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Thread: Evolution is bad science

  1. #1 Evolution is bad science 
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    http://www.chick.com/bc/1987/evolution.asp


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    Forum Sophomore Elbethil's Avatar
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    Am I alone in viewing the evolution/creation issue as being discussed to death?


    "In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move." -- Douglas Adams
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    Jack Chick puts out some of the most unintentionally hilarious stuff around. His tracts are like Reefer Madness in the form of a little comic book.
    To argue with a man who has renounced his reason is like giving medicine to the dead.
    -- Thomas Paine, The Crisis
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    http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/1051/1051_01.asp

    If you think this guy has any credibility ghost, you have very serious problems.
    To argue with a man who has renounced his reason is like giving medicine to the dead.
    -- Thomas Paine, The Crisis
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    Shut up. You insult our intelligence.
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    Why can't people just accept both theories and form one? The Bible says that God created everything in 6 days. How long was each of those days? 24 hours? 1 week? 100 million years? 1 billion years?
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    The very fact that days are used as the measure of time proves that God didn't do it as reported.
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    Christ on a stick. This is crap. Funny, but crap.
    Huh?
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    I've been blinded by Satan, and now I'm going to hell since I feel it is almost certain that life on Earth evolved from less complex forms over many millennia!

    George Carlin on religion


    When it comes to bullshit, big-time, major league bullshit, you have to stand in awe of the all-time champion of false promises and exaggerated claims, religion. No contest. No contest. Religion. Religion easily has the greatest bullshit story ever told. Think about it. Religion has actually convinced people that there's an invisible man living in the sky who watches everything you do, every minute of every day. And the invisible man has a special list of ten things he does not want you to do. And if you do any of these ten things, he has a special place, full of fire and smoke and burning and torture and anguish, where he will send you to live and suffer and burn and choke and scream and cry forever and ever 'til the end of time!

    But He loves you. He loves you, and He needs money! He always needs money! He's all-powerful, all-perfect, all-knowing, and all-wise, somehow just can't handle money! Religion takes in billions of dollars, they pay no taxes, and they always need a little more. Now, you talk about a good bullshit story. Holy Shit!
    http://www.objectivethought.com/atheism/carlin.html
    To argue with a man who has renounced his reason is like giving medicine to the dead.
    -- Thomas Paine, The Crisis
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    Quote Originally Posted by Also Known As
    [img]
    If you think this guy has any credibility ghost, you have very serious problems.
    Try this one; he makes fun of evolution in this one:
    contains hoaxes like piltdown man, Nebraska man, moon dust depth shows a younger earth, etc.

    http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/0055/0055_01.asp
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  12. #11  
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    Those pesky aliens are the ones that started the bible. They should have had a prime directive
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    Great cranks have a way of finding each other. Chick bases many of his assertions on the work of "Dr." Kent Hovind.

    Let's take a look at a critique of "Dr." Hovind's thesis:

    CHAPTER 1 (38 pages)

    The first chapter demonstrates Hovind's abysmal grasp of the nature and scope of science and his inability to write at the postgraduate level. Hovind begins with a non-standard definition of evolution - that with time, things left to themselves can improve - and a ramble about thermodynamics. For the first time evolution is described as a religion (hang on to your hats). He then proceeds to a long pair of inaccurate definitions of microevolution and macroevolution. He finishes this section with a second misstatement about evolution by pinning the idea of "evolution = progress" on the evolutionists.

    Hovind then begins the actual purported history of evolution, starting with Satan, whom he believes fell from heaven about 100 years after the creation of Adam and Eve. It is alleged that the snake brought the theory of evolution to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. No Bible verses are cited to substantiate this assertion. Then there are nearly three pages of Biblical quotations dealing with pride and how God hates it. Pride and evolution are conjoined in Hovind's mind because evolution allegedly teaches that man is its ultimate product. Evolution proceeded through Cain, Hovind goes on, and continued to be propagated after the Flood (2400 BC), like a virus. Pride caused Ham to laugh at the naked Noah, so Ham's son, Canaan, was cursed! The virus traveled from Cush through Nimrod to the Tower of Babel (which Hovind says was built in 1900 BC). After the fall of Babel, the people dispersed all over the world and the religion of evolution (bing) went with them.

    Ancient Greek civilization, from Thales to Alexander, takes it on the chin next, with a regurgitation of the Henry Morris-type biographies that I saw when I visited the Institute for Creation Research. Since Hovind's only reference in this chapter is a passing mention of Henry Morris' The Long War Against God, I suspect that most of this material is rehashed from that book.

    Having trashed Western civilization, Hovind gives thumbnail sketches of Eastern religions (Hinduism, Confucianism, Zoroasterism, Buddhism, and Taoism), but has very little to say about how they relate to the subject of this chapter until the big whammy - Hovind alleges that communist takeovers of these countries were very simple because their religions did not place much importance on God. (Kinda makes you wonder how they did so well as civilizations until communist takeovers within the last 50-100 years. Evolution surely was with them since 1900 BC; see Hovind's date for the Tower of Babel). According to Hovind, evolution also made an easy entry into these cultures, as it did not challenge the existing religions. It is interesting that there is no mention of evolution in Chinese or Indian literature, and that it took a couple of mid-nineteenth century Europeans to formulate the theory of evolution!

    After a page of digression about how to reach people who have been brainwashed by evolution, Hovind takes on the early Christians. Clement tried to make God a pantheist God; the Alexandrians rewrote parts of the Bible; Origen taught Genesis as a myth; Augustine was a theistic evolutionist. Islam is squeezed in here also, and it is alleged that this religion accepts evolution. Tell that one to your favorite Islamic fundamentalist! No supporting evidence or references are given for any of these assertions.
    More laughable crap: http://home.austarnet.com.au/stear/b...vind_thesishtm

    Edit: She really has a bang up finish.
    Kent Hovind says (in his statement above) that he doesn't care whether he is addressed as "Mr." or "hey you" by the scoffers. In fact, his Ph.D. is very precious to him or he would not be listed as "Dr. Kent Hovind" in the Pensacola, FL, phone book (it is very unusual for a person with a Ph.D., even a real one, to do this). One has only to look at his itinerary to substantiate my claim that being called "Doctor" is very important to him.

    It is certainly possible for a person to acquire expertise in a scientific field by studying that topic independently. However, such a person does not claim to have an advanced degree in the field. There is NO EVIDENCE that Kent Hovind has more than a college sophomore level of course work in ANY science. There is NO EVIDENCE from his thesis that he is widely-read in the areas of evolution, astronomy, geology, paleontology or even the history of science beyond what is written in a few young-Earth creationist books. There is ABUNDANT EVIDENCE that the requirements for a Ph.D. degree from Patriot University fall far below those of typical secular or religious institutions.

    Ask yourself whether you would visit a medical doctor, an auto mechanic, a plumber, or an investment counsellor with similar dubious credentials. If so, then Hovind is your science guy! Or see him for what he is, the snake-oil salesman, peddling salvation and pseudo science in the late 20th century and even unto the 21st century.
    To argue with a man who has renounced his reason is like giving medicine to the dead.
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    Since the arguments presented by Chick, Hovind, Gish, et al are grounded in pseudoscience, this seemed the proper forum for this thread to reside.

    It certainly had no place in biology.

    At any rate, I think I covered another pseudoscientist of "creation science" in this post - "Dr." William Dembski. There, I point out the tendency of creationist pseudoscientists to data-mine science writings looking for snippets they can take out of context to show how "scientists doubt evolution" etc.

    The criticisms of evolution have yet to show any solid science and rely nearly totally on pseudoscience to make their case. The pretense of science.
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    Skinwalker, you show admirable restraint by moving this thread to psuedoscience rather than the trash can.

    Ghost, please show some respect for your fellow forum members, and cite sources for your disbelief of evolutionary theory that are not insane.
    To argue with a man who has renounced his reason is like giving medicine to the dead.
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    Christians go on about evolution been a lie or not provable I'v read articals that say evolution should not be taught in schools becuse its not science but just a theory because we can not show evidence for it or we cannot see it happening than if this is true why is it ok to teach religion thats not poveable thats just blind faith whats more likley what creatures evole or that theres is some builder.
    Me im sticking with evolution religion is nothing more than a way to control the weak minded
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  17. #16  
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost7584

    Try this one; he makes fun of evolution in this one:
    contains hoaxes like piltdown man, Nebraska man, moon dust depth shows a younger earth, etc.

    http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/0055/0055_01.asp
    The moon dust argument is an outright lie.
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    That Chick cartoon raises some fascinating issues, doesn't anybody else think?

    Of course it is the primary misunderstanding of science by anti-evolutionists that only that which can be directly seen and observed is science.

    1. Cosmic Evolution - Big Bang makes hydrogen
    2. Chemical Evolution - higher elements evolve
    3. Evolution of stars and planets from gas.
    4. Organic Evolution - life from rocks
    5. Macro-evolution - changes between kinds of plants and animals
    6. Micro-evolution - changes within kinds.


    Creationist Student: Only the last one has been observed and can be called science. The first five are believed by faith.
    Rest of class: He's got a point there!
    A good point. (Of course he had to spoil it by putting one of the "ludicrous" claims of evolutionists which of course evolutionists don't make at all. "Life from rocks" sounds ridiculous, but "life from organic soup" sounds plausible.)

    However, let's look at it in a little more detail.

    5. Evolution is of course a theory that derived from the evidence of the fossils. People think "dinosaurs" when they think of fossils, but the vast bulk of fossils are shelled sea creatures. Those shells are there, they lie in their various strata, and the derivations of each new species' characteristics clearly derive from species found in lower strata. Darwin himself could find problems with a theory of evolution when it seemed that characteristics from two animals are "blended" in their children. But the theory was saved when Mendel showed that heredity is, despite appearances, particulate and digital. In other words a specific genetic trait is either inherited or not inherited. In 1953 the structure of DNA was finally solved, and surprise surprise it confirmed evolution rather than denied it.

    4. Clearly life has to have come from non-life. The fundamental misunderstanding made by Creationists is to assume that the theory of evolution was promulgated by atheists solely to justify their atheism. This is not the case. Life came from something, then .... so why not say that God created the first life and then evolution took over? Because to draw a line and say "God did it" is antithetical to investigation. We don't know whether we can discover a naturalistic origin to all life on Earth, but if we postulate God, all investigation stops there. At the moment all we have are theories. Maybe we can one day formulate a theory that stands up above all the others (that shows specifically how DNA came about for instance) - and then we would have some knowledge which we might one day be able to make use of. You can't make use of the datum "God did it". Maybe only God can do it. But making that an article of faith is abandoning the purpose of any kind of scientific exploration.

    3. The evolution of stars and planets from gas is also quite far from fantasy. First of all you postulate gas molecules just floating in space. We have the theory of gravity, so obviously that gas is going to come together. The more mass accumulates the more gravity there is. After a while the temperature and pressure in the centre enormous. Now we turn to quantum physics to determine what goes on then. Mathematical models, all based rigorously upon experimental evidence help us determine at what temperature and pressure ignition occurs. Then we have the results of fusion reactions, what elements that is likely to produce, and we can deduce the life cycle of a star prior to and beyond it's store of hydrogen fuel. Then we look in the sky and we can see stars at all different stages, which confirm what we deduced using quantum laws and mathematics.

    2. Chemical evolution. Again, quantum physics gives us the mechanism by which the elements were first generated. Most of the 90-odd stable elements are formed within stars. Why postulate element creation in the first place? Because the evidence of what we see indicates a beginning to the Universe.

