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John, I think this stuff misses the mark. Even if the historicity of those incidents, and events is misunderstood it does not change the fact that religion and science are utterly at odds.
Politically, religious institutions strive to maintain and augment power. Whatever stands in their way is crushed. Heresy is not hard to define in Islam and Christianity. Anything contrary to the dogma is heresy. Whether it is behavior or ritual or contrary view of reality, oppose fiat and be stoned or excommunicated or some fine punishment.
Accomodation occurs as a result of a diminution of power. And it is so evident that christian sects try to utilize any wisp of science that they think bolsters their version. Islam is stronger and less apt to accomodate. If you live long enough watch what happens.
Religious indoctrination negates the chance that so many will become scientists. A ready world view and a ruler on the hand for asking questions is a small part of the way that religion steers its adherents away from science.
When religious institutions had science it was because they did not realize the danger it posed to the suzerainty of the beast. When religion is all there is it is unfair to give them credit for producing scientists. Science made a beginning inspite of religion not because of it.
And we all know that science and religion are conceptually at odds, utterly. I wont bore you with the 6th grade analysis.
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