Hi. I’m Ursula Goodenough, a professor emerita at Washington University where I engaged in

molecular research on eukaryotic algae. I am also the president of the Religious Naturalist Association and author of the book The Sacred Depths of Nature. In this book, I examine cosmology, cell biology, evolution, and neuroscience, celebrate the mystery and wonder of being alive, and suggest that the Religious Naturalist orientation might serve as the basis for a “planetary ethic” that draws from both science and the world’s religious traditions.

Here are some other life experiences:

- Served as president of The American Society for Cell Biology.

- Author of three editions of the widely adopted textbook Genetics.

- Served as president of The Institute on Religion in an Age of Science.

- Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Science.

- Invited by the Mind and Life Institute to meet with the Dalai Lama as part of a series of

seminars to help deepen his understanding of the sciences.

- Mother to 5 beautiful children and grandmother to 9 of their children.

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Comments: 358 • Responses: 61  • Date: 

TheFlyingGerbil66 karma

I think a lot of people would have a similar set of beliefs as religious naturalism describes but would feel uncomfortable describing it as religion. Why do you think it is important to do so?

panbanisha75 karma

We use the adjective religious and not the noun religion. I agree that it's not a religion in the sense that that word is usually used: a cannon of beliefs, a clergy, etc. We suggest that it's instead a religious orientation, centered on our science-based understandings of nature, that encourages us to interpret those understandings and respond to them spiritually (inward) and morally (outward, communal).

H0agh38 karma

I still don't understand why you need to call it religious, which by the word itself implies a religion being involved.

A follow-up question would be, do you imply "atheist" science can't be morally just?

Does wonder at nature's marvels immediately have to imply some religious connotation? Am I as an atheist not allowed or able to admire these marvels of nature just the same? Or feel a moral obligation to threat the planet, and all living beings on it with respect?

It does sound very New Agey to me which I'm sure looking at your credentials is not the aim of what you're trying to bring across at all.

panbanisha59 karma

I am also an atheist, albeit I call myself a non-theist, and many of the world's traditions -- Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism -- have no supervening god. That I use the word religious doesn't mean that I'm a Theist, albeit I fully understand that many folks in western cultures have made that association. Not understanding where the New Agey part comes from and would appreciate your helping me out.

H0agh30 karma

First of all, thank you for taking the time to answer me Dr. Ursula.

My New Agey comment comes from it sounding vaguely religious but hidden under assumptions of just admiring or "being one" with nature and fully respecting the wonder of it.

In any case, it's also a way of me saying it all sounds a bit "hippyish" for lack of a better word? A bit out there.

And I'm sure if I read more into what you're actually saying that's not true at all.

It might be a generational thing, whereas the younger generations tend to associate themselves less and less with anything to do with religion these days, especially because most we see or read about it is about restriction our rights, freedoms, etc.

I think the entire notion of calling it religious naturalism immediately carries negative associations with it for a lot of people, which is why I would much prefer a less loaded term that doesn't have millenia of history behind it and doesn't assume you can only truly appreciate the wonder of life if there's some sort of religious sentiment behind it;

"A divine miracle of creation" instead of just "Wow, isn't nature amazing!"

TLDR: I do believe the simple word religion/religious is a loaded term these days that implies you're coming from a certain point of view from the outset.

panbanisha34 karma

Yup, well I'm kinda stuck with it now, albeit, as I wrote to another poster, I never use the -ism and refer to it as a religious naturalist orientation.

I wrote the first edition of the book 25 years ago and it resonated with a lot of people, many of whom had abandoned their religion of origin and were seeking another large-story context to inhabit.

"Wow isn't nature amazing" describes the naturalist. All RNs are naturalists. We just go one to explore the religious potential of that framework along spiritual (non-theistic) and moral trajectories.

I gotta say that this AMA has sure lifted up the diversity of perception: you consider what I'm suggesting "hippyish;" another called it "scientistic;" etc. I'm learning a lot!

Dirty_Virmling19 karma

Respectfully, this sounds an awful lot like "Defund the police doesn't mean get rid of the police." I understand your intended message but you're essentially making up your own ultra-specific definition for a commonly used word and it is very obviously going to cause confusion. It almost seems like that confusion is the goal, to be honest, a form of intellectual clickbait.

panbanisha12 karma

I'm talking about 2 words, religious and religion. Distinctions between them are hardly my invention, and we're for sure not motivated by clickbait generation or to introduce confusion, but you're of course free to hold that opinion!

