This course examines the nature of both science and religion and attempts to explore the possible relationships between them. The primary purpose is to dispel the popular myth that science and religion are entrenched in a never-ending conflict. As a result, this course argues that if the limits of both science and religion are respected, then their relationship can be complementary.
Topics include: Science and Religion Categories and Foundational Principles, Definitions of Science and Religion, Science-Religion Models and Relationships, Intelligent Design and Natural Revelation, the Galileo Affair, Geology and Noah’s Flood, Evolution and Darwin’s Religious Beliefs, the Modern “Evolution” vs. “Creation” Debate, the Problem of Evil, and Interpretations of the Biblical Accounts of Origins in Genesis 1-11.
The course employs a Constructive Teaching Style in order that students can develop their personal views on the relationship between science and religion and on each of the topics listed above.
St. Joseph's College is a Catholic, undergraduate, liberal arts college on the University of Alberta campus. It is an independent institution that is affiliated with the University of Alberta.
From the lesson
Models on the Relationships between Science & Religion
This is one of the most important weeks in the course. We outline the Science and Religion models of two of the founding members of this new academic discipline. Their models each include four different relationships between Science and Religion. John Haught’s model incorporates the relationships of Conflict, Contrast, Contact, and Confirmation. Ian Barbour has Conflict, Independence, Dialogue, and Integration relationships in his model. During this week, we will consider the hermeneutical principle of Historical Criticism. This is the notion that ancient Near Eastern motifs of origins—De Novo Creation, Lost Idyllic Age, Great Flood, and Tribal Formation—have been re-cycled and re-interpreted in the biblical accounts of origins (Genesis 1-11).