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  1. #1 this guy on this bus 
    Forum Freshman B1AZE's Avatar
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    this cool chinese guy from old skwl always use to preech about gods good doing and how everything i do is an act of god,and if i prey from my heart etc ,what i dont understand is how people can believe such stuff allll the time,like yeh i have loads of members of my family who go to church all the time and sing all these cheesy songs and stuff,but i dont act like i dissapprove this of course,i appreicate the good-doing way of life,but is this because the way people were brought up..way the brain is wired up or something,because from day 1 i think i was all anti god and shit,even tho i do believe in something that we cant even imagine of..uno


    We spend most of our lifes not knowing..
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    People believe whatever they want to believe. Take the red pill...


    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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    Forum Freshman B1AZE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 425 Chaotic Requisition
    People believe whatever they want to believe. Take the red pill...
    whats the red pill..
    We spend most of our lifes not knowing..
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    The idea that there is someone in the sky protecting you and guiding you is pleasant. Humans develop such strong bonds with each other that it is nice to think that when a friend dies, he lives on in heaven or as a spirit, etc. Even Neanderthals buried their dead, so it can be presumed that they had some interest in the afterlife.

    Also religious stories and writing help explain phenomenon that couldn't be explained at the time. When someone saw a rainbow, maybe he would think that was God smiling and that would become a part of the religion. Of course now, we know what causes a rainbow. This is partly why religion is falling out of favor.

    This is really a tough question. I think a lot of people today have been taught that religion is completely true and that rejection of religion is wrong so they just remain happy and ignorant. Some people would argue that happy and ignorant is good though, so who knows.
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    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by B1AZE
    Quote Originally Posted by 425 Chaotic Requisition
    People believe whatever they want to believe. Take the red pill...
    whats the red pill..
    It is a reference to the film, "The Matrix", where Neo is given a choice between the blue pill which will put him to sleep so they can put him back in his apartment where he can continue his life with his delusions intact, or to take the red pill which will bring all these delusions crashing down so that he can discover the truth no matter how horrible that truth might be.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Quote Originally Posted by B1AZE
    Quote Originally Posted by 425 Chaotic Requisition
    People believe whatever they want to believe. Take the red pill...
    whats the red pill..
    It is a reference to the film, "The Matrix", where Neo is given a choice between the blue pill which will put him to sleep so they can put him back in his apartment where he can continue his life with his delusions intact, or to take the red pill which will bring all these delusions crashing down so that he can discover the truth no matter how horrible that truth might be.
    Here ya go: Matrix: The Pill

    The red pill is not for everyone... but that's a whole other topic.
    Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself. -Spoon Boy
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    Quote Originally Posted by rancidchickn
    The idea that there is someone in the sky protecting you and guiding you is pleasant. Humans develop such strong bonds with each other that it is nice to think that when a friend dies, he lives on in heaven or as a spirit, etc. Even Neanderthals buried their dead, so it can be presumed that they had some interest in the afterlife.

    Also religious stories and writing help explain phenomenon that couldn't be explained at the time. When someone saw a rainbow, maybe he would think that was God smiling and that would become a part of the religion. Of course now, we know what causes a rainbow. This is partly why religion is falling out of favor.

    This is really a tough question. I think a lot of people today have been taught that religion is completely true and that rejection of religion is wrong so they just remain happy and ignorant. Some people would argue that happy and ignorant is good though, so who knows.
    alternatively a certain class of person also finds comfort in the notion of nonexistence.

    and as for literature that stretches the gaps in our knowledge with fiction, thats simply a weakness that permeates all disciplines of knowledge, including science (although discussing this with a person who has been taught that empiricism is completely true can be difficult, since it seems to infringe on their sense of happiness)

    /shrugs
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    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaBOB
    Here ya go: Matrix: The Pill

    The red pill is not for everyone... but that's a whole other topic.
    The truth is that there are no such pills just as there are no magical fruits that impart knowledge or eternal life. So you can be pretty confident that all the red pill salesmen out there are cannot give you what they claim no matter how good their rhetoric and no matter how much they believe in their own product.

    The truth is not only something you must discover for yourself but this search is one of the great adventures of life and it is a shame to let someone else take that away from you by letting them do your thinking for you.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

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  10. #9  
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Quote Originally Posted by DaBOB
    Here ya go: Matrix: The Pill

    The red pill is not for everyone... but that's a whole other topic.
    The truth is that there are no such pills just as there are no magical fruits that impart knowledge or eternal life..
    Don't say that unless you intend to prove it.
    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 425 Chaotic Requisition
    Don't say that unless you intend to prove it.
    Hey, I've got just as much of a right to sell my "red pill" as anybody else.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain


    The truth is not only something you must discover for yourself but this search is one of the great adventures of life and it is a shame to let someone else take that away from you by letting them do your thinking for you.
    But mckain i thought you liked to do everyones thinking for them?

