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If there is no God, why do so many believe? (Page 3)
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Salah al-Din
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:35 PM
 
Originally posted by BoomStick:
How do you know mohammad isn't the false prophet of satan the Bible speaks about?
I take it you can't answer the question so you must resort to this. What a surprise.
     
BoomStick
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:38 PM
 
You are trying to pigeonhole based on your misinterpretation.

I await your answer about the false prophet of satan, mohammad.
     
Shaddim
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:39 PM
 
Originally posted by Salah al-Din:
ummmm, tell me. How is a person placed (lets just say) on the North Pole supposed to see the South Pole of the earth? The verse said Jesus saw all the Kingdoms of the world.
Assume for a second that Jesus is the Son of God, has a great deal of power, etc.. Now, Satan (aka. the Adversary) is also rather powerful... I'd say between the both of them, they could pan over and get a bird's eye view of the kingdoms of the world. Taking Jesus to the top of the mountain was simply for dramatic effect. This would be no big feat for a person who can raise the dead, heal people at a distance, and sense the intent of a person's heart 1000 miles away (not to mention the whole resurrection thing).

Daniel's dream makes no mention of a flat Earth. "behold a tree in the midst of the earth, and the height thereof [was] great"... stick a pencil through an orange, you'll then get part of the visual he's try to portray. It's similar to the midgard references in Nordic lore.
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
- Thomas Paine
     
Salah al-Din
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:47 PM
 
Originally posted by MacNStein:
Assume for a second that Jesus is the Son of God, has a great deal of power, etc.. Now, Satan (aka. the Adversary) is also rather powerful... I'd say between the both of them, they could pan over and get a bird's eye view of the kingdoms of the world. Taking Jesus to the top of the mountain was simply for dramatic effect. This would be no big feat for a person who can raise the dead, heal people at a distance, and sense the intent of a person's heart 1000 miles away (not to mention the whole resurrection thing).
That makes perfect sense but my point was that it seems like some Christians decide what verses to take literally and what verses not. How can you say that the Creation part is literal while this part is metaphorical? And who decides on that?

Daniel's dream makes no mention of a flat Earth. "behold a tree in the midst of the earth, and the height thereof [was] great"... stick a pencil through an orange, you'll then get part of the visual he's try to portray. It's similar to the midgard references in Nordic lore.
But it does say that you could see it from the end of the world. You can't see something no matter how high it is if you are on the other side of the world. But I get your point.

Like I said, what I'm really trying to point out is that it seems like some Christians decide for themselves what part of the Bible to believe and what not. That just sounds hypocritical to me.
     
Salah al-Din
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:48 PM
 
Originally posted by BoomStick:
You are trying to pigeonhole based on your misinterpretation.

I await your answer about the false prophet of satan, mohammad.
How can you be sure Jesus isn't the false prophet of satan?
     
Curios Meerkat
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:53 PM
 
Originally posted by Salah al-Din:
And how do you know when the Bible is speaking metaphorically and when not?
Because the Earth was created 7000 years ago in 6 days and that is a 'fact'.

Because the Earth is described as flat, but only as a metaphor - as there were no spheres or a concept of sphere thousands of years ago.

Because some people can't distinguish between beliefs and facts, and refute the difference between physic and metaphysic.

BoomStick/bubblewrap: stop acting like a jerk, and present your opinion honestly instead of using two aliases to "strengthen" your weak logic.

…somehow we find it hard to sell our values, namely that the rich should plunder the poor. - J. F. Dulles
     
BoomStick
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:54 PM
 
Because mohammad came after he warned of the false prophet of satan and NEVER advocated war or killing.

Duh....
     
Shaddim
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:56 PM
 
Originally posted by Salah al-Din:
That makes perfect sense but my point was that it seems like some Christians decide what verses to take literally and what verses not. How can you say that the Creation part is literal while this part is metaphorical? And who decides on that?

But it does say that you could see it from the end of the world. You can't see something no matter how high it is if you are on the other side of the world. But I get your point.

Like I said, what I'm really trying to point out is that it seems like some Christians decide for themselves what part of the Bible to believe and what not. That just sounds hypocritical to me.
I didn't say it was metaphorical, I said Satan took him to a mountain top and showed him a vision of all the kingdoms of the world. That's quite literal.

Some parts of the Bible are written in metaphor, some are written to be taken literally, (and some are both) it's the way of religious scripture in every culture.

Here's a very good primer on the basics of scriptural interpretation.

http://www.hillel.org/Hillel/NewHill...d?OpenDocument

Interpreting scripture takes a great deal of wisdom and discernment.
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
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BoomStick
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:57 PM
 
Originally posted by Curios Meerkat:

BoomStick/bubblewrap: stop acting like a jerk, and present your opinion honestly instead of using two aliases to "strengthen" your weak logic.
For the last and final time, we are two different people.

He is my twin brother.
     
Shaddim
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:57 PM
 
Originally posted by Salah al-Din:
How can you be sure Jesus isn't the false prophet of satan?
IMO, he's both Christ and Anti-Christ, the uniter and the divider (beginning and end).
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
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bubblewrap
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Feb 10, 2005, 12:59 PM
 
Originally posted by Curios Meerkat:


BoomStick/bubblewrap: stop acting like a jerk, and present your opinion honestly instead of using two aliases to "strengthen" your weak logic.
Quit acting like a jerk.
We discussed this once already.
To create a universe
You must taste
The forbidden fruit.
     
bubblewrap
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Feb 10, 2005, 01:00 PM
 
Mohammed was abducted by ailens and warned to end his violent ways.
To create a universe
You must taste
The forbidden fruit.
     
Salah al-Din
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Feb 10, 2005, 01:01 PM
 
Originally posted by MacNStein:
I didn't say it was metaphorical, I said Satan took him to a mountain top and showed him a vision of all the kingdoms of the world. That's quite literal.

Some parts of the Bible are written in metaphor, some are written to be taken literally, (and some are both) it's the way of religious scripture in every culture.

Here's a very good primer on the basics of scriptural interpretation.

http://www.hillel.org/Hillel/NewHill...d?OpenDocument

Interpreting scripture takes a great deal of wisdom and discernment.
Good link

But like I said. I'm not trying to show that the Bible said the earth was flat. What I'm hinting at is that some people, like ebuddy, seem to decide what of the Bible they believe and what not. The part about the Creation he believes without questioning it but the part about the earth being flat(or so it could be read) does absolutely not say that.

What I'm hoping for is some consistancy.
     
Salah al-Din
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Feb 10, 2005, 01:04 PM
 
Originally posted by MacNStein:
IMO, he's both Christ and Anti-Christ, the uniter and the divider (beginning and end).
Interesting thought. In my opinion his teachings have unfortunately led some people astray. Just look at the unforgiving nature of some Christians when it comes to homosexuality, sins, etc etc. I'm pretty sure Jesus(pbuh) would never have stood beside the Gay Pride parade with a sign saying God Hates Fags. And I'm pretty sure he would never bomb abortion clinics and so on and so on. I hope you get my point
     
Curios Meerkat
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Feb 10, 2005, 01:07 PM
 

…somehow we find it hard to sell our values, namely that the rich should plunder the poor. - J. F. Dulles
     
BoomStick
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Feb 10, 2005, 01:10 PM
 
Originally posted by Salah al-Din:
Interesting thought. In my opinion his teachings have unfortunately led some people astray. Just look at the unforgiving nature of some Christians when it comes to homosexuality, sins, etc etc. I'm pretty sure Jesus(pbuh) would never have stood beside the Gay Pride parade with a sign saying God Hates Fags. And I'm pretty sure he would never bomb abortion clinics and so on and so on. I hope you get my point
Unfortunately there are hyopcrites in every religion that purposely misinterpret for their own motives.

I agree with you completely on this.
     
Salah al-Din
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Feb 10, 2005, 01:17 PM
 
Originally posted by BoomStick:
Unfortunately there are hyopcrites in every religion that purposely misinterpret for their own motives.

I agree with you completely on this.
     
BRussell  (op)
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Feb 10, 2005, 04:49 PM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
Wrong. Because they don't go into public venues and forums like these to espouse their opposition does not mean they somehow are divorced from an opinion on the matter.

