Sunday, March 19, 2017

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Where Is Your God-Shaped Hole?


Dresden Codak

The general belief is that because humans were created by God, they want to know and serve God, even if they don't realize that's what they want. This belief is often used to explain everything from drug abuse to food addiction to depression. Humans long to know God and if they aren't fully serving and loving God, they attempt to "fill the God-shaped hole" with other things or other people.

We know that this isn't true. But if humans don't actually have a "God-shaped hole," where did god come from? How did religions form and why do they continue?

We asked some of our members for their thoughts, and to see what they have learned on the subject. Here, Saahil offers some of his insights.

How did religions come into being, and how did they survive? The answers to these questions are being answered by evolutionary biologists, and unlike those offered by the holy books, these make a lot of sense.

Scientists agree on a few key physiological and behavioral requirements for the evolution of religious belief. The most obvious requirement is a brain with a neocortex developed enough to give rise to complex religious and philosophical ideas. The ability to reason, and to associate cause and effect would have been essential in the evolution of supernatural belief. Language, or a method of symbolic communication, is also widely accepted to be an essential factor in the advancement of religion. It is quite possible though, that early human societies, dating back to our ancestral hunter-gatherers, possessed complex religions that have vanished without a trace.

Most evolutionary biologists, though, aren't content with just the evolutionary requirements. To explain the existence of a trait or behavior, one must explain how it survived from the time of its inception. This is where the water gets a little murky. On the one hand, many scientists assert that religious beliefs exist as a by-product of an advanced brain capable of imagining and rationalizing, which are considered higher order brain functions with many selective advantages.

On the other hand, many others think that religions offered, and perhaps even continue to offer, a selective advantage. I am personally inclined towards the latter. The selective advantage of religion would reside in its ability to alter the behavior of individuals in a group. Early humans lived in large groups, and as with all social animals, altruism is beneficial, if not essential, for the survival of large groups. Religion may have served to shape and reinforce the morals of a tribe, increasing the cohesiveness of such groups and conferring such tribes an advantage over those that were less cohesive. As early human tribes grew, so their morality evolved into religions, which used the fear of ever-watchful ancestors or gods to inhibit selfishness and increase cooperation.

It is quite possible and indeed likely, that religions which emerged later evolved to include elements of racism and violence to make the tribe more aggressive, helping them to conquer foreigners - a classical selective advantage. The question of the evolution of monotheism, however, is open to debate. Since even today a large number of polytheistic and pagan religions exist, it may be argued that monotheism may have flourished simply because the major monotheistic religions happened to grow out of each other.

Why do you think belief in god(s) or some sort of religion is so common? Do you have a different theory or understanding of the evolution of god(s)? We'd like to hear it.


60 comments :

Henry JoY said...

Simplified allegorical explanations of complex fundamental human concerns which are excessively taxing to, or beyond, either the individual's or the collective's understanding will in all likelihood afford advantage ... more time to carry water, chop wood and more time for other more productively beneficial and advantageous pursuits.

To the degree that simplified explanations absolve the individual, and particularly so untrained or unsupported individuals, from excessive rumination it will, in all probability, afford greater propensity for good emotional and mental health allowing for better outcomes when dealing with the more mundane challenges that life invariably throws up.

At both the individual and collective level religious thought and practice brought evolutionary advantage.

DaithiD said...

I bet you say that to all the girls...

Henry JoY said...

Up them stairs and down with them tights! (^_^)

Wolfsbane said...

Interesting article! But do any of you atheists follow through with its logic?

I mean, if religion initiated and survived because its delusion had evolutionary advantages in inhibiting destructive behaviour (hence enhancing survival of the species); and later morphed to include tribal aggression to foreigners (selecting the more fit tribes) - then what is its value now, now that we have advanced so far as to reflect on ourselves and to discover there is no God/gods, just evolution in motion?

Is it of value in keeping the masses inhibited, until they are required to become aggressive, at the prompting of the wise elite who know there is no God/gods? The opiate of the masses? Ought we to expose the delusion and free the masses from it? Or continue to use it as a tool of control (of course, all for the best possible motives)?

Whatever the answer to that, if there is no God/gods, then there can be no logical 'ought'. Now that we know there is no God/gods, we are free to do as we please, or rather do what we can get away with. Morality can only be what we feel comfortable doing, and will change with our age and experience. No individual or society can have a better morality than another - it is only a matter of our feelings.

Indeed, the most rational individual will be able to free themselves from all moral considerations, recognizing that they are merely self-reflective, thinking animals, and are now free to break the chains of evolutionary conditioning that the lesser animals are guided by.

Such enlightened ones will feel free to leave morality for the little people, and associate with other enlightened ones purely on the basis of mutual self-interest. Ideal Capitalist or Marxist elites.


The author asks:
'Why do you think belief in god(s) or some sort of religion is so common?'

Because it IS in the heart of everyman.

'Do you have a different theory or understanding of the evolution of god(s)? We'd like to hear it.'

Sure. God made the universe and all in it - the angelic realm, man and beasts and whole biosphere. Some of the angels rebelled and later led the parents of mankind to rebel also. Some of mankind God kept fully aware of Himself; the rest did not want to remember God and turned to their own ways. God gave them over to worship of bits of the creation - idols made of stone and wood. But those idols represented the 'gods' fallen man feared, the spiritual beings they sensed were there. They tried to fill the'God-shaped hole' with their own choice of gods. The idols represented these demons/fallen angels.

How do I know this? I read it in the Bible, which the God whom I encountered assures me is His word.

Henry JoY said...

Wolfie,

come down from that cross ... I could put that timber and them nails to far better use!

Are there no moral humanists and no moral atheists?
Aren't there gangs of frauds in every church including those who illicitly plant their seed during the week and then on the sabbath go on bended knee only to pray for crop failure.

There are many reasons that the hole exists. I have covered how people use ideology and religion to fill those holes on here ad infinitum.

Go away and say your prayers and give me head peace.

Wolfsbane said...

Henry, I don't want to give you a headache, but please understand what I am saying.

I'm not saying all religionists are moral people - many are the frauds you mention. I merely say that the reality exists - some do have a proper relationship with God.

Nor do deny that many humanists and atheists are moral people. I merely say they have no logical reason for holding that anything is more or less moral than another; that is, there can be no objective moral code for a humanist or atheist. They can only invent one for themselves, or adopt one they have found. But it is just a code, not the description of an actual good/evil.

Steve R said...

Wolfsbane,

"I mean, if religion initiated and survived because its delusion had evolutionary advantages in inhibiting destructive behaviour (hence enhancing survival of the species); and later morphed to include tribal aggression to foreigners (selecting the more fit tribes) - then what is its value now, now that we have advanced so far as to reflect on ourselves and to discover there is no God/gods, just evolution in motion?"

Very little save being a mental crutch for those who need it. The World is realising 'science' (and by that word I mean the method) has far more coherent and plausible answers to the majority of their questions.

"s it of value in keeping the masses inhibited, until they are required to become aggressive, at the prompting of the wise elite who know there is no God/gods? The opiate of the masses? Ought we to expose the delusion and free the masses from it? Or continue to use it as a tool of control (of course, all for the best possible motives)?"

Mixing Marx serves no purpose here, are you really implying the 'elite' have any sort of benevolent attitude toward the people?

"Whatever the answer to that, if there is no God/gods, then there can be no logical 'ought'. Now that we know there is no God/gods, we are free to do as we please, or rather do what we can get away with. Morality can only be what we feel comfortable doing, and will change with our age and experience. No individual or society can have a better morality than another - it is only a matter of our feelings."

Typical Religious waffle. By trying to suggest that being an Atheist means we have no moral compass and are 'free to do what we like' you display utter ignorance. 'Morality' does not come from a fictitious divine, if you lack empathy it's because you are a c*nt and there are plenty of religious c*nts out there!

"Indeed, the most rational individual will be able to free themselves from all moral considerations, recognizing that they are merely self-reflective, thinking animals, and are now free to break the chains of evolutionary conditioning that the lesser animals are guided by.

Such enlightened ones will feel free to leave morality for the little people, and associate with other enlightened ones purely on the basis of mutual self-interest. Ideal Capitalist or Marxist elites."

Why would a rational individual free themselves from compassion and empathy? Your statement makes no sense.

