Can scientific explanation ever make reference to God or the supernatural? The present consensus is no; indeed, a naturalistic stance is usually taken to be a distinguishing feature of modern science. Some would go further still, maintaining that the success of scientific explanation actually provides compelling evidence that there are no supernatural entities, and that true science, from the very beginning, was opposed to religious thinking.
Science without God?: Rethinking the History of Scientific Naturalism shows that the history of Western science presents us with a more nuanced picture. Beginning with the naturalists of ancient Greece, and proceeding through the middle ages, the scientific revolution, and into the nineteenth century, the contributors examine past ideas about "nature" and "the supernatural." Ranging over different scientific disciplines and historical periods, they show how past thinkers often relied upon theological ideas and presuppositions in their systematic investigations of the world. In addition to providing material that contributes to a history of "nature" and naturalism, this collection challenges a number of widely held misconceptions about the history of scientific naturalism.
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