian lifestyle. We feel that this will be the easiest to convey and understand due to the fact that the majority of people in Coventry are of Christian faith  (53.7%) http://www.facts-about-coventry.com/uploaded/documents/Census 2011 Briefing – Religion.pdf (2011 consensus). By applying core values and beliefs of Christian spirituality we will develop the character and a narrative about how they react to outside stimulus. This reaction will also contribute to how we create generic conventions of the Structured reality genre. This is due to the fact that these types of documentaries are structured around drama and conflict. These conflicts will exist between the outside stimulus, other’s values and this character’s values.

  • Spirituality is a way of life (aaaglass.wordpress.com)
    Spirituality is not about a religion. Neither is it about gods and rituals. Spirituality is the ability to see  the spirit of the creator in everything around us , be it a flower or a stone. And then to act and behave accordingly. We come to this earth to live our lives, fulfill the purpose of life as we evolve, learn and teach others through our existence and then move on to another from of life as we go back to our creator. May I am not spiritual as I would like to be. But one thing is certain – I am not a religious. For me Spirituality is a principled way of life; it’s an attitude. There are a dozen attributes to life, to building a positive attitude, embedded in the very word ‘Spirituality’. Let me walk you through each letter of the word ‘spirituality’ (As mentioned in one of  the article of Rajashree Birla published in TOI).
  • Immaterial (lifeontheapex.wordpress.com)
    Just as theism contains a huge number of organized belief systems (and a potentially infinite number of unorganized belief systems), atheism, while not a belief system in itself, includes in its definition a wide variety of beliefs systems as well. A simple lack of belief does not define a philosophy, but once one has rejected theistic systems many secular options become available, including, but not limited to Rationalism, Materialism, Nihilism, Existentialism, Humanism, and secular varieties of Eastern religion such as Buddhism, Taoism, and Jainism.
    +
    Some argue that ‘atheism’ shouldn’t just indicate disbelief in gods and other spiritual entities, but a complete rejection of all things immaterial.
  • What Wishes to Come to Being through You? (agentleinstigator.wordpress.com)
    “By this age, the ego strength necessary for self-examination may have reached a level where it can reflect upon itself, critique itself, and risk altering choices, and thereby values as well.”
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    “Only what is experientally true is worthy of a mature spirituality… A mature spirituality will seldom provide us with answers,  and necessarily so, but will instead ask ever-larger questions of us. Larger questions will lead to larger life.”
  • Wealth usually distracts one from a spiritual path (transientreflections.com)
    Wealth and Spiritual / Religious paths rarely mixes due to the fact wealth usually distracts one from a spiritual path.
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    the choice is yours alone so I can not tell you which to follow nor fault you on which you choose. It is a God given gift of freewill that gives you the ability and right to choose your own path.
  • Consumerism vs Spirituality (theiamvibration.wordpress.com)
    Consumerism is a general term with different contexts and therefore slightly different meanings. In this context however, it refers to the materialistic lifestyle, concerned with the acquisition of material things through the process purchasing. In other words it is the culture of buying goods and services.
    Spirituality, likewise does not have a single set definition, because it is a culture so universal that it has a translation in every prominent lifestyle. It is the search of a greater purpose, better and healthier living, in faith of ascension to divinity. The pursuits of spirituality are immaterial in objective.
    The two are based essentially on two opposite premise, one material and one immaterial.
  • Spirituality and the Rat Race: can you maintain a spiritual focus in the 9-to-5 world? (findingtheinnerway.com)
    Can a working professional in a high-stress job maintain a consistent spiritual focus—or are the stresses of work incompatible with the contemplative life?
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    Everything in modern city life is calculated to keep man from entering into himself and thinking about spiritual things. Even with the best of intentions a spiritual man finds himself exhausted and deadened and debased by the constant noise of machines and loudspeakers, the dead air and the glaring lights of offices and shops.
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    There are some people who are perfectly capable of tasting true spiritual peace in an active life but who would go crazy if they had to keep themselves still in absolute solitude and silence for any length of time…what a hopeless thing the spiritual life would be if it could only be lived under ideal conditions.
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    Like all things in life, I suppose it’s about balance, about finding the happy medium between the working life and the contemplative life. It’s a fluid situation, with the demands of work ebbing and flowing—but then isn’t finding and defining our purpose in life fluid as well, a constantly moving target?
  • Paul Lenda ~ 9 Ways To Spot A Fake Guru Or Spiritual Teacher (shiftfrequency.com)
    The old paradigm of life-controlling and mind-manipulating belief systems has left many to finally realize they have been living in an artificial reality created by egotistical people on power trips. This has led to a situation where many are wandering, trying to find their own way in a world without many true leaders, and as a result of this, a new market has developed which attempts to showcase answers to those people who have become disillusioned with the old dogmatic systems.
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    There’s an influx of ‘enlightened masters of the universe’ pervading the spiritual sphere these days. Gurus and spiritual teachers are popping up left and right. Many of them seem to provide an easy way out of the voids many people feel they have within their lives, and as a result these gurus and teachers make a ridiculously massive amount of money… even earning social ranks akin to being glamorous superstars.
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    genuine spiritual teachers and self-growth coaches are often disregarded as being ‘false gurus’ giving out spiritual-sounding nonsense that lacks substance and is unhelpful for a person’s spiritual growth.
  • (#7) Family, Huh, Yeah, What Is It Good For… (bushmansblogi.wordpress.com)
    Our greatest joys and deepest sorrows are most often experienced within the context of family.
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    It is in the home where either a spiritual void is discovered or a spiritual direction is initiated. This is seen in experiences that families go through together and how they adapt, as well as in family traditions, and finally, even the absence of spirituality in the home aids children in determining their own beliefs.
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    Lack of spirituality in the home contributes in a different way, but nonetheless contributes, to children’s spiritual development. For many, they believe or don’t because their parents did or didn’t. Yet for others, as they mature they begin to recognize the spiritual void felt in their home and they seek out answers. Many children or young adults are introduced to religious matters through school, media, or friends. The lack of spirituality in their home perhaps causes them to desire it more.
  • Deep Within, We Want it All By Brenda Hoffman (renardmoreau.wordpress.com)
    For many there is an additional more personal piece. You wish to recreate some of the glories of past lifetimes. All of you have experienced both depravity, because of religious teachings, and lives with extreme levels of fame and wealth.You are now more interested in your past glories than the religious penitence that marked at least one of your lifetimes. Yet, you will not allow yourself access to the glories and riches you hold dear in this time and place because you are not certain you can achieve your goal – or that you want to.
  • Are Esoteric Teachings Missing from Christianity? (jesusweddingthebook.wordpress.com)
    In my opinion, Christianity is the only tradition that openly celebrates both spiritual paths. I can agree that there is no secret teaching, because both spiritual paths are out in the open for everyone to see. However, by definition, the esoteric teaching is the second leg of the spiritual journey. The esoteric teaching does not have to be “secret” in order to maintain its mystery. The mystery of the esoteric path can only be revealed when the exoteric path or first leg of the spiritual journey is fully completed.
  • Discovering the Truth (cosmicmacduff.wordpress.com)
    for me it has been and is the walking that is important, not any place that I might arrive at or achievement I might accomplish.  I think that I have discovered  a lot since I started, but do not consider myself “enlightened”,  just aware of who  I am.  For me this primary truth, a recognition that there was/is something  more to me (my soul)  than my physical body, is what allowed me and still allows me, to find meaning and purpose in life.
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    there is nothing you need outside of yourself.  Everything you need to know about yourself you already know.  Pursuing or walking a spiritual path is the way in which you will re-discover or access the truth about yourself.
  • Artists forge their own spiritual path at Promenade Gallery – Mississauga (allowinglove.wordpress.com)
    “The Art of Conscious Living,” challenges the traditional view of spiritual enlightenment through abstract paintings each coupled with poetic verse.
  • Meditation – Do try it! (trishbarcatta.wordpress.com)
    Some people find it hard to drown everything else out so as to quiet the mind, but you don’t need to do that. You can just gently bring your focus back to what you need to and not be so hard on yourself.
  • How To Begin On The Spiritual Path (anandasingapore.wordpress.com)
    The seeker cannot be confined to a particular religion, rather, he or she must embrace the Divine teachings of all religions, and bow humbly, and revere the saints of all religions, for all saints have attained to Godhood, and making any distinction within the Fundamental Unity of God is contrary to the Divine Path.
    +
    The Same Thought …
    no saint can say anything different from other saints, because the God all saints revere is the same, except that Prophets down the ages have said things in different ways according to the social circumstances of the times.
  • Am I A Religious Person? (elephantjournal.com) + But is it my religion?
    I’ve heard it said that religion is having someone else’s spiritual experience and spirituality is having your own. It’s certainly true that some Buddhists venerate the Buddha or other teachers to such a high degree that they are just having the Buddha’s experience and not their own. I don’t do that. The Buddha warned us against doing that. He said, “Don’t worship me,” and right after his death, people started doing it.

    I really don’t think the Dharma of the Buddha is a religion—at least not as I practice it.
    +
    we’ve all heard people say, “I’m spiritual but not religious.” I’ve always thought that was a little weird, but it’s probably relatively accurate.
    +
    I believe in spiritual awakening. If I have a religion, maybe spiritual awakening is what it should be called.
    +

    So I’m Told God Isn’t a Buddhist!
    In the East, there was a more pragmatic approach in dealing with reality as it presented itself. Taoism and Buddhism in particular face the real illusions of the mind with philosophies rooted in the nature of man—always geared towards finding harmony.
    +

    To define Buddhahood or Buddha as God is an impossibility as Buddhism teaches self-reliance and that every being is given the opportunity to awaken. Yet, since Buddhahood exists in all things, it really depends on how you define God. God has so many definitions, understandings and misunderstandings. And, tellingly, the gods of Buddhism must ultimately die.

    The core of religious belief is the understanding of a spiritual way to inhabit the world. Whether one uses terms such as God, Buddha, Jesus Christ or Krishna, does not change the intent. The tree is still the tree. The bird is still the bird. If you jump into a lake, you will still get wet!

