14 July 2007

What real scientists believe

Is science reconcilable with religion or even supportive of it, as some believers these days like to claim? Let's take a look at what scientists themselves think. According to this 1998 survey, 72% of members of the US National Academy of Sciences are atheists, while only 7% affirmed a belief in God (the rest were agnostic). The figures can't be taken as highly exact since they reflect only those who responded to the survey, but it's clear that the number of believers among scientists is strikingly low, especially considering that the US is by far the most religious country in the developed world. Note also the 1914 and 1933 figures, which show that religious belief among scientists has been steadily declining over the long term. There's no reason to think that this trend hasn't continued since 1998.

Found via this excellent posting at Black Sun Journal, which nicely differentiates the world-views of science and superstition, and dissects some of the common attacks on the former.

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