LurkBot90003 karma

Distinctions between them are hardly my invention

Its totally not your fault modern people never looked up the medieval usage?

There's common usage and then there's your usage. In common circles theres no way you arent aware that the term is going to create confusion. Youve already said that you had to spend a lot of time explaining your usage of the term.

IMO good ideas, poorly enough communicated, are no different than bad ideas. Useless

panbanisha1 karma

So what name would you give to what we're talking about? www.religious-naturalist-association.org ?

LurkBot90003 karma

How would I know if I cant even parse what it is youre trying to to communicate about your group.

Genuine question. What does religion or spirituality have to do with science in the context you'd like to join them?

From my perspective Im thinking of science as a toolkit for questioning the things around us to for a more complete and accurate understanding of everything. Religion I see as a creative way to explain the unknown that people take so far as to become eventually indestructible and unquestionable, which is where I struggle to see the connection.

panbanisha1 karma

Religion I see as a creative way to explain the unknown that people take so far as to become eventually indestructible and unquestionable

It would be great if you could help me understand what you mean here.

Dirty_Virmling-1 karma

Google "religious" and tell me what the top definition is.

panbanisha16 karma

Fair enough. Go to wiki https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion and you get a far more complex version.

I am deeply aware that what I'm thinking and writing about turns some people off because I use the R-word, with which they have a negative association, and it would seem that you are one of them. But I hope you'll acknowledge that religious traditions have a deep cultural history with many manifestations, and that in the case of those of us developing the religious naturalist orientation (note orientation and not religion, and note that we don't speak of religious natural-ISM except as shorthand; there's no ISM, no dogma, it's an exploration), we use the word not in the western sense that grounds the google definitions but in the broad sense of religare.

Dirty_Virmling-2 karma

I am deeply aware that what I'm thinking and writing about turns some people off because I use the R-word, with which they have a negative association, and it would seem that you are one of them.

You aren't actually reading what I'm saying if this is what you took from my comments.

we use the word not in the western sense that grounds the google definitions but in the broad sense of religare.

Like I said before:

you're essentially making up your own ultra-specific definition for a commonly used word and it is very obviously going to cause confusion.

I'm an academic myself, so believe me when I say I understand how frustrating it can be when the general public uses a word differently than you're used to in your professional life. But the simple reality here is that your use of the term "religious" is deeply confusing to the people you're trying to reach, and is pretty clearly counter productive.

baconabuser12 karma

Your own dogmas surrounding the word aren’t allowing you to see that there are appropriate uses outside of Western constructs. As an academic you should realize that possibility

Dirty_Virmling13 karma

I'm not really arguing about "appropriate" uses, I'm simply pointing out how the vast majority of people use and understand the word, and the obvious confusion it's causing.

panbanisha19 karma

Agree that it can cause confusion. Lots of words can. "Woke" can be a virtue or a pejorative. Same for spiritual. It'll be interesting to see how religious is used 25 years from now -- I won't be here but I hope most of you are!

miles29128 karma

.. and promote a book

panbanisha14 karma

It might well be the case that the book would be better received if I didn't use religious, but it works for many of us. The Latin root is religare, to bind together, same root as ligament. It best conveys what I'm trying to convey.

Dirty_Virmling-3 karma

It best conveys what I'm trying to convey.

It quite obviously does not, though. It might convey that to you, but that's not who you should be trying to communicate with here.

panbanisha19 karma

Well, I'm clearly not conveying/communicating with you, but it's a bit presumptuous, wouldn't you think, that your response is synonymous with the response of all others in this conversation.

theusualchaos29 karma

Isn't that just philosophy? Seems unnecessary to shoehorn religion in there as a buzzword

panbanisha1 karma

Philosophy is the interpretation part. Religious also includes spiritual and moral parts.

alex4943 karma

Wouldn't you just use the word "spiritual" then?

panbanisha1 karma

Spiritual in our framework is a part of being religious but not the whole thing. There are also the moral and interpretive parts.

SpicyPeanutSauce41 karma

Hi Ursula,

I find Religious Naturalism very interesting and reminiscent of my own personal philosophies on nature and existence so I have two questions for you.

  1. Why brand a science guided philosophy as "Religious"? There's a lot of connotations around that word that don't seem to fit what you describe and many belief systems that have disassociated from the word entirely.
  2. And how does a nature guided ethics system work without conflicting "Survival of the fittest" or many of the other gruesome parts the natural world that encourage survival over empathy? I feel like the only way would be to pick and choose examples that fit the system?