  • Daily Teaching for Wednesday, November 27th (bishopcraig.com)
    Thankfulness is a practice that acknowledges that we really cannot possibly control everything that happens to us. It is therefore an expression of humility, one of the most important spiritual virtues.
    +
    Daily Teaching for Wednesday, December 4th
    Every generation believes that their children’s generation is something of a lost cause. The difference is that this time my generation just might be right.
  • Simply Being With Nothing to Be: A Commentary (edoshonin.com)
    Renunciation of unskilful attitudes and behaviours is therefore a prerequisite for entry onto the spiritual path. Many people believe that spiritual renunciation means forgetting about the world and everything we know. However, this represents a mistaken understanding because rather than forgetting about or turning one’s back on the world, true spiritual renunciation means completely surrendering oneself to, and becoming fully immersed in, the world. In order to surrender ourselves to the world we have to let go of all our attachments and all our aversions. We have to let go of hope and fear. If we harbour hopes then we leave ourselves exposed to suffering. Hope means that we are not content with the present moment and that we wish to try and change it. However, the only way to really change the present moment is to immerse ourselves fully in it – hope stops us from doing this. If we have hope, then we automatically have fear. We are fearful that our hopes will not be realized. Many people think that in order to be happy they need hope. But this kind of happiness is very conditional and is reliant upon the presence of external factors.
  • Gyo-shin-ki Evolution (gyoshinki.wordpress.com)
    We all spend a great deal of time learning techniques.
    +
    Our techniques are a utility to learning how to interact with the current situation with unified body, speech and mind. Without a deep exploration beyond the shapes, the forms and techniques are fundamentally worthless for the purpose of the art – realization and manifestation of truth.

Reconciling Science and Religion

Reconciling Science and Religion

Science and religion [are] no longer seen as incompatible.”—The Daily Telegraph, London, May 26, 1999.

Clerks studying astronomy and geometry. France...

Clerks studying astronomy and geometry. France, early 15th century. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Both science and religion, in their noblest forms, involve the search for truth. Science discovers a world of magnificent order, a universe that contains distinctive marks of intelligent design. True religion makes these discoveries meaningful by teaching that the mind of the Creator lies behind the design manifest in the physical world.

“I find my appreciation of science is greatly enriched by religion,”

says Francis Collins, a molecular biologist. He continues:

“When I discover something about the human genome, I experience a sense of awe at the mystery of life, and say to myself, ‘Wow, only God knew before.’ It is a profoundly beautiful and moving sensation, which helps me appreciate God and makes science even more rewarding for me.”

What will help one to reconcile science and religion?

An Enduring Quest

Accept the limits:

No end is in sight in our quest for answers about the infinite universe, space, and time. Biologist Lewis Thomas noted:

“There will be no end to this process, being the insatiably curious species that we are, exploring, looking around and trying to understand things. We’re not ever going to get it solved. I can’t imagine any terminal point where everyone will breathe a sigh and will say, ‘Now we understand the whole thing.’ It’s going to remain beyond us.”

Similarly, when it comes to religious truth, the reach is boundless. One of the Bible writers, Paul, stated:

“Now we see only puzzling reflections in a mirror . . . My knowledge now is partial.”—1 Corinthians 13:12, The New English Bible.

Partial knowledge concerning both scientific and religious questions, however, does not prevent us from reaching sound conclusions based on the facts we have. We don’t need a detailed knowledge of the origin of the sun in order to be absolutely sure that it is going to rise tomorrow.

Let the known facts speak:

Science and Religion are portrayed to be in ha...

Science and Religion are portrayed to be in harmony in the Tiffany window Education (1890). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the quest for answers, we need to be guided by sound principles. Unless we stick to the highest standards of evidence, we can easily be misled in our search for scientific and religious truth. Realistically, none of us can begin to evaluate all scientific knowledge and ideas, which today fill huge libraries. On the other hand, the Bible provides a manageable compendium of spiritual teachings for our consideration. The Bible is well supported by known facts.*

However, concerning knowledge in general, earnest effort is required to distinguish between fact and speculation, between reality and deception—in both science and religion. As the Bible writer Paul advised, we need to reject “the contradictions of the falsely called ‘knowledge.’” (1 Timothy 6:20) To reconcile science and the Bible, we must let the facts speak for themselves, thereby avoiding conjecture and speculation, and examine how each fact supports and adds to the other.

For example, when we understand that the Bible uses the term “day” to represent various periods of time, we see that the account of the six creative days in Genesis need not conflict with the scientific conclusion that the age of the earth is about four and a half billion years. According to the Bible, the earth existed for an unstated period before the creative days began. (See note 2: “The Creative Days—24 Hours Each?”) Even if science corrects itself and suggests a different age for our planet, the statements made in the Bible still hold true. Instead of contradicting the Bible, science in this and many other cases actually provides us with voluminous supplemental information about the physical world, both present and past.

Faith, not credulity:

The Bible provides us with knowledge of God and his purposes that cannot be gleaned from any other source. Why should we trust it? The Bible itself invites us to test its accuracy. Consider its historical authenticity, its practicality, the candour of its writers, and its integrity. By investigating the accuracy of the Bible, including statements of a scientific nature and, even more convincingly, the unerring fulfilment of hundreds of prophecies throughout the ages and into our present day, one can acquire firm faith in it as the Word of God. Faith in the Bible is not credulity but a proven confidence in the accuracy of Scriptural statements.

Respect science; acknowledge belief:

People should as such not look so much for words of people but should look more for Words coming from the Divine Creator Himself. When we do find His Word we should trust in that Word of God. The apostle Paul stated:

“When you received God’s word, which you heard from us, you accepted it, not as the word of men, but, just as it truthfully is, as the word of God.”—1 Thessalonians 2:13.

English: Home bible study with the help of a b...

Home bible study with the help of a bible teacher. The yellow book seen in the photo is What Does the Bible Really Teach? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Of course, as with science, damaging falsehoods and practices have infiltrated religion. Thus, there is true religion and false religion. That is why many people have left organized, mainstream religion to become members of other smaller Christian congregations. Those people came to understand it would be better to join those who are not of the majority mainstream Christian churches, but are people who live conform the Biblical truth. Many searchers for truth have been disappointed by the unwillingness of their previous religions to disavow human tradition and myth in favour of discovered or revealed truth. Therefore they found it more appropriate to join the perhaps more hated group of Bible readers and more active Bible Students, because they found it more important to do the Will of God instead of keeping to traditions and popularity.

What is more, true Christians find real meaning and purpose in life, based on an intimate knowledge of the Creator, as he is revealed in the Bible, and of His expressed intentions for humankind and the planet we live on. Those serious Bible Students have been satisfied with reasonable, Bible-based answers to such questions as, Why are we here? Where are we going? They would be more than glad to share these insights with you.

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Notes:

1. See The Bible—God’s Word or Man’s? published by Jehovah’s Witnesses.

2. The Creative Days—24 Hours Each?

  Some fundamentalists claim

that creationism rather than evolution explains pre-human history. They

assert that all physical creation was produced in just six days of 24

hours each sometime between 6,000 and 10,000 years ago. But in doing so,

they promote an unscriptural teaching that has caused many to ridicule

the Bible.

  Is a day in the Bible always literally 24 hours in length? Genesis 2:4 speaks of “the day that Jehovah God made earth and heaven.” This one day encompasses all six of the creative days of Genesis chapter 1.

According to Bible usage, a day is a measured period of time and can be

a thousand years or many thousands of years. The Bible’s creative days

allow for thousands of years of time each. Further, the earth was

already in existence before the creative days began. (Genesis 1:1) On this point, therefore, the Bible account is compatible with true science.

However, do not let this escape your notice, beloved ones, that one day is with Jehovah* as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day.+ (2 Peter 3:8).

  Commenting on claims that the

creative days were only 24 literal hours in length, molecular biologist

Francis Collins remarks:

“Creationism has done more harm to serious

notions of belief than anything in modern history.”

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Preceding articles:

Bible containing scientific information

The mythical conflict of science and Scripture (1)

The mythical conflict of science and Scripture (2)

Science and the Bible—Do They Really Contradict Each Other?

Are Science and the Bible Compatible?

Science and Religion Harmonized (Once and For All…)

Dutch version / Nederlandse versie: Wetenschap en religie zijn met elkaar te rijmen

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Additional reading:

  1. God’s design in the creation of the world
  2. Only one God
  3. God is One
  4. Attributes to God
  5. Cosmos creator and human destiny
  6. Incomplete without the mind of God
  7. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  8. Doctrine and Conduct Cause and Effect
  9. Creation of the earth out of something
  10. Life and attitude of a Christian
  11. Is it “Wrong” to Believe that the Earth is a Sphere? Inclusive the first generation of Christadelphians their views
  12. A dialogue about the earth moving and spinning around the sun
  13. Everyday beauty

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Find also related:

  • Fulfilled Prophecy – Proof of Bible’s Divine Inspiration?
  • Izak Burger who replied to Forbes article “Jerry Coyne’s Twisted History of Science and Religion”: Enter Copernicus. His book caused a massive change in the way people thought about the universe. If you think this was a problem for the church: It was even more of a problem for the universities. Copernicus actually delayed the publication of his book, not because he was worried about the church, but because he worried about the academics! If I recall the history correctly, this was more than just a new model: It was “experimental” mathematics.
  • How to falsify a religion using scientific or historical evidenceIf you prove that the universe is eternal than would falsify the Bible’s claim that God created the universe out of nothing. That would be a scientific disproof. If you could find the body of Jesus still inside a tomb, that would falsify the Bible’s claim about a resurrection. That would be a historical disproof. The nice thing about Christianity is that we make lots of testable claims. Christianity is about forming beliefs that are in line with the available evidence.

