A little comic relief

Mooney in Playboy is funny, you must admit. The tasteful illustration is funny, given Kirshenbaum’s (laudable) concerns about sexism. The title is funny. The post is funny. The comment is funny. It’s all funny, except for the article itself, which is more goofy than funny.

It could be a good piece, if it were re-done, by someone with a different agenda. It could be about the charge of discovery without the baggage of “reconciling religion and science.” It could be about the wonder of nature without the axe-grinding of

Doherty is among a growing number of nonreligious researchers who view scientific inquiry itself as a spiritual quest—a trend that has the potential to dramatically upend the idea that science and religion must be in conflict.

As Jerry Coyne puts it,

There is absolutely no doubt, unless you’re obtuse, that the purpose of Mooney’s piece is to show the commonality of scientists and religious people—as both are “spiritual”—and thereby make common cause of the two magisteria.

And the next thing you know you’re trying to explain how Adam and Eve can be both metaphorical and real, or whatever the latest dodge is.

PZ is also not convinced.

…trying to coopt an honest scientific appreciation of the wonders of the universe as support for religion is a dishonest attempt to prop up bogus superstitions with an appeal to emotions — any emotions.

It contaminates the emotions, too. Do I have to look over my shoulder every time I gaze slack-jawed at a sunset now? I hope not.

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