Science and the Church--"Truth Cannot Contradict Truth"
Science and the Church--"Truth Cannot Contradict Truth"
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Science and the Church--"Truth Cannot Contradict Truth"

Last updated on 2017-01-07

About the Book

Fatjer Robert Spitzer, S.J.,Ph.D., President of the Magis Center, has this to say about "Science versus the Church":

"A physicist, Dr. Robert Kurland, responds to six supposed conflicts between science and the Catholic Church in this illuminating, easy-to-understand, well-illustrated volume. These conflicts concern historical figures (e.g. Galileo), creation ex nihilo, universal design, evolution, a transphysical soul, and miracles. Kurland not only shows that there is no conflict between contemporary science and the teachings of the Catholic Church, but also reveals the omissions, misunderstandings, and errors of those who contend that there is. In so doing, he sheds considerable light on the scientific, philosophical, and theological nuances of these six complex issues as well as the serendipitous complementarity between reason and revelation. I recommend this book particularly to those who find themselves confused by recent false allegations of a contradiction between science and faith. [emphasis added]" 

Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D. 

Author – New Proofs for the Existence of God: Contributions of Contemporary Physics and Philosophy

About the Author

Robert Kurland
Robert Kurland

Retired, cranky, old physicist.   Convert to Catholicism in 1995.   Trying to show that there is no contradiction between what science tells us about the world and our Catholic faith.   Intermittent blogs and adult education classes to achieve this end (see http://rationalcatholic.blogspot.com/   and http://home.ptd.net/~rkurland)

Extraordinary Minister of Communion volunteer to federal prison and hospital; lector, EOMC.Sometime player of bass clarinet, alto clarinet, clarinet, bass, tenor bowed psaltery for parish instrumental group and local folk group.And, finally, my motivation:“It is also necessary—may God grant it!—that in providing others with books to read I myself should make progress, and that in trying to answer their questions I myself should find what I am seeking.Therefore at the command of God our Lord and with his help, I have undertaken not so much to discourse with authority on matters known to me as to know them better by discoursing devoutly of them.”St. Augustine of Hippo, The Trinity I,8. 

Table of Contents

Preface5

CHAPTER 1 Ways of Knowing 7

SECTION 1.1  INTRODUCTION 7

SECTION 1.2  FAITH AND REVELATION 8

SECTION 1.3  RATIONAL INQUIRY1 0

SECTION 1.4   QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION1 5

CHAPTER 2 Limits of Scientific Knowledge 16

SECTION 2.1  INTRODUCTION 16

SECTION 2.2  PHILOSOPHICAL BACKGROUND 17

SECTION 2.3  HOW DOES SCIENCE WORK? 19

SECTION 2.4  WHAT CAN’T SCIENCE DO?  21

SECTION 2.5   QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION 23

CHAPTER 3 Science and the Church--a Short History  24

SECTION 3.1 INTRODUCTION 24

SECTION 3.2— PROLOGUE: THE GREEK WORLD 25

SECTION 3.3—ST. AUGUSTINE, A THEOLOGIAN FOR OUR TIMES.26

SECTION 3.4  THE CHURCH, MIDWIFE TO SCIENCE 28

SECTION 3.5  SCIENCE VS CHURCH—A COLD WAR? 33

SECTION 3.6   QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION3 38

CHAPTER 4 Science Intersects Catholic Teaching—Cosmology vs Creatio ex Nihilo 39

SECTION 4.1 INTRODUCTION 39

SECTION 4.2 CREATIO EX NIHILO—THEOLOGY 40

Section 4.3 In the Beginning—Cosmology 43

SECTION 4.4  THEOLOGICAL CONSIDERATIONS 55

SECTION 4.5   QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION 58

CHAPTER 5 Are We Special?  The Anthropic Principle 60

SECTION 5.1 INTRODUCTION 60

SECTION 5.2 ARE WE  SPECIAL—THE ANTHROPIC PRINCIPLE 61

SECTION 5.3   QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION 69

CHAPTER 6  Evolution 70

SECTION 6.1 INTRODUCTION 70

SECTION 6.2  THE POSITION OF THE CHURCH ON EVOLUTION 71

SECTION 6.3   THE ORIGIN OF LIFE 75

SECTION 6.4 EVOLUTION—THE SCIENCE 76

SECTION 6.5   QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION8 87

CHAPTER 7 Who Has a Soul? 88

SECTION 7.1  INTRODUCTION 88

SECTION 7.2  CATHOLIC TEACHING ABOUT THE SOUL 89

SECTION 7.3 WHAT DOES SCIENCE TELL US ABOUT THE SOUL? 93

SECTION 7.4   FINAL THOUGHTS 105

SECTION 7.5   QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION105

CHAPTER 8 Miracles 106

SECTION 8.1 INTRODUCTION 106

SECTION 8.2 WHAT IS A MIRACLE? “107

SECTION 8.3 SOME EXAMPLES OF MIRACLES 107

SECTION 8.4 HOW THE CHURCH JUDGES MIRACLES 113

SECTION 8.5  CAN A SCIENTIST BELIEVE IN MIRACLES? 115

SECTION 8.6  QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION 116

REFERENCES 117

BOOKS 117

WEB-BASED (just a sampling—general sites) 119

AFTERWORD 120

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