One of the biggest focuses of this class has been to define things that are simply hard to define. But how do we go about doing that? Is the Oxford English dictionary the supreme authority on words? Some would argue yes, because there must be an authority. Personally, however, I’ve never put much stock in “authority.” I also believe that it’s contrary to the English language to set anything in stone. If Shakespeare had played by the rules, his works wouldn’t have been half as brilliant, half as well remembered, or half as beautiful. The English language is constantly evolving, so setting it in stone is contrary to its very nature. The question we’re being asked to answer is asks, “What criteria are you using to define religion?” And that’s a question that should be answered; but also consider if the definition of religion is changing, or if it might have changed already.
You can only ask the question, “has science become a religion,” if you define what a religion is. In the 2:20 class, I (Luke) said that I thought that science was more of the “Holy Scripture” of atheism and/or agnosticism, which could be thought of as religions (the criteria used at that point was: an external practice of some sort, and holding some sort of metaphysical belief) So this is something else to think about, if science is not a religion, what role does it play in what you are defining as a religion?
Professor Berry brought up the possibly use of money or capitalism as potential “religions” in our society. Do any of you buy into that concept or do you think that our society has another ‘religion’ altogether?
--Chase and Luke