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kenneth rodman
2005-Oct-19, 09:04 AM
Well, I'll place in my two cents.
It really doesn't matter what anyone thinks, what ever happened those billions of years ago can only be guessed at. None of us were there and none of us were eyewitnesses. We are all entitled to our opinions and no matter who prevails in the debate, it still does not change what really happened.
There is indisputable evidence that there was life during that time, so we know that can't be argued. The bible records that the times of Adam and Eve was only about six thousand years before Christ. So here we are stuck with an apparent contradiction.
It really amazes me of how relatively stupid the traditional fundamentalists presents their biblical point of view in opposition to the evolutionists. No one it seems has ever taken a serious look at the bible and has taken the time to work the figures and cultural differences to a point to where it makes sense.
Two of the greatest errors that occur between the evolutionists and creationists are 1) God created the world in seven days and 2)The days of that time were different. This is not what the bible says. It says in the Beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Then the very next verse is what has caused so much confusion. "...and the earth was without form and void..."
This should have caught the attention of every honest biblical student on the planet. The words "form and void" in the hebrew is "Tohu va Bohu" www.blueletterbible.org/tmp_dir/words/8/1129692743-7099.html <http://www.blueletterbible.org/cgi-bin/words.pl?word=08414&page=1> www.blueletterbible.org/tmp_dir/words/9/1129692957-1911.html
Literally translated, a barren, useless, ruined, empty, voided, empty, chaotic, formless.
To say God created something this way should have caught our attention.
*********************************
Isa 45:18 For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I [am] the LORD; and [there is] none else.
**********************************
In Isa it says God did not create it in vain. That phrase, "...not in vain..." is the same word used in Gen 1:2 "Tohu".
www.blueletterbible.org/tmp_dir/c/1129693443-3995.html#18
Already there is an apparent contradiction. We can either discredit the bible for having errors or take into consideration that there is an error either in our own understanding or there is a translation problem. If this is The Word of God, and God is perfect, then the bible has to be perfect.
And of course there is. And it's mostly because of the modern western way of thinking. The bible was written in the east in a different language, and in a different culture. Hebrew is unique in that it is one of the oldest known languages. Many times gender in pronouns were not defined. Not like our Modern English; he, she, his and hers. Most of the time it was always neuter. Also, the English verb "Be" is interesting because we have many variations in which it is used. "Be, are, is, was, and were." This is not the case in Hebrew. Hebrew only had two words used that would closely relates and that is "become or became". Many times it was translated "it came to pass".
In Genesis 1:2 it says "...and the earth was..."
That word "...was..." is what has caused so much confusion. Had it been translated "...became..." we wouldn't have the problems we have today with evolution and creationism.
www.blueletterbible.org/tmp_dir/words/1/1129694130-177.html
According to the bible, God didn't create it that way it became that way. And if you will look closely, God did not create on each day. If you will read closer is says...
vs 3 "... and God said ..."
vs 6 "... and God said ..."
vs 9 "... and God said ..."
ect.
It is in the sense that God was fixing what was originally created that had became a lifeless wasteland. God didn't create light in verse 3, it was already created, it became ruined and God spoke it back into order.
Once that is understood, it becomes clear that there was eons of time between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2. Here is where all of the physical evidence of evolution can logically be placed. God creates the Heaven and Earth, eons of time, (along with dinosaurs and the neanderthal) it becomes a ruin, and then God speaks it back into order.
If we are going to believe in God, and use the bible as our evidence, then let's either use it correctly and accurately, or toss it.
I would rather believe the logic that comes from an atheist than some of the stupidity that comes from the religionists. If were gonna talk bible, lets talk bible.
If you really want to get to the spiritual side of it, and why the Earth became a lifeless wasteland, then the real drama of what goes on behind the scenes gets really interesting.
From a biblical point of view, we are currently living in the Second heaven and earth. The first was done away. (became a lifeless wasteland). The third is yet to come.
I just wish people would dump the religion and get honest and serious when it comes to the bible.

Faultline
2005-Oct-19, 02:07 PM
Well, I'll place in my two cents.

[biiiiiig SNIP]

I just wish people would dump the religion and get honest and serious when it comes to the bible.

I totally lost how this is supposed to relate to the evolution/creation argument. Seems like you're just shoring up the creationist case and not showing how it applies to the debate. This is a scientific website and we discuss theories here, not faith.

Where did you think you were posting this, anyway?

The Bad Astronomer
2005-Oct-19, 03:53 PM
I will jump in and say that this sort of conversation is allowed by the rules here, but I want everyone who participates to have a care. For example, kenneth rodman, calling fundamentalists "stupid" is against the rules here. Please don't do it again.

crosscountry
2005-Oct-19, 04:35 PM
I think he meant it as an obervation.


joking aside I'm not sure where he got those ideas

novaderrik
2005-Oct-19, 04:41 PM
almost reads like someone trying to grasp Intelligent design, without admitting it is Creationism that is just using evolution as a tool to make us in His image.

Gillianren
2005-Oct-19, 08:04 PM
I'd like to point out that we have a lot of evidence supporting evolution. That we don't is what Creationists and IDers believe, as if we had evidence, they would be wrong.

Well, we do and they are. We don't have to go back to the beginning of life on Earth to observe evolution, as it continues to happen all the time. Further, the fossil record shows evolution as well. We have lots of evidence. Some people choose not to acknowledge it, which I do not believe is their right. You can believe whatever you want, sure. But you can't throw out facts without other people calling you on it.

m13_higgs
2005-Oct-19, 08:47 PM
I don't object to using the Bible as a source for some historical information, but I believe that digging for some scientific meaning in it is fruitless (no Adam and Eve pun intended).

And I agree with Gillianren. Disregarding facts never helped anyone get to the truth.

Faultline
2005-Oct-19, 08:57 PM
Plus, this thread started with the words, "Evolution and Creationism," and, "I'll place in my two cents."

It was actually about $20 worth of words. Only .02 dealt with evolution. Like I said, it was mostly about cleaning up how the bible says the earth was created.

Evolution says nothing about how the Earth formed. It says nothing about how life began. It is how life changed over time to its current form!

Wolverine
2005-Oct-19, 09:29 PM
In any such discussion, I feel compelled to add a link to the must-read FAQs (http://talkorigins.org/origins/faqs-mustread.html) at TalkOrigins (http://talkorigins.org/).

Sticks
2005-Oct-19, 09:33 PM
This is just Gap Theory (http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/442) re-visited

Another link (http://www.apologeticspress.org/rr/reprints/creagap.pdf)

seohtu
2005-Oct-19, 11:43 PM
Note that the OP doesn't speak for "all of us" (Christians) any more than the BA speaks for all scientists. History shows numerous instances wherein biblical texts were used as arguments for/against different scientific positions, and, to date, I believe most contradictions have been settled by the faith adapting to the facts, under the arguably valid premise that mis-interpretation was the source of the conflict to begin with. I disagree with the biblical interpretation presented by the OP, but that doesn't mean "mainstream" Chrisitanity (and Judaism, and Islam - they all share common roots) will not eventually embrace a stance something along those lines. (I hope not, but it may happen)

I think the fundamental point that is being missed is that the *science* behind evolutionary theory *is valid science* and should be taught as such, and as the theory itself "evolves", it should continue to be taught as an active participant in the scientific process. Children are taught that rainbows are caused by refraction of light through water molecules. It's an individual choice whether or not to associate said refraction to a divine promise, and a family's perogative to teach that association or not. However, it's not the school's place to teach that *as valid science*, any more than it is to teach creationism that way (or at all).

I don't understand the value of this thread in a scientific astronomy forum. How are the OP's remarks supposed to be addressed scientifically? What astronomical basis can be used as a common ground for this discussion, and what objective is supposed to be achieved by it? Religiously, there is much fuel for discussion (possibly heated discussion) in the post, but scientifically.. ? I don't see it.

Sincerely,
Derrick Baumer

Gillianren
2005-Oct-20, 02:56 AM
I disagree with the biblical interpretation presented by the OP, but that doesn't mean "mainstream" Chrisitanity (and Judaism, and Islam - they all share common roots) will not eventually embrace a stance something along those lines. (I hope not, but it may happen)


I don't think it will. I think Creationism and Literalism is part of a very minor subsect that is vocal enough to convince people that it isn't. I think most people of faith can be successfully taught science and still have that faith. I'm not sure if not being able to is a flaw in the faith or the intellect.

kenneth rodman
2005-Oct-20, 02:56 AM
my main point was to express that in my opinion to evolution is a sound theory and creationism is not; and if you beleive creationism is valid because of your faith, and use the documents of your faith to validate your beliefs, (keep in mind I realize the non-scientific aspect of this) then use those documents correctly or dont do so at all.

Huevos Grandes
2005-Oct-20, 05:15 AM
Relax.

This debate is just further proof (yes, PROOF) that documents like the Bible, Qu'ran, etc., can't be used very effectively in scientific debates. They are contradictory, primarily intended to be used as lessons anyway, and have been translated many times-- at least two major times in the Bible's case. Plus a truth that is commonly overlooked- they were written by men, unpredictable and often deceitful creatures. C'mon this "Lord" guy didn't like to write things anyway- he just materialized stone tablets on mountaintops when no one else was around, and similar stuff.

As for my $0.02, "Creationism" is a self-defeating science; it asks- nay, demands that the student ignore scientific method and instead make assumptions based instead on faith. I could just as easily throw out physics if I wanted to justify the existence of a wind god, and ignore everything man knows about atmosphere+gravity, lunar tidal effects, etc. "Intelligent Design" is a wolf in sheep's clothing designed to deceive for a very, very specific purpose, and it doesn't even merit discussion.

paulie jay
2005-Oct-20, 05:29 AM
I'll give a very brief 2 cents.

Evolution can explain why men have nipples while creationism can't.

seohtu
2005-Oct-20, 06:38 AM
This debate is just further proof (yes, PROOF) that documents like the Bible, Qu'ran, etc., can't be used very effectively in scientific debates. They are contradictory, primarily intended to be used as lessons anyway, and have been translated many times-- at least two major times in the Bible's case. Plus a truth that is commonly overlooked- they were written by men, unpredictable and often deceitful creatures. C'mon this "Lord" guy didn't like to write things anyway- he just materialized stone tablets on mountaintops when no one else was around, and similar stuff.
Bolds mine.

I don't see the "proof" you refer to. Trying to read the thread from a scientific basis, I don't see that any real attempt other than the OP to use the Bible "effectively" in what hasn't really been a debate at all yet.

In another forum, I would gladly take you on one-on-one about each "contradiction" you think you have found, and would very much enjoy the opportunity to educate you somewhat about the lineage of biblical source documents and translation methods involved. The *theological* concept of divine inspiration is another area you could, if you chose, gain greater understanding in. The tone of the entire post, including the final jab at "this 'Lord' guy" was unnecessary. I'll tell you what: I'll keep my religious bent from taking me on a jeremiad about the arrogance of human "scientific understanding" if you'll refrain from your inappropriate characterizations of theological issues under the guise of science.

I enjoy this forum very much, and enjoy scientific discovery and trying to wrap my mind around obscure concepts, the more obscure, the better. But I don't think anti-religious comments are any more appropriate than religious ones (they are, after all, the same thing) in this context.

Sincerely,
Derrick Baumer

seohtu
2005-Oct-20, 06:51 AM
I don't think it will. I think Creationism and Literalism is part of a very minor subsect that is vocal enough to convince people that it isn't. I think most people of faith can be successfully taught science and still have that faith. I'm not sure if not being able to is a flaw in the faith or the intellect.
Well spoken. I've never had a problem reconciling my faith with scientific discovery. The knowledge of how many (sometimes very convoluted) interpretations of faith issues there are combined with the fluid nature of the scientific method have let me off easy, I guess: I'm certain that nobody knows, but it's human nature to want to know and to think it's figured the important details out. What would a person think of the state of faith or science today if it were described to them 100 years ago? It is the vocal minority on both sides, I think, that allow an "issue" to exist at all between the two realms.

As for the OP's attempt at uniting creationism with evolution, I think it's a distraction, faith-wise, to even consider it, and since no scientific issues were raised (the post was 100% theological to my reading), it's a distraction on the science side as well.

Sincerely,
Derrick Baumer

Thanatos
2005-Oct-20, 07:27 AM
I see this as nothing more than assertions based on unsupported beliefs. I think God would be very disappointed were we to give up on trying to solve the puzzle of this magnificent universe. That is our purpose in being alive, IMO.

parallaxicality
2005-Oct-20, 07:39 AM
Creationism is not religion, nor is it even theology. The Bible doesn't mention dinosaurs, glaciation or meteorite impacts, so trying to pretend that it does is just straw-grasping. ID is even worse from an Abrahamic perspective, since it doesn't even require God. One of ID's biggest supporters is the Raelian movement.

Huevos Grandes
2005-Oct-20, 11:03 AM
I don't see the "proof" you refer to. Trying to read the thread from a scientific basis, I don't see that any real attempt other than the OP to use the Bible "effectively" in what hasn't really been a debate at all yet.

In another forum, I would gladly take you on one-on-one about each "contradiction" you think you have found, and would very much enjoy the opportunity to educate you somewhat about the lineage of biblical source documents and translation methods involved. The *theological* concept of divine inspiration is another area you could, if you chose, gain greater understanding in... ...I'll tell you what: I'll keep my religious bent from taking me on a jeremiad about the arrogance of human "scientific understanding" if you'll refrain from your inappropriate characterizations of theological issues under the guise of science.

*Sigh. It's your religious bent that prevents you from applying science at all.

It's not just me, sir. You and every other believer of an "invisible man in the sky" think you can somehow apply theological documents to real-world subjects, such as current events, government, and science. I'd wager all my wealth that you think that at least parts of the Qu'ran, The Book of Mormon, the "Dead Sea scrolls", and many other sacred religious texts are bunkem (my bold). You attack my charge that the Bible isn't effective as a scientific document ?

These documents serve as rules for worshipping a god (or gods), lessons of morality, and sometimes a crude historical text. The "debate" has been raging for hundreds and thousands of years, with many people paying the penalty with their lives, in some cases. Though you are right that it's never been in earnest- zealots never do so. Let me demonstrate a brief summary... proof (or at least corraborating evidence)?

A. Problems in Translation: Unless you're a follower of the Gideons, most Christians ascribe to follow biblical text from the King James version (KJV). The "original" Masoretic Text has been kept by the Jews, yet is not trusted. The original Byzantine texts used to pen the KJV were from different manuscripts, kept by various early Christian orders. Several translation errors arise from the translation into Greek into what has principally become known as the most reliable copies, found at Mt. Athos in Greece. The first manuscripts were written in aramaic, or perhaps some other language, but we'll never know, since they're lost in time. But here are some various papers on the topic:

1. "Can You Get There from Here? Problems in Bible Translation", Christian Century, June 22-29, 1988
2. Differences Between Bible Versions, Gary F. Zeolla, Authorhouse, 2001 ISBN: 0759625018
3. Bible, Babel and Babble: The Foundations of Bible Translation, Dr. Scott Munger, International Bible Society, 1999 ISBN: 1-56320-300-6
4. Accuracy of Translation: The Primary Criterion in Evaluating Bible Versions With Special Reference to the New International Version, Robert P. Martin, Banner of Truth Binding, 1998 ISBN: 0-85151-735-8

--many, many more. This issue is part of the reason there is such a thing as a "biblical scholar", sir.

B. Contradictions: In the Bible, they are legion. I could pull out numerous examples, such as Europeans eating the flesh of the cloven-footed animal, or Christ on the one hand smiting all the heathen himself, and then the next day Jesus telling everyone to "turn the other cheek". But I won't. Here's a simple one:

Leviticus: 18:22: (to paraphrase) Homosexuality is an abomination and... "thou shalt surely kill him".

Exodus: 20:2-17: Commandments, "Thou shalt not kill".

Romans: 1-7, I: to follow man's laws is of the Lord and to respect the leaders and the laws and their (actually His) ministers"

You could maybe see how it could be confusing. There are similar arguments about adulterers, heathens, and those unwilling to sacrafice their best animals to God. Which passages should I follow, and which shall I- uh, ignore ? ...and this is just the "morality" stuff. The contradictions involving science are even more extravagant.

I'll grant you that the Bible and other religious texts might be written in another setting and from a different mindset. One example might be that as we can't properly conceive of time, God creating the heavens and Earth in a week seems impossible, because maybe one (1) day = 1+ billion years. OR- maybe God creating Eve out of Adam's rib was some author's inventive way of describing "evolution by means of nature selection". But surely that would mean that some level of interpretation would be necessary to properly "understand" such texts, before we can begin to apply them the real-world situations, if at all. Who shall interpret them- you ?


The tone of the entire post, including the final jab at "this 'Lord' guy" was unnecessary... ...I enjoy this forum very much, and enjoy scientific discovery and trying to wrap my mind around obscure concepts, the more obscure, the better. But I don't think anti-religious comments are any more appropriate than religious ones (they are, after all, the same thing) in this context.

I meant no insult to your faith. It clearly includes deeply-held convictions that you will either embrace, abandon, or struggle somewhere betwixt the two, for your adult life. Your 'Lord' guy-character exists for you, and I respect that, but I owe him NO allegiance- and it is allegiance in this instance that would command respect. Please try not to deny me the right to express my scientific views, on the viability of a religious document as scientifically relevant, particularly if there are mountains of not-just-taken-on-faith evidence to the contrary.

ToSeek
2005-Oct-20, 02:20 PM
Huevos Grandes, seohtu: This is not a place to discuss the validity or consistency of the Bible except (very carefully) with regard to scientific issues. I think both of you have done a good job of remaining reasonable, but let's not go much further with this, okay?

aurora
2005-Oct-20, 03:52 PM
Creationism is not religion, nor is it even theology. The Bible doesn't mention dinosaurs, glaciation or meteorite impacts, so trying to pretend that it does is just straw-grasping.

It also doesn't mention bacteria, photosynthesis, electricity, extremophiles, galaxies, black holes, eliptical orbits, the Kuiper belt, Mammoths, Koalas, Antarctica, fluid dynamics, nuclear physics, the periodic table, the Jet Stream, plate tectonics, genetics, viruses, statistics, optics, mineralogy, the Gulf stream, ...

I have never understood how someone could think it was a science book.

Faultline
2005-Oct-20, 04:29 PM
It also doesn't mention bacteria, photosynthesis, electricity, extremophiles, galaxies, black holes, eliptical orbits, the Kuiper belt, Mammoths, Koalas, Antarctica, fluid dynamics, nuclear physics, the periodic table, the Jet Stream, plate tectonics, genetics, viruses, statistics, optics, mineralogy, the Gulf stream, ...

I have never understood how someone could think it was a science book.


Keep in mind that all of those concepts are manmade.
Or Lucifer, as some would say.

If I've stepped over a line, I'll gladly delete this.

Sticks
2005-Oct-20, 04:39 PM
The Bible was never meant to be a science book, that was never it's purpose.

Monique
2005-Oct-20, 06:40 PM
The Bible was never meant to be a science book, that was never it's purpose.
I agree. Result is science must rejecte bible as scientific document.

Gillianren
2005-Oct-20, 08:00 PM
I agree. Result is science must rejecte bible as scientific document.

Not quite. After all, we don't have to "reject" Shakespeare as a scientific writer; he just wasn't. To reject him as such implies that anyone thought he was in the first place. At its creation, the Bible (and all other religous texts) were intended to be about the faith. It is people applying it as a science textbook that was a twisting. To people of Judeochristian faith, the Bible has its place. But even for them, its place is not in the science classroom.

And while those of us who are not may not owe that God allegiance, we still on this board owe His followers politeness, which includes not insulting their God.

Monique
2005-Oct-20, 09:04 PM
Not quite. After all, we don't have to "reject" Shakespeare as a scientific writer; he just wasn't. To reject him as such implies that anyone thought he was in the first place. At its creation, the Bible (and all other religous texts) were intended to be about the faith. It is people applying it as a science textbook that was a twisting. To people of Judeochristian faith, the Bible has its place. But even for them, its place is not in the science classroom.

And while those of us who are not may not owe that God allegiance, we still on this board owe His followers politeness, which includes not insulting their God.
Is how I mean, you say more clear. I do not intend insult any religion. I am Buddhist, separate from science.

Faultline
2005-Oct-20, 09:12 PM
Au Francais, mes amis!

Monique is French, and probably didn't mean the word reject like we think.

