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Hinduism’s Enduring Respect for Science


Active member
The clash of religious belief and science in medieval Europe simply did not occur in India, where a “scientific outlook” has long prevailed

In the west, the idea that science and religion stand at opposite ends of a spectrum has long been widespread. Most people have taken as given the notion that worldly pursuits are, by their very nature, preclusive of the achievement of spiritual goals, that intellect and logic are antithetical to intuition and faith, and that there are basically only two kinds of people: the religious, or spiritual, who live by belief alone, and the rational, who accept only what is perceived by the senses and what experience and experimentation prove.

In the years leading up to the Enlightenment, Christianity and science arrived at an uneasy compromise after centuries of strife in Europe. Scientific authority was gaining recognition, but that of the Church had not completely waned. The tension eventually separated Church and State, leaving science and religion each to its own sphere of interest. The result was a cultural dichotomy in which two completely different approaches were encouraged, one for answering religious questions and another for scientific ones.


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