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  • Science & Religion: The Paramount Candour (umbrascriptor.wordpress.com)
    Scientific truths are cautious. Science believes that nothing is absolutely true. What is regarded as true today may be proved to be false the very next day by further experiments and observations. Thus, there was a time when the earth was supposed to be motionless and the sun was supposed to go round it but gradually science proved that this was wrong and showed that it is the earth which goes round the sun. Similarly, Newton’s law of gravitation held the day till Einstein came out with his superior theory of relativity. In this way, science advances towards truth as absolute. But whatever is written in religious books is regarded as absolutely true. Anyone who criticizes the teaching of religion is considered to be a heretic and is violently condemned. In the past, those who dared to question a religious truth were mercilessly persecuted and punished, and the example of Galileo readily comes to mind in this connection. Even more, who knows not about the Darwin’s theory of evolution. In short, science is progressive and dynamic while religion are static and orthodox and this shows that there is a great conflict between science and religion.
  • Science is not a religion. (twoculturescourse.wordpress.com)
    Some people scream ignorance at those who believe in God, or something greater than man. But look at what is around us, an incredible Earth filled with infinite opportunity and some of the most incredible natural occurrences ever.
  • Mendel Medal Recipient Seeks to Reconcile Science and Religion (vutimes.wordpress.com)
    The Villanova University Mendel Medal is an award presented to outstanding scientists, aware of the limitations of science, seeking to bridge the gap between science and religion. In the Mendel Medal Lecture given by the 2013 Medal recipient Dr. Sylvester “Jim” Gates, Dr. Gates emphasized the uncertainty inherent to science and how this uncertainty means that we will forever be unable to truthfully define reality.
    Truthfully defining something is not the same as accurately defining something. For a long time, science has been able to accurately define things in the natural world for the desired application. Consider pi. If you wish to use pi in an equation, a value of 3.14 will generally suffice. This is an accurate representation of pi. However, this is not the true value of pi. I could fill this entire issue of the Times and every paper that exists with digits of pi and it would still not be true, despite being incredibly accurate. Consequently, it is science’s ultimate inability to reflect complete and utterly certain truth that is what will always allow religion to coexist with and even to complement science.
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    With further understanding of science and its inherent uncertainty, we can begin to establish a dialogue between science and religion even in areas where fierce radicals on both sides stubbornly persist.
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    The Big Bang: From Humble Beginnings

  • Text to Text | Einstein and ‘Where Science and Religion Coexist’ (learning.blogs.nytimes.com)
    In this Text to Text, we take on the question of the compatibility of science and religion, with an excerpt from a Times Opinion piece written by Albert Einstein in 1930; a 2013 report on a conference between scientists and Buddhist monks hosted by the Dalai Lama; and a video in which the theoretical physicist Richard Feynman talks about trying to find answers to life’s big questions while living with doubt.
  • Politics, Science, and Religion (thefloridaconservative.com)
    Like politics and science, many people deny they are religious. This would mean they have no organized world view, or beliefs.  Even if you do not believe in something, you believe in something. The triad of Politics, Science and Religion is inescapable.
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    Those who would exploit Politics, Science, and Religion count on your ignorance in the area of critical thinking. They count on the herd mentality that affects the human condition. If someone I respect based on my world view says something, it is a common tendency to consider it factual.  Nothing could be more perilous than to fall into this trap.  Ask any sheep.
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    Critical thinking requires you to step outside your personal belief system. This is probably the most difficult.  It requires you to question everything and everyone.  You will need to be strict with yourself to create a discussion that argues the vice and virtue of both sides. You will need to build evidence that proves both sides.  You must be determined and constantly ask yourself if you are just trying to support your own personal beliefs.
  • David Barash explores science, religion and meaning of life in ‘Buddhist Biology’ (washington.edu)
    For better or worse, there has been a lot of intellectual conflict between science and religion these days, and although I consider myself one of the “New Atheists,” I am also an aspiring Buddhist and have been about as long as I’ve been a biologist: more than 40 years. The sad truth is that for the most part, science and religion do not get along very well – especially because religion keeps making various “truth claims” that are simply untrue! But Buddhism is a fascinating exception.
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    I don’t accept some of the more extreme notions of Buddhism, especially karma as it pertains to reincarnation. That is, I don’t believe that that each of us is going to be reborn in the future as some creature or other, or that our current situation is somehow a result of what we did in a prior life. By any biological or scientific standard, this is arrant nonsense. But biologists including myself acknowledge that every organism is literally composed of atoms and molecules that have been and will continue to be recycled from a “prior existence” as plants, other animals, dirt, rocks, atmospheric particles, etc.
  • Science Vs Religion (beccsbordom.wordpress.com)

Science and Religion Harmonized (Once and For All…)

Things can be seen from different angles and told in different ways, though they should not have to contradict each other. Look for example at the witnesses of a car accident. They may bring a different story about the same account and both still telling what really happened.

Scriptures never did have the intention to give a scientific analyses of what happened in the world, but wanted to tell the story of the beginning and development of humankind in an easy to understand and to follow way. Details where there of no importance, and the Creator gave brains to the people which they can use to find out more, because it is all shown in the universe of the Creator, available to be seen by those who want to see.

The Creator did love His creation and did not want to annoy them with details of His creation. What would it contribute for them all? Those who are interested in more details He allowed to look for them and to find them. It is our own choice either to use our heads to think and reason with. for Him the heart is the most essential and He knows the heart of every living soul.

” And Jehovah said to Samuel, Do not look on his appearance, nor to the height of his stature, for I have rejected him. For man does not see what He sees. For man looks for the eyes, but Jehovah looks for the heart.” (1Sa 16:7 LITV)

” So says Jehovah, Cursed is the man who trusts in man, and who makes flesh his arm, and who turns aside his heart from Jehovah.  (6)  For he shall be like a juniper in the desert, and shall not see when good comes. But he shall live in parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land that is not inhabited.  (7)  Blessed is the man who trusts in Jehovah, and Jehovah is his refuge.  (8)  For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters. It sends out its roots by the stream, and it will not fear when the heat comes; but its foliage will be green; and it is not anxious in the year of drought, nor will it cease from yielding fruit.  (9)  The heart is deceitful above all things, and it is incurable; who can know it?  (10)  I, Jehovah, search the heart, I try the reins, even to give to each man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings.  (11)  As a partridge broods and does not hatch, so is he who makes riches, and not by right; it will leave him in the middle of his days, and in his end he will be a fool.” (Jer 17:5-11 LITV)

The Word of God should speak to the hearts of man. Wisdom and strength it can give. Nowhere in the Scriptures is written we should not use our heads to find out more about the universe, the why and how. But everything we can get to learn we should use in our life to advance and to make it better. Religion and science can be complementary and by integrating  the two we as human beings shall be able to progress and to achieve a broader spectrum of understanding.

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  • Science & Religion: The Paramount Candour (umbrascriptor.wordpress.com)
    Arising from the renaissance epoch, one of the most significant dichotomies that make us stop to ponder is religion and science. Relying on the definitions of science and religion, the difference seems to be evident because these two concepts originate from different dimensions of human activities. Science is usually referred to as the study of processes, forces, and development of nature, which is based on the analysis of evidence.  Religion, on the other hand, is closely connected to faith. These are two extremes and we are left to moot whether they can peacefully coexist or not.
  • Science is not a religion. (twoculturescourse.wordpress.com)
    The bible is far too often taken far too literally. It is a moral guide. Yes, some religions have extremists sects that are aggressive and believe in killing others. What about the religions that don’t? Kids may grow up in a household with their parents, taught what they should believe, then they grow up and think for themselves. It is not necessarily right for some kids to be forced what to believe, but in the end, they will make their own decision.
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    Some people don’t believe in evolution, that’s fine. But with a minimal knowledge of what religion is truly about, people too often jump to the conclusion that every single person who is religious believes in the story of Adam and Eve. There is a direct correlation between ignorance in science and ignorance in religion, I think. The focus should be mending that rift, not spreading it further through ignorant words, actions, and even hatred. Dawkins, you really fueled the fire. Faith exists for a reason. Faith is believing in something beyond yourself, that you may not be able to physically prove.
  • Science and Religion…a Contradiction? (apocalypticbluesblog.wordpress.com)
    Another common error in these comparisons is to cling too closely to one’s own religious dogma, ignoring not only science but also the vast tradition of wisdom handed down throughout history and existing among all religions. This sort of religious provincialism (my sacred scriptures are sacred and true, while your sacred scriptures are mistaken and false) waters down not only their own arguments, but those of all who cling to arguments of this type. Similarly, scientists might point to the obviously mistaken cosmology of early Christianity (for example) while ignoring the accurate cosmological (and astronomical) observations of Vedanta, five thousand years before.
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    Insofar as religions focus on our actions in this world, they concentrate on what we should do in the world. Science focuses on how the world works, not on what we should do in it.
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    In religion, knowledge can be obtained by inspiration, while in science true knowledge can only be obtained by testing, observation, and repeatability of results.
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    Religion focuses on the questions ‘who’ and ‘what,’ while science focuses on the questions ‘how’ and ‘why.’
  • Why religion thrived where science failed. (secularnewsdaily.com)
    Science has always been exclusive. If you can’t understand a scientific theory/fact you were deemed stupid and therefore not welcomed in the science community. Whereas, religion has always been inclusive. For the masters and the slaves, for the lords and the serfs, God has been ever present. Because religion doesn’t care how intelligent you are as long as you believe.
  • Understanding Spiritual Evolution – Part 3 (aquariusparadigm.com)
    It’s important for humanity to become informed of the existence of the spiritual realms and of our impending collective evolution into them, because despite the timetable our ascension is on, I must reiterate that we all need to understand and be focused on it to bring it into manifestation.
  • Can science address the idea of an ultimate creator and religion? (nerissavictoria.wordpress.com)
    Some atheists say that ‘God’ is just a word for ‘what science hasn’t discovered yet’. With the constant development of technology and the multiple findings given by scientists, this statement is becoming more and more accurate. However this scientific knowledge does not provide us as everyday people with the key to civilisation. Religion seems to be the glue that holds communities and societies together and so the fact that religion itself can have such a positive impact on a large scale makes me question… Why can’t theistic believers and humanist optimist see God as the brains behind the scientific explanation of the creation of the universe?
  • Dichotomy or duality? (twoculturescourse.wordpress.com)
    One of the most interesting parts of the Science and Religion article was the illustration describing the relationship between the two. The comparison was made between the dual properties of light as both a particle and wave. Based on what knowledge I have about physics I was interested to see how far the comparison could be taken. Light has characteristics as a wave and a particle that overlap to some extent, but at the same time have contradicting attributes based on the position of observation.
  • Science Vs Religion (beccsbordom.wordpress.com)
    I believe that science has stronger evidence against religion but due to my upbringing I agree with the religious side of everything and anything. http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Gfa88SeNohY#
  • One for Dawkins (twoculturescourse.wordpress.com)
    I have always been skeptical when people believe that a religion helped to heal someone and not the sciences.  Even when I was a little girl and my mom made me go to church and Sunday school every week, I never had much faith.  I wouldn’t say that I don’t believe in any religion, I’m more just not sure what kind of higher power I believe in.  Anyways, I have always thought of everything in very scientific and technical terms.
  • David Barash explores science, religion and meaning of life in ‘Buddhist Biology’ (washington.edu)
    David Barash, a University of Washington psychology professor, is an evolutionary biologist, unapologetic atheist, and self-described Jewbu. In his latest book, “Buddhist Biology: Ancient Eastern Wisdom Meets Modern Western Science,” Barash examines the overlap between Buddhism and biology.
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    In the book, I relate Buddhist concepts to science. Anatman (“not-self”), for example, means that no one has an internal self that is distinct and separate from the rest of the world. Similarly in ecology, organisms and environments are inextricably inter-connected. Also, Anitya (“impermanence”) refers to the fact that all things are temporary and eventually return to the non-living world. Anitya has parallels with evolution, in that not only is every individual organism’s time on earth temporary but also organisms ebb and flow across time.
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    Both Buddhism and biology (and also existentialism) teach that there is no inherent meaning to life. We simply are, and that “we” or “I” or “you” or “he” or “she” is merely a temporary aggregation of matter and energy, destined (or doomed) to collapse back into the stuff of the world. Therefore, if we want to make our lives meaningful, we should not look to some outside deity, but rather to our own actions.

