I believe we all choose to have faith in one book or another.
This is simply, and demonstrably, not true. First, faith is the belief in things without sufficient evidence - once you have evidence, it no longer is faith. Second, scientists don't simply take a "book" as an authority - on anything. The only authority is Nature herself, if you permit me a bit of anthropomorphic imagery there. Any idea is entertained, and then tested against what reality is. In no way would a scientist, performing science, simply "have faith in one book or another".
Who knows what part of our “scientific knowledge” people are going to make fun of a few generations from now as we do from generations that came before?
So, I was thinking about this, and was trying to come up with a list of things that were once felt to be known by scientists and yet we make fun of now. Pretty much the only examples I could come up with are things like the following:
- the glib use of radioactivity, when we first started to use radioactivity for things (e.g. sizing shoes with x-rays)
- the frequent use of antibiotics, when we first started to use antibiotics regularly
- phlogiston theory, when we were working out the theory of thermodynamics
Perhaps I am missing some really good examples. In each case I could think of, however, the common theme was a field that was either new or highly uncertain (like much of medicine). So, on the fringes of science, we can look back and point to many things that were wrong or where the scientists were unjustifiably confident. However, we have other things like:
- Newton's theory of gravity
- Theory of optics
- Atomic theory
- Evolution theory
all of which have withstood more than 100 years of scrutiny, and although some of the initial details have been shown to be incomplete, they haven't been substantially modified for a long time, and they aren't about to change ever. 10,000 years from now, Newton's laws will still be the best description of the mid-world (not too small, not too big and fast).
After a quick example about the preservation of bones, the commenter ended with this:
I’m sure there’s a way to explain this issue logically, and as you say – us religious have a biased perspective and we make up our numbers… I agree… I also believe that ironically you do the same thing. Why don’t we just agree that we both have faith in our perspectives?
An admission that creationists "make up their numbers" is a pretty bold admission! I would want to see evidence that I "ironically" do the same thing. At what point have I "made up numbers"?
The point of my post was that if you spin out the consequences of the claims of creationists, they lead to ridiculous results, or fly in the face of the data itself. This is how we dismantle false ideas, to leave the true ones. If there is a specific claim you want me to evaluate, let me know! If you can demonstrate convincingly that something I have claimed is incorrect, I would celebrate! It's a win-win for me - I learn something new, and I will then believe one fewer wrong thing in life.
So, no, I will not agree that we both have "faith", or confidence in our positions without evidence. If you show me the evidence, I'll change my mind, of course.