"Because it IS in the heart of everyman.

'Do you have a different theory or understanding of the evolution of god(s)? We'd like to hear it.'

Sure. God made the universe and all in it - the angelic realm, man and beasts and whole biosphere. Some of the angels rebelled and later led the parents of mankind to rebel also. Some of mankind God kept fully aware of Himself; the rest did not want to remember God and turned to their own ways. God gave them over to worship of bits of the creation - idols made of stone and wood. But those idols represented the 'gods' fallen man feared, the spiritual beings they sensed were there. They tried to fill the'God-shaped hole' with their own choice of gods. The idols represented these demons/fallen angels.

How do I know this? I read it in the Bible, which the God whom I encountered assures me is His word. "

So....you are believing what a book said that was written, re-written, edited, and translated from many different languages many, MANY times, from stories told second hand to people who weren't there, from a bunch of illiterate goat herders who were b*stardizing earlier desert myths?

And while we are on that can you explain the startling similarities between the Jesus story and Dionysus, Mithra, Osiris up to and including the resurrection myth?

That kind of nonsense may convince you but it certainly does NOT convince me.





DaithiD said...

wolfsbane, the first ever rebel in the Bible sucessfully became ruler of his own dominion (Lucifer). Given God in the old testament admitted to massacring whole villages, and murdered innocents. Maybe Lucifer and other fallen angels have been given a bad rap, maybe they just objected to Gods whims, and have been trying to save us all along?

Henry JoY said...

Wolfsbane,

I can freely acknowledge that there are some people of faith who "do have a proper relationship with God".
As a rule those who have a proper relationship with their god are decent folk. They're neighbourly and civic minded to boot.
One can, you know, be atheist and yet not doggedly anti-religion. As far as I'm concerned the theists can practise any religion they want, as long as they restrict their practice to themselves and don't impose it on me or strive for privileged recognition within the civil affairs of state.

In the same way that objectively there's no colour in the universe there are no moral events. Cones and rods colour our universe. Similarly conditioned-in perceptions and moral evaluations, in service of herd cohesion and advantage, colour our experiences and behaviour. That some people create a narrative about burning bushes and handed down tablets of stone around that is OK by me, and yet not for me.




Wolfsbane said...

Steve R said:
'Mixing Marx serves no purpose here, are you really implying the 'elite' have any sort of benevolent attitude toward the people?'

Far from it!

'By trying to suggest that being an Atheist means we have no moral compass and are 'free to do what we like' you display utter ignorance. 'Morality' does not come from a fictitious divine, if you lack empathy it's because you are a c*nt and there are plenty of religious c*nts out there!'

You are here making a moral judgment of those who lack your moral code. That's understandable - you are biologically conditioned by evolution to think that way. A natural instinct. But now that you can reflect on your instinct, you should be able to recognize that there is no actual moral good or evil, just your biology at work. You should see that you are free to ignore those instincts, as you are not an unreasoning animal. Yet here you speak as if your gut feelings identified real good and evil!

'Why would a rational individual free themselves from compassion and empathy? Your statement makes no sense.'

It should make sense to those who know compassion and empathy are mere biological conditioning caused by evolution, not items of a real morality, a morality that exists outside of ourselves and to which mankind is subject to.

'So....you are believing what a book said that was written, re-written, edited, and translated from many different languages many, MANY times, from stories told second hand to people who weren't there, from a bunch of illiterate goat herders who were b*stardizing earlier desert myths?'

God was there - and He told the writers what to record. They weren't bastardizing any myths - those myths arose alongside the reality, from fallen men who wanted their own gods.

'And while we are on that can you explain the startling similarities between the Jesus story and Dionysus, Mithra, Osiris up to and including the resurrection myth?'

You have been reading too many atheist conspiracy sites. Check out the real scholarly ones - secular as well as religious - before you repeat those myths.

Here's a popular site to get you started:

https://www.gotquestions.org/Jesus-myth.html

Wolfsbane said...

DaithiD said...
'wolfsbane, the first ever rebel in the Bible sucessfully became ruler of his own dominion (Lucifer).'

Correct.

'Given God in the old testament admitted to massacring whole villages, and murdered innocents. Maybe Lucifer and other fallen angels have been given a bad rap, maybe they just objected to Gods whims, and have been trying to save us all along?'

There were no innocents after the Fall. All were spiritually dead sinners, even infants. Obviously, the adults had amassed greater sins in greater numbers than the infants. But all were also God's creation, and He has the right to call them home any time He chooses. The destruction of sinners en masse (as at the Flood) or in limited but substantial numbers (the Conquest of Canaan) is His right as the righteous Judge and Creator.

More importantly, God had mercy on some when He could justly have destroyed all. And even among the killed, I have every reason to believe that all infants are redeemed by Him and enter eternal life when they die.

Wolfsbane said...

Henry JoY said...
'as long as they restrict their practice to themselves and don't impose it on me or strive for privileged recognition within the civil affairs of state.'

I'm with you on that. Much evil has resulted from those who think they are called to impose on others.

'In the same way that objectively there's no colour in the universe there are no moral events. Cones and rods colour our universe. Similarly conditioned-in perceptions and moral evaluations, in service of herd cohesion and advantage, colour our experiences and behaviour.'

Yes, that's what I'm saying about the evolutionary logic. I'm therefore pointing out that you, as a rational person, are able to see that such 'conditioned-in perceptions' are not real moral truths and that you are free to reject any you feel like. You may then be a ruthless dictator, if you have the wit and courage to reach for it, or you may play along with the moral code and be a nice guy, except when it suits.

It is your insistence that some things are actually good or evil that is illogical (for a non-theist).

Steve R said...

Wolfsbane,

" You should see that you are free to ignore those instincts, as you are not an unreasoning animal. Yet here you speak as if your gut feelings identified real good and evil!"

Good and Evil are human conceptions, nothing more. Hitler the Christian thought he was doing 'Good', as did many other leaders. One only needs look at the US and the self proclaimed evangelical Protestants doing unspeakable ill to their fellow men in far off countries by bombing the sh*te out of them. US soldiers spoke of being 'on a crusade' in Iraq, presumably they thought they were doing 'Good'?


'God was there - and He told the writers what to record. They weren't bastardizing any myths - those myths arose alongside the reality, from fallen men who wanted their own gods.'

That's a bold claim. Prove 'God' was there. The burden of claim is ALWAYS on the one who claims something by the way.

"And while we are on that can you explain the startling similarities between the Jesus story and Dionysus, Mithra, Osiris up to and including the resurrection myth?'

You have been reading too many atheist conspiracy sites. Check out the real scholarly ones - secular as well as religious - before you repeat those myths."

Erm, no it's really not. I suggest you check out scholar works regarding Jesus in comparative mythology. You will be amazed to find your 'Son of God'..is in fact nothing more than 'Solar Diety' worship. I understand you may hold deep convictions but without wanting to rock your boat too much...it's all bollocks. I've read many scholarly works and they make very convincing cases for their position. The only ones that don't stand up to scrutiny are those with vested interests like the laughable 'Got questions' site you linked too. Why don't you just post a link to the utterly ludicrous and outright lying site 'Answers in Genesis' and have done with it?



AM said...

If it is god's right to murder the innocent then fuck god. That religious derangement is something in need of treatment not discussion.

Henry JoY said...

Wolfsbane,

Your opinion that I insist that some things are good or evil is off the mark.
Rather than evaluation along a good/bad axis or a right/wrong axis I prefer to evaluate along a useful/not useful one. Nothing illogical to that.

As you might say yourself, you have faith. I on the other hand prefer the realm of reason.
I doubt, even with AM's feedback above, that you can begin to fathom how unreasonable and whacky some of your utterances come across to some of us.

Yet at some level I am grateful to you also; the obsessive ideations presented by yourself (and indeed those of a certain other contributor on here) at times evokes a deeply felt-sense of relief in me ... a deeply felt-sense of relief which serves as a salutary reminder of how fcuked-up I once was too!!!

Sometimes the gaps between positions are unbridgeable in the immediacy. And I guess that's where we're at Wolfsbane. Of course I'll afford right of reply yet I feel I'm done on this one.

Wolfsbane said...

Steve R said...

'Good and Evil are human conceptions, nothing more.'