    You are the master of presumption and speculation

    Why contradict yourself and stop now?
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    shit that pill gave me comedown lol
    We spend most of our lifes not knowing..
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    But mckain i thought you liked to do everyones thinking for them?

    You are the master of presumption and speculation

    Why contradict yourself and stop now?
    Ahhhh! A great opportunity presents itself to you. Will you choose the realization that reality is not quite what you thought it was? Or will you choose the comfortable path of reaffirming all of your presumptions?

    You are like Neo at the beginning of the movie.

    Which pill will YOU take? The bitter one or the sweet?
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    I ain't seen no stinking red pill and never took no stinkin red pill.

    Therefore, they do not exist.

    One pill makes you larger
    And one pill makes you small
    And the ones that mother gives you
    Don't do anything at all
    Go ask Alice
    When she's ten feet tall

    -- Jefferson Airplane, circa 1965

    As you can see, there are no red pills.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    But mckain i thought you liked to do everyones thinking for them?

    You are the master of presumption and speculation

    Why contradict yourself and stop now?
    Ahhhh! A great opportunity presents itself to you. Will you choose the realization that reality is not quite what you thought it was? Or will you choose the comfortable path of reaffirming all of your presumptions?

    You are like Neo at the beginning of the movie.

    Which pill will YOU take? The bitter one or the sweet?
    Neither

    But i think you should take both and insert them up your bum

    It might cure your anal posts
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  17. #16  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene

    Neither

    But i think you should take both and insert them up your bum

    It might cure your anal posts
    Haha bit of psychology there?
    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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  18. #17  
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    This is entertaining to say the least.

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    The truth is not only something you must discover for yourself but this search is one of the great adventures of life and it is a shame to let someone else take that away from you by letting them do your thinking for you.
    Agreed!

    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    But mckain i thought you liked to do everyones thinking for them?

    You are the master of presumption and speculation

    Why contradict yourself and stop now?
    Many people have this fear of contradiction. As though they should be embarrassed by it. When in fact it shows an extension of freedom. In this case it doesn't seem so much a contradiction however. What was the saying...

    "Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds." -Einstein

    The thing I love about this quote is that, depending on how you look at it, either side can seem arrogant. Maybe, to a degree, we all are.
    ...but what does this have to do with anything? :?

    Why is my font different all of the sudden???? Everything is small...
    Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself. -Spoon Boy
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaBOB
    This is entertaining to say the least.

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    The truth is not only something you must discover for yourself but this search is one of the great adventures of life and it is a shame to let someone else take that away from you by letting them do your thinking for you.
    Agreed!

    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    But mckain i thought you liked to do everyones thinking for them?

    You are the master of presumption and speculation

    Why contradict yourself and stop now?
    Many people have this fear of contradiction. As though they should be embarrassed by it. When in fact it shows an extension of freedom. In this case it doesn't seem so much a contradiction however. What was the saying...

    "Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds." -Einstein

    The thing I love about this quote is that, depending on how you look at it, either side can seem arrogant. Maybe, to a degree, we all are.
    ...but what does this have to do with anything? :?

    Why is my font different all of the sudden???? Everything is small...
    What a load of nonsensical waffle!
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    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    But mckain i thought you liked to do everyones thinking for them?

    You are the master of presumption and speculation

    Why contradict yourself and stop now?
    Ahhhh! A great opportunity presents itself to you. Will you choose the realization that reality is not quite what you thought it was? Or will you choose the comfortable path of reaffirming all of your presumptions?

    You are like Neo at the beginning of the movie.

    Which pill will YOU take? The bitter one or the sweet?
    Neither


    The red pill represents the unpleasant truth, so a refusal to take this pill represents a will to maintain your delusions. Your posts suggests that the delusions you choose to maintain appears to include one of not having to make unpleasant choices. Back to the film, what do you suppose they would have done if Neo refused to take either pill? What choice would they have had but to shoot him or conk him on the head?



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    But i think you should take both and insert them up your bum
    Interesting choice of words. In the film, the traitor also suggested that Morpheus should do something similar with his pills too. Does this suggest that there is a class of people who has this sort of response to the realities of life? That instead of facing their existential responsibility they just shout back at life that it can take its pills and shove them? Are these people so addicted to their comfort, that no matter how much of a lie it may be, that they would respond to any offer of truth with murder, just so they don't have to face the dillemna of choosing truth or comfort? Could this be how people become evil? Scott Peck seems to think so in "People of the Lie".



    Quote Originally Posted by Selene
    It might cure your anal posts
    Selene calls my posts anal. I wonder what difference between our posts is being perceived? It cannot simply be that my posts are unpleasant, for that is certainly not a difference between us. Selene's post are at least as unpleasant as mine.

    Then there is a possible reference to the term "anal retentive".

    Quote Originally Posted by Wikipedia
    Conversationally, the term is often used to describe a person deemed to be overly obsessed with minor details. Its roots are said to be from the theories of Sigmund Freud.

