19 Religious Notions Science Has Disproved but Still Persist Today

Despite numerous scientific evidence to disprove certain religious beliefs, some continue to persist, serving as a source of hope for many today. These notions were once considered absolute truths by people in different ancient civilizations and cultures but surprisingly cling to some institutions and groups’ collective consciousness today. Though it’s important to understand that these religious notions have already been debunked, perhaps it’s helpful to still keep them in mind as their existence highlights the complex interplay between faith and science and culture and the human psyche.

A Great, Global Flood Inundated the World

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The story of Noah’s Ark, a captivating Biblical narrative, has been the subject of scientific investigation. While some accounts tried to make sense of this Biblical tale by suggesting that the great flood was caused by a sudden flooding of the Black Sea by the Mediterranean over 7,000 years ago, newer and more modern research, conducted with rigorous scientific methods, suggests that no such event actually occurred. Though this is the case, flooding did happen, but it didn’t inundate the whole world.

The Israelites Were Enslaved in Egypt to Build the Pyramids

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If you watch documentaries or movies involving anything about the pyramids, you’ll usually see Israelites enslaved by Egypt, carrying tons of rocks to build the pyramid. However, in truth, the Israelites weren’t the ones who built the pyramids; in fact, there’s no concrete archeological evidence to conclude that the Israelites were enslaved—let alone in Egypt. The pyramids, in hindsight, were built by Egyptian locals who were paid their due wages.

Illness Is Caused by Spiritual Forces and Can Be Cured by Prayer

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When you or someone you love is sick, ill, or even dying, you’re usually left with no other choice but to hold onto hope, and this is where prayer comes in. However, though it can calm you and offer you similar benefits as meditation, prayer alone cannot cure your illness—especially if it’s something life-threatening like cancer.

Within the Human Body Is an Intangible Soul or Spiritual Essence

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Different religions claim the existence of the intangible soul or spiritual essence that persists with or without the human body. However, some scientists disagree with this theory. For example, Richard Swinburne, a philosopher of religion, was quoted by Live Science saying, “Maybe, of course, a soul can’t function on its own; maybe it can only function when associated with a body.” He explained that souls need bodies to hold onto because for someone to interact or recognize others, they need “different public characteristics.”

Sickness or Disability Is a Result or Consequence of One’s Sin or Malevolent and Evil Spiritual Forces

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Until today, there are claims that mental illnesses are manifestations of demonic or evil possessions. However, as science constantly proves, mental health issues, as well as other physical ailments, are all caused by some biological, genetic, or environmental factors. In turn, treatments for these conditions also need science-based medicine and care—not just prayer.

Humans Shouldn’t Get Vaccines Because They Are Harmful

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Today, more and more religious institutions are becoming more open to vaccinations, thinking it’s an act of love or charity for the common good. Sadly, some minor religions and institutions, such as the Dutch Reformed Church and Christian Scientists, are still against vaccinations.

There Are Miracles That Defy Any Earthly Force or Knowledge

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Miracles are a matter of faith, and religious leaders argue that they can’t be tested by scientific means because they can’t be predicted or replicated. However, for scientists, that’s precisely the point—how can you prove something like miracles is true? Scientists need natural explanations or concrete evidence to believe something is factual. So, if a phenomenon can’t be explained naturally or lacks concrete, reliable evidence, it’s simply a scientist’s nature to doubt it.

The Flat Earth Theory Is Something to Be Considered Factual

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Many believers in the existence of a flat Earth quote Biblical passages to support their claims. However, science has repeatedly proven that the Earth is a sphere, similar to other planets. The Arizona State University notes, “If we look out when standing on the ground, we can’t see that far; we can’t look out into the distance and see a town that’s miles away, and a ship will slowly start to disappear from view as it gets farther away. This is because the Earth is round; things in the distance are not visible because there is a curve to the landscape.”

The Earth Is a Relatively Young Planet That’s Only a Few Thousand Years Old

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There is a vast difference when you compare the Earth’s age in terms of the Bible’s narrative and science’s claims. As far as the Bible is concerned, based on Genesis, the Earth, the universe, and everything around it is about 6,000 years old. Conversely, according to science, the Earth is estimated to be around 4.45 billion years old, as proven by 4.03 billion-year-old rocks discovered in Canada in 1999.

The Earth Is Considered the Center of the Universe

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Religious people who believe in the existence of a flat Earth most likely think that the Earth is at the center of the universe. After all, per the Bible, the Earth is stationary and at the center of everything; it’s also set atop pillars. As scientists have proven, however, there is no center of the universe because the universe has no boundaries. In terms of the solar system, the Earth is still not at the center; instead, it’s the Sun.

Humankind Arose From Just Two Handcrafted Individuals

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Alongside the story of creation comes the story of humankind. It’s believed that humans are descendants of Adam and Eve, who were created in God’s image and likeness. However, many theories sought to disprove this claim. One of the most famous and widely accepted theories is Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution, in which he stated that humans evolved from quadrupedal apes.