Yes, that is what I'm saying atheism must hold. One human has this view of morality, another has that. But neither can logically say there is a real good or evil, just that this is what they feel about each event. The theist has his/her morality revealed( or imagined), and can logically say that all conflicting claims to morality are false. So unless you make yourself to be a god, you cannot say conflicting moralities are false. You can only say they are different from yours.

'Hitler the Christian'

He wasn't. He was a politician who used the term for his audience, but his 'Tabletalk' reveals the pagan nature of his worldview, and his SS ceremonies confirm it.

'thought he was doing 'Good', as did many other leaders. One only needs look at the US and the self proclaimed evangelical Protestants doing unspeakable ill to their fellow men in far off countries by bombing the sh*te out of them. US soldiers spoke of being 'on a crusade' in Iraq, presumably they thought they were doing 'Good'?'

I agree - unjust wars can be sold to even good men if the facts are selected just right. Some wars are just, some are not, others a mixture. It can be a difficult call at times.

'That's a bold claim. Prove 'God' was there. The burden of claim is ALWAYS on the one who claims something by the way.'

It would be a burden of proof IF I were attempting to prove God's existence to you. I'm not. I'm merely telling you what I know - you have the choice of investigating God's existence for yourself.

'Erm, no it's really not. I suggest you check out scholar works regarding Jesus in comparative mythology. You will be amazed to find your 'Son of God'..is in fact nothing more than 'Solar Diety' worship. I understand you may hold deep convictions but without wanting to rock your boat too much...it's all bollocks. I've read many scholarly works and they make very convincing cases for their position. The only ones that don't stand up to scrutiny are those with vested interests like the laughable 'Got questions' site you linked too. Why don't you just post a link to the utterly ludicrous and outright lying site 'Answers in Genesis' and have done with it?'

Don't believe me, try an atheist site: https://richarddawkins.net/2014/04/seeking-hard-evidence-for-the-similarity-of-the-horus-and-jesus-myths/

On a related issue, and if you have a bit of time, here's the excellent atheist scholar Bart Ehrman and the excellent Evangelical scholar James White in debate:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=moHInA9fAsI



Steve R said...

Wolfsbane,

"'Good and Evil are human conceptions, nothing more.'

Yes, that is what I'm saying atheism must hold"

No, 'Atheism' does not. Atheism is nothing more than a lack of a belief in a diety, NOTHING else. It's not a belief system or adherent to such.

"One human has this view of morality, another has that. But neither can logically say there is a real good or evil, just that this is what they feel about each event."

Yes, though some 'events' are quite clearly more evocative of emotion more than others.

"The theist has his/her morality revealed( or imagined), and can logically say that all conflicting claims to morality are false."

Logically to the theist that is. Their opinion on matters is seemingly based on a mental crutch of a 'divine being' being responsible for said morality. To me that seems a delusion in itself. Imagine if I decide that my imaginary friend said that it is OK to kill ginger haired people but only on the second Tuesday's of the month. I'd be shipped off to the nut house and rightly so. Claim some sort of divine mandate and you are held in veneration.

" So unless you make yourself to be a god, you cannot say conflicting moralities are false. You can only say they are different from yours."

Morality comes from Man, I work on ethics. Where is the morality in a god that murders infants?

"It would be a burden of proof IF I were attempting to prove God's existence to you. I'm not. I'm merely telling you what I know - you have the choice of investigating God's existence for yourself."

I am a former Christian, and you have said nothing to shake me from my awakening.

"Don't believe me, try an atheist site: https://richarddawkins.net/2014/04/seeking-hard-evidence-for-the-similarity-of-the-horus-and-jesus-myths/"

Not entirely sure why I would look on a blog of a prominent evolutionary biologist for similarities between the Jesus story and Mithra, Horus or one of the many others though I did and found a list of comments by other users. One of them reminded me that the story of Noah and the Flood was a plagiarism stolen from the Epic of Gilgamesh, which I completely forgot about so thanks for that. Not sure what you intended though.

One of the things people of faith do is confuse one of the branches of the Natural Sciences with another, whether through ignorance or genuine confusion I am not sure, but it sure is daft!

Bart Ehrman-- I copy and paste this from Wikipedia as it imports all that needs to be said by a brilliant textual critique...

"In Misquoting Jesus Ehrman recounts becoming a born-again, fundamentalist Christian as a teenager. He recounts being certain in his youthful enthusiasm that God had inspired the wording of the Bible and protected its texts from all error. His desire to understand the original words of the Bible led him to the study of ancient languages and also textual criticism. During his graduate studies, however, he became convinced that there are contradictions and discrepancies in the biblical manuscripts that could not be harmonized or reconciled. He remained a liberal Christian for 15 years but later became an agnostic atheist after struggling with the philosophical problems of evil and suffering.[1]


There you have it. One of the greatest experts in Biblical Texts, even blinkered by the mania of religious righteous fever, is forced to admit....it's bollocks.







Wolfsbane said...

Henry JoY said...

'Your opinion that I insist that some things are good or evil is off the mark.
Rather than evaluation along a good/bad axis or a right/wrong axis I prefer to evaluate along a useful/not useful one. Nothing illogical to that.'

But I said already that it is only the good/evil and right/wrong evaluations that are illogical for an atheist. Useful/not useful are indeed logical. It's just that you then have to accept the likelihood that exterminating a class or culture that hinders what you want your state to be will be most useful at some point.

But glad we agree on the difference between morality and usefulness.

Wolfsbane said...

Steve R said...

'Atheism is nothing more than a lack of a belief in a diety, NOTHING else. It's not a belief system or adherent to such.'

It has necessary beliefs arising from its lack of belief in a deity. IF there is no deity, then there can be moral system outside of the material universe, and morality can only be whatever we or another intelligence feels good about at the time. One person feels this, another that - and each may change with time.

'Yes, though some 'events' are quite clearly more evocative of emotion more than others.'

Indeed - and that is the individualistic criterium that is called 'morality' by atheists. Well, usefulness/non-usefulness may come into it too, as Henry reminds us.

'Their opinion on matters is seemingly based on a mental crutch of a 'divine being' being responsible for said morality. To me that seems a delusion in itself.'

If it is a delusion, of course it is a faulty morality - but it is still a logical one for the person believing it. Being logical does not mean one is right!

'Morality comes from Man, I work on ethics. Where is the morality in a god that murders infants?'

Your ethics is part of your morality. A morality for which you as an atheist have no rational grounds. And the God who kills infants is the God who created them - their lives are in His hand, to call home when He pleases.

'I am a former Christian, and you have said nothing to shake me from my awakening.'

That's not my problem. I am only called to tell you the truth - what you do with it is up to you.

'Not entirely sure why I would look on a blog of a prominent evolutionary biologist for similarities between the Jesus story and Mithra, Horus or one of the many others though I did and found a list of comments by other users.'

Richard Dawkins is not only a prominent evolutionary biologist, he is a very prominent anti-theist. Just the sort of site that you might be open to.

'One of them reminded me that the story of Noah and the Flood was a plagiarism stolen from the Epic of Gilgamesh, which I completely forgot about so thanks for that. Not sure what you intended though.'

If you read the comments more carefully, you would have noted that most accepted that the whole field of who-wrote-what-first-and-why is disputed among scholars. And the priority of the Epic over the Genesis Flood account can only be assumed on the basis that it is recorded in older media than the Genesis account. But that assumes the Genesis documents we have are the earliest record; however, it may have been recorded in media we have not yet found or that has perished. It's like thinking Plato's stuff originated c.AD900, the date of the earliest copies we have. But we rightly accept he lived 427-347 B.C., 1200 yrs earlier.

'Bart Ehrman-- I copy and paste this from Wikipedia as it imports all that needs to be said by a brilliant textual critique...
"In Misquoting Jesus Ehrman recounts becoming a born-again, fundamentalist Christian as a teenager. He recounts being certain in his youthful enthusiasm that God had inspired the wording of the Bible and protected its texts from all error. His desire to understand the original words of the Bible led him to the study of ancient languages and also textual criticism. During his graduate studies, however, he became convinced that there are contradictions and discrepancies in the biblical manuscripts that could not be harmonized or reconciled. He remained a liberal Christian for 15 years but later became an agnostic atheist after struggling with the philosophical problems of evil and suffering.[1]
There you have it. One of the greatest experts in Biblical Texts, even blinkered by the mania of religious righteous fever, is forced to admit....it's bollocks.'