    The term is often used in a colloquial, derogatory sense to describe a person with such attention to detail that the obsession becomes an annoyance to others...
    Now I can certainly understand where this can be quite obnoxious in some types of conversation. I certainly would not dream of talking like I write in a family or social setting. But in a discussion forum are we really going to uphold the shallow expression of opinions without foundation as the standard to be admired? Is it not the details and complexities of life that we are seeking to understand? Are we really going to admire the rhetoric of the ideologue with their nickle slogans to railroad us with their oversimplifications of reality? Of course not.

    So since the above definition of "anal rentive" would practically be a compliment in this setting, I must guess that this cannot be what Selene intends. Well I do have one final guess. Could the difference that Selene is lamenting simply be the one between name calling and rational argument - and thus the difference between childishness and maturity?
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    Or could it be that this thread has gone down the crapper?
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
    "All people know the same truth. Our lives consist of how we chose to distort it." - Harry Block
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  22. #21  
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    Hmmmm. I see Kalster's signature says:
    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
    I do note that Carl Sagan is deceased.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER
    Or could it be that this thread has gone down the crapper?
    So Kalister sees himself as thescienceforum censor to tell us which threads have pursued an acceptable line of discussion.

    Do we really need such censorship and is Kalister the one we want for such a role?

    I would suggest that if Kalister has a thought about something in this thread that should be disagreed with, then Kalister should come out and present an argument instead of acting like a judge with a final say. Pah!

    What is there in this thread that is worth pursuing? I thought the imagery from the movie, "The Matrix" is an excellent basis for the discussion of religion - even religion in the context of a scientific reality. Why does not Kalister simply uplift the discussion with those pearls of wisdom I know Kalister has there somewhere?



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Hmmmm. I see Kalster's signature says:
    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
    I do note that Carl Sagan is deceased.
    Going through "The Truth Project" I have seen some of the adverse opinions that conservative Christians have for him. Is this an expression of that sort of sentiment? Surely you are not arguing that what Carl Sagan said implies that he himself was gullible - surely you see the logical fallacy in that?
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  24. #23  
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    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER
    Or could it be that this thread has gone down the crapper?
    Aye

    quick somebody pull the flusher i need to take a pee and i don't want splash backs!
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  25. #24  
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    Mitchell asked:

    Surely you are not arguing that what Carl Sagan said implies that he himself was gullible - surely you see the logical fallacy in that?
    It was only that it recalled to me Prov: 26:27 -- "Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein. . ."

    I would not expect Sagan to have been consciously referring to himself, although I see a great irony in the statement. The truth is that Sagan is definitely deceased. I have no idea as to whether gullibility concerning a lifestyle decision played a role in his physical demise. However, from my perspective, his acceptance of knowledge as his god and scientific method as his savior do not bode well for his place in the afterlife.

    I was also reminded of the old cartoon which shows a wall of grafitti. There is a line which says: "God is dead -- signed: Nitschke." Beneath that is scrawled, "Nitschke is dead -- signed: God."
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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  26. #25  
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    Calm down guys, it was only a comment ....judge with a final say? Pah! I do not presume myself qualified as a judge, however I can comment from my own perspective if I so wish.

    Dayton; Poor attempt!

    I agree that the matrix parable works, in that it shows the kind of mental barrier put up by ignorant theists and atheists alike. It is a phenomenon common in people of all types (including atheists), relating to a variety of concepts. This is the religion forum though, so that is what I will comment on. It has to be said, though, that I have no firsthand experience of (self proclaimed) atheists. It is limited to this forum, some books I have read and a few comments on various websites.

    It is difficult to really hold someone accountable for not being able to see other viewpoints. In my experience, the way of processing the world employed by either group, in most cases, differ wildly. This makes it virtually impossible in many cases for either group to even be capable of comprehending each others’ viewpoints. So what can qualify as a boni fide red pill for either side?

    As for me, as an atheist, I actually have been part of the theist crowd and bought into everything, as well as felt what you felt. Some other atheists though have not and so speak with an air of ridicule at all times without really understanding the mind of the theist. The same goes for theists. Theists are the vast majority and due to that fact are guilty of more instances of active ridicule, disdain and segregation of atheists and the opposing religious in modern society. Can we agree on that?
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    However, from my perspective, his acceptance of knowledge as his god and scientific method as his savior do not bode well for his place in the afterlife.
    I don't know. Science seems like a better a better god than the vindictive tryrant that many Christians seem to have. I expect that Sagan is encountering no more than he expected - a last unpleasant dream on his deathbed perhaps?



    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER
    It is difficult to really hold someone accountable for not being able to see other viewpoints. In my experience, the way of processing the world employed by either group, in most cases, differ wildly. This makes it virtually impossible in many cases for either group to even be capable of comprehending each others’ viewpoints. So what can qualify as a boni fide red pill for either side?
    Ah now that is an excellent comment! You exceed my expectations.



