Supernatural phenomena (as if)
-- provable/disprovable via science?
(Top Posts - Science - 033106)

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Of interest, the prayer study linked to at the
end of this post was funded by the John
Templeton Foundation, an institution set up
to, among its other goals, try to establish a
justification for (and promotion of) religion
based on scientific methodology.

Its founder/head is described in the following
article:
http://www.slate.com/id/1822/ ...

Excerpts:

The "Templeton Prize for Inspiring Movies
and TV" (now renamed the "Epiphany Prize")
gives $25,000 to movies and TV shows that
acclaim faith. ...

... Templeton's moralism is a sidelight to his
much more ambitious goal: the reunification
of science and religion. ...

... Since the Renaissance, science has out-
stripped faith, and Templeton views this as
a great tragedy. He believes that theologians
must match science's advance with spiritual
research, and attempt to rejoin the soul and
the brain. Religion should harness the tools
of science to make "progress." ...

--- end excerpts ---

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Prayer study

Published online: 31 March 2006
http://www.nature.com/news/2006/060327/full/060327-16.html
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Excerpt:

Distant prayers do not help people recovering
from heart surgery and could even cause them
more health problems ... The new study is the
largest and most rigorous to put the power of
distant prayer to the test, using similar proto-
cols to those used in clinical trials of new drugs.

...

The investigators found that praying made no
difference to the health of patients who didn't
know whether they were being prayed for or
not.

But the group who knew that they were being
prayed for was approximately 14% more at
risk of complications, mainly abnormal heart
rhythms. Perhaps, the investigators suggest,
this was because it made them more anxious.

The study, which was funded by the John
Templeton Foundation, an organization that
sponsors research examining science and
religion, is published in the American Heart
Journal.

...

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