Friday, February 17, 2006

Bedrock of a Faith Is Jolted - Los Angeles Times

Bedrock of a Faith Is Jolted - Los Angeles Times:
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"From the time he was a child in Peru, the Mormon Church instilled in Jose A. Loayza the conviction that he and millions of other Native Americans were descended from a lost tribe of Israel that reached the New World more than 2,000 years ago.

"We were taught all the blessings of that Hebrew lineage belonged to us and that we were special people," said Loayza, now a Salt Lake City attorney. "It not only made me feel special, but it gave me a sense of transcendental identity, an identity with God."

A few years ago, Loayza said, his faithwas shaken and his identity stripped away by DNA evidence showing that the ancestors of American natives came from Asia, not the Middle East...."
The tensions between religion and science have been with us for hundreds, and perhaps thousands of years. Copernicus and Galileo both proposed models of the universe that were at odds with what was then considered "revealed truth" and Galileo, in particular, faced serious consequences as a result.

In 1970 I took my first college-level biology course using Keeton's text Biological Science. I still remember a statement in the introduction about the different ways people search for truth, and how science differs from faith. Paraphrasing Keeton, he said that making one's faith dependent on any aspect of the physical universe open to study, puts such faith at risk for having science destroy it.

Is this what is happening here?

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