Thank you for your time!

panbanisha50 karma

  1. A vanilla naturalist" philosophy is held by all religious naturalists. We go on to explore its religious potential, which is non-theistic but includes interpretive responses (e.g. why is there anything at all rather than nothing?, a question most of us can't answer), spiritual responses (e.g. awe, assent, humility, gratitude, reverence), and moral responses to these understandings.

  2. We come from a social lineage. In all such lineages the individual is challenged to balance self-interest with group cooperation. Non-human primates achieve this balance quite admirably, and I believe we have the capacity, albeit not always the will, to do likewise. Suggest some readings from Frans de Waal and Richard Wrangham.

sailing_by_the_lee37 karma

In my experience, those who deny the scientific worldview often say that "science is just another religion." They believe that the scientific naturalist worldview and its products have no special status or validity, compared to, say, the Christian Bible. Are you not concerned that you are playing into this foolishness by characterizing your naturalism as "religious"?

I realize that you make a critical distinction between "religious" and "religion," but this seems like an incredibly subtle distinction for laymen. On the other end of the spectrum, most scientists would take one look at the name and think your association is comprised of a bunch of internally conflicted Christian scientists awkwardly trying to resolve their dissonant worldviews. So, who is your intended audience?

panbanisha30 karma

Well, I know lots of highly reputable scientists who are comfortable calling themselves religious naturalists, albeit there are doubtless many who have the knee-jerk responses you describe. Science is a way of asking questions, not a religion. And its status/validity is documented via the practice we call technology, which utilizes the answers to these questions to make things. If we get the science wrong, the technology doesn't work.


Are you related to John B. Goodenough?

Also, how was it to meet the Dalai Lama? Did you have to prepare for any protocols?

panbanisha75 karma

I am very proud to say that he's my older brother. He just celebrated his 100th birthday! For those not familiar, he just won the Nobel Prize for inventing the lithium battery. Way way way above my mental capacities!

AnthropicSynchrotron15 karma

I'm not sure whether I'm more astonished to learn that her older brother is the Dalai Lama, or that the Dalai Lama invented the lithium battery.

panbanisha11 karma


RadOwl16 karma

Hello Ursula. My question for you is how does a person who lives in an urban environment where the natural world has been paved over learn to enjoy and love nature? We hear that being in nature has a way of resetting the human system, and I know that things such as bird sounds and natural colors are shown to affect the brain and nervous system in good ways. So then you hear this advice, oh just go take a walk in nature and you'll feel better, but for some people that's not an option, and if they go hug a tree they're likely to be targeted of some kind of weirdo. I don't know if there's a good answer to this question but I figured I'd ask since you're here and if anyone would know it would be you.

panbanisha24 karma

It's a challenge to be sure, but there are lots of workarounds. There are wonderful TV channels that can take you anywhere. I believe that alll cities have parks and nearby nature preserves. A dog cat or bird, if your landlord allows them, can be a great way to connect with other beings, and house plants have provided me with endless fascination.

RadOwl12 karma

Thank you for your answer. I never imagined myself as a houseplant guy but I probably have three dozen of them. I like to think that they hear me when I talk.

panbanisha16 karma

Maybe they do and maybe they don't; I myself lean on the don't side. But what's important is that in talking to them you're forming and celebrating relationships with other beings and getting to know them for who they are.

ms5h12 karma

Greetings! I was a postdoc at WashU in the mid-90s and it’s terrific to see you here. Do you have thoughts on how to improve science education for non-scientists so they can be better consumers of scientific information?

panbanisha38 karma

For sure! I'd start with kindergarten, put a colorful timeline of the history of nature in the classroom surrounding the 4 walls near the ceiling, perhaps leaving gaps between early star formation and sun formation, and have the same timeline in every classroom after that. I would have this story explored at increasing levels of detail as the grades progress. Humans are narrative beings -- we live in stories, think in stories. An exercise on drawing and identifying the parts of a leaf is boring; the story of the history of leaves is intriguing.