    1. The Big Bang. This again is not based upon some supposed anti-theism, but is derived from evidence. Evidence first of all of the expansion of space, and then secondly the microwave background radiation which is the last echo of the original event. For much of the 20th Century the most widely attested theory was that the Universe had always existed. Fred Hoyle promulgated the Steady State theory, and one reason he vilified the Single Point Creation of Spacetime theory, which he mockingly called the Big Bang, was because it let God back in!
    "It is comparatively easy to make clever guesses; indeed there are theorems, like 'Goldbach's Theorem' which have never been proved and which any fool could have guessed." G.H. Hardy, Fourier Series, 1943
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    Interestingly the very first thing that is claimed is that you can be jailed for mentioning the Bible within schools. One thing I do find quite disturbing in the whole debate, particularly from America, is when the pro-evolutionists start on the whole "separation of Church and State" doctrine. I'm not aware of all the decisions that have been based upon this, but it is absolutely invidious to have barred all mention of religion within public schools, and I find that no less anti-educational than the forcing of ID in science classes. Chick even defends the fact that you are not subject to arrest for teaching Creation or the Bible, when I rather thought he might inveigle (correctly in my view) against a system that did proscribe any area of human knowledge. What disturbs me is that it's too easy to dismiss this as a straw man (because it isn't illegal, after all), but I get the sense that many exponents of the anti-Creationist lobby do in fact behave in this way - as if even talk of religion and religious subjects are banned from schools.

    This came up in a Boston Legal episode, where our heroes actually had to defend the wrong point of view. And the pro-Evolution side constantly said that Creation should not be taught because of "separation of Church and State." The separation is to ensure that democratically arrived at laws are not struck down on spurious religious grounds, and to ensure that (unlike in England) no part of the Legislature is formed solely by membership of an established Church. (In the United Kingdom, the Bishops of the Church of England sit in the House of Lords - an already unelected body that reviews legislation passed by the democratically elected Commons. But in point of fact they don't affect non-Church related legislation, by convention.) It should not be seen as a reason to prohibit the teaching of religion in state schools, which is what is implied.

    Pardon me if any or all of this is due to my British ignorance.
    "It is comparatively easy to make clever guesses; indeed there are theorems, like 'Goldbach's Theorem' which have never been proved and which any fool could have guessed." G.H. Hardy, Fourier Series, 1943
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  20. #19  
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    Another good point made is the supposed circular reasoning regarding the age of layers of rock and the fossils they contain. What even many evolutionists don't seem to be aware of is that the age of layers of rock, even without radiometric dating, is at least partly based on studies which showed how long it took for sediments to lay down. From that we have well-attested age for rocks about which there is no doubt - ie it's relatively undisturbed - from which we can deduce the age of the fossils within. All the fossils of a particular type (I'm talking small fossils of course) will be found in a particular layer. Two different areas can be used to back each other up. Then we find areas where the age is not so well-attested (because there has been a great deal of upheaval, so we don't have all the recent layers). We then examine the fossils which we have previously dated, and that gives us the age of the rock.

    So it's not entirely circular. We use other methods to determine the age of undisturbed strata, read off the fossils to get their ages, then see the ages in disturbed strata to get the age of that.

    In the next picture the Creationist talks about the large objects which seem to cover many strata - well, this is obvious, isn't it? A tree is one large object which may have fallen down and then slippage and subsidence causes it to drop in the earth across several layers, maybe because of earthquake or other catastrophic event. This is exactly what I would expect to see! What the Creationist should expect to see is no clear evidence that a particular fossil always appears in a particular layer, and that more developed fossils should appear only in younger layers. But that is what we do find, so that also bolsters the evolution theory. (This is one area where you can deny that evolution is not falsifiable. It is - any number of things would not be the case if evolution was false, and the order in which they appear in the rocks is certainly one of them.)

    Then there's this thing about the vestigial tail bone, and the young man comes back with the unanswerable riposte that "nine muscles attach to the tail bone. It's not vestigial." Nine muscles, huh, and yet I seemingly cannot wag my tail! Not really sure what Chick was trying to say there - if it's not vestigial, then it's still a working tail and there's one more resemblance between humans and monkeys!

    Creationist: What is the binding force of the atom?
    Professor: It's gluons.
    Creationist: Wrong, sir! Gluons are a made-up dream. No-one has seen them or even measured them. They just don't exist! It's a desperate theory to explain away truth.

    So what's wrong with this? Have gluons been detected? No they haven't. Of course, if the professor wasn't something of a straw man himself, but an actually scientifically educated person qualified to actually teach his subject, perhaps he would have known better than to say "gluons". I'm not certain I believe in gluons myself, but I damn well believe in the well-tested, measured and totally demonstrable strong nuclear force. That force is there holding atoms together just as much as we are held down onto the earth by gravity. What causes gravity? Well, "gravitons" is the name given to the theoretical exchange particles of the gravity force, just as gluons is the name for the strong nuclear exchange particles. But just because I'm not certain about the graviton theory (since gravitons themselves have not been detected) does not mean that it therefore means that I'm being held to my desk chair by Jesus himself.
    "It is comparatively easy to make clever guesses; indeed there are theorems, like 'Goldbach's Theorem' which have never been proved and which any fool could have guessed." G.H. Hardy, Fourier Series, 1943
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    "Wrong, sir! Gluons are a made-up dream. No-one has seen them or even measured them"

    How many Creationist have seen god or measured him for that matter but it's still ok to believe in him
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    Silas, you said:
    but it is absolutely invidious [?] to have barred all mention of religion within public schools, and I find that no less anti-educational than the forcing of ID in science classes.
    It would be a bad thing if all mention of religion were barred from public schools (US), but this is not the case. In a class on (comparative) religion or history, it is entirely appropriate. Teaching about religion is not the same as preaching a particular religion. The thing that should be prohibited is teaching a religious theory (ID) in a science class.
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    Quote Originally Posted by spidergoat
    Silas, you said:
    but it is absolutely invidious [?] to have barred all mention of religion within public schools, and I find that no less anti-educational than the forcing of ID in science classes.
    It would be a bad thing if all mention of religion were barred from public schools (US), but this is not the case. In a class on (comparative) religion or history, it is entirely appropriate. Teaching about religion is not the same as preaching a particular religion. The thing that should be prohibited is teaching a religious theory (ID) in a science class.
    That is as I thought and hoped. But I have seen a number of dramatisations of the kind generally based upon real-life cases (one in The West Wing and one in Boston Legal) in which the doctrine of separation was promulgated in terms of having not one jot of religion in public schools, even within private groups within the school. I'm not saying they don't teach religion in schools, just that sometimes the anti-Creationists appear to promote the idea that it shouldn't be taught. I'm still not 100% clear on where the Supreme Court gets off telling teachers what to teach, whether it is Evolution or Creationism.
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    I think it's clear that what is bad science is the so-called "intelligent" design hypothesis. Evolution isn't a science unto itself, but rather a convergence of the various disciplines of science. All data in each discipline & sub-discipline: paleontology, geology, chemistry, biology, botany, anthropology, astronomy, etc.; point to the same conclusion or point of convergence: that life on this planet is the result of gradual progression of diversity and complexity over the course of billions of years.

    The "intelligent" design hypothesis is but a weak attempt to maintain the well-debunked assumption of creation. It implies a "creator."

    I think it would be ironic if a school district would suddenly embrace the "theory", but call it "extraterrestrial" design rather than "intelligent" design. Then, you would have all the fundamentalist nutters simultaneously shout, "NO! We meant that the designer was god! Our god!"

    At any rate, the "intelligent" design hypothesis appears to lack true intelligence and is motivated by religious superstition.

    I challenge ghost to pick one or more of Jack Chick's points and support it(them) here in discussion.
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    ...the doctrine of separation was promulgated in terms of having not one jot of religion in public schools, even within private groups within the school.
    That is a common misconception, but I think it is creationists that promote this idea- that separation of church and state means no mention of any religion at all in public school. They usually don't do very well with subtlety, and prefer an all-or-nothing, us-or-them mentality.
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    why can't it be accepted the god created the laws that rule and evolve the universe and that the universe obeys them. He may not of started the big bang deliberately his actual presence was the energy necessary to kick start it. A pope was once quoted as saying "true science discovers god behind every door." That can't be all bad
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    Quote Originally Posted by phephiphophum
    why can't it be accepted the god created the laws that rule and evolve the universe
    Which god and why?
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    Quote Originally Posted by phephiphophum
    why can't it be accepted the god created the laws that rule and evolve the universe and that the universe obeys them.
    How are these laws enforced? Does a photon look up how it's supposed to behave in a statute book? Do photons ever break the law?

    Simple truth is that the phrase 'The laws of physics' is misleading. It's a rather Victorian attitude. There are no laws. Matter and energy just do what they do, and the supposed 'laws' are merely descriptions of their observed behaviour, not restrictions on their behaviour.

    But either way, it doesn't answer the question, 'where did god come from'. If we can accept that god just came into being for no good reason, we can accept the same for the Universe, and cut out the middle man.
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    If evolution is not true take a look at this site look at the creature is it just me or is that a transition stage from four legged reptile to two legged bird
    by the way not shore if this site is for real or a joke I really hope is a joke site http://www.landoverbaptist.org/news0...yingdinos.html
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    landoverbaptist.org is a spoof Evangelical site, yes.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silas
    landoverbaptist.org is a spoof Evangelical site, yes.
    Not to mention one of the funnier sites on the WWW.

    Amazing how some people fail to recognise it as a spoof.
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    Ah, the usual strawmen, flawed science, and lies. It is rather telling that creationists must resort to such measures in order to support their ideas.
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    Well, let me just ask a simple question.

    If ID or creationist could come up with solid scientific evidences of creation or design, do you think the authority or people or scientists will willingly accept it in the science syllabus? (Note: I am not sure how much they have progress scientifically).

    Are the controversies (or issues if you want to call them) mentioned in the comic strip actually taught in schools? If not, I would think they should.

    Now that Harvard is going into research about evolution and origins. Maybe they should setup a similar research for ID or creationism to be fair. And to be even fairer, the research group should contain people from both sides as a check. I don't know how the group is actually structure. Just speaking from my own opinions. They might have already done that. If that is so, that's fine.
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    This article looks pretty scientific (to me at least). Nothing out of blind faith here. Would love to hear how the evolutionists rebukes these.

    http://www.chick.com/reading/books/174/evolvex.asp
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  35. #34  
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    It's easily refuted by simply noting the domain name in the link. That the article "looks scientific" to you says more about you than the article.
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    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    This article looks pretty scientific (to me at least). Nothing out of blind faith here. Would love to hear how the evolutionists rebukes these.
    I do not know you, so I do not know if you are joking or if you are serious. To say that it looks scientific to you makes it appear as though you have a very poor understanding of science, such that your statement has no value at all. You ask for people to refute it, but that is a joke. There is no requirement that people refute this rubbish, as there is no reason that anyone with any scientific background would consider it to be serious. If you really think that it might contain some scientific value, I recommend that you begin with a first grade course in science, and work your way up from there. If you do not understand why this is rubbish, then how could you possibly understand a refutation of this rubbish?
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    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    This article looks pretty scientific (to me at least). Nothing out of blind faith here. Would love to hear how the evolutionists rebukes these.

    http://www.chick.com/reading/books/174/evolvex.asp
    One should not trust Jack Chick in science matters, or anything, for that matter. It looks scientific, and that's the idea. Have you read his tracts designed to convert people to accept Jesus as their lord and saviour? That is an indication as to where he stands when it comes to reality.

    The magnetic field is known to have fluctuated, and will continue to do so. It's not safe to say it's been decaying exponentially since Earth was formed.

    The age of the Mississippi river delta - whatever it may be - has nothing to do with the age of the Earth. Especially since there are older things in the world...

    I'm not a geologist, but here are some pages regarding oil and natural gas:
    http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CD/CD230.html
    http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CD/CD231.html
    http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CD/CD232.html

    The rotation of the Earth slowing down at a rate of 0.005 seconds, according to this talk.origins page. Not enough to stop the rotation of the Earth.


    I would recommend the list of creationist claims over at talk.origins:
    http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/list.html
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    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Well, let me just ask a simple question.

    If ID or creationist could come up with solid scientific evidences of creation or design, do you think the authority or people or scientists will willingly accept it in the science syllabus? (Note: I am not sure how much they have progress scientifically).
    Why shouldn't they? I am curious what kind of evidence that would be, though.

