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Darwin and Racism

Discussion of everything related to the Theory of Evolution.

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Re: Darwin and Racism

Postby AFJ » Sun Jul 19, 2009 1:44 pm

Mr. Astus,

There are places in the lives of many believers where supernatural power has intersected the natural. This is known as a miracle. My son when he was 7 years old (we were missionaries to Africa) contracted something that had all the symptoms of meningitis, which is common where we were. Fever of nearly 105, stiff and achy neck, deep chills. It was in the middle of the night, and no doctor was near. One of the African pastors and another missionary came over and prayed for him in the name of Jesus and the fever was gone within an hour! I was amzed, because this doesn't always happen, Mr. Astus. Not only that, my little son said to me after they left--"Dad I felt heat go through my body."

There was another man in church one Sunday that I was sitting by who told me (he was in amazement) of heat going through his body when he allowed the elders of the church to pray for him. He was 62 and said he never experienced this before. The book of James in the NT instructs us if we are sick to request the elders to pray for us. James 5:14,15 Psalm 103:1-3

I will not go into a detailed story of when I know that divine intervention saved me from two large dogs, bent on tearing me apart. They saw something behind me that scared them simultaneously and they ran. It was me and them alone with nothing but open space behind me. I neither heard nor saw anything, but it was obvious they saw something--because they both yelped.

These things happened outside of my body or bodily sensations. Unless I and the other people (dogs) involved were having a mass hallucination, this happened.

These things happen to give us evidence, Mr. Astus. Maybe it isn't under a microscope, but it is evidence. It is called confirmation of God's word.
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Re: Darwin and Racism

Postby AstusAleator » Mon Jul 20, 2009 12:00 am

I understand the conclusion you reached, because you are a person of faith. Of course, when something good happens that you can't explain, it's a miracle. When something bad happens that you can't explain it's god's "mysterious ways." Who are you to question the motives or methods of God, right?

When something happens that has no explanation: that is the beginning of the scientific process. The process then goes on to question why, research, form hypotheses, perform tests, and have the results scrutinized by the scientific community. From this point, the results are added to a larger body of work so that eventually enough evidence may accumulate that we can come to an answer which we have a high enough level of confidence in.

Faith skips all of these steps, and lands neatly at a conclusion with 100% certainty. Furthermore, there is no scientific way to test supernatural events (thus the word supernatural).

Science is clearly not the answer to all of life's questions. This is why I said that someone who uses evolution to determine their morality is a fool. My point is merely that faith/superstition has no place in science, and science has no place in personal morality.

People will use anything they percieve as a credible source of truth to justify their actions. Slavery was justified by many through the Bible (black people bore the "mark of Cain"). Hitler justified killing off the Jews not only by evolutionary semantics, but also by biblical anti-semitism (Jews killed Jesus, etc).

If someone took those quoted lines from the Origin of Species and started trying to do away with all "primitive races." Would Darwin be at fault, or would the person be at fault for misunderstanding the theory of evolution, and taking Darwin's thoughts out of historical context? Has anything like that ever happened in Christianity...? Hmmmm Crusades, David Karesh, Jim Brown, witch-hunts, gay-bashing... How about Islam? Hmmm suicide bombers, genital mutilation, oppressive sexism...
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Re: Darwin and Racism

Postby AFJ » Mon Jul 20, 2009 1:21 am

Your point was that the sensations of faith could be biological. The old suggestion that it's all in the mind. I was simply testifying of something outside my body and inner subjective person.

No one says that the scientific method is required in an eyewitness report. This would technically enter into law and testimony.

In a lab or in the scientific method the medium is controlled, the experiment is planned and anticipated. These events were not controlled experiments.

As for the evil that comes from religion--that is no surprise to God or Christians--as you stated--"religious" people brought Jesus to Pilate out of envy. They are wolves in sheep's clothing as Christ said ( i do not speak of Jews in general). He said that many false prophets would arise and deceive many.

We are Christian--that means we follow Christ --not man, not Allah, not Karesh, not Manson or Hitler, nor Darwin. We follow with men who follow Him.