They embrace science, but often times have problems with the theory of evolution. The theory contains two aspects, one that is observable and one that is being debated daily on whether or not it's even plausible. There are a great many theologians that have problems with the theory of evolution as it's currently being disseminated, but it's a battle they've chosen not to fight. This does not mean they embrace it.
Attention all readers. In order to be a Christian, you don't have to believe, as ebuddy does, that research being currently published and conducted in the biological, life, and earth sciences is a grand hoax and a massive conspiracy against the population, similar to the moon landing hoax. That's not what Christianity is about. And when Christian denominations have gathered groups of theologians to study the issue, they have almost invariably reached that same conclusion, contrary to ebuddy's views. Some examples:
The Presbyterians:
Neither Scripture, our Confession of Faith, nor our Catechisms, teach the Creation of man by the direct and immediate acts of God so as to exclude the possibility of evolution as a scientific theory.
The Episcopal Church:
Resolved, that the 67th General Convention affirm the glorious ability of God to create in any manner, whether men understand it or not, and in this affirmation reject the limited insight and rigid dogmatism of the "Creationist" movement
The Roman Catholic Church (the Pope's statement on evolution) :
Today, almost half a century after the publication of the Encyclical, fresh knowledge has led to the recognition that evolution is more than a hypothesis. It is indeed remarkable that this theory has been progressively accepted by researchers, following a series of discoveries in various fields of knowledge. The convergence, neither sought nor fabricated, of the results of work that was conducted independently is in itself a significant argument in favour of this theory.
Tell me, do you believe in God?
Not sure why that's relevant to this discussion, but I'm not a theist - I don't believe in a God that is a supernatural being that interacts with people. I see God as a metaphor for how people have tried to understand the infinite, rather than an objective fact. And I'm not at all sure that Jesus holds the same kind of concrete, "theistic" view of God that so many people today hold:

Being asked by the Pharisees when the Kingdom of God would come, he answered them, “The Kingdom of God doesn’t come with observation; neither will they say, ‘Look, here!’ or, ‘Look, there!’ for behold, the Kingdom of God is within you.”
Luke 17:20-21

The kingdom of God will not be observable? It is within you? What kind of new age leftist radical atheist Christian-basher said that?
( Last edited by BRussell; Feb 10, 2005 at 04:54 PM. )
     
Shaddim
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Feb 10, 2005, 04:59 PM
 
Originally posted by BRussell:
Luke 17:20-21

The kingdom of God will not be observable? It is within you? What kind of new age radical atheist mocking modern Christianity said that?
No one ever said that Christians are trying to form or establish the "Kingdom of God" on Earth. They're working towards Christ's second coming.
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
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Feb 10, 2005, 05:37 PM
 
Originally posted by MacNStein:
No one ever said that Christians are trying to form or establish the "Kingdom of God" on Earth. They're working towards Christ's second coming.
No, and that's not what I meant by posting that. But if you look at the Gospels, I think you'll agree that this "Kingdom of God" was the main focus of Jesus' ministry - it's what he talked about the most, if the Gospels are a faithful representation. And he used all kinds of metaphors and parables to describe it and just generally treated it as a state of mind rather than a thing or a place, as the "within you" quote shows most clearly. If that's true, then the primary message of the religion of Jesus was not about an actual being or place in the sky somewhere, but an inner, kind of a psychological or moral state. That's my point - to de-emphasize the role of beings like God in the religion.

But on your point, I personally think this idea that the "Kingdom of God" was some kind of rapture or second coming is really not at all justified by the Bible. The notion that Jesus would come back with trumpets blaring is referenced a few times, but doesn't appear to be a central message, and it's not even clear that Jesus is referring to himself coming - he uses the phrase "Son of Man." I think Paul believed it, but unless you believe Paul rather than Jesus is the founder of Christianity, I don't see why he should be believed on the matter over Jesus.
     
Shaddim
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Feb 10, 2005, 05:50 PM
 
Originally posted by BRussell:
I think Paul believed it, but unless you believe Paul rather than Jesus is the founder of Christianity, I don't see why he should be believed on the matter over Jesus.
Paul IS the founder of 98% of Christian philosophy, and that's the main problem with it.

Jesus' main msg was "love your fellow man", all other things are an addendum to that message.

I'll post more on this later.
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
- Thomas Paine
     
Johnnyboysmac
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Feb 11, 2005, 02:21 AM
 
Very interesting thread to read and follow.

I particularly agree with Saleh al- Dins' points re how some Christians take/interpret biblical scripture either as allegory/metaphor on one hand, and/or plain unassailable fact on another.

Very relevant to the points he raised re right wing Christian fundamentalist blowing up of abortion clinics, or Jesus holding placards at a Gay Pride March saying 'God Hates Fags' - I think NOT.

The truly sad part IMHO, is that the perpetrators of such actions don't 'see' that they are in error, that their actions are not even remotely Christian, or that they are misinterpreting scripture to suit their own beliefs; rather they see the Bible as a manual that needs no interpretation, but should be followed to the letter.

Or at least the parts of it that suit their agenda.

Looking forward to the next installments on this thread by those who are more 'versed' in the basics of the topic than I.

Regards

John... :-)
Populist thinking exalts the simplistic and the ordinary
     
Face Ache
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Feb 11, 2005, 04:19 AM
 
Originally posted by MacNStein:
Jesus' main msg was "love your fellow man", all other things are an addendum to that message.
Jesus would get his ASS KICKED on MacNN.

I'm imagining him now arguing with Zimmy.

Zim would win when Jesus turned the other cheek.
     
ebuddy
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Feb 11, 2005, 09:02 AM
 
Originally posted by Salah al-Din:
[B]But like I said. I'm not trying to show that the Bible said the earth was flat. What I'm hinting at is that some people, like ebuddy, seem to decide what of the Bible they believe and what not. The part about the Creation he believes without questioning it but the part about the earth being flat(or so it could be read) does absolutely not say that.
Um, care to show me where I said I didn't question it??? Or are you just being a moron with a computer who thinks he's got something valuable to say?
What I'm hoping for is some consistancy.
I'm convinced there are some that will never find it. Why? Because they don't want to. Keep hoping.
ebuddy
     
Salah al-Din
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Feb 11, 2005, 09:10 AM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
Um, care to show me where I said I didn't question it??? Or are you just being a moron with a computer who thinks he's got something valuable to say?

I'm convinced there are some that will never find it. Why? Because they don't want to. Keep hoping.
Then, what do you question about Creationism? Please share it with me.

And there is no need for the personal attacks. Unless of course you know you have lost the argument and have nothing valuable to say.
     
ebuddy
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Feb 11, 2005, 09:31 AM
 
Originally posted by BRussell:
Attention all readers. In order to be a Christian, you don't have to believe, as ebuddy does, that research being currently published and conducted in the biological, life, and earth sciences is a grand hoax and a massive conspiracy against the population, similar to the moon landing hoax. That's not what Christianity is about.
Attention Christians; we debate as do the non-believers, tenets of our faith and philosophy. Our belief and/or disbelief is our personal endeavor alone in our search for truth. We will not be ascribed aspects of faith by those with none.

Who are you talking to? This is exactly the kind of mind-numbing crap that proves to me that you are unable to read and comprehend without first running it through that chip-filter on your shoulder. Two things for you to ponder whilst you wipe that slobber off your bib;
Never said that Evolutionary Theory is a grand hoax and that all research being currently published and conducted in the biological, life, and earth sciences is tantamount to massive conspiracy against the population. Not once. Care to provide a link where I made this sweeping generalization??? I also never once questioned the moon landing. I'm not sure I understand why you continue to argue with yourself. Furthermore; your attempt as an atheist to suppose what it is a good Christian is supposed to believe and not believe is even more absurd.
And when Christian denominations have gathered groups of theologians to study the issue, they have almost invariably reached that same conclusion, contrary to ebuddy's views. Some examples:
You might know some Christians are not Episcopalian, Presbyterian, and Catholic. BTW; I'm not sure I understand why you continue to interject religion in the first place. My premise is that there are scientists, the very scientists involved in the fields of science dealing with evolution that question it's premise, and with good reason. What do scientists do? Host conferences where thousands of scientists debate the very topic of discussion here.
Not sure why that's relevant to this discussion, but I'm not a theist - I don't believe in a God that is a supernatural being that interacts with people. I see God as a metaphor for how people have tried to understand the infinite, rather than an objective fact. And I'm not at all sure that Jesus holds the same kind of concrete, "theistic" view of God that so many people today hold:
Why is it relevant? To show the readers that yet another atheist is trying to tell them what to believe and not believe based on their personal belief. Anything to the contrary of what you believe is wrong, dillusional, fringe, ignorant, and naive. There are words for people like you...dogmatic.