    Are the controversies (or issues if you want to call them) mentioned in the comic strip actually taught in schools? If not, I would think they should.
    There is no such controversy! I will take a look at the Big Daddy comic, and see exactly how reliable it is:

    1. The student tries first to appeal to the Bible.

    Big mistake, since the Bible is not a scientific text to begin with, and the Genesis stories are not to be trusted anyway.

    2. "Six concepts of evolution:"

    - Cosmic evolution (Big Bang makes hydrogen)
    - Chemical evolution (Higher elements evolve)
    - Evolution of stars and planets from gas
    - Organic evolution (Life from rocks)
    - Macro-evolution (Changes between kinds of plants and animals)
    - Micro-evolution (Changes within kinds)

    I'm not sure exactly where he got these from. We're talking about Darwinian evolution, are we not? In that case we should disregard the first four and focus on the two that remains.

    First of all I don't know that "kind" is the word to be used. I am sure they mean something like "species". The student then goes on to say that only micro-evolution has ever been observed directly, the rest are believed by faith. I am not sure why a religious person would have any problems with faith, but there you have it. Anyway, the terms macro-evolution and micro-evolution are usually used by creationists and fundamentalists, who need to make clear the difference between the two.

    They are wrong, however. There is evolution, and that's about it. What is macro-evolution, if not micro-evolution over a really long period of time? Also, speciation has been observed directly.

    3. Polystrate fossils.

    There are actually no problems with such fossils, since sediment sometimes is deposited very quickly.

    4. Earnst Haeckel's faked drawings of embryos.

    Those fake pictures were no longer used when they were found to be fake. It's not even an issue, so why bring it up as if it were?

    5. There are no vestigial organs.

    There are. That doesn't mean they are necessarily useless. In some cases, not always.

    6. Gluons are a fabrication, and Jesus holds the atomic nucleus together.

    Wow. Just... wow.


    Now that Harvard is going into research about evolution and origins. Maybe they should setup a similar research for ID or creationism to be fair.
    Why? ID is not a science, it's an empty hypothesis based on nothing, it explains nothing, predicts nothing and there's no definitions of anything. "This is complex, therefore it was designed." Yeah, that's really good...

    And why creationism? What creationist myth should they perform research in, really? The Norse creation myth?

    And science is not like religion. It doesn't have any precious dogma that must be defended in non-scientific ways. Nature is observed, an hypothesis is set up, predicitons are made, and then the hypothesis is tested. Science doesn't care what dogma it contradicts.

    And to be even fairer, the research group should contain people from both sides as a check. I don't know how the group is actually structure. Just speaking from my own opinions. They might have already done that. If that is so, that's fine.
    I am sure there are religious scientists, many who realise that the theory of biological evolution is a remarkably successful theory.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hermes
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    This article looks pretty scientific (to me at least). Nothing out of blind faith here. Would love to hear how the evolutionists rebukes these.
    I do not know you, so I do not know if you are joking or if you are serious. To say that it looks scientific to you makes it appear as though you have a very poor understanding of science, such that your statement has no value at all. You ask for people to refute it, but that is a joke. There is no requirement that people refute this rubbish, as there is no reason that anyone with any scientific background would consider it to be serious. If you really think that it might contain some scientific value, I recommend that you begin with a first grade course in science, and work your way up from there. If you do not understand why this is rubbish, then how could you possibly understand a refutation of this rubbish?
    Well, I can be sure I am not joking when I said that. I said "pretty scientific" because I am not truly a scientist. I am an IT Engineer but have interest in astronomy and cosmology. I have also been reading things about physics stuff every now and then. Frankly saying, I believe in God and thus is more of a pro-ID person but I try to see and discuss things in a scientific and objective manner.

    I do not say I agree totally with all issues brought up by creationism or ID. That's why I felt that it will be best if they could come up with convincing scientific evidences, theories, peer-reviewed papers, etc to support their arguments instead of using the law. And that's why I felt they should have their own research group. It is much fairer.

    As for Chick's articles, I am not sure why they used "Chick". It does give a non-serious impression. Maybe it's their way to catch attention. Regarding their comic strip, articles and books, I felt that they have at least tried to put forth their arguments with supporting hypotheses and evidences. They did not simply said that it is too complex and thus God did it and period. As for the idea about asking readers to believe in Jesus, I don't see what's wrong with that?
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    http://www.chick.com/information/authors/chick.asp

    Ok. There is a person called Jack Chick. So, there isn't anything wrong with www.chick.com. They didn't feel ashamed or embarassed with the word "chick". It is not vulgarities or whatever anyway.
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    Take a look at these books. Had only read the first portion about protein. Can't say I understand all. But again, I felt that they had presented the stuff well. They supported their arguments with scientific explanations, cross references from various sources including neutral sources, etc.

    http://www.chick.com/catalog/books/0123.asp
    http://www.chick.com/catalog/books/1016.asp

    Maybe they should create a forum in their website to allow people to post their questions, doubts, comments, feedback, skeptism, whatever and have them answered directly by them. That would be good.
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    You need to go back to the beginning of this thread. My first post said "Jack Chick puts out some of the most unintentionally hilarious stuff around. His tracts are like Reefer Madness in the form of a little comic book."

    Jack Chick is hopelessly insane.
    To argue with a man who has renounced his reason is like giving medicine to the dead.
    -- Thomas Paine, The Crisis
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    I've already shown why that evolution comic is flawed, and why creationism is not a scientific field. I'm not sure what more I can do. If you think that Jack Chick's publications look scientific... whatever. But they're not. I doubt you even bothered to read my two previous comments.
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    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    As for the idea about asking readers to believe in Jesus, I don't see what's wrong with that?
    There is nothing wrong with this, in the proper place. A scientific discussion, for example, is hardly the proper place.

    Anyone with a little intelligence can create an argument that is completely full of bull such that listeners who are not sophisticated in the field will have no ability to refute it. That does not make it a serious argument to those who are not lacking such sophistication in the field. The article that you cited was rubbish, and the only people who might accept it are those who have no sophistication in science but readily accept an authoritative sounding argument, lacking the ability to recognize that it is rubbish.
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    Starnamer, I rather think you are the unwitting victim of collateral damage. The forum members who have attacked Chick have done so from a reasonable knowledge of his arguments and the fallacies they contain. There is a strong strain of intellectual dishonesty within these arguments (or, as AlsoKnownAs suggested Chick is simply insane). The frustration at seeing these weak, yet often repeated arguments frequently spills over into veiled sarcasm directed at the current messenger (in this case you): hence suggestions that you "lack sophistication in the sciences" or, "If you do not understand why this is rubbish, then how could you possibly understand a refutation of this rubbish?" May I applaud your good sense in not reacting to these attacks on your person, but always returning to the facts as you see them.

    As noted above, what enrages (or, in some cases amuses) many of us about such claims is the intellectual dishonesty. Please consider this brief examination of a portion of one of your latest links. (
    http://www.chick.com/catalog/books/0123.asp)

    The second paragraph of that link reads:
    "Evolutionists claim that simple chemicals became concentrated in ancient oceans, forming an organic broth which eventually produced living cells. Is this possible?"
    Point 1:
    This statement is simplified, outdated and distorted on multiple levels, to the extent that is essentially meaningless. I am reasonably confident that I could prove that this statement, as written, is nonsense and I am a thorough going Evolutionist. The statement amounts to the first step in constructing a strawman argument. Chick has erected what appears to be the position of his opponents, then he sets about showing it to be false, or at least showing some flaws or internal inconsistencies. That is either ignorance of the true position of evolutionists, or it is dishonest.

    Point 2:
    Use of the term 'Evolutionist'. I have never seen this commented upon elsewhere, but here is my take on it. Describing the two sides of the debate as Creationists and Evolutionists seems, on the face of it, to be fair, convenient and sensible. The traditional creationist believes that God created the world as per the tales in the Bible and will not be swayed from this position. [I am not concerned here with the more moderate creationists who think God created the original life from which everything then evolved, perhaps with an occasional guiding. divine hand. Chick is not in that camp at all.] The evolutionist is then, implicitly, characterised as one who also will not be swayed from their position. This is false. As scientists they have arrived at their position by carefull examination of the evidence. If new evidence emerges, or a superior interpretation of the evidence is presented, then their stance will change accordingly. They are not approaching the issues in the same way.
    The Evolutionist cannot be swayed from his position because it is based upon faith, bolstered by facts that either match or can be twisted to match the conclusions of that faith. The Evolutionist can be swayed from their position because it is based upon the application of science to all available observations and facts.
    As I see it the very use of this term Evolutionist is a subtle attack on the credentials of credos of scientists. That is dishonest.

    Point 3:
    Simple chemicals? Hardly that simple. A substantial portion of the chemicals to be found in the primeval ocean came from the impacting comets that also delivered that ocean. These included aliphatic hydrocarbons; aromatic hydrocarbons (including PAHs); sugars and amino acids. Recently NASA researchers demonstrated that amino acids in an ice matrix, when subject to impact readily form polypeptides, the immediate precursors to proteins. Calling any of these chemicals 'simple' is either ignorance of the true character of the pre-biotic material, or it is dishonest.

    Point 4: "Evolutionists claim that....... eventually produced living cells." No they don't. Evolutionists have nothing to say about the origin of life. Darwinists (all dead now) and neo-darwinists address the evolution of life once it has arisen. Attacking evolution by attacking a related, but quite separate issue is another stawman argument. That is either ignorance of the separateness of the issues of the genesis of life and its subsequent evolution, or it is dishonest.

    Point 5:

    The notion that life arose in a 'primordial soup' first proposed eighty years ago by Haldane and Oparin, is now largely discarded. Why argue against a mechanism that is considered by scientists to be wrong. Again, Heinze is ether being intellectually dishonest, or he is ignorant of what he speaks.

    So, in a single short paragraph we find multiple examples of either ignorance, or intellectual dishonesty, or both. This is what enrages (amuses, or frustrates) us Evolutionists when we encounter Creationist 'arguments'.

    You have displayed an open mind in your postings. You may well question some of the 'facts' I have used in dismissing the Creationist claims. I would be happy to provide references, or further explanation, for any points on which you have remaining doubts.
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    Like I have said, I am not a scientist, so I am not in the position to really say much about your (or previous posters') arguments against Chick's articles. That's why I mentioned about them starting a forum at their website to allow people to debate their claims. Let the authors do the talking. But I guess that might not be a good idea too since that might take up too much of their time debating and not focusing on experimenting and proving their theories.

    As a believer of God, I won't call creationism or ID rubbish. In my view, some of them have tried to put forth their theories in a more scientific way as in those Chick articles as well as the one in http://www.thescienceforum.com/evide...sign-1077t.php
    Maybe it is still not scientific enough. I can't be the judge of that. Let the scientific community put a judge on that. If they can come up with solid theories, they will stand. If their theories are weak, they will eventually crumble. Same goes for evolutionism. In a sense, "survival of the fittest".

    Anyway, I can't say what creationists or ID people have presented are 100% accurate and without flaws. I think these proposed theories are in the process of being refined, scrutinised and reviewed. Well, that's part of science. Right? Theories being proposed, evaluated, dropped or accepted, refined, whatever.

    Who knows. Creationism or ID may ultimately not be the correct answer but I believe as we discover more, the scientific evidences will point to God. And I believe that science and God are not mutually exclusive. If God made this universe and everything there is, science is only just a tool to explore and understand the natural and physical aspects of His creation. So, that does not mean when we study science, we must put God out of the picture.

    That's my 2 cents.
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    As for the claim about God kickstarting the life process and letting evolution takes places on its own without His divine intervene (or with little intervention), I personally don't buy that. (ie, referring to those who said about religious scientist believing in biological evolution as well as God).

    Because the entire bible has more or less portrayed a God that has actively worked His will in the whole course of history. So, that claim or theory doesn't really fit into this idea. If you say God kickstarted and actively guided the evolution process to become what it is today, maybe I can still accept you to a certain extent. But if say little or totally no divine intervention, purely natural means, then I don't think so.
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  48. #47  
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    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Like I have said, I am not a scientist, ...

