Tag Archives: science and religion

Combining Religion and Science: Hallelujah Acres and the Quest for Healing

By Annie Blazer

Hallelujah Acres is a health ministry and social movement aimed at evangelical Christians in the United States. The organization encourages an alternative to conventional medicine and to the standard American diet (which they call “SAD”). Hallelujah Acres advocates a vegan, raw foods diet (food is not heated above 115°F) as God’s plan for perfect eating and as a curative treatment for most illnesses and diseases. My research shows that, for the most part, believers turn to Hallelujah Acres when conventional medicine fails to cure their ailments and that belonging to the Hallelujah Acres community affirms a sense of distinction and moral superiority that resembles evangelical ideology generally.[i]  This essay explores how the group demonizes and criminalizes conventional medicine in order to present the Hallelujah Diet as medically and scientifically superior. Continue reading

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The Problem with the “Conflict Thesis”

By Jeffrey Guhin

The relationship between science and religion is often divided into ideal types.  John Hedley Brook proposed conflict, separation, and interaction (1991: 2-4) while Ian Barbour suggested conflict, independence, dialogue, and integration (1997: 77). Stephen Jay Gould developed the concept of “non-overlapping magisteria” (NOMA), in which “each domain of inquiry frames its own rules and admissible questions, and sets its own criteria for judgment and resolution” (1999: 52-53). In contrast to the new atheists’ belligerent insistence on conflict (e.g. Dawkins 2008; Harris 2008), the vast majority of writings about science and religion tend to fall within these lines of conciliation, whether via separation or some form of amalgamation. Discussions of the conflict thesis often draw a parallel between religious fundamentalists who draw scientific data from religious texts and those practitioners of “scientism,” who develop (not falsifiable) metaphysical and ontological commitments out of falsifiable scientific evidence (Midgley 2002 [1985]; Barbour 1997: 78-84). Yet these groups are not entirely parallel, as the latter certainly acknowledges and seeks to exacerbate the conflict while the former insists that, if understood correctly, there is actually no conflict at all. Continue reading

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Filed under Essay Dialogues, Politics of Science