C'est bon!

m13_higgs
2005-Oct-20, 10:27 PM
If a god of some kind wanted to give us scientific information, wouldn't he/she have some so explicitly rather than requiring us to interpret ambiguous half-references? Wouldn't he/she have given us some kind of fact that we know for sure no human could ever have known at that time period? Why ambiguity instead of relativistic equations or instructions on how to build a solar panel?

parallaxicality
2005-Oct-20, 10:47 PM
Well, playing deity's advocate for a second, try explaining to an illiterate sheep farmer from the dawn of civilisation how a solar panel works and how to build one.

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-20, 11:17 PM
Intelligent Design vs. Baseballbat (http://www.livejournal.com/users/jpicon/833962.html)

seohtu
2005-Oct-20, 11:32 PM
Huevos Grandes, seohtu: This is not a place to discuss the validity or consistency of the Bible except (very carefully) with regard to scientific issues. I think both of you have done a good job of remaining reasonable, but let's not go much further with this, okay?
My apologies for miscommunicating my point, which you have stated more eloquently than I have - that this discussion needs to remain on a scientific footing (pretending, for the sake of argument, that the OP was a scientific topic rather than a theological one). The remainder of my post was reactive, prefaced with the caveat that I would gladly discuss the issues in another forum - a caveat that was apparently missed.

Should anyone (Huevos Grandes?) wish to continue the theological side of this discussion intelligently, sincerely, without riducule or hostile innuendo (from which I, also, will refrain), I would be happy to do so (or not) in PM or via email.


Not quite. After all, we don't have to "reject" Shakespeare as a scientific writer; he just wasn't. To reject him as such implies that anyone thought he was in the first place. At its creation, the Bible (and all other religous texts) were intended to be about the faith. It is people applying it as a science textbook that was a twisting. To people of Judeochristian faith, the Bible has its place. But even for them, its place is not in the science classroom.

You keep stealing my best stuff :D

In biblical days, science and religion were the same thing, and religious documents were, indeed, used as "scientific" sources as a means of explaining events otherwise unexplainable. The advent of a separate discipline of scientific inquiry removed this responsibility in large part from the shoulders of religious leaders, something most religions found disconcerting, to say the least. The fight to keep religion "in the loop" has sometimes been driven by a desire to maintain the power religious influence one held over the populace, and I agree this is wrong, but it is an equally galvanizing force when religion is attacked by the scientific community, especially when such attacks lack any form of theological foundation.

The effort to unite creationistic "theory" with evolution and the Big Bang is a *valid* (but IMO unnecessary) effort on the part of the religious community to reconcile discrepencies, something the scientific community rarely expresses interest in. I wonder what kind of progress could be made if more scientifically-minded people *were* interested in such reconciliation?

Assertions about what the Bible fails to mention, including helioseismology, quantum physics and much more, must take into account that the Bible is a collection of 66 short, topic-specific books written and copied in a day/era in which Kinko's did not exist. To provide a thorough treatise on every topic man could conceivably desire knowledge in would require a far more extensive document, so it can be assumed, IMO, that such has not ever been the Bible's intent.

[Omitting rest of post - getting far too long. Will resume if discussion warrants.]

Bathcat
2005-Oct-21, 01:59 AM
The divide between fundamentalist Creationism and science is, as I understand it, that many Creationists believe no evidence can ever disprove Creationism. The argument from authority, when referencing the Bible, is the supreme argument and rules all others.

By contrast, science counts evidence the supreme argument. Argument from authority is, in science, a very weak position.

The Creationist worldview is anti-scientific not because it opposes evolution theory or abiogenesis, but because its fundamental standards of proof are the opposite of scientific ones.

(Caveat: I do not speak of rationally sound, scientifically literate people of Christian or other faiths. I'm talking about the Jerry Falwells and Gary Norths of the world, to whom the Bible is literal word-for-word truth and no evidence can contradict it in the slightest detail.)

The link to astronomy, as I see it, is this: Evolution is the favorite target of Creationists because it directly contradicts a literal reading of the Genesis accounts. But if state legislators open biology classrooms to the supernatural Intelligent Design anti-science, then I suspect it will not be long before similar theological "theories" will be legislatively forced into cosmology as well.

Granted, the fundamentalist Christian attack on science is mostly a phenomenon of the USA. One might wish that it is the last gasp of medieval irrationality. But one suspects it has several gasps left.

Cougar
2005-Oct-21, 03:27 AM
In biblical days, science and religion were the same thing...In a sense, perhaps. There was no such separation. But one might as easily say there was just very little science... and a lot of religion and superstition.
....and religious documents were, indeed, used as "scientific" sources as a means of explaining events otherwise unexplainable.Your use of quote marks is certainly necessary in this context. It might be better to say that such texts contained largely unscientific explanations, but as social allegories and lessons they communicated to humans experiencing life's difficulties and travails, serving more their emotional needs rather than their intellectual curiosity.

Well put, bathcat.

crosscountry
2005-Oct-21, 05:03 AM
Intelligent Design vs. Baseballbat (http://www.livejournal.com/users/jpicon/833962.html)


Bravo

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-21, 07:57 AM
fundamentalists trying to get ID taught in schools is equivalent to Hitler invading Russia. (hopefuly, considering what it did to Germany)

Huevos Grandes
2005-Oct-21, 08:10 AM
Should anyone (Huevos Grandes?) wish to continue the theological side of this discussion intelligently, sincerely, without riducule or hostile innuendo (from which I, also, will refrain), I would be happy to do so (or not) in PM or via email.

I guess you aren't the Powerball winner, after all. :) I don't debate theology or politics with zealots; it's a waste of breath. But I respect your beliefs (though certainly not your religion, whatever it may be), and I encourage you to look for reason and proof, in all your life's travels.


The fight to keep religion "in the loop" has sometimes been driven by a desire to maintain the power religious influence one held over the populace, and I agree this is wrong, but it is an equally galvanizing force when religion is attacked by the scientific community, especially when such attacks lack any form of theological foundation.

I haven't heard of any Ph.D's grabbing pitchforks and heading for the Vatican, nor are there numerous reports of seminary students being forced to recant and drink hemlock. If discarding faith, religion, and forced obeisance in favor of reason, rationality and physical proof is wrong, then I suppose it constitutes an attack.


The effort to unite creationistic "theory" with evolution and the Big Bang is a *valid* (but IMO unnecessary) effort on the part of the religious community to reconcile discrepencies, something the scientific community rarely expresses interest in. I wonder what kind of progress could be made if more scientifically-minded people *were* interested in such reconciliation?

Why does there have to be a reconciliation ? I take it you mean that there needs to be a "compromise", of sorts, whereby the religious folk and theologians agree to soften the language and accept that evolution has been proven and is no mere "theory", and that the physicists, astrobiologists, etc. agree that some invisible man in the sky caused it all to happen, even though there's no proof. Humans are rational creatures, so why not let them think for themselves, instead of thrusting an incomplete set of beliefs, and insisting that if it isn't found in the great book, that it isn't true.


Assertions about what the Bible fails to mention, including helioseismology, quantum physics and much more, must take into account that the Bible is a collection of 66 short, topic-specific books written and copied in a day/era in which Kinko's did not exist. To provide a thorough treatise on every topic man could conceivably desire knowledge in would require a far more extensive document, so it can be assumed, IMO, that such has not ever been the Bible's intent.

Exactly. It's not a guide to how to repair a 2-stroke Evinrude outboard motor, or a tourist's atlas for visiting Torquay. No one would expect a book that explains god and his relationship with man to accomplish this. But efforts in the Bible to explain geologic events, environmental and animal biology and the nature of the Universe (you know- big subjects that a majority of people care about) fall flat. The primary reason for this is that the men writing the various books knew nothing about the topics they wrote. At the time, the innards of a man could not be appreciated enough to cure most ailments; the sight of a comet in the sky or a river flooding had to have great significance- usually something like: God is angry at Jebediah for not eating all of his peas... or, hey- God wants us to go and kill the Assyrians.

The Bible or any other religious handbooks are simply grossly inappropriate tools for instruction of scientific theory. This does not diminish the importance of these books, nor would I ever attempt to do so, which is what you are probably mistakenly taking offense at.

Bathcat
2005-Oct-21, 06:35 PM
...is that it is duplicitous.

Here's the situation as I see it:

All of the arguments for intelligent design rest on demonstrations of ignorance: because we cannot explain scientifically how some biological mechanism work or how they came into being, then that is evidence for a supernatural mechanism.

However, applying the same reasoning to intelligent design itself reveals much greater deficits in that hypothesis.

We understand, in a scientific sense, a great deal about how cells work, how genetics works, how enzymes, proteins, and membranes function.

There is no scientific evidence demonstrating how a Designer works, no scientific evidence of the specific supernatural mechanism It may use, no evidence for what a Designer may be composed of or where It may reside, no scientific evidence for Its origin or natural history.

If we judge evolution and Intelligent Design on ID's own favored terms of argument -- by the scientific questions each hypothesis leaves unanswered -- then Intelligent Design still comes out by far the less-supported, most unlikely hypothesis. Because there are far, far more unanswered questions inherent in the concept of a Designer than there are in evolutionary biology.

----

I realize I am preaching to the choir, but I was just listening to a news report on the modern Monkey Trial underway in Dover, Pennsylvania, where a judge is hearing arguments on presenting Intelligent Design in biology classrooms. It's disturbing to witness the attempt to insert obvious non-science into a public-school science curriculum. It's like deliberately teaching misinformation.

Monique
2005-Oct-21, 06:58 PM
....and religious documents were, indeed, used as "scientific" sources as a means of explaining events otherwise unexplainable.

Your use of quote marks is certainly necessary in this context. It might be better to say that such texts contained largely unscientific explanations, but as social allegories and lessons they communicated to humans experiencing life's difficulties and travails, serving more their emotional needs rather than their intellectual curiosity.

Well put, bathcat.
Bold is mine. I must agree with Cougar. Religious texts do not require rigorous logic, standard for evidence as science. Religious texts may be "used as" scientific sources, but "to use" not make them sources.

seohtu
2005-Oct-22, 12:08 AM
Okay, I stand thoroughly corrected. How could I possibly have made the rash accusation that religion at one time was used to explain (they were used as "scientific" sources in an era that predated the scientific process) what science clearly explains today? My zealot nature must be showing through; perhaps it was my utterly incomprehensible stance about religion having no place in the classroom. Admissions that much of the religious desire to remain in the forefront of human consciousness stems from a desire to maintain an unwarrented level of power over the populace were certainly out of place - again, it must be my anti-scientific thought process getting in the way. And how *could* I have thought to consider the possibility that those who accept a (ludicrous) divine presence on faith could ever be deemed worthy of intelligent, thought-provoking discussion with those of the scientific community?

I was in error, and you have my apology. I will, in the future, refrain from making such obscene allegations in this highly esteemed forum.

In fact, I think I will refrain from participating in this forum altogether. Every statement I have made has reflected the fact that religion does not belong in the scientific arena, and using quotes around the term "scientific", in most fora, would serve to acknowledge that I was using the term innappropriately, but that the association was a component of the overall point being made, a part of the context. The corrections being addressed to me do not contradict the statements I have made, but the obvious distaste for a person who dares to adhere to a faith while clearly indicating strongly mainstream views about faith's lack of merit in scientific discussion is really all I need to know.

I'll find a scientific forum to participate in. Anti-religious fora don't appeal to me. [Pretend the moderator deleted some distasteful phrase sufficient to ban me from the forum]

I'm gone.

crosscountry
2005-Oct-22, 12:13 AM
Dude,

I hope you find what you're looking for.

Van Rijn
2005-Oct-22, 12:33 AM
And that, folks, is why I so rarely debate religion these days. It doesn't take much to get angry and it is rarely useful.

Wolverine
2005-Oct-22, 07:34 AM
I guess you aren't the Powerball winner, after all. :) I don't debate theology or politics with zealots; it's a waste of breath. But I respect your beliefs (though certainly not your religion, whatever it may be), and I encourage you to look for reason and proof, in all your life's travels.
It doesn't do much good to express "respect" for someone's beliefs after you've referred to them as a zealot -- that's an unwarranted personal attack. ToSeek warned you (http://www.bautforum.com/showpost.php?p=583500&postcount=7) about exhibiting similar behavior in this post (http://www.bautforum.com/showpost.php?p=583283&postcount=6) (yes, I realize that came after what I've quoted above). In the future you need to abide by the forum rules (http://www.bautforum.com/showthread.php?p=564845#post564845) including the section on Civility & Decorum if you wish to continue posting here. In light of this and the aforementioned transgression, your account has been suspended for 24 hours.


I'll find a scientific forum to participate in. Anti-religious fora don't appeal to me. [Pretend the moderator deleted some distasteful phrase sufficient to ban me from the forum]

I'm gone.
seothu, it's understandable that you would take offense at Huevos Grandes' inappropriate comments. That being said, your post here (http://www.bautforum.com/showpost.php?p=583903&postcount=40) was rather hasty, and the sarcasm contained therein was entirely unnecessary.

This is a scientific forum, and we are not anti-religious. It's imprudent to portray an entire, diverse community as such over the statements expressed by one individual. If you re-read the commentary leading up to all this you'll notice the discussion has been quite reasonable otherwise.

In the future, should you choose to come back and participate:

15. Reporting Bad Posts

If you feel a post breaks one of these rules, please report it by clicking the 'report' button (the red triangle with the exclamation mark inside it, located at the top right hand side of every post). Do not talk about bad posts in the forum itself. All reported posts are reviewed by moderators or administrators, and are treated very seriously (so do not report frivolously). If you have concerns, please PM a moderator or administrator.

If you feel someone has violated the forum rules (http://www.bautforum.com/showthread.php?t=32864), please let us know about it. If someone posts something which angers you, take a break and return later rather than composing something inappropriate in return while you're upset. Emotive outbursts are not productive and can also lead to account suspensions.

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-22, 09:36 AM
people who claim that science is atheist are really hijacking science in the same way that ID proponents are hijacking religion.

NanC
2005-Oct-22, 08:38 PM
I dont see why religion should not be taught in schools. Dont flame me. Bear with me. If I can take a class on bowling and get credit for it a class on all religions would be cool too. Ideas like the first one could be discussed from the religions standpoint. These are after all parts of our society. Religions are a big part of society and its dumb to say well teach you about everything else but not about that. It just should be an elective and not taught by compulsion and not taught as science because they are different things.
Talking about it together with science seems like a good idea here if people can avoid getting bent over it. People who have a problem with it should avoid the conversation. Does science actually contradict the idea that the first persons post could be possible or does it just say science shouldnt discuss it because science cant prove religious issues?

crosscountry
2005-Oct-22, 09:21 PM
bowling and religion? Bowling is physical activity, hence good for you.


I see the idea for a history of religion class. But to teach doctrine in a classroom, NO. If you want that, there are about 50 churches within 2 miles of your house.



Science disproves many religious issues. that's why churches won't tolerate actual science.

Cougar
2005-Oct-22, 09:26 PM
If I can take a class on bowling and get credit for it, a class on all religions would be cool too. I got no problem there. In fact, I've taken a class in comparative religion - at the college level - and it was a good class. But in Utah, for example, the dominant Latter Day Saints religion has set up buildings right across the street from most public high school properties, and the LDS students attend their strictly LDS seminary classes before first period and get public high school credit for graduation by so attending. This is pushing the separation of church and state just a little too far, in my opinion.
Religions.... should be.... not taught as science because they are different things.If only everyone were as enlightened as you...

Welcome to the board, Nan.

NanC
2005-Oct-22, 09:28 PM
Let me add that I was talking about ALL religions being taught in this elective class, not just christianity. this would not be as indoctrination into the religion but should be as education about the various doctrines. From a historical perspective would be cool but more is what Im thinking. It just seems smart to me to teach about this major component of everyday life. even if you are atheist, you are exposed to religious effects in the news and in everyday life.

I was asking if science contradicts the possibility that the first post could be possible.

NanC
2005-Oct-22, 09:33 PM
I got no problem there. In fact, I've taken a class in comparative religion - at the college level - and it was a good class. But in Utah, for example, the dominant Latter Day Saints religion has set up buildings right across the street from most public high school properties, and the LDS students attend their strictly LDS seminary classes before first period and get public high school credit for graduation by so attending. This is pushing the separation of church and state just a little too far, in my opinion.If only everyone were as enlightened as you...

Welcome to the board, Nan.
I cant see how that could even be legal. Can students that are not part of that religion take that class and get credit for it? Would they pass the class if their final exam essay was a full denunciation of the tenets of the LDS religion, provided it showed a good understanding of the doctrinal stuff being taught? This seems like a target for lawyers.

Thank you for the welcome. It is nice to meet you all.

Huevos Grandes
2005-Oct-23, 06:54 PM
What Cougar said.

"Religion" is a commonly taught course across the United States, and even more prominent in the rest of the world. However, it is generally taught at the college level, and either as a religion- or some kind of inclusive philosophy area of concentration (major). It is not taught as a "science" at any school that I know of, at least- not a non- Bob Jones University type of institution. (This would include promoting creationism, so no harm, no foul.)

I also agree that religion should be taught, even as a mandatory course. Even if one is atheist/agnostic/anti-theist, the bearing of religion upon history and culture is tremendous, and it is important for today's young <American> students to understand how others think, particularly those outside the United States. It is completely possible to teach courses from a secular POV, and not to proselytize, or promote any agenda.

I stand by what I said: zealots are zealots, and must be checked. Particularly when they silence science by refuting any and all evidence that goes contrary to their agenda.

Bathcat
2005-Oct-23, 09:33 PM
Religion is part of our human heritage. The King James Bible is an incredible work. I understand that the Koran is similarly a literary treasure when read in the original Arabic, though apparently it loses much poetry when translated.

One would not say that Shakespeare's plays are worthless because they're scientifically inaccurate! But one would not use them as a text for teaching electromagnetic theory, either.

Religion is not science, and has no business being forced by legal fiat into science classes. It belongs in humanities-type classes!

Fram
2005-Oct-24, 09:42 AM
The Bible a literary treasure? A treasure as the source of many stories which have inspired good art and literature, yes. But there is very little good literature in the Bible as such, and many boring parts, long lists, and other things that make a reading of the Bible a task instead of a pleasure. It can well be considered a philosophical treasure though, just like many of the books of other religions.

captain swoop
2005-Oct-24, 09:50 AM
Handbag!!!

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-24, 09:59 AM
lipstick

Wolverine
2005-Oct-24, 12:08 PM
Two things:


This thread is not the WAG (http://www.bautforum.com/showthread.php?t=8541).
Let's stay on topic and within the forum guidelines. Please observe the caveats expressed by The Bad Astronomer and ToSeek.

NanC
2005-Oct-25, 12:22 AM
So does science say this original post cannot be correct?

Bathcat
2005-Oct-25, 12:26 AM
Fram: "The Bible a literary treasure?"

Sure! That's a subjective judgement, by necessity, and I apply it mostly to the King James. But it has some great imagery.

We grope for the wall like the blind, and we grope as if we had no eyes: we stumble at noon day as in the night; we are in desolate places as dead men. We roar all like bears, and mourn sore like doves: we look for judgment, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far off from us. Isaiah 59:10,11

Ouch, what a cry of despair.

Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice? She standeth in the top of high places, by the way in the places of the paths. She crieth at the gates, at the entry of the city, at the coming in at the doors. Unto you, O men, I call; and my voice is to the sons of man. Proverbs 8:1-4

Doesn't the bit from Proverbs 8 speak to what this here very bulletin board addresses: understanding of the universe and mankind's place in it?

To my feeble mind it seems that verse speaks, metaphorically, about why we nutty humans pursue topics like cosmology and try to understand the stars: we just naturally feel that wisdom, knowledge, and understanding are beautiful.

'Course, all literature is in the mind of the beholder. You won't find the same things I do, and that's cool. But I certainly hold that the King James Bible is indeed a great literary work even if it was written by a derned committee! :)

Van Rijn
2005-Oct-25, 12:32 AM
So does science say this original post cannot be correct?

Most of the OP was about Biblical interpretation. Science has nothing to say about that. Were there specific technical/scientific points you were asking about?

NanC
2005-Oct-25, 12:58 AM
Most of the OP was about Biblical interpretation. Science has nothing to say about that. Were there specific technical/scientific points you were asking about?
No I was curious over all. I saw posts about it not being a scientific post and was not sure. I like that this post can be talked about here and most of it seems pretty nice. I like the first three chapters of Jeremiah if you want to see beautifully spoken love and very much hurt together. It makes me cry to read it.

I know poetry is good when it makes an emotional response in the reader so I think the Bible can be read as fine literature also. This is even in translations other than KJV but I know that can make an angry topic also.

