How do you define “religion”? It appears that, in general, the world defines religion as believing in one or more superhuman beings generally referred to as gods. I believe that religion is more an instruction set on what to believe rather that what one actually does believe. dictionary.reference.com defines religion (in part) as:
- a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.
- a specific fundamental set of beliefs and practices generally agreed upon by a number of persons or sects.
How do you define “faith”? More specifically, I’m referring to “faith” when used in the context of a generalization, such as “faith-based initiatives” and the like, commonly heard in today’s vernacular. dictionary.reference.com defines faith (in part) as:
- belief that is not based on proof
- belief in God or in the doctrines or teachings of religion
- belief in anything, as a code of ethics, standards of merit, etc.
- a system of religious belief
I think of religion and faith quite differently. I think of religion as how one might have been taught to have faith. I think of faith as how one actually believes at their core. Both can be associated with how someone believes and how their worldview is defined. The second definition above of religion could be referring to the National Academy of Sciences, Atheist Alliance International, the Roman Catholic Church, The United States of America, etc… The third definition above of faith could be referring to groups of scientists, Christians, police or firefighters, a coven of witches, etc… I think of religion and faith as both general and specific references to how people believe.
I.D. (Intelligent Design) is something entirely different in my opinion. Intelligent Design is a logical concept, not a spiritual or humanistic one. Intelligent Design is very simply a dedication to the logical examination of origin.
Many people automatically associate “Intelligent Design” with “religion” or some “faith-based initiative”. They often refer to “Intelligent Design” as “religion in disguise”. I believe the reason they refuse to consider intelligent design as an explanation for how life and the universe around it came into existence is because of their “religion” of self-preservation and advancement of their own agenda.
Stephen Meyer on Intelligent Design theory…
Michael Behe on the basis of Intelligent Design…
above are special feature videos from “The Case for a Creator” DVD, Lee Strobel
The discipline of biology will not only survive but prosper if it turns out that genetic information really is the product of preexisting intelligence. Biologists will have to give up their dogmatic materialism and discard unproductive hypotheses like the prebiotic soup, but to abandon bad ideas is a gain, not a loss. Freed of the metaphysical chains that tie it to nineteenth-century materialism, biology can turn to the fascinating task of discovering how the intelligence embodied in the genetic information works through matter to make the organism function. In that case chemical evolution will go the way of alchemy—abandoned because a better understanding of the problem revealed its futility—and science will have reached a new plateau. – Phillip E. Johnson