Science as religion

A stepwise depiction of the change in belief-isms, aka “science as religion” or knowledge informing beliefs, from 20 million years ago (MYA) to present, in the course of human evolution, from: animalism (2 MYA), or “behavior that is characteristic of or appropriate to animals, particularly in being physical and instinctive”, to fearism (2 MYA), to tabooism, to spiritism (200,000 YA), to polytheism (5,100 YA), generally demarcated by the formation of the Egyptian 1st dynasty (3100BC), to monotheism (3400 YA), initiated by the efforts of Akhenaten (1330BC), to agnosticism (150 YA), a term introduced by Thomas Huxley (1869), to zerotheism, generally introduced by Libb Thims (2015), amid the “Zerotheism for Kids” lecture, the latter of which anchored in "belief in the atom" as Richard Feynman advised (see: Feynman time capsule wisdom) as the most important belief to humanity.
In terminology, science as religion refers to []

The premise of “science is my religion”, to note, is a bit of melting pot term, without specific doctrine, according to which the person who says this, supposedly, picks their top dozen or so scientific prophets or philosophers, and therein calls this their belief system.

In 1758, Goethe, at the age of 9, built his own alter to nature out of his father’s natural history collection, surmounting it with a candle (made of sulfur), which he lit when making his devotions (see: Goethe timeline); in 1809, age 60, after previously discovering evolution on his own and proving it to himself (see: human intermaxillary bone, 1784); in 1809, after discussing his ideas with Friedrich Schiller (1799-1803), he published a coded philosophical-naturalism prototype of a "religious idea", so to say, based on physical chemistry, i.e. elective affinity theory in particular, aka Goetheanism, as it has come to be called.

In 1804, Percy Shelley, while a student of Adam Walker, learned about possibility of life on other planets, links between magnetism and electricity (Ѻ), and on the elements and, similar to Goethe, the chemical or elective affinities, and thereafter began to develop his own personal religion which he used as an operating manual; by age 19, after the publication of his “The Necessity of Atheism”, which got him expelled from Oxford, he soon became one of England’s most-notorious atheists; five years later, age 24, he married “Mary Shelley”, soon-to-become famed Frankenstein author, in the so-called “Church of Elective Affinities”, as Mary Shelley (1839) retrospectively referred to their conceptual chapel, wherein the gospel the religion of “Elective Affinities”, as it was known in their social circle, which included Lord Byron, among others, was preached.

In circa 1809, Wilhelm Ostwald, building in part of Goethe and his elective affinities ideas, attempted to establish a radical atheism proto-religion, based on physical chemistry, or energetics primarily, called monism, which he promoted with Ernst Haeckel, e.g. in his weekly "Monistic Sunday Sermons" and other promotions.

In 1976 to 2007, Howard T. Odum, building on the earlier teachings of his father Howard W. Odum, one example statement of which is as follows:

Science is being called the religion of the modern era.”
Howard W. Odum (1929), An Introduction to Social Research (pgs. 14)

attempted to introduce an energy-based religion, based on an "emergy morality" system; the effort, and their school, aka Odum school, is somewhat similar to Ostwald, but more amateurish, being that, the Odums not being physical scientists, based their understanding of energy and thermodynamics on dictionary definitions and food chain models of energy flow in society (see: energy flow diagrams); commendable, but largely off-target, say as compared to Ostwald, Shelley, and Goethe.

In 2015, Libb Thims, building on Goethe, Shelley, Ostwald, among others in the hierarchy of great atheists, e.g. Nietzsche, Buchner, Le Mattrie, etc. (see: atheism types by denial and belief), taught a "Monday School" class to six Chicago children, aged 6 to 11, entitled "Zerotheism for Kids", wherein he introduced a nuts and bolts basic type of belief system called "zerotheism" based on explicit denial of the belief in the existence of god, Big Bang cosmology, and Goethean morality, in place of or upgrade to the "god created every thing" in six days, Nile river flood cosmology, snake-n-apple morality, the six year old was learning at the time.

In 1985, Mary Midgley, in her Evolution as Religion, attempted to use some type of animal rights morality platform to argue that reductionism is wrong, holism is right, and evolution as religion aimed at an omega point is like a zombie or pied piper belief system, or something along these lines. [5]

Science is my religion (photo)
A 2010 “Last Supper of Einstein” illustration, by Nick Farrantello (Ѻ), as found (Ѻ) as the header of the Facebook group page “Science is My Religion” — a parody of the Leonardo da Vinci’s circa 1490 “Last Supper of Christ” painting (Ѻ) — showing: Galileo, Marie Curie, Robert Oppenheimer, Newton, Louis Pasteur, Stephen Hawking, Einstein, Carl Sagan, Thomas Edison, Aristotle, Neil Tyson, Richard Dawkins, and Charles Darwin. [3]
Einstein | Last Supper
The adjacent 2010 “Last Supper of Einstein” by American critical thinker Nick Farrantello, is one example of this; in commentary about why isn’t so-and-so in the group photo, e.g. Tesla, more women, more minorities, etc., he commented as follows: [4]

“I’m kind of sorry there were only thirteen spots. Every time I put someone new on, I had to kick someone off. What about Rosalind Elsie Franklin the woman who was responsible for much of the genetics research that led to Watson and Crick discovering DNA or Vivien Thomas the African American surgeon who pioneered heart surgery? While we’re on the subject of minorities what about Michio Kaku the theoretical physicist behind string theory? In the end I went with people who were well known. Maybe one day I’ll do a picture full of unsung heroes.”