I pray one day you'll find Him relevant, because He found us relevant enough to die for us.
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Postby MrMistery » Mon Jul 20, 2009 2:43 am

Ok guys, this is getting out of hand

Now, it is my opinion that whenever you study things like evolution you will inevitably reach some sorts of ethical dilemmas, which is why i don't mind having this type of discussion on the forum even though they are not science talk per se. However, saying stuff like
"We are Christian--that means we follow Christ --not man, not Allah, not Karesh, not Manson or Hitler, nor Darwin. We follow with men who follow Him.

I pray one day you'll find Him relevant, because He found us relevant enough to die for us."

proves to me that you have a philosophy that is pretty much incompatible with this forum's science philosophy, which is clearly stated in our rules. In cases like this, I must intrude in your talk and remind you where you are. You are on biology-online.org, not on letstalkgod.com or something similar.
"As a biologist, I firmly believe that when you're dead, you're dead. Except for what you live behind in history. That's the only afterlife" - J. Craig Venter
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Re: Darwin and Racism

Postby AstusAleator » Mon Jul 20, 2009 4:28 am

AFJ wrote:Your point was that the sensations of faith could be biological. The old suggestion that it's all in the mind. I was simply testifying of something outside my body and inner subjective person.


I understand that - but those sadly are not proof of anything. They are only meaningful to you, and are not relevant in a scientific context.

Heat-rushes can be explained by capillary dilation due to emotion or hormones (or a fever)
Someone that has a 24-hour flu could psychosomatically add symptoms if they thought they had something else.
Dogs behave weirdly sometimes...
(I'm not saying this is what happened, but only demonstrating to you that there are other possible explanations than the one you leaped to)

The original point was that regardless of the source of our beliefs, convictions, morals, etc; they exist. To say that a scientific explanation of our origin negates our morality is not a valid conclusion.
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Postby futurezoologist » Mon Jul 20, 2009 7:48 am

I find that quite interesting that he was racist, even though it was more than common in his time - you would think that such a great mind would have pondered the notions of his society a little more...
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Re:

Postby biohazard » Mon Jul 20, 2009 9:11 am

futurezoologist wrote:I find that quite interesting that he was racist, even though it was more than common in his time - you would think that such a great mind would have pondered the notions of his society a little more...


How is this surprising? If you think about it, at that time the black people were way behind the Europeans and Americans whent it came to technological advancement. Many of Darwin's contemporaries thought it as a certainity that the black people were inferior to the whites - the evidence seemed overwhelming. It was only much later, when the black people got their freedom and integrated into the more advanced society, that they managed to prove they are on the same intellectual level as the whites and other people as long as they have access to the same level of education and welfare (their physical prowess had been proven many times before that, often in very unfortunate ways, such as working in the cotton fields...)

I think Darwin did a great deal of pondering about the notions of his society, but sometimes even that doesn't guarantee the right conclusion. At that time, it must have really seemed like the blacks were never going to reach the same level the whites had achieved.
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Re: Darwin and Racism

Postby AFJ » Mon Jul 20, 2009 9:24 am

Mr. Astus,

I don't feel that I should go any further as far as the morality issue on this thread. I will say this and be done. To say that believing a theory that finds accountability to a creator irrelevant is going to have an affect to those who receive it. But that is my opinion.

As for the events that I told you about--I have no problem with capillary dilation or even chemical reaction, as my son is biological. There was a catalyst though and it was not medicine. If I have a fever and I take aspirin--and then my fever goes down--I attribute the fact that the medicine has done it's work. In my son's case, a fever of 105 without medicine does not just break like that over there--people die from situations like that all the time. If it would have been during the day we would have taken him to a doctor, but things are different in Africa. To say that the fever just happened to break defies all patterns of sickness there. It did not lower--it was gone.

As well, I suppose the dogs were hallucinating, or had a hormone rush into their bloodstream. Or I made a an incidental movement which scared two large snarling dogs. At any rate, they were occurrences.