Sticks
2005-Oct-25, 04:56 AM
The OP is contradicted by the Bible (Exodus 20:11) (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Exodus%2020:11&version=31)

crosscountry
2005-Oct-25, 04:57 AM
what is "the OP"

Peter B
2005-Oct-25, 05:03 AM
OP = Original Post

crosscountry
2005-Oct-25, 03:39 PM
makes sense

aurora
2005-Oct-28, 05:51 PM
New article out today on this topic:

Is the US Becoming Hostile to Science? (http://www.cnn.com/2005/TECH/science/10/28/science.debate.reut/index.html)


It does seem to me that there is a large segment of the US population that is pining away for the 17th century, and they are in a position of power.

Unfortunately, training people to ignore facts is just putting the US into the position of having to import more scientists, or outsource science overseas when there aren't enough viable science candidates to fill the positions. And the US will be less able to compete because fewer new discoveries in genetics, health, medicine, biology, geology, space, will be made in the US.

Some might say that too much is being made of this, but clearly the creationists intend to use ID as a way to introduce their creed to students and try to convince them that it is science.

Monique
2005-Oct-28, 06:42 PM
I do not understand hostility. Science tell what is true. I (each person) decide why, decide path for life, for spirit.

Edit to add:


Brown University biologist Kenneth Miller believes the rhetoric of the anti-evolution movement has had the effect of driving a wedge between a large proportion of the population who follow fundamentalist Christianity and science.

"It is alienating young people from science. It basically tells them that the scientific community is not to be trusted and you would have to abandon your principles of faith to become a scientist, which is not at all true," he said.

Is very unfortunate. I am mathematician, I am Buddhist also.

Cougar
2005-Oct-28, 06:48 PM
I do not understand hostility. Science tell what is true. I (each person) decide why, decide path for life, for spirit.I think Paul Kurtz said it well....
"...the desire to seek a kind of accommodation by mutual tolerance is understandable, even commendable. Nonetheless speaking as a secularist and skeptic, I believe this should not preclude others within the community from questioning the claims of Biblical, Koranic, or other absolute faiths, particularly since massive efforts are constantly undertaken by missionaries to recruit members to the fold... This posture is especially questionable given the constant effort by militant religionists to apply their doctrines in the political process, thus seeking to impose their views on others."

Huevos Grandes
2005-Oct-28, 07:01 PM
Some might say that too much is being made of this, but clearly the creationists intend to use ID as a way to introduce their creed to students and try to convince them that it is science.

I would have to agree with the issue being blown up in the media spotlight. The vast majority of Americans with deeply-held spiritual beliefs don't eschew all of the technological advances due to the advancement of science: medicine, communication, transportation, political discourse, etc. It's only a teeny, tiny segment of the population that feels threatened and/or sees now as the ideal setting for undoing some of the education that the common man has been able to make himself more independent with in the last couple hundred years. The "facts" they put forth are anything but, and go contrary to all established logic and scientific method, yet still they are masqueraded as the "science" of creationism.


I do not understand hostility. Science tell what is true. I (each person) decide why, decide path for life, for spirit.

Science liberates, and generally is a non-ideological tool for aiding discovery. Spirituality is a personal choice, yet many of these doctrines have forced proselytizing hard-wired. I don't know why everyone acts surprised or feigns outrage; men have only been bashing each others' heads in over worshipping the wrong god(s) since the beginning of recorded time...

Monique
2005-Oct-28, 08:08 PM
I do not understand hostility. Science tell what is true. I (each person) decide why, decide path for life, for spirit.

I think Paul Kurtz said it well....


"...the desire to seek a kind of accommodation by mutual tolerance is understandable, even commendable. Nonetheless speaking as a secularist and skeptic, I believe this should not preclude others within the community from questioning the claims of Biblical, Koranic, or other absolute faiths, particularly since massive efforts are constantly undertaken by missionaries to recruit members to the fold... This posture is especially questionable given the constant effort by militant religionists to apply their doctrines in the political process, thus seeking to impose their views on others."


Sad, but I must agree. I have my beliefs, is not right others force beliefs for all.

Swift
2005-Oct-28, 08:11 PM
<snip>
The vast majority of Americans with deeply-held spiritual beliefs don't eschew all of the technological advances due to the advancement of science: medicine, communication, transportation, political discourse, etc. It's only a teeny, tiny segment of the population that feels threatened and/or sees now as the ideal setting for undoing some of the education that the common man has been able to make himself more independent with in the last couple hundred years.
I agree that the majority of Americans with deeply-held spiritual beliefs like and use the technology that science has given us. There are two problems. First, if you don't teach SCIENCE in schools (and not pseudo-science masquerading as science) then you won't have the people who are able to continue to develop these technologies. Second, if the average person does not have a basic understanding of science, then science to them becomes some sort of magical black art that only the wizards of science use. This creates a schism that I believe is fundamentally bad for a democratic society.

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-28, 08:55 PM
Perhaps an exchange program could be worked out. If creationists don't like the industrial world there are many in Africa who would. Both sides can get what they want; the creationists can go back to the living in mud huts and as many Africans can move into the creationist's American homes. Maybe this would also be reparation for the way Africans were treated by American slave traders a few hundred years ago. Seems fair.

Monique
2005-Oct-28, 09:13 PM
Perhaps an exchange program could be worked out. If creationists don't like the industrial world there are many in Africa who would. Both sides can get what they want; the creationists can go back to the living in mud huts and as many Africans can move into the creationist's American homes. Maybe this would also be reparation for the way Africans were treated by American slave traders a few hundred years ago. Seems fair.
All people free to follow beliefs. Not free to force others follow same spiritual path.

Construction of evolutionary theory in science. Construction if ID theory not science. Must not force ID to science. Everyone free to believe, teach children beliefs. Belief not science.

Bathcat
2005-Oct-28, 10:18 PM
Monique: "All people free to follow beliefs. Not free to force others follow same spiritual path."

Aieeee.

Yes, your statement is beautifully correct.

However, there is a difficulty and I fear, despairingly, that it is insurmountable.

Many religious creeds teach that they are in possession of the Sole Perfect And Universal Truth.

Therefore: to force others to acknowledge that their spiritual path is the One True Path can only be a blessing to those who are so ignorant and benighted as to follow error.

::cries::

::goes to refrigerator for another beer::

I cannot see how this dilemma can be resolved.

----

We all long for understanding, for wisdom. Wisdom cries to us; she stands at our gates and calls and her voice is to all mankind.

----

There are two truths: the objective, the scientific, the consensual: those things we can test and for which we agree that our tests give the same results. And there are subjective, "spiritual" truths: those which come from within, which tell us "this is good and beautiful, and this is wrong and evil and ugly."

I don't know if there is any absolute truth which enfolds both realms.

Do you know?

Monique
2005-Oct-28, 10:58 PM
There are two truths: the objective, the scientific, the consensual: those things we can test and for which we agree that our tests give the same results. And there are subjective, "spiritual" truths: those which come from within, which tell us "this is good and beautiful, and this is wrong and evil and ugly."

I don't know if there is any absolute truth which enfolds both realms.

Do you know?
Ahhh metaphysics on science forum :)

I do not seek "absolute truth". Science give me physical answers. How computer work, how moon stay in sky, how sun shine. Spiritual path give me choice. Choose meditate in moonlite, choose to post in foolish science forum (is joke ;) ), choose to lay on beach under sun.

I believe science tool, make poor philosophy for life choices. Choose for scientist, skeptic, not same choose science for philosophy for life.

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-29, 08:33 AM
I think that science can provide many answers for spiritual needs where as taking the bible literally just creates heat not light.

TheThorn
2005-Oct-29, 07:53 PM
That would be a false dichotomy, Frog. I believe Monique is encouraging a middle road - use science for understanding the physical universe we live in, and at the same time recognize that there are a lot of spiritual, moral, ethical, esthetic questions that science really can't help us with.

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-29, 08:11 PM
yea, well people get run over if they walk down the middle of that road.
If creationists refuses to accept where the human race came from then that is the context in which they will addess spiritual,moral and ethical questions.

Faultline
2005-Oct-29, 10:22 PM
Religion is great. It gives people hope and lets them practice having faith which is an important life skill. It encourages us to make good choices that benefit society and to not be selfish(establishes a moral conscious).

However, religion has its bad side when it is misused in ways I don't belive that God intended. It hurts society when relgious leaders encourage intolerance and when they tell us to ignore basic scientific evidence when it contradicts what the Bible says.

[my best Forrest Gump impression]
And that's all I have to say about that.
[/my best Forrest Gump impression]

diskmaster
2005-Oct-30, 04:27 AM
The fact is there are two ideas: everything came from nothing or a God created everything. None of us was there; the rest is open to discussion, debate, or what ever you want to call it. Everone should act like adults and stop the name calling. Doug

TheBlackCat
2005-Oct-30, 05:58 AM
That does not make both positions equally valid, diskmaster. One side is based on mathematics, logic, and mountains of evidence. The other is based on faith alone, and goes completely against everything we know about the universe. I would not call that a "open to debate", the issue is pretty one-sided.

I know I used this quote a earlier today, but it is a good quote so I will use it again:


...when two opposite points of view are expressed with equal intensity, the truth does not necessarily lie exactly halfway between them. It is possible for one side to be simply wrong.

crosscountry
2005-Oct-30, 06:09 AM
The fact is there are two ideas: everything came from nothing or a God created everything. None of us was there; the rest is open to discussion, debate, or what ever you want to call it. Everone should act like adults and stop the name calling. Doug


Does that mean God came from nothing?

Sticks
2005-Oct-30, 06:57 AM
That does not make both positions equally valid, diskmaster. One side is based on mathematics, logic, and mountains of evidence. The other is based on faith alone, and goes completely against everything we know about the universe.

I can not speak for other faiths but James 2:24 (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=James%202:24;&version=49;) mentions the term "faith alone" where it was being condemned

During the start of the early church Acts 17:11 (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts%2017:11;&version=49;) commends a group of people who did not just take the apostle Paul at his word and checked what he said up.

Faith is meant to be based on some evidence and according to Romans 1:20 (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans%201:20;&version=49;) the world / universe itself was to be proof of God's existance. This lead to the idea that God created two books, the book of the Bible and the Book of Nature, and it was the early Christian fathers who felt it was their religious duty to study both, which was the origin of scientific enquiry in the west.

Others have sought empirical evidence (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proof_of_God#Empirical_arguments)for God, hardly just an "intellectual ascent" to an idea, like "there must be life out there"

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-30, 08:42 AM
All I was saying was that if you give creationists an inch then they might take a mile not that the truth lay either in religion solely or science solely.
ID is a cancer that should be cut out from the body of society; you can't compromise with cancer.

Faultline
2005-Oct-30, 02:13 PM
I'll agree. Give creationists an inch and they'll run a mile with it.

Give a scientist an inch and she'll analyze it and might tell you something about it you didn't know before.

Maksutov
2005-Oct-30, 02:44 PM
I can not speak for other faiths but James 2:24 (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=James%202:24;&version=49;) mentions the term "faith alone" where it was being condemned

During the start of the early church Acts 17:11 (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts%2017:11;&version=49;) commends a group of people who did not just take the apostle Paul at his word and checked what he said up.In any book with a multitude of words, pages, and translations, there will always be a passage that can be used to justify what the apologist wishes to justify.

Of course the fact that the cited passage is contradicted by another passage elsewhere in the tome is conveniently overlooked.


Faith is meant to be based on some evidence and according to Romans 1:20 (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans%201:20;&version=49;) the world / universe itself was to be proof of God's existance...Really? See the above comment, plus as viewed by what's commonly defined as "faith" (and its boon companion "belief") the term "some evidence" would approach zero very closely.

Careful. You're getting uncomfortably close to a scientific analysis of FSMism.


This lead to the idea that God created two books, the book of the Bible and the Book of Nature, and it was the early Christian fathers who felt it was their religious duty to study both, which was the origin of scientific enquiry in the west.Evidence please.

jkmccrann
2005-Oct-30, 03:03 PM
Does that mean God came from nothing?

NO, God was created by God of course. He's all powerful remember!

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-30, 03:19 PM
God of the hebrews was not created, he always was.
The area of a circle always was pi*r^2 too.

crosscountry
2005-Oct-30, 03:27 PM
God of the hebrews was not created, he always was.
The area of a circle always was pi*r^2 too.

which geometry are you using? Einstein showed your statement to be true only in the absence of all gravity


(i.e. never gonna happen) but it's a good approximation on small scales

crosscountry
2005-Oct-30, 03:29 PM
NO, God was created by God of course. He's all powerful remember!


we [God and I] were never introduced. Sounds like a guy you want on your side (http://bobdylan.com/songs/withgod.html) during a fight.

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-30, 03:36 PM
he is a guy you would want on your side.

I don't think that God would be too impressed with the ID proponents so I would have thought that God would be on Darwin' side where the Kansas case is concerned, afterall he saw it all happen right from the first one celled creature,to the landing on the moon.

Sticks
2005-Oct-30, 05:53 PM
In any book with a multitude of words, pages, and translations, there will always be a passage that can be used to justify what the apologist wishes to justify.

Of course the fact that the cited passage is contradicted by another passage elsewhere in the tome is conveniently overlooked.

So which passages contradict the ones I cited, James 2:24, Acts 11:17 Romans 1:20 :confused:



Really? See the above comment, plus as viewed by what's commonly defined as "faith" (and its boon companion "belief") the term "some evidence" would approach zero very closely.


I tend to use words in their original meaning, rather than today's meaning. (I once did a series of lessons at church based on this premise, but was asked to stop as an Etymological study was considered too heavy) Faith is more active than giving intelectual credence to something, it involved putting total trust in something, like when someone puts faith in a parachute.

Regarding evidence, I did put a link to a wikkipedia article about empiracal evidence offered. The problem with any evidence is that sometimes it can be interpreted more than one way, according to what has been decided apriori.



Careful. You're getting uncomfortably close to a scientific analysis of FSMism.

What is FSMism? :confused:





This lead to the idea that God created two books, the book of the Bible and the Book of Nature, and it was the early Christian fathers who felt it was their religious duty to study both, which was the origin of scientific enquiry in the west.

Evidence please.

I first heard this at a lecture in Scotland in the 1980's, however this is touched upon in the book Gods in the Sky (http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/0752261649/) by Dr Allan Chapman (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allan_Chapman)

One example I recall is that Copernicus was actually a member of the Roman Catholic priesthood.

Cougar
2005-Oct-30, 07:54 PM
This lead to the idea that .... it was the early Christian fathers who felt it was their religious duty to study both, which was the origin of scientific enquiry in the west.
And what do you call the Greeks' (http://www.popularscience.co.uk/reviews/rev85.htm) contribution? Wasn't it the Greeks who first made the leap to move from the assumption that the cause of natural events and objects was mythological, ascribed to the intervention of gods, to a rule-based cosmos where it was possible to deduce a logical explanation for events?

Sticks
2005-Oct-30, 08:12 PM
The Greeks certainly contributed and Allan Chapman covers them in his book

Wolverine
2005-Oct-31, 03:39 PM
Apparently this (http://www.bautforum.com/showthread.php?p=564845#post564845) needs to be reiterated:

12. Politics & Religion

Due to the contentious nature of these subjects, forum participants are strongly advised to avoid discussing religious and political issues. Please don't begin or contribute to a topic that's merely going to incite or fuel a flame war.

However, the following exceptions apply:

A) Political impact upon space programs, exploration, and science.

B) Focused, polite discussion of concepts such as creationism and "intelligent design" which bear direct relevance to astronomy and science, for the purposes of conversing about and addressing misconceptions.

C) Focused, polite discussion of the difference between astronomy (including cosmology) and religion

Partisan political debate is unwelcome and should be undertaken elsewhere. The same applies to debates purely religious in nature. Likewise, proselytizing will not be allowed. In short, you are allowed to discuss politics and religion within a very limited scope where they affect space and space exploration, astronomy, and science. Nothing more. If you really really need to talk about these topics with someone, take it to email or to another bulletin board.

This topic addresses evolution and creationism -- please do not embark on scriptural analyses or other tangents straying from the intended focus.

Wolverine
2005-Oct-31, 03:40 PM
What is FSMism? :confused:

See here (http://www.venganza.org/).

Faultline
2005-Oct-31, 05:13 PM
FSM... Stinking hilarious!

Thanks for bringing out what I had mentioned earler. This needs to be about creationism and evolution, as the title says. Instead, it quickly shunted off in the direction of how creationists got their argument wrong from the Bible and it hasn't budged much from that track.

Edited to put the capital "B" in "Bible." I am respectful.

Sticks
2005-Oct-31, 05:21 PM
I seemed to have got side tracked on to showing that we need not have such a dicotomy between the two camps and that those in one camp were capable of critical thinking.

Sorry about that

crosscountry
2005-Nov-01, 01:00 AM
See here (http://www.venganza.org/).

I've got to get one of those t-shirts

John_Charles_Webb
2005-Nov-01, 07:22 PM
It is my belief that a clear, non conflicting (fat chance!), dichotomy can exist between Evolution and Creationism.

I do not believe that biblical accounts of creation are literal, however, I do believe that a distinction can be made between "contents" (consciousness) and "container" (physical body).

Evolution is proveable science and physics regarding physical evolution. Creationism is "meta-physics" which is a system of cause and effects that operates outside of the laws of everyday physics and is best focused upon consciousness (awareness) rather than the evolution of the physical. Although there is some overlap between the two streams of thought.

To the meta-physician, consciousness is "un-created" and exists beyond the veil of time and space. It occupies "matter" and can effect matter or, ultimately, abandon matter and exist as pure spirit (consciousness).

There are, what appears to be psuedo-scientific methods, of gradually distilling the consciousness from its container. The New Testament is a type of deeply encoded metaphysical handbook that reveals the method(s) of dividing the body (splitting the "ADAM") into consciousness and form (initially an inner condition) and then to have the consciousness (spirit) gradually consume (the "Last Supper" is a metaphor) or eliminate the pull of biology to gradually attain a spiritually "enlightened" state of consciousness (the transcendence of self). The finished product of successfully completing this process is a spiritual (non physical) condition that transcends space/time and is only remotely (secondarily) associated with physical evolution and physical anthropology.

Eventually the fossil record will be complete, however, it will not (IMO) reveal the root of consciousness because (metaphysically speaking) the physical form is only a vehicle of expression for the spirit or consciousness which includes a creative component other than reproductive.

Creationism, at is heart, deals with non-material issues. "Non-material" means NO-thing or nothing (spirit). The mind can only "grock" things and their attributes which is the root of all of the physical sciences.

Creationism does not by necessity have to include religion, but presently, creationism is powered by religious zeal and is not science rather than a reaction to it. If there is a scientific component to creationism it has yet to be formulated.

It is my opinion that the lack of Intelligent Design is chaos. The beauty of any philosophy of Intelligent Design is that it includes (suggests) a sorely lacking awe and admiration of nature. Perhaps similar to that awe and admiration personally discovered by Einstein who believed in a creator and than went about to discover the creator's methods.

Is creationism science? No, not yet. But perhaps our "evolution" has come to a point that allows for investigation and discussion in these areas.

Faultline
2005-Nov-01, 07:42 PM
I don't get it. Are you saying that evolution and creationism describe the same process through different means?

(I can't believe I just asked that question!)

Gillianren
2005-Nov-01, 08:34 PM
Eventually the fossil record will be complete . . . .

How? Given the unlikelihood of fossil preservation, that it is as complete as it is can be seen as, well, a miracle. Not every species will have had a sample preserved, and not every sample fossilized will a) be found and b)still be available to be found! There are fossils in them thar subduction zones, and they will go into the mantle and be destroyed. They will be shattered in earthquakes, or out of human reach entirely for one reason or another. I have studied geology and paleontology (albeit not to a professional level), and I see no reason to ever anticipate a complete fossil record.

Monique
2005-Nov-01, 09:00 PM
Eventually the fossil record will be complete, however, it will not (IMO) reveal the root of consciousness because (metaphysically speaking) the physical form is only a vehicle of expression for the spirit or consciousness which includes a creative component other than reproductive.

Show evidence for point I put bold.



Creationism, at is heart, deals with non-material issues. "Non-material" means NO-thing or nothing (spirit). The mind can only "grock" things and their attributes which is the root of all of the physical sciences.

Please to provide specific definition for word I put bold.



It is my opinion that the lack of Intelligent Design is chaos. The beauty of any philosophy of Intelligent Design is that it includes (suggests) a sorely lacking awe and admiration of nature. Perhaps similar to that awe and admiration personally discovered by Einstein who believed in a creator and than went about to discover the creator's methods.