Just One Yogi

There appears to be a contradiction between the basic tenets of science and religion. Much arguing and division has resulted from the perception that the two are mutually opposed, or that one’s existence threatens the validity or purpose of the other. This conflict is most easily seen in views about the facts surrounding the Big Bang (or Creation, if you prefer) and evolution. I believe this apparent contradiction is easily resolved.

Consider this:

-What if science was right about the Big Bang, given their current understanding of it thus far?

-What if the religion was also right about Creation, and science merely described the process of how it was accomplished?

The same could be said about any function of God, of Life, and of nature and physics: science describes the operation of the world around us. Its realm is in that of the known, the seen, the empirical and objective…

View original post 113 more words

Science and the Bible—Do They Really Contradict Each Other?

Nikolaus Kopernikus.jpg

Portrait of Mikołaj Kopernik, better known as Nicolaus Copernicus 1580, Toruń Old Town City Hall

galileo_card

galileo_card (Photo credit: triviaqueen)

The seeds of the clash between Galileo and the Catholic Church were sown centuries before the Renaissance mathematician and astronomer Copernicus and Galileo were born. The earth-centered, or geocentric, view of the universe was adopted by the ancient Greeks and made famous by the philosopher Aristotle (384-322 B.C.E.) and the astronomer-astrologer Ptolemy (second century C.E.).*

Aristotle’s concept of the universe was influenced by the thinking of Greek mathematician and philosopher Pythagoras (sixth century B.C.E.). Adopting Pythagoras’ view that the circle and sphere were perfect shapes, Aristotle believed that the heavens were a series of spheres within spheres, like layers of an onion. Each layer was made of crystal, with the earth at the center. Stars moved in circles, deriving their motion from the outermost sphere, the seat of divine power. Aristotle also held that the sun and other celestial objects were perfect, free of any marks or blemishes and not subject to change.

Ancient Greek philosophers such as Plato and A...

Ancient Greek philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle would become highly revered in the christian world and later also in the medieval Islamic world. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Aristotle’s great scheme was a child of philosophy, not science. A moving earth, he felt, would violate common sense. He also rejected the idea of a void, or space, believing that a moving earth would be subject to friction and would grind to a halt without the application of constant force. Because Aristotle’s concept seemed logical within the framework of existing knowledge, it endured in its basic form for almost 2,000 years. Even as late as the 16th century, French philosopher, jurist and polyhistor Jean Bodin expressed that popular view, stating: “No one in his senses, or imbued with the slightest knowledge of physics, will ever think that the earth, heavy and unwieldy . . . , staggers . . . around its own centre and that of the sun; for at the slightest jar of the earth, we would see cities and fortresses, towns and mountains thrown down.”

Aristotle Adopted by the Church

The fifth of Thomas Aquinas' proofs of God's e...

The fifth of Thomas Aquinas’ proofs of God’s existence was based on teleology (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A further step leading to the confrontation between Galileo and the church occurred in the 13th century and involved Catholic authority Thomas Aquinas (1225-74). Aquinas had a profound respect for Aristotle, whom he referred to as The Philosopher. Aquinas struggled for five years to fuse Aristotle’s philosophy with church teaching. By the time of Galileo, says Wade Rowland in his book Galileo’s Mistake, “the hybridized Aristotle in the theology of Aquinas had become bedrock dogma of the Church of Rome.” Keep in mind, too, that in those days there was no scientific community as such. Education was largely in the hands of the church. The authority on religion and science was often one and the same.

The stage was now set for the confrontation between the church and Galileo. Even before his involvement with astronomy, Galileo had written a treatise on motion. It challenged many assumptions made by the revered Aristotle. However, it was Galileo’s steadfast promotion of the heliocentric concept and his assertion that it harmonizes with Scripture that led to his trial by the Inquisition in 1633.

In his defense, Galileo affirmed his strong faith in the Bible as the inspired Word of God. He also argued that the Scriptures were written for ordinary people and that Biblical references to the apparent movement of the sun were not to be interpreted literally. His arguments were futile. Because Galileo rejected an interpretation of Scripture based on Greek philosophy, he stood condemned! Not until 1992 did the Catholic Church officially admit to error in its judgement of Galileo.

Lessons to Be Learned

What can we learn from these events? For one thing, Galileo had no quarrel with the Bible. Instead, he questioned the teachings of the church. One religion writer observed: “The lesson to be learned from Galileo, it appears, is not that the Church held too tightly to biblical truths; but rather that it did not hold tightly enough.” By allowing Greek philosophy to influence its theology, the church bowed to tradition rather than follow the teachings of the Bible.

All of this calls to mind the Biblical warning:

“Look out: perhaps there may be someone who will carry you off as his prey through the philosophy and empty deception according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary things of the world and not according to Christ.”—Colossians 2:8.

A page of hand-written notes, with a sketch of branching lines.

In mid-July 1837 Darwin started his “B” notebook on Transmutation of Species, and on page 36 wrote “I think” above his first evolutionary tree.

Even today, many in Christendom continue to embrace theories and philosophies that contradict the Bible. One example is Darwin’s theory of evolution, which they have accepted in place of the Genesis account of creation. In making this substitution, the churches have, in effect, made Darwin a modern-day Aristotle and evolution an article of faith.*

True Science Harmonizes With the Bible

The foregoing should in no way discourage an interest in science. To be sure, the Bible itself invites us to learn from God’s handiwork and to discern God’s amazing qualities in what we see. (Isaiah 40:26; Romans 1:20) Of course, the Bible does not claim to teach science. Rather, it reveals God’s standards, aspects of his personality that creation alone cannot teach, and his purpose for humans. (Psalm 19:7-11; 2 Timothy 3:16) Yet, when the Bible does refer to natural phenomena, it is consistently accurate. Galileo himself said: “Both the Holy Scriptures and nature proceed from the Divine Word . . . Two truths can never contradict one another.” Consider the following examples.

Even more fundamental than the movement of stars and planets is that all matter in the universe is governed by laws, such as the law of gravity. The earliest known non-Biblical reference to physical laws was made by Pythagoras, who believed that the universe could be explained by numbers. Two thousand years later, Galileo, Kepler, and Newton finally proved that matter is governed by rational laws.

The earliest Biblical reference to natural law is contained in the book of Job. About 1600 B.C.E., God asked Job: “Have you come to know the statutes [or, laws] of the heavens?” (Job 38:33) Recorded in the seventh century B.C.E., the book of Jeremiah refers to Jehovah as the Creator of “the statutes of the moon and the stars” and “the statutes of heaven and earth.” (Jeremiah 31:35; 33:25) In view of these statements, Bible commentator G. Rawlinson observed:

“The general prevalence of law in the material world is quite as strongly asserted by the sacred writers as by modern science.”

If we use Pythagoras as a point of reference, the statement in Job was about a thousand years ahead of its time. Keep in mind that the Bible’s objective is not simply to reveal physical facts but primarily to impress upon us that Jehovah is the Creator of all things—the one who can create physical laws.—Job 38:4, 12; 42:1, 2.

The Hydrologic Cycle. Illustration by Tom Schultz

Another example we can consider is that the earth’s waters undergo a cyclic motion called the water cycle, or the hydrologic cycle. Put simply, water evaporates from the sea, forms clouds, precipitates onto the land, and eventually returns to the sea. The oldest surviving non-Biblical references to this cycle are from the fourth century B.C.E. However, Biblical statements predate that by hundreds of years. For example, in the 11th century B.C.E., King Solomon of Israel wrote: “All the rivers run into the sea, yet the sea is not full. To the place from which the rivers come, to there and from there they return again.”—Ecclesiastes 1:7, The Amplified Bible.

Likewise, about 800 B.C.E. the prophet Amos, a humble shepherd and farmworker, wrote that Jehovah is “the One calling for the waters of the sea, that he may pour them out upon the surface of the earth.” (Amos 5:8) Without using complex, technical language, both Solomon and Amos accurately described the water cycle, each from a slightly different perspective.

The Bible also speaks of God as “hanging the earth upon nothing,” or he “suspends earth in the void,” according to The New English Bible. (Job 26:7) In view of the knowledge available in 1600 B.C.E., roughly when those words were spoken, it would have taken a remarkable man to assert that a solid object can remain suspended in space without any physical support. As previously mentioned, Aristotle himself rejected the concept of a void, and he lived over 1,200 years later!

Does it not strike you as amazing that the Bible makes such accurate statements—even in the face of the erroneous yet seemingly commonsense perceptions of the day? To thinking people, this is one more evidence of the Bible’s divine inspiration. We are wise, therefore, not to be easily swayed by any teaching or theory that contradicts God’s Word. As history has repeatedly shown, human philosophies, even those of towering intellects, come and go, whereas “the saying of Jehovah endures forever.”—1 Peter 1:25.

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[Footnotes]

In the third century B.C.E., a Greek named Aristarchus of Samos put forth the hypothesis that the sun is at the center of the cosmos, but his ideas were dismissed in favor of Aristotle’s.

For an in-depth discussion on this topic, see chapter 15, “Why Do Many Accept Evolution?” in the book Life—How Did It Get Here? By Evolution or by Creation? published by Jehovah’s Witnesses.

The Protestants’ Attitude

  Leaders of the Protestant Reformation also railed against the sun-centered concept. They included Martin Luther (1483-1546), Philipp Melanchthon (1497-1560), and John Calvin (1509-64). Luther said of Copernicus: “This fool wishes to reverse the entire science of astronomy.”

  The Reformers based their argument on a literal interpretation of certain scriptures, such as the account in Joshua chapter 10 that mentions that the sun and the moon “kept motionless.”* Why did the Reformers take this stand? The book Galileo’s Mistake explains that while the Protestant Reformation broke the papal yoke, it failed to “shake the essential authority” of Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas, whose views were “accepted by Catholic and Protestant alike.”

[Footnote 2]

Scientifically speaking, we use incorrect terms when we refer to “sunrise” and “sunset.” But in everyday speech, these words are both acceptable and accurate, when we keep in mind our terrestrial perspective. Likewise, Joshua was not discussing astronomy; he was simply reporting events as he saw them.

