Karl Popper and the belief in God

One of the criticisms often leveled on religious belief is that the belief in God is not falsifiable. I am no philosopher but I cant help but think about an answer to this, in my opinion, erroneous allegation.

My answer is based on my own experience with religious belief. Often in my life I have questioned my belief and as a result sort of, suspended my belief, and looked for evidence for the affirmation or negation of my belief. Subsequent research into the question has proved to be satisfactory, and life experiences have proved to be confirmatory.

The existence of many individuals who have rejected religion after believing can be presented as evidence against the claim that belief in God is not falsifiable (one must remember though that the majority of people who question their belief do  not eventually reject it and claiming that they have not truly questioned is just plain arrogance).

According to Popper the work of science is in reality the construction of theories and then the active work to disprove them. But is that really true? All over the world research on science is not conducted in this manner, science is not taught as a theory, but rather as fact (evolution for instance in schools etc; but if its status is falsifiable then why is taught as fact), although I can give some credence to the claim that at the highest level scientists are researching using Poppers understanding. So too, most religionists are satisfied with their belief and do not actively go around questioning it, but at the highest level we have examples of individuals who have questioned their belief (Imam Ghazali a case in point).

Now, that I have made a reasonable case against this allegation, most of the non-believers will turn around and say but you do not use scientific methods to falsify this claim .. that again is wrong, human beings use their intellect to find answers to the question of God, and they are as scientific as any scientific method. It would help studying philosophy of science and the underlying principles of scientific methods, which are based on certain assumptions etc; after what makes one method more scientific than the other? Who says that subjective experience is not a valid scientific method? There is a lot of discussion in the scientific circles on this issue.




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One Response to Karl Popper and the belief in God

  1. azhar says:

    I would say, I hear. Up until 10 years ago its not that I questioned my belief, I just never got around to acknowledging it. The last decade has taught but one thing, life is limited and spiritual conscious is must have in order to understand and comprehend the word “belief” before time runs out.

    There are enough signs to accommodate both sides of the coin. My life experiences have done nothing but fortify my belief that I need to submit.

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