    So, that does not mean when we study science, we must put God out of the picture.
    Oh, dear.

    Refutation one:
    Yes, we must. The nature of scientific inquiry requires it. An omnipotent God is, by definition, the final answer to all questions. As science is the search for explanations of observed phenomena through measured changes, any reference to a single unmeasurable force with intent and independence of action denies the basic premise.

    Believing the universe began with an omnipotient sentient god saying, "Let there by light" and that the laws of physics took over from there is fine, but it is not a valid scientific theory. One of the greatest difficulties in science is recognizing and eliminating social and cultural biases. I can not support deliberately introducing one.

    Refutation Two:
    Whose God? Your's? Why? Mine? Bet you wouldn't be happy with that.

    Do not argue that no specific religion need be supported; just the use of the word with an upper-case "G" implies a specific religion.

    Now I'm am very frustrated.
    NOT every-one is a christian; NOT everyone is a monotheist; NOT everyone believes in a god. You can believe as you do, but kindly keep your religion out of my science.


    Why do I do this? I promised myself I would not get involved in anymore of these threads.
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    In my opinion, seeing God as the ultimate answer does not necessary make science and experimentation unscientific or unnecessary. I am not sure how the scientific community defines science itself but as I have mentioned, I believe that the natural world and its laws, phenomena, etc are just a physical subset of God's creation. Humans can explore, understand and test this subset using the various sciences. Having God as the final answer does not mean you need not continue your inquiries and let God answer every complex unexplainable phenomena.

    E.g scientists can believe that God created light through the bible verse "Let there be light". That does not mean they simply stop finding out how God did it and let it just be that. They can still come up with theories and hypotheses how light came about, maybe Quantum theory, string theory, big bang, whatever.

    The same goes for other seemingly miraculous events. E.g People in the past used to be awe by the creation of life in a mother's womb. Now scientists are able to discover how exactly life began in a womb - DNA, feotus, sperms, etc. Does that mean God is out of the picture? I would say no. We had only discovered how God did something. It is still scientific, natural stuff, and still points to God. No conflicts there.

    Same goes for irreducible complexity. I personally felt that this complexity might well be discoverable in a scientific manner if enough research is being done, but the end of it would still point to God being the answer behind the process.

    As for whose God, you have to understand that I can only discuss and say things in the context of the God I believe in, that is the christian God, not other gods. Putting a capital G is a form of respect and a way to represent monotheism, not multi-god religion. For believers of other religions, they can also share their opinions here in their own contexts regarding the issue.

    As for whether you (or other people) believe or not, it's your freedom, no one can force you to believe. I am just presenting my viewpoints and opinions here.
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    No, creationism according to the Genesis myth, and the Bible, is not, will not and can not ever be accepted as good scientific explanation for how the universe and everything in it came to be.

    Why?
    Because evidence already shows us that the universe is around 13.7 billion years old, and that the Earth is around 4.6 billion years old. Not 6000 years, not 10000 years.
    Because of the overwhelming evidence in support of biological evolution.
    Because the Earth is not flat, does not rest on pillars, is not at the centre of the universe, and does not have a skydome over it.
    Because even if creationists interpret their mythology as the Earth being round, a global flood is utterly impossible.

    To accept this piece of mythology as the truth, would mean that scientists must redefine many different areas of science, including astronomy, cosmology, geology, archaeology, paleontology, biology, physics and even linguistics. Much evidence that we already have or can see in nature has to go, and they need to find evidence that supports their favourite mythology.

    To accept a god as the answer to everything comes with many problems. How do they know they have found god? They would know only when they have a definition, right? Do they? And then there's the problem of accepting whatever god-like (according to our classification system anyway) creature they find as the ultimate answer. Why stop searching for answers then? Why not figure out who created the creator? Or are there turtles all the way...? ID works like that. They say "too complex, therefore it was designed, case closed." Yeah that's really responsible. Stop searching for answers, because right now we don't have them.

    Oh yeah, and to add unnecessary and superfluous entities is in violation of Ockham's razor, something believers rarely think about.
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    Well, I may be a pro-ID or pro-creationism guy, but I do not totally agree with some of their claims. If you have read my previous posts, you would have roughly catched my stand.

    The 6000 years claim is 1 of them. Although God is able to achieve this 6000 years thing given His almighty powers, the fact that the evidences clearly showed a much older universe would contradict heavily with the claim. And I did read in some places that such a case would probably mean God created a universe that look old but actually not. Close to the idea of fabrication which totally contradicts with His character of truthfulness as portrayed in the bible. Unless God has another purpose in doing that which did not violate His own character and which we are ignorant of.

    Moreover, creationist actually took a literal interpretation of the age figures from Genesis to come up with 6000+ years. As far as I have learnt from my pastors, some things in the bible are actually metaphoric or figurative and not literal. E.g those prophetic books where plenty of imaginary beasts or creatures were depicted.

    Also, there is a verse in the bible (I can't remember where it is) where it says something like - a day in God's eyes is like a thousand years, a thousand years in God's eyes is like a day. From what I have learnt, that means "time" to God is like nothing or non-issue. Another meaning could be since God lives in eternity, thousands of years to Him is just like a single day. Or yet another possible meaning could be He is not bounded by time as humans are.

    What I am trying to drive at is that the "6 days" in Genesis could have a different interpretation other than a purely literal one. It could have meant 6 long ages or even the billions of years as observed now. Of course that would give other problems like if the Sun is created after the plants, how does the plants survived such a long time without photosynthesis?

    The flat earth thing has been invalidate thousands of years ago (if I didn't get the figures wrong). Creationists don't talk about flat earth at all. So, there is no need to debate about this.

    The bible scholars have more or less accepted and believed in a global flood although some of them believed the flood to be local. I dare not make a quick comment on this but I more or less believe in a global flood and I believe God can make it happen if He wants to. Well, again that's my personal opinion.

    I don't know how many areas of science need to be changed if the global flood event is true. It might be as drastic as you said. Yes. They need to find solid scientific evidences to support their claims. And if they do succeed, I don't see why the other sciences shouldn't drop their existing theories even if the changes are drastic.

    Well, I can't really answer your question on how does one know when they have found God. Some scientists like Einstein concluded that God must exists when he was working on his theories and equations (hope I got that correct). Others know it in some other ways. There may not be an absolute answer or method.

    As I have mentioned, I personally felt that irreducible complexity might be explainable. But I am not scientifically qualified to make such a strong statement as the implications could be alot. The concept of irreducible complexity is a good starting point to the idea of God's existence. Even if we managed to discover the mechanism behind this, I believe we are going to find more things that again points back to God. That's my opinion.

    Well, I don't really know what's that Ockham's razor thing that you mentioned. Must be some theorem. Anyway, I do not see God as an unnecessary entity. If He is the creator, how can He be unnecessary? We may not be able to put or use Him in our formulae or equations but that does not mean He is unnecessary.

    Anyway, God is the creator, He is not created and so there is not creator of God.

    If any of you happen to be well-trained theologians or bible scholars who have found my above sentences flawed biblically, feel free to voice them out. I spoke out of my current limited theological knowledge and would be glad to amend any of them.
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    Another point I like to raise is that - the bible is not a complete scientific encyclopedia to answer all science questions. Neither is it a historical encyclopedia to document all historical events precisely. However, with a correct interpretation of the bible, it can give good hints and pointers to help scientists (if they are willing) direct their scientific interpretations of the results. That's what the creationists and ID are trying to do. Again, that's what I have understood so far.
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    Starnamer, you are ignoring the main issues.

    When you specify a religion, and a god, [and you have], you implicitly reject other religions and gods. Scientific knowledge and theory can not belong to only one religion; that's just wrong.

    Gods are absolutes; they can not be studied or experimented upon; they can not be separated into components for further study. Neither can their actions or intent.

    Belief in any god need not contradiction science. Science is not atheism. However, gods do not belong in science; science is about advancing our empirical unstanding of the workings of the universe. If this understanding inspires awe for a creator responsible for these complex and elegant systems, that is wonderful, but it is not science. Knowledge of a god is not empirical.

    Belief itself is antithetical to science. One does not believe in Evolution; one learns of the evidence, evaluates the premises and postulates, accepts the conclusions, and agrees with the theory. Or one questions the premises and postulates, designs addition experiments or re-evaluates the evidence, modifies the conclustion, and advances the theory.
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    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    That's what the creationists and ID are trying to do. Again, that's what I have understood so far.
    You have misunderstood what they are trying to do. They are trying to reconcile the irreconcilable. They are trying to meld the absolutism of an immovable cult with the flexibility of a suite of processes. The Creationists are doing this with a spoonful more honesty than the IDists, who are pretending a scientific approach when none exists.
    Religion and science are, in general, not mutually exclusive. Creationism and intelligent design, and science are.
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    It doesn't really matter what the Bible has to say. What matters is the scientific method to study the nature and the universe. To mix it up with a certain religion just because you happen to like that particular religion, is a terrible thing to do. It makes no sense. Observe nature, set up a hypothesis, test it and its predictions, see if it works or fails. If the conclusions does not agree with the Bible, why should anyone stick to that old book of myths when they already have a good theory based on observations and actual science?
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    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    The 6000 years claim is 1 of them. Although God is able to achieve this 6000 years thing given His almighty powers, the fact that the evidences clearly showed a much older universe would contradict heavily with the claim. And I did read in some places that such a case would probably mean God created a universe that look old but actually not.
    I've heard that one so many times. Is god a liar? Did she plant all the fossils in the ground to fool us?

    What is the difference between a universe that is old, and a universe that in all ways appear to be old? If it looks old in every way, then we have little choice but to conclude that it is old.


    What I am trying to drive at is that the "6 days" in Genesis could have a different interpretation other than a purely literal one. It could have meant 6 long ages or even the billions of years as observed now. Of course that would give other problems like if the Sun is created after the plants, how does the plants survived such a long time without photosynthesis?
    Why even bother to try and get the Bible to say the same thing as science can hear nature say? Why not just study nature and see how things are? If it contradicts fiction, no harm done, really.

    The flat earth thing has been invalidate thousands of years ago (if I didn't get the figures wrong). Creationists don't talk about flat earth at all. So, there is no need to debate about this.
    Maybe those creationists who believe in the inerrancy of the Bible and are literalists.

    The bible scholars have more or less accepted and believed in a global flood although some of them believed the flood to be local. I dare not make a quick comment on this but I more or less believe in a global flood and I believe God can make it happen if He wants to. Well, again that's my personal opinion.
    But why do you believe it? Is it because your favourite religion says so? Or is it because actual evidence found in nature supports such an idea? Something to think about.


    I don't know how many areas of science need to be changed if the global flood event is true. It might be as drastic as you said. Yes. They need to find solid scientific evidences to support their claims. And if they do succeed, I don't see why the other sciences shouldn't drop their existing theories even if the changes are drastic.
    The problem is of course that the current theories and models in all the fields I mentioned are strongly supported by actual evidence. To falsify them all, would take something that would invalidate all that evidence, and to prove Genesis creationism (or whichever myth you prefer) there would have to be evidence for it.

    Basically, most evidence in support of current theories would need to disappear, that is, the universe would have to transform in a drastic way so it would allow observations that would support Genesis creationism. That is the only possibility!

    Well, I can't really answer your question on how does one know when they have found God.
    Well, we need a definition of her, right? How else do we know when we have found her?

    Some scientists like Einstein concluded that God must exists when he was working on his theories and equations (hope I got that correct). Others know it in some other ways. There may not be an absolute answer or method.
    As far as I can understand, Einstein claimed to be an atheist, but it's also possible at some time he was a pantheist. He never believed in personal gods.


    Well, I don't really know what's that Ockham's razor thing that you mentioned. Must be some theorem. Anyway, I do not see God as an unnecessary entity. If He is the creator, how can He be unnecessary? We may not be able to put or use Him in our formulae or equations but that does not mean He is unnecessary.
    It means that a theory should not contain no unnecessary entities. That is why we don't have theories of gravitation involving invisible angels pushing the planets along in their paths, for example.