[Credit Line 1]

From the book Servetus and Calvin, 1877

[Credit Line 2]

From the book A General History for Colleges and High Schools, 1900

[Credit Line 3]

From the book Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, 1855

After w05 4/1 pp. 4-7

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Preceding articles:

Where is the edge

The mythical conflict of science and Scripture (1)

The mythical conflict of science and Scripture (2)

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Additional reading:

  1. Living on the edge
  2. Is it “Wrong” to Believe that the Earth is a Sphere? Inclusive the first generation of Christadelphians their views
  3. A dialogue about the earth moving and spinning around the sun
  4. Cosmos creator and human destiny
  5. Everyday beauty

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In Dutch:

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  • Reason Illuminates Faith (in the Middle Ages) (thesoapboxguild.wordpress.com)
    The Genesis of Science: How the Christian Middle Ages Launched the Scientific Revolution, is incredibly readable for its length and depth, and is a credit to its author. I would highly recommend it to anyone interested in science and the Middle Ages. This series of blog posts is my attempt to gain a deeper appreciation for the issues Hannam raises, and to think alongside him as he dives into the lost world of medieval cosmology, medicine, mathematics, and philosophy.
  • Thomas Aquinas’s Works and Philosophies  As an Italian philosopher and (bestessaycheap.wordpress.com)
    Thomas led the Church towards a new expression of thinking. (MSN knowledge and Research). From the beginning he rebelled against a life previously go d sustain the stairs by his family, and pave a road towards success for himself.
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    Although many philosophies were derived from the bookworm thinker, Aristotle, he believed that it focused too na! rrowly on only when a few professions.
  • Galileo (hiddengrail.wordpress.com)
    At the University of Pisa, Galileo learned the physics of the Ancient Greek scientist, Aristotle. However, Galileo questioned the Aristotelian approach to physics. Aristotelians believed that heavier objects fall faster through a medium than lighter ones. Galileo eventually disproved this idea by asserting that all objects, regardless of their density, fall at the same rate in a vacuum.
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    Because Galileo supported the Copernican system, he was warned by Cardinal Bellarmine, under order of Pope Paul V, that he should not discuss or defend Copernican theories. In 1624, Galileo was assured by Pope Urban VIII that he could write about Copernican theory as long as he treated it as a mathematical proposition. However, with the printing of Galileo’s book, Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems, Galileo was called to Rome in 1633 to face the Inquisition again. Galileo was found guilty of heresy for his Dialogue, and was sent to his home near Florence where he was to be under house arrest for the remainder of his life. In 1638, the Inquisition allowed Galileo to move to his home in Florence, so that he could be closer to his doctors. By that time he was totally blind. In 1642, Galileo died at his home outside Florence.
  • Who are the most significant moral philosophers in the history of Western philosophy? (leiterreports.typepad.com)
    1. Aristotle  (Condorcet winner: wins contests with all other choices)
    2. Immanuel Kant  loses to Aristotle by 364–227
    3. Plato  loses to Aristotle by 414–168, loses to Immanuel Kant by 349–241
  • Unified Truth: Faith and Reason (str.typepad.com)
    Christianity’s engagement with non-Christian thought proceeds from the Christian belief that reason and faith are complementary, not oppositional. Thomas Aquinas’ synthesis of Aristotle and Christianity is a vital chapter in this engagement. His interaction with the philosophy of Aristotle demonstrates both the harmony of reason and faith and the oneness of truth, which are both central to the Christian intellectual tradition….
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    Greek philosophy is not compatible with Christian theology, except in a few areas. In Greek philosophy, the body is bad. In Christian theology, the body is good and will be redeemed eventually by God. Greek philosophy has brought us off course in our understanding of eschatology and other important things on many occasions in the church. I am a bit wary about some of what Thomas Aquinas believes because of that.
  • Galileo Galilei (Scientific revolution) (chrissanchez42.wordpress.com)
    Galileo eventually combined his laws of physics with the observations he made with his telescope to defend the heliocentric Copernican view of the universe and refute the Aristotelian system in his 1630 masterwork, Dialogue on the Two Chief Systems of the World. Upon its publication, he was censored by the Catholic Church and sentenced to house arrest in 1633.
  • Aristotle (megcannington.wordpress.com)
    Aristotle’s works shaped centuries of philosophy from Late Antiquity through the Renaissance, and even today continue to be studied with interest. He was definitely a  prodigious researcher and writer.
  • Knowledge Development History (zahrohtimy.wordpress.com)
    According to Bertrand Russell , among all history , nothing so difficult so astonish or explained besides the birth of civilization in Greece of a sudden. It has many elements of civilization there for thousands of years in Egypt and Mesopotamia. But certain elements have not been intact until then executing Yunanilah race .
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    Archimedes , considered one of the greatest mathematicians of all time , it is based on mathematical principles form temuannya lever, pulley system ( which didemonstrasikannya to attract a private boat only), and penak thread, that shows the planetarium model that can show movement of sun, moon, the planets, and constellations in the sky possibility. In the field of mathematics, the findings on the value of p ( phi ) over the previous approach of scholars. Of his works that is experimental, it is then dubbed as ” Mr. Experimental IPA ”.
  • What’s the record for the longest delayed apology? (chron.com)
    The longest delayed apology I can think of came from the Catholic Church, in 1992, to Galileo:Moving formally to rectify a wrong, Pope John Paul II acknowledged in a speech today that the Roman Catholic Church had erred in condemning Galileo 359 years ago for asserting that the Earth revolves around the Sun.
  • Thomas Aquinas on Wisdom by Robert M. Woods (facebookapostles.org)
    For Thomas, and most Philosophers until the modern world, Philosophy was essentially the “love of wisdom.” To engage in the the practice of philosophy was the faithful pursuit of wisdom wherever it might be found. The primary understanding of truth was saying of a thing what was and not saying of a thing what was not. In a larger sense, wisdom was an understanding of the truth of things. Philosophy was not navel gazing and not ideological manipulation, but it was a diligent quest to understanding the good, the true, and the beautiful.

Deuteronomy 4- Is God in Close Proximity?

Those who love יהוה Jehovah God should be clinging to יהוה our Elohim who has taught us laws and right-rulings. Those Words and commands יהוה our Elohim has given the world from one generation to the next we either can ignore or take them to be truthful and most important for our life. We should better guard them and follow them up, for this is our wisdom and our understanding.

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Additional reading:

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Tetragrammaton_at_RomanCatholic_Church_Saint-G...

  • It’s Not in You (cnhfaith.me)Maybe you’ve been telling yourself you can figure things out on your own. But, I don’t think so. If you could do it alone, you’d have done so by now. Although you might see it as weakness, the great­est act of strength is admitting that you don’t have the answers, trusting that God does, then turning to Him for help.
  • Treasure (presencenow.be)
    As a verb the word treasure means to cherish, to love, to hold closely, to value, to adore, to be devoted to. So what do I value? What do I cherish?
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    The more we believe deep within our hearts and souls, that God loves us, the more we treasure Him. We quit overvaluing lesser things and devote more and more of ourselves to Him. His love is that good.
  • Light, life and love in the Word (dailymedit.wordpress.com)
    To the limit that our lives patterns the word of God, that is the limit of the positive enduring results we see.
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    Everything originally emerges from the word of God, and everything else in our lives founded on the world will endure as God’s word is.  The word of God was recommended by Paul as the building block of our lives. The word of God is infused with the light, life and love of God.
  • Deuteronomy 13 (onethingonechapter.wordpress.com)
    Moses warns them about false prophets who promise omens and portents if only they followed other gods, and not the Lord their God. They were advised not to heed such prophets, as they were a test of their faithfulness to their God. Such prophets spoke treason against the Lord and were to be put to death.

    Similarly, anyone who enticed others to worship other gods, even family members were not to be followed and should be put to death. If they heard of towns whose inhabitants were worshipping other gods, they were to kill all of that town, destroying even their livestock. The spoils of the town were to be set on fire as a huge burnt offering to the Lord. They were to keep nothing from such towns.

  • Deuteronomy: A Commentary (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)
    Deuteronomy is much cited in the New Testament and has come to occupy an important place in the life and doctrine of the Christian church. It lifts up important wisdom themes such as humane treatment and benevolence to the poor and needy and is rich in theology, calling repeatedly on Israel to reject other gods and worship the Lord alone as holy.
  • in the Daily Verse: Deuteronomy 6:4 (faithfulprovisions.com) “The Lord is our God, the Lord alone.” that Lord is the Only One God: “Hear, O Yisra’ĕl: יהוה {Jehobvah} our Elohim, יהוה {Jehovah} is one!

In Christ Alone Devotions

It would be hard to believe that in the time of Moses there would be Deists. You know, a person who believes that God created the world and just left it by itself to run its natural course. It is like a scientist creating a robot and then setting it free in the world and never coming in contact with it again. However, today there may be remnants or even hybrid forms of that philosophy that was born in the 17th century. Lets see what God has to say about that.

“See, I have taught you statutes and judgments just as the Lord my God commanded me, that you should do thus in the land where you are entering to possess it. 6So keep and do them, for that is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples who will hear all these statutes…

View original post 333 more words

Accommodation of the Void

When the darkness was in the eternal past something happened which many human brains can not cope with. It goes beyond their human capacity to understand.

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There is only one major doctrine for humankind and that is the believe that there is a Supernatural Divine Being that is the Originator of everything.

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We loathe a void because we detest that what we can not or do not know and/or understand. the emptiness of the void seems so unreal and untouchable. That a void is considered something bad is strange, because the nothingness can also be pleasant or something very intriguing. The being without something is creating a possibility to get something which shall be filled or made un-empty or full, and fullness looks something great.

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When there is nothing there can not be energy, so those thinking there would have been nothing before the Big Bang should wonder how the mass could get moving and energy created out from nothing.

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You may say nothing in existence did not first come from a void. When the void is really only an empty space it also could become a vacant space. Void should not always be equal to ‘without force’ or to be ‘invalid’. When the ‘void’ has nothing it can also not have volition or the act or power of using its own will or choosing to make a decision or going into action. This interferes with the idea of the big Bang being the beginning of the universe.

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To say that the reason that there is a void created is because that which was there to begin with no longer fits is too easy to give way.

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It is our egotistical culture and our proud which makes that we want to be able to unravel the things in front of our eyes. We all think we can explain everything and have difficulty to believe the unbelievable or that what seems to be impossible to grasp. It is very easy to become upset by the ’emptiness’ that would be controlled by Something Higher than a human being. Most man consider man the most high and superior being. They think they can use freely all plants and animals and do whatever they want with them.