The photo collage, in short, represents a generic “religion science”, in this case that of Farrantello. Most others, who have some sort of science religion, will have a similar conception in their mind. Many of these, however, will be error-prone. In Farrantello’s case, e.g., his use of Dawkins, whose theories are immensely error-ridden, e.g. his chance-based, pointlessness, DNA-focused model, etc., is a red flag in respect to foundations.

The following are related quotes:

“The world is my country, science is my religion.”
Christiaan Huygens (c.1670), attributed and or mis-attributed (Ѻ)

“There is an element of cruelty in all of us. We may all discover within us, if we search carefully enough, that insani leonis vim of which Horace speaks. It would be a mistake to suppose that ecclesiastics who discharged Inquisitorial functions must have been abnormally hard-hearted. St. Peter Martyr, their 'egregious captain,' who achieved fame as one of the most relentless exterminators of heresy the world has ever seen, is described in the Bull of his canonisation as being of 'sweet benignity, of exhaustless compassion, of wonderful charity.' There is no sort of reason for questioning the accuracy of the description. No doubt an Inquisitor's sensibility to suffering was blunted by the constant sight of it in the torture chamber. I can the more readily understand that this was so, from the comparative indifference with which, as a young man, I soon came to view the execution of sentences of hanging and flogging, at which it was my duty to be present when an assistant magistrate in India. For myself, I do not hold the person of the Inquisitor in admiration. But we must be just—even to an Inquisitor. And the present age supplies a parallel which may, perhaps, help us to be so. Science is to the Vivisector what orthodoxy was to the Inquisitor. Indeed, I remember a physician, much famed for the ferocity of his feats in physiological laboratories, remarking to me, ‘Science is my religion.’ Well, this gentleman, for the advance of his religion, did not shrink from causing to multitudes of dogs and horses physical sufferings as intense as any Inquisitor ever inflicted on heretics or suspected heretics. But it may be said, 'The Vivisector's victims are animals lower than man in the scale of being [see: chain of being]; the Inquisitor's were men.' Of course, that is, as a rule, true. The Vivisector is obliged—at all events usually—to content himself with animals lower than man, in default of the human subjects upon whom, if his experiments are to possess any real scientific value, they should be performed. And, of course, every metaphysician knows that rights cannot, in the strict sense, be predicated of the lower animals, who are not persons. But if not persons, they assuredly are not mere things. They possess what Trendelenburg calls ein Stuck persunliches. They are 'our poor relations.' Hence, as it appears to me, to torture them is much more cowardly than to torture men. Anyhow, torture is torture, and familiarity with it engenders callousness concerning it—nay, too often, a taste for it. The Vivisector is, to say the least, as indifferent to the sufferings of his victims as was the Inquisitor. Curiosity as to the attainment of the desired result, not pity, is the emotion produced in his mind by the agonies and cries which, like the Officials of the Holy Office, he carefully, perhaps complacently, notes. We are not justified in attributing to him, any more than to the Inquisitor, abnormal hard-heartedness. But, like the Inquisitor, he illustrates a tendency in human nature to shrink from no savagery towards others ad eruendam veritatem —in the attempt to elicit truth. That tendency I, for one, hold to be evil in itself. The doctrine, so ignorantly imputed to certain schools of casuists, that a good end will justify any means, is simply false, and inconsistent with the first principles of morals. We have no right to employ physical torture in order to elicit truth, whether in judicial or scientific investigation. It is an unethical means; and that is the true objection to it in both cases.”
— William Lilly (1897), “The Methods of Inquisition” [1]
Evolution as Religion (1985)
Mary Midgley's 1985 anti-reductionist, anti-materialism, evolution as religion ridiculing book. [5]

“The method of science is my religion.”
— Author (1937), “Article” (Ѻ), The Christian Leader

“I don't know my neighbours, and they don't know me. Frankly, I prefer it that way. I like my privacy. "Religion? I can barely remember what it is. My family was Roman Catholic. I suppose science is my religion now.”
— Author (1972), “Article” (Ѻ), Canada and the World

Jean Perrin [father] and Francis Perrin [son] held similar political and philosophical ideas. Both were socialists and atheists. Like many nineteenth century French men of science, Jean Perrin viewed science almost as a religion.”
— Jean-Claude Valeur (2001), New Trends in Fluorescence Spectroscopy [2]

1. Lilly, William. (1897). “The Methods of the Inquisition”, Contemporary Review, Mar; in: The Animal’s Defender and the Zoophilist (pg. 229), 17-17, 1897.
(b) William Samuel Lilly – Wikipedia.
2. (a) Bernard Valeur, Jean-Claude Brochon (2001). New Trends in Fluorescence Spectroscopy: Applications to Chemical and Life Sciences (atheists, pg. 17). Springer, 2012.
(b) Thims, Libb. (2015). “Second Law and Three Evolution Paradoxes: Life, Evolve, and Soul” (reviews) (pdf), JHT, 10(1):1-14.
3. Science is My Religion – Facebook.
4. (a) Farrantello, Nick. (2010). “Last Supper of Einstein” (Ѻ), Rational Crank,, Mar 30.
(b) Nick Farrantello (about) –
5. Midgley, Mary. (1985). Evolution as a Religion: Strange Hopes and Stranger Fears (Ѻ). Routledge, 2003.

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