    Anyway, God is the creator, He is not created and so there is not creator of God.
    That's your belief. What is the foundation of this belief?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stargazer
    ... the Bible, why should anyone stick to that old book of myths ...
    I have a problem with this; I think it is an attack on a specific religion. I don't think that is anymore appropriate than arguing science has a place for religion.

    Some people have been taught that scientific inquiry is an attack on religion; attacking their religion is not going to convince them otherwise.

    I keep hoping to find a thread about the religious reflections of people who happen to be scientists, but every post seems to degenerate in a Religion versus Science Winner-Take-All Grudge Match. [or String Theory ...]

    You can not persuade religious people to accept scientific theories by belittling their religions. That makes no more sense than arguing that God would have created a universe that only appears to be older than the bible says it is.
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    Why would I convince them to accept scientific theories by expressing my opinions on religion? What does that have to do with it? I just said it was a book of myths, especially the Genesis part that we focused on. I wonder why this is the same as belittling their religion. Aren't most religions based on mythologies?

    And the scientific method and religion are not compatible. It might work if you decide to ignore skepticism and Ockham's razor in some cases, and not in other cases. Science and religion are completely different.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stargazer
    And the scientific method and religion are not compatible. ......Science and religion are completely different.
    Your second statement invalidates the first. It is because they are completely different and separate that they are compatible.
    Note that I am not applying this to all religions, but to Religion. Science has nothing to say about the existence or non-existence of God or gods. Those scientists who claim it does are behaving in a decidedly non-scientific manner.
    Certain religions, of which fundamental christianity is the most obvious, are not compatible with science. In my own view this does not alter my thesis, since it I would characterise the creationist viewpoint, for example, as a cult and not a religion.
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    I must be truly bad at English, because it is often difficult to explain these things. Science and religion are very different. One deals with observations and empirical evidence, etc., and the other deals with beliefs that seem to originate from either wishful thinking or thin air. Those two mindsets and philosophies are incompatible.

    To, on the one hand, realise what science is and why it's so successful, and to have a skeptic mind, and on the other hand actually think it is a good idea to throw all that out the window and believe whichever mythologies that lack all kinds of necessity, evidence or support anywhere, is just strange. Bizarre, even.

    What purpose does religion serve, really? To answer questions about the universe and everything in it? No, that's what science is for. To teach us morals? Weird. Can't we come up with common rules that do not need to be protected by the supposed authority of a magical god? What is the belief in a set of myths good for? The feel-good factor?
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    Stargazer, your explanation was clear. I am simply saying I believe it to be wrong. Science and religion deal with different aspects of our existence. Broadly science deals with the how, while religion deals with the why. They are complementary.
    Again, I do make a distinction between the cultist and the truly religious person. The latter will have as open a mind as any a true scientist. A belief in God is not at odds with an adherence to scientific principles.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Quote Originally Posted by Stargazer
    And the scientific method and religion are not compatible. ......Science and religion are completely different.
    ... It is because they are completely different and separate that they are compatible. ...
    Broadly science deals with the how, while religion deals with the why. They are complementary.
    Ah, yes. Exactly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stargazer
    I just said it was a book of myths, especially the Genesis part that we focused on. I wonder why this is the same as belittling their religion.
    No, you didn't; you referred to the Bible as ' ... that old book of myths ...' If you do not understand why that is belittling, you do not have a decent grasp of the language, '... must be truly bad at English'.


    Quote Originally Posted by Stargazer
    What purpose does religion serve, really?
    Obviously, Religion should stay away from the 'How' questions. I think it does. For those who think otherwise and quote Genesis, I have one word: Parable.

    As for a moral codes, why not? Yes, we can and do devise secular moral codes. I prefer secular moral codes because then a person can not attribute some heinous act, like blowing up a medical facility, on 'God's Will'. Still, religions have the right to devise a moral code. And it is a great way to teach children, who worry more about getting caught than about right and wrong.

    So what is Religion for? I think that people need to find that out for themselves.

    But I've been wrong before.

    Religion is to give expression to the wonder and awe the beauty and complexity of universe inspires.
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    Wow. Too many replies. Don't think I can really reply them all. I will just say a few.

    Quote Originally Posted by j
    When you specify a religion, and a god, [and you have], you implicitly reject other religions and gods. Scientific knowledge and theory can not belong to only one religion; that's just wrong.

    Gods are absolutes; they can not be studied or experimented upon; they can not be separated into components for further study. Neither can their actions or intent.

    Belief in any god need not contradiction science. Science is not atheism. However, gods do not belong in science; science is about advancing our empirical unstanding of the workings of the universe. If this understanding inspires awe for a creator responsible for these complex and elegant systems, that is wonderful, but it is not science. Knowledge of a god is not empirical.

    Belief itself is antithetical to science. One does not believe in Evolution; one learns of the evidence, evaluates the premises and postulates, accepts the conclusions, and agrees with the theory. Or one questions the premises and postulates, designs addition experiments or re-evaluates the evidence, modifies the conclustion, and advances the theory.
    Yes, as I have mentioned, I only believe in Christian God, not others. And the bible clearly states that there is only one God in the bible, no other gods. I am sure that will offend alot of religious people but I am just stating what I believe and learnt. And why I believe so is because if God is omnipotent, one is enough, you don't need multiple gods, each having partial powers, taking care of a sub area of the universe.

    Yes. God cannot be dissected like a frog in the lab or be defined as a term in an equation or be run in a computer simulation so that you can use it to derive predictions or results. If we can really do that, who is God then? Humans or God? But God's intents and will can be discerned from the bible. Through a personal relationship and a correct and healthy interpretation of the bible, you can understand His will in your life and other things.

    As I have mentioned, science is a tool to study the physical and natural subset of God's creation. There are other things like moral, social, spiritual parts. Science is not a part of these. So, the fact that science derives results and conclusions pointing to God from evidences and empirical studies, in my opinion, does not conflict. Once we step into the moral or other non-science realm, yes, it shouldn't be considered science. Knowledge of God regarding how He created and maintained the natural universe using physical laws and theories can be empirical. Knowledge of God regarding moral issues is not.

    So, in a certain sense, if creationism or ID can come up with solid proofs in the scientific realm about origins and cosmology, the schools should teach this alongside with evolution, but for moral stuff, they should redirect the students to the religion classes. That will hopefully ensure we don't mix up science with religion.

    I would tend to believe that evolution requires a certain level of faith too. As far as I have known, there is not a single direct evidence that shows transitional fossils, ie fossils that showed clearly that a species is in the process of evolving halfway into another species. All fossils showed species in their final forms. So, to actually conclude that biological evolution has taken place requires the scientists to "believe" or put their faith in the theory that it is what it claims to be. Correct me if I am wrong.

    That's what creationist are trying to do. They came up with theories (Hydroplate theory, etc, whatever) and try to support them with evidences, hypotheses, cross references, etc. They may not be that successful but they have tried and they will continue to try.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    That's what the creationists and ID are trying to do. Again, that's what I have understood so far.
    You have misunderstood what they are trying to do. They are trying to reconcile the irreconcilable. They are trying to meld the absolutism of an immovable cult with the flexibility of a suite of processes. The Creationists are doing this with a spoonful more honesty than the IDists, who are pretending a scientific approach when none exists.
    Religion and science are, in general, not mutually exclusive. Creationism and intelligent design, and science are.
    Their approach might be unscientific in a certain sense, but they have brought up a few important concepts that leaves scientists to ponder like the irreducible complexity thing. Harvard is starting a research on this. That's good right? They might have pushed their issues too strongly and eagerly. Guess they just want their children to have a more correct overall knowledge of things in life (in their sense).

    Again regarding the mutual exclusiveness thing, I have already stated my opinions. Creationism and ID are trying to reconcile religion and science more scientifically. With more efforts and time, I am sure they can achieve scientific results without totally abandoning their stand. That's my personal opinion.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stargazer
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    The 6000 years claim is 1 of them. Although God is able to achieve this 6000 years thing given His almighty powers, the fact that the evidences clearly showed a much older universe would contradict heavily with the claim. And I did read in some places that such a case would probably mean God created a universe that look old but actually not.
    I've heard that one so many times. Is god a liar? Did she plant all the fossils in the ground to fool us?

    What is the difference between a universe that is old, and a universe that in all ways appear to be old? If it looks old in every way, then we have little choice but to conclude that it is old.
    That's what creationists are trying to reconcile. They try to explain the young earth thing with hypotheses and theories like Hydroplate, Genesis flood, etc. Personally, some of the issues they pointed out does make logical sense to me. E.g. fossils can be formed in a very short time in a lab environment given high temperature, pressure and other factors. Although this does not invalidate the current theory that all fossils are formed over a long period of time, it does open a new possibility for scientist to take a closer look at their conclusions. ie, "What if the fossils we saw are formed by a global flood? What scientific conclusions can that lead us to?"

    What I am trying to drive at is that the "6 days" in Genesis could have a different interpretation other than a purely literal one. It could have meant 6 long ages or even the billions of years as observed now. Of course that would give other problems like if the Sun is created after the plants, how does the plants survived such a long time without photosynthesis?
    Why even bother to try and get the Bible to say the same thing as science can hear nature say? Why not just study nature and see how things are? If it contradicts fiction, no harm done, really.
    It is because the bible as I believe isn't fiction or myth. If that is so, the implications are great. Human fate and judgement, etc. It is not a trivia thing whether you eat fast food or a proper meal today or whatever.

    The flat earth thing has been invalidate thousands of years ago (if I didn't get the figures wrong). Creationists don't talk about flat earth at all. So, there is no need to debate about this.
    Maybe those creationists who believe in the inerrancy of the Bible and are literalists.
    I guess they might be at a stage of sticking with the 6000 yr theory and trying to see if things work out. If not, they might move on to another explanation. That's also part of science right? Trying out possibilities with a certain theory first before giving up and trying another.

    The bible scholars have more or less accepted and believed in a global flood although some of them believed the flood to be local. I dare not make a quick comment on this but I more or less believe in a global flood and I believe God can make it happen if He wants to. Well, again that's my personal opinion.
    But why do you believe it? Is it because your favourite religion says so? Or is it because actual evidence found in nature supports such an idea? Something to think about.
    I believe because this faith gives an overall logical and sensible explanation of humans and the state they are currently in. It also explains much about some of the inherent moral failures I have personally experienced and how I could have practically and effectively overcome them. This is then naturally extended to the scientific realm where I believe that God is also true about the creation thing which makes me believe that scientific creation is definitely possible.

    I don't know how many areas of science need to be changed if the global flood event is true. It might be as drastic as you said. Yes. They need to find solid scientific evidences to support their claims. And if they do succeed, I don't see why the other sciences shouldn't drop their existing theories even if the changes are drastic.
    The problem is of course that the current theories and models in all the fields I mentioned are strongly supported by actual evidence. To falsify them all, would take something that would invalidate all that evidence, and to prove Genesis creationism (or whichever myth you prefer) there would have to be evidence for it.

    Basically, most evidence in support of current theories would need to disappear, that is, the universe would have to transform in a drastic way so it would allow observations that would support Genesis creationism. That is the only possibility!
    Agree. To proof that, the creationist would have to work hard.

    Well, I can't really answer your question on how does one know when they have found God.
    Well, we need a definition of her, right? How else do we know when we have found her?
    That's a "trademark" that I often see in scientists. They are so used to seeing things in terms of definitions, equations, theories, etc that they could easily miss the point. Reminds me of the Fantastic Four movie. Mr Fantastic (did I get the name correct? that plastic guy) was so into equations, balancing stuff, theories, definitions that he totally missed the point about his romance and relationship with that invisible lady.

    Same goes for me as an IT engineer. I am so used to logic, algorithms, programming, computers, virtual communication like this forum thing, that I have become pretty lacking in the real social world, relating to my family, friends, etc. Not too good.