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Having to accept that there would be something before that Big Bang, which controlled already the things leading up to that Big Bang makes it very difficult for many people. should they then understand that there would be an other Ego that was capable to do what they only can dream of? The Something which is incomprehensible for man which has been there and is still there to fill the space of emptiness within, is the Something we get to know to be the All Being or Allah, the Only One God, Divine Creator.

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that divine Creator is the “I am that I am” the “Being that is”: “I am”. Opposite being “there to be”, we can find the human beings there not to present themselves for the other, but preferring having the others for his or her own being.  Ours is a culture that glorifies “having” instead of Being. It is true that when we are ‘Being’, we are not in need of ‘having’. this is what the “I Am” of the Scriptures tells us. He wants us to see how we should become void for the other. We do not have to empty us for ourselves but we do have to empty ourselves by giving to others and having the others and the Supreme Being filling us.

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The world may have come into being by a positive energy and now we have the counterpart where humankind creates lots of negative energy. Negative energy creating within us a feeling of lack, and when we have a feeling of lack. This shortcomings can get us back down in the well of darkness, back into the void of the world.

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But God does not want to see us in the darkness. He wants to see us in the light.

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Light was created to be mightier than the void. It should be the rays which can open our eyes and get us further on the path of experience and challenge to go forwards to better pastures in a realm which shall be better than this world.

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We may feel the things that we desire the most that we are still not yet ready for, we may look to others and think they do have it better than us. But we should look into our own hearts and find the light shining in there. When we are trying to fill the void with energy that is not the correct energy we are doing ourselves no big favours, so we better go looking for the right energy. The good force, which is provided in the universe for all to find and to grasp. We are not meant to fret over the void.

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We may not let us be blinded by those who would like to tell us that  there is nothing in the void (thereby making it a negative thing). We should look further than our nose, further than most people believe.

We may carry our past but should only take the best out of it and carry on going into the future, being aware that once the energy got flowing it shall not stop until the Person who started it going calls it to stop.

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Though that Being Who started all the energy going is not willing to have it stopping; He promised that whatever turbulence there would come, once in the time there shall come a moment when there would be another Big Bang, namely the Third World War or Armageddon, and then the end would come for this world system. Then the promised Saviour will take over and shall take care that the right persons with the right energy shall be able to continue their path to the Kingdom of God, the World of the First and Foremost Divine Creator.

Then we shall be able to speak of the First World and the New World. Let us be ready to be there in the right place on the right time to enter that New World.

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Preceding articles:

Nothingness

Blackness, nothingness, something, void

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Read also:

  1. The Origin of Life on Earth: Creation or Evolution?
  2. Two states of existence before God
  3. A viewpoint on creation
  4. The World framed by the Word of God
  5. Creator and Blogger God 1 Emptiness and mouvement
  6. The Divine name of the Creator
  7. Cosmos creator and human destiny
  8. Creation of the earth out of something
  9. Creation gift of God
  10. Creation and the Bible
  11. God, Creation and the Bible Hope
  12. A viewpoint on creation
  13. Without God no purpose, no goal, no hope
  14. Heed of the Saviour
  15. Darkness, light, burning fire, Truth and people in it
  16. Kingdom of God what will it be like

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  • Creation Myth Flash Fiction (thewriterandpoet.wordpress.com)
    While, the splitting of the molecule caused a white flash of pure spectral light to echo across the once barren cosmos. Over time, this sonic texture has deepened in tone as the acoustics sent concussive waves across the once silent void in all directions. Sending the message of life from the initial source of, The Big Bang.
  • Luminous Pathogenesis (syntaxsinner.wordpress.com)
    They say matter was developed, that matter is a slow mode of energy and there is spoken a presence of cooresponding voids and forms.
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    The Creationist expounds to say the initial phase is not described and I will say it iS in fact in Genesis 1, if you will bear with me, I will exclude religiousity to focus on physics only but I will mention spirit as well as God. They say, whether they Claim or not what modern science confirms. The Earth (or the idea of it was not formed and void and the spirit was over the waters.
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    Having a spirit who does not interfere, only play things about, would be helpful. I’d say essential to make life, which, small as biological things are require written DNA instructions and order they cannot write onto themselves.
  • God is One, Void is None (onesadhaka.wordpress.com)
    The theists tell me that behind and within everything is Divine Light. The Buddhists tell me that behind and within everything is void. They both claim this is the only side of the coin. They both tell me that their cosmology of an incomplete Tao is valid. Could it be possible that both views are true?There can be no light without dark. There can be no dark without light. Each highlights the other, provides a contrast in which the other can be experienced and perceived. Each provides balance to the other.
  • Bible Studies – Let Us Start From the Beginning (grizzersbiblethoughts.wordpress.com)
    Over the millennium, numerous religious, philosophical, theoretical, metaphysical and mystic explanations have been fronted to explain creation. Creation stories abound in all cultures, including, but not limited to the Hopi Indians, ancient Babylonia, Mesopotamia, the Norse and the ancient Hebrews, to name a few. (For more detail regarding these stories, I suggest the web site of the University of Georgia and look for an article titled Creation Stories). As a few examples, I offer the Norse belief and one pre-Christian era belief.
  • Emptiness – Neither Existence Nor Voidness (promienie.net)
    “Emptiness” was not created by the Lord Buddha, as it simply reflects the “true reality” of all worldly phenomena. Even if the Lord Buddha did not appear in this world, this phenomenon of “Emptiness” still continues to exists; just like the fact that, even though there might not have scientific proofs from scientists before, the salt element continues to exist in sea water all the time.
  • Life Expectations (roseseverydaythoughts.wordpress.com)
    Isn’t it funny how when we’re younger all we dream about is being older? Or the fact that once we aren’t allowed something, we automatically want it? I don’t understand the human brain, hell I don’t think I’ve met someone who does… However, what i’m trying to say is that maybe we need to stop looking at things from our point of view and step out of the shell into somebody else’s.
    +
    Everything you do all adds up to the path you’re supposed to be on, whether or not you know it at the time. So be that crazy bitch that everyone hates for a week or two, or even a year… Do whatever you have to do to get rid of that feeling, and to finally come to a realization a year down the road. As cheesy as it is to say, it’ll be worth in the end.
  • How Close Are We To Building A Full-Fledged Cyborg? (gizmodo.com.au)
    The dream of the cyborg is coming true at an exhilarating rate. As humans gets better and better at making machines, we keep attaching those machines to our bodies to make ourselves better humans. It seems at times that the only question left is if we can put a human brain in a robotic frame. Actually, it’s not a matter of if. It’s a matter of when.
  • Theorums (trolldens.blogspot.com)
    At any rate when you read articles that begin with “during the big bang” or “the KT extinction event caused” never forget they are theories only.
  • What Caused the Big Bang? A Master Mason and Knight Templar Offers a Unique New Approach to Multiverse Cosmology (prweb.com)
    If you have no use for the creation story in the Bible and likewise find the claim that the Big Bang just ‘spontaneously happened’ to be unconvincing, then you may indeed like what my book has to offer.
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    “My book makes the case that Disunification explains E=MC², why energy and matter are convertible. Likewise, Disunification explains why Consciousness and Identity are convertible in our universe,” Augustine said. “I introduce Disunification Cosmology in my book and discuss it on my cosmology blog.”When you understand that Consciousness and Identity are convertible, your spiritual understanding explodes. You no longer need any form of religion, belief, doctrine, or even a conventional identity,” Augustine stated. “My work can expand a person beyond their boundaries and into a new and higher level of Consciousness and spiritual understanding. This is why my subtitle of my book is ‘Consciousness and Enlightenment in the Internet Age and Beyond.'”
  • Trying to Fill a Void (michaelcupo40.wordpress.com)
    The whole nature of the Conditioned Mind Patterns is to satisfy an I Self that feels a sense of lack; a lack that it will try to fill, one way or another. This lack is the energy that causes the Conditioned Mind Pattern to be formed. It was this sense of lack that was controlling my reactions. I have come to understand that flare ups occur because our ego, operating through our Conditioned Mind Patterns, doesn’t allow us to flow with the energy of life. So it either erupts in the present or is stored, waiting for a future trigger and flare up to occur.

The Mana'o Blog

THE VOID

The Void. Ugh!

Even thinking about it in terms that can be thought as even being semi-friendly makes a lot of our brains itch. We loathe a void. A void means that we are empty of something and that the void demands to be filled. What we are not realizing is that there is a reason for the void and once it is that we understand the reason, there will be no more void. Too many of us are not accepting this. Too many people believe that a void is a bad thing when in reality it is only a neutral thing and doesn’t carry any negative energy until we choose to believe that it is something other than what it truly is, which is merely and only a void.

Nothing in existence did not first come from a void. A void is really only an empty space…

View original post 1,348 more words

Blackness, nothingness, something, void

Void and darkness

Darkness. Nothingness.

Void, so there was and there is ….. complexity. Empty spaces make up void, but than there is something to make the spaces in between. Then there is density, length, with, depth, hight … space. When there are periodic fluctuations in the density of the visible baryonic matter of the universe, this means there is a stand still, a movement, but caused by what? If caused by acoustic waves then there would be sound and movement in space. If it would come to an explosion, call it Big Bang, than still it had to exist in the early universe.

Cosmology

First baryon octet

First baryon octet (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Baryon acoustic oscillations (BAO) may provide a “standard ruler” for length scale in cosmology. does it help us to understand more about the nature of dark energy (which causes the apparent slight acceleration of the expansion of the universe) by constraining cosmological parameters? When there was a hot, dense plasma of electrons and baryons (protons and neutrons) then those also had to come into being.when there would have come overdensity gravitationally attracting matter towards it, the heat of photon-matter interactions creating a large amount of outward pressure, then there should have been something like emptiness and matter, something to cause limitness or presser on something else.. Then counteracting forces of gravity and pressure could create oscillations, analogous to sound waves created in air by pressure differences.

Collapses of masses, Big Bang and billion of years

Voids are believed to have been formed by baryon acoustic oscillations in the Big Bang—collapses of mass followed by implosions of the compressed baryonic matter. Starting from initially small anisotropies due to quantum fluctuations in the early Universe, the anisotropies grew larger in scale over time. Regions of higher density collapsed more rapidly under gravity, eventually resulting in the large-scale, foam-like structure or “cosmic web” of voids and galaxy filaments seen today.