That's why I linked you to him. He's an apostate like yourself - but he does not hold to the mythical Jesus.


Henry JoY said...

Wolfie,

sorry to disappoint you ... the Year Zero concept has been shown not to work.
Any attempt to repeat it would be illogical. It would be morally reprehensible to the degree that it would be unachievable and unrealistic.

DaithiD said...

wolfsbane, Im a recent convert to the idea there is no good or evil that can be determined from the Bible. God favoured those who killed their freinds and stole their wives. God gives himself the right to kill those he himself has deemed as sinful, and this sin inherited.Giving his only son to sacrifice doesnt cut it, he is "God", he could make another being omnipotent and all powerful etc, he chooses not to to punish us further.
All the Devil wanted to offer Eve was knowledge, and for this God gives himself the right to barbarity. If there are ethics to follow in the Bible, it probably comes from the Devil. But this human deference to illogical things is arguably the same mental impairment that allows despotic rulers/systems to leach of their citizens without fear of being removed. Religion gets humans into the practice of learned hopelessness, and pretending they dont see the obvious.

Wolfsbane said...

Henry JoY said...

'sorry to disappoint you ... the Year Zero concept has been shown not to work.
Any attempt to repeat it would be illogical. It would be morally reprehensible to the degree that it would be unachievable and unrealistic.'

That was an attempt at a total rewrite of society, an obviously crazy endeavour. But to exterminate the Jews, that was well in the realms of possibility. Hitler's decision to attempt the extermination of the Slavs at the same time was the source of his failure. Stalin was much more successful in the extermination of the Kulaks as a class.

But my point is that stuff like this can be logical, if one has no sense of good/evil, just utility. The treatment of the natives Western empires was totally immoral, but very useful for the imperial interests.

Wolfsbane said...

DaithiD said...
'Im a recent convert to the idea there is no good or evil that can be determined from the Bible. God favoured those who killed their freinds and stole their wives.'

No, He didn't. He punished David for that.

'God gives himself the right to kill those he himself has deemed as sinful, and this sin inherited.Giving his only son to sacrifice doesnt cut it, he is "God", he could make another being omnipotent and all powerful etc, he chooses not to to punish us further.'

Yes, God could have chosen not to create beings with free-will. He chose otherwise - as is His right as the holy Creator. And He chose to redeem some of those rebels by bearing their due punishment Himself. An act of mercy and grace toward evil beings.

'All the Devil wanted to offer Eve was knowledge, and for this God gives himself the right to barbarity.'

No, all the Devil wanted to do was trick Eve into rebellion against God, knowing that would kill her in body and spirit.

'If there are ethics to follow in the Bible, it probably comes from the Devil.'

The ethics of the Bible ennobles mankind, restrains them from selfishness and exploitation. It warns man of the consequences of not loving God with all our being, and of not loving our neighbours as ourselves. But more than just ethics, the Bible brings us the gospel message to repent and trust in Christ so that we will be forgiven our sins and set free from bondage to them; free to serve our God and our fellowman.

'But this human deference to illogical things is arguably the same mental impairment that allows despotic rulers/systems to leach of their citizens without fear of being removed.'

Yes, Christianity teaches us to obey the governing authorities, even if they are oppressive, leaving it to God to remove them. However, the governing authorities in democracies are ultimately the people, so Christians have at times felt free to rebel and set up new governments. The English Civil Wars; the Glorious Revolution; the American War of Independance, etc. But these are judgment calls, and sometimes good people end up on opposite sides.

'Religion gets humans into the practice of learned hopelessness, and pretending they dont see the obvious.'

False religions may well do. Biblical Christianity keeps our eyes wide open.

Henry JoY said...

Wolfie

oh ffs,
your write and I'm wrong.

How silly of me to think that utility and social cohesion were the drivers of behaviour whilst all the time the truth was there before me in the Bible ... a simple moral code carved in stone.

I repent, I repent ... otherwise I'm doomed to eternal damnation. I'll give up all me auld sins, be born again and bask in His benevolent and loving light.

Happy now?

I suppose you already know the difference between a Saved Christian and a terrorist ... but for those that don't I'll repeat it here Sometimes you can negotiate with a terrorist!

Wolfsbane said...

Henry JoY said...


'oh ffs,
your write and I'm wrong.
How silly of me to think that utility and social cohesion were the drivers of behaviour whilst all the time the truth was there before me in the Bible ... a simple moral code carved in stone.'

Now, now, Henry - I'm not questioning that utility and social cohesion were the drivers of your behaviour. I'm simply pointing out that such a code is amoral. It can logically be used to justify mass-murder and all sorts of oppression most of us would condemn.

You may criticize my source of morality as being an imaginary construct, but it recognizes an actual good/evil that applies universally, while your's can logically apply to the individual, family or tribe only. All the rest of mankind are there to be abused.

But don't feel obliged to continue - I leave you to reflect and thank you for your comments.

DaithiD said...

wolfsbane, I know its not instructions for Bible followers to emulate (so different to Islam in this respect), but if you cant condemn genocide without reservation, in ethical terms its as useful as seatbelts that work except during a crash.

Wolfsbane said...

DaithiD said...

'wolfsbane, I know its not instructions for Bible followers to emulate (so different to Islam in this respect), but if you cant condemn genocide without reservation, in ethical terms its as useful as seatbelts that work except during a crash.'

I can condemn genocide without reservation, as it relates to man. We have no authority to exterminate another ethnic group. But God owns all of us, and when He appointed Israel under Joshua to exterminate the Amalekites He had every right to do so. That was God directing human affairs specifically. The Israelites had/have no authority to exterminate those they might choose.

DaithiD said...

wolfsbane, when AM asked me that question as a then person of faith (would you condemn genocide in the OT even though its not an instruction for future followers), the answer you have just given was what I feared was the authentic religious response.

Steve R said...

More religious evasions, revisionist claptrap and attempts to justify the indefensible.

Home sweet home!

Anthony if ever I forsake the blue skies down here and decide to come home can I live in the South with you??? (I would ask Larry but I think he'd steal my lunch money lol)

frankie said...

Wolfie,

I will go along with your intelligent design and God theory for a minute or three. And I will even throw in that when God clapped his hands, that was actually the real big bang. I have taken for granted we are made in his likeness, with free will.

But intelligent design/God theroy is flawed..

What's the deal with having a shit? What purpose does it have? At least when a horse has a crap, it can be spread on a flower bed and make roses smell sweeter. Why didn't God make our shit smell like roses or at least make it useful, for example why didn't he make it so when we shit, it could be dried out and we could put our own logs on the fire without chopping down trees and cutting them up to into logs.

As far as I have figured out, when all is down and dusted...having a shit serves on purpose what so ever and wastes time..

And that in my humble opinion, is the flaw in intelligent design.

Henry JoY said...

Frankie,

to grain nutrition we must eat, digest and defecate.
Similarly to develop and grow intellectually one needs to take in information & ideas, chew them over and digest them as best we can, extracting what's nutritious and useful, and allowing the shit to pass through.
Unfortunately, like all processes, this can become corrupted and some end up venerating their own crap.

We are biased towards the smell of our own shit. The aroma of our own seems sweeter or certainly less repugnant!

larry hughes said...

Henry Joy

'We are biased towards the smell of our own shit. The aroma of our own seems sweeter or certainly less repugnant'!

How illuminating. I though you just spent too much time in the WP heartbreak hotel.

DaithiD said...

Why didn't God make our shit smell like roses or at least make it useful, for example why didn't he make it so when we shit,

I dunno thats right Frankie, I could show you some videos where people do just that,mainly Germans it seems...
Maybe it would be a sort of road to Damascus moment for you?

Wolfsbane said...

frankie said...


'I will go along with your intelligent design and God theory for a minute or three. And I will even throw in that when God clapped his hands, that was actually the real big bang. I have taken for granted we are made in his likeness, with free will.
But intelligent design/God theroy is flawed..
What's the deal with having a shit? What purpose does it have? At least when a horse has a crap, it can be spread on a flower bed and make roses smell sweeter. Why didn't God make our shit smell like roses or at least make it useful, for example why didn't he make it so when we shit, it could be dried out and we could put our own logs on the fire without chopping down trees and cutting them up to into logs.
As far as I have figured out, when all is down and dusted...having a shit serves on purpose what so ever and wastes time..
And that in my humble opinion, is the flaw in intelligent design.'