Lastly; I'm not interested in your interpretation of scripture.
ebuddy
     
ebuddy
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Feb 11, 2005, 09:50 AM
 
Originally posted by Salah al-Din:
Then, what do you question about Creationism? Please share it with me.
And there is no need for the personal attacks. Unless of course you know you have lost the argument and have nothing valuable to say.
The Creationist model is a theoretical model, just as the evolutionary model. One theory presupposes purely natural phenomena for all that is known. The other presupposes Intelligent Design. I lean towards ID, but question both with equal veracity. What parts of it? All parts of it. The Flood story. The Genesis account of literal or non-literal 6-day creation. The age of the earth. Evidence for and against both the Evolutionary Model as well as the Creationist Model. This is science, ever-changing. I follow it with open eyes and mind. I do not jump in any one direction and begin calling others dogmatic, naive, and ignorant. I am scrutinous and discriminating with regard to research, 'constants' assumptions, methods, and conclusions. I question both. I challenge both. Those adherents to strictly Creationist or ID models; I question in theological circles. Those strictly adhering to the Evolutionary model, I question in secular circles.

flame-bait post by Salah al-Din; What I'm hinting at is that some people, like ebuddy, seem to decide what of the Bible they believe and what not. The part about the Creation he believes without questioning it but the part about the earth being flat(or so it could be read) does absolutely not say that.
Don't pretend to be offended by someone responding in like-manner to your bait. It's what you wanted. To bait someone, then whine about how the recipient responds is to be disingenuous, moronic, stilted, trollish, and fake. These are not insults if they can be established as fact. I appreciate your help on that.
ebuddy
     
Salah al-Din
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Feb 11, 2005, 09:55 AM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
The Creationist model is a theoretical model, just as the evolutionary model. One theory presupposes purely natural phenomena for all that is known. The other presupposes Intelligent Design. I lean towards ID, but question both with equal veracity. What parts of it? All parts of it. The Flood story. The Genesis account of literal or non-literal 6-day creation. The age of the earch. Evidence for and against both the Evolutionary Model as well as the Creationist Model. This is science, ever-changing. I follow it with open eyes and mind. I do not jump in any one direction and begin calling others dogmatic, naive, and ignorant. I am scrutinous and discriminating with regard to research, 'constants' assumptions, methods, and conclusions. I question both. I challenge both. Those adherents to strictly Creationist or ID models; I question in theological circles. Those strictly adhering to the Evolutionary model, I question in secular circles.
OK, but what are the evidence(scientifically accepted that is) for the ID and/or Creationism?

Don't pretend to be offended by someone responding in like-manner to your bait. It's what you wanted. To bait someone, then whine about how the recipient responds is to be disingenuous, moronic, stilted, trollish, and fake. These are not insults if they can be established as fact. I appreciate your help on that.
ah, more personal attacks. Could you show me where I personally attacked you? Or are you going to continue to "debate" on this level. Because if that is the case I'm not interested in having a debate with you. Because in that post you quoted you seem to have missed the keyword. And that was the word "seems". That to me it seemed like that. You could easily have corrected me without the personal attacks.
     
ebuddy
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Feb 11, 2005, 11:10 AM
 
Originally posted by Salah al-Din:
OK, but what are the evidence(scientifically accepted that is) for the ID and/or Creationism?
Science has defined itself as not ascribing traits of a deity or designer. For the sake of argument however, Immensely intricate design can be seen in everything we know to exist. From the incredible organization of the planets to the complexity of even the simplest cell. William Dembski describes ID much better than I could;
Because a sign is not the thing signified, intelligent design does not presume to identify the purposes of a designer. Intelligent design focuses not on the designer’s purposes (the thing signified) but on the artifacts resulting from a designer’s purposes (the sign). What a designer intends or purposes is, to be sure, an interesting question, and one may be able to infer something about a designer’s purposes from the designed objects that a designer produces. Nevertheless, the purposes of a designer lie outside the scope of intelligent design. As a scientific research program, intelligent design investigates the effects of intelligence and not intelligence as such.
Intelligent design is controversial because it purports to find signs of intelligence in nature, and specifically in biological systems. According to the evolutionary biologist Francisco Ayala, Darwin’s greatest achievement was to show how the organized complexity of organisms could be attained apart from a designing intelligence. Intelligent design therefore directly challenges Darwinism and other naturalistic approaches to the origin and evolution of life.

ID is a theory of biological origins and development, intelligent design’s central claim is that only intelligent causes adequately explain the complex, information-rich structures of biology and that these causes are empirically detectable. To say intelligent causes are empirically detectable is to say there exist well-defined methods that, based on observable features of the world, can reliably distinguish intelligent causes from undirected natural causes. Intelligence leaves behind a characteristic trademark or signature—what within the intelligent design community is now called specified complexity. An event exhibits specified complexity if it is contingent and therefore not necessary; if it is complex and therefore not readily repeatable by chance; and if it is specified in the sense of exhibiting an independently given pattern. In determining whether biological organisms exhibit specified complexity, design theorists focus on identifiable systems (e.g., individual enzymes, metabolic pathways, and molecular machines). These systems are not only specified by their independent functional requirements but also exhibit a high degree of complexity.

Once an essential constituent of an organism exhibits specified complexity, any design attributable to that constituent carries over to the organism as a whole. To attribute design to an organism one need not demonstrate that every aspect of the organism was designed. Organisms, like all material objects, are products of history and thus subject to the buffeting of purely material factors. Automobiles, for instance, get old and exhibit the effects of corrosion, hail, and frictional forces. But that doesn’t make them any less designed. Likewise design theorists argue that organisms, though exhibiting the effects of history (and that includes Darwinian factors such as genetic mutations and natural selection), also include an ineliminable core that is designed.
Salah al-Din's statement again for clarity;like ebuddy, seem to decide what of the Bible they believe and what not. The part about the Creation he believes without questioning it but the part about the earth being flat(or so it could be read) does absolutely not say that.
Because in that post you quoted you seem to have missed the keyword. And that was the word "seems". That to me it seemed like that. You could easily have corrected me without the personal attacks.
So if I understand this, you are suggesting that out of the entire above embolded statement the word "seems" was the key word? That was the take-away? Hmmm. I think you're being disingenuous again. Your statement was nothing more than a leap of conjecture based on an ignorant view of what it is you think I am and what it is you claim I believe and disbelieve. I'm going to call this behavior to the carpet every single time I see it. I'm sorry if that offends, but one thing's for sure; I'm not going to make assumptions on your personal philosophy unless you give them to me. If you don't give them to me and I assume a stance for you, then debate that assumed stance, I am in fact debating myself. If you feel the need to exclude yourself from the debate, you may find that you have alienated the only one debating you.
ebuddy
     
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Feb 11, 2005, 11:41 AM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
ID Post...
There are many examples of unintelligent design in life. Why did this designer give some snakes and whales nonfunctional pelvic bones? Why is it that 98 percent of the designs failed (i.e. extinction)? Why does a single-celled organism (Amoeba dubia) have over 200 times more DNA than the human genome? Surely amoebas are less complex than humans?

An examination of the human genome reveals additional examples of poor design. Over 40 percent of the genome is composed of defective viruses (compared to 2 percent that actually encodes our genes) that have a propensity for causing genome instability (mutations). Why would a designer incorporate mechanisms for changing the genetic program? Did this designer also design the AIDS virus, smallpox virus and the anthrax bacterium?

ID is a theory of biological origins and development
Finally, the most serious limitation of intelligent design is that it cannot be experimentally examined. Until the intelligent-design movement does a few experiments that exclusively demonstrate intelligent design, it isn’t science and has not earned a place in science education.


TONY SCHOUNTZ, Ph.D.
Department of Biology
Mesa State College
     
BRussell  (op)
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Feb 11, 2005, 11:47 AM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
Never said that Evolutionary Theory is a grand hoax and that all research being currently published and conducted in the biological, life, and earth sciences is tantamount to massive conspiracy against the population.
You may not own up to it, but that's exactly what your statements demand. The people working in all the life and earth sciences use the basic premise of adaptation and large changes over time. Every day. If the flaws in this approach are so obvious that ebuddy on MacNN can point to them, the only explanation is that the actual folks who work in those fields must be intentionally hiding them. You folks are not more knowledgeable about their fields than they are, I hope you would agree. So a huge conspiracy is the only explanation for the gap between what they say and what the creationist web sites say is so obvious. It's a conspiracy much greater in scale than the moon-landing or round earth hoaxes. Much, much bigger.
You might know some Christians are not Episcopalian, Presbyterian, and Catholic.
Those were only some good examples. I could list others if you wish. If you know of any public statements by Christian denominations stating that in order to be a Christian, it is necessary to reject biological evolution, I'd like to see it. Those churches who have studied this have invariably, as far as I know, decided that evolution and religion are completely compatible.

Why is it relevant? To show the readers that yet another atheist is trying to tell them what to believe and not believe based on their personal belief. Anything to the contrary of what you believe is wrong, dillusional, fringe, ignorant, and naive. There are words for people like you...dogmatic.