    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER
    As for me, as an atheist, I actually have been part of the theist crowd and bought into everything, as well as felt what you felt. Some other atheists though have not and so speak with an air of ridicule at all times without really understanding the mind of the theist.
    Ahhh... now it has been pointed out to me that any claim by a theist to have been in the position of an atheist before becoming Christian must be fallacious. And thus I think we can only agree that the diversity of human thought being what it is, no human being can truthfully claim to have been in the same position as another.

    I get your point, but although your consideration has some merit, it is flawed by the fact of this same diversity, for not everyone changes their point of view while retaining some sympathy those retaining the "viewpoint they have discarded". Consider Selenes case. I have my doubts that she ever shared the view of the other Christians she knew concerning the use of childhood indoctrination. As a result she can only hold these, which she now believes to be representative and typical of all Christians, in complete contempt. Thus there is in both Selene's thinking and yours this rather obviously fallacious presumption that different people aligning themselves with a particular group are really in any way similar.



    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER
    The same goes for theists. Theists are the vast majority and due to that fact are guilty of more instances of active ridicule, disdain and segregation of atheists and the opposing religious in modern society. Can we agree on that?
    Hmmm.... It depends on what you mean. When a group is a vast majority even the most passive and benign sort of presumption can be oppressive. Then there is the fact that there are those type of people who will like chameleons hide themselves in the biggest crowd available as a cover under which to hide their inhumanity. And there is also, I think, a tendency in human beings for the comfort of the crowd to bring out the worst in human beings (like a mob mentality), whereby people justify a bit of inhumanity as if the opinions of the crowd is the only grasp they have of what is right. This is why I have said repeatedly that the real freedom and salvation of mankind depends on the encouragement and preservation of diversity.

    But of course all this implies that an atheist majority would be no better, and the answer again must be found in a passionate defense of religious freedom (including freedom from religion and the freedom to pursue a lifestyle reflecting ones beliefs and preferences, provided this does not include the infringement of the rights of others), tolerance and secular control of the governmental power of violence used exclusively to defend the rights of the individual.
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  28. #27  
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    KALSTER wrote:

    As for me, as an atheist, I actually have been part of the theist crowd and bought into everything, as well as felt what you felt. Some other atheists though have not and so speak with an air of ridicule at all times without really understanding the mind of the theist. The same goes for theists. Theists are the vast majority and due to that fact are guilty of more instances of active ridicule, disdain and segregation of atheists and the opposing religious in modern society. Can we agree on that?
    Well, only to the extent that you can agree that my disregard for Carl Sagan and his ilk follows having watched the original Cosmos series in first run back in the 70's and actually being big into the Cosmos crowd, buying into virtually every word Sagan uttered

    Thus if your disdain for religion is valid based on your former acceptance and association with that movement, I would think you should afford me the same opportunity to validate my similar disdain for scientism based on the opposite ideological switch.

    I agree that atheists who have never been believers (and that would likely be most of them) have no idea what we (Christians) have experienced that makes us believers. But I would even extend that to apostate Christians who I doubt ever actually had that experience. I am not aware of believers who have never been non-believers although some may have become believers at an age so young that they do not quite recall their non-believing days.

    It is a problem when Christians forget from whence they came and who do not remember that they had the very same thoughts and beliefs and defiance that atheists express and exhibit.

    I have not seen much written here that does not reflect my former attitude as an avowed agnostic. I could never claim to have been an absolute atheist, but I was definitely an antagonistic, if not outspoken, agnostic scoffer.

    I had all the same arguments that the atheists and agnostics present here: All religions are, ultimately, alike. There is no such thing as sin. There are no absolutes. Religion is the safe haven of the weak. I see no evidence of God. The Bible is a collection of mythical stories written by ancient superstitious people. If there was a God, the world would be vastly different. I can make my own determination of what is right and what is wrong. Christians are really just hypocrites.

    So when people throw those silly justifications for non-belief at me, I've been there, done that.

    I did not come to some intellectual determination that God makes more sense than no-god. I don't think becoming a Christian has anything to do with an intellectual conclusion. It deals with something much deeper, the very core of one's personhood causing, so to speak, a change of heart. It is as though, on one side of that change of heart, I was intellectually unreceptive to anything about God, while on the other side, I was receptive. I have never had a strong feeling that I chose God. Rather, it seemed that he chose me in spite of my defiance. I do not recall any intellectual interaction at the time. It was merely that in one instant I did not believe; in the next instant I did.

    For the most part, I am not convinced people who claim to be apostate Christians were ever actually receptive to the things of God and, having not received them, left the association of Christian fellowship.

    I am not sure what KALSTER means when he says that because theists are the vast majority, they are guilty of more . . . Is it not true that just about any minority group feels persecuted by the majority? And this feeling remains even when the majority bends over backwards trying to accommodate the minority.

