SCIENCE AND BELIEF




Webmaster & Author: Antonino Cucinotta
Graduate in Physics
Copyright 2002 - All rights reserved

Webmaster ed Autore: Prof. Antonino Cucinotta
Dottore in Fisica
Copyright 2002 - Tutti i diritti riservati





Science and belief: two sisters for a long time divided because of the humility lack of scientists and because of the little diffusion of the scientific knowledges.
Why do we keep them still separated ?
Why don't we recognize that both are marvellous gifts given by God to men by the Holy Spirit?
We say that science and belief are divided because the science operates in the field of the immanent reality and the belief in the one of the transcendent reality, because we don't understand that both are the faces of the same medal :the truth.
Why don't we consider that both science and belief are paths leading us toward God?
Why don't we consider that a man going along the way of the science, if he recognizes with humility the cognitive limits of himself in the respects of the intimate essence of the immanent reality, he necessarily will recognize the Absolute? Why don't we admit that the scientific knowledges, that day by day are accumulated in all the laboratories of the world owing to the continuous, huge employment of human and economic resources, they are nothing but superficial knowledges of the reality,that are only useful to build up some apparently coherent models of the immanent reality that constitutes the object of the scientific research?
The intimate essence of the natural phenomena escapes, because the scientists working in the fields of the fundamental research, are satisfied with only finding laws and models that result coherent in comparison with the experimental method ( Galilean ), guaranteeing only the possibility of verifying and foreseeing physical phenomena, without any reference to their intimate essence.
The methods of the fundamental (pure) scientific research , that concerns only the discovery of the structure of the physical world, without reference to any application,remind us what sustained the German philosopher Emmanuel Kant ( Koenigsberg, 1724-1804 ), for which the scientists succeed in acquiring only a phenomenal knowledge of the nature, that is a knowledge concerning exclusively everything is appearing, whereas the intimate essence of the reality, that it may be only intelligible (the so-called noumenon),escapes, outside the structure of the space-time,that shows the phenomena as they are seen by us across some "coloured lenses".
The actuality of the Kantian point of view may be underlined by the following examples:

Example I - The incompatibility between classical mechanics and quantum mechanics, connected to the dual nature of matter, that is both particle-like ( in classical mechanics ) and wave-like (in quantum mechanics).
The mechanics describing the microcosm phenomena, the quantum mechanics of Heisenberg, Schroedinger, Dirac, is entirely disjoined from the Galileo-Newton classical mechanics, that is valid instead only when considering the common mechanical phenomena, concerning the microscopic bodies and materials systems, that are able to be seen, touched, modified and submitted to physical measures, by the common mechanical tools ( graduated rulers, balances, dynamometers ).
Microscopic systems instead ( atoms, molecules, crystals ), obey to the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, and prevent to the observer to know entirely and at the same time the speed and the position of each elementary particle ( electrons, protons, neutrons ) of which they are constituted; in fact, taking into account the complementarity principle of Niels Bohr, the presence of the observer performing a measure changes the quantum state of the system; therefore it is always necessary to perform two measures, in different times, the first, for example, to measure the speed of a particle, ignoring entirely its position, the second one to measure the position of a particle, ignoring entirely its speed ( we remember that it is impossible in quantum mechanics to define the trajectory of a particle ).

Example II - The incompatibility between classical electrodynamics and quantum electrodynamics, connected to the dual nature of the electromagnetic radiation, which is both wave-like ( in classical electrodynamics ) and particle-like ( in quantum electrodynamics ).
We can make some considerations that are like the ones made for the mechanical phenomena.
In fact the electromagnetic radiations ( light, infrared and ultraviolet rays, X and g rays) behave classically, as waves, in the macroscopic electromagnetic phenomena ( reflection, refraction, interference, diffraction, polarization ), and as particles ( photons or quanta of radiation ) in the microscopic electromagnetic phenomena ( emission and absorption of electromagnetic radiations by atoms, molecules and crystals ).

Example II - The incompatibility between the theory of the general relativity (the theory of the gravitation ) of Einstein and quantum mechanics.
Till now all the attempts made to reformulate the theory of the gravitation in accordance with the principles of quantum mechanics have been unsuccessful.
The curved space-time of the gravitational theory of Einstein is till now escaped to all the quantization attempts, and have been evidenced many difficulties to formulate an unified theory ( TOE -The Theory Of Everything) of the four fundamental forces of the nature ( gravitational, electromagnetic, subnuclear weak and subnuclear strong ).
In fact,whereas for the electromagnetic and subnuclear weak forces, it is possible to show theoretically ( the electro-weak theory of Weinberg, Salam, Glashow ) and to verify experimentally ( Rubbia, 1983 ) that they are unified by only one force ( the electro-weak force produced by the exchange of the W+, W- and Z vector bosons), till now from the unification are excluded both the strong subnuclear force acting among the quarks by the gluon exchange, inside the theory of quantum chromodynamics, and the gravitational force, whose quantization requires the exchange of quanta of gravitational energy (gravitons). Today,the various theories of unification formulated to represent in an unitary scheme the four forces (the theory of the supercords and the supersimmetric theories ,or theories of the superworld ) haven't been confirmed by experiments, while many scientists hope for discovering by the new LHC (the Large Hadron Collider at the CERN ) the phantom bosons of Higgs, that would allow to explain the mass values of the particles described by the standard model.

Example IV - The incapability to explain the mystery of the dark matter.
The more recent cosmological observations on the galaxies lead to admit that their peripheral zones contain an amount of matter much greater of the one visible, with the aim of explaining the stability of their structure with respect to the high orbital speeds of the peripheral zones.
From this observations it is deduced that in the universe the amount of the visible matter constitutes only the 5 % of the total mass that it is necessary, on the base of the present cosmological theories, to justify the measures of the leaving speed of the galaxies, calculated from the Doppler red shift of the their spectral lines.
Of what particles is made dark matter? Are these particles neutrinos or other exotic particles, that is particles that don't constitute the common matter?

The considered examples are useful to give only a vague idea of the extreme complexity of the problems that the physicists try to resolve in researching an unitary theoretical scheme that consents to describe in a coherent way the innumerable aspects of the structure of the Creation, without introducing too much specific sub-theories,as the general relativity to describe huge concentrations of matter ( galaxies and clusters of galaxies ) and the quantum physics ( quantum mechanics, quantum electrodynamics and quantum chromodynamics ), to describe the microcosm. We feel that with the increasing complexity of the theories formulated to study the infinitely small objects, are coming out microcosmic sceneries with an increasing complexity, as if the microcosm were constituted by many structures, one encapsulated within another, till the attainment of the typical lengths of the Planck scale (4,1* 10-34m).
The physical world appears always more and more mysterious with the increasing energy of the particle supercolliders.
Therefore men feel a mysterious limit to their need of knowing , and they continue to use the "coloured lenses" of the space-time to attempt to understand with their infinitely inadequate mental tools,everything is beyond to the limit of knowledge to which the Creator allowed them to arrive.
So men arrive to a crossroads: to continue to ostentate their hybris(pride,haughtiness,presumption)to try to understand everything they aren't able to understand, or to recognize humbly, by the belief, the omnipotence of the Creator of the universe.

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