Lastly; I'm not interested in your interpretation of scripture.
Well I'm interested in yours, because I feel a responsibility to point out that your interpretations and your religious beliefs aren't the only type of Christianity out there. I believe it's what turns off many liberals who otherwise wouldn't see Christianity as their enemy.
     
ebuddy
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Feb 11, 2005, 12:56 PM
 
Originally posted by zerostar:
There are many examples of unintelligent design in life. Why did this designer give some snakes and whales nonfunctional pelvic bones? Why is it that 98 percent of the designs failed (i.e. extinction)? Why does a single-celled organism (Amoeba dubia) have over 200 times more DNA than the human genome? Surely amoebas are less complex than humans?
I don't understand your premise here. Do you know for certain these things are not simply the result of the known and frequently observed laws of entropy? Why is it that DNA contains complex, almost binary, predictable numerical sequences, "director genes", and motors? Why is it in the very lingo used by science that cannot embrace design we find words that imply it like; directed, pointed, specified, ratio, laws, rules, governors, template, sequential, information, storage, edited, corrected, repaired, encoding, control, plans. These are all words and phrases one would expect to find in regard to design.
An examination of the human genome reveals additional examples of poor design.
Correction. A closer examination of genomes in general illustrates, more commonly the destructive result of mutations and entropy over time. Less increased complexity, more decreased complexity and destruction.
Over 40 percent of the genome is composed of defective viruses (compared to 2 percent that actually encodes our genes) that have a propensity for causing genome instability (mutations). Why would a designer incorporate mechanisms for changing the genetic program?
Needed adaptibility, constituting particular resilliance to generally overcome entropy and the sometimes adverse affects of nature for a period of time. This adaptibility has a limit. A beginning and an end.
Did this designer also design the AIDS virus, smallpox virus and the anthrax bacterium?
No sir, not necessarily. According to some models, organisms began without flaw and have carved an observable path of decay. This may imply a designed beginning and predetermined ending, with evidence in nature suggesting decline toward that end, not incline toward endlessness. The human genome is not excluded from the laws. In some cases, viruses are propogated through unhealthy lifestyles and practices. At their inception is mutation. Generally observed to be more destructive than constructive.
Finally, the most serious limitation of intelligent design is that it cannot be experimentally examined. Until the intelligent-design movement does a few experiments that exclusively demonstrate intelligent design, it isn’t science and has not earned a place in science education.
I'm not sure I understand what you mean by not having "earned it's way into science education". Major proponents of ID were bent on identifying traits of the designer. It is this motivation that encouraged their work. To say that someone adhering to ideals of ID have not earned their way into science is to deny the history of it. That said; I'm not suggesting necessarily that it be included in science education. I find the deliberate exclusion of it to be unfortunate however. I am however, in total disagreement with you that ID cannot be scientifically examined. "Intelligent design is a theory for making sense of intelligent causes. As such, intelligent design formalizes and makes precise something we do all the time. All of us are all the time engaged in a form of rational activity that, without being tendentious, can be described as inferring design. Inferring design is a common and well-accepted human activity...There is no magic, no vitalism, no appeal to occult forces. Inferring design is common, rational and objectifiable." Forensics, archaeology, and cryptography for example; employ the same test/control for determining deliberation and they are very scientific in method and conclusion.
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Feb 11, 2005, 01:46 PM
 
Originally posted by BRussell: You may not own up to it, but... I have to label you. It makes me feel more comfortable knowing I can tag an adversary. Whether or not my tag is sufficient or justifiable is beside the point. I need something to be against. If you give me nothing to really be against, I will make something up for you and be against that.
*fixed.
The people working in all the life and earth sciences use the basic premise of adaptation and large changes over time. Every day. If the flaws in this approach are so obvious that ebuddy on MacNN can point to them, the only explanation is that the actual folks who work in those fields must be intentionally hiding them. You folks are not more knowledgeable about their fields than they are, I hope you would agree.
No. I cannot agree. You fail to realize that the scientific community engages these debates amongst themselves. Why is this so hard for you to grasp? Science and it's theories change as evidence presents itself. Any science that squelches models that may conflict with current premise of theory (realizing that you don't need to question the unobserved macro-evolution to enjoy a successful career in studying micro evolution) is to be less than scientific. Scientists themselves do not generally approach their work in this way. Why you feel it necessary to is beyond me.
So a huge conspiracy is the only explanation for the gap between what they say and what the creationist web sites say is so obvious.
Creationism and ID are two differing models and adherents to either debate amongst themselves. It is not necessary for them to be in lock-step with one another just as debates continue on what constitutes speciation, or the differences of ideals in evolution theory. Furthermore, I don't know why you feel it's necessary to belittle theories for which you know so little about. There are a great many men, opposed to evolutionary theory as it's currently being disseminated, that know much more than you. They number in the hundreds of thousands and range in expertise from embryo-biology to astro-physics.
It's a conspiracy much greater in scale than the moon-landing or round earth hoaxes. Much, much bigger.
Care to line up any more false accusations for which you can debate yourself? Are you some sort of Darwinist apologist or evangelist of some sort?
Those were only some good examples. I could list others if you wish. If you know of any public statements by Christian denominations stating that in order to be a Christian, it is necessary to reject biological evolution, I'd like to see it. Those churches who have studied this have invariably, as far as I know, decided that evolution and religion are completely compatible.
There are multiple facets to Evolution Theory my friend. Some facets are more or less debateable, but there are many that are not. There is no necessary theological gain to suppose science is entirely duping the public. There are however, benefits to remaining objective and curious. Something I find lacking in your arguments. I'm not the first one to suggest that aspects of science have become more concerned with data that supports a pre-supposition than data that forms a supposition. You might know about research grants, exchanges of ideals, who publishes you, how one gets published, and how this can affect one's career and notariety. I don't understand why you'd even attempt to insist that concern for affluence, power, and monetary gain is somehow exclusive only to politicians and theologians. You'd admit that greed exists among humankind correct? You'd also agree that scientists are human? This is not a generalization as it does not apply to all sciences. It is however, particulary prevalent in regards to origins or the attempt at them using purely natural phenomena as the foundation or core of the model.
Well I'm interested in yours, because I feel a responsibility to point out that your interpretations and your religious beliefs aren't the only type of Christianity out there. I believe it's what turns off many liberals who otherwise wouldn't see Christianity as their enemy.
For those that have found Christianity to be their enemy, it was not contingent upon their desire to maintain or diminish scientific objectivity, rather they have rejected Christianity on premises having nothing to do with science. Perhaps, in this you'd know more than I. Conversely, I'm interested in knowing why a self-proclaimed atheist as yourself is so concerned about the state of Christianity today and the robustness of it's growth. Why you would consider yourself a qualified authority in pointing out the fallacy of my theological ideals, beliefs, and faith is beyond me.
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Feb 11, 2005, 03:20 PM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
No. I cannot agree. You fail to realize that the scientific community engages these debates amongst themselves.
Yeah, I had no idea that the scientific community debates things. Please. That's virtually all they do. I'm a PhD in a field of research, cognitive psychology. Though I'm not on the biological side, I spent years in grad school being trained to do research, I review research, I submit my own research for publication, I submit grant applications with research proposals. I'd say that I know just a little about the way it works. It's highly competitive, and based very much on "debate." Of course biological evolution goes through those debates, and has been through them for decades. And that's exactly the point - it's been through that tough competitive atmosphere and has come out of it as the foundation of all of these fields. Not some extra little side-issue, but the foundation. It's simply too consistent with virtually everything known in virtually all the fields of science to at this point be "wrong." Debate time frames, debate specifics, debate slow vs. punctuated change, sure, it's happening constantly. As you say, it's debated all the time.

But the idea that humans and other organisms didn't evolve from different species over long periods of time is simply not plausible given all that we know today about the world - plant life, animal life, fossils, geology, chemistry, biology, etc. etc. And it's not enough to point out things we don't know. Of course we don't know everything - anyone who says so is ignorant themselves. But to be a real alternative theory, you have to have a specific hypothesis that can be evaluated with evidence.

Tell me - I've tried to figure this out, but I've heard enough mixed things that I really don't know - does your type of ID accept that organisms evolved from other, less complex organisms over time? To the extent that it does acknowledge that, I don't have a problem with it; for example, the idea that the Big Bang was the work of the creator, and everything took off from there. As long as that kind of theory is recognized as a philosophical position rather than a scientific theory, it doesn't bother me in the slightest.