ExRockstar9 karma

Ursula Goodenough? Were you a Bond girl?

panbanisha2 karma

As in James Bond? Saw a couple of movies but I eschew violence in any context, even in movies, so that was it for James Bond.

vandermude8 karma

You "celebrate the mystery and wonder of being alive". What is life?

panbanisha17 karma

A living being is a self, with aims -- self-maintenance, self-protection, self-repair, and self-replication -- the goal being to counteract the inherent tendency to fall apart.

vandermude6 karma

Where do those aims come from?

panbanisha7 karma

If they didn't exist, the entity wouldn't be life. It's a closed loop.

OpportunitySevere5945 karma

What is the most important takeaway you want people to have from reading your book and looking into Religious Naturalism?

panbanisha18 karma

Celebration of our critterhood! A home-coming.

godsbegood4 karma

Hi Professor Goodenough, how does your view of Religious Naturalism align or disalign with the view of animism (i.e. that all creatures are living beings and that humans exist within nature and are not separate from it)? Do you believe humans have been given stewardship over nature?

panbanisha10 karma

Animism has several usages which I try to parse in my book, but I, and RN, am fully in accord with the the fact -- I'd call it a fact -- that all creatures are living beings and that humans exist within nature and are not separate from it. We weren't "given" stewardship over nature in the biblical sense, but given the mess we've made of things, I would say that we now have the responsibility to remediate these messes and steer towards sustainability.

godsbegood2 karma

Thank you kindly for your answer. If I may ask for a follow-up question. How do you integrate Indigenous beliefs/religions and knowledge systems in RN?

panbanisha6 karma

Indigenous peoples crafted their wisdom traditions in the context of the natural world, and their core insights as to the interrelationships and interdependencies of all creatures, and the sacredness of the planetary matrix from which we arose, are fully shared by the RN orientation.

lainelect4 karma

I’m just learning about you and your work for the first time. It appears that you care deeply about religious naturalism. Could you briefly explain whether one must accept a set of dogmas to call oneself a religious naturalist? And could you also tell us whether you think existing religions can coexist with science?

panbanisha13 karma

RNists are called to accept our current science-based understandings of the natural world, in full recognition that these understandings will broaden and deepen, and occasionally be supplanted with more accurate understandings; these are not dogma;dogma, n., a principle or set of principles laid down by an authority as incontrovertibly true. Existing religions vary in their comfort with these understandings. The recent Laudato Si from Pope Francis, for example, is fully immersed in a science-based worldview.

jerekdeter6267 karma

But what you just described is naturalism, is it not? I don't understand what makes it religious naturalism. I've seen your other comments, I know you are making a distinction between "religious" and "religion". But the only definition of "religious" that does not explicitly pertain to religion is: treated or regarded with a devotion and scrupulousness appropriate to worship. And devotion and scrupulousness are traits of every good researcher.

Can you help me understand?

panbanisha3 karma

So what adjective would you use to describe feeling states, in the RN framework elicited by the natural world, such as awe, reverence, gratitude, compassion, humility, and assent?

borgsux4 karma

What is the greatest mystery about human evolution?

panbanisha13 karma

I'd say it's how our particular mode of communication, called symbolic language, works, and its role in generating our robust presence of an I-Self.

ulykke3 karma

Hi Professor! what has been the biggest surprise of your academic research so far? A moment or notion that shook you to the core?

panbanisha6 karma

I guess I'd pick our discovery of the gene/protein called MID that determines whether the alga we were studying, called Chlamydomonas, mates as a "male" or a "female" during its sexual cycle. We knew from prior work that such a system was present, but we figured out how it worked!

EducationTodayOz3 karma

what is the worst pun anyone has made from your name?

panbanisha3 karma

Third grade boys playground sing-song: "Ursula is bad-enough" They thought it was SO funny.

MBDowd3 karma

Ursula, not sure if you didn't see my previous two questions or just have no interest in responding to them.

So I'll simplify what I'm asking...

Q: How does your religious naturalist worldview help you understand and emotionally cope with challenges of our times?

panbanisha5 karma

Lots of interest in them, but lots of questions coming through and only one brain and 10 fingers!

Response to the simple version: IMO the challenges are best met -- perhaps can only be met -- by a large, hopefully eventually planetary, "movement," which we can call RN, where their reality is met head-on and their solutions sought with the fervor and commitment that we have historically accorded previous challenges via our religious premises.

MBDowd6 karma

Wow, thanks! (This response allows me to infer your response to the more in-depth questions. NNTR to them.)

Connie and I could hardly be further from your sense of things; and that's okay. :-) If you're interested in our perspective, my recent 50-minute presentation for the Canadian Association for the Club of Rome, "The Big Picture: Beyond Hope and Fear" is the best articulation of my/our RN sense of things. (This post covers similar ground in text form.)

