Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Did the Christian Dark Ages hamstring science?

Null presents us with an interesting graphic today:


The graph was produced by, in a (rather ranty) article challenging the claim advanced by some apologists that "without Christianity, we would not have modern science, medicine or hospitals."

The Christian Dark Ages represents the only time in the history of Europe where scientific advancement not only halted but went backwards. The hole left by the Dark Ages bears the imprint of scientific intolerance. Imagine where scientific advancement would stand today if not for the scars left by Christianity.

During the Age of Enlightenment, people began to wake up. Many freethinkers and scientists rejected orthodox religion and replaced it with unitarianism, deism, or non-theistic philosophy. During the 1800s and after, scientists no longer had to fear religious persecution in any form. As never before in the history of mankind, scientists began to reject theocracy entirely. And what happened as a result of the freedom from Christian influence? Science literally exploded with new discoveries! Since the early 1900s, the majority of the world's productive scientists held no theological beliefs, and the percentage of nonbelievers continued to rise every decade.

The idea that Christianity founded modern science and medicine comes from pure arrogant myth. Christianity, by its very biblical nature, represents the antithesis of science.