    Basically, you can find God in a scientific way, you can also find God through a personal relationship with Him, through the bible and church. Maybe scientists should try to think out of the box for a while sometimes (without abandoning their scientific ways that is)?
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    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer

    Yes, as I have mentioned, I only believe in Christian God, ....
    All that if fine with me, as long as you don't tell me what to believe [and you haven't]; I just get so annoyed by that.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Yes. God cannot be dissected like a frog in the lab or be defined as a term in an equation or be run in a computer simulation so that you can use it to derive predictions or results...
    Which is my basic point; and if one can not do that, science can not address the whole Supreme Being issue. As for the rest of the paragraph, fine [although I wish that you would say 'one can ...', rather than '..you can...']
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Knowledge of God regarding how He created and maintained the natural universe using physical laws and theories can be empirical.
    This is where I disagree with you so strongly I am willing to say that you are wrong. In fact, I think this is blasphemy.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    So, in a certain sense, if creationism or ID can come up with solid proofs in the scientific realm about origins and cosmology, ...
    This is the point at which I start to wonder why I bother. No, I can not even address this paragraph. And I can't handle the rest of the post. I just ...
    ... can't.
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    Starnamer, first let me applaud your effort to be open minded and balanced. It is refeshing. Please maintian this approach, it will lead you to the truth, and perhaps even the Truth.
    What disappoints me, and I think has frustrated J to the point where he gave up mid post, is that the balance and open mindedness you are displaying is not part of the ID approach. They are faking it. They are being intellectually dishonest.
    I do not want you to accept that. I want you to keep that thought in mind as you pursue your quest for knowledge. As I said above, this way you will find the truth.
    I want to address one point you made.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    "What if the fossils we saw are formed by a global flood? What scientific conclusions can that lead us to?"
    When you have walked the hills and valleys, as I have, collecting fossils, noting their type and apparent relationship; when you have witnessed the subtle changes occuring form layer to layer; when you have related the character of the rocks to present day environments; when you have seen the majestic change of these environments and their flora and fauna over countless ages; when you have seen all this, first hand, the notion of a universal flood becomes simply impossible to believe. An act of faith will not do it. An act of lunacy might.
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    Quote Originally Posted by j
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer

    Yes, as I have mentioned, I only believe in Christian God, ....
    All that if fine with me, as long as you don't tell me what to believe [and you haven't]; I just get so annoyed by that.
    Well, I will try my best not to do that. I do (and still) make this mistake every now and then even till now.

    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Yes. God cannot be dissected like a frog in the lab or be defined as a term in an equation or be run in a computer simulation so that you can use it to derive predictions or results...
    Which is my basic point; and if one can not do that, science can not address the whole Supreme Being issue. As for the rest of the paragraph, fine [although I wish that you would say 'one can ...', rather than '..you can...']
    If that's how the science community sees the issue, then I can't really say much. Well, science can't put God into equations directly, but it cannot ignore the possibility that the results and evidences may point to God's existence or involvement. It is just something like the current observations "point" or help scientists to infer that the universe started out in a big bang. I believe "putting God directly in equations" and "inferring His existence and involvement from evidences" are 2 quite different cases. The latter should have less conflict with empirical science. That's my opinion.

    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Knowledge of God regarding how He created and maintained the natural universe using physical laws and theories can be empirical.
    This is where I disagree with you so strongly I am willing to say that you are wrong. In fact, I think this is blasphemy.
    When you say blasphemy, do you mean man is not supposed to know how exactly He created and maintained the universe? If we do know, then we will be God and that is considered blasphemy? Maybe true to a certain extent. But I feel that even if we do know, we cannot possibly re-create another universe or big bang or human race by ourselves. So, in this sense, we can never surpass God.

    Anyway, this might be very similar to humans now trying to create life through cloning or even designer babies. They know the mechanism and they try to play God.

    I think a sincere desire to know God (and His ways regarding things like creation) might not be blasphemy. It's like "Now I know how things happened. Wow. That's cool! Look everyone! Take a look at this cool discovery I have made about creation!".

    If one says "Haha. You see, God, I know how You created the universe. Look everybody, I am as clever as God!". Then more likely that's blasphemous. Again, those well-trained bible scholars or theologians, please correct me if I am wrong.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Starnamer, first let me applaud your effort to be open minded and balanced. It is refeshing. Please maintian this approach, it will lead you to the truth, and perhaps even the Truth.
    What disappoints me, and I think has frustrated J to the point where he gave up mid post, is that the balance and open mindedness you are displaying is not part of the ID approach. They are faking it. They are being intellectually dishonest.
    I do not want you to accept that. I want you to keep that thought in mind as you pursue your quest for knowledge. As I said above, this way you will find the truth.
    I want to address one point you made.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    "What if the fossils we saw are formed by a global flood? What scientific conclusions can that lead us to?"
    When you have walked the hills and valleys, as I have, collecting fossils, noting their type and apparent relationship; when you have witnessed the subtle changes occuring form layer to layer; when you have related the character of the rocks to present day environments; when you have seen the majestic change of these environments and their flora and fauna over countless ages; when you have seen all this, first hand, the notion of a universal flood becomes simply impossible to believe. An act of faith will not do it. An act of lunacy might.
    Thanks Ophiolite. All I can say is, I will try to keep my opinions and approach this way.

    As for the creationism and ID thing, I think I have commented enough about it. The more I comment about them, the more I might end up saying the wrong thing and be smashing a rock on my own feet. I will just sit back and keep track of how things are developing. 8)

    For the fossils thing, I don't think I will ever have a chance to do that, unless there is a special tour package for the public to visit archeological sites, which I seriously doubt so.

    Anyway, I still believe in the global flood (or more precisely - Genesis flood) thing. If you say that's not open-minded, well too bad. Just a recap plus a few more points.

    - Fossils can form within a very short period of time given the correct factors - pressure, temperature, etc.
    - Also, water is one of the possible important agents in the formation of fossils. Got that from the creationism articles.
    - Human artefacts like gold chains found in coal deposits.
    - No single direct evidence of transitional fossils observed till now. All species are observed to be in their final forms. (Maybe not too related to the flood thing)
    - How does one explain the Cambrian Explosion? (a bit out of the context of the flood issue. More about general biological evolution)
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    I am back, and I am calm.

    What upset me so much before is the feeling that starnamer is being corrupted by religious leaders. You, starn'r, obviously have an open mind, a sense of wonder, and awe; you want to embrace both science and your religion.

    And you can. Science is not stopping you; your religion is not stopping you. You can struggle to reconcile Genesis with current scientific theory logically or liguistically, or you can reconcile them spiritually.

    Religion is NOT logical; there are no premises, postulates, and conclusions; there are no proofs. There is faith and gnosis. There is awe.

    Go to the Grand Canyon; look across at the visible geological strata. Imagine the ages and the forces that created that beauty.

    Are you going to waste your religion on quibbling over exactly how long it took?
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    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    When you say blasphemy, do you mean man is not supposed to know how exactly He created and maintained the universe? If we do know, then we will be God and that is considered blasphemy? Maybe true to a certain extent. But I feel that even if we do know, we cannot possibly re-create another universe or big bang or human race by ourselves. So, in this sense, we can never surpass God.
    I think I reserve 'blasphemy' for the arrogance of presuming to measure God. Science is measurement. I could present a logical argument that measuring God is impossible, but I think that would be intellectually dishonest. I don't care if it is impossible, I believe it is the essential blasphemy.

    I do not mean that seeking knowledge and understanding is, or can ever be, blasphemous.

    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Anyway, this might be very similar to humans now trying to create life through cloning or even designer babies. They know the mechanism and they try to play God.
    I, too, worry about the arrogance of science. But if my family had a history of MS and I wanted a baby, I would be first in line.

    Prometheus was punished by his gods for stealing fire.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    I think a sincere desire to know God (and His ways regarding things like creation) might not be blasphemy. It's like "Now I know how things happened. Wow. That's cool! Look everyone! Take a look at this cool discovery I have made about creation!".
    And I believe that is exactly how every scientist, 'believer' or not, feels.
    See Ophiolite's post; can't you feel wonder and the awe?

    [BTW, you are very respectful of other's beliefs; that whole you v. one issue is just a pet peeve of mine about this language.]
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    Quote Originally Posted by j
    What upset me so much before is the feeling that starnamer is being corrupted by religious leaders. You, starn'r, obviously have an open mind, a sense of wonder, and awe; you want to embrace both science and your religion.
    Just like to make a quick point that I would tend to think that religious scientists and the average religious public isn't all that naive (again referring to the christian community which I am familiar with). Many of them are engineers, professionals, with PHDs, masters, double degrees, scholars, whatever and plenty of common sense.

    For example, I used to attend a church and as you know people usually give offerings to the church weekly. People would wonder did they really make good use of the money? Then I attended their AGM and they openly announced their financial status, cash flows in a systematic manner with another accountant as something like an auditor. Then they would post questions to the floor for doubts and queries.

    So, in a sense, they are pretty open and transparent in this issue. No-nonsense. I am not sure if all churches does that. But if the leaders are really fooling around, their acts will be exposed in a matter of time. An example would be a priest in my country in another church was caught misusing the church funds secretly for years and was recently put to jail.

    So I am trying to say that the religion that I believe in isn't like some cult groups that brainwash people until they have no resistance or reasoning of their own and everything the bible or leaders say they will accept even if it is so ridiculous.

    And you can. Science is not stopping you; your religion is not stopping you. You can struggle to reconcile Genesis with current scientific theory logically or liguistically, or you can reconcile them spiritually.
    You are right. No one can stop me or the creationists. That's the same idea with you not wanting God in your science or not wanting to believe in God. No one can stop you from putting God out of your science or make you believe in Him. God gave man absolute freedom to make and be responsible for their own decisions.

    Religion is NOT logical; there are no premises, postulates, and conclusions; there are no proofs. There is faith and gnosis. There is awe.
    Yes, in your sense or definition of logic, you are right. There are no premises, proofs, whatever in the bible. As mentioned previously, the bible isn't meant to be a complete encyclopedia about science, philosophy or history. It can be a guide, give pointers, hints, or whatever terms appropriate and that's how creationists are trying to use it as.

    Go to the Grand Canyon; look across at the visible geological strata. Imagine the ages and the forces that created that beauty.

    Are you going to waste your religion on quibbling over exactly how long it took?
    If my religion is just about imagination, awe, feeling good, wows, I-have-this-great-feeling-and-lets-get-back-to-life, then yes, debating is a waste of our time. But it is not. It is about how life is linked back to God, the fate of humans and what God has installed for us. It is not a myth. And if proving events in the bible scientifically can make differences in people's mindsets about God, then it is not a waste. Plain imagination, awe and admiration without any impact in ours or others lives is a waste. And that's why creationists (and ID) exist.
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    Quote Originally Posted by j
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    When you say blasphemy, do you mean man is not supposed to know how exactly He created and maintained the universe? If we do know, then we will be God and that is considered blasphemy? Maybe true to a certain extent. But I feel that even if we do know, we cannot possibly re-create another universe or big bang or human race by ourselves. So, in this sense, we can never surpass God.
    I think I reserve 'blasphemy' for the arrogance of presuming to measure God. Science is measurement. I could present a logical argument that measuring God is impossible, but I think that would be intellectually dishonest. I don't care if it is impossible, I believe it is the essential blasphemy.

    I do not mean that seeking knowledge and understanding is, or can ever be, blasphemous.
    Yes. I agree with you on both points you have made.

    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Anyway, this might be very similar to humans now trying to create life through cloning or even designer babies. They know the mechanism and they try to play God.
    I, too, worry about the arrogance of science. But if my family had a history of MS and I wanted a baby, I would be first in line.
    Pardon me. What's MS? Must be some inherited disease? For me, even if I want a baby, I won't resort to cloning. Imagine your baby having the same looks as you. Test tube babies or artificial insemination are still ok. Designer babies are more like an "luxurious" and unnecessary option unless tweaking the DNA could cure the baby of some serious defects, thus eliminating the need to abort it.

    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    I think a sincere desire to know God (and His ways regarding things like creation) might not be blasphemy. It's like "Now I know how things happened. Wow. That's cool! Look everyone! Take a look at this cool discovery I have made about creation!".
    And I believe that is exactly how every scientist, 'believer' or not, feels.
    See Ophiolite's post; can't you feel wonder and the awe?