There are a great many men, opposed to evolutionary theory as it's currently being disseminated, that know much more than you. They number in the hundreds of thousands and range in expertise from embryo-biology to astro-physics.
There aren't hundreds of thousands of researchers in the fields we're talking about who question whether life has changed and diversified and become more complex over time.

For those that have found Christianity to be their enemy, it was not contingent upon their desire to maintain or diminish scientific objectivity, rather they have rejected Christianity on premises having nothing to do with science. Perhaps, in this you'd know more than I. Conversely, I'm interested in knowing why a self-proclaimed atheist as yourself is so concerned about the state of Christianity today and the robustness of it's growth. Why you would consider yourself a qualified authority in pointing out the fallacy of my theological ideals, beliefs, and faith is beyond me.
I consider myself to be a Christian. I'm concerned about the state of my religious heritage and cultural traditions because they are the foundation of our society. And I will continue to point out that Christianity has not always been the way it is in America today. Christians don't have to be politically conservative. We don't have to be anti-gay, or oppose abortion rights. We don't have to reject the foundation of the life and earth and biological sciences. We don't even have to vote for Republican politicians. I know you hate it when I give this mantra here, but that fact only encourages me.
     
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Feb 11, 2005, 03:48 PM
 
ebuddy:

I read your post(and am going to ignore the continued personal attacks) and after reading it I still can't point out the evidence for the ID theory. There doesn't seem to be any way of checking for it's scientific correctness/value. And until then you can only call it a a philosophical/theological theory and it shouldn't be confused with empirical science.
     
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Feb 12, 2005, 11:37 AM
 
Kristof writes in his NY Times column today about how religiosity may be genetic. Yes, it's in his typical hamfisted fashion, but still it was getting at the topic of the thread.

Instead, modern science is turning up a possible reason why the religious right is flourishing and secular liberals aren't: instinct. It turns out that our DNA may predispose humans toward religious faith.

Granted, that's not very encouraging news for the secular left. Imagine if many of us are hard-wired to be religious. Imagine if, as a cosmic joke, humans have gradually evolved to leave many of us doubting evolution.

The notion of a genetic inclination toward religion is not new. Edward Wilson, the founder of the field of sociobiology, argued in the 1970's that a predisposition to religion may have had evolutionary advantages.

In recent years evidence has mounted that there may be something to this, and the evidence is explored in "The God Gene," a fascinating book published recently by Dean Hamer, a prominent American geneticist. Dr. Hamer even identifies a particular gene, VMAT2, that he says may be involved. People with one variant of that gene tend to be more spiritual, he found, and those with another variant to be less so.

There's still plenty of reason to be skeptical because Dr. Hamer's work hasn't been replicated, and much of his analysis is speculative. Moreover, any genetic predisposition isn't for becoming an evangelical, but for an openness to spirituality at a much broader level. In Alabama, it may express itself in Pentecostalism; in California, in astrology or pyramids.

Still, it's striking how faith is almost irrepressible. While I was living in China in the early 1990's, after religion had been suppressed for decades, drivers suddenly began dangling pictures of Chairman Mao from their rear-view mirrors. The word had spread that Mao's spirit could protect them from car crashes or even bring them sons and wealth. It was a miracle: ordinary Chinese had transformed the great atheist into a god.

One bit of evidence supporting a genetic basis for spirituality is that twins separated at birth tend to have similar levels of spirituality, despite their different upbringings. And identical twins, who have the same DNA, are about twice as likely to share similar levels of spirituality as fraternal twins.
     
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Feb 12, 2005, 12:12 PM
 
Originally posted by BRussell:
Yeah, I had no idea that the scientific community debates things. Please. That's virtually all they do. I'm a PhD in a field of research, cognitive psychology. Though I'm not on the biological side, I spent years in grad school being trained to do research, I review research, I submit my own research for publication, I submit grant applications with research proposals. I'd say that I know just a little about the way it works. It's highly competitive, and based very much on "debate." Of course biological evolution goes through those debates, and has been through them for decades. And that's exactly the point - it's been through that tough competitive atmosphere and has come out of it as the foundation of all of these fields.
It is not the "foundation of all these fields". The observed instance of micro-evolution or adaptation is critical to advancement in these fields. Evolution of man from other species, however is not a necessary function of any of these fields, particulary yours according to you.
Not some extra little side-issue, but the foundation.
Macro-evolution is indeed an interesting extra little side issue and is not necessary for the research and advancement of biology.
It's simply too consistent with virtually everything known in virtually all the fields of science to at this point be "wrong."
You are still failing to realize the debate. The debate lies at the core of speciation and constitutes the difference between adaptation and divergence resulting from environmental influence and shift-mutation. Surely, as a PhD you are well aware of the implications of mutation in human kind as they comprise the source of disease and decay, not increased complexity. The current macro-evolutionary model has proven woefully inadequate in explaining how and to what degree species morphed and there is far too little empirical evidence pointing to any gradual morph. What we find are species having exploded onto the scene. You call it 'punctuated change', but this recent theory is also highly debateable.
Debate time frames, debate specifics, debate slow vs. punctuated change, sure, it's happening constantly. As you say, it's debated all the time.
Correct. We're not debating adaptation. For example; an aerogene deprived of it's natural sugar sustainance, may acquire the ability to ingest a synthetic sugar, but is still unmistakeably the same aerogene. the nylon bug may acquire the ability to ingest a synthetic nylon, however remains unmistakeably the same bacteria. Likewise in mammalian species. There is no evidence to suggest the type of morphism macro-evolution proports. Known and observable traits of evolution have been included with suppostions that remain in significant debate and as such, IMO have led to one convoluted theory of evolution packaged for the ignorant. Then I get to endure statements indicting my ignorance by those who have proven to me nothing less than dogmatic in thier unceasing support for all that is alleged science.
But the idea that humans and other organisms didn't evolve from different species over long periods of time is simply not plausible given all that we know today about the world - plant life, animal life, fossils, geology, chemistry, biology, etc. etc. And it's not enough to point out things we don't know.
Conversely, it's important not to forget what we do know and use that knowledge in context of what we don't. Please site for me examples of transitional species, the studies themselves, and the conclusion.
Of course we don't know everything - anyone who says so is ignorant themselves. But to be a real alternative theory, you have to have a specific hypothesis that can be evaluated with evidence.
You have to agree on what constitutes 'evidence' first.
Tell me - I've tried to figure this out, but I've heard enough mixed things that I really don't know - does your type of ID accept that organisms evolved from other, less complex organisms over time? To the extent that it does acknowledge that, I don't have a problem with it; for example, the idea that the Big Bang was the work of the creator, and everything took off from there. As long as that kind of theory is recognized as a philosophical position rather than a scientific theory, it doesn't bother me in the slightest.
We know that species adapt according to their environment. There are genes at play that engage repair and duplication based on the needs presented them by the effects of entropy and a hostile environment. There are limitations to this adaptation and they generally stop at the species level. There are currently 8 arguments in the biological community regarding speciation alone. I watch with a curious and critical eye. We know vast change has serious consequences on the reproductive ability of the species and mass morph as is currently being taught is not plausible from what we know and can observe. Then, there is a time-table at play. A time-table I see as ever-increasing as the we learn more about how implausible this successful mass divergence would be.

There aren't hundreds of thousands of researchers in the fields we're talking about who question whether life has changed and diversified and become more complex over time.
What organisms have become more complex over time? What is it you're considering "more complex"?
I consider myself to be a Christian. I'm concerned about the state of my religious heritage and cultural traditions because they are the foundation of our society.
Originally posted by Brussell in response to; Do you believe in God?
I'm not a theist - I don't believe in a God that is a supernatural being that interacts with people. I see God as a metaphor for how people have tried to understand the infinite, rather than an objective fact. And I'm not at all sure that Jesus holds the same kind of concrete, "theistic" view of God that so many people today hold.
I dare say it's possible that your ideal of what constitutes Christianity puts more 'fence-sitters' at risk than me challenging populist thought.
Christians don't have to be politically conservative. We don't have to be anti-gay, or oppose abortion rights. We don't have to reject the foundation of the life and earth and biological sciences. We don't even have to vote for Republican politicians. I know you hate it when I give this mantra here, but that fact only encourages me.
Why do people like you insist on establshing a stance for me, then arguing your own assumption? Don't be a moron doc. I'm not anti-gay and I don't reject the foundation of the life and earth and biological sciences. I question it. I hope that's okay with you. Sheesh, next you'll be on public access television asking for tithes to National Geographic or something.
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Feb 12, 2005, 04:27 PM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
<snip ID explanation>
I'm sorry, but I.D. seems to rely on ad hoc hypotheses; ID seems to be nothing more than pseudoscience.