When, according to scientists, approximately 13.798 ± 0.037 billion years ago the Universe was in an extremely hot and dense state and began expanding rapidly to cool down sufficiently to allow energy to be converted into various subatomic particles, including protons, neutrons, and electrons, there should have been all these elements. Subatomic particles, present in the nucleus of each atom having a mutual electromagnetic repulsion stronger than the attraction of the nuclear force, should still then have something to bring in force.

Books of man against books of Supreme Being

The Big Book made up of 66 books, brought together by men, beings of flesh and blood, got ideas in it which came from somewhere and bothered their brains. It let them think and handle, wondering about their being or not being, life and death. Being nothing, would it be being part of that void?

So that “Void” was considered part of the beginning.

“And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness [was] upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” (Genesis 1:2 AV)

Spirit, Space and Earth

Mass map of Abell 1689.

Mass map of Abell 1689. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Space and Earth being without form, part of the so called nothingness, which was something not seen, because darkness did not reveal it,  bottomless emptiness, an inky blackness. God’s Spirit brooded like a bird above the watery abyss, so there was water to hover over.

“And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.” (Genesis 1:3 AV)

Then there was a God, a Being, a Spirit, not man not woman, not flesh, not blood. darkness was elevated so there was light.

Fluids and Being

When there was water, there was space or volume, the volume of void-space (such as fluids). Having darkness and light makes radiation and reflection. To have reflection there has to be material and volume of solids. Volume change tendency control. If void ratio is high (loose soils) voids in a soil skeleton tend to minimize under loading – adjacent particles contract. The opposite situation, i.e. when void ratio is relatively small (dense soils), indicates that the volume of the soil is vulnerable to increase under loading – particles dilate.

The Void also can denote excretion, the process by which waste products of metabolism and other non-useful materials are eliminated from an organism. In vertebrates this is primarily carried out by the lungs, kidneys and skin. The void as such could be the part of the being, the breathing or passage of air, the composure of the things, be it man or animal or plant.

Dependant Independence

Elementary particles need not be statistically independent and everything could move around without the other but would interfere with the other. Einstein observed that the exchange of radiation between bodies should involve an exchange of mass; light quanta have mass exactly as do ordinary molecules. In his derivation of this result, Einstein speaks about a “light complex,” an entirely classical concept, rather than about a light quantum. When, after Bose’s work, he did attribute corpuscular properties to light quanta, he distinguished clearly between photons (a word he did not use), zero rest mass bosons (another word introduced later) whose number need not be conserved; and massive bosons, whose number must be conserved. His prediction of a condensed state for massive bosons (see Einstein, 1925), now called a Bose-Einstein condensate, offered the first theoretical explanation of a transition between two phases of a system. The prediction was spectacularly confirmed some seventy years later, winning its discoverers the 2001 Nobel prize in physics.

A light ray divides itself, but a light quantum cannot divide without a change of frequency” (Einstein to H. A. Lorentz, 23 May 1909, Collected Papers, vol. 5, p. 193).

Originator of Big Bang

The Big Bang era of the universe, presented as...

The Big Bang era ofthe universe, presented as a manifold in two dimensions (1-space and

time); the shape is right (approximately), but it’s not to scale. (Photo

credit: Wikipedia)

For those saying because there was a Big Bang, so there could not be a Creator is like having the empty peace of paper, getting sings or drawings on its own, without someone using a pen, his hand or his brains to bring something on the paper.

The Big Bang does not contradict anything which is written in the Book of Books, the Bible or Holy Scriptures, which is inspired and infallible the Word of that Maker, the Being behind it all.

The void got formed.

Philosophers

A pagan Greek philosopher, Proclus, called the Successor, had written a massive polemical commentary explicitly criticizing the Biblical description of the universe and its origin, on the grounds that it was scientifically unsupportable. Philoponus, also known as John the Grammarian or John of Alexandria, was a Christian and Aristotelian commentator and the author of a considerable number of philosophical treatises and theological works, destroyed Proclus’ arguments in his reply, demonstrating the many flaws in Proclus’ work. {Wilderberg, ‘John Philoponus’, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.}
He also wrote numerous commentaries on Aristotle’s works which identified their errors, using the Biblical cosmology as his tool. {John McKenna, article ‘John Philoponus, Sixth Century Alexandrian Grammarian, Christian Theologian and Scientific Philosopher’, Quodlibet Journal, Volume 5, Number 1, January, 2003.}

Cosmology, Philosophy and Science

This breakthrough was instrumental in the formation of Western science as we know it. Philoponus’ work was used by later scientific investigators such as such as Bonaventure, Gersonides, Buridan, Oresme, Gianfrancesco Pico della Mirandola, Galileo Galilei, and Isaac Newton, all of whom made significant scientific progress as a result.

Philoponus had defended the Christian cosmology, deriving powerful arguments from observations of the universe that it must have had a beginning, and that it was finite in duration. He single-handedly debunked the greatest pagan philosopher and cosmologist in recorded history (Aristotle), as well as burying Proclus’ criticism of the Christian cosmology.

Around 550 Philoponus wrote a theological work On the Creation of the World as a commentary on the Bible’s story of creation using the insights of Greek philosophers and Basil the Great. In this work he transfers his theory of impetus to the motion of the planets, whereas Aristotle had proposed different explanations for the motion of heavenly bodies and for earthly projectiles. Thus Philoponus’ theological work is recognized in the history of science as the first attempt at a unified theory of dynamics. Another of his major theological concerns was to argue that all material objects were brought into being by God (Arbiter, 52A-B).

Later Jewish and Christian cosmologists throughout the medieval era made similar arguments, based on the same observations. Christian scientists from Francis Bacon to Isaac Newton all understood this, for centuries.

To be or not to be true

Incredibly, some of the greatest 20th century scientists such as the son of a Somerset Quaker, Arthur Henry Eddington and Einstein claimed it could not be true (apparently Einstein later said it was possibly the greatest error in his career). Eddington even admitted he didn’t want it to be true, for philosophical reasons. [9] It was only recently that scientific evidence for the ‘Big Bang’ proved that the universe did indeed have a beginning and would have an end, contrary to what many scientists had believed.

The Bible did not want to give an exact picture of who everything came into being but does contain information which has historically been of considerable scientific value.

Biblical concept of the universe

WMAP image of the (extremely tiny) anisotropie...

WMAP image of the (extremely tiny) anisotropies in the cosmic background radiation (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Unlike every other Ancient Near East cosmology, the Bible describes the universe in naturalistic terms. The sun, moon, and stars are inanimate objects rather than gods, the universe was not created from the recycled body parts of divine beings, and the universe operates according to fixed laws. Early Jewish and Christian commentators understood that nature is regular and orderly, since everything in nature takes place according to fixed laws which God has instituted, which never change.

Sirach chapter 16, verses 26-28, 180-175 BCE.

‘When the Lord created his works from the beginning, and, in making them determined their boundaries, he arranged his works in an eternal order, and their dominion for all generations. They neither hunger not grow weary, and they do not abandon their tasks. They do not crowd one another, and they never disobey his word.’

Basil of Caesarea, ‘Hexamaron’, chapter 5, sections 10, 370 CE.

‘It is this command which, still at this day, is imposed on the earth and, in the course of each year, displays all the strength of its power to produce herbs, seeds, and trees. Like tops, which after the first impulse continue their evolutions, turning upon themselves, when once fixed in their center; thus nature, receiving the impulse of this first command, follows without interruption the course of ages until the consummation of all things.’

This concept of the universe, which we take for granted, was revolutionary in the Ancient Near East and was not even approached by the Greeks until around the 4th century BCE. In fact the inadequacy of Greek science led to a complete dead end.

Concept of Origin and Originator

John McKenna, article ‘John Philoponus, Sixth Century Alexandrian Grammarian, Christian Theologian and Scientific Philosopher’, Quodlibet Journal, Volume 5, Number 1, January 2003.

‘The Greek concept of God caused a deep confusion between cosmology and theology and was a dead-end to science, as we know it in our time.’

Unable to free itself completely from mythology, Greek science finally stagnated and failed to advance any further.

Wilderberg, ‘John Philoponus’, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

‘Reading Philoponus as well as the writings of his great adversary Simplicius, one gets the sense that in the 6th century CE, traditional pagan Greek learning had become desperately insular.’

Inheritance

Western science was not revived until the 6th century CE Christian philosopher John Philoponus challenged the pagan cosmology inherited from the Greeks.

Dan Graves, ‘Aristotle’s Earliest Creationist Critic’, 1998.

‘A widespread religion of Philoponus’s time was pantheism, a belief system that sees God as equivalent to nature. In his rejection of this, Philoponus argued that the Creator transcends nature rather than being within it. Having been created, nature exists without constant intervention by God. This radical conception shocked the pagans who believed the gods were imbedded within the material universe.’

Religious experience versus scientific experience

Eddington argued from a novel interpretation of positivism that religious experience and scientific experience were equally valid parts of human life, but that neither could prove any particular sectarian dogma. This ecumenical, reassuring position was quite popular in the interwar period with the last surge of liberal theology, but became less relevant with the death of that movement around World War II.

Einstein loved to discuss scientific problems with friends, but he was, fundamentally a “horse for single harness.” His belief in strict causality was closely related to his profound belief in the harmony of nature, which did not have to exclude a Supernatural Hand behind it all.

Most of the people do want to look at the universe rationally, in mathematical terms, and by doing so they often become blind for the mystical elemenents we as human beings can not understand. It is not because we can not cope with the matter that we do have to cease to evoke a deep — one might say, religious — feeling of admiration in the Power behind all science.

“The most incomprehensible thing about the world,” Einstein once wrote, “is that it is comprehensible.”

Free inventive capacity of human mind

To discover the basic laws and concepts of nature we can either try to find knowledge by scientist, whose findings after some years may become outdated and not so right as people thought after, first arguing a lot.

Einstein argued that while we learn certain features of the world from experience, the free inventive capacity of the human mind is required to formulate physical theories. There is no logical link between the world of experience and the world of theory. Once a theory has been formulated, however, it must be “simple” (or, perhaps, “esthetically pleasing”) and agree with experiment. One such esthetically pleasing and fully confirmed theory is the special theory of relativity. There was the Galilean invariance or Galilean relativity that states that the laws of motion are the same in all inertial frames. Galileo Galilei first described this principle in 1632 in his Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems using the example of a ship travelling at constant velocity, without rocking, on a smooth sea; any observer doing experiments below the deck would not be able to tell whether the ship was moving or stationary. The fact that the Earth orbits around the sun at approximately 30 km/s offers a somewhat more dramatic example, though it is technically not an inertial reference frame.

