Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

8/14/2013 (8 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Science does not invalidate faith.

Atheists are excited, rats are afraid, and believers are being confronted with nonexistent conclusions. Researchers say they are able to recreate the well-documented "near-death experience" in laboratory rats and that is has a physiological cause.  Atheists are delighted, claiming this proves God doesn't exist. The authors of the study aren't going there.

Do rats pray as well? Would that serve as proof for God?

Do rats pray as well? Would that serve as proof for God?

Article Highlights

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

8/14/2013 (8 months ago)

Published in Technology

Keywords: science, faith, atheism, near death, rats, experience


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A study which made headlines yesterday concerned research into near-death experiences in rats. Researchers seeking to study the enigmatic phenomenon hooked rat's brains to sensors, then proceeded to kill the rats by inducing cardiac arrest.

In the 30 seconds following the stopping of the heart, scientists noticed a dramatic increase in brain activity. These brainwaves are the same ones that are related to consciousness in humans.

What they learned is that the dying experienced heightened brain activity, not less as is commonly expected. The rats apparently experience hyper-awareness rather than immediate death. It's thought this may be the same for humans.

Humans who have had near-death experiences frequently claim to see a tunnel of light and to experience out-of-body sensations. This is universally reported across cultures and religions, and appears to be a common human experience.

In fact, near death experiences have been artificially induced in humans before. Decades ago, test pilots reported similar experiences during high-stress maneuvers and training.

That scientists believe they can recreate these experiences in rats leads some to conclude that the mystery is solved and no God is required. This is a ridiculous conclusion and it is not one reported by the research.

It should also be noted that a conclusion specific to rats doesn't necessarily mean it will also be true for humans.

But about those atheists.

Science has shown us many things. It has demonstrated that disease is caused by parasites and pathogens. It has explained human origins and the creation of the universe and Earth. Science is a useful tool, but it does not rule out the existence of God, nor does it invalidate the personal experiences and faith-based beliefs of billions of people.

To take a gruesome study involving rats and extrapolate that to conclude there is no God is quite a stretch.

Just as diseases have biological explanations, so also must near-death experiences have the same. This does not replace God as the creator or heaven as the destination for the faithful. Indeed, we have learned from science that God has used physical laws to rule the universe. We have also documented exceptions, which we understand as miracles.

Both science and God happily coexist because science is an expression of God Himself. To use His laws and our limited understanding of them to reach an inherently flawed conclusion is the height of hubris.

So temper your enthusiasm. Science is best when it is used to better understand  the world about us, but when it is turned against theology as a weapon, it will always fail. Indeed, despite the volume of scientific knowledge compiled to date, faith remains strong, right alongside it.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for April 2014
Ecology and Justice:
That governments may foster the protection of creation and the just distribution of natural resources.
Hope for the Sick: That the Risen Lord may fill with hope the hearts of those who are being tested by pain and sickness.



Comments


More Technology

New plan by FDA will help critically sick get early access to care Watch

Image of The FDA's new program aims to get test products into the hands of patients who have no other treatment options.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration proposed a new program aimed at speeding up approvals for medical devices for patients who have no other treatment options available, on April 22. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Called the Expedited Access Premarket ... continue reading


Miracle substance grown in common household blender Watch

Image of Graphene's incredibly strength and flexibility make the material highly useful in manufacturing electronics.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A team of scientists from Ireland and the UK may have just discovered a quick new way to mass produce the wonder material grapheme. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Published in the journal Nature Materials, the team outlines how they managed to produce a quantity ... continue reading


STEM CELL BREAKTHROUGH? Have researchers achieved 'therapeutic cloning' of adults? Watch

Image of The ultimate goal must always respect the dignity of every human life

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

For the first time, researchers claim to have achieved "therapeutic cloning" of adults, which involves producing embryonic cells genetically identical to a donor. It marks the first step in what is called reproductive cloning, or producing a genetic duplicate ... continue reading


DEATH FROM SKIES: Asteroids have missed major cities by sheer luck, scientists say Watch

Image of One asteroid, believed to have hit Earth 3.26 billion years ago, was 36 miles wide, which scientists said was six times bigger than the blast which wiped out dinosaurs.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Barring an incident in Russia last year, asteroids striking the Earth have had very little impact on human life so far that large-scale asteroids have struck Earth three to ten times more often over the past decade than previously thought. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


A NEW EARTH? Astronomers discover remarkably similar planet to our own Watch

Image of The Goldilocks zone, or habitable zone, is the belt around a star where temperatures are ideal for liquid water to pool on a planet's surface.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Astronomers have announced that they have found a planet that is remarkably similar to Earth. Called Kepler-186f, the planet 1.1 times the size of Earth orbiting a star - "only" 490 light years away. Kepler-186f is the first planet discovered with the right ... continue reading


EYES TO THE HEAVENS: Astronomers say there may be a 'new Saturn moon' Watch

Image of The disturbance in the edge of the ring is 20 percent brighter than its surroundings and about 750 miles long and six miles wide.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

All eyes are on the heavens as astronomers theorize that another moon for the ringed planet of Saturn may be on its way. If the heavenly body in the rings of Saturn is confirmed, it would make for the planet's 63rd moon. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


IS THE SECOND COMING NIGH? Four blood moons this year all occur on Jewish holidays Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

As climate change wreaks havoc worldwide, and relations between the U.S. and Russia reach a low point over Ukraine, some Christians say that the phenomenon of the "Blood moon" may mean that Christ's return is rapidly approaching. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading


Will Alibaba devour Facebook? China's massive Alibaba is coming to conquer the United States Watch

Image of Yahoo's dominance has since dwindled as Alibaba has since grown into a global powerhouse.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Ali Baba for those in the west usually means the storybook leader of a gang of fearless, 40 thieves. But this will soon change. A massive e-commerce site from China, Alibaba, with revenue larger than Amazon and eBay combined has decided to go public in the ... continue reading


Drone images reveal more about mysterious buried village in New Mexico Watch

Image of Drone images have captured fascinating new details about a buried Native American village in New Mexico.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Drone images have captured fascinating new details about a buried Native American village in New Mexico. Thermal images captured by the small drone allowed archaeologists to peer under the surface of the desert floor, revealing never-before-seen structures. LOS ... continue reading


New 'Star Wars' gun fires shells seven times the speed of sound through concrete -- 100 miles away Watch

Image of The rail gun will be mounted on high-speed vessel the USNS Millinocket for sea trials in 2016.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A futuristic lethal new weapon capable of firing a shell at seven times the speed of sound has since been successfully tested on land. Conjuring up images of iconic sci-fi villains as Darth Vader, researchers have called the new rail gun as being of 'Star Wars' ... continue reading


All Technology News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 3:1-10
1 Once, when Peter and John were going up to the ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 105:1-2, 3-4, 6-7, 8-9
1 Alleluia! Give thanks to Yahweh, call on his name, ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 24:13-35
13 Now that very same day, two of them were on their ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 23rd, 2014 Image

St. George
April 23: Pictures of St. George usually show him killing a dragon to ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter