Science and humanity : a humane philosophy of science and religion /

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Bibliographic Details
Author / Creator:Steane, Andrew M., author.
Edition:First edition.
Imprint:Oxford, United Kingdom : Oxford University Press, 2018.
Description:x, 289 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
Subject:Religion and science.
Science -- Philosophy.
Humanity -- Philosophy.
Religion and science
Science -- Philosophy
Format: Print Book
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Notes:Includes bibliographical references (pages 281-284) and index.
Summary:Andrew Steane reconfigures the public understanding of science, by drawing on a deep knowledge of physics and by bringing in mainstream philosophy of science. Science is a beautiful, multi-lingual network of ideas; it is not a ladder in which ideas at one level make those at another level redundant. In view of this, we can judge that the natural world is not so much a machine as a meeting-place. In particular, people can only be correctly understood by meeting with them at the level of their entire personhood, in a reciprocal, respectful engagement as one person to another. Steane shows that Darwinian evolution does not overturn this but rather is the process whereby such truths came to be discovered and expressed in the world. From here the argument moves towards other aspects of human life. Our sense of value requires from us a response which is not altogether the same as following logical argument. This points us towards what religion in its good forms can express. A reply to a major argument of David Hume, and a related one of Richard Dawkins, is given. The book finishes with some brief chapters setting religion in the context of all human capacities, and showing, in fresh language, what theistic religious response is, or can be, in the modern world.
Other form:Electronic version: Steane, Andrew M. Science and humanity. First edition. Oxford, United Kingdom : Oxford University Press, 2018 9780192558046
Review by Choice Review

Steane (Univ. of Oxford, UK) is a distinguished physicist, and in this volume he offers an alternative to views of the incompatibility of science and religion identified with David Hume and Richard Dawkins. Steane argues that science is a network of ideas, not a ladder in which ideas at one level render those at another level redundant. Thus, science is not the appropriate tool for addressing all issues, including, especially, the complex issues of personhood. Steane posits that "the universe is neither bad nor neutral but good," asserting only that this is "a reasonable position, and arguably more reasonable than others." In his exploration of the meaning and purpose of personhood, he finds theistic religion a meaningful instrument. That said, he is concerned not with affirming the existence of God but rather with understanding that this term stands for "that which is most profoundly real and objectively deserving of ... allegiance, whatever that may be." This volume's insightful and appealing consideration of the relationship of science and religion will appeal to thoughtful readers regardless of their position regarding this question. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty. --Samuel C. Pearson, emeritus, Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Choice Review