It reminds me of a quotation by some elderly scientist who, as he approached death, said something along the lines of, quote, The universe is so complex and perfectly constructed that there's no way it could be a random accident/event, unquote (plus something about uniqueness). Something like that.

But how can we describe the universe in these terms when we have nothing to compare it to?

I.D., if I am understanding correctly, believes that because certain scientific numbers (planet locations, rotations, elemental mass, etc.) are "perfect" and if they were off by even a fraction of a decimal, that the universe would not exist as it does today; well, they're right. Does this mean that the universe is a result of intelligent design? No, I don't think that A. logically leads to B. in this case.

Because of the laws of physics and the certain "constants" that run our universe, planets came to be where they are, and we came to be where we are...so what? So does this mean that some creator perfectly constructed the laws of physics? Does this mean that a designer figured out what exact nuclear force was needed to bind protons and neutrons in the nuclei of atoms in his universe? Did a creator make sure that gravity was much less powerful a force than electromagnetism, knowing that otherwise our universe wouldn't work?

Please. How can you infer B. from A.?

In a different, imagined universe, the laws of physics could be completely unlike those that govern our universe. If this universe was stable in the same manner that ours is, would this imply another designer? Or maybe the same designer on a new project? How could it? The universe is the way it is. That's all that we can really touch on, so why go at length with pseudoscience to try to rationalize a deity? No one knows -- perhaps no one will ever know -- how this thing began...and you can't logically look at this thing and note that if things were off just a wee bit, that this thing wouldn't exist.

If I'm misunderstanding I.D., please let me know, but this seems to be the case.
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Feb 12, 2005, 04:56 PM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
Had you read the Bible, you might know it's a little deeper than 'happy miracles'. There are hundreds of OT prophecy fulfilled in Jesus' lifetime. There are compelling mysteries in the very words themselves, equating to extreme design. If you don't know, it's because you haven't involved yourself in it as I have. You might know the more you study a thing, the more of that thing is revealed to you. In short, it's possible no amount of evidence would quench your thirst.
I remember reading that there were quite a few OT prophecies that were supposed to be fulfilled by the coming Messiah that were not fulfilled. Just because prophecy is fulfilled does not mean that the future was predicted. Someone, having read a prophecy, can choose to make believers out of other readers by making sure the prophecy is fulfilled. It's even easier if the prophecy is vague.

But I'm not a Bible scholar and I don't know if these prophecies you mention could be fulfilled in such a manner (or were really fulfilled at all). A link to the OT prophecy-fulfillments would be nice if you can point me in that direction.

Regardless, how does this equate with "extreme design?"

Originally posted by ebuddy:
I know. No amount of evidence supporting intricate design, Biblical doctrine, and really no amount of evidence would suffice to you. Interestingly, the Bible talks about this also.
Abstractly, I'm sure.

Originally posted by ebuddy:
How quick you are to throw around indictments of ignorance. If you could please take that "higher intellectual plain" [sic ] dunce cap off your head, perhaps then we can embrace discussion. This is getting sickening.
Historically, too often the "why" has been based on bogus artist drawings of embryos, chimeras, and other works of the greedy artisan in having successfully duped a society of men that once thought blood-letting was effective for aiding diarrhea. I've mentioned that I'm interested in continued scientific advancement. I do not jump on to the latest thought immediately and begin my journey of calling others ignorant and adversarial for not buying in. Then again, I may be a little more scientifically minded than you.
The science of yore operated slightly differently than science today.

From reading Stephen Hawking's works, you'd be hard-pressed in not believing there's a God. They won't say so implicitly because it is not in their field to say. Countless scientists discussing their fascination with what can only be described as immensely intricate design.
I would call it fascinating, but I wouldn't jump to call it "design."
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Feb 12, 2005, 05:03 PM
 
If I throw a rock and then millennia later someone studies where the rock was thrown from and where it landed, evidence will show that it was thrown with exactly the right force at exactly the right trajectory to land exactly where it did. Someone will say that's just the way the Universe is and someone else will say that the exactness of the force and trajectory to land exactly where it did is proof of the existence of God.
     
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Feb 12, 2005, 05:06 PM
 
Originally posted by Wiskedjak:
If I throw a rock and then millennia later someone studies where the rock was thrown from and where it landed, evidence will show that it was thrown with exactly the right force at exactly trajectory to land exactly where it did. Someone will say that's just the way the Universe is and someone else will say that the exactness of the force and trajectory is proof of the existence of God.
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Feb 15, 2005, 02:50 AM
 
/mal
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Feb 15, 2005, 08:14 AM
 
Originally posted by malvolio:
God FAQ
I wish I was a true mental giant like you malvolio.

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Feb 15, 2005, 08:54 AM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
It is not the "foundation of all these fields". The observed instance of micro-evolution or adaptation is critical to advancement in these fields. Evolution of man from other species, however is not a necessary function of any of these fields, particulary yours according to you. Macro-evolution is indeed an interesting extra little side issue and is not necessary for the research and advancement of biology.
There is only Evolution, no micro no macro no made up BS you want to call what you want to call it. You are only fooling yourself.

The current macro-evolutionary model
There is only ONE model, you admit it works quite well for your made-up "micro-evolution" but fail to EVER tell me what STOPS IT FROM WORKING in your made up "macro-evolution" model.

What we find are species having exploded onto the scene. You call it 'punctuated change', but this recent theory is also highly debateable.
THIS RECENT THEORY? ARE YOU KIDDING? I showed you how darwin defined this, in 1859.
This is not highly debatable it is a cornerstone of evolution.

I pointed this out to you a few weeks ago yet you still keep posting your nonsense.

You are fooling no one, go take a trip to the falls of the ohio, you can see for yourself 70,000 years of evolution in progress, EXACTLY as we expect to see it happen, slowly small, limited, simple organisms at the bottom, thousands of transitions up to the top layers, I did not see a T-REX in the bottom strata but perhaps I missed it...

We're not debating adaptation. For example; an aerogene deprived of it's natural sugar sustainance, may acquire the ability to ingest a synthetic sugar, but is still unmistakeably the same aerogene.
And tell me, just how did it acquire this ability? Don't say adaption, tell me what precisely took place? Evolution plain and simple.

Then I get to endure statements indicting my ignorance by those who have proven to me nothing less than dogmatic in thier unceasing support for all that is alleged science.
Because you spew the same **** over and over and when someone points something out to you and you EVEN SAY "ok, ill give you that one" YOU STILL SPEW THE SAME **** A FEW WEEKS LATER.

Please site for me examples of transitional species, the studies themselves, and the conclusion.
All organisms are transitional, I told you this before as well. Open your ears.
Homo Sapiens, the study is still in progress, you however, are excluded from the study.

There are limitations to this adaptation and they generally stop at the species level.
NO, limitatons STOP AT DEATH. Define for me what differentiates a species from another? However we damn well want to differentiate it. You say there are 8 ways to speciate (which I corrected) and now you imply there is a clear divide that adaption can not cross.

Get off of it, you are all over the place and tripping over yourself to try to get what you believe to seem even somewhat plausable. Fooling only yourself man.

There are currently 8 arguments in the biological community regarding speciation alone. I watch with a curious and critical eye.
You watch with nothing, you are not reading as we have talk about this before as well, I told you how many ways there were to define speciation, it was not 8, did you forget or do you just have this same old argument saved somewhere to copy-paste it?

What organisms have become more complex over time? What is it you're considering "more complex"?
All of them. Go see for yourself some time.

But wait, you won't in a few days you will say the same things over and over.
You don't want to study anything, you have fine tuned your debate and that is what you want to use, never to touch it again. This is painfully obvious.

And for that you are not worth my time anymore. (Or anyone else's time IMO)
     
ebuddy
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Feb 15, 2005, 11:36 AM
 
All originally posted by zerostar:
There is only Evolution, no micro no macro no made up BS you want to call what you want to call it. You are only fooling yourself.
There is no difference between macro evolution and micro evolution, only evolution??? You're not paying very close attention to embryo-biology. You're not paying very close attention to almost any medical dictionary I can find in which both aspects of evolution are mentioned, isolated, and defined. You're not paying attention to the fact that the proponents of evolution are debating the plausibility of the exact same mechanisms you and I are. Why do you insist on remaining blind to this? What is your problem with the possibility that you could be off your friggin' rocker on this? The very community you have somehow elevated to godhood are the ones that came up with the difference zerostar, not me. I wish I could take credit for this. I simply cannot.
There is only ONE model, you admit it works quite well for your made-up "micro-evolution" but fail to EVER tell me what STOPS IT FROM WORKING in your made up "macro-evolution" model.
I've already told you. There is an observed ceiling to adaptation. Are you familiar with breeding? Are you familiar with cross-pollination? The change or 'morph' occurs rapidly at first, then slows, then stops. Time and again this is what we observe in nature yet, observation is not an aspect of science in your loyal and dogmatic view. Darwin's rock pigeons for example; Darwin was able to selectively breed rock pigeons and did indeed produce several variations of rock pigeon. He summized that if he could successfully produce this many variations of rock pigeon in such a short period of time, his theory was more plausible. Unfortunately for Darwin, the first problem is that the morphs were not grand-they were still unmistakeably rock pigeons. Another problem is that this stimuli was not natural, it was manipulated by selective breeding in a lab. The third problem is when the pigeons were left alone, they immediately returned within a couple of generations to the original rock pigeon. Their ascension ceased almost immediately. The fourth problem with this is that Darwin didn't live long enough to witness that the amount of change began to slow and eventually stopped-establishing proof that there is a limit to adaptation.