At some future date, if you're game, Connie and I would enjoy discussing the above video with you. (But it's totally okay with us if you're not interested).

Love you!

P.S. Just noticed your comment about your older brother winning the Nobel Prize for lithium batteries. Awesome!! When I read that aloud to Connie, her response was, "Wow, given that, of course she can't be a doomer or post-doomer. She has to be a techno-optimist... good for her!" :-)

panbanisha5 karma

I'm for sure a techno-optimist, as I lay out in my book. Technology has played a big role in getting us into this mess but if monitored wisely rather than willfully, it can hopefully help to move things forward. And yes, I've watched and admired your video!

comicsnerd3 karma

I am very curious to you being the President of the Religious Naturalist Association. What is that?

In my country (Netherlands) a Naturalist is a person who likes to walk around naked. So, Religious Naturalist, is that some secret association of women and men worshiping Eve & Adam and trying to simulate Paradise?

How does that link to being a professor in Biology?

panbanisha4 karma

In English, the word for a nakedness-loving person is Naturist, not naturalist.

The link is www.religious-naturalist-association.org.

Being a professor of Biology is my job!

Pvt_Johnson2 karma

What do molecular eukaryotic algae look like?

Also, do you also do lichen, or are you an algae baby through and through?

panbanisha4 karma

Google eukaryotic algae, hit Images, and your mind will be blown. They've come up with a stunning array of shapes and sizes and colors.

I just published 6 papers on lichens, so they are very dear to my heart. They are, as you made know, mostly filamentous fungi who recruit specific green algae and a diverse population of bacteria into a single edifice. There are lots of good on-line descriptions on how this is set up.

Brasscogs2 karma

Hi Ursula! Why is it, do you think, that decoding the human genome hasn’t lead to the significant medical advancements it seemed to promise at the outset?

panbanisha9 karma

Oh but it has! The genome itself is just a list of the genes we have, and a list doesn't provide advancements, but it tells us about our proteins, many of which turn out to carry mutations that participate in disease. The major advances made in understanding and treating cancer in the last decade, for example, are largely founded on this list.

Eulers-Gem-812 karma

What actions can ordinary people take that would have the most effect in helping our planet?

panbanisha3 karma

Hey, we're all ordinary people! You can probably generate this list as well as I can: turn down your thermostat and wear a sweater; reduce or eliminate meat consumption; drive a hybrid or electric vehicle; purchase local organic foods when available; buy what you need and want what you have; join local groups engaged in habitat protection or the advocacy of sustainable practices; participate in peaceful protests when a local natural habitat is threatened with "development." And, of course, vote for the right people and support international foundations seeking remediation. As anthropologist Margaret Mead is said to have put it: "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it's the only thing that ever has."


What makes green algae (I don't want to butcher the official name) a good candidate to make bio diesel?

panbanisha5 karma

Unicellular green algae have proven to be terrible candidates to make biodiesel. In our lab we made them so fat that they floated, but they were too small and too few of them to make it remotely worth the effort!

mikeytruelove2 karma

Considering you're someone who studies evolution, I'm wondering:



panbanisha4 karma



mikeytruelove1 karma

That's fair. Evolution wise, we suck. But still.... Platypus.

panbanisha6 karma

Nah, we don't suck -- we're pretty amazing actually. But when viewed through the eyes of a platypus, we probably look pretty weird.

boraxo8081 karma

Ursula, you quoted from Heidegger’s “introduction to Metaphysics in your opening statement. “Why are there beings at all instead of nothing.” In that book he argues that Europe was straddled between two industrial technological powers (russia and America) which were homogenizing culture and threatening being itself. His answer was historicity and culture which ended up being used as an ideological prob for the landed gentry in Germany to convince poor working class people to vote for the national socialist party. How does religious naturalism avoid the fascist pitfalls Heidegger fell into when RN is promoting a worldwide ideology based in the rule of scientistic technocrats?

panbanisha3 karma

We're not remotely promoting a rule of scientistic technocrats and I'm saddened that my text comes across this way. We're promoting an immersion in our science-based understanding of nature and using these understandings to develop a sustainable planet. The first recorded poser of this question wasn't Heidegger but Leibniz (1646-1716) whose answer, unsurprisingly, was God.