I disagree. I define as increase in entropy. "Beauty and awe and admiration of nature" result from knowledge that increase in entropy produce great beauty.

Quartermain
2005-Nov-01, 10:22 PM
It is my opinion that the lack of Intelligent Design is chaos. The beauty of any philosophy of Intelligent Design is that it includes (suggests) a sorely lacking awe and admiration of nature. Perhaps similar to that awe and admiration personally discovered by Einstein who believed in a creator and than went about to discover the creator's methods.


Two particles bump and adhear together by static forces. A smaller particle of matter falls toward the larger particle under the force of gravity and are impeeded by the force of electromagnetism. More particles fall toward the system expanding the reach of the gravity well pulling in more and more matter. Pressure inside the body builds exciting the atoms near the core. They transform into liquid and metalic forms. As the material heats and cools convections stir inside producing an electromagnetic field heating and igniting gas. Interior pressures build until inevitably fussion errupts in a chain reaction. Balanced by the gravity of the massive body a perpetual explosion of energy insues producing what we know today to be our sun.

This is emergence and I don't see it as very intelligent at all. Merely the result of a particle system that worked becuase it had to.



Is creationism science? No, not yet. But perhaps our "evolution" has come to a point that allows for investigation and discussion in these areas.

Man has examined creationism since the dawn of time and it has never made much sense. Man has examined biological evolution for 200 years and finally our existance seems to make some sense. We're certainly not going to back to creationism now.

TheBlackCat
2005-Nov-02, 12:43 AM
Evolution is proveable science and physics regarding physical evolution.
"Proveable science" is an oxymoron. There is no such thing as "proof" in science. Evolution has absolutely nothing to do with physics whatsoever, I have no idea why you would even mention physics. This statements demonstrates a significant lack of understanding of both science and evolution


To the meta-physician, consciousness is "un-created" and exists beyond the veil of time and space. It occupies "matter" and can effect matter or, ultimately, abandon matter and exist as pure spirit (consciousness).
Consciousness is nothing more than the activity of the human brain. This has been shown time and time again. Whether it exists after death is another matter entirely, but while the person is alive conciousness is the brain (or at least parts of it), it is not simply stored there.


There are, what appears to be psuedo-scientific methods, of gradually distilling the consciousness from its container. The New Testament is a type of deeply encoded metaphysical handbook that reveals the method(s) of dividing the body (splitting the "ADAM") into consciousness and form (initially an inner condition) and then to have the consciousness (spirit) gradually consume (the "Last Supper" is a metaphor) or eliminate the pull of biology to gradually attain a spiritually "enlightened" state of consciousness (the transcendence of self). The finished product of successfully completing this process is a spiritual (non physical) condition that transcends space/time and is only remotely (secondarily) associated with physical evolution and physical anthropology.
You seem to be mixing eastern and western religious principles in a way that would probably offend both groups.


Eventually the fossil record will be complete, however, it will not (IMO) reveal the root of consciousness because (metaphysically speaking) the physical form is only a vehicle of expression for the spirit or consciousness which includes a creative component other than reproductive.
The root of consciousness is well known. There is a very simple test of this hypothesis. If the conciousness is not actually coming from the brain, but only is located there, then things that affect the brain should not alter the conciousness. This is not the case, things that affect the brain have massive impacts on conciousness, including ability to percieve things, ability to communicate, even people's personalities can undergo massive changes if there is damage to the brain.


It is my opinion that the lack of Intelligent Design is chaos.
Obviously, and chaos is exactly what we see in nature. So that is evidence against intelligent design. I think it was said best by Joseph Ford:


Evolution is chaos with feedback.

As well as Henry Brooks Adams:

In plain words, Chaos was the law of nature; Order was the dream of man.


The beauty of any philosophy of Intelligent Design is that it includes (suggests) a sorely lacking awe and admiration of nature.
Many scientists do what they do specifically because of awe and admiration of nature. That is what drives them. So saying it is sorely lacking is silly.


Perhaps similar to that awe and admiration personally discovered by Einstein who believed in a creator and than went about to discover the creator's methods.
I think Einstein himself is the best person to refute this claim:


It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it.


Is creationism science? No, not yet. But perhaps our "evolution" has come to a point that allows for investigation and discussion in these areas.
There was no need, creationism was already know to be in big trouble before modern evolution was ever discovered. Evolution was simply the final nail in the coffin.

Jim
2005-Nov-02, 06:12 PM
[QUOTE=Monique]Please to provide specific definition for word I put bold./QUOTE]

It's from Robert Heinlein's writings. "To grok (pronounced GRAHK) something is to understand something so well that it is fully absorbed into oneself."

More at http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/0,,sid9_gci212216,00.html

Sticks
2005-Nov-02, 10:51 PM
I came across this MP3 broadcast (http://www.icr.org/radio/mp3/sss-1018.mp3) from ICR which shows that some in the Creationist movement have issues with Intelligent Design

FWIW

Wolverine
2005-Nov-02, 11:15 PM
I came across this MP3 broadcast (http://www.icr.org/radio/mp3/sss-1018.mp3) from ICR which shows that some in the Creationist movement have issues with Intelligent Design

FWIW
:naughty: Not so fast.

The issues the ICR and other staunch creationist groups have with ID are due to its omission of God, scripture, and traditional Biblical creationism. They're upset (http://www.icr.org/index.php?module=articles&action=view&ID=425) that the "designer" isn't specifically identified as the God of the Bible -- not because ID constitutes nothing more than an unscientific argument from incredulity (http://www.americanscientist.org/template/AssetDetail/assetid/47366?&print=yes). The difference must be duly noted.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-02, 11:23 PM
Duly noted, then. That's a good point, though. It would be worse to teach God, scripture, and traditional Biblical creationism in a science class.

Sticks
2005-Nov-03, 04:24 PM
Duly noted, then. That's a good point, though. It would be worse to teach God, scripture, and traditional Biblical creationism in a science class.

The solution would be to have it taught in a humanities class

The interesting thing I found from the ICR programme was that I am not alone in the "Creationist" zone, albeit on the fringes of, that has some disquiet about ID, albeit for different reason that ICR gives.

If the imposition of ID is causing stress to science teachers because it currently goes against their consciences, then I suspect the ID proponents have seriously lost the plot here. One can theoretically be "right", for arguments sake, but go about things all wrong.

I guess the more hard liners may think me more of a liberal :sad: and I seem to find myself yet again in a no-man's land, as I also have issues with aspects of evolutionary theory.

Wolverine
2005-Nov-03, 04:26 PM
...I also have issues with aspects of evolutionary theory.

Such as?

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-03, 04:39 PM
The solution would be to have it taught in a humanities class

Only if you're talking about all religions. When you only teach one religion, you admit biase and ignore the teachings of others.

One reason why I don't like the Bible being used as a reference for law, school, or general decisions in politics. I don't want any single reference based on a single belief being enforced upon me, my family, or my friends.

Faultline
2005-Nov-03, 04:49 PM
The solution would be to have it taught in a humanities class



Except for the little thing about church and state...

Let private schools teach what they want. Public education is paid for by tax money and tax money shouldn't go to teaching religion.

Off-topic, I know!

Sticks
2005-Nov-03, 05:00 PM
Only if you're talking about all religions.


Yes that is what I advocate, when I was at one school we looked at other religions and we even went on a field trip to a Hindu temple in Leicester.

When the family moved to another part of the country in a Religious Education class we also did about Hinduism, and for a homework we were told to write about an imaginary trip to a Hindu Temple :rolleyes: . I just wrote about the field trip we had in the other school, which was real. I do not know what the grade I got was.




Such as?


Abiogenisis
Genetic mutation as a mechanism for evolution
Integrity of radiometric rock dating techniques
Absence of Transitional forms in the fossil record
The insistance of Uniformism to explain geological features as opposed to catastrophism (sudden floods, spring run offs etc)

are what come to mind at the moment

Also from the non scientific realm, Evolutionary theory was used to justify communism and the Nazi Final solution

Maksutov
2005-Nov-03, 05:01 PM
I came across this MP3 broadcast (http://www.icr.org/radio/mp3/sss-1018.mp3) from ICR which shows that some in the Creationist movement have issues with Intelligent Design

FWIWIf you're listening to ICR broadcasts and considering them as significant, then it's high time to enroll in a class on basic critical thinking.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-03, 05:04 PM
Also from the non scientific realm, Evolutionary theory was used to justify communism and the Nazi Final solution

As an argument, this is thin ice. Evolution itself is *NOT* responsible for this. It was the decisions by those in charge to justify their actions. Without Evolution, they probably would have found another way to justify it. For instance: The Nazis might easily have justified the Final Solution using divine means, or God, as easily as they might have used Evolution.

This is an argument based on emotion, no more. It has no place in a serious discussion on the issue of whether or not Evolution has evidence to support it or not.

(Since I'm an ignoramus on the inner workings of Evolution, this is where I'll stop)

Also:


Let private schools teach what they want. Public education is paid for by tax money and tax money shouldn't go to teaching religion.

I'll be honest with you. I, personally, am an agnostic that believes in no religion, and does NOT want religion thrust upon me. However, why is it so wrong to have a Religion class, that teaches religion and how it's affected society throughout history? This is both a Sociological AND a History outlook - both very important, IMO. It doesn't preach the religion, nor say if it's "right" or "wrong" (and I abhor the instructor that turns it into that), but rather explains religion in an unbiased, objective way as a major force throughout history.

Heck, I was IGNORANT of religion for a lot of my life! I just recently (at the age of 20), found out that my ancestors, the Polish, were Christians. Then I found out through research (at the age of 20), that their major enemy was the Catholic "Teutonic Order" (I probably spelled the former word wrong). This actually changed my outlook quite a bit... though it's difficult to explain why, and I probably shouldn't

I'd rather religion be taught in schools, than ignorance in a major factor be preached. A lot of religious people also use false history in their arguments - because they were never taught better.

(Yes, probably off topic, and I really didn't mean to ramble this long. Sorries).

Sticks
2005-Nov-03, 05:15 PM
If you're listening to ICR broadcasts and considering them as significant, then it's high time to enroll in a class on basic critical thinking.

The link was in among 4 an e-mail that was sent to me. I subscribed to the ICR newsletter a long time ago, and never got around to unsubscribing. I have not yet listened to the others. The one I listened to was about Intelligent design, and I was trying to find out more about what is happening across the pond for when it hits our shores.



This is an argument based on emotion, no more. It has no place in a serious discussion on the issue of whether or not Evolution has evidence to support it or not.

That was why I split it off from the other issues, it was something I once heard, I can not remember from where. I suspect Darwin would have been appauled at what his theory was used to justify. I did not mean to cause offence by mentioning it:(

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-03, 05:22 PM
The one instance I've ever heard of Evolution being used in sociological contexts has to do with Social Darwinism. By the way: "Survival of the Fittest" was coined by Herbert Spencer, the sociologist that came up with the idea of Social Darwinism, NOT Darwin! The idea of Social Darwinism was to not try to fix society through Sociology, but instead to let things take their course. The main justification was that all the "bad" in society would die off on its own, and the good would rise up. Thus, any "Civil Rights movements" would have been looked down upon if they were started by sociologists.

I haven't heard of evolution being used to justify communism, and I don't know how one would go about that anyways.

As for the Nazis using it as a justification, I'd buy that. There was a huge consensus that Jews did not contribute at all to society, and were like a leech upon it. They blamed all their troubles on the Jews, so comparing getting rid of them to Evolution seems rather logical, if you consider their mode of logic. Not that I agree with it, of course.

Wolverine
2005-Nov-03, 05:25 PM
Abiogenisis
Evolution does not presume to explain abiogenesis. That's a common misonception.


Genetic mutation as a mechanism for evolution
The following may be of assistance:

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/mutations.html
http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB100.html
http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB101.html
http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB101_1.html
http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB101_2.html
http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB102.html


Integrity of radiometric rock dating techniques
See here (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/dating.html), here (http://talkorigins.org/faqs/isochron-dating.html), and here (http://talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-age-of-earth.html).


Absence of Transitional forms in the fossil record
This is a fundamental misconception -- numerous transitional fossils exist. I'd suggest starting here (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-transitional.html), prior to reviewing the refutations of creationist claims (http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/list.html) concerning transitional forms (CC200 onward).


The insistance of Uniformism to explain geological features as opposed to catastrophism (sudden floods, spring run offs etc)
Could you please be more specific?

JohnW
2005-Nov-03, 05:56 PM
Abiogenisis
Abiogenesis and evolution are different issues. It's true that we don't know the details of how life began, but that is irrelevant to evolution, which concerns changes in populations of lifeforms over time.

If we had evidence that abiogenesis was impossible (or very close to impossible) in principle, that would suggest divine intervention at that point, but evolution could operate from then on without a supernatural hand at the wheel.

Genetic mutation as a mechanism for evolution
I'm not sure what your objection is. Existence of mutations? Demonstrated many times. Existence of beneficial mutations? Ditto. Change in prevalence of mutations over time in a population? Ditto. Differential survival rates? Ditto again.

Integrity of radiometric rock dating techniques
Again, what is your specific objection? The various measures are generally well-calibrated with each other and with non-radiometric techniques. Take a look at this (http://www.asa3.org/ASA/resources/Wiens.html), for example.

Absence of Transitional forms in the fossil record
How many more transitional forms would you like? There are hundreds. Just as an example, try googling "Ambulocetus".

The insistance of Uniformism to explain geological features as opposed to catastrophism (sudden floods, spring run offs etc)
Like these (http://vulcan.wr.usgs.gov/Glossary/Glaciers/IceSheets/description_lake_missoula.html) geological features, as described by those famous creationists, the US Geological Survey?

Also from the non scientific realm, Evolutionary theory was used to justify communism and the Nazi Final solution
And Jesus was used to justify imperialism, slavery and the Spanish Inquisition. I don't hold them against him.

aurora
2005-Nov-03, 10:32 PM
Like these (http://vulcan.wr.usgs.gov/Glossary/Glaciers/IceSheets/description_lake_missoula.html) geological features, as described by those famous creationists, the US Geological Survey?


Yes, the Earth is to a large extent covered with things that formed very slowly (like the Madison limestone in the western US, hundreds of feet of fine grained limestone and dolomite covering several large states, with a few items that happened quickly, like a Lake Missoula flood, or an eruption like Santorini.

Creationists like the fast items, because they think somehow that can be used to explain a global flood in recent times. Of course, a global flood a few thousand years ago is just woo woo talk.

JohnW
2005-Nov-03, 10:44 PM
Yes, the Earth is to a large extent covered with things that formed very slowly (like the Madison limestone in the western US, hundreds of feet of fine grained limestone and dolomite covering several large states, with a few items that happened quickly, like a Lake Missoula flood, or an eruption like Santorini.

Creationists like the fast items, because they think somehow that can be used to explain a global flood in recent times. Of course, a global flood a few thousand years ago is just woo woo talk.
Aurora, I think the point Sticks was making was that geologists stubbornly insist on uniform, gradualist explanations for all observed phenomena. (Sticks, I apologise if I've misinterpreted your statement). I cited the Bretz Floods to show that this is not true.

TheBlackCat
2005-Nov-04, 12:42 AM
No modern geologist truly follows the "uniformist" view anymore. They realize that slow and rapid processes both have an impact on geology. What they reject is that everything we see is the result of catastrophes (or in the case of YECs, one catastrophe). However, creationists seem to try to make it seem like modern geologists reject any rapid change, which is decades out of date (like many things the creationists claim scientists think).

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-04, 12:58 AM
That was why I split it off from the other issues, it was something I once heard, I can not remember from where. I suspect Darwin would have been appauled at what his theory was used to justify. I did not mean to cause offence by mentioning it:(

Please don't take this as a personal attack, but I’ve seen this as fairly common place among your posts in the bulletin board and in talk back on the BA Blog. Many if not all of the gaps/issues you cite with evolution, and a lot of the statements you've made and later retracted as just something you read or heard somewhere, are really not much more than propagandist talking points of these biblical literalists. All of the "scientific" work and papers on ICR are done solely to try and prove biblical literalism. And have an order of magnitude more flaws than the true science they are trying to refute. Radio-metric dating is a prime example, it's hard for most people to understand in any way, so when someone comes along and very passionately points out false falsisms, or points to one case that doesn't "fit" the established model the whole thing is claimed to be bunk.

I ran into ICR years ago doing some background for a field area for some geology work. The field area I was working in was being used as direct evidence for "The Flood". At the time I found it very funny. Since then, and with the IDers gaining ground ICR is now SCARY to me. You mentioned in a post I read recently on the BA Blog something along the lines of ID seems to be creationism through the back door. YOU’RE RIGHT, and I find that double bad.

As far as teaching ID in a humanities class... maybe
http://www.livescience.com/history/top10_intelligent_designs.html
is done pretty well, I suppose you could expand that into an entire unit.

You can also search around that site to find bunches of examples of transitional fossils.
For whatever reason horses are my favorite, and I’m not even a big horse person, but the EVOLUTION to the common horse with one toe is VERY VERY VERY well tracked with LOADS of transitional fossils, in fact modern horses still have the genes for three toes, they just don’t come about.

Sticks
2005-Nov-04, 01:49 PM
I came across ICR a few years back and ended up subscribed to their mailing list. For a while I would use the occasional article to fill space in the church newsletter. (I no longer do this) Back then they offered downloadable programmes in Real Player.

The recent programme on ID I referenced was on MP3, which seems to be new for ICR.

My reference site tends to be Apologetics Press (http://www.apologeticspress.org) as this is associated with our church grouping rather than ICR. Also Apologetics Press were involved in the only seminars on creationism I had the chance to attend. 1987 and 1992.

As far as sources go, like most people I suppose, I have gone through life picking up fragments of arguments and discussions, and at times I can remember the assertion, but the precise citation gets lost in the mists of time, I find this equally frustrating as I alsway preferr to have a source to build a case. Where I can cite sources I do, which I realise sounds like a cop out.

I do hope to read through some of the links given earlier, when I have a bit more time, especially the one given by church people supporting an Old Earth.

Now the OP was some kind of attempt to fit Genesis into evolution, but from what I can see, Genesis is not the problem with that attempt. The problem lies in the book of Exodus chapter 20 verse 11. I would like to see how the OEB in the given links handle that one

As for the link (http://www.livescience.com/history/t...t_designs.html) Hugh Jass supplied it was incomplete as it left out this mythology (http://www.venganza.org/) apart from that it was quite interesting. For a humanities point of view, the mythologies I would put in mostly would be from living religions, but I would not be against the beliefs of the ancient world being mentioned, as they are quite fascinating.

Now re the horse evolution, this is another example of hearing something, but not being able to remember where it came from. What I had heard is that the chart of early horses from Eohippus to the present day is in order from smallest to biggest, but that was not the chronological order that they appeared. This is the only source (http://www.apologeticspress.org/rr/reprints/horse.pdf) I have on that one at this time.

aurora
2005-Nov-04, 07:24 PM
In today's news, a Vatican Cardinal has advised that parishoners should listen to secular science, warning that the Church risks turning into fundamentalism if it ignores scientific reason. Also commented on the previous Pope's observations about evolution.

The story is in a number of outlets, here's three:

Wired News (http://news.lycos.com/wired/story.asp?section=Science&storyId=1112268)

Fox news (http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,174489,00.html)

LA Times (http://www.latimes.com/news/science/wire/sns-ap-vatican-science,1,5074320.story?coll=sns-ap-science-headlines&ctrack=1&cset=true)

Meanwhile, in Kansas (http://www.cnn.com/2005/EDUCATION/11/04/evolution.kansas.reut/index.html)...

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-04, 07:25 PM
Sticks, maybe this would be better taken off line but it is I suppose loosely still on subject. I am very curious where you actually stand in your creation beliefs. You seem to be on the side of YEC, but question that and are looking for a strict interpretation of the bible that fits with mainstream science? I really donít know if youíre going to ever really be satisfied.

In response to Exodus 20 v. 11 you are still holding God to manís definitions of time. If you allow Genesis to be metaphorical our 7 days represent Godís effort in a way that is understandable to US. 2 Peter 3 v 8 is telling us our concept of time, specifically a day, is limited and to God unlimited. Further Revelation 10 v. 6 is a statement about the end of the world and judgment day and what not. It is also saying that to God time is irrelevant. Once we leave this earth spiritually time is irrelevant. Trying to wedge evolution, the big bang, plate tectonics into Genesis to justify creationism is ok for personal beliefs, but is still a metaphysical debate and not science.