The Sun and Moon Were Created After the Earth

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Biblical accounts and religious leaders believe God created the Sun and the Moon after He created Earth. In fact, according to Genesis 1:14-19, the Sun and the Moon were made on the fourth day of creation. The Sun, however, is around half a billion years older than our planet. It’s the same age as the solar system.

The Sky Is a Dome Full of Water That Causes Rain

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Another Biblical claim that’s been contested is that the sky is a dome full of water, which also causes rain. This perspective has shaped the worldview of Hebrews before. However, scientific evidence from different fields of science—meteorology, space exploration, fluid dynamics, and more—contradicts this claim.

Dinosaurs Once Roamed the Earth Alongside Ancient Humans

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Young Earth creationists believe that the God of Christianity or Judaism created everything in existence. Some also think that humans and dinosaurs once coexisted on Earth. However, this claim cannot be more untrue, as dinosaurs were extinct for almost 66 million years before the very first humans even made their mark on the planet. Many believe this theory is where TV shows and cartoons like The Flinstones got their idea.

Biological Evolution Shouldn’t Be Considered True and Factual

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Biological evolution and Charles Darwin’s theory directly contradict the Bible’s narratives. For Christians and Catholics, for example, God is the creator of the world we live in and also of humankind. Conversely, according to biological evolution, we came or evolved from quadrupedal apes.

Homosexuality Is a Choice Rather Than a Natural Inclination

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According to the Bible, there are only two genders, and therefore, homosexuality is a sinful choice that goes against the natural order of things. There are even Biblical passages, for example, in Romans and Leviticus, which condemn homosexual behavior. For science, though, homosexuality isn’t a choice; rather, it’s an intrinsic and natural aspect of human diversity that can be influenced by several biological factors, such as genetics, neuroscience, and more.

Astrology and Other Supernatural Phenomena or Events Are Real

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Lots of religions and cultures believe in astrology and supernatural phenomena. For example, this is pretty common in countries practicing Hinduism and Buddhism; it was also quite popular during Egyptian times. However, according to science, there is no concrete and reliable evidence to support the claims of astrology.

Everything in the World and the Universe Was Created in Just Six Days

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Another famous Biblical narrative is the story of how God created the world. In the book of Genesis, the creation of the world around us—from the seas to the mountains to the animals and even to humans—is described in detail. However, scientists simply don’t believe in this claim. According to them, everything started from the Big Bang—a theory explaining that the death of a star, which started from the expansion and explosion of hydrogen gas, is what led to the creation of life.

There Is No Room for the Existence of a Higher Power in the Realm of Science

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Science has never tried to disprove the existence of God. Instead, it’s only concerned with the observation and study of the natural world so that we can better explain everything around us. Ultimately, science seeks to better understand questions with empirical, tangible answers—and God, or any other higher being, is beyond that scope.

Read More: 20 Common Traits Poorly Educated People Usually Have

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Poorly educated individuals may exhibit certain noticeable characteristics that set them apart from others. On the flip side, some may also compensate for their lack of education by pretending to be knowledgeable in certain areas. This behavior is often a way for poorly educated individuals to maintain their self-image and self-esteem.

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20 Behaviors and Traits That Are Dead Giveaways of Having Low Intelligence

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Speaking loudly, being overly confident, or even gossiping can all be signs of someone having low intelligence. However, by recognizing these markers, people can become more proactive in addressing their limitations and weaknesses, eventually improving their overall mental and emotional capacity. Read on and learn more about the top 20 dead giveaways of low intelligence!

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20 Things You’re Doing That Make You a Bad Neighbor

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People have different personalities; that’s a fact. When you move somewhere with a tight-knit community, you will get to know many people who will either clash with your personality or make you feel like you’ve found a new friend. However, no matter what it is, remember to establish boundaries. If you don’t, you might soon see a lot of bad blood between you and other people in the community!

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20 Signs You Have Little to No Emotional Support in Your Relationship

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Navigating a relationship without enough emotional support can feel like being caught in a storm without shelter. Constant feelings of isolation, misunderstanding, and loneliness indicate a loss of balance in the emotional aspect of your relationship. Thankfully, it’s not too late to get help because we’ve gathered the top 20 signs that can help you determine whether or not you’re receiving the emotional support you need for a healthy, thriving relationship.

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20 Christian Practices That Confuse and Puzzle Others

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All regions differ in some way. Catholics collect saint cards and plan their vacations around religious sights, and Buddhists believe in karma and reincarnation. Like them, Christians also practice some things that are simply unheard of or puzzling for others. They practice tithing, cast out demons, and more!

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Author: Karen Danao


Karen is a writer and also a marketing and advertising professional. Beyond the keyboard and the screen, she is someone who’s out to enjoy every bit that life has to offer!

Poetry, philosophy, history, and movies are all topics she loves writing about! However, her true passion is in traveling, photography, and finding common ground to which everyone from different cultures can relate.