Photo by Noel A.Tanner
Photo by Noel A.Tanner

One of the biggest ongoing debates in the last two centuries is definitely the one between the conflicting views of faith and science.

For too long now it seems that these views are not only irreconcilable but mutually exclusive. In simplistic terms, faith is commonly associated with the belief in a divine power which is not grounded in the senses, experience or reason. Science, on the other hand, is associated with the objective inquiry into the nature of the universe through experimentation, critical assessment, logic and reason.

Mixed messages of faith:

I was brought up in an ultra-conservative Roman Catholic country with a very fine line of divide between church and state. As a young inquisitive mind growing up in that cultural background I had learned to despise all those authoritative arguments about faith, dogma, and the narrow worldview of catholic doctrine they used to teach us at school.

I remember arguing with the priest that use to teach us religion class (which was compulsory of course) about the irrationality and blindness of dogma and he’d always answer with the same old answer – “It’s a matter of faith”. I used to hate that answer. I thought it was such an excuse for an answer when you don’t have enough reasons to back your arguments.

This is what mostly creates the conflict between reason and faith. It’s the reluctance of some people to have faith understood and assessed with a more evaluative undertone. They say that’s impossible because reason and faith are incompatible. Faith is faith and that’s the end of it.

Faith has another side though – a much more positive one which I have come to understand under a different light. (more…)

Experiments in Faith and leaps of Science

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Music for the SoulI always wondered about the deep connection between humans and music. The origin of music is unknown or at least we only have a very vague idea as to how far its stretches back in time, mainly through the findings of rudimental bone-made musical instruments found in early cave dwellings.

It would also be interesting to know at which stage of the human evolutionary process the appreciation of music emerged. Although we know that other creatures such as higher mammals can respond positively to sounds and music, it is a distinctive mark in humans to really have an aesthetic affinity to it. This is mainly because of our higher and more complex cognitive makeup.

The brain being an intricate pattern-matching organ can recognize subtle sequences and variations in sound waves which are then consolidated and matched to a broader pattern or rhythm, eventually giving rise to that subjective feeling of aesthetic beauty, joy, elation or whatever emotion matches the musical style or our present mood. (more…)

Music for the Soul

Continue Reading Music for the Soul