Darwin discovered finches that had much longer beaks than those found off the Galopagos island. He supposed that evolution was changing the species. Interestingly, these finches remained finches. Princeton professor Peter Grant completed an 18 year study of the finches on this island. He concluded that during drought years, the finches with shorter beaks perished because the supply of food-seed was limited, only those that could reach the grubs living under tree bark could survive. Here you can clearly observe natural selection, but not divergence, or the addition of new data. Furthermore, it is not a permanent change. The finch offspring with shorter beaks prospered during seasons of plenty. Micro evolution is adaptation. The bringing forth of traits already in existence for a need. Not the successful addition of new traits.

Another example is the sugar beet. Over a century ago some sugar cane farmers thought they'd try to increase the percentage of sugar in their sugar beets. The level of sugar was approximated to be 6%. Through cross pollination they were able to get the percentage of sugar to an impressive 13%. Less than 80 years later they were able to slowly climb their way to 17%. It remains at 17% today. There is a limit to the exploitation of a trait. What do we see? Rapid change, followed by slowed change, followed by the ceiling or limit to change and the hault of it. What do you see? Whatever it is you want to see. Unfortunately you can't see what it is you want to believe.
THIS RECENT THEORY? ARE YOU KIDDING? I showed you how darwin defined this, in 1859.
This is not highly debatable it is a cornerstone of evolution.
You showed me how Darwin defined this? Punctuated equilibrium was a theory comprised by Eldredge and Gould to explain the lacking fossile record with regard to slow change. Punctuated Equilibrium was proposed as a criticism of the traditional Darwinian theory of evolution. So...no. If you did show me this, you showed me something bogus.
I pointed this out to you a few weeks ago yet you still keep posting your nonsense.
First of all, had you done a better job of presenting your points I may have retained some of the data. Secondly, your credibility regarding what you did or did not adequately point out to me is in question as evidenced above.
You are fooling no one, go take a trip to the falls of the ohio, you can see for yourself 70,000 years of evolution in progress, EXACTLY as we expect to see it happen, slowly small, limited, simple organisms at the bottom, thousands of transitions up to the top layers, I did not see a T-REX in the bottom strata but perhaps I missed it...
Apparently a compelling display and proof of evolution eh?
COLUMBUS, OHIO — In what could turn out to be a stunning victory for opponents of evolution, the Ohio Department of Education voted 17-0 on Tuesday to pass a "resolution of intent" to adopt science standards that would allow students to "investigate and critically analyze" Darwin's theory of evolution. With additional hearings scheduled for November and a final vote to be held in December, Ohio is likely to become the latest battleground in the never-ending debate over how life began. Maybe they were sleeping at the falls as well. *note; for those of you with less evolved humor genes, this is a joke. The falls of Ohio are in Jeffersonville, Ind. I wonder if they're dating the fossiles by whereever it is in the geologic column they are found and they are determing the geological column by what fossiles are found within it. I'm also interested in your supposition that all fossiles are transitional. This is certainly one way out of the argument, but it doesn't stand to logic and reason. The bat for example, may have evolved from a rodent or rat, yet what of it's retarded wings during development? Natural selection most assuredly would've seen the demise of this species. The answer, the rat became extinct and *POOF wings occured fully functional in the new species. Pardon me if I find this lacks plausibility. At the end of the day, macro evolution requires the addition of new data. How? Mutation and shift mutation due to environmental stimuli, generally resulting in disease, decreased ability to reproduce, and decay. This mechanism can somehow account for all that we know exists having come from a common ancestor? Balderdash! Only to the faithful like you. To me, science has not reached it's pinnacle and it's end. To you, apparently it has. I'm glad you are not involved as you'd likely see it's demise.
And tell me, just how did it acquire this ability? Don't say adaption, tell me what precisely took place? Evolution plain and simple.
indeed, micro evolution. Site for me an example of where this mechanism did not stop?
Because you spew the same **** over and over and when someone points something out to you and you EVEN SAY "ok, ill give you that one" YOU STILL SPEW THE SAME **** A FEW WEEKS LATER.
Don't mistake kindness for weakness. Often times, good points are presented and they require deeper scrutiny. This is science. Because you happen to be mule-headed and dogmatic does not make you accurate. There are only more questions in the debate over mass divergence as you see it. Not answers.
All organisms are transitional, I told you this before as well.
This is not known. It is interesting to say, but they do not meet the definition of transitional. Of course, one strictly adhering to whacky-science will say all organsims are transitional, they'd have to be. Whether or not they appear to be is another thing entirely. I apologize for not retaining your nonsense.
NO, limitatons STOP AT DEATH. Define for me what differentiates a species from another? However we damn well want to differentiate it. You say there are 8 ways to speciate (which I corrected) and now you imply there is a clear divide that adaption can not cross.
No, that's the problem. We observe evolutionary limitations all the time, in countless examples. The definition of 'where' it occurs is yet another question. This is the core of the debate. I've given you three examples of limited adaptation, you can deny it, but it doesn't make you very logical and open-minded.
Get off of it, you are all over the place and tripping over yourself to try to get what you believe to seem even somewhat plausable. Fooling only yourself man.
I can understand your frustration and I'll even give you high regards for your level of devotion, but I hope you realize that you are reacting as though someone has stripped your god out from under you. You find in this frustration, an inability to effectively illustrate the plausibility of a specific facet of a theory that is 'all over the place'. You might know that for a theory to satisfy the scientific definition of "theory", it must be falsifiable. I present you information that illustrates the potential falsities and you get all unscientific on me all of a sudden.
You watch with nothing, you are not reading as we have talk about this before as well
We've talked about this before? I was in agreement with you? What you mean to say is that all you can produce is the same old ad hominem attacks and accusations with no basis or foundation of truth. Dude, you don't know squat about me. You'd do well to have at least some humility in all this. Afterall, it's not religion, it's science.
I told you how many ways there were to define speciation, it was not 8, did you forget or do you just have this same old argument saved somewhere to copy-paste it?
And yet, why is defining speciation so important? Because it lies at the core of the debate.
But wait, you won't in a few days you will say the same things over and over.
You don't want to study anything, you have fine tuned your debate and that is what you want to use, never to touch it again. This is painfully obvious.
Why? Because I see, all too frequently; opportunities for the evolutionist faithfuls to come crawling out of the woodwork in topics that have absolutely nothing to do with it. Using tactics I can only describe as proselytizing. You'll notice, when we debate aspects of science, or politics, or humanity in general; I deliberately avoid interjecting my personal religious philosophies. I believe in debating material on it's own merits w/o saying things like; "the Bible says so". I will of course, when asked-satisfy with an answer or mention these things when it's relevant to do so. In general I avoid those issues because they generally flame into needless bickering. You and many others here like you on the other hand, find it necessary to disseminate your philosophies whenever possible. When you convolute aspects of philosophy and ancient gnosticism with science, and immediately indict others of ignorance with highly debateable and observably, patently false interpretations of scientific advancement-then call it science; you do the field a great injustice rendering it to the likes of Greek mythology. I will call this behavior to the carpet every single chance I get.
And for that you are not worth my time anymore. (Or anyone else's time IMO)
likewise. When you quite proselytizing, I'll leave it alone.
ebuddy
     
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Feb 15, 2005, 12:19 PM
 
double post...
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mikellanes
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Feb 15, 2005, 12:22 PM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
I'm also interested in your supposition that all fossiles are transitional. This is certainly one way out of the argument, but it doesn't stand to logic and reason.
EDITED: Removed because I expand my position in the next post
( Last edited by mikellanes; Feb 15, 2005 at 01:40 PM. )
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mikellanes
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Feb 15, 2005, 01:39 PM
 
I don't have much time, but ill take a stab at some of this...

