"Our failure to discern a universal good does not record any lack of insight or ingenuity, but merely demonstrates that nature contains no moral messages framed in human terms. Morality is a subject for philosophers, theologians, students of the humanities, indeed for all thinking people. The answers will not be read passively from nature; they do not, and cannot, arise from the data of science. The factual state of the world does not teach us how we, with our powers for good and evil, should alter or preserve it in the most ethical manner."
When I first heard of Non-overlapping magisteria, I rejected it out of hand. Now begining to see the benifit of it for several reasons:
First it completely removes the conflict between science and religion because they are not seen as asking the same questions of the universe. While science ask questions like, how big are you?, how old are you?, what are you made of?. Religion ask questions like, what does it mean?
Finding the moral plane of the the universe a blank slate, we began to create meaning. Religion is a creation of meaning, a moral frame around which to construct our place in the universe. It gives us a sense of not only what we are but who we are.
Religious leaders in the western world made a huge mistake when they gambled on science. They stacked all the chips on science to prove the existance of God. Before this time the Non-overlapping magisteria-al view was held by Bishop and parishiner alike. Religion forgot to pursue meaning instead of facts. And it has failed us all.
In the global competition of who can come up with the most compelling answer to "Why?" we have produced some pretty awfull results. But this is not the end product, it will change as it has been changing. If we can get it back to doing what it is good at, we will all be better off.