Yes, that's a pertinent question for both IDers and other Creationists. It would indeed call into question the creation of a perfect world, if what we have today is what was originally created. Human waste is repulsive, and dangerous to our health.

But as originally created, the biological processes would not have been dealing with any dangerous pathogens or parasites. Only after the Fall were the biological processes corrupted/distorted to any extent. Decay and death of animal and human life came into the formerly perfect biosphere.

In man's original state, we have every reason to think our waste products would have been immediately useful for supplying nutrients to the plant life.

DaithiD said...

ps My last comment is gobbledegook, I must of conflated a few posts and came to a weird interpretation, its scary it made sense at the time.

Steve R said...

Wolfsbane,

Just exactly how old do you think the Earth is?

DaithiD said...

Steve R, the main message of the Church in Mass is always a claim of superior ethics. I cant ever remember this 10,000 year claim, I think most followers could concede these and still retain their faith given the allegorical nature of much of the text, and still retain the idea they are pursuing superior morals. The ethical point are neccesarilly not allegorical, they are explicit. I think if those of faith are challenged on this it might have more effect, Ive talked of the non overlapping magesteria before.If you get them to consider they are pursuing something amoral, then it might have more effect.

Steve R said...

DaithiD,

I have no doubt Wolfie is away studiously looking up various ways of answering my direct question but in a way that will not conflict with his faith. It will not stand up to any scrutiny whatsoever though.

I have also encountered many evangelical Prods like Wolfie before, and as HJ points out, they cannot be negotiated with. Much like The Terminator, in the face of physical evidence and reasoned logic they still cannot be reasoned with, cannot be bargained with, and absolutely will not stop until you are dead!!

Wolfsbane said...

Steve R said...
'Wolfsbane,
Just exactly how old do you think the Earth is?'

Under 10K. Sorry I can't be more exact.

I base that belief on the upper limits one could expect from the chronologies in the Bible. The Bible is my touchstone for every matter it addresses.

But for many years I also have followed the scientific issues involved. I note the current consensus against a Young Earth and for evolution, but I also note the dissenting voices from scientists who present conflicting evidence. A recent example is reported on here:

http://creation.com/double-decade-dinosaur-disquiet

Steve R said...

Yep, I thought you'd say something like that.

Nice try with the 'dissenting voices from scientists who present conflicting evidence though', this is nothing more than wishful thinking(!) on your part.

There is NO debate in scientific circles regarding the age of the Earth. Not ONE single coherent argument for a young earth whatsoever. Posting lies, half-truths and propaganda from 'Creation.com' is not helping you. A quick google destroys all pretend arguments from those 'scientists' on that webpage (incidentally David Catchpoole was a flipping plant physiologist! Here's a hint for accuracy- ASK A GEOLOGIST!)

Your convoluted and verbose answers to questions with regards to religion as shown above, are nothing more than smokescreens that blind you to the harsh reality of existence. But deep down I suspect you already know that. Religion is comforting, but stop letting it blind you to the truth!

Wolfsbane said...

Steve R, I said there are dissenting voices from scientists who present conflicting evidence. That is a fact. You may not like it that there are scientists in the relevant fields who dispute the consensus, but it's a fact. You may not like the scientific arguments they use to dispute the consensus, but the arguments exist.

I posted the creationist link to show that the deep time model has its problems, just as the young earth model does. I could have posted a consensus science link to show the same thing:
http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/dinosaur-shocker-115306469/

So you see the author of the creationist article being a plant physiologist (Dr David Catchpoole) or the author of the Smithsonian article (Helen Fields) being a science writer is of no importance. The work they refer to is the issue.

I'm not arguing the young earth science - just showing that it is there and held by scientists just as qualified as those of the consensus view.

You are barking up the wrong tree when you look to geologists to prove deep time. They get their markers from the scientists who establish by radio-dating the age of the rocks. Observed rates of decay of radioisotopes are used, on the assumption that those rates have been constant over the ages.

This man:
http://creation.com/john-baumgardner

authored this article which may be of interest on the subject:

'Do radioisotope methods yield trustworthy relative ages for the earth’s rocks?'
http://creation.com/radioisotope-methods-and-rock-ages


Scientists alive today who accept the biblical account of creation:

http://creation.com/creation-scientists#presentsci

Steve R said...

Oh Wolfie,

"Steve R, I said there are dissenting voices from scientists who present conflicting evidence. That is a fact. You may not like it that there are scientists in the relevant fields who dispute the consensus, but it's a fact. You may not like the scientific arguments they use to dispute the consensus, but the arguments exist."


Nope, they don't. No serious credible scientist would entertain such deranged lies as a 'young earth'- less than 10k as you say, other than those from 'Biblical Diploma mills' that hand out 'degrees' or those scientists who have chosen to ignore cognitive dissonance in favour of absurd religious timelines.

"I posted the creationist link to show that the deep time model has its problems, just as the young earth model does. I could have posted a consensus science link to show the same thing:
http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/dinosaur-shocker-115306469/"

You clearly don't bother to read what you post so I have taken the liberty and extracted the important parts of that article, which you either willfully ignored or just didn't read..

>>"In the course of testing a B. rex bone fragment further, Schweitzer asked her lab technician, Jennifer Wittmeyer, to put it in weak acid, which slowly dissolves bone, including fossilized bone—but not soft tissues. One Friday night in January 2004, Wittmeyer was in the lab as usual. She took out a fossil chip that had been in the acid for three days and put it under the microscope to take a picture. “[The chip] was curved so much, I couldn’t get it in focus,” Wittmeyer recalls. She used forceps to flatten it. “My forceps kind of sunk into it, made a little indentation and it curled back up. I was like, stop it!” Finally, through her irritation, she realized what she had: a fragment of dinosaur soft tissue left behind when the mineral bone around it had dissolved. Suddenly Schweitzer and Wittmeyer were dealing with something no one else had ever seen. For a couple of weeks, Wittmeyer said, it was like Christmas every day."

Quite clearly she stumbled on something nobody else had before, red blood cells WITHIN the bone while the rest decayed over millenia. The important word here Wolfie, 'Within'.

But her next paragraph made me laugh..

"Young-earth creationists also see Schweitzer’s work as revolutionary, but in an entirely different way. They first seized upon Schweitzer’s work after she wrote an article for the popular science magazine Earth in 1997 about possible red blood cells in her dinosaur specimens. Creation magazine claimed that Schweitzer’s research was “powerful testimony against the whole idea of dinosaurs living millions of years ago. It speaks volumes for the Bible’s account of a recent creation.”

This drives Schweitzer crazy. Geologists have established that the Hell Creek Formation, where B. rex was found, is 68 million years old, and so are the bones buried in it. She’s horrified that some Christians accuse her of hiding the true meaning of her data. “They treat you really bad,” she says. “They twist your words and they manipulate your data.” For her, science and religion represent two different ways of looking at the world; invoking the hand of God to explain natural phenomena breaks the rules of science. After all, she says, what God asks is faith, not evidence. “If you have all this evidence and proof positive that God exists, you don’t need faith."

Steve R said...

Wolfie...part II

"So you see the author of the creationist article being a plant physiologist (Dr David Catchpoole) or the author of the Smithsonian article (Helen Fields) being a science writer is of no importance. The work they refer to is the issue."

Oh absolutely Wolfie, with one small difference. One knows what they are talking about and the other is arguing in the face of science.

"I'm not arguing the young earth science - just showing that it is there and held by scientists just as qualified as those of the consensus view."

No, there is no 'Young Earth Science', that's just a fallacy, and you still have showed not ONE scientist worth their salt who would entertain such rubbish. We can tell the age of the earth from many different ways, not one of which indicates less than 4 BILLION years old.

"You are barking up the wrong tree when you look to geologists to prove deep time. They get their markers from the scientists who establish by radio-dating the age of the rocks. Observed rates of decay of radioisotopes are used, on the assumption that those rates have been constant over the ages."

