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Shawn wrote:

Hi, guys —

Good morning!

I often hear theologians say faith and science are intertwined together . . . telling the same story, from different views but I don't agree with that statement.

  • Isn't faith subjective to the individual while science is universal?

In other words, the scientific method doesn't care if one is Catholic, Buddhist, etc.

  • What am I missing here?



  { Isn't faith subjective to the individual while science is universal? }

Paul replied:

Dear Shawn,

Faith and science (as well as reason) are different avenues to the same truth. There is only one truth and these three methods:

  1. the empirical
  2. the rational, and
  3. the traditional

are different paths to get there.

While the content of the scientific method is universal, each individual must subjectively understand it. The same can be said about true reason and true faith. Its content is universal but individuals must subjectively understand it.

True faith, reason, and science can never contradict each other.


Shawn replied:


  • How does Christianity hold up to empirical scientific truths?


Paul replied:


In your latest question, hold up to makes no sense. Neither faith, reason, nor science can hold up to the other two. This is because each is a different way, using a different method, to attain truth.

A person who mainly values the content of faith might ask,

  • How do scientific findings hold up to Divine Revelation?
  1. Science speaks of what can be seen
  2. Reason of what can be thought, and
  3. Faith of what has been revealed from above.

Faith, reason, and science are the three ways to certitude. The truth is that whenever the contents of faith, reason, and science do not coincide something must be understood deeper and interpreted better.

That is the work of the theologian, philosopher, and scientist, respectively.


Shawn replied:


You said:

  1. Science speaks of what can be seen
  2. Reason of what can be thought, and
  3. Faith of what has been revealed from above.

This is exactly my point. Science speaks of what can be seen and reason of what can be thought of. It applies regardless of what the individual believes but faith is revealed and believe by whomever [follows/beliefs] that religious view. i.e. Hindus, Buddhist, Christians, etc.

They believe their God gives them divine revelation but it's subjective. Science/Reason is true regardless if you believe in Jesus, the Prophet Muhammad, etc.


Paul replied:

Hi, Shawn —

What you're saying can apply to any of the three avenues to certainty.

People can see the same event and interpret it much differently. This is why eye-witnesses give different testimony in court. People can also be given the same data and reason-it-out very differently.

Some can reason all being and movement to its Source, as Aquinas does in his five proofs for the existence of God, while others have difficulty reasoning why a mutual contradiction cannot both be true. So, while you focus on people having different faiths, the exact point can be made with people having different conclusions with regard to the senses as well as the mind.

This doesn't mean there is not an objective truth regarding all three. There is. It is our subjective understanding and interpretation of the truth that differs and this is the case:

  1. with faith
  2. with reason, and
  3. with science.


Shawn replied:

Good point! Thanks!



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