I fast glanced over your link to the horseís non-evolution, and really the big problem continues to be IMO the absolute denial of what the fossil record is in reality. If one is to deny the time lines set forth by mainstream science and insist that without a 100% complete fossil record evolution is incorrect it is hard to argue. If ALL fossils were created in ďthe floodĒ then the fossil record would surely have a better representation and be more complete than it is. The situation by which an animal gets fossilized is very very very hard to come by. This article takes science I have read and believe talks about it and then says itís not true for no real reason, :wall: then only compares one of the oldest known horse relatives to modern horse and tells us the jumps are impossible and that no transitional fossils exist. But they do, overall size of the animal is a very small part of this, and in reality they went from small to large to medium back to large along the phylogeny the modern horse sprang from. We are talking about 60 million years. There are 100s of generations of these animals that didnít make it into the fossil record. But we can still clearly see progression especially in their teeth and toes.

As for the main point of the question Creation Vs. Evolution. Neither, in and of itself denies the other. SOME proponents of one or the other obviously feel threatened by the existence of the other and are working vehemently to rid us of it. But really there should be no debate. One is a metaphysical question, and ultimately a personal belief. The other is a scientific approach to describe and understand the world around us. They just donít belong together.

Sticks
2005-Nov-04, 08:04 PM
You are right about some of the arguments that I have come across being outside the scope of this board. I did at one time put them in a forum I administer for our church information website, but the posts there seem to have a time limit and it expired.

I do not like what has happened here and it has resonances in my life elsewhere. Have you ever been friends with two seemingly opposite factions. Each side counts you as a friend and you get on well with both sides. When the factions have a truce, as it were no problem, but when open hostilities break out, you are torn in two as both factions want you to agree with them.

When I was growing up, I was very keen on science, even prefering to watch Open University programmes over standard Childrens TV at one point. When I first became a Christian, this subject was kind of swept under the carpet as something not important, and going along with what is called Theistic evolution, where some Christians believe that Genesis 1 and 2 should not be taken literally. Then I got to go to a week long seminar on Creationism, paid for by someone in the congregation. The lectures, which I have somewhere on cassette tapes, used quotes from the evolutionists talking about the flaws in evolutionary theory. I do understand there is the issue of quote mining, I assume that is taking a quote out of context, but the way the quotes were done seemed to preserve the context.

Untill then I had not heard these doubts expressed by the evolutionary community or some of the assumptions made that suddenly appeared shakey

In short, I find myself in a situation where science and faith have fallen out big time and yet again I am caught in the middle here.

I once heard there was a doctrine called "apparent Age", where everything could have been made in 6 literal 24 hour days, but if you were to say chop a tree down two seconds after it's creation because it is a prfect tree, it would have rings comensurate with it's apparent age.

Is there a possibility that the evidence that the evolutionists have collated for an old universe, could be to do with this apparent age? Is there a way to ascertain this?

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-04, 08:14 PM
I once heard there was a doctrine called "apparent Age", where everything could have been made in 6 literal 24 hour days, but if you were to say chop a tree down two seconds after it's creation because it is a prfect tree, it would have rings comensurate with it's apparent age.

Is there a possibility that the evidence that the evolutionists have collated for an old universe, could be to do with this apparent age? Is there a way to ascertain this?

Actually what your reaching for here is even more ?offensive? to most modern scientists, especially astronomy and geology. It basically says everything is the way it is because God made it to look that way. There is no room for debate, which is what the people making the statement are after. If then why do we study and try and understand? It means there is no true discovery possible.

The argument goes that in Genisis God created Adam as a fully formed adult. God created trees and animals as fully formed (chicken came before the egg). Further the Universe was created as well fully formed. Adam looked to be 25 years old (number is my own for example, no one cares what it is just that he is an adult at the time of creation) and the Universe looks to be 13 billion years old. There is no where for science to go with this.

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-04, 08:49 PM
In short, I find myself in a situation where science and faith have fallen out big time and yet again I am caught in the middle here.:confused:

Sadly, you're not the first person in history with this issue obviously. Like I said, if you're trying to fit Evolution, and further much of science into a strict interpretation of the Bible, I don't think you will ever feel satisfied. :(

One of the big issues with this is that from a pure fundamentalist point of view, if you don’t take Genesis as absolute and literal you raise questions about interpretation. If you raise questions about interpretation you will cease to believe much of what can’t be explained by science, which are at the core of Christianity, immaculate conception, and the resurrection. If these are disallowed the entire religion is lost. So what is happening is that most scientists would really rather ignore creationism, creationists see evolution as a direct threat to their ENITRE belief system. Where to go from here I don’t know? I do know there are good scientists on this forum that speak out against creationism, yet still have strong Christian beliefs. Evolution, the Big Bang and the Geologic time scale don’t want to be a threat to religion and shouldn’t be

Disinfo Agent
2005-Nov-04, 09:11 PM
Omphalos..


A prominent zoologist as well as member of a sect known as the Plymouth Brethren, Gosse was deeply troubled by his conflicting beliefs and hoped to reconcile scientific evidence with biblical precedent by arguing, in a book entitled Omphalos: An Attempt to Untie the Geological Knot (1857), that God had created the world exactly as described in Genesis but with the fossils already embedded in the rocks.

[...]

Observing that his wish for human immortality seems to come from "what we have/ The likest God within the Soul," Tennyson goes on to ask:

Are God and Nature then at strife,
That Nature lends such evil dreams?
So Careful of the type she seems,
So careless of the single life,

That I, considering everywhere
Her secret meaning in her deeds,
And finding that of fifty seeds
She often brings but one to bear,

I falter where I firmly trod,
And falling with my weight of cares
Upon the great world's altar-stairs
That slope thro' darkness up to God,

I stretch lame hands of faith and grope,
And gather dust and chaff and call
To what I feel is Lord of all,
And faintly trust the larger hope.

here (http://darwin.baruch.cuny.edu/faculty/hentziA.html)

Disinfo Agent
2005-Nov-04, 09:42 PM
I haven't heard of evolution being used to justify communism, and I don't know how one would go about that anyways.As a matter of fact, genetics was attacked in the U.S.S.R. Another name to look up: Lysenko. (http://www.comms.dcu.ie/sheehanh/lysenko.htm)

ToSeek
2005-Nov-04, 10:38 PM
I once heard there was a doctrine called "apparent Age", where everything could have been made in 6 literal 24 hour days, but if you were to say chop a tree down two seconds after it's creation because it is a prfect tree, it would have rings comensurate with it's apparent age.

Is there a possibility that the evidence that the evolutionists have collated for an old universe, could be to do with this apparent age? Is there a way to ascertain this?

It's called the Omphalos Argument (http://www.ncseweb.org/resources/articles/2376_issue_02_volume_1_number_2__2_11_2003.asp#The %20Return%20of%20the%20Navel), after the Greek word for "belly button," since it's just an extension of the notion that Adam was created with a navel even though, strictly speaking, there's no reason he should have one.

Obviously, there's no way to tell the difference between a universe created by an omnipotent, omniscient being yesterday with the appearance of age and one that is in fact as old as it seems.

Sticks
2005-Nov-04, 10:48 PM
Actually what your reaching for here is even more ?offensive? to most modern scientists, especially astronomy and geology.

I did not mean to cause offence, I was typing that lot in a hurry and off the top of my head trying to see how both sides could be accommodated, so we can all get along better. :sad:

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-04, 11:16 PM
Don't get me wrong, you didn't offend by making that statement, It is where it came from and who is using it today that is offensive. It is the last ditch effort of some of the most stringent Biblical literalists out there today, when presented with more evidence then they are able to refute. I never knew the origins, Omphalos Argument, I just know how it is used today, and that is to absolutely attack science at it's core, NOT as a compromise.

Here are a couple places I've heard the argument. That might not be the exact article on ICR, but i've run accross it a few times.

http://www.familyradio.com/english/connect/bio/bio_haroldcamping.html

http://icr.cybrhost.com/pubs/btg-a/btg-151a.htm

SirBlack
2005-Nov-05, 03:22 AM
Then I got to go to a week long seminar on Creationism, paid for by someone in the congregation. The lectures, which I have somewhere on cassette tapes, used quotes from the evolutionists talking about the flaws in evolutionary theory. I do understand there is the issue of quote mining, I assume that is taking a quote out of context, but the way the quotes were done seemed to preserve the context.

Untill then I had not heard these doubts expressed by the evolutionary community or some of the assumptions made that suddenly appeared shakey

Unforunately, Creationist sources have a very very bad habit of taking quotes out of context. I've seen a lot of "this evolutionist says evolution is wrong" type quotes, and I don't remember any that weren't taken out of context (and quite obviously once I saw the original material).

Talk Origins has a section call the Quote Mine Project (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/quotes/mine/project.html) devoted to examining these kinds of quotes and showing what they really meant in the original context. If you know of any particular quotes that concern you, you might try seeing if they're listed.


In short, I find myself in a situation where science and faith have fallen out big time and yet again I am caught in the middle here.

That's a tough place to be. My suggestion would be to try to get an understanding of all the issues involved, and then make up your own mind. Find out what claims each side makes. Examine what support they actually have. Try to understand the arguments they present against the other side (and see if they actually make sense). Look for rebuttals against these arguments (and see if those make more sense). And so on.


I once heard there was a doctrine called "apparent Age", where everything could have been made in 6 literal 24 hour days, but if you were to say chop a tree down two seconds after it's creation because it is a prfect tree, it would have rings comensurate with it's apparent age.

Is there a possibility that the evidence that the evolutionists have collated for an old universe, could be to do with this apparent age? Is there a way to ascertain this?

A possibility? Well, yes, in the same way that anything could be possible.
Could we support or find evidence of this? I can't imagine how. This argument exists essentially because the evidence does not support a literal 6-day creation.

One of the problems with the apparent age idea is that it can't work as a scientific theory. There is no possible evidence that could contradict it. Furthermore, I can't imagine what evidence would directly support this idea. Even if everything we know through science turns out to be wrong tomorrow, that still doesn't directly support this idea.

Another issue is that the apparent age argument can work equally well for basicly any belief. One person might claim everything was created 6000 years ago but with the apparent age of 13 billion. Another person might claim it was 10,000 years ago instead. Or I might claim everything was created last Tuesday and even our own memories are part of the apparent age illusion. And in addition to the timeframe, there's no restriction on what supernatural entity did the creating. But there's no real way to show one of these claims as stronger than the others, it all ends up as a matter of belief.

Finally, there are theological issues. The Earth and the universe go beyond simply "looking old", there's a history. For instance, tree rings can tell us more than just how old the tree is. They can show how it grew over time and give an indication what the weather was like each season. Now by this apparent age idea, this history is something that never happened. Some supernatural entity frabricated this history. Wouldn't that be considered deceptive? If one believes that this supernatural entity can't be deceptive, then there is a problem.

TheBlackCat
2005-Nov-05, 05:41 AM
I think Artuhr C. Clarke did a great job of countering the "apparent age" issue in his forward to "An Encyclopedia of Claims, Frauds, and Hoaxes" by James Randi:


Can anyone really believe that God is responsible for a cruel and pointless hoax, by forging billions of years of prehistroy?

Huevos Grandes
2005-Nov-05, 05:58 AM
Omphalos..
...in a book entitled Omphalos: An Attempt to Untie the Geological Knot (1857), that God had created the world exactly as described in Genesis but with the fossils already embedded in the rocks.

This is the problem with those insist upon strict interpretations of the Bible (itself an imperfect document). It raises a huge theological paradox in which God becomes at best a trickster, creating man fully-formed, yet with a navel, and hiding dinosaur fossils in the earth for us to find later. At worst, God is instead a liar, who deceives man in order to keep up the pretense that he created the world so quickly or incompletely, that he "forgot" to actually create living dinosaurs.

I don't wish to attack the nature of peoples' beliefs in divine presence, just that one "story" for how life came to exist and grow has no place as science. That said:

The Case for Evolution

1. The fossil record - incomplete, yet supports evolution by means of natural selection.
2. Evolution is visible today in bacteria, and some lower animals.
3. Genotype/phenotype expression and change visible in populations throughout recorded history.
4. Human and other animal genomes successfully demonstrated to be tied to an evolutionary "tree", where common ancestors can be surmised for man and chimpanzee, dogs and flatworms, and sharks and cuttlefish.
5. Complexity of design can be seen to be tied to necessity, such as blind cavefish invalidating the need for eyes, etc.

The Case for Creationsim

1. One or more gods formed it out of nothingness, leaving no visible evidence. It was a one-shot deal where everything was created at once, and never again. Presumably a set of "rules" to govern species propagation, population genetics, and random (and human-caused) extinction events is established as "Nature".

---

I'm not a big believer in Achem's Razor, but certainly we shouldn't jump to the conclusion that the most fanciful reason must be the correct one. Divinity and evolution can co-exist, but not in the strict black-and-white world some of these religious kooks (e.g. politicians in Kansas, Pat Robertson, etc.) would have you believe in.

TheThorn
2005-Nov-05, 06:01 AM
Some object to the "omphalos" argument because it brings scinece to a halt. But it also damages religion.


Now by this apparent age idea, this history is something that never happened. Some supernatural entity frabricated this history. Wouldn't that be considered deceptive? If one believes that this supernatural entity can't be deceptive, then there is a problem.

To me that's the real problem with this argument. The people proposing it have painted the Creator as a collossal prankster, who is trying to deceive us all. Worse yet, He will severely punish those of us who fall for his perfect prank.

Some theology that is.

Not to mention how difficult it is to square that image of God with the God of love and compassion described in that Book.

Sticks
2005-Nov-05, 06:44 AM
At that creation seminar in Scotland the claim was that the fossils are not part of the doctrine of apparent age but a result of the global flood of Noah.

Now there are references outside the Bible of a large catastrophic flood such as the Babylonian Flood tablets held in the British Museum. There is also archeaological evidence of a large scale flooding, albeit not a global flood
link (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/923400.stm)

Come to think of it, assuming the evolutionary scenario, during one of the ice ages the North Sea was dry land, come the end of the ice age and that place is flooded it musthave seemed like a massive flood.

Wolverine
2005-Nov-05, 06:47 AM
Speaking of flood myths (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/flood-myths.html)...

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-05, 08:26 AM
At that creation seminar in Scotland the claim was that the fossils are not part of the doctrine of apparent age but a result of the global flood of Noah.


And the ability to have a global flood is that the earth had almost no topography, most of the water that is now oceans was under the crust, and plate tectonics as we know it didn't start until after the flood. Here we get back to timelines and ignoring everything we know and accept about age dating rocks and fossils, and asking for A WHOLE LOTTA earth moving in a short period of time. Basically with as much rock moving and canyons forming and mountians jumping up, and the fact that the flood was supposed to kill everyone but Noah and his family having flood myths from around the world is contradictory to the Bible, who carried on the stories of the flood? What there should be is extensive earthquake and earth moving myths, outside the Bible flood stories really donít help either position, and probably conflict with the teaching of the Bible.

Plate tectonics is a fairly new concept <30 years of general acceptance. More than most any other major theory in science this one has been put through the ringer by the mainstream before gaining complete acceptance. It effectively changed EVERYTHING in the science of geology. My advisor back in college publicly debated against plate tectonics as its acceptance turned both his masters and PhD theses into door stops. Overwhelming evidence came in, he changed his mind as did all mainstream geologists. To say the entire fossil record came from The Flood, and further to try and support The Flood with any of the arguments about geology world wide related to The Flood just wonít fly.

Rocks are cool. :cool: Rocks that move are hot.:evil:

Taks
2005-Nov-05, 08:34 AM
I'm not a big believer in Achem's Razor, but certainly we shouldn't jump to the conclusion that the most fanciful reason must be the correct one.actually, in this instance, i would argue that the latter (creation) is the more complex (fanciful) explanation. it requires the existence of this omnipotent being that did all the creating at once. occam's razor would certainly agree that an accident, and subsequent mutations are much simpler in scope.

taks

Sticks
2005-Nov-05, 09:52 AM
actually, in this instance, i would argue that the latter (creation) is the more complex (fanciful) explanation. it requires the existence of this omnipotent being that did all the creating at once. occam's razor would certainly agree that an accident, and subsequent mutations are much simpler in scope.

taks

As opposed to nothing giving rise to something, non living giving rise to that which is living, unconscious giving rise to conscious?

Sticks
2005-Nov-05, 10:04 AM
Speaking of flood myths (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/flood-myths.html)...

Thankyou for that I have book marked that link :dance: .

I am not sure it would be appropriate to discuss flood myths per se as this thread is about evolution verses creation, unless you feel it would not be too off topic.

BenderBendingRodriguez
2005-Nov-05, 10:21 AM
As opposed to nothing giving rise to something, non living giving rise to that which is living, unconscious giving rise to conscious?

That's not evolution, but abiogenesis. And it has a base (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miller_experiment)


Simply speaking, Occam's Razor is:


Given two equally predictive theories, choose the simpler.

So we either have the Abiogenesis/evolution-combination, or we have a theory that needs to drag in something else (in this case, a deity/creator).

The simpler is evolution/abiogenesis.

Sticks
2005-Nov-05, 12:28 PM
That's not evolution, but abiogenesis. And it has a base (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miller_experiment)


But even that experiment had its critics as voiced on the discussion section (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Miller-Urey_experiment)



So we either have the Abiogenesis/evolution-combination, or we have a theory that needs to drag in something else (in this case, a deity/creator).

The simpler is evolution/abiogenesis.

But the first theory, even before getting to abiogenesis requires there to be matter and nothing giving rise to something.

From this article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_law_of_thermodynamics)


The law states that the total inflow of energy into a system must equal the total outflow of energy from the system, plus the change in the energy contained within the system. In other words, energy can be converted from one form to another, but it cannot be created or destroyed.


For the Abiogenesis/evolution-combination to succeed, it must overcome the problems raised by the discussion about the Urey-Miller experiment and overturn a fundamental physical law.

To Quote Albert Einstein

"Thermodynamics is the only physical theory of universal content which, within the framework of the applicability of its basic concepts, I am convinced will never be overthrown."

Then there is the probability of life starting once that hurdle is over come. If you go to this article (http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2575) and do a search for "Borel", it discusses a certain probability law and quotes probabilities assigned.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-05, 01:24 PM
I personally won't touch creationism on any level. This is the way I see it personally:

Suppose there was a creator. Well, what is this creator?

A) Is it a single creator? Perhaps everything was created by an alien race? Perhaps it's a group of spirits? Perhaps it's a giant creature that sneezed the universe out of its nose?

B) Where does life itself come from? There is evidence that bacteria is on asteroids, and the fact that there is said bacteria on multiple planets, there's evidence that these asteroids "impregnated" our worlds. Thus, anything could have "made" that bacteria -- from aliens to a "creator" to a High School alien doing a Science Project. "Get this - I'm going to construct life! Then, I'll send them to other worlds and watch them evolve!"

C) If you want to subscribe to a religious denomination, which one will you subscribe to? Christianity? Judaism? Islam? Perhaps the Pagan faiths? Perhaps the belief in the Flying Spaghetti Monster? Once you put forth one belief, you keep down other religious beliefs.

Suppose I claim that Zeus made the world by throwing a huge hammer to shatter a huge ball of rock, and that made the universe. Without science, how can you prove me wrong? One faith subscribes to another, and thus, we're stuck with seperate viewpoints of how the world was created. Now, you can believe whatever you want - but that doesn't make the belief correct. And, something important -- Only one belief can really be right (perhaps more than one - perhaps there was a Creator(s), and he caused evolution), but then all other beliefs that differ from it would be wrong -- whether on a minor issue (Christianity vs. Catholocism), and sometimes by a major way (Pagan faiths vs. monotheistic faiths). So if you rely merely on faith, then you don't really learn what the right answer is.

So you see, there's FAR too much speculation OR blind faith, based upon merely Creationism. I'd rather pick the path of science, and science points at evolution. To put the two together, is to risk dimming down Evolution and Science.

The main reason I oppose this is because -- what reference point would you use? The Bible? The Quran (sp?)? A pagan book of beliefs? The Egyptian's Book of the Dead?

Intelligent Design sidesteps this by going under the idea of just "Intelligent Design", instead of a particular intelligent design. That's okay. But then it uses very unscientific means throughout it...

So far, I haven't seen a single denomination of Creationism that I would like to see affecting science and scientists at all.

BenderBendingRodriguez
2005-Nov-05, 01:35 PM
But even that experiment had its critics as voiced on the discussion section (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Miller-Urey_experiment)



But the first theory, even before getting to abiogenesis requires there to be matter and nothing giving rise to something.

From this article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_law_of_thermodynamics)


For the Abiogenesis/evolution-combination to succeed, it must overcome the problems raised by the discussion about the Urey-Miller experiment and overturn a fundamental physical law.