Oh really? Ask a geologist how old the earth is and tell him you think it's less that 10 thousand years old then. Watch them laugh their head off in your face. Regarding decay of isotopes, fortunately we don't just use carbon. There are many elements/isotopes that can be used to date things depending on what time scale you want to deal with. I believe the general term for the field is "radioisotope dating", and it basically works by measuring the rate at which radioactive elements turn into other elements. Let's say you have some element A with a half life of 250 years. You'd expect to find 100 grams of element A in a sample if it was brand new. If you find 50 grams, the sample must be about 250 years old. If you find 25 grams, it's probably about 500 years old. And so on; after every so many years, the "half life", the amount of the element that is left is approximately half its previous amount.
All radioactive substances have these half-lives, and we know them to a pretty good precision. Obviously once you get very little of a substance (after about ~10 half lives, IIRC) it's not very useful for dating materials, but as I said, there are a lot of them and their useful periods overlap, so we have a lot of ways to check our numbers. In the example above, if the sample also contains some element B with a half life of 500 years, and we'd expect to find 100 grams of it in a brand new sample, we should find 50 grams of element B when element A is down to 25 grams.
Carbon dating, incidentally, can also be (and has been) verified using still other methods, like counting tree rings and geological evidence.
In a nutshell, we know that carbon dating works because it's been verified by other dating methods, like other radioisotopes. We know these other radioisotopes work because of a wealth of scientific evidence from nuclear physics. And there isn't a shred of evidence to discount the validity of our current understanding of radioactive decay.

Scientists alive today who accept the biblical account of creation:

http://creation.com/creation-scientists#presentsci

LOL! Quoting from 'Creation.com' is a bit like Neo-Nazi's referencing 'Stormfront' as an unbiased source of literature!


Here's a couple of thousand 'Steve's' who are either Biologists, Geologists or otherwise highly qualified to comment on the age of the Earth. Note these are only the 'Steve's', the actual number of scientists would be many orders higher!

https://ncse.com/list-of-steves

Cognitive dissonance's a bitch, ain't it?

Wolfsbane said...

Steve R said...

'[Steve R, I said there are dissenting voices from scientists who present conflicting evidence. That is a fact. You may not like it that there are scientists in the relevant fields who dispute the consensus, but it's a fact. You may not like the scientific arguments they use to dispute the consensus, but the arguments exist.]
Nope, they don't. No serious credible scientist would entertain such deranged lies as a 'young earth'- less than 10k as you say, other than those from 'Biblical Diploma mills' that hand out 'degrees' or those scientists who have chosen to ignore cognitive dissonance in favour of absurd religious timelines.'

You dismiss the top-grade scientists as having fallen into cognitive dissonance. That's your assessment - the fact remains that they are top grade scientists. I could accuse the consensus scientists of ignoring the contrary evidence in favour of their ideologically supportive interpretation, or of succumbing to peer-pressure and fear of the academy establishment. They are all still top-grade scientists.


'You clearly don't bother to read what you post so I have taken the liberty and extracted the important parts of that article, which you either willfully ignored or just didn't read..'

I read it. It correctly reported the relevant fact - organic tissue found in a supposedly 68 million year old fossil. That was my point. That the scientist deplored creationist scientists making the observation that this surely called into question the validity of the whole dating system, that I never denied.


'Quite clearly she stumbled on something nobody else had before, red blood cells WITHIN the bone while the rest decayed over millenia. The important word here Wolfie, 'Within'.'

Of course it was 'within'. No one suggested it was the skin of the beast! It is credible that being within the bone preserved it for a significant time. Several thousand years is significant time. But you and the establishment are asking us to believe the organic material was preserved for 68 million years! Such faith!

'This drives Schweitzer crazy. Geologists have established that the Hell Creek Formation, where B. rex was found, is 68 million years old, and so are the bones buried in it.'

Yes, we know - but the finding of the organic material within the bones makes that dating incredible. That's the point. That's why other evolutionists have desperately tried to deny it is organic matter of the beast, arguing against her and suggesting it is pond scum, etc.


Steve R said...

Wolfie,

"You dismiss the top-grade scientists as having fallen into cognitive dissonance. That's your assessment - the fact remains that they are top grade scientists. I could accuse the consensus scientists of ignoring the contrary evidence in favour of their ideologically supportive interpretation, or of succumbing to peer-pressure and fear of the academy establishment. They are all still top-grade scientists. "

Top grade scientists, yes? Give me one name that holds up to scrutiny in the relevant academic field. Plant physiologists have no more clue about the age of the earth than a man who has spent his life painting.

"I read it. It correctly reported the relevant fact - organic tissue found in a supposedly 68 million year old fossil. That was my point. That the scientist deplored creationist scientists making the observation that this surely called into question the validity of the whole dating system, that I never denied. "

They didn't call in to question anything Wolfie, they desperately wanted it to but failed on every count. As I said before, we don't just use one method of dating something.

"Of course it was 'within'. No one suggested it was the skin of the beast! It is credible that being within the bone preserved it for a significant time. Several thousand years is significant time. But you and the establishment are asking us to believe the organic material was preserved for 68 million years! Such faith"

How perfectly ridiculous. Are you really implying humans and dinosaurs walked the Earth at the same time?

"Yes, we know - but the finding of the organic material within the bones makes that dating incredible. That's the point. That's why other evolutionists have desperately tried to deny it is organic matter of the beast, arguing against her and suggesting it is pond scum, etc."

Wolfie, please try to stay within the same scientific field. Saying 'evolutionists' makes you sound like an idiot. Evolution is the scientific theory behind natural selection, which has been proved beyond any shadow of a doubt , and a paleontologist is someone who studies fossilized bones and plants. They are completely different fields.




Wolfsbane said...

Steve R said...

'Top grade scientists, yes? Give me one name that holds up to scrutiny in the relevant academic field.'

Sure. Kurt Wise: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kurt_Wise

And this from a strongly anti-creationist site:
"It would be wrong to infer from this list that all creationists have suspicious credentials. In fact, a good number of prominent creationists have legitimate -- even noteworthy -- doctoral degrees in scientific fields. For example, Duane Gish earned a doctorate in biochemistry from Berkeley, Steve Austin earned a doctorate in geology from Pennsylvania State University, and Kurt Wise earned his doctorate in paleontology from Harvard while studying under Stephen Jay Gould. So just because a few well-known creationists failed to earn their graduate degrees the traditional way does not mean that all or even most of them did."
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/credentials.html

'They didn't call in to question anything Wolfie, they desperately wanted it to but failed on every count. As I said before, we don't just use one method of dating something.'

If organic material being preserved for 68 million years raises no questions with you, then of course you are right.

'How perfectly ridiculous. Are you really implying humans and dinosaurs walked the Earth at the same time?'

Yes. And it is at least as believable as blood vessels surviving 68 million years without being fossilized.

'Wolfie, please try to stay within the same scientific field. Saying 'evolutionists' makes you sound like an idiot. Evolution is the scientific theory behind natural selection, which has been proved beyond any shadow of a doubt'

Both creationism and the evolutionary theory hold to natural selection - so you can't claim it as proof of evolution!

'and a paleontologist is someone who studies fossilized bones and plants. They are completely different fields.'

I use the term 'evolutionist' to cover materialist deep-time beliefs. That's because one can be a creationist and hold to deep-time, but one cannot deny deep-time and believe in evolution. The latter requires the former. If it helps, I could use 'deep-time non-creationist', but I hope you will now know what I mean by 'evolutionist'.



Steve R said...

Oh Wolfie you are sweet!

Kurt Wise aye? This pretty much sums him up...

"Kurt Wise doesn't need the challenge; he volunteers that, even if all the evidence in the universe flatly contradicted Scripture, and even if he had reached the point of admitting this to himself, he would still take his stand on Scripture and deny the evidence. This leaves me, as a scientist, speechless... We have it on the authority of a man who may well be creationism's most highly qualified and most intelligent scientist that no evidence, no matter how overwhelming, no matter how all-embracing, no matter how devastatingly convincing, can ever make any difference"

Cognitive Dissonance to the maximum on mister 'Wise' there! Same goes for the handful you referenced above!

"If organic material being preserved for 68 million years raises no questions with you, then of course you are right."

