A Religion and Ethics for the Age of Science: Religious Naturalism (ARFTAOS)
The Search Principle
We can develop a religion and ethics for the current scientific age through a free and responsible search for truth and meaning. The search for truth involves evidence-based scientific research. The search for meaning involves experience based religious reconnection. (The Latin word “religare” – “to reconnect” – may be taken to be the root of the word “religion”; the prefix “re-“ is given the same meaning in “reconnect” as in ”Research”).
Evidence-based scientific research indicates that we humans are an integral part of an interrelated, interactive, and interdependent web of all that exist. We call this emerging and evolving web the cosmos and our scientific knowledge of it cosmology.
More particularly, we are an integral part of an interrelated, interactive, interdependent web of all life. We call this emerging and evolving web the biosphere, and our scientific knowledge of it biology.
An emerging and evolving information handling capability is an important factor in the emergence and evolving of the biosphere. This capability involves both instinctive and learned capabilities.
The biosphere can also exist only in combination with an atmosphere, and aquasphere , and a terrasphere. We call this combination an ecosphere, and our scientific knowledge of it ecology. Our ecosphere is a hollow shell extending from some distance below the surface of the earth to a greater distance above. We know of no other.
This ecosphere is also often called the natural world or nature, and those who study it naturalists.
Religious beliefs normally call for the extension of respect, honor and love to one’s family and community. Religious Naturalism calls for their further extension to biosphere and ecosphere.
Modern science and technology have been seriously affecting the health of anthroposphere and ecosphere. Religious naturalistic ethics holds the human species responsible for optimizing the net effect of their behavior on the wellbeing and progress of the ecosphere.
P. Roger Gillette
July 7, 2014
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