    If as Christians, we are “guilty” of anything, it is of trying to warn non-believers of the consequences of ignoring God. If they feel ridiculed, disdained and segregated, that is usually more their reaction than our action. Although,
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    Dayton, let me first say that I don't see Carl Sagan, Dawkins or anyone else as my hero or sole dispenser of wisdom . I would love to see the Cosmos series. I love the movie Contact, as well as his book A Demon Haunted World (where I got my quote) and some of his other fiction and non-fiction.

    Thus if your disdain for religion
    Are you presuming this based on my atheism? That is fallacious. I have disdain for intellectually and generally dishonest people, which would include (I think) a big chunk of self proclaimed believers and some atheists I have come across (and politicians :x ).

    But I would even extend that to apostate Christians who I doubt ever actually had that experience.
    This same argument is used by some atheists from their perspective. Both are rather presumptuous.

    I did not come to some intellectual determination that God makes more sense than no-god. I don't think becoming a Christian has anything to do with an intellectual conclusion. It deals with something much deeper, the very core of one's personhood causing, so to speak, a change of heart.
    This is a major difference, in most cases, between the origin of the views of the atheist and the theist. Mostly emotional vs. mostly intellectual. While both parties can have a sort of inner-core connection with nature and its grandness, it is the connection to this god figure that is quite distinct. And yes, I felt that too. I remember the peace I felt knowing that God was there. It was a very personal, indescribable connection to a totally loving, benevolent, compassionate, protective, infinitely superior being that gave me strength and an “inner glow” each day. It was an honour and a privilege to be subject and loyal to such a being.

    I am not sure what KALSTER means when he says that because theists are the vast majority, they are guilty of more
    Well, for the most part, it is simply a matter of numbers. Among many people I know, black people are regarded as inferior, simple minded, uneducated, thieves, murderers, rapists, etc. But in South Africa, black people outnumber whites by at least 5 to 1 and are percentage wise much poorer. So of course there would (by numbers) be more of each!

    If they feel ridiculed, disdained and segregated, that is usually more their reaction than our action.
    That is not my experience at all.

    Then there is the fact that there are those type of people who will like chameleons hide themselves in the biggest crowd available as a cover under which to hide their inhumanity. And there is also, I think, a tendency in human beings for the comfort of the crowd to bring out the worst in human beings (like a mob mentality), whereby people justify a bit of inhumanity as if the opinions of the crowd is the only grasp they have of what is right. This is why I have said repeatedly that the real freedom and salvation of mankind depends on the encouragement and preservation of diversity.
    Agreed.

    But of course all this implies that an atheist majority would be no better, and the answer again must be found in a passionate defense of religious freedom (including freedom from religion and the freedom to pursue a lifestyle reflecting ones beliefs and preferences, provided this does not include the infringement of the rights of others) , tolerance and secular control of the governmental power of violence to defend the rights of the individual.
    Agreed again, except that I would aim for a society where a more scientific way of thinking is encouraged. That would get rid of ignorance in regards to how the world around them as well as the people around them work. The thing is that I am sure that such a society might eventually have the kind of percentages of atheists that is true of theists today.

    Thus there is in both Selene's thinking and yours this rather obviously fallacious presumption that different people aligning themselves with a particular group are really in any way similar.
    I don’t think that it is presumptuous to think that they are in some way similar?

    And thus I think we can only agree that the diversity of human thought being what it is, no human being can truthfully claim to have been in the same position as another.
    Yes, I agree that nobody can be in the exact position as another, but I certainly think that they can experience aspects of their encompassing beliefs/etc. in closely similar ways.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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    Since KALSTER has brought up the movie “Contact” from a book written by Carl Sagan, it is open for some discussion.

    For those who might not be familiar with the movie, here is a summation of part of it:

    Ellie Arroway, played by Jodie Foster, is an agnostic astronomer working with the SETI (Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence) project where they listen to radio signals from outer space hoping to hear from someone. One night as she listens, she hears a series of audio impulses from deep space marking each prime number between one and 100 and recognizes this as a clear sign of intelligence. “It’s not random,” she understates.

    This transmission is followed by a second transmission of the image and audio of the 1936 Olympics which occurred 52 years before. Thus they calculate that the message is being returned by Vegans who are some 26 light years away. Further analysis of the Olympic replay transmission shows it is imbedded with pages and pages of symbols. When the code to the symbols is solved, they discover it is plans to a one-person transporter.

    While Ellie is unconvinced of God’s existence, she is convinced about the existence of the extraterrestrials. Why?

    Well, at one point she is questioned about her belief in the existence of God and she says to the effect that as a scientist, she relies only on “empirical evidence.” She points out that there is no data either way. Why, she suggests, should she believe in a God that created everything and then left no evidence. “I need proof,” she concludes. (Aside: this is a very common position of atheists and agnostics.)

    So, regarding ETs, Ellie has all the evidence she needs: a blueprint of a spaceship. She finds a blueprint and infers intelligence from it.

    If she were to apply this same type of epistomology to the question of God, she would have her answer. Every cell in her body, as do all the cells of everyone posting on the forum, carries within it a detailed blueprint far more complex than the one her space transport was made from.

