Science, Religion and Authority: Lessons from the Galileo Affair

By Richard J. Blackwell | Go to book overview

SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AUTHORITY: LESSONS FROM THE GALILEO AFFAIR

Introduction: An Unstable History

Throughout its long history Christianity has been involved in something like a love-hate relationship with science, 1 or with natural reason as distinct from religious faith, to use the older terminology. There have been times when Christianity has engaged science with great warmth and benefit, usually first in the thinking of an outstandingly creative mind, for example, the synthesis between classical Aristotelian science and Christian theology produced by Thomas Aquinas, who is commemorated in this lecture series. Conversely, science has also benefitted greatly by deriving some of its basic concepts from religious sources. For example, in the seventeenth century the mediaeval conviction that the universe is fundamentally rational gave modern science its initial self-confidence. 2 And the conservation laws in physics, which were introduced at that same time, were originally suggested by the

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Science, Religion and Authority: Lessons from the Galileo Affair
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 3
  • Prefatory 5
  • Contents 9
  • Introduction - An Unstable History 11
  • Concluding Remarks 54
  • Notes 59
  • The Aquinas Lectures Published by the Marquette University Press Milwaukee Wi 53201-1881 Usa 67
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