Originally posted by ebuddy:
There is no difference between macro evolution and micro evolution, only evolution???
There is no difference in the mechanisms, they both function the same. They words are used in some literature, but I am not seeing a divide as to what evolution is. micro and macro mean small and large respectively, it is we (scientists) who are defining what the big and small changes are.

There is an observed ceiling to adaptation.
The only thing you showed was a limit to the adaption of the specific trait, are you trying to say the organism is finished adapting or has "hit the wall" in regards to adaptation/mutations? All I see is a limited trait for a specific reason as in the sugar beet.

Punctuated equilibrium was a theory comprised by Eldredge and Gould to explain the lacking fossile record with regard to slow change. Punctuated Equilibrium was proposed as a criticism of the traditional Darwinian theory of evolution.
Darwin's original emphasis was on sympatric speciation, the slow, incremental transformation of a whole population over time until it is in effect a new species. However, Darwin also recognized that a marginal subset on the periphery of the range of a population might bud off and in a new selective environment move 'away' from the parent population, forming a new species. Eldredge and Gould's Punctuated Equilibria (not "equilibrium") pushes the "bud off" notion, suggesting that most speciation events are allopatric -- the "budding off" of a small population in a fairly localized geographical area, followed by colonization of a wider range by the new species. Thus over most of its range the new species appears "suddenly" in the fossil record even though the localized speciation process may have taken thousands of generations of incremental changes. Eldredge and Gould provided examples of speciation events where paleontologists have been lucky enough to find the small area in which the speciation actually occurred and the required intermediates were found, even though over the wider range the new species seems to appear suddenly in the fossil record when the new species subsequently colonized that wider range.

Whats that quote from The Origin of species? Something to the extent of "I can see no reason why forms might remain for long periods of time unaltered, and then undergo rapid modification."

So, no PE is not a criticism of the TOE, it is old hat, just newly defined.

Apparently a compelling display and proof of evolution eh?
...the Ohio Department of Education voted 17-0 on Tuesday to pass a "resolution of intent" to adopt science standards that would allow students to "investigate and critically analyze" Darwin's theory of evolution.
What, exactly, does one have to do with the other? Ad hominem indeed.

I'm also interested in your supposition that all fossiles are transitional. This is certainly one way out of the argument, but it doesn't stand to logic and reason.
Many say EVERY fossil is transitional between one form and another, but technically speaking it's not quite true. We don't actually know, for a given fossil, whether it represented a member of a species that was an actual intermediate (in the sense that it spawned species of its own) or whether it was a divergent line that went extinct without species-progeny.

It strikes me that there is also a frame of reference issue here. If you regard everything alive now (or at any given time) as a snapshot, then nothing is "transitional" because the snapshot is static. Every organism alive at the time is complete, functional, and distinct from every other.

Conversely, if you regard life as a process ongoing through deep time, you view every species as as something transited to from some other species, which may in turn transit to yet more species. From this "moving through time" view, everything is transitory and in transition, more or less tracking the changing geography of a moderately active planetary surface (plus or minus a few miles).

If your starting point is that everything was created all at once pretty much as-is, then the ongoing-process view isn't going to be available to you, only the snapshot view. And in that case, of course the boundaries of your imagination will require that "transitional" not be a transit in time, but rather a transit in form - some nonfunctional monster kind of halfway between two "kinds" found in the same snapshot. Since there aren't any of those, and since this model rules out anything else, there can't BE any transitional forms.

While the evidence for evolution is still in the process of being gathered, there is a *lot* of it and it all fits into one general, systematic pattern. There are still many questions to be answered, and more refinements to be added, just as Newton's laws of motion were enhanced by the additions of knowledge concerning quantum phenomena and relativity, but there have been no great questions as to the underlying validity of evolution, other than in the minds of those who are terrified that it might be so, at all.


The bat for example, may have evolved from a rodent or rat, yet what of it's retarded wings during development? Natural selection most assuredly would've seen the demise of this species.
What of the penguin with its retarded wing? Natural selection most assuredly would've seen the demise of this species.

The answer, the rat became extinct and *POOF wings occured fully functional in the new species. Pardon me if I find this lacks plausibility.
As would anyone who understands how it works. A few questions, why would the rat become extinct? Where does evolution say that? Why would wings *poof* out of no where?

I see that your problem is with the creative ability of natural selection and mutation.

The quintessential laymans book that answers this concern in just about every way possible is the book "Climbing Mount Improbable." Dawkins does flight, the eye, complex relationships like figwasps and more, showing how each could have evolved by gradual mutations and natural selection. Clearly 100% pertinent to your concern.

What does cause the evolution of flight are random mutations in animals that give them an advantage when they jump. For example, the flying squirrel has skin extentions between its arms and legs that allow it to glide farther. Eventually, those squirrels with larger skin extensions will have an advantage over those with smaller ones because they can glide farther. This is basically how evolution occurs with any trait or ability in any life-form.


indeed, micro evolution. Site for me an example of where this mechanism did not stop?
How about every known organisim? You know.. just to name one

It is interesting to say, but they do not meet the definition of transitional. Of course, one strictly adhering to whacky-science will say all organsims are transitional, they'd have to be. Whether or not they appear to be is another thing entirely. I apologize for not retaining your nonsense.
Why do they not appear to be? What are you expecting to see? Also, Define for us transitional? Every single organism and fossil on this planet meets the definition in regards to evolution.

Have you ever heard of mudskippers: http://www-biol.paisley.ac.uk/biomed...ophthalmus.htm



Sure as heck looks to me like a fish evolving into something else--something amphibious, actually.

How about something halfway between dogs and dolphins? Ever heard of Ambulocetus? Its limbs allowed it to swim and could also support it on land. It had long, powerful jaws with shark-like teeth, a small brain, and a pelvis fused to its backbone (like land-dwelling mammals but unlike whales). It may have been an ancestor of the whales - it may have evolved from animals like Mesonychid. Ambulocetus was found (in 1993) and named (in 1994) by Hans Thewissen in Pakistan.

Why are there still gaps? And why do many people think that there are even more gaps than there really are?

The first and most major reason for gaps is "stratigraphic discontinuities", meaning that fossil-bearing strata are not at all continuous. There are often large time breaks from one stratum to the next, and there are even some times for which no fossil strata have been found. For instance, the Aalenian (mid-Jurassic) has shown no known tetrapod fossils anywhere in the world, and other stratigraphic stages in the Carboniferous, Jurassic, and Cretaceous have produced only a few mangled tetrapods. Most other strata have produced at least one fossil from between 50% and 100% of the vertebrate families that we know had already arisen by then (Benton, 1989) -- so the vertebrate record at the family level is only about 75% complete, and much less complete at the genus or species level. (One study estimated that we may have fossils from as little as 3% of the species that existed in the Eocene)

The second reason for gaps is that most fossils undoubtedly have not been found. Only two continents, Europe and North America, have been adequately surveyed for fossil-bearing strata. As the other continents are slowly surveyed, many formerly mysterious gaps are being filled (e.g., the long-missing rodent/lagomorph ancestors were recently found in Asia). Of course, even in known strata, the fossils may not be uncovered unless a roadcut or quarry is built (this is how we got most of our North American Devonian fish fossils), and may not be collected unless some truly dedicated researcher spends a long, nasty chunk of time out in the sun, and an even longer time in the lab sorting and analyzing the fossils.

There's a third, unexpected reason that transitions seem so little known. It's that even when they are found, they're not popularized. The only times a transitional fossil is noticed much is if it connects two noticably different groups (such as the "walking whale" fossil reported in 1993), or if illustrates something about the tempo and mode of evolution (such as Gingerich's work). Most transitional fossils are only mentioned in the primary literature, often buried in incredibly dense and tedious "skull & bones" papers utterly inaccessible to the general public. Later references to those papers usually collapse the known species-to-species sequences to the genus or family level. The two major college-level textbooks of vertebrate paleontology (Carroll 1988, and Colbert & Morales 1991) often don't even describe anything below the family level! And finally, many of the species-to-species transitions were described too recently to have made it into the books yet.
( Last edited by mikellanes; Feb 15, 2005 at 01:48 PM. )
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Stradlater
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Feb 15, 2005, 08:53 PM
 
Originally posted by ebuddy:
There is no difference between macro evolution and micro evolution...
Still waiting for a response from you.
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mikellanes
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Feb 15, 2005, 10:49 PM
 
Originally posted by Stradlater:
Still waiting for a response from you.
Just curious, what response are you waiting on ebuddy for? I looked back but couldn't find a pertinent question that you asked? Sorry if I missed it.
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