    Imbedded within our double helix DNA is a code that is so incredibly complex that I am not sure anyone knows the full extent of it or how many thousands of pages of paper would be required to print it out completely.

    And even if we could completely play out this blueprint of a human being, could we construct one from the plan? (You, no doubt, see where I am going with this.) The human is no more the result of an accident than Ellie’s space transporter. It is a detailed plan carefully laid out by an intelligent mind. If a plan for a space transporter is indicative of intelligence, an even more complex plan for the even more complex human being should indicate the presence of God.

    It is beyond my comprehension that people, as represented by Ellie who is expressing Sagan’s beliefs, can see the need for a designer when it comes to the simplest of machines but still believe the universe and all of its complexity and the complexity of even one-celled life forms are random accidents. It is as though anything which can be comprehended is of human origin while anything beyond comprehension is an accident.

    There is an extent to which I feel sorry for those who bastardize themselves in believing they are accidents like illegitimate children of nature. The evidence that we are not accidents is there in the complexity of the design.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
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    Well, I am wondering how you can NOT see the difference? We pretty much have a good understanding of the basics of life and thus far (as far as I know) nothing has been found that explicitly required the existence of a concious actuator. That is, we can satisfactorily in principle explain how everything happened on its own. On the other hand, it is difficult to imagine something like a ford gto being produced as a matter of consequence by a non-sentient being. The plain difference between a ford gto and a human is the level of complexity. So from this it should be quite easy to distinguish between something natural and man (or intelligence) made, at least with our current level of technology. So to recap, and funnily enough , we mostly know how nature can operate in its great complexity without the nead for a god, but we have no reasonable concept of how a ford gto in its simplicity could come to be on its own.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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  32. #31  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    It is beyond my comprehension that people, as represented by Ellie who is expressing Sagan’s beliefs, can see the need for a designer when it comes to the simplest of machines but still believe the universe and all of its complexity and the complexity of even one-celled life forms are random accidents. It is as though anything which can be comprehended is of human origin while anything beyond comprehension is an accident.

    There is an extent to which I feel sorry for those who bastardize themselves in believing they are accidents like illegitimate children of nature. The evidence that we are not accidents is there in the complexity of the design.
    Well I think the key word here that points out your failure and the poverty of your viewpoint is "machines". The evolutionist prefers to be a monkey and you prefer to be a robot. Thus the sad thing about your exaggerated characterature of evolution is that there is not even a need to exaggerate your view to make it repulsive, you do that all by yourself. You have to make the monkey out to be a random coalescence of chemicals in order to make it sound anywhere near as repulsive as your view of man as a robot.

    What is wrong with both extreme views is this treatment of living things as inanimate objects no different from dead things, both of which come into being by things acting upon them rather than as something which they are a part of. Thus I would most definitely prefer to be a monkey, because at least a monkey is alive. But many religious seem to prefer to think of themselves as things which are not alive, like insensate clay in the hands of a potter.

    I think there is one small fact that punches a hole in both of these idiotic theories: DNA repair mechanisms are so efficient that bacteria have to have a specially designed molecule to cover selected portions of radiation damage and protect that damage from their own DNA repair mechanism just so that mutations can occur. Evolution is a reality but it is not something done to living things or something that happens by accident but something that living things do quite intentionally because evolution is nothing more that the learning process which all living things are capable of.

    Furthermore, although I prefer the monkey to the robot, I do not think of myself as a monkey, because the 98.3% similarity of my genetic code to that of a chimp only points to a biological inheritance and a similarity to my body and I am not my body, for I believe that the human mind is a living organism in its own right, which is not a biological organism and thus inherits nothing (directly) from the monkey at all. Instead the unity and interdependence of mind and body is like how all living are woven together is an intricate web of interdependencies as a single organism so that by damaging parts of it or poisoning it, we damage and poison ourselves.



    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER
    Well, I am wondering how you can NOT see the difference? We pretty much have a good understanding of the basics of life and thus far (as far as I know) nothing has been found that explicitly required the existence of a concious actuator. ...but we have no reasonable concept of how a ford gto in its simplicity could come to be on its own.
    Yes, but the most fundamental difference here which everyone continues to ignore is that one alive an the other is a machine. The machine is a product of design and the living thing is a product of growth, devolopment, and learning. Thus while the machine has a designer, what living things have are caretakers, teachers and parents. Just because living things can grow and learn does not mean that they did so without help.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

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    KALSTER is correct in a sense.

    Many believers do not see a difference. What we see is that the more complex the system, the greater the intelligence that is required to design and develop it.

    We do not see six-year old children designing rocket ships. People who design rockets ships probably started with paper airplanes when they six. Then, as they gained knowledge and intelligence, they were able to design more and more complex machines.

    Mitchell suggests there is a difference between the living and the inanimate. Duhhhhhh.

    The living is far more complex than the inanimate. It does not occur to me that only the inanimate can be the result of design. The Universe, in and of itself, is inanimate, so does that mean it was designed or the result of some inanimate series of occurances?