We might also adhere that there exists an absolute space, in which Newton’s laws are true, an inertial frame as a reference frame in relative uniform motion to absolute space where all inertial frames share a universal time. {Newtonian relativity}

If it be a relativity generalising special relativity and Newton’s law of universal gravitation, providing a unified description of gravity as a geometric property of space and time, or spacetime we in a moment of time can appear or dispensary, be or not be.  In the curvature of space-time we shall not be able to avoid the energy and momentum of whatever matter and radiation are present.

Subtle but not malicious

When Einstein was informed of D.C. Miller’s experiments, which seemed to contradict the special theory by demanding the reinstatement of the ether, he expressed his belief in the spuriousness of Miller’s results—and therefore in the harmoniousness of nature—with another of his famous aphorisms, “God is subtle, but he is not malicious.”

This frequent use of God’s name in Einstein’s speeches and writings provides us with a feeling for his religious convictions. He once stated explicitly,

“I believe in Spinoza’s God who reveals himself in the harmony of all being, not in a God who concerns himself with the fate and actions of men.”

It is not difficult to see that this credo is consistent with his statement that the

“less knowledge a scholar possesses, the farther he feels from God. But the greater his knowledge, the nearer is his approach to God.”

This should let us made to think about our position to the Divine Creator who provide human beings with brains so that they can think and have wisdom. Since Einstein’s God manifested Himself in the harmony of the universe, there could be no conflict between religion and science for Einstein. As Christians we should believe the Word of God and notice that many things written in it were first taught otherwise by man. Lots of people twisted words and told people they were in the Scriptures, but that ordinary people could not understand them. Many points of believe were created, people had to accept them, or they would be tortured and even be killed for other beliefs. The major points in this are that the world would be there in one go like we see it today, that the earth would be a flat surface, that God would be three in one (the Holy Trinity), that Jesus was God and that Jesus existed already at the time of the creation.

Looking into matters, taking time to study and for investigation

We should look into all matters, investigate them and make the right choices. The Creator provided the universe, placed human beings, plants and animals in it and gave guidance in His Word, to help them find their way. each of us has to use their brains to search, look for and to experiment. Each of us has also either to hear to the world or to see the Magnificent Hand of God and the Beautiful Works of God, which work faith.

Illustration of the expansion of the Universe ...

Illustration of the expansion of the Universe after the Big bang. In Bulgarian. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Einstein’s theory implies the existence of black holes — regions of space in which space and time are distorted in such a way that nothing, not even light, can escape — as an end-state for massive stars. There is ample evidence that the intense radiation emitted by certain kinds of astronomical objects is due to black holes; for example, microquasars and active galactic nuclei result from the presence of stellar black holes and black holes of a much more massive type, respectively. In time people will find out more about it. Many previous scientific findings may be considered mistaken. those faulty teachings where once taken as the truth and preferred above the Truth of God. We should know better and look for truth in the Bible, the Word of God. Studying that word we should come to conclusions and take the right choices doing the job god wants us to do.

No void anymore

We can have no void, having no members or examples. Today the void is gone. We live in the world not inhabited any more and is not deserted. Being part of those living elements of the universe, we can breath and move and fulfil duties.

When Einstein lay dying he could truly utter, as he did,

“Here on earth I have done my job.”

Shall we be able to say at the end of our life the same thing?

It would be difficult to find a more suitable epitaph than the words Einstein himself used in characterizing his life:

“God is inexorable in the way He has allotted His gifts. He gave me the stubbornness of a mule and nothing else; really, He also gave me a keen scent.”

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Additional notes:

  1. Proclus Lycaeus was a Greek Neoplatonist philosopher, one of the last major Classical philosophers who set forth one of the most elaborate and fully developed systems of Neoplatonism. He stands near the end of the classical development of philosophy, and was very influential on Western medieval philosophy (Greek and Latin) as well as Islamic thought.
  2. The biblical findings and theological ideas of John the Grammarian or John of Alexandria broke from the Aristotelian-Neoplatonic tradition, questioning methodology and eventually leading to empiricism in the natural sciences. His doctrine on Christ’s duality, according to which in Christ remain two united substances, united but divided, is analogous to the union of the soul and body in human beings and coincides with the miaphysite school of thought.
    He was posthumously condemned as a heretic by the Orthodox Church in 680-81 because of what was perceived of as a tritheistic interpretation of the Trinity.
  3. Arthur Henry Eddington was the first interpreter of Einstein’s relativity theory in English, and made his own contributions to its development; and he formulated relationships between all the principal constants of nature, attempting a vast synthesis in his provocative but uncompleted Fundamental Theory.

Please do find:

  1. The professor, God, Faith and the student
  2. The Origin of Life on Earth: Creation or Evolution?
  3. God of gods
  4. The Divine name of the Creator
  5. Two states of existence before God
  6. A viewpoint on creation
  7. The World framed by the Word of God
  8. Creator and Blogger God 1 Emptiness and mouvement
  9. Creator and Blogger God 3 Lesson and solution
  10. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #3 Voice of God #1 Creator and His Prophets
  11. Cosmos creator and human destiny
  12. Creation of the earth out of something
  13. Creation gift of God
  14. Creation and the Bible
  15. God, Creation and the Bible Hope
  16. A viewpoint on creation
  17. Man made life
  18. The manager and Word of God
  19. Newton did not believe in a Trinity
  20. Trinity: A False Doctrine of a False Church
  21. God works faith
  22. Without God no purpose, no goal, no hope
  23. Finish each day and be done with it

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  • Nothingness (coggj22.wordpress.com)
    When you ask people about how life started, or even how the entire universe came into fruition, their answer would basically boil down into two categories – an answer which is derived from scientific explanations and another which involves an application of faith, a response born of their religion. In the scientific field, we see theories which seek to explain the origin of the universe such as the big bang theory, as well as ideas which aim to resolve the issue of how humans were formed such as Charles Darwin’s Origin of the Species.
  • Why Does The World Exist? (rationaloptimist.wordpress.com)
    In writing previously about Lawrence Krauss’s book, A Universe From Nothing: Why is There Something Rather Than Nothing? I called this the greatest question. Comes now Jim Holt’s book, Why Does the World Exist? Whereas Krauss’s was basically a physics book, Holt’s is mainly philosophical. At the heart of the problem is what nothingness means (as the alternative to the Universe we’ve got, full of stuff). Holt spends much time on this, discussing the plausibility of nothingness via a process of subtraction from our cosmos of somethingness. Meantime Krauss described nothingness in such a way that applying physics to it could get you a Big Bang; he talks a lot about field theory and suchlike. imagesBut the trouble is that religious apologists can always say their nothingness (not even fields) is deeper than yours and requires a god to get something going.
  • Creation Myth Flash Fiction (thewriterandpoet.wordpress.com)
    According to the Standard Model of particle physics, the universe should be empty. Matter and antimatter, which are identical except for their opposite electric charges, seem to be produced in equal parts during particle interactions and decays. However, matter and antimatter instantly annihilate each other upon contact, and so equal amounts of each would have meant a wholesale annihilation of both shortly after the Big Bang. The existence of galaxies, planets and people illustrates that somehow, a small surplus of matter survived this canceling process. If that hadn’t happened, “the universe would be void,” Schönert said. “It would be very, very boring for us, who would not exist.”
  • Accommodation of the Void (themanaoblog.wordpress.com)
    Even thinking about it in terms that can be thought as even being semi-friendly makes a lot of our brains itch. We loathe a void. A void means that we are empty of something and that the void demands to be filled. What we are not realizing is that there is a reason for the void and once it is that we understand the reason, there will be no more void. Too many of us are not accepting this. Too many people believe that a void is a bad thing when in reality it is only a neutral thing and doesn’t carry any negative energy until we choose to believe that it is something other than what it truly is, which is merely and only a void.Nothing in existence did not first come from a void. A void is really only an empty space that is waiting for the right and matching energy to come through to it and fill it. The reason that there is a void created is because that which was there to begin with no longer fits and neither does the energy that used to be there.
  • Stephen Hawking’s Big Ideas Made Simple (ritholtz.com)
    No time to read Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time? In just two and a half minutes, Alok Jha explains why black holes are doomed to shrink into nothingness then explode with the energy of a million nuclear bombs, and rewinds to the big bang and the origin of the universe?
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    Nice story, but many astrophysicists do not accept this theory of universal birth.
  • [CEA] Constraints on Large-Scale Dark Acoustic Oscillations from Cosmology (arxiver.wordpress.com)
    If all or a fraction of the dark matter (DM) were coupled to a bath of dark radiation (DR) in the early Universe we expect the combined DM-DR system to give rise to acoustic oscillations of the dark matter until it decouples from the DR. Much like the standard baryon acoustic oscillations, these dark acoustic oscillations (DAO) imprint a characteristic scale, the sound horizon of dark matter, on the matter power spectrum.
  • Higgs boson may have played a role in dark matter creation (vr-zone.com)
    The most famous subatomic particle in recent years is no doubt the Higgs boson, which is responsible for defining the mass of particles. Now scientists believe it may also have an important role in the creation of dark and baryonic matter in the early universe. It may also have something to do with the asymmetry between antimatter and matter particles.The concept of asymmetry involves the idea that while the big bang should have produced equal amounts of matter and anti-matter, it didn’t. If matter and anti-matter had been created in equal amounts, they should then have eliminated each other, leaving… nothing. Of course, that’s not what happened; there was a slight excess of matter, meaning some was left over after all the anti-matter had been eliminated. That matter is what makes up our universe.
  • The impact of baryonic processes on the two-point correlation functions of galaxies, subhaloes and matter [CEA] (arxiver.wordpress.com)
    The observed clustering of galaxies and the cross-correlation of galaxies and mass (a measure of galaxy-galaxy lensing) provide important constraints on both cosmology and models of galaxy formation. Even though the dissipation, and more importantly the feedback processes associated with galaxy formation are thought to affect the distribution of matter, essentially all models used to predict clustering data are based on dark matter only simulations.
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    We conclude that predictions for galaxy-galaxy and galaxy-mass clustering from models based on dark matter only simulations will have errors greater than 10% on sub-Mpc scales, unless the simulation results are modified to correctly account for the effects of baryons on the distributions of mass and satellites.
  • Using the topology of large-scale structure in the WiggleZ Dark Energy Survey as a cosmological standard ruler [CEA] (arxiver.wordpress.com)
    The Minkowski functionals are a set of statistics which completely describe the topological nature of each isodensity surface within the field, as a function of the density value.