[Published in the Indiana Daily Student
, Wed. Oct 21, 2009. I know I should have posted this sooner, but I have been very busy with wedding planning and the event described at the end of the letter.]
Science and Religion Can Work Together
Evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins, in his lecture at IU on Oct.12, presented a strong and unflinching defense of biological evolution. He also relentlessly attacked religious faith of any kind, particularly Christianity and Islam, calling the biblical book of Genesis the “scribblings of goat herders.” During Dawkins’ talk, Christians outside the auditorium handed out cards insisting that evolution is incompatible with the Bible.
Both views seemed to agree that we must choose between acceptance of legitimate scientific evidence and sincere faith. For those of us who are professional scholars and practicing Christians, this false choice is personally frustrating and cultivates potently corrosive distrust within our society. It robs far too many young Christians of the ability to realize their potential for exploring our universe and too many scholars of the redemptive power God offers for their lives and their universities.
We believe there should be no conflict between science and faith, because God is the author of both. We believe that Christians can and should explore the natural world and have the courage to accept that evolution is the best scientific explanation of evidence spanning billions of years into the past and within our own DNA.
To this end, we hope to engage in the spirit of IU’s Themester by hosting an academic discussion, open to all who are interested, with panelists who are Christians and scholars, and who wish to build trust between the academy and Christianity.Please join us at 7pm Nov. 12 in the Indiana Memorial Union Dogwood Room for a panel discussion in response to the question “Can a biologist trust an evangelical Christian?” For more information visit http://iugfm.blogspot.com/. We hope an honest and communal search for truth can evolve out of the false choice between science and faith.
Luke Corwin, postdoctoral fellow, Physics
Scott Lamanna, doctoral candidate, Spanish
Kerilyn Harkaway, doctoral student, English and religious studies
For the IV Graduate & Faculty Ministry at IU