This week, Seniors thought about the relationship between science and faith during an assembly talk with Steph Bryant of The Faraday Institute for Science and Religion, a Cambridge-based research group focussed on the understanding of religious beliefs in relation to the sciences.
Ms Bryant, who studied the Natural Sciences at Cambridge University, guided the pupils through a frothy chemistry experiment to illustrate the idea that science is primarily about observation, testing, and measurement. It can help us understand the world around us by explaining how things work; but we need to look elsewhere when we want to explore questions about meaning, purpose, and the ‘why’ of things. Religion, by comparison, is meant to examine questions like ‘Does life have a purpose?’ or ‘Why is there a universe?’ Because science is unable to fully answer these questions, she explained, having a broader perspective that considers many different fields of inquiry—including religion, morality and ethics, history, and aesthetics—can give us a richer and fuller understanding of the world.
She encouraged the young people to be open to many different fields of study that they will encounter at school, which will all feed into the bigger questions about life and where they fit into that bigger picture.
Many thanks to Ms Bryant and the Faraday Institute for an inspiring and thought-provoking assembly.