Wednesday, May 21, 2008

An Alien Idea

The Vatican (Roman Catholic Church) has stated that it is acceptable to believe in aliens. This is proof of a point which I was actually making earlier today, that the Catholic Church is a supporter of science. I attended Catholic high school in New York City, where I was taught about evolution for the first time. I was taught that it was the Church's policy that religious belief and scientific theory could co-exist. My biology teacher was actually a priest, and never contradicted science for the sake of religion. While my beliefs may have changed over the years, my respect for the Church's policy for supporting science and education has not. It seems as though some supporters of science would emphasize the divide between religion and science, when creating such a divide is what maintains ignorance. Perhaps these people are talking more of the Christian fundamentalists of the South (U.S.) and Midwest, but I still feel like Catholicism gets lumped in with that sect. Is it not possible for those of faith to open their minds to science, and for scientists to show a mutual respect for those who are religious? Religious institutions have historically attempted to hold back scientific progress; however, it is not necessary for the pendulum to now swing the other way. To me, this is more an issue of mutual respect and tolerance than of whose theories and beliefs are correct.
By the way, this is what I think aliens actually might look like if they exist:) Mexican Axolotl

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