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Faraday and Templeton brainwash British kids

It’s horrible to brainwash children into religious faith.  How much less horrible is it to brainwash the kids into being accommodationists—to accepting that science is compatible with religion?

That, at least, is the latest project of the Faraday Institute for Science and Religion, a think tank (or, rather, a revelation tank) originally funded by the Templeton Foundation.  Faraday has some science street cred, too, as it’s based at St. Edmund’s College at Cambridge University, so, unlike Templeton, it’s affiliated with a respectable academic institution.  But Faraday is the British equivalent of Templeton, for its mission is to show that faith and science are harmonious, compatible, and best friends forever. So my British friends, though you pride yourself on the lack of religiosity, be aware that there are stealth accommodationists among you.

Here are a few of Faraday’s recent activities:

  • A “short course in science and religion” this month, featuring two Templeton Prize winners and accommodationists (John Polkinghorne and Denis Alexander), four Reverends, a theologian, and someone with science training. Looks as if religion is predominant in this one.
  • A lecture series that has included a talk by Polkinghorne on “A destiny beyond death” (what do you suppose the answer might be?), and will include a talk on the legacy of Thomas Aquinas and, inevitably, a talk by Elaine Ecklund, the Templeton-Funded sociologists who specializes in distorting data to make American scientists seem more religious than they really are.
  • A public lecture in February by Jügen Moltmann, “From physics to theology: a personal story.”

But alas, perhaps the most nefarious of Faraday’s activities is its “Faraday Schools” project. This is a series of lesson plans, movies, and other educational materials designed to convince young kids that science and God are compatible.  Watch the three-minute movie on the front page, which starts out all science-y but then transits into JesusLand after two minutes. There’s some dissing of Dawkins for confusing “mechanism” with “agency.”  And, like Haught, Professor John Bryant, the Dawkins-disser uses a cup of coffee to show that difference (Haught used tea)!  I’m going to refer to this accommodationist argument as “The Hot Beverage Fallacy”:

a. I want a cup of tea

b. I put the water on the boil

c. Physics makes the water boil

d. But I made the tea!

e. Ergo Jesus.

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TAGGED: CHILDREN, EDUCATION, JERRY COYNE, RELIGION, SCIENCE


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