To Quote Albert Einstein


Then there is the probability of life starting once that hurdle is over come. If you go to this article (http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2575) and do a search for "Borel", it discusses a certain probability law and quotes probabilities assigned.

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/abioprob/borelfaq.html

Borel's Law.


In short, Borel says what many a talk.origins poster has said time and time again when confronted with such creationist arguments: namely, that probability estimates that ignore the non-random elements predetermined by physics and chemistry are meaningless.


Using the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics in this context is wrong. It applies in closed systems, while life is not a closed system. (something like that, I'm not an expert, just an interested fellow ;))

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-misconceptions.html#thermo

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-05, 02:53 PM
Oh, and Sticks, I have something else to comment on this quote:


Evolutionary theory was used to justify... the Nazi Final solution

Well, this is a quote I dug up:

"The national government ... will maintain and defend the foundations on which the power of our nation rests. It will offer strong protection to Christianity as the very basis of our collective morality." Adolf Hitler

Source: Religious Freedom Coalition of the Southeast (http://www.tylwythteg.com/enemies/enemies.html)

I'm not sure on the validity of the quote, but from my own personal research, it seems accurate.

Does that mean that people should give up their beliefs on Christianity, just as you would shirk Evolution for this?

Huevos Grandes
2005-Nov-05, 04:05 PM
actually, in this instance, i would argue that the latter (creation) is the more complex (fanciful) explanation. it requires the existence of this omnipotent being that did all the creating at once. occam's razor would certainly agree that an accident, and subsequent mutations are much simpler in scope.

taks

This is what I intended to state. Sorry if I wasn't fully clear...

Sticks
2005-Nov-05, 05:37 PM
"The national government ... will maintain and defend the foundations on which the power of our nation rests. It will offer strong protection to Christianity as the very basis of our collective morality." Adolf Hitler

Source: Religious Freedom Coalition of the Southeast (http://www.tylwythteg.com/enemies/enemies.html)

I'm not sure on the validity of the quote, but from my own personal research, it seems accurate.

Does that mean that people should give up their beliefs on Christianity, just as you would shirk Evolution for this?

I followed that link and then followed to what is suspiciously looking like 9/11 conspiracy theorists.

On the probabilities, the ones I saw came from non-creationists such as Fred Hoyle (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_Hoyle) and Carl Sagan (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Sagan)

Disinfo Agent
2005-Nov-05, 06:09 PM
I followed that link and then followed to what is suspiciously looking like 9/11 conspiracy theorists.Should that make any difference?

Anyway, here's another source: Gott mit uns (http://www.nobeliefs.com/Hitler1.htm).

Gillianren
2005-Nov-05, 06:34 PM
Or just read Mein Kampf--Hitler was (in his mind, and ignoring any interpretations based on his actions) Christian. That's one of the reasons he was so anti-Semitic--they killed Christ, after all.

If, as Noachian flood/fossil believers would say, all fossils come from the Flood, ponder this: Noah was supposed to bring every animal on the Ark. Why, then, don't we see trilobites anymore? Did Noah forget them? Why no dinosaurs? Why is the cut-off date for all these species allegedly at the same time as the Flood? And, come to that, why aren't they mentioned in the pre-Flood sections of the Bible?

Sticks
2005-Nov-05, 07:05 PM
If, as Noachian flood/fossil believers would say, all fossils come from the Flood, ponder this: Noah was supposed to bring every animal on the Ark. Why, then, don't we see trilobites anymore? Did Noah forget them? Why no dinosaurs? Why is the cut-off date for all these species allegedly at the same time as the Flood? And, come to that, why aren't they mentioned in the pre-Flood sections of the Bible?

FWIW

The answer I have heard given is that they did go into the ark, may be as infant creatures for large creatures such as dinosaurs. Then after the flood because the Earth had been so drastically altered by the flood and in order to allow the water to be accommodated, these cratures were not able to survive in the changed environment and so died out.

aurora
2005-Nov-05, 07:17 PM
The global flood is so laughable, that the answers people have invented to try to justify their belief in it are past funny into pitiful.

Basically, the geologic record is completely and totally in disagreement with there ever being a global flood. Not to mention the physical impossibilities involved with the supposed ark.


Look, here come the koala bears swimming from Australia to the middle east, eating only eucalyptus which does not grow in asia. And over there are the pandas, marching from China to the middle east, eating only bamboo. And there are the llamas swimming from south America to the middle east...

Should we talk about reptiles, amphibians, and plants?

Fram
2005-Nov-05, 08:02 PM
The global flood is so laughable, that the answers people have invented to try to justify their belief in it are past funny into pitiful.

Basically, the geologic record is completely and totally in disagreement with there ever being a global flood. Not to mention the physical impossibilities involved with the supposed ark.


Look, here come the koala bears swimming from Australia to the middle east, eating only eucalyptus which does not grow in asia. And over there are the pandas, marching from China to the middle east, eating only bamboo. And there are the llamas swimming from south America to the middle east...

Should we talk about reptiles, amphibians, and plants?
I think Noach only took two of every animal (well, the current cop-out seems to be two of every major group, whicvh somehow contained all the genetic info needed to get all species we have nowadays), but I don't think he took plants as well. Supposedly they were all able to survive the flood somehow... We know that olives grew again after the flood, so I presume the other plants did the same.
I wonder what the explanation is for the extinction of ichtyosaurs and the like...

TheBlackCat
2005-Nov-05, 08:52 PM
Or what about freshwater fish, for that matter? They would die very quickly in saltwater. Or mosquitoes, which cannot breed in saltwater and live as adults much shorter than 40 days and 40 nights (which, technically, isn't literally 40 days and 40 nights, in Hebrew at that time 40 was basically the same as "very many", so it really means "very many days and very many nights")

Sticks
2005-Nov-05, 10:22 PM
Have just watched a BBC production on their digital channel BBC3 called walking with Monsters, about the time before the dinosaurs. At the beginning it mentioned that the early Earth was hit by the planet Thea, the ensuing break up of the two planets formed our present Earth and the moon.

Where did they get this from and who named this planet Thea?

Again it showed behaviour of creatures without saying how they got this information. I looked on the BBC website to see if there was a more info site, like they did with walking with Dinosaurs, but there was nothing.

Essentially they were presenting speculation as fact in the style of a wild life documentary.

This is yet yet another issue I have with at least the presentation of evolution. Some of the stuff that is debated or is based on speculation is passed off as that's how it was fact. I do not know if this is just an issue to take up with the media. When they did a series on dinosaurs earlier this year, were quite careful to mention what bits were speculation based on creatures today.

TheBlackCat
2005-Nov-06, 12:00 AM
This is a TV show. Please do not take a TV documentary made for the sake of making money and entertaining people and then try to pass it off as representative of how scientists work. I am sorry, but that is just wrong. It was made by a television company. Please show me examples where real biologists tried to take speculation and pass it off as fact. That would be something. But taking the work of a bunch of non-scientists working for a TV company and trying to somehow draw the conclusion that is how science works is ludicrous. You can't hold scientists responsible when the media takes a hold of limited or tentative information and blows it way out of proportion in terms of certainty and reliability. It happens all the time, an issue which makes many scientists quite angry. So don't turn around and try to blame the scientists for it. This is yet another thing that creationists like to do that makes scientists angry at them.

ASEI
2005-Nov-06, 12:30 AM
I think they're talking about the impact formation model for our moon. If so, it would have to be waaaay way before dinosaurs, or life in general for that matter, in the very early solar system.

At least, according to the mainstream timeline of our solar development coupled with the impact formation assumption.

Under the impact formation model, some object about the size of mars would have had to have smacked into our planet and merged with it, casting off a moon sized blob and a whole lot of fragments. Apparently this one has some support based on the moon's composition, and what sort of composition a moon should have if formed from such an impact.

There are other models, such as the capture model, where it gets captured in some way after forming elsewhere in the solar system.

Here's some information about the impact model without speculative fluff that the TV show was probably loaded with.
http://www.swri.edu/3pubs/ttoday/spring99/moon.htm

SirBlack
2005-Nov-06, 03:37 AM
I just saw what sounds like the same show on the Discovery Channel. It was called Before the Dinosaurs. I guess they decided to change the title for showing it in the US.

Anyway, there was indeed a lot of speculation thrown in among information we actually have evidence for. And unfortunately the show did not make any attempt at distinguishing which was which. So while it was somewhat entertaining, you do have to keep in mind that entertainment was the main purpose of the show. Not necessarily scientific accuracy, as TheBlackCat points out.

Personally, I think TV and the mass media in general have been getting worse in this aspect too. Scientific accuracy is down. Sensationalism is up.

So basicly, if you want to really know about science and evolution and all of that, you'll have to go to better sources of information that actually have the purpose of being educational.

aurora
2005-Nov-06, 04:56 AM
I'd love to see a titanothere. And an oriodont.

Found a titanothere tooth in Wyoming once.

They were creatures that lived in relatively recent times (miocene) compared to dinosaurs. But in ancient times compared to mammoths and giant sloths and sabre tooth cats.

Wolverine
2005-Nov-06, 07:06 AM
Thankyou for that I have book marked that link :dance: .

I am not sure it would be appropriate to discuss flood myths per se as this thread is about evolution verses creation, unless you feel it would not be too off topic.
My intent was to illustrate how common flood myths have been in a variety of cultures. If you'd like to start a separate thread dedicated to the topic, feel free.

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-06, 07:27 AM
I just saw what sounds like the same show on the Discovery Channel. It was called Before the Dinosaurs. I guess they decided to change the title for showing it in the US.

Anyway, there was indeed a lot of speculation thrown in among information we actually have evidence for. And unfortunately the show did not make any attempt at distinguishing which was which. So while it was somewhat entertaining, you do have to keep in mind that entertainment was the main purpose of the show. Not necessarily scientific accuracy, as TheBlackCat points out.

Personally, I think TV and the mass media in general have been getting worse in this aspect too. Scientific accuracy is down. Sensationalism is up.

So basicly, if you want to really know about science and evolution and all of that, you'll have to go to better sources of information that actually have the purpose of being educational.

Ditto, I couldn’t watch the whole show it was absolutely horrible. :sick: I know these shows have scientific advisors but it seems more and more the director and the computer graphics artists are given way too much artistic freedom. :liar: The way it was presented in this show, was beyond just speculation. Like they took the most fanciful scenario and presented it not as one possible interpretation but as though they could deduce this entire story from what we know. There are shows done in this same fashion on living animals that are about as bad, and I think this one was reaching to be the same kinda documentary. I think the BA needs to do some write up on these, poor guy though would have to sit through the whole thing. :boohoo: Presenting information like this is bad science, if for no other reason it makes the true science harder to understand and believe.

I would like to think this isn’t an issue with evolution, it is an issue with the media. There were truths in there. There is also quite a lot that can be deduced from fossils even that old. Based on the rocks you find them, what other animals were around, plants in the area, certain physical characteristics of the skeleton. You can make some pretty good guesses about behavior and some speculation is, well more founded than others. This is actually a fundamental in evolution. Looking to try and determine based on these factors, a total picture of the animal you only know from fossils. Studying evolution is not just looking at physical aspects but trying to figure behavioral aspects as well. How do we think this animal, that we know is related to bears and dogs, acted?


Here's some information about the impact model without speculative fluff that the TV show was probably loaded with.
http://www.swri.edu/3pubs/ttoday/spring99/moon.htm

This link makes me happy, :clap: thanks. I was about to send out a question to the general science board about whether this was the generally accepted model now or was there still some debate. School was 10 years ago and looking at all arguments from both sides I liked the captured body model more, but from what i've seen on different boards and the BA Blog it looks more like impact/ejecta model is current. Is that the case?

aurora
2005-Nov-06, 06:32 PM
I was about to send out a question to the general science board about whether this was the generally accepted model now or was there still some debate. School was 10 years ago and looking at all arguments from both sides I liked the captured body model more, but from what i've seen on different boards and the BA Blog it looks more like impact/ejecta model is current. Is that the case?

If you are asking about the formation of Earth's moon, the currently accepted theory is that it was formed from a Mars-sized impactor striking the early Earth.

That best fits the available information, including the content of the samples returned from the Moon in the Apollo and Russian rover missions.

Mike T
2005-Nov-08, 02:55 PM
[Incendiary religious post deleted by moderator]

MikeT, your comments far exceed what's allowed on this board regarding discussion of religion. Please note the relevant rule:


12. Politics & Religion

Due to the contentious nature of these subjects, forum participants are strongly advised to avoid discussing religious and political issues. Please don't begin or contribute to a topic that's merely going to incite or fuel a flame war.

However, the following exceptions apply:

A) Political impact upon space programs, exploration, and science.

B) Focused, polite discussion of concepts such as creationism and "intelligent design" which bear direct relevance to astronomy and science, for the purposes of conversing about and addressing misconceptions.

C) Focused, polite discussion of the difference between astronomy (including cosmology) and religion

Partisan political debate is unwelcome and should be undertaken elsewhere. The same applies to debates purely religious in nature. Likewise, proselytizing will not be allowed. In short, you are allowed to discuss politics and religion within a very limited scope where they affect space and space exploration, astronomy, and science. Nothing more. If you really really need to talk about these topics with someone, take it to email or to another bulletin board.

You've been banned for a week. Any further offense will result in a permanent banning.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-08, 03:06 PM
Man, Mike T, you just lit up a flamethrower and fuelled it. I'm ducking outta this one.

captain swoop
2005-Nov-08, 03:59 PM
Incoming!!!

Faultline
2005-Nov-08, 04:14 PM
Yeah Mike T, that was a flame against religion if I ever saw one. I wouldn't be surprised if you get banned for this.

Jim
2005-Nov-08, 04:35 PM
This is the problem with those insist upon strict interpretations of the Bible...

I was watching a rerun of The West Wing in which a Senator asked Toby Ziegler if he believed that the Bible was the literal word of God. Toby replied (loosely), "Yes... but I don't think either one of us is smart enough to know what it really means."

ToSeek
2005-Nov-08, 05:04 PM
MikeT has been banned for a week for his post.

As for the rest of you, please don't speculate or anticipate what a moderator is going to do about a specific post. If you find one objectionable, just report it and leave the rest to us.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-08, 05:09 PM
Man, Mike T, you just lit up a flamethrower and fuelled it. I'm ducking outta this one.

I stand behind this statement, though it didn't have to do with prophesizing the responce of the local Powers that Be.

(What? I can call myself a cool person when I quote myself... can't I? :P )

Crum
2005-Nov-09, 05:00 AM
This is a TV show. Please do not take a TV documentary made for the sake of making money and entertaining people and then try to pass it off as representative of how scientists work. I am sorry, but that is just wrong. It was made by a television company. Please show me examples where real biologists tried to take speculation and pass it off as fact. That would be something. But taking the work of a bunch of non-scientists working for a TV company and trying to somehow draw the conclusion that is how science works is ludicrous. You can't hold scientists responsible when the media takes a hold of limited or tentative information and blows it way out of proportion in terms of certainty and reliability. It happens all the time, an issue which makes many scientists quite angry. So don't turn around and try to blame the scientists for it. This is yet another thing that creationists like to do that makes scientists angry at them.
I agree with the content of your post, but I also agree with Sticks' position about this program. For a large segment of society, casual exposure to science takes the form of watching these entertain-umentaries. Much public opinion is formed by the vaguely defined concepts and embellishments (sp?) presented in this kind of presentation. This kind of error and worse is exhibited by scientific, religious and political parties all the time.

I don't think Sticks was trying to "blame the scientists". His qualm was with the presentation of evolution, and this is an example of bad presentation. From my brief time reading Sticks' posts, he strikes me as a devil's advocate sort, and I've seen several statements by him here and in other threads that indicate he stands fairly open-minded, somewhat undecided due to perceived errors on both sides of this argument. That he is presenting the creationist side here, I am guessing, is due in part to the otherwise absence of argument for that side.

Sticks, if I am mistaken, feel free to correct me. In that case, I may have to take the devil's advocate side on myself. Odd that defending creationism would be placed under that category, though, isn't it? I might just pass on it. :D

It is allowed to intelligently debate an issue solely for the sake of the debate, isn't it, regardless of whether you actually hold that position personally?

hewhocaves
2005-Nov-09, 05:42 AM
FWIW

The answer I have heard given is that they did go into the ark, may be as infant creatures for large creatures such as dinosaurs. Then after the flood because the Earth had been so drastically altered by the flood and in order to allow the water to be accommodated, these cratures were not able to survive in the changed environment and so died out.


you know... that just sounds cruel. I mean god had to know the future and that they were going to die after the flood was over anyway. And what about noah?? Surely, he could have made the ark smaller if it wasn't for the doomed animals.

hmmm... maybe they ran out of food on the ark. you know, bronto burgers can be really tasty.

All in good fun :-)
John

Tacitus
2005-Nov-09, 06:12 AM
Chalk up one for the good guys (and no, I don't mean the Democrats) - the Dover school board that sought to water down science by introducting Intelligent Design (Creationism) into their schools have been swept out of office -- none has retained their seat:

http://www.yorkdispatch.com/local/ci_3196053

Alan Bonsell, who disgraced himself in court and was lucky not to be stuck with a perjury charge was only three votes out of last place.

Congratulations to the Dover parents for doing the right thing. Perhaps their children will avoid the same fate that all Kansas kids are now faced with after their school board's shameful decision to redefine science.

Tacitus
2005-Nov-09, 06:26 AM
I don't really understand why some people try so hard in attempting to rationalize the Noah's Ark fable. Defenders seem so intent on defining the precise logistics that would had allowed Noah to stow and keep so many animals alive for over a year in a single boat.

I mean, this is God we're talking about here, a supernatural being. All rational bets are off. Perhaps the Ark was the prototypical TARDIS (bigger on the inside than on the out) equipped with a stasis device that allowed the year that passed on the outside seem like seconds on the inside. And why couldn't God have teleported the animals in and out of the ark, so they would not have had to suffer through thousand-mile treks from and to their homelands?

I'm not trying to offend anyone here. It just seems that the whole Ark debate is pointless. The more you try and rationalize something which--let's face it--is a supernatural event from beginning to end, the deeper the hole you end up digging for yourself. In the end, it doesn't achieve anything since, if it did happen, the only realistic explanation is that "God did it".

You could say that the devil is in the details... :)

Van Rijn
2005-Nov-09, 07:52 AM
I went through the list a long time ago: It was obvious that the writer had no idea about breeding populations, what would happen if it rained fast enough to cover the highest mountain with water within 40 days, that plants would also need to be preserved, that fish would die (ocean fish can't take rapid environment changes, freshwater fish might actually do better - but what happens to their food?) and so on and so forth. There are dozens of issues. Sure, you can go with "Goddidit" but what is the point of the ark? It is utterly useless.

Or ... you can look at the story from the point of view of somebody that doesn't have any of this modern knowledge, but lives somewhere where it regularly floods (as most places did where people lived) and sees farmers put animals on rafts during floods. To him it would make sense.

So: It is a story that would make perfect sense to someone in an ancient culture, but makes no sense today. Unless you invoke magic, it is what it appears: A story written for its culture. No more, no less.

captain swoop
2005-Nov-09, 09:16 AM
Or ... you can look at the story from the point of view of somebody that doesn't have any of this modern knowledge, but lives somewhere where it regularly floods (as most places did where people lived) and sees farmers put animals on rafts during floods. To him it would make sense.

Gilgamesh?

Swift
2005-Nov-09, 01:53 PM
The CNN.com QuickVote poll this morning is

Do you think intelligent design should be taught alongside evolution in schools?
As of 8:51 EST, the vote was Yes: 29% (23391 votes), No: 71% (56347 votes). :dance: (for what its worth)

Swift
2005-Nov-09, 01:55 PM
Chalk up one for the good guys (and no, I don't mean the Democrats) - the Dover school board that sought to water down science by introducting Intelligent Design (Creationism) into their schools have been swept out of office -- none has retained their seat:

http://www.yorkdispatch.com/local/ci_3196053

Alan Bonsell, who disgraced himself in court and was lucky not to be stuck with a perjury charge was only three votes out of last place.

Congratulations to the Dover parents for doing the right thing. Perhaps their children will avoid the same fate that all Kansas kids are now faced with after their school board's shameful decision to redefine science.
:clap:

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-09, 08:57 PM
Or just read Mein Kampf--Hitler was (in his mind, and ignoring any interpretations based on his actions) Christian. That's one of the reasons he was so anti-Semitic--they killed Christ, after all.
You See, This Is Why, I've ALWAYS Had a Problem, With Exclusionist Religions ...

