Chris Jeynes's Other Interests and Links

Doubtless few will wish to know,  but this is a good place to put this stuff!

Science and Creation

    This is my abridgement of Stanley Jaki's 1974 book of the same name.  It is a full-scale historical demonstration of the opinion that is now widespread amoung historians of science,  that Christian belief underpins the scientific method.  Scientists believe that the world ("the Universe") is not unintelligible in principle,  and moreover that we are capable of understanding it.  This corresponds to the Christian beliefs that God is not capricious,  and that we are made "in the image of God",  that is,  able to appreciate God's handiwork.  Putting it another way,  God is rational,  and people matter.
    In particular,  Jaki is interested in the philosophical attitudes to time in the various civilizations he considers,  and the enormous philosophical importance of the Christian insistence on finite time.  (He considers Islam at length,  from a philosophical point of view -- the Muslims also believe in Creation and the Day of Judgement;  but he concludes that they never succeeded in shedding their Aristotelianism.)  
    I think that this is an important basic book,  but that Jaki's expression was rather obscure (and also presupposed rather a lot of knowledge of the reader).  I have tried to clarify and simplify it and hope that some may find this abridgement useful.

A Christian Cosmogony

    Comogony is an account of the creation of the universe,  where cosmogeny is an account of the evolution of the universe.  This is a wide-ranging essay considering how to read the Creation accounts in Genesis.  I think that a correct reading is one that the original author(s) would have recognised and is,  rather surprisingly, completely consistent with modern cosmology. 
    Curiously,  although many assert that religious beliefs are not falsifiable in a Popperian sense,  it turns out that a central assertion of the monotheistic faiths (Judaism,  Christianity,  Islam),  the Creation,  is now conventional wisdom in physics.  The Big Bang theory is supported by the standard theory of the Cosmic Microwave Background with the resulting observed H/He ratio in the universe,  and the observed abundance of isotopes explained by stellar nucleosynthesis.  The singular nature of the Big Bang is emphasised theoretically by the Penrose/Hawking gravitational collapse theorem of 1970.  Thus,  the Christian assertion of Creation can reasonably be said to be proved!

Page last updated by Chris Jeynes 9th February 2011
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