Wolfie read the article again. She found something no-one else had before, organic material INSIDE the bone...and others have followed her lead and found the same again! Science Wolfie, Science!

"How perfectly ridiculous. Are you really implying humans and dinosaurs walked the Earth at the same time?'

Yes. And it is at least as believable as blood vessels surviving 68 million years without being fossilized."

No, it is absolutely no where near as believable Wolfie. Read the article, she found a few red blood CELLS. These are incredibly small and naked to the human eye, around a diameter of 6 - 8 μm. Stupidly small, and inside a bone. Far, far more believable than humans walking about with Tyrannosaurus Rex!

"Both creationism and the evolutionary theory hold to natural selection - so you can't claim it as proof of evolution"

I don't need to, Evolution has been shown to be driven by Natural selection among other drivers. Creationism waffle knew it couldn't disprove it so co-opted it.

"In the 150 years since Darwin proposed the theory of evolution by natural selection, a mountain of evidence has accumulated to support the theory. A greatly expanded fossil record since Darwin's time, the discovery of DNA and the process of genetic replication, an understanding of radioactive decay, observations of natural selection in the wild and in laboratories, and evidence in the genomes of many different organisms, including humans, have all bolstered the validity of the theory of evolution"

As you can see from above we have proved evolution beyond a shadow of a doubt via a number of different ways including radio-dating, DNA, the Fossil Record, and even flipping OBSERVING IT HAPPEN IN THE WILD!

"I use the term 'evolutionist' to cover materialist deep-time beliefs. That's because one can be a creationist and hold to deep-time, but one cannot deny deep-time and believe in evolution. The latter requires the former. If it helps, I could use 'deep-time non-creationist', but I hope you will now know what I mean by 'evolutionist'."

You are trying to changing the meaning of a word here to suit yourself. How about we just stick to 'Young Earth Creationists' and 'Those with overwhelming evidence to back up the age of the earth'?

Evolution has absolutely nothing to do with the age of the Earth.

Are you in the Caleb Foundation or related to that half-wit Poots in anyway?











Wolfsbane said...

Steve R said...

'Cognitive Dissonance to the maximum on mister 'Wise' there! Same goes for the handful you referenced above!'

You are confusing his religious beliefs with his scientific ability. He rightly states that if any evidence seems to refute his religious beliefs, he will assume that future findings will overthrow that interpretation of the evidence and he will stick with his religious beliefs. What he would not do in such a situation is claim that the evidence supported his beliefs.

'[If organic material being preserved for 68 million years raises no questions with you, then of course you are right.]
Wolfie read the article again. She found something no-one else had before, organic material INSIDE the bone...and others have followed her lead and found the same again! Science Wolfie, Science!'

??? I've already said it was inside the bone! The point is that it is incredible to suppose that the blood vessels would survive at all for 68 MILLION years!

'No, it is absolutely no where near as believable Wolfie. Read the article, she found a few red blood CELLS. These are incredibly small and naked to the human eye, around a diameter of 6 - 8 μm. Stupidly small, and inside a bone. Far, far more believable than humans walking about with Tyrannosaurus Rex!'

Inside a bone, for 68 MILLION years, not fossilized. Hmmm. Your faith is indeed strong.

'[Both creationism and the evolutionary theory hold to natural selection - so you can't claim it as proof of evolution]
I don't need to, Evolution has been shown to be driven by Natural selection among other drivers. Creationism waffle knew it couldn't disprove it so co-opted it.'

We SEE natural selection in operation. We have never seen any organism change over time into any but a version of itself. Indeed, we cannot, as it supposedly requires more time than man has been doing science to see any change. So the only thing we have seen is change like finche's beaks varying - but we still end up with finches.

'"In the 150 years since Darwin proposed the theory of evolution by natural selection, a mountain of evidence has accumulated to support the theory. A greatly expanded fossil record since Darwin's time, the discovery of DNA and the process of genetic replication, an understanding of radioactive decay, observations of natural selection in the wild and in laboratories, and evidence in the genomes of many different organisms, including humans, have all bolstered the validity of the theory of evolution"
As you can see from above we have proved evolution beyond a shadow of a doubt via a number of different ways including radio-dating, DNA, the Fossil Record, and even flipping OBSERVING IT HAPPEN IN THE WILD!'

Nonsense. What you have above is a claim. The most fatal part of it is the DNA discoveries. The incredible complexity of even the simplest organism is now well known. To suppose the necessary masses of complex information required to move an organism to be a different organism arose by chance mutations is to reduce science to magic. Ironic, isn't it?


'You are trying to changing the meaning of a word here to suit yourself. How about we just stick to 'Young Earth Creationists' and 'Those with overwhelming evidence to back up the age of the earth'?'

You are the one seeking to claim the argument without proof. 'Evolutionist' or 'deep-time non-creationist' accurately describe the beast.

'Evolution has absolutely nothing to do with the age of the Earth.'

Really? So you don't need deep-time for evolution to work?

'Are you in the Caleb Foundation or related to that half-wit Poots in anyway?'

Not in Caleb or related to Mr.Poots. Just a Christian in the Biblical sense of the word.

Steve R said...

Wolfie,

"What he would not do in such a situation is claim that the evidence supported his beliefs."

My arse he wouldn't! He and other of his ilk would pounce on evidence for a young earth like vultures.

"Inside a bone, for 68 MILLION years, not fossilized. Hmmm. Your faith is indeed strong."

Not faith in the slightest Wolfie, she proved it, and it was replicated in other bones! A few cells encased in bone under huge layers of strata does not stretch credulity for me in the slightest.

"We SEE natural selection in operation. We have never seen any organism change over time into any but a version of itself. Indeed, we cannot, as it supposedly requires more time than man has been doing science to see any change. So the only thing we have seen is change like finche's beaks varying - but we still end up with finches"

Take yourself into a Natural History museum Wolfie, have a look at the fossil record. Are Australopithecines the same as Homo Floresiensis? Or a 'version' of it?

"Finches beaks varying"? Why wouldn't they vary according to natural selection? I do not get your point here, can you elaborate further? You do understand the difference between Natural Selection and Evolution, don't you?

"Nonsense. What you have above is a claim. The most fatal part of it is the DNA discoveries. The incredible complexity of even the simplest organism is now well known. To suppose the necessary masses of complex information required to move an organism to be a different organism arose by chance mutations is to reduce science to magic. Ironic, isn't it?"

'Chance'? Evolution is the exact OPPOSITE of chance. as for your assertion that..".. masses of complex information required to move an organism to be a different organism arose by chance mutations is to reduce science to magic."

No it does not. Here is a detailed study utterly destroying that ludicrous argument.

http://pages.uoregon.edu/joet/bridgham-thornton-2006.pdf

One of us believes in Magic here Wolfie, and it's not I.

"You are the one seeking to claim the argument without proof. 'Evolutionist' or 'deep-time non-creationist' accurately describe the beast."

I have already pointed out vasts amounts of evidence for an Earth aged in the Billions of years, across many different fields including biology, paleontology and genetics. You are either willfully blind to this or genuinely do not understand any of it.

"Really? So you don't need deep-time for evolution to work?"

Everything takes time Wolfie. Much like teaching a moron how to think critically I fear.













Henry JoY said...

Steve,

I admire your stamina (lol).

'What wasn't reasoned in can't be reasoned out' or so AM's horse sense goes!
I've come to realise that generally there's little potential for a breakthrough with the indoctrinated, certainly not so by external logical and scientific decree alone.

Wolfie's style of religion is a benign enough one. Apart from it being an affront to people of intellect, sure what harm do they do?

Let them off, I say.

Wolfsbane said...

Steve R said...

'Take yourself into a Natural History museum Wolfie, have a look at the fossil record. Are Australopithecines the same as Homo Floresiensis? Or a 'version' of it?'

Possibly not. The latter may be a human variant, the former an ape(non-human) variant.

'[Finches beaks varying]? Why wouldn't they vary according to natural selection? I do not get your point here, can you elaborate further? You do understand the difference between Natural Selection and Evolution, don't you?'

The point is that natural selection will determine (all things being equal) what beak-type of finch will prosper and what not with environmental change. It will not lead to anything other than a finch, however.

'Evolution is the exact OPPOSITE of chance.'