    [BTW, you are very respectful of other's beliefs; that whole you v. one issue is just a pet peeve of mine about this language.]
    Yes. I can feel his wonder and awe. That's good. Work + interest.

    Thanks. Frankly speaking, I do have the "disrespectful" weakness in my real-life communications every now and then as I have mentioned previously.

    One thing is that the bible (if you don't mind) teaches us the seriousness of every careless remarks we make and the damages one can make through our tongues (words that is). It says something like "life and death are in the powers of the tongue". That means the words you speak can mean life and death to a person. It can bring peace, joy, etc or bring anger, strife, discouragement. I learnt this big lesson only recently and am still learning.

    Also, there is a good thing about virtual communication like this forum thing is that I can think through and edit (over and over again) what I wanted to say carefully before posting it. If things get hot, I can also cool down first before I reply. In that way, I can ensure I get the message through in the clearest and most appropriate manner.

    Real-time communications do not have this privilege. I need to be quick enough to respond and usually my mouth is faster than my brain. If you were to speak to me in person, you will believe what I say here. Maybe that's also the pitfall of virtual communication. Get too used to online stuff and your real life drops. So, I need to invest more time and effort in my real life communication. I want to get married to a real woman, not a virtual woman.
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    Just a small correction. I think the human artefact in the coal deposit case is not scientifically confirmed. So, I will have to take that back.
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    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Just a recap plus a few more points.
    Let me address your points.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    - Fossils can form within a very short period of time given the correct factors - pressure, temperature, etc.
    I should be very interested to see the published experiments on this. In particular I should like to know what constitutes 'a very short period of time'. To a geologist, for example, 100,000 years is 'a very short period of time'. Equally, what temperatures and pressures are required to induce this fossilisation process? How likely is it that these conditions would be replicated in flood? (I don't expect you to have an answer to these questions. I rather suspect, though, that the proponents of the theory don't either. I can prove almost anything if I select my evidence.)
    I find it quite plausible that some fossilisation can occur quite rapidly, even on a human, rather than a geological time scale. But all fossilisation is not the same: there are degrees of replacement, preservation and distortion. I find it wholly improbable that the diversity of fossilisation processes we find in the field could be accounted for by a single process instituted at a correct suite of temperatures and pressures.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Also, water is one of the possible important agents in the formation of fossils. Got that from the creationism articles.
    This is correct. It is important as a medium to transport chemicals that will replace the preservable parts of the fossilising organism. But water is present in nearly all sediments. It does not require a flood to deliver that water. This is simply not an issue.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Human artefacts like gold chains found in coal deposits.
    I see you have discounted this one. Thank you. It is similar to the 'live frog found in rock cavity', or 'human footprints found in rocks containing dinosaurs'. These incidents have been long since debunked, yet many creationists continue to quote them as if they were factual.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    No single direct evidence of transitional fossils observed till now. All species are observed to be in their final forms.
    This is simply untrue. I am feeling a little of the frustration that J felt a few posts back. How can I condense into a few words the overwhelming, incontrovertible evidence for the evolution of species and the huge number of transistional forms? I don't know how to do it, so I'll use an analogy.
    I show you a photograph album of my son, from when he was a baby till he became a young man. You look first at him as a day old child, then celebrating his twenty first birthday.
    "That's not the same person. They are completely different." I insist that it really is the same person.
    "Impossible. There are no transitional forms between this and this." I show you a number of pictures of him as a toddler, his first year in school, riding a bike for the first time.
    "No. There is no evidence that this child here, on the bike, is the same as this one carrying school books. They merely look similar. There are no transitional forms between the two." I show you more photographs, including a sequence when he was eight when I photographed him every week for a year.
    "No. This is still meaningless. You see here he is wearing shorts and a green T-shirt and in the next photograph he has on long trousers and a blue formal shirt. He cannot be the same person. You do not have a photograph of him with long trousers and a green t-shirt. Your sequence is full of missing links. No transitional forms anywhere. I don't believe these are all of the same person."
    End of analogy.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    How does one explain the Cambrian Explosion? (a bit out of the context of the flood issue. More about general biological evolution)
    Several points here. The Cambrian Explosion is a little like those stars of stage and screen who become an overnight success .... after working their butts off in their industry for twenty years.
    Complex organisms arose well before the Cambrian but were not recognised because (a) they did not have hard parts that are compartively easy to preserve. (b) they were microscopic in size.
    The actual timing of the Cambrian explosion was probably related to a rapid increase in oxygen content in the atmosphere - this allowed creatures to get bigger - and to the end of a Snowball Earth episode, in which all or most of the planet was ice bound.

    Hope that helped.
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    Let me get back to your points again when I have found some references. This debate thing is pretty exhaustive and taxing, so need a break. :wink:
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    I am sure I am going to get mentally drained from this again.

    Anyway, 2 major points.
    - lack of transitional fossils
    - quick fossil formation

    Please understand that I can't possibly bring out all articles, papers, evidences for these 2 very highly debated topics in the evolution vs creation field. I tried to find sources on the Internt using google.com. Wow. Lots of information! Can't possibly read them all. Ok. So I did selective reading. Maybe more reading on what interests or supports my ideas. But I will still try to show the links of those that does not support my ideas or beliefs to be fair so that people can still read them.
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    I shall start with transitional fossils.

    Ok. There are claims that transitional fossils have been found. Here they are:

    By Kathleen Hunt. Managed to read only the introduction. Too much terms and species stuff.
    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-transitional.html

    Another related and famous article by Hunt. Or compiled by her?
    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/horses/horse_evol.html

    The wikipedia is the only one short (and understandable) enough for me to get a good glance what fossils are mentioned.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transitional_fossil

    Here are some articles by Richard Miller against Kathleen Hunt's horse articles, pointing out some of the scientific flaws in her articles and approach. Also one on speciation. Richard miller is not a creationist but an anti-evolutionist.
    http://www.alternativescience.com/ta...ins-horses.htm
    http://www.alternativescience.com/ta...peciations.htm

    Then there is an article against Richard Miller which I read only abit. But guess it is against his viewpoints and approach. http://skepdic.com/refuge/altscience.html

    Basically, I am trying to trace the credibility of the authors. Much like tracing the authencity of internet certificate authorities to the root. But this looks like an impossible task. Human credibility and digital certificate authencity are too different things. I think this tracing could go on and on forever.

    Here are some arguments against the transitional fossil claims by some creationists and/or scientists. Read some, not all.
    http://members.iinet.net.au/~sejones/fsslrc04.html

    Then here is a rebuttal of talkorigins.org claims by trueorigin including one on transitional fossils by Hunt. Also the rebuttal by talkorigins against the trueorigins rebuttal.
    http://www.trueorigin.org/isakrbtl.asp
    http://www.trueorigin.org/isakrbtl.asp#fossils
    http://www.mindspring.com/~duckster/evolution/
    http://www.mindspring.com/~duckster/...nsitional.html

    So, what can I say here? Too much information and too much rebuttals here and there. I will just make a simple statement of my own.

    Yes, there are claims of transitional fossils. To really proof that these are indeed the indisputable ones filling the missing link gaps, all things (findings, documentation, analysis, etc) must be done scientifically and objectively.

    Did the evolutionists achieve that? Are the claims scientifically and indisputably conclusive? Looking at the rebuttals back and forth, I am not sure I can really trust their claims immediately. All I can say is, I think I will sit back and see how things develop further on this thing.
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    Wow. Don’t you people ever sleep?

    Starnamer:
    I meant intellectually corrupted, and I don’t think you are naive.

    MS is multiple sclerosis: chronic, slowly progressive autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system attacks the protective myelin sheaths that surround the nerve cells of the brain and spinal cord (a process called demyelination), resulting in damaged areas that are unable to transmit nerve impulses. The disease also gradually damages the nerves themselves. [The columbia encyclopedia].

    I am flattered, but I did not define logic.

    No one wants to stop you from believing what you believe; teaching it in a secular institution is a different matter.

    And you definitely did not understand my Grand Canyon analogy.

    But I will not debate evidence, because I am not an archeologist or a paleoentologist and because I think Creationism is both an intellectual and a spiritual dead-end. I don’t even think it is very religious.

    BTW, I am finding this very emotionally draining.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    This is simply untrue. I am feeling a little of the frustration that J felt a few posts back. How can I condense into a few words the overwhelming, incontrovertible evidence for the evolution of species and the huge number of transistional forms?
    You go, girl.

    I think SN and I just profoundly disagree on the nature of religion, so I am at peace.

    I have cruised some of the Creationist web-sites, and cruised some of the sites that offer point by point analyses of Creationist claims [including the references to the Bible]. One thing I have learnt as a scientist is to ask for the raw data. But it just feels like the search for the Philosopher's Stone.

    Aside: do you know of any books that discus geology or paleoentology for 'lay' scientists? That bridge the gap between popular, which just present conclusions, and professional, which are over this chemist's head?
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    Quote Originally Posted by j
    Wow. Don’t you people ever sleep?
    Well, I do. I think I just happen to be in a different timezone as yours or others.

    Starnamer:
    I meant intellectually corrupted, and I don’t think you are naive.
    Ok. I see what you mean but I won't debate this corruption thing or else it will be endless. Thanks for not seeing me as naive.

    No one wants to stop you from believing what you believe; teaching it in a secular institution is a different matter.
    Well, agree. As previously mentioned, my stand is that creationism or ID or whatever alternative cosmological theory can qualify to be taught in schools if it can be supported with genuine scientific claims and proofs of what they intend to teach at the same time not mixing science with religion.

    If one has a scientific portion, teach in science class, if it also has a religious portion, teach that in religion class. If one has to reference God in the scientific portion, give just enough reference and then for more information, redirect them back to the religion class. Does that work in US? I am not sure. Just giving a suggestion.

    And you definitely did not understand my Grand Canyon analogy.

    But I will not debate evidence, because I am not an archeologist or a paleoentologist and because I think Creationism is both an intellectual and a spiritual dead-end. I don’t even think it is very religious.

    BTW, I am finding this very emotionally draining.
    Maybe I didn't understand. If you feel like it, you can always elaborate further. Well, true. Neither am I. I hard a hard time searching and qualifying them. As for creationism being a dead-end, well, it's your opinion. Can't say much about that. But I can see that you do have a more positive view about God, not like some evolutionists who dismiss God totally. Well, that's good (in my sense).
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    Ok. Finally back to the issue of quick fossilization thing.

    After searching google.com, I have admit there isn't any published scientific paper on "Quick Fossilization" or something similar. But that doesn't mean it doesn't exist. It just mean there is a pretty good chance there isn't such a paper. Just a disclaimer anyway.

    The only one (not a paper) I found related to this is
    http://www.bible.ca/tracks/rapid-fossils.htm

    It gives some pictures and cases of rapid formation with supporting quotes from textbooks. The only thing is that the textbook is published around at 1950. Not sure if it is still relevant.

    However, there is a term - "quick burial" - often found in fossilization.

    Here's a wiki definition and a short quote of fossil. (Without reference to the "quick burial" term though)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fossil
    In order for an organism to be fossilized, the remains normally need to be covered by sediment as soon as possible.
    Although this does not proof anything, it opens the possibility that the Genesis flood could be a source of mass rapid burial for the animals and plants. So, in a sense, at least this point seems to support (and does not contradict) the creationist's fossil theory.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Just a recap plus a few more points.
    Let me address your points.
    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    - Fossils can form within a very short period of time given the correct factors - pressure, temperature, etc.
    I should be very interested to see the published experiments on this. In particular I should like to know what constitutes 'a very short period of time'. To a geologist, for example, 100,000 years is 'a very short period of time'. Equally, what temperatures and pressures are required to induce this fossilisation process? How likely is it that these conditions would be replicated in flood? (I don't expect you to have an answer to these questions. I rather suspect, though, that the proponents of the theory don't either. I can prove almost anything if I select my evidence.)
    I find it quite plausible that some fossilisation can occur quite rapidly, even on a human, rather than a geological time scale. But all fossilisation is not the same: there are degrees of replacement, preservation and distortion. I find it wholly improbable that the diversity of fossilisation processes we find in the field could be accounted for by a single process instituted at a correct suite of temperatures and pressures.
    Let me reply your post directly. Didn't catch every point you said here. As mentioned in my previous post. I failed to find a paper on that. What probably is more relevant would be quick burial.

