To discuss this statement first we must look at the definition of understanding. Religious believers and scientists would probably differ in their definitions and therefore disagree from the beginning. A religious person would perhaps say that understanding the world means knowing how to be a good person, how to live a good life and fulfill God’s plan. A scientist would probably disagree, saying that understanding the world is having a wide knowledge and good comprehension of how the world works including theories like evolution and understanding why and how things occur. Another slight problem with this statement is its implication that one cannot be a religious believer and a scientist when in fact there are many religious scientists who seem to have science and religion existing harmoniously in their lives. If we are defining understanding as understanding how to live a good life, then I believe that the Bible and Religious Believers do understand more about the world than Scientists do.
Religious Believers have a better understanding of how the universe and mans place in it was set up, but it’s hard for people to understand correctly because it’s not in scientific terms, it’s in myths and metaphors. You can’t see it with our available scientific instruments, it’s something you experience. Religious Believers have direct guidance from their Holy texts, e.g. for the Jewish faith, the Torah on how to live their life. They are taught, by the Ten Commandments, that they are not to steal, not to commit adultery and not to murder.
One criticism of scientists is that a number of assumption are made to give parameters to an experiment. Also perception can be fallible, as we expect to see things, so we see them. We don’t expect to see them, so we miss them out. In response to this, in the parable the invisible gardener; where the religious believer trusts that the gardener came but couldn’t be seen and the other (scientist) believing that there couldn’t be a gardener because there was no empirical evidence of this. This shows that even though there was no evidence of the gardener or God they still hold a belief, whereas the scientist had to be proven. Some claim that believers only want hope.
Religious Believers hope for the return of their “invisible gardener”, while New Atheists (Richard Dawkins and his followers) have no expectations of a new life after death, thereforelive their lives without fear of an almighty God smiting them down. In this situation, one could argue that the Religious Believer is playing it safe, however they still understand the world better, in many cases they see it as an almighty being’s creation.
In conclusion, I believe that, although Scientists have proof of the age of the earth, and that they have proven many facts of the Earth, They do not have as good guidance as Religious Believers do on understanding life.