Well, for me 'chance' means undirected events. But if you mean evolution is directed by the laws of physics/chemistry, then I agree that evolution is not then based on chance. But then the outcome of generation of a lottery number is also determined by the laws of physics. Same for evolution - throw in all the varied items that an organism is exposed to, multiply by time, and there you have the outcome. The problem is that throwing in natural selection and genetic mutation and time does not get higher complexity that enhances an organism's chance of survival. The odds, the number of times all the right factors coincide, are incredibly small.

'and as for your assertion that..".. masses of complex information required to move an organism to be a different organism arose by chance mutations is to reduce science to magic."
No it does not. Here is a detailed study utterly destroying that ludicrous argument.
http://pages.uoregon.edu/joet/bridgham-thornton-2006.pdf'


Thanks for that. Its argument is more than a bit beyond my abilities. But I will be on the look-out for more on this concept of 'molecular exploitation'.

In the meantime, here's a recent exchange between the evolution and creation sides: Dr. Lee Spetner in an exchange with Dr. Edward E. Max, A Scientific Critique Of Evolution.

https://www.trueorigin.org/spetner1.php

'I have already pointed out vasts amounts of evidence for an Earth aged in the Billions of years, across many different fields including biology, paleontology and genetics. You are either willfully blind to this or genuinely do not understand any of it.'

I'm aware of the claims and arguments. I'm also aware of the claims and arguments against. Good scientists on each side.

I don't wish to prolong this unnecessarily, especially as we are not personally able to make the detailed scientific arguments. So I would like to commend these two sites, one Pro-Evolution and one Pro-Creation, that mirror one another:

Pro-Evolution: http://www.talkorigins.org/
Pro-Creation: https://www.trueorigin.org/

Steve R said...


Wolfie,

"Possibly not. The latter may be a human variant, the former an ape(non-human) variant. "

'Human 'variant?'' What madness is this? How many human 'variants' do you recognise Wolfie?

"The point is that natural selection will determine (all things being equal) what beak-type of finch will prosper and what not with environmental change. It will not lead to anything other than a finch, however."

(Bangs head against wall muttering 'Time, time, time)

"Same for evolution - throw in all the varied items that an organism is exposed to, multiply by time, and there you have the outcome"

Time, Time, Time...

"Thanks for that. Its argument is more than a bit beyond my abilities. But I will be on the look-out for more on this concept of 'molecular exploitation'."

Maybe, but it is NOT beyond mine!

"I'm aware of the claims and arguments. I'm also aware of the claims and arguments against. Good scientists on each side."

Only one side use the science Wolfie.

"I don't wish to prolong this unnecessarily, especially as we are not personally able to make the detailed scientific arguments"

Oh, I can make the detailed scientific arguments Wolfie, you cannot. Luckily for all of us people like me who use the scientific method are in the vast majority too.

Use your brain. You clearly have some faculty of reason there but for whatever reason you turn a blind eye to the truth.

Henry JoY,

We accept what we walk past. Would you want this inerrant crap going anywhere near the impressionable minds of children?

Not on my f**king watch.
















Wolfsbane said...

Steve R said...

'[Possibly not. The latter may be a human variant, the former an ape(non-human) variant.]
'Human 'variant?'' What madness is this? How many human 'variants' do you recognise Wolfie?'

Such as the four ethnic groups - Caucasian, Amerindian, African, and Asian. All fully human, but having obvious differences. So to that we could add the some extinch groups.

'[The point is that natural selection will determine (all things being equal) what beak-type of finch will prosper and what not with environmental change. It will not lead to anything other than a finch, however.]
(Bangs head against wall muttering 'Time, time, time)'

Exactly - you cannot reproduce it in the lab, but you insist it will come to pass after a great amount of time. That's a hypothesis, not a fact.

'[Thanks for that. Its argument is more than a bit beyond my abilities. But I will be on the look-out for more on this concept of 'molecular exploitation'.]
Maybe, but it is NOT beyond mine!'

Good for you! So I'll leave you to examine with an open mind the work of those who are scientists like yourself, but who argue against evolution.

'Only one side use the science Wolfie.'

So when I see evolutionists argue among themselves, it would be fair to make the same comment? I think it is better to say both have science on their side at times.

'Oh, I can make the detailed scientific arguments Wolfie, you cannot. Luckily for all of us people like me who use the scientific method are in the vast majority too.
Use your brain. You clearly have some faculty of reason there but for whatever reason you turn a blind eye to the truth.'

The scientists who are creationists also use the scientific method - to refute evolution.

Henry JoY said...

Steve,

With that passion it may come accross as if you're on a crusade yourself. There's whacks of whack o's out there. You're unlikely to talk them out of their delusions.
I'd prefer if children weren't exposed to this nonsense but its an imperfect world where our wants, desires and preferences are often frustrated.

Steve R said...

Henry JoY,

I've thought about what you said and I realised you are right. As much as my own indignation burns me, it is a futile endeavour to reason with the unreasonable. Thank you.

Wolfie,

One day you will come to realise the truth about life in all it's savage beauty, and until then I wish you well.

Henry JoY said...

Steve,

its not something that one easily comes to be 'right' about.
Rather its a learning that gets beaten out on the anvil of experience.

The fact that such beliefs as Wolfie's survive at all, four hundred years after the Enlightenment, is a testimony to some sort of adaptiveness of those belief systems. However one must pose the question if there were a creator is there not a serious design flaw in hir design if one considers the human's propensity for irrationality.

(You were never going to deliver a knock-out but you took every round on points).

Wolfsbane said...

Henry Joy said:
'However one must pose the question if there were a creator is there not a serious design flaw in hir design if one considers the human's propensity for irrationality.'

I appreciate that you don't want to continue flogging a dead horse like me, but I thought you might like to know that the 'serious design flaw' in mankind is not a design flaw at all. Man was designed a perfect being, having free will. His choice to disobey God has led to all the irrationality, all the oppression, suffering, and death that surround us. It is a world of rebels, experiencing the problems that divergence from the perfect design has brought on.

I suppose one may suggest that free will was a design flaw. But I think that is to evade responsibility of the free agent, as well as assuming one has more wisdom than the God who created the universe and all in it.

And I wish you well, too.


http://creation.com/evolutions-achilles-heels

http://creation.com/refuting-evolution-chapter-1-evolution-creation-science-religion-facts-bias

https://creation.com/images/pdfs/flyers/15-questions-for-evolutionists-s.pdf

Steve R said...

HJ,

Thanks. I suppose the convoluted verbal gymnastics coupled with the inerrant myopia those who hold to utterly absurd ideas have, is to be admired in it's own way. Hitchen's Razor remains potent however.

"That which is asserted without evidence can and should be dismissed without evidence".

Fine though this premise is it still sticks in the craw somewhat when, like the post above, the religiously inclined completely miss the blatantly obvious folly in their logic.

Always loved this quote from Epicurus..

God either wants to eliminate bad things and cannot,
or can but does not want to,
or neither wishes to nor can,
or both wants to and can.
If he wants to and cannot, then he is weak and this does not apply to god.
If he can but does not want to, then he is spiteful which is equally foreign to god’'s nature.
If he neither wants to nor can, he is both weak and spiteful, and so not a god.
If he wants to and can, which is the only thing fitting for a god, where then do bad things come from? Or why does he not eliminate them?"


From Lactantius, On the Anger of God, 13.19

Henry JoY said...

Wolfsbane,

as a man of faith you propose God made man. Steve and I take the rational position that men created gods.
We're unlikely to reconcile those fundamental differences.

Even though I take that position I don't discount the merits of religious practice for the individual or for society. I'd also hold that in claiming one's own freedom of thought we ought afford the same to others. Surely each of us can agree to differ and discuss or debate our positions without having to bind the other to our position?

And in that spirit I wish yourself and Steve well.

As the priestín says 'The Mess is over go in peace'. ^_^





Peter said...

Steve R
I gave up following your and Wolfie's thread as it was getting tedious in the extreme. Though you deserve a 10 out of 10 for trying. There is no point trying to reason with those that refute logic and espouse blind faith, you will not de-convert them. If someone believes that lucifer was actually a being, the world is 6500 years old and that the creator of the universe came to this planet but did not even explain the night sky to a people who wondered at its beauty, then that someone is probably best avoided lest you end up banging your head against a wall.