Has Cognitive Science Explained (Away) God?

Nov 23, 2020 by

by Mitch Stokes, The Gospel Coalition:

Review: ‘God on the Brain’ by Bradley Sickler.

We’re often told that science is steadily removing reasons for belief in God. As atheist Jerry Coyne says, “Bit by bit, the list of phenomena that once demanded an explanatory God is being whittled down to nothing.”

It’s not that this kind of claim doesn’t have force; indeed, I think it requires careful consideration, and always will. But thoughtful consideration can take a lot of the wind out of this claim’s sails—at least insofar as it’s an objection to God’s existence. This is where Bradley Sickler’s helpful new book comes in. God on the Brain: What Cognitive Science Does (and Does Not) Tell us about Faith, Human Nature, and the Divine is a careful response to the kind of assertion made by Coyne and his cohorts.

As the title indicates, Sickler—associate professor of philosophy and director for the master of arts in theological studies program at the University of Northwestern in St. Paul, Minnesota—focuses on what can generally be called “brain science,” a cluster of disciplines that includes cognitive science, neurophysiology, evolutionary morality, and evolutionary psychology. Although these disciplines are relatively young, they’re already making discoveries that have important implications for our understanding of human nature. And, not surprisingly, these discoveries are forcing us to think more deeply about traditional religious beliefs.

Read here

See also:

Life in the shadow of death: finding hope in the pandemic. Professors John Lennox and John Wyatt discuss science, suffering and hope in Jesus.

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