    Self preservation mechanisms are far more complex than computer diagnostics. And, generally, more successful. Logic still tells me that the more complex the system, the greater the need for planned design.

    To attribute the magnificence of these life form designs to random chance is to demean them as accidents. To attribute them to a thoughtful designer gives them meaning and purpose.

    I can understand the idea that a human designer can only design inanimate objects but is limited to merely making minor alterations to living objects. But we have a designer who was able to design people who are not robots.

    I find it strange that a believer would think being created by God would make humans more nearly like inanimate robots than like the other living creations of God. If God did not specifically design us, there is no need to believe in him.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Many believers do not see a difference. What we see is that the more complex the system, the greater the intelligence that is required to design and develop it.

    We do not see six-year old children designing rocket ships. People who design rockets ships probably started with paper airplanes when they six. Then, as they gained knowledge and intelligence, they were able to design more and more complex machines.
    Oh I understand that you think you are the better robot made by the better engineering company and thus with a better design. But I don't care how proudly you brag of your brand name, I know the truth that I am acutally pathetic by comparison to all your fancy features, but I am still better, because I am not a robot at all. I am alive.

    Back to the movie, "The Matrix", it is like the difference between the human being and agents. One is alive and one is designed. The agent may look human and have no metallic parts, but being designed it is still inherently limited by this design and can be no more than it was designed to be. But like a baby who is helpless and can do nothing, the human being, even if though they seem like less, they are really more because they are alive. To be alive is to be capable through the process of growth and learning of always becoming more than they are, and this gives them an infinite potential and thus a value that will always transcend the the value of those that are designed.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    The living is far more complex than the inanimate. It does not occur to me that only the inanimate can be the result of design. The Universe, in and of itself, is inanimate, so does that mean it was designed or the result of some inanimate series of occurances?
    Yes this is the problem. You reduce life to mere complex design and thus we are the sum total of our capabilities and design features and no more. I does not occur to you how being alive can actually be so more than this, and this is why your view of creation is as contemptable to me as the view of the mechachanistic materialist who sees everything as the product of random events and mechanical laws.

    The universe was not designed in the fashion of a sculpture but was instead designed to change according to mathematical laws with basic limitations that allowed an interaction with spirit, thus allowing the action of God and also giving the universe a potential for life, which arises from an interaction between the physical and the spiritual. It arises spontaneously but only when the proper conditions are carefully prepared. That is the nature of living things. And after they have begun to learn and pass on information then an inheritance is also a part of the nature of living things.

    But this nature to learn makes teaching also a natural part of what it means to be alive and thus this mean that to bring out the full potential of life, what is needed is a relationship with a teacher. Thus while you as a robot only require a better designer, I as a living organism require a relationship with a better teacher. While your creation is done, mine never ends, this is the difference between the process of design and the process of life. In place of a relationship, all you have is your designer going back to fix some of the flaws in his design. No wonder the atheists cannot believe in this poor designer that you call God.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Self preservation mechanisms are far more complex than computer diagnostics. And, generally, more successful. Logic still tells me that the more complex the system, the greater the need for planned design.
    But complex design on the part of God is actually quite an effortless and trivial thing for Him. Perhaps we human designers can be proud of a particularly complex design for such things are product of considerable hard work. But for an infinitely powerful and knowledgeble God such complexity is transparent, and thus in the end, no matter how complex it is, a tool is just a tool and the value of it is no more than its ability to fulfull the purpose for which it was designed. This may indeed be true of the angels for they fit the profile. They at least appear to be useful tools. But what in the world could be the purpose of the creatures on this planet by comparison to these?

    What a wonderful design feature God came up with in disease. I suppose this would make sense if this world was God's little S&M hideaway. And if diseases don't produce enough suffering for God to delight in, He can always send a few tornadoes and droughts to keep things "interesting". This is the problem with creation only by design, the responsibility for everything that is the result can only be the designer's, whether incompetent because these things are a mistake or evil because they are intentional, it hardly makes a belief in God very palatable. But all this changes when you throw out this insipid idea of design.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    To attribute the magnificence of these life form designs to random chance is to demean them as accidents. To attribute them to a thoughtful designer gives them meaning and purpose.
    Yes these are the two extreme views which are equally stupid. To say that it must be one or the other is like saying the tomatoes in the grocery store must either come from a factory or from a chance collision of chemicals. The design proproponent says, "look and the intricate design, this is obviously the work of a superior engineering firm". The materialist says, "all I see is a pile of tomatoes, so they obviously must have a appeared out of thin air." They both refuse to see the truth that these tomatoes are the product of living organisms. Yes they grew and were not designed, but they did not do so without help.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I can understand the idea that a human designer can only design inanimate objects but is limited to merely making minor alterations to living objects. But we have a designer who was able to design people who are not robots.
    WRONG. We can design all sorts of things which are animate. That is exactly what robots are, animated machines. We even have animated pictures. All of these things are a product of design and none them is alive or ever will be. It is the nature of living things to learn and grow from nothing - and this is quite the opposite of the design process.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I find it strange that a believer would think being created by God would make humans more nearly like inanimate robots than like the other living creations of God.
    Exactly! We are like the other living things and not at all like golems of dust and flesh made either by magic or design. We are made as all living things are made by growth and learning in a relationship to an environment that includes farmers, shepherds, teachers and parents. The believer also knows that the greatest of these is God. The difference between us is not the belief in creation but the belief in design, for I simply do not believe that living things can be created by design for that is contrary to their nature - it contradicts what it means to be alive. Therefore living things are only created by relationship not design.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    If God did not specifically design us, there is no need to believe in him.
    WRONG. There is not only the design in the universe itself that makes life possible, but there is the very real need of living things for a caretaker and teacher. Life without God is a lot like the difference between parenting and the story of Frankenstein - it is the difference that love makes in transforming an act (the creation of life) that is basically evil into something that is precious and wonderful.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

