Old Talk

I just stumbled upon a post about a talk I did last year at the Multi-Faith centre at the University of Derby. I’ll let you follow the link to see how the talk and discussion went, but here’s a copy of a photograph of me trying to talk with my mouth full.

3 Responses to “Old Talk”

  1. Anton Garrett Says:


    Were you giving them crumbs of comfort in that picture?

    The summary you pointed us to claimed that the audience consisted of “people of various faiths, and of none”. I read that as “theistic faiths” because everybody has a faith, meaning something (if theistic, someone) that they believe in, yet cannot demonstrate from anything more basic.

    In the theistic faith to which I hold it is no surprise that science and religion are largely concordant, because I believe that the laws of physics were ordained by the same creator that my religion acknowledges. I think you have written elsewhere on this blog that the universe appears to have been designed.

    General relativity is an example of modern science shedding light on theology, because it gives insight into the notion that not only space was created at the Big Bang, but also time. It is difficult to write a sentence about the origin of time without using words that do not implicitly assume time-ordering, but that is the way forward.

    I agree that science and religion largely inhabit different categories (“orthogonal” as you put it). An example of an overlap – and possible clash – is the subject of miracles.


  2. Thomas D Says:

    – Why is it necessary for everyone to have a ‘faith’?

    Surely one must admit the idea that you don’t have to believe in something or anything, you just have to live. Zen Buddhism for example. It is a religion (particular way of life) or a method – but not a faith.

  3. Anton Garrett Says:


    I used not to have a theistic faith – I changed my mind – but now I realise that I still believed in certain things that I could not prove. (That is all I mean by ‘faith’.) In my scientific research, for instance, I believed that the universe *was* in principle comprehensible to humans. (I still believe that one, in fact.) If you don’t believe this then you will never become a scientist.

    Buddhists (including Zen) believe in reincarnation; they seek to escape this cycle and so escape this world. As monists they see all the differentiation that we observe in the world as illusion. In these assertions there is plenty that you have to take by faith.


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