Is noetic science supported by the Bible?

In Philosophy, noetic (from the Greek word meaning “mental”) science is a branch of metaphysical philosophy concerned with the study of mind as well as intellect.  Noetic science topics include the doctrine of the agent/patient intellect (Aristotle, Averroes) and the doctrine of the Divine Intellect (Plotinus).

Based on the claims of the Institute of Noetic Sciences, this school studies “how beliefs, thoughts, and intentions affect the physical world.” While traditional science is based on external observational factors like objective evaluation, measurement and experimentation, noetic science receives information from internal subjective factors such as feelings and intuition. And in spite the fact that information in noetic science cannot be proven, noetic scientists treat it as real.

Noetic science has been connected with the New age belief system, parapsychology and metaphysical philosophy. These studies attempt to discover the power and source of human intelligence, and how thoughts cause physical effects. Coming from this school of thought, noetic scientists study telekinesis, precognition, and self-healing.

Like Gnosticism, which teaches acquiring special mystical knowledge as the means for salvation without objective evidence, noetic science is not backed by scientific evidence nor the Word of God. The Bible teaches that truth should be based and tested by the law of God and the testimony of the prophets and not by fleeting feelings and impressions (Isaiah 8:20). For the Word of God (2 Timothy 3:15) helps us to “be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:17).

The concept of noetic science is not new at all. From the beginning, Satan tempted Eve to attain a higher state of knowledge by disobeying God’s command and eating from the forbidden tree saying, “You will not surely die.  For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil” (Genesis 3:4). But the result of Eve’s disobedience to God was the utter debasement and destruction instead of elevation to the divine standard (Genesis 3).

The Word of God forbade dabbling with the New Age system because it contradicts many of the biblical teachings such as the belief in One personal loving God (Psalm 86:15; 2 Peter 3:15), man is not divine (Romans 3:23), salvation can be attained through Christ (Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8-9), high standard of morality (Exodus 20), and many other beliefs.

Check out our Bible Answers page for more information on a variety of topics.

In His service,

BibleAsk Team

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