Heck, There are People, Alive Today, Who Will Tell you, The Nazis are In Heaven, And their Victims, Are in Hell!!!

Unfortunately, they Also, Seem to Be, The Same People, Who Are Pushing The Hardest, For ID in Schools!!!

And, If you Have Any Doubts, How Far Some People Will Go, and Don't Mind, Being Deeply Disturbed, Just Check Out, Fred Phelps' Web Site, And Don't Say, I Didn't Warn ya'!!!

Faultline
2005-Nov-09, 10:48 PM
You See, This Is Why, I've ALWAYS Had a Problem, With Exclusionist Religions ...

Heck, There are People, Alive Today, Who Will Tell you, The Nazis are In Heaven, And their Victims, Are in Hell!!!

Unfortunately, they Also, Seem to Be, The Same People, Who Are Pushing The Hardest, For ID in Schools!!!

And, If you Have Any Doubts, How Far Some People Will Go, and Don't Mind, Being Deeply Disturbed, Just Check Out, Fred Phelps' Web Site, And Don't Say, I Didn't Warn ya'!!!

I just, had to ask, are you, William Shatner?

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-09, 10:50 PM
I just, had to ask, are you, William Shatner?
No ...

He Stutters LESS, than I Do!!!!

:lol:

Sticks
2005-Nov-10, 12:16 AM
Heck, There are People, Alive Today, Who Will Tell you, The Nazis are In Heaven, And their Victims, Are in Hell!!!


I don't say that :sad:



Unfortunately, they Also, Seem to Be, The Same People, Who Are Pushing The Hardest, For ID in Schools!!!


Those ID people are pushing to put it in the wrong place.



And, If you Have Any Doubts, How Far Some People Will Go, and Don't Mind, Being Deeply Disturbed, Just Check Out, Fred Phelps' Web Site, And Don't Say, I Didn't Warn ya'!!!

Who? :confused:

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-10, 12:22 AM
I don't say that :sad:
For Which, we Are ALL, Grateful!!!


Those ID people are pushing to put it in the wrong place.
Let's Hope, They Figure, That Out, In Kansas, Soon!!!


Who? :confused:
Fred Phelps?

Just The Guy Who Picketted, The Funeral of Mathew Shepard; Ya' Know, The Kind of Guy, The Neo-Nazis, Point At, And Say, "Dude, Uncool!!!"

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-10, 12:27 AM
[QUOTE=ZaphodBeeblebrox]

Fred Phelps?

QUOTE]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rev._Fred_Phelps :evil:

Hard to put this guy into words.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-10, 12:39 AM
I looked at Fred Phelp's website. I nearly threw up.

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-10, 12:44 AM
I looked at Fred Phelp's website. I nearly threw up.
We ALL Do ...

Although, I Am, a Little Worried, I Have Performed a Logical Fallacy ...

By, Holding Up, The Worst, Of my Phillisophical Foes, Have I Committed, a Form, Of The Strawman Fallacy?

:think:

Tacitus
2005-Nov-10, 12:45 AM
Just to warn people properly - the Fred Phelps website is one of those places you worry about even visiting in case some misdirected FBI agent takes notice and lumps you in with that lot. It's thoroughly vile - I would recommend you stay away.

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-10, 12:48 AM
Just to warn people properly - the Fred Phelps website is one of those places you worry about even visiting in case some misdirected FBI agent takes notice and lumps you in with that lot. It's thoroughly vile - I would recommend you stay away.
I TOLD, them That!!!

It Just, Makes them, More Eager!!!!

:wall:

Tacitus
2005-Nov-10, 01:00 AM
I TOLD, them That!!!

It Just, Makes them, More Eager!!!!

:wall:

Hey - serves them right if they do...

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-10, 01:04 AM
Since I looked at the website, guess it "serves me right" then >.>

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-10, 01:12 AM
Since I looked at the website, guess it "serves me right" then >.>
Naw ...

I'd NEVER, Say that ...

What Really, Creeps you Out, though:

Is, he and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Share a Job Description; Baptist Reverend!

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-10, 01:14 AM
Which furthers my hypothesis that religion does not automatically grant morals or ethics ;)

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-10, 01:25 AM
I TOLD, them That!!!

It Just, Makes them, More Eager!!!!

:wall:

Which is why I posted the wikipedia link.


That and I can't get to his personal site from work. Blocked by big brother for "Racism and Hate"

AstroSmurf
2005-Nov-10, 09:40 AM
OT: Ah, yes, Fred Phelps... he was in the Swedish news semi-recently. There's a home-brewn fundamentalist reverend here who's been charged with "incitement against minority" (or however you translate it) after preaching against homosexuals. Phelps wanted to come over here and 1) speak up for him and 2) spoke some harsh words against our king of all people, for allowing this sort of thing to happen. I can't recall if he actually came here; at any rate, not even the accused reverend wanted him to come.

I might mention that the king has slightly *less* political power than the average Joe here, since he's expressly forbidden to interfere in politics, and thus isn't allowed to vote. (Then again, there's the unofficial power - the royals are powerful opinion-builders)

captain swoop
2005-Nov-10, 10:28 AM
Like Queenie in the UK

tbm
2005-Nov-10, 09:58 PM
When told the news that the Dover, PA members of the school board that voted for ID in the classroom were voted out and more moderate ones were voted in, Rev. Pat Robertson said this: "If there is a disaster in your area, don't turn to God.You just voted God out of your city."


What a twit.

tbm

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-10, 10:35 PM
"If there is a disaster in your area, don't turn to God.You just voted God out of your city."

Eh, that's okay. I'll rely on science to predict it,the people that own the land and businesses to protect it, doctors to heal the injured, and construction workers to make repairs.

I don't need to "Turn to God".

Faultline
2005-Nov-10, 10:44 PM
I think the Kansas school board recently put their toe in the water with the results of the last series of hearings over ID and Evolution.

The result was to have it be required teaching that "Evolution has come under criticism for inconsistancies in the theory."

Oh, and some new re-write of the definition of science, which I couldn't seem to find the new one.

What's that all about?

Sticks
2005-Nov-10, 10:46 PM
What has happened to the original poster, who IIRC started this thread with trying to shoe horn the Genesis account into evolution?

Is anyone beginning to suspect the old "Light the blue touch paper and retire to a safe distance?" :think:

The mistake the IDers did was to put their pet subject into a science class instead of humanities, that way they get their message into the school system without getting people's backs up, kind of how they did it in the UK, from my experience.

Faultline
2005-Nov-10, 10:54 PM
Sticks, in America, the message doesn't belong in public schools. Our constitution forbids the government from promoting any religion or even promoting it non-denominationally.

We have such a blend of cultures and religions that it would be wrong for tax money, supplied by people of many faiths as well as by many aetheists, to be used to teach any form of spirituality.

But that's another matter.

Jim
2005-Nov-10, 11:08 PM
... (deleted) Pat Robertson said this: "If there is a disaster in your area, don't turn to God. You just voted God out of your city."

Is this the same Pat Robertson who wanted the CIA to "take out" the President of Venezuela?

I find it hard to refer to him as "Reverend."

Jim
2005-Nov-10, 11:11 PM
Oh, and some new re-write of the definition of science, which I couldn't seem to find the new one.

What's that all about?

I haven't found it either, but I saw the chairman of the Kansas BOE on tv saying they had "expanded the definition of science." As far as I can tell, it is now "scientific" to say, "We don't know how it happens that way. It must be magic."

aurora
2005-Nov-10, 11:17 PM
Is this the same Pat Robertson who wanted the CIA to "take out" the President of Venezuela?

I find it hard to refer to him as "Reverend."

And, IIRC, he also said awhile back that hurricanes in Florida were God's punishment for gays.

Although that might have been Jerry Falwell. I get them mixed up.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-10, 11:20 PM
Or Fred Phelps. :p If you name a natural disaster, Phelps would say it was God's hate.

Crum
2005-Nov-11, 12:31 AM
Eh, that's okay. I'll rely on science to predict it,the people that own the land and businesses to protect it, doctors to heal the injured, and construction workers to make repairs.

I don't need to "Turn to God".
You'll also avoid taking advantage of charitable works by churches, like housing, food and such, when/if disaster strikes, right? :D

tbm
2005-Nov-11, 12:47 AM
I have no problems with ID or Creationism or whatever it may be labeled next being taught in public schools. BUT it shouldn't be taught as science. It belongs in a humanities, philosophy, religion, home ec., or something OTHER than science.

Regards, tbm

Faultline
2005-Nov-11, 01:37 AM
I have no problems with ID or Creationism or whatever it may be labeled next being taught in public schools. BUT it shouldn't be taught as science. It belongs in a humanities, philosophy, religion, home ec., or something OTHER than science.

Regards, tbm

I quote myself.



Sticks, in America, the message doesn't belong in public schools. Our constitution forbids the government from promoting any religion or even promoting it non-denominationally.

We have such a blend of cultures and religions that it would be wrong for tax money, supplied by people of many faiths as well as by many aetheists, to be used to teach any form of spirituality.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-11, 03:55 AM
You'll also avoid taking advantage of charitable works by churches, like housing, food and such, when/if disaster strikes, right?

There are other charitable organizations that are not religiously-enabled. With the absence of a religious church, there would still be people that would want to do good. Those same charitable organizations would arise, under different names.

Crum
2005-Nov-11, 04:47 AM
There are other charitable organizations that are not religiously-enabled. With the absence of a religious church, there would still be people that would want to do good. Those same charitable organizations would arise, under different names.
You have greater faith in the inherent good of humanity than I do. I'm not saying that's a bad thing. I think that if religious moral structure were completely removed, humanity would degenerate in fairly short order. I don't think "Be kind to fellow humans when they are hurting/weak" is an evolutionary trait.

Charlie in Dayton
2005-Nov-11, 05:16 AM
Pat Robertson has just weighed in on the teaching of ID...

The fine folk of Dover PA voted their school board out of office when the old board decided to teach ID in science class. Now that there's a new board in, Robertson has publically declared that the voting out of the old board equals a rejection of God, and that trial/tribulation/plague/pestilence/extreme foot odor are in Dover's future. (Okay, maybe not the last one...)

Robertson's comments are available for examination and critical consideration here. (http://cnn.netscape.cnn.com/news/story.jsp?idq=/ff/story/0002%2F20051110%2F1709725797.htm&sc=rontz&photoid=SGE.DXX10.101105044856.photo00)

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-11, 05:18 AM
You have greater faith in the inherent good of humanity than I do. I'm not saying that's a bad thing. I think that if religious moral structure were completely removed, humanity would degenerate in fairly short order. I don't think "Be kind to fellow humans when they are hurting/weak" is an evolutionary trait.
Sure It Is ...

Altruism:

PROTECT the Herd!!!

:clap:

Crum
2005-Nov-11, 05:23 AM
Sure It Is ...

Altruism:

PROTECT the Herd!!!

:clap:
Can you identify a species of animal other than human that actively cares for and nurses its weak and wounded? I'm asking because I can't think of any off the top of my head; I'm not saying there aren't any.

peter eldergill
2005-Nov-11, 06:07 AM
Crayfish

Do you believe me? Ha! I've no idea

Pete

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-11, 06:13 AM
Can you identify a species of animal other than human that actively cares for and nurses its weak and wounded? I'm asking because I can't think of any off the top of my head; I'm not saying there aren't any.
Most Pack Animals do ...

Wolves, Dogs, Chimpanzees, and Meercats, Are Good Examples!

Most, Herd Animals, Will Even Have Members, Put Themselves, At Risk of Predation, To Protect, Nursing Mothers!!!

:clap:

Crum
2005-Nov-11, 06:21 AM
Ah, nursing mothers. There you certainly have me, and I can't begin to argue. That would be an excellent example of an instinct-based (versus intelligence-based) behavior in many/most animals that directly indicates active preservation of the weak, which leaves my argument in tatters. Still, it does little against my innate cynicism when it comes to mankind's position without its previous influence of religious moral structure. My position in this regard is likely very unscientific. I won't be able to defend it logically.

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-11, 07:24 AM
Ah, nursing mothers. There you certainly have me, and I can't begin to argue. That would be an excellent example of an instinct-based (versus intelligence-based) behavior in many/most animals that directly indicates active preservation of the weak, which leaves my argument in tatters. Still, it does little against my innate cynicism when it comes to mankind's position without its previous influence of religious moral structure. My position in this regard is likely very unscientific. I won't be able to defend it logically.
Your Willingness, To Concede The Point, is Quite Refreshing!!!

I Will Admit, It's an Extreme Case, though ...

But, Most Pack Animals, Go Beyond, Even That!

:think:

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-11, 04:49 PM
You have greater faith in the inherent good of humanity than I do. I'm not saying that's a bad thing. I think that if religious moral structure were completely removed, humanity would degenerate in fairly short order. I don't think "Be kind to fellow humans when they are hurting/weak" is an evolutionary trait.

Then you claim that it's a trait granted by some god?

Of COURSE nurturing was an adapted evolutionary trait! Why do you think that pack members protect their own? Survival of the pack means survival of the species -- and also, increased chances of survival of the individual. Same with Herd animals.

Humans are very social creatures -- we learned to adapt a way of life to protect each other. It's why we have such hatred and dislike for that which we deem as "threats". Sometimes, we go out of the way to kill these "threats", even when they are not a "threat" to us immediately (example: Near extinction of the Wolf in North America... or any other country).

In my belief, we invented religion, religion did not invent us. Without religion, we would still have our Altruism -- and we would still have our selfishness.

Many people do evil things in the name of religion. Many do good things. Religion does not make the "good" or the "Evil" -- humans invented those concepts, and act them out. With or without religion, you will have the same thing.

Crum
2005-Nov-12, 02:09 AM
Then you claim that it's a trait granted by some god?
It's going to be difficult to forumulate my thoughts into words here. I'll do my best. BTW, while I realize that by responding I am opening myself to attack by some members of this forum, I hope that all will read this as it is intended. I have already openly conceded ground when faced with a well-spoken argument, so, if you're going to flame me, please do so respectfully.

I do not claim that altruism is a trait instilled in us by God. In fact, from a religious standpoint, exactly the opposite is stated, that we are inherently evil. This is not a religious debate. I do claim that religious influence has created social concepts and mindsets that have made human societies more inclined toward such behavior. I also openly admit that religious influence has had some severely detrimental effects in the history of humanity.


Of COURSE nurturing was an adapted evolutionary trait! Why do you think that pack members protect their own? Survival of the pack means survival of the species -- and also, increased chances of survival of the individual. Same with Herd animals.

I have not yet been exposed to other instanced of individual protection in pack-societies. I have already gratefully conceded this point in part; I am willing to accept that it is my ignorance that gives me my impressions. If there is a pack of wolves travelling and one is injured and/or sick, will the pack remain with the weakened animal until it dies, then move on? Do gazelles rally about their old and pummel a lion to death through sheer force of numbers when their group is stalked? There may be anecdotal evidence that if you swat a mosquito, the others target you in revenge :D but I am not yet aware of other significant instances of individual preservation being a generally-induced evolutionary trait.


Humans are very social creatures -- we learned to adapt a way of life to protect each other. It's why we have such hatred and dislike for that which we deem as "threats". Sometimes, we go out of the way to kill these "threats", even when they are not a "threat" to us immediately (example: Near extinction of the Wolf in North America... or any other country).

In my belief, we invented religion, religion did not invent us. Without religion, we would still have our Altruism -- and we would still have our selfishness.

Many people do evil things in the name of religion. Many do good things. Religion does not make the "good" or the "Evil" -- humans invented those concepts, and act them out. With or without religion, you will have the same thing.

I don't intend to argue with you on any of these points. My argument was that religious influence in human societies has engendered charitable attitudes that I don't feel we are otherwise naturally inclined towards. You can argue from a purely scientific viewpoint that religious social structure is simply an evolutionary stage, and I couldn't really argue against that, but I don't THINK you can argue well against the fact that religious thought has had a great influence in this area.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-12, 03:31 AM
If there is a pack of wolves travelling and one is injured and/or sick, will the pack remain with the weakened animal until it dies, then move on?

I know quite a bit about wolves. Yes, there have been documented instances where wolves have stayed behind to protect and nurture a crippled wolf. However, the more rugged the terrain and the more scarce the food around, the more viscious the wolves tend to be towards the weak in the pack. While unfortunate, it's also logical.


Do gazelles rally about their old and pummel a lion to death through sheer force of numbers when their group is stalked?

I don't know that much about gazelles, but there is the desire to protect the children in a lot of prey species. However, the majority of prey species run first, and attack when cornered. However, some predators HAVE been killed by prey species turning on them...

But I'm not going further from there, as I'm not really proving any points.


My argument was that religious influence in human societies has engendered charitable attitudes that I don't feel we are otherwise naturally inclined towards

Who do you think came up with religion? Who do you think instituted their ideas of "laws" and "values" into religion? Who do you think transcribed these laws and values into religion? Humans, that's who. Charity has always come from those that want to help those that are down. I am a very charitable person, myself. I will help someone that is down, and I hate it when people suffer.

Yet I'm not religious at all. I'm close to an Atheist, but I'm more of an Agnostic; however, I have no religious values that I hold dear. I hold the value of my fellow man, and I would protect my mother, my family, my friends, and the innocent whenever I could. Yet I have no religion to guide me -- just the law, and my own set of values. Yet, according to you, I should immediately be a selfish person because of my lack of religion.

Huevos Grandes
2005-Nov-12, 05:58 AM
...Yet, according to you, I should immediately be a selfish person because of my lack of religion.

Evil, too. :evil:

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-12, 07:14 AM
Evil, too.

Huh, whaddya know.


...that we are inherently evil.

Sorry, Crum, going to have to disagree with you there. Also, "evil" is a highly subjective concept that changes from person to person, but let me go into it this way...

What we are, personality-wise, seems to be determined by our environment, the subject of our growing environment, what we learn (directly or indirectly), etc. Very little really comes "pre-set". I'm learning quite a bit about how much environment plays a factor in my Sociology class.

Also, how exactly does religion cause charitable organizations? First of all, not only did humans construct the religion in the first place, you also have to factor in the fact that I've seen a lot of "good Christians" or whatever, that own very expensive yachts, and spent almost no money on charity at all. They buy pointless "status symbols".

Alternatively, I've seen Christians that go out of their way to help the poor, in more ways than just throwing money at them, but also investing a lot of time and effort.

I've seen Fred Phelp's website, which is full of hatred, loathing, and calls for destruction and slaughter. However, he's also a Baptist Reverend -- exactly what Martin Luther King was as well, who preached peace and love for his fellow man, no matter the color. A man who called out for equality, and was a complete and utter pacifist (the polar opposite of Fred Phelps).

There are extremes in both directions, and then there are people that fall in-between. However, I don't see any evidence that religion itself is the cause for any of the hatred or the charitable acts. It seems to me that the values came from more than the religion itself -- but also their upbringing, the values instilled in them by their family and company, etc.

(In some extremes -- like with Fred Phelps -- mental disorders are also a possible explanation, as some have postulated...)

Crum
2005-Nov-12, 08:59 AM
Obviously I have hit a nerve. Complete sentences make more sense than selected words. For instance, when I stated that, "we are inherently evil," I was clearly illustrating a contrast between your suggestion/question that God instilled altruistic traits in us and the view held by many if not most of today's religions that we have no such inherent trait. You asked if I thought God gave us such traits and I said no, and illustrated that even from a religious viewpoint that idea is not supported.

I concede that your background in wildlife studies exceeds mine. I won't even ask you to provide references, as I am providing none myself. I made a passing comment to your passing comment and it has somehow exploded.

I'm not sure what to do with the rest of your argument. Even stipulating for the sake of discussion that all semblence of religious thought is simply an evolutionary trait, it does not remove the point I have made, that without the influence of religion, whatever its source, on society, I FEEL that mankind would be less inclined to help our weak and wounded than it is.

I'm glad you're a nice guy without any inkling of religious influence in your life, and I think the self-sufficiency you have expressed is admirable. I'm not here to fire up another war in the thread, and I'll bow out now as this is obviously a very sensitive topic.

Tacitus
2005-Nov-12, 10:27 AM
I have no problems with ID or Creationism or whatever it may be labeled next being taught in public schools. BUT it shouldn't be taught as science. It belongs in a humanities, philosophy, religion, home ec., or something OTHER than science.

Regards, tbm

This is the position taken by the newly elected Dover school board. And it's constitutional so long as including it in a non-science class curriculum doesn't in any way promote it as <i>the</i> "truth" or it is used as a tool to promote Christianity or any other religion.