Intraluminal1 karma

Are there any mitochondrial "missing links?" That is, are there any prokaryotes that donate ATP when living as endo-symbionts in other prokaryotes?

panbanisha2 karma

I don't know of examples where a prokaryote lives inside another, but they may share ATP in biofilms Microb Ecol. 2021; 81(3): 645–656.

DatsunL61 karma

Is the name Religious Naturalist Association used because it abbreviates to RNA? I like the arguments for RNA being a precursor to DNA and the letters seem fitting for such an organization.

panbanisha2 karma

Yup -- we say "pun intended" on our website www.religious-naturalist-association.org

SPDSKTR1 karma

Are you related to John Goodenough, the solid state physicist? If so, what's your favorite dessert? If not, what's your favorite dinner entree?

You did say ask you anything!

panbanisha2 karma

Yes. Favorite dessert is pecan pie.

JessTheTwilek1 karma

Hi Ursula!

Is Religious Naturalism similar to secular humanism? How does it differ?

panbanisha3 karma

They have different histories. RN has always centered on a non-theistic concept the natural world, whereas SH, while acknowledging our science-based understandings of nature to be the case, has been far more focused on human-human interactions in a non-theistic framework. Much of their focus has been on church/state/school parameters.

TheMaster7811 karma

Hello! I would like to get into the field of biology but have little education past high school and have little idea where to start? Do you have any recommendation

panbanisha3 karma

There are lots of wonderful on-line resources, but albeit this may sound self-promoting, I've tried my best to present an accessible account of biology in my book The Sacred Depths of Nature, which may hone your interest in particular topics that you can then google. The book will hopefully be at your library if you don't want to buy it; if they don't have it, suggest that they order it!

jerisad0 karma

Are you familiar with modern druidry as a nature-based spirituality? It seems to share a lot with your practice, maybe with an extra dash of mythology and metaphor mixed in.

I don't think I'm the right person to really question you, but if you're ever interested I think you'd be an amazing guest on their podcast Druidcast. The best episodes are the ones where they interview academics.

panbanisha3 karma

I fully resonate with Celtic traditions, and Indigenous/Pagan in general, in their nature-basedness. As you know, the mythology/metaphor can often spill over into a full belief in the supernatural, where I for one can't go, and there's at least one group, the Atheopagan Society https://theapsocietyorg.wordpress.com/ where the goal is to keep the supernatural out.

I'd love to join that podcast if you'd like to recommend me.

borgsux0 karma

How do you evaluate claims that Covid-19 came about due to "gain of function" experiments?

panbanisha8 karma

I've not yet read this report -- I think it came out yesterday -- but given how the Wuhan market vs. Wuhan lab interpretations have bounced back and forth, my instinct is to wait until there's a firm consensus and then look at the data.

Few_Presentation91990 karma

The National Park system has been an amazing vehicle for people understanding and appreciating our natural environment. However it has also been a source of some controversy. What are your feelings on this?

panbanisha2 karma

I'm not familiar with the controversy -- please explain or send links and I'll then try to comment!

jon1103340 karma

I just applied for a US military shaving waiver citing a humanist moral objection based on the order's historical basis of prejudice.

If denied, what do you think my next step should be? IG, EO, or full blown lawsuit?

panbanisha1 karma

Sorry, this is above my pay grade!

Blinky_0 karma

I used your excellent textbook in university, almost four decades ago.

To date, I’m not sure if I should pronounce your name as good-enow or good-enuff. Maybe you addressed that here, so I will scroll through (throw?).

Anyway, thanks for your contribution to my education!

panbanisha4 karma

enuff! No need to scroll!

NotAChristian666-1 karma

Ugh... why on earth would anyone be a scientist while also believing in a deity?

Have you no serious comprehension of the scientific method?

It's quite disturbing, as well as disgusting. Learn to let go of whatever indoctrination brought you to this clearly illogical belief.

panbanisha4 karma

I have no belief in a deity.

NotAChristian6661 karma

Then please, respectfully, explain the concept of "religious naturalism".

panbanisha4 karma

Well, I've been offering explanations throughout the day so you might start by reading some earlier postings. I've also written a book which you can probably find in the library. This website should help www.religious-naturalist-association.org

Religious does not necessarily entail believing in a supernatural god(s).

cksfleming-4 karma

I am certain that homo sapiens and most, if not all mammalian life will become extinct in the foreseeable future. Do you agree? What do you think and\or feel about this?

panbanisha5 karma

On what basis do you base your certainty?