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    Well, Mitchell, we definitely have a different opinion of something about which we can only guess and speculate.

    It seems in this thread you are presenting the picture of a God who set the ball rolling and has subsequently sat back and watched as his plan unfolded. This seems to be more of an impersonal God approach than you have expressed sometimes before.

    What we disagree on is the degree and extent of God's direct hand on creation vis a vis the natural results of the laws of nature which He designed and set in motion.

    One thing -- you are using a different sense of animation than I was. I was using animated in the sense of living not in the sense of life-like motion. You are talking about simulated life and I was talking about really alive things.

    Whether man is ever able to duplicate living tissue is only a question that time will tell. However, that would only show that some intelligent being is required to embue non-living material with life. It would not go far in showing macroevolution.

    The minor points of how and how much God created are not really what I feel comfortable discussing. My point was not that God brought forth each animal according to its kind, as the Bible phrases it. My point was that no matter where you step into the creation process, the stamp of God's design is indelibly imprinted in the blueprints of living cells, from the simplest to the most complex. My point was not that because the human is a more complex animal, he had to be designed by God. Rather, I was looking at the individual cells where the blue print for even the simplest of living cells are far more complex and intricately designed than the space ship Ellie built from ETs blueprint.

    In saying that, I am not backtracking from my belief that only microevolution has taken place and that God's creative efforts were broader than merely getting the ball rolling.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

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    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Well, Mitchell, we definitely have a different opinion of something about which we can only guess and speculate.

    It seems in this thread you are presenting the picture of a God who set the ball rolling and has subsequently sat back and watched as his plan unfolded. This seems to be more of an impersonal God approach than you have expressed sometimes before.
    Where in the world do you get THAT from. How many times to I have to REPEAT myself. This is precisely what is wrong with design. Because of this makes creation something that happened long ago, when the actual nature of living things is that their creation through relationship is an ongoing process that NEVER ENDS!



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    What we disagree on is the degree and extent of God's direct hand on creation vis a vis the natural results of the laws of nature which He designed and set in motion.
    Yes indeed you seem to think that God only involved Himself long ago in a once and for all creation - according to the Biblical story, probably, while I see God work of creation as something that never ended, and that therefore that God is no less involved in our lives now than during the time of Adam and Eve.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    One thing -- you are using a different sense of animation than I was. I was using animated in the sense of living not in the sense of life-like motion. You are talking about simulated life and I was talking about really alive things.
    Yes but the question is WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE? You say there IS no difference and I say that there is.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Whether man is ever able to duplicate living tissue is only a question that time will tell. However, that would only show that some intelligent being is required to embue non-living material with life. It would not go far in showing macroevolution.
    It has already been demonstrated but you will never acknowledge it because you demand something something else entirely. In equating evolution to atheism you demand the demonstration that that he origin of life did not require God. Thus you demand the impossible - for human beings to reproduce what evolution took 3 billion years to do in a human lifetime - in fact you have just stated that even this is not enough. Since I believe that God created life, I certainly do not expect that man can reproduce the process in a shorter period of time.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    The minor points of how and how much God created are not really what I feel comfortable discussing. My point was not that God brought forth each animal according to its kind, as the Bible phrases it. My point was that no matter where you step into the creation process, the stamp of God's design is indelibly imprinted in the blueprints of living cells, from the simplest to the most complex. My point was not that because the human is a more complex animal, he had to be designed by God. Rather, I was looking at the individual cells where the blue print for even the simplest of living cells are far more complex and intricately designed than the space ship Ellie built from ETs blueprint.
    But evolution is about how God created NOT whether God created. Science assumes that we can discover how and ID assumes that we cannot. But your cotinued use of the language of design and machines reveals your continued preference to think of yourself as a robot or some other non-living material.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    In saying that, I am not backtracking from my belief that only microevolution has taken place and that God's creative efforts were broader than merely getting the ball rolling.
    It is your insistence that there are only two possible answers is part of your problem.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

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