Religious Disagreements vs. Scientific Disagreements

In this post, I compare religious disagreements vs. scientific disagreements and how I believe them to be different. In the case of religious disagreements, there truly is no “correct answer.” For instance, as Hick concludes in “The Problem of Evil,” one can neither prove nor disprove the existence of God (pg. 47). Therefore, I believe that one can be rationally justified in believing God exists but one can also be rationally justified in believing God doesn’t exist. How do we know who is correct? The simple answer is we don’t. In the contrary, I believe that in the case of scientific disagreements, there is a “correct answer.” For instance, let’s consider the issue of global warming. Assume we have one individual who believes global warming exists and another who does not believe so. It is easily provable that global warming does exist and is a growing problem by examining environmental patterns such as the melting of glaciers in the northern and southern poles of the Earth over time. In such an instance, we have physical proof of global warming and its effects on our planet, and thus we can conclude that there is a correct answer to this scientific disagreement. As Richard Feldman put it in his article, “if one side had it right, then the other had it wrong” (pg. 199).

To summarize, I believe that religious disagreements lead to two opposing viewpoints, each rationally justifiable in its own rights, with no one viewpoint being superior to the other. On the other hand, scientific disagreements have a clearly correct viewpoint, provable by physical evidence. This, I feel, is the difference between religious and scientific disagreements.