    Anyway, the idea that fossilization can happen quickly does not prove Genesis Flood. It only supports it. Even if quick fossilization is scientifically invalidated, the Genesis flood event is still not nullified. It only proves that the flood and fossils are not of the same period. They need other evidences to disprove the flood.

    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    Also, water is one of the possible important agents in the formation of fossils. Got that from the creationism articles.
    This is correct. It is important as a medium to transport chemicals that will replace the preservable parts of the fossilising organism. But water is present in nearly all sediments. It does not require a flood to deliver that water. This is simply not an issue.
    Again, same as above. Yes. water being an important agent does not proof anything. It only supports the flood.

    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    No single direct evidence of transitional fossils observed till now. All species are observed to be in their final forms.
    This is simply untrue. I am feeling a little of the frustration that J felt a few posts back. How can I condense into a few words the overwhelming, incontrovertible evidence for the evolution of species and the huge number of transistional forms? I don't know how to do it, so I'll use an analogy.
    I show you a photograph album of my son, from when he was a baby till he became a young man. You look first at him as a day old child, then celebrating his twenty first birthday.
    "That's not the same person. They are completely different." I insist that it really is the same person.
    "Impossible. There are no transitional forms between this and this." I show you a number of pictures of him as a toddler, his first year in school, riding a bike for the first time.
    "No. There is no evidence that this child here, on the bike, is the same as this one carrying school books. They merely look similar. There are no transitional forms between the two." I show you more photographs, including a sequence when he was eight when I photographed him every week for a year.
    "No. This is still meaningless. You see here he is wearing shorts and a green T-shirt and in the next photograph he has on long trousers and a blue formal shirt. He cannot be the same person. You do not have a photograph of him with long trousers and a green t-shirt. Your sequence is full of missing links. No transitional forms anywhere. I don't believe these are all of the same person."
    End of analogy.
    Well, I have posted my "findings". There are so-called transitional fossils. Actually according to the evolutionists, they are rare, not "huge number" as you have claimed unless we need to go into a definition about what's "huge".

    Your analogy sounds logical but I tend to think that it isn't too accurate. We can easily accept one's claim about a boy identity from a series of photos because we have seen live humans growing up from baby to dying old. So, there is direct observable evidence that we can fall back on.

    For fossils, the species are non-existent and we have never directly observed them in real-life. Moreover, the fossils usually shows only bones and probably some other parts, not the entire organism. Much of the transitional fossils are inferred due to their observed anatomical similarities. One can say these fossils are highly similar and thus have a high chance that one evolved from another, but one can't say it must be that way. There is still a chance, even if small, that there is no evolution happening there.

    Quote Originally Posted by starnamer
    How does one explain the Cambrian Explosion? (a bit out of the context of the flood issue. More about general biological evolution)
    Several points here. The Cambrian Explosion is a little like those stars of stage and screen who become an overnight success .... after working their butts off in their industry for twenty years.
    Complex organisms arose well before the Cambrian but were not recognised because (a) they did not have hard parts that are compartively easy to preserve. (b) they were microscopic in size.
    The actual timing of the Cambrian explosion was probably related to a rapid increase in oxygen content in the atmosphere - this allowed creatures to get bigger - and to the end of a Snowball Earth episode, in which all or most of the planet was ice bound.
    Ok. I don't wish to address your analogy here. Regarding your explanation, I guess alot of it remains to be further analysed and proven. Scientists must come up with hypotheses to explain things. Whether the hypotheses survived is another thing.

    Anyone in favour of ending this debate? We have 2 drained and 1 frustrated people here.
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    Maybe we should consider resuming the discussion after Labor Day...

    There are a lot of different issues being debated here.

    But one should always be exhausted by a good converstation.
    Why do they want us to believe Conspiracy Theories?
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    Quote Originally Posted by j
    Maybe we should consider resuming the discussion after Labor Day...

    There are a lot of different issues being debated here.

    But one should always be exhausted by a good converstation.
    That sounds good. There might be new developments by then. Gives us a chance to recharge ourselves too.
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    Agreed, but to save me googling, when is Labour Day. It's not a holiday celebrated in the UK. (As you may know we Brits are pretty screwed up. We celebrate Thanksgiving on July the fourth. :wink: )
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    Well, I am not a US guy too (Singaporean to be exact) but found it to be the 1st Monday of September which is next Monday. Hopefully I am correct. Anyway, our Labour Day is on 1st of May.
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    I really should have said next week-end, but Labor Day is of such practical and cultural significance I forgot I was posting internationally.

    I also inferred from StarNamer's posts that he was from the U.S [it wasn't just an ethnocentric assumption]. I have been responding to you from a whole set of assumptions that you are probably unaware of.
    Why do they want us to believe Conspiracy Theories?
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    Quote Originally Posted by j
    I really should have said next week-end, but Labor Day is of such practical and cultural significance I forgot I was posting internationally.

    I also inferred from StarNamer's posts that he was from the U.S [it wasn't just an ethnocentric assumption]. I have been responding to you from a whole set of assumptions that you are probably unaware of.
    I am fine with next weekend too.

    Well, just curious, which part of my discussion make you infer that I was from US? I guessed you meant things like Grand Canyon, etc. Anyway, I am just a busybody trying to poke into US affairs.
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    Your arguments are very similar to U.S. activist Christians; and your English is excellent, and, unlike many do, you made no reference to being from England or Australia. I haven't notice many people making reference to being from Ireland or Scotland on this board. I think most Canadian would be familar with Labor Day Week-end.
    Why do they want us to believe Conspiracy Theories?
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    I see. I didn't know I sounded like an activist Christian. In fact, I don't know how they sound like. I am just speaking out what I have learnt and how I roughly felt should be the case. Probably the Singaporean Christians are much the same as activists in US?

    Thanks for your compliments. In Singapore, English is our first language and we follow closely to UK standards since we used to be a UK colony. I have also been giving private tuition these few years on English and other subjects, that's probably where I was "forced" to brush up my language skills. In forums and debates like these, it is better to speak clearly.

    However, in my average daily life, my speech tends to be of lower quality. If you have ever heard of the famous (or infamous) "Singlish" then you will know. It is a mixture of English with Malay, Chinese, dialects, etc. It is a unique culture among Singaporeans to speak Singlish. If you have a chance to visit Singapore, talk to a few locals and you will understand what I meant. :wink:
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    Wow, that sounds like a linguist's dream; here in the 'New World' we have lots of dialects, but they are usually mixtures of European languages. I don't know of any dialects that mix European and Asian around here.

    You don't really sound like a U.S. activist Christian, but your arguments are similar; I think that if I had realized your weren't from around here I would have phrased some of my responses differently.

    I would still disagree with you, though.
    Why do they want us to believe Conspiracy Theories?
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    Yah. I have talked with a few native US chinese before. Even for them, their English is pretty pure and not a mixture of English with Chinese. They weren't able to understand our conversations at times!

    To give you a taste of it. Here's a small website.
    http://www.singlish.com.sg/

    Singapore has 4 main races - Chinese, Malays, Indians and Eurasians - within a very small space. You can imagine the high level of interaction among the races which is partly why things get mixed up. It is not just the language, food, marriages and cultures as well, etc.
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  94. #93  
    j
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    I live in a coastal city in the United States, so I know about cultural blending. God, I love hearing languages I can not even recognize and ordering food I don't know how to pronounce.

    But for some reason, in the US, Asian subcultures seem to remain subcultures rather than becoming part of the main-stream...
    Why do they want us to believe Conspiracy Theories?
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  95. #94  
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    Quote Originally Posted by j
    I live in a coastal city in the United States, so I know about cultural blending. God, I love hearing languages I can not even recognize and ordering food I don't know how to pronounce.

    But for some reason, in the US, Asian subcultures seem to remain subcultures rather than becoming part of the main-stream...
    Sounds like China town in either Boston or NYC.
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    I think it is because the main population is Caucasians right? That's why the effects of the minor population are not that great. For Singapore, Chinese makes up close to 3/4 of the population while Malays comes next, then Indians and Eurasias and others. English is our first language because of historical, globalisation, economical and other political reasons. People tends to speak in their own comfortable languages but since we had to speak English, people starts to mix them up so that we get the best of both worlds.
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  97. #96  
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    Quote Originally Posted by (In)Sanity
    Quote Originally Posted by j
    I live in a coastal city in the United States, so I know about cultural blending. God, I love hearing languages I can not even recognize and ordering food I don't know how to pronounce.

    But for some reason, in the US, Asian subcultures seem to remain subcultures rather than becoming part of the main-stream...
    Sounds like China town in either Boston or NYC.
    So, do the people in Chinatown there speak mixed-up languages too?
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  98. #97  
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    Northeast and Pacific Coast.

    The people in Chinatown [and that is such an old name for the area in most cities that now the residents take pride in it] speak English to me, so I have no idea what the Asian language is like. I do know that Mandarin and Cantonese speakers use English with each other.

    I've lived in a lot of cities in the U.S.; Asian language just doesn't go mainstream. I think the reason is the tonal aspect of Asian languages; I tried to say, 'Yes' once in Chinese, with very embarassing results.
    Why do they want us to believe Conspiracy Theories?
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  99. #98  
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    Quote Originally Posted by j
    Northeast and Pacific Coast.

    The people in Chinatown [and that is such an old name for the area in most cities that now the residents take pride in it] speak English to me, so I have no idea what the Asian language is like. I do know that Mandarin and Cantonese speakers use English with each other.

    I've lived in a lot of cities in the U.S.; Asian language just doesn't go mainstream. I think the reason is the tonal aspect of Asian languages; I tried to say, 'Yes' once in Chinese, with very embarassing results.
    Yup. I think the word Chinatown is becoming a trademark globally.

    I do agree that the Chinese language isn't that easy to learn. Even kids in Singapore tend to prefer learning English to Chinese because of the pronunciation and other difficulties. That's why our government is trying to promote the Chinese language and culture to the Chinese community now. If not, we might soon lose the "roots" (our unique heritage).
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    Anyway, back to this debate here.

    Haven't seen any news about the school debate case. Is it out already?

    Anyway, I have checked out other sites especially this one.
    http://www.evcforum.net

    This one looks pretty authoritative for all evolution and creationism discussion. The discussions there are more heaty than here.

    After glancing at a few threads there, I felt that we might not make much headway trying to debate about evidences since we are not qualified palanteologists, scientists or whatever (as what J had said). That's at least true for me as a mere IT engineer. I am not sure about the rest of you here.
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  101. #100  
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    Maybe I will just add a few more points to Ophiolite's photography analogy.

    If one really wants to be serious about confirming the child's identity from the various "transitional" photos, probably we need to employ investigation techniques like forensic science. Probably tests like:
    - Checking whether the photos were authentic and not engineered
    - Double check by calling the kid for visual confirmation
    - Go through medical, historical records of the family to see if the kid in 1 photo really is the same as in other photos.
    - Check with people that knows you, your family or the kid.
    - Many other possible tests.

    Do you see what I mean? If one were to bring a series of photos into court and claim that they all belong to the same person, the court isn't going to take his words by face value, even if that person is the child of the other.

    Most people go by trust that the person with the photos are talking truth especially if he happens to be the father of the kid in the photo. Its like saying, "Since you are his father, I will take your word for it."

    So, that's why I said the analogy isn't that accurate enough scientifically. The same goes for evolutionist (or even creationist) claims about evidences they have. They must be put to stringent tests and peer-reviewed and corroborated with as many sources and sciences as possible before they can safely make strong conclusions about the evidences.

    I think both evolutionist and creationist have their fair share of inadequacies in this area.
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