The only reason it's unacceptable in science class is that it's a deliberate attempt to foist some people's religious beliefs on our children. (IDists can object to that remark all they want, but evidence of the religious motivation of those pushing ID into the schools is legion). Sadly, the fact that it is bad science alone doesn't disqualify it from being acceptable to teach.

I think a lot of religious people in USA tend to forget how successful the Constitution has been in keeping their faith alive in this country. Virtually all of the comparable western nations, none of which has explicit laws about theseparation of church and state, are now far more secular than America (up to 10 times more, in fact).

My nieces go to a state school run by the Church of England in the UK. They attend school assemblies, perform in nativity plays, sing Christmas carols, learn all about Easter, and so on. And yet their non-religious parents don't worry one jot about them being indocrinated or becoming very religious. It's just not likely to happen.

So, be warned, if you win the battle and the barriers against state-sponsored religion are swept away (which is what ID is all about - don't kid yourself otherwise), it won't be too long before the US is heading down the same secular road that Europe has been down.

Rickycardo
2005-Nov-14, 03:45 AM
Do gazelles rally about their old and pummel a lion to death through sheer force of numbers when their group is stalked? There may be anecdotal evidence that if you swat a mosquito, the others target you in revenge but I am not yet aware of other significant instances of individual preservation being a generally-induced evolutionary trait.

I do know that when threatened, musk oxen will form a circle around their young and defend them against attacking wolves. Bears attacking to protect their cubs, fish swimming in schools and animals in herds using numbers to confuse and protect their survival. These are all well documented attributes in the wild. 10,000 years ago I'm certain early man acted in the same ways, long before religon was invented. Survival of the species.
Granted, maybe you can't call these examples altuism in the purest sense, but we are more evolved and I feel it's very plausible that this herd/group/social act could have developed into altruism.
Just my 2 cents worth.

TheBlackCat
2005-Nov-14, 05:16 AM
Don't forget ants, termites, bees, some wasps, and naked mole rats also do such things. I think I may have read somewhere about a colonial shrimp as well, but I do not remember off-hand.

Crum
2005-Nov-14, 11:34 PM
I do know that when threatened, musk oxen will form a circle around their young and defend them against attacking wolves. Bears attacking to protect their cubs, fish swimming in schools and animals in herds using numbers to confuse and protect their survival. These are all well documented attributes in the wild. 10,000 years ago I'm certain early man acted in the same ways, long before religon was invented. Survival of the species.
Granted, maybe you can't call these examples altuism in the purest sense, but we are more evolved and I feel it's very plausible that this herd/group/social act could have developed into altruism.
Just my 2 cents worth.
You're selling yourself short. That was worth AT LEAST three cents, maybe more.

I have already conceded the nursing mother issue, gladly, and that easily extends to herd protection of the young. I concede that point as well. Can anybody link to information about animals rallying to protect their wounded or old? Lonewulf mentioned instances of wolves doing so, but my search has yet to turn up corroborating information. The references I have found only indicate a wolf's preference to attack the old, sick, or wounded, with frequent mention of how the healthy scatter at first sign of attack.

Obviously, I am aware that I am on loose footing in this argument, and I've already given than it could easily be my lack of knowledge that gives rise to my impressions. Still, I'd much prefer to be soundly, and respectfully, corrected on all counts than to have the lingering questions, um, linger :D

Note that the religious side of this subtopic has been taken to private messages; it seems to be working out better that way.

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-14, 11:46 PM
I have already conceded the nursing mother issue, gladly, and that easily extends to herd protection of the young. I concede that point as well. Can anybody link to information about animals rallying to protect their wounded or old? Lonewulf mentioned instances of wolves doing so, but my search has yet to turn up corroborating information. The references I have found only indicate a wolf's preference to attack the old, sick, or wounded, with frequent mention of how the healthy scatter at first sign of attack.


I think, elephants and some species of whales have shown this to a point, protecting weakened/ injured individuals against predators. It's picked my interest and I'm going to go find out if I can, if for nothing else my own knowledge.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-14, 11:58 PM
The thing about wolves is, they're hard to throw a generic idea around. Wolves have many differing personalities from wolf to wolf, and they also act different from situation to situation.

When they fight off enemy predators, such as pumas, they are known to gang up and work together. A puma is far more likely to run from three wolves than one wolf. The answer why is rather obvious.

Their generic actions change from environment to environment. They're more conservative and rather heartless when in a VERY harsh surroundings, like in Alaskan winter, where food is scarce, but far more liberal and accepting in very unharsh surroundings, where game is plentiful and life is easy.

Where game is plentiful, packs get larger. Also, they're more liberal about allowing the beta to also breed instead of just the alpha (possibly also letting other wolves get away with getting some noogie).

The same also applies with protecting the weak/crippled/old. In the harsh winter, they might abandon or just kill off the weak/crippled/old.

If you want corroberating evidence, I can't help you. I saw a few documentaries on wolves, and read up on a few books on wolves that mentioned some archeological findings on old wolf bones, but that's about it. :/ I forget titles and references. Sorry.

Crum
2005-Nov-15, 12:34 AM
Their generic actions change from environment to environment. They're more conservative and rather heartless when in a VERY harsh surroundings, like in Alaskan winter, where food is scarce, but far more liberal and accepting in very unharsh surroundings, where game is plentiful and life is easy.
I'm thinking humans tend to gather together more strongly in times of want; growing less charitable as wealth and comfort increase. Is this just my cynicism?

If you want corroberating evidence, I can't help you. I saw a few documentaries on wolves, and read up on a few books on wolves that mentioned some archeological findings on old wolf bones, but that's about it. :/ I forget titles and references. Sorry.
You have been quite helpful. I may have been unclear on that. You've given me a lead worth following and I am doing so, and asking the remaining members of the forum to assist if they wish.

The point still in contention, though barely, is whether religious influence, whether actually divine in nature or not (irrelevant), has played a significant role in engendering altruism and charitable acts in humanity, or if such traits would simply be a natural social-evolutionary stage even without religious influence. I realize this is off-topic, but it came up in on-topic discussion. It should be clarified quickly if y'all will bear with me a moment longer.

Hugh Jass
2005-Nov-15, 12:55 AM
The point still in contention, though barely, is whether religious influence, whether actually divine in nature or not (irrelevant), has played a significant role in engendering altruism and charitable acts in humanity, or if such traits would simply be a natural social-evolutionary stage even without religious influence. I realize this is off-topic, but it came up in on-topic discussion. It should be clarified quickly if y'all will bear with me a moment longer.

This is the ultimate chicken or egg question. It very quickly degrades to personal experience and personal point of view from past experiences with religion. I must say that the AA, NA folks I know who have turned their lives around through the normal 12 step programs, and in those programs they are required to ďfind JesusĒ (It is actually just suggested that they get a religion or some such, but there is a lot of christian influence in these recovery plans). This is religion doing good where good, it could be argued, would not be if it were not for religion. The problem is when you approach a site like this, with the general science point of view, you run into lots of good people who are if not atheist, then agnostic with no true religious influence. Claiming, right or wrong, that religion is the reason people are good, becomes personally insulting to them. I can see where religion does good, and I can see where religion does bad. The broad generalities of itís influence on the evolution of society and mankind, is like I said the ultimate chicken or egg question.

Crum
2005-Nov-15, 01:03 AM
This is the ultimate chicken or egg question. It very quickly degrades to personal experience and personal point of view from past experiences with religion. I must say that the AA, NA folks I know who have turned their lives around through the normal 12 step programs, and in those programs they are required to ďfind JesusĒ (It is actually just suggested that they get a religion or some such, but there is a lot of christian influence in these recovery plans). This is religion doing good where good, it could be argued, would not be if it were not for religion. The problem is when you approach a site like this, with the general science point of view, you run into lots of good people who are if not atheist, then agnostic with no true religious influence. Claiming, right or wrong, that religion is the reason people are good, becomes personally insulting to them. I can see where religion does good, and I can see where religion does bad. The broad generalities of itís influence on the evolution of society and mankind, is like I said the ultimate chicken or egg question.
I cannot begin to disagree with you. You are correct, and I meant no offense to those who may choose to be insulted by my suggestion. I use the word choose, because I am not declaring truth here, but asking for well phrased opinions such as yours. If the mention alone of religion is sufficient to offend, then say so and I will quietly move on to other threads.

The chicken-and-egg analogy is apt. I was actually hoping to see if somebody did have a viable scientific argument against the position I've chosen. I would welcome such; I am not a member of the ultra-vocal, super-minority group of absolutist Christians this forum is apparently used to. Absence of such an argument does not prove my point, but the presence of one would be valuable.

Cougar
2005-Nov-15, 05:05 AM
The point still in contention, though barely, is whether religious influence, whether actually divine in nature or not (irrelevant), has played a significant role in engendering altruism and charitable acts in humanity, or if such traits would simply be a natural social-evolutionary stage even without religious influence.
I think this is an important question, and I wouldn't apologize for bringing it up. And I think LoneWolf has hit on the most likely answer -- one that Carl Sagan put thusly....

Ethical rules... were not originally invented by some enlightened human lawgiver. They go deep into our evolutionary past. They were with our ancestral line from a time before we were human.Same goes for the social values of civilized sapiens.

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-15, 07:47 AM
I'm thinking humans tend to gather together more strongly in times of want; growing less charitable as wealth and comfort increase. Is this just my cynicism?

You have been quite helpful. I may have been unclear on that. You've given me a lead worth following and I am doing so, and asking the remaining members of the forum to assist if they wish.

The point still in contention, though barely, is whether religious influence, whether actually divine in nature or not (irrelevant), has played a significant role in engendering altruism and charitable acts in humanity, or if such traits would simply be a natural social-evolutionary stage even without religious influence. I realize this is off-topic, but it came up in on-topic discussion. It should be clarified quickly if y'all will bear with me a moment longer.
The Key Is, that Like ANY Social Institution, Religion Serves as a Rather Indescriminate Focuser, of Mankind's Desires ...

As Such, While Capable, of Causing Great Joy, Religion Is Also, Capable of Creating, Unmitigated Horror!!!!

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-15, 08:37 AM
I'm thinking humans tend to gather together more strongly in times of want; growing less charitable as wealth and comfort increase. Is this just my cynicism?

Actually, there is plenty of evidence that shows that in times of disaster, people pull together to help each other out.

The thing is, "active charity" is different than "charitable". For instance, I haven't pulled a homeless man off the street and taken him under my wing, but I do impulsively donate money when I see the need for it. I call it "lazy charity" -- but nothing stops those same people from actually being well-meaning people... they just tend to not SEE the need. If they SAW the need, they're more likely to donate -- why do you think that propaganda involving Ethiopa was showing starving children? Many good-hearted people donated money to them.

However, I disagree with the idea of throwing money at the problem of Ethiopa, for a few reasons (mainly that it won't help), but that's a topic reserved for later.


You have been quite helpful. I may have been unclear on that. You've given me a lead worth following and I am doing so, and asking the remaining members of the forum to assist if they wish.

Well, good, at least.


The point still in contention, though barely, is whether religious influence, whether actually divine in nature or not (irrelevant), has played a significant role in engendering altruism and charitable acts in humanity, or if such traits would simply be a natural social-evolutionary stage even without religious influence. I realize this is off-topic, but it came up in on-topic discussion. It should be clarified quickly if y'all will bear with me a moment longer.

It has played a significant role in "setting up" the charities, so to speak (more like donating lots of money to get nice cathedrals built, but that's an editorial I'll save for later).

There's two parts to this question: Are there people out there that donate and are charitable, while having no religious influence whatsoever? The answer is yes -- this is obvious. I'm one of them. (Well, I WAS Baptised Christian, and I went through First Confession, but they don't count 'cause I was bored throughout the whole thing and didn't really care... it was just something my parents put me through. *Shrugs*). Then, a second part of the first question is: Are people of religion more likely to donate? I stipulate "no".

I've seen many "good Christians" with their fancy yachts and cars. They donate almost none of their money to the poor. Also, I might add, I've had BAD experiences in Holy Cross High School -- a Private Catholic High School. I wasn't liked there at all, and I blame my mom for putting me there, and I blame myself for deciding to go... long story there. I cannot see the kids that school donating to charities at all, even if they don't have to go out of their way to do that.

Then there's the second part of the question: Does this mean that we could've done without religion in the first place?

I stipulate that, as far as morals and values go: Yes. We would have still made morals and values for the benefit of society, and charity and acts of goodwill would still be a major thing -- we would wish to heal the sick, to protect our own. We wouldn't even have to be logical about it -- expending resources to heal a sick man for no other reason than to heal him, even though he would be a burden on society anyways. I don't see how this is impossible to result because of lack of religion.

However, I think it would've been impossible for religion to not exist in the first place. "Who am I? Where am I? Why am I here?" are major questions that seem to come with our Sapience. The last one's a clincher. Then you see lightning, you watch volcanoes erupt, you feel the forces of nature are awe-inspiring and out of your control.

Sooner or later, you'll try to find causes for those events, but not have any way to understand them. So thus, deities are invented.

Sticks
2005-Nov-15, 10:28 AM
A town where religion was banned has been tried in the US

This is an account of the result (http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2629)

Edit to addIt seems that evolution may not be enough for the cohesive social order

Fram
2005-Nov-15, 11:52 AM
A town where religion was banned has been tried in the US

This is an account of the result (http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2629)

Edit to addIt seems that evolution may not be enough for the cohesive social order

Thanks for that balanced and objective review. It's refreshing to see the "Hitler as the ultimate atheist" example again.

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2005-Nov-15, 01:29 PM
Thanks for that balanced and objective review. It's refreshing to see the "Hitler as the ultimate atheist" example again.
Yeah ...

Especially Since, he Was Born, a Roman Catholic!!!

The Number of Times, he Quoted, The Gospel of John, Is Simply CHILLING!!!

Not to Mention, Martin Luther's, Anti-Semetic Writings!!!

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-15, 03:39 PM
Sticks: Just a suggestion -- biased reporting rarely is good to go off of. While you may get the religious people (especially the fundamentalists or the uneducated/unknowledgable in general) to nod and say, "YES! THAT'S RIGHT! The Godless Heathens CANNOT SURVIVE as a town! Godless and good do not go together!", it will not work with an audience like us -- that can think and reason, can spot biaseness at its roots, and can say, "Wait a minute... he gets a lot of his facts wrong on other issues..."

Just a suggestion.

Plus, I will rarely pay credence to an article that sounds more like a sermon than an objective article.

Sticks
2005-Nov-15, 04:31 PM
Plus, I will rarely pay credence to an article that sounds more like a sermon than an objective article.

I have found this (http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~evermore/soltoc.htm) independant link that has some of the items mentioned in the previous link that would verify the first link.

This was just to show that the idea that "morality" is based on survival of the heard instinct, does not always follow when it comes to humans.

This appears to have been a noble experiment to try that out, but it did not succeed.

As regard to Hitler, it is unfortunate that the article mentions this one. I do accept that people will misuse religion for their own warped and twisted view. In fact the Bible records this as well, and there is a New Testament example where somone started a power grab at a local church , even to the point of going up against the apostles.

Just as Dawrin may have been misused, I do accept that religion has not been entirely exempt from missuse.

Fram
2005-Nov-15, 05:05 PM
I have found this (http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~evermore/soltoc.htm) independant link that has some of the items mentioned in the previous link that would verify the first link.


"Verify"? In what way? That the town existed? Quite right. But the loose morals and so on don't really impress me in the link you gave now.
About "The brotherhood", founded in 1882:


"The objects of the Brotherhood shall be to extend the influence of benevolence, charity, kindness, fraternity and friendship as far and as wide as possible. * * * * * * * The members of this society shall visit the sick, bury the dead, care for the helpless, educate and protect the orphans of its members, and shall pursue such a course as is calculated to expand the mind and elevate man mentally, socially and morally, and bring him up to that standard which nature has fitted him to fill."

The society had a ritual and a collection of songs suitable to the work of the society. The writer is informed that the Brotherhood did good work during the years of its existence along social and educational lines.

Similar things are said about the Woman's Guild.
In 1888, serious debates were held about the Presidential elections in a place for free speech and discussion. Soon afterwards it was sold to the methodists.
This does show that the town wasn't an atheist one for very long (some 10 years at most), but this doesn't give the impression that it was a failed experiment in an ethical sense. We do read though that once the churches and saloons came back in, everyone and everything followed, including the KKK. Quite an ethical revival indeed.

Sticks
2005-Nov-15, 06:43 PM
The objectives of the brotherhood and the women's guild were noble, I accept that. But if it was working so well, how come according to this quote

In fact the old FreeThinkers Organization had gone to pieces and the way was open for any cult that might want to come. page 41 (http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~evermore/churches.htm)

and the experiment ends after 10 years?

If altruism is a pure survival of the spieces trick, devised by natural selection, as it seems in other annimals, how come in humans it leads to some form of theism.

Let's take Christianity out of this and go right back to the early civilisations, they all seemed to have taken up a form of theism to make sense of their world, Dr Allen Chapman discusses this in his book "Gods in the Sky". It seems to be something inate in the human annimal.

For some reason, people invent religion as they seek meaning.

Why would evolution give us this, when it does not happen in the excellent examples you have given of annimals who look after their young.

BTW one other question no one has answered her, is where is the poster who started this thread I suspect the old "light the blue touch paper and step back" trick

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-15, 06:53 PM
Simple: Sapience causes us to ask "Why are we here?" No other animal asks that. I could come up with a dozen reasons for religion to have been developed. I can ALSO come up with a dozen reasons to explain how a group can be charitable and not be religious.

It doesn't even have to do with morality, or generosity, or anything else.

Also: Ten years is a long time for an organization to be up and running; ESPECIALLY when you're surrounded by a majority of population (as in, population outside of the town), that are heavy into a viewpoint that disagrees with your own (I.E., that things should be run according to religion).

Sticks, you're grasping at straws, and it's rather obvious.

Sticks
2005-Nov-15, 07:21 PM
Simple: Sapience causes us to ask "Why are we here?" No other animal asks that.

But therein lies the rub

Only Humans seem to have sapience (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sapience).

As sapience is such a useful commodity, why has only one spiecies developed it?

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-15, 07:33 PM
So... that's the crux of your stance against evolution? "Only humans developed it, thus it must be god-granted"?

TheBlackCat
2005-Nov-15, 07:35 PM
But therein lies the rub

Only Humans seem to have sapience (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sapience).

As sapience is such a useful commodity, why has only one spiecies developed it?
Maybe because it isn't that useful of a commodity. In nature, by far the most successful species are the ones that are stupid, breed fast, breed a lot, eat anything, and adapt quickly. Except for humans, intelligent species do not tend to fare that well. They are uncommon, and those that exist tend to hold a few relatively limited ecological niches, generally in restricted areas. The only intelligent creature that can come close to humans' success is the Bottlenose Dolphin. Other species like chimps, gorillas, and african grey parrots are relitevely unsuccessful compared to far stupider relatives. The most successful mammals are low on the intelligence scale ralative to mammals. The most successful birds seem to only be of roughly mean or low intelligence relative to other birds. The most intelligent cephalopods, octopi, or not anywhere near as common as the stupider one like barnacles, oysters, clams, muscles, and such. And the most successful animals on the planet, arthropods, are pretty low on the animal intelligence scale. I think nature shows that until a life-form reaches a point like human intelligence, high intelligence tends to be more of a hinderance than a help. It is seems obvious that is it very rare for the specific set of circumstances could arise that would allow a species to develop sapience.


It has yet to be proven that intelligence has any survival value.

Sticks
2005-Nov-15, 07:38 PM
But humans have invented the digital watch ;-)

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-15, 07:40 PM
But humans have invented the digital watch ;-)

...And?

Hamlet
2005-Nov-15, 07:53 PM
But humans have invented the digital watch ;-)



And soon I will have understanding of videocassette recorders and car telephones. And when I have understanding of them, I shall have understanding of computers. And when I have understanding of computers, I shall be the Supreme Being! God isn't interested in technology. He knows nothing of the potential of the microchip or the silicon revolution. Look how he spends his time: forty-three species of parrots! Nipples for men!


Do I have the right reference (http://home.earthlink.net/~ajdlro/bandits.html)?

Sticks
2005-Nov-15, 07:58 PM
Sorry about that, I was gripped by an insatable urge to do a homage to "Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy"

For an unsuccessful species, we are the only one to leave our planet and land several of our kind on another world and return them safely to the earth.

We are the one species that has the capability of saving all spieces should the Earth be threatened by an asteroid.

my actual question about sapience is why would evolution only give it to one spieces. If it is not such a useful commodditiy how come humans became effectively the top predator.