Evolutionistic and agnostic trains of thought are locked in naturalism, and deny all evidence that would suggest anything but the natural.
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Postby Jonl1408 » Thu Mar 17, 2011 9:54 pm

So basically are you guys saying that Darwin was racist because of his environment. Does that mean we should pardon all those murderes, and criminals, who grew up in bad environments. No, of course not, he was an adult, and capable of thinking for himself, and he should be able to take the blame just like any other person, not protected because he was famous.
Darwin's hypothesis of evolution, is very racist. His idea of the survival of the fittest applying to humans basically sanctions what Hitler did, now I am not saying that he saw what would happen because of that flawed belief, he would have had to have been a madman for that, and I don't think he was. He was just an extremely racist (even at that point in time) person, and he didn't realize the consequences of his beliefs.
@AstusAleator There actually is scienctific and historical evidence supporting the Bible.
If you want I can post it here, but anyways, having faith in something is not a bad thing it is actually a very necessary part of life. It actually takes more faith to believe in evolution, than in creation. Please look at this link http://www.great-quotes.com/quote/1117193, it will explain a lot.
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Postby Jonl1408 » Thu Mar 17, 2011 10:02 pm

@AFJ I hope you don't take offense at me correcting you, I am a teenager, but I just have to say something. Did you know that there actually is evidence for Creation? Before I say that though, I would like to say that The Second Law of Thermodynamics actually prevents Evolution from being proved. So if Evolution is out of the picture, then the only competitor worth a second look is Creation. Now if you would like to find Historical and Scientific evidence for Creation, then check out the last page of the subject 5 Proofs for Evolution, and read the comments on Why I Believe In Creation, on the Evolution forum.
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Re:

Postby biohazard » Fri Mar 18, 2011 8:48 am

Jonl1408 wrote:So basically are you guys saying that Darwin was racist because of his environment. Does that mean we should pardon all those murderes, and criminals, who grew up in bad environments. No, of course not, he was an adult, and capable of thinking for himself, and he should be able to take the blame just like any other person, not protected because he was famous.
Darwin's hypothesis of evolution, is very racist. His idea of the survival of the fittest applying to humans basically sanctions what Hitler did, now I am not saying that he saw what would happen because of that flawed belief, he would have had to have been a madman for that, and I don't think he was. He was just an extremely racist (even at that point in time) person, and he didn't realize the consequences of his beliefs.


I don't think anyone is saying that it Darwin or anyone else had some special right to be racist. But while condemning Darwin you must equally condemn the whole white christian society of that time - by today's standards it was an incredibly racist society. You must always reflect the persons whose actions you judge on the society and time they lived in. Virtually all "great leaders" of the past would be horrible war criminals if they lived today. Alexaner the Great, Caesar, Napoleon, you name it - they were all products of their time and are considered as heroes nowadays even though they caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people and attacked another countries and dreamt of conquering the world. Not so much different from Hitler's doings... only Hitler did his doings on a completely different time with different values. It is funny how you guys can always summon Hitler to help you when fighting against evolution and Darwin.

Also, you ask whether murderers and criminals should be pardoned because if they grew up in bad neighbourhoods. It might surprise you to know that most Western societies do this: a criminal can be pardoned completely, even if they committed a murder, if it can be shown that their environment had so much effect on their actions that they could not use their free will to prevent themselves doing what they did. In other words this means that a person is stated to be criminally insane and spends their time confined in a mental health institution - but they are not convicted of murder (exact details of this naturally depend on the country and its legistlation).

Also, when many lesser crimes are being judged the effect of the environment is taken into consideration. It is just a question of how much emphasis a given society puts on the environment: certain Arabic nations, for example, do not really care about it. A crime is a crime and you pay for it equally no matter what the circumstances were. Most Western societys often give some thought for the environment affecting the crime.
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Re: Darwin and Racism

Postby Jonl1408 » Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:59 pm

Yes, even a lot of the white population, that called themselves Christians at that time, were extremely racist, but there were a lot of real Christians, who opposed it strongly. Just because a person calls themself a Christian, does not mean that they always are (a lot of people at that time considered it fashionable, to be Christians), although I grant that there were a lot of real Christians, who chose their pocketbooks over their morals. I totally agree that a lot of famous people and generals back then were ruthless, and I do not like the fact that they were never put on trial for their crimes, but if you will notice, a lot of those people, based their beliefs on the same idea, that Darwin came up with many years later. People use Hitler as an example, because it is a lot easier to see Darwin's ideas in his actions.

As to what you said about criminals, I know that, but just because it is commonly done, does not mean that it should be done. About the comment about the criminally insane, there are three types of people who become criminally insane, those who are so taken up with hatred or grief, that they go insane meting it out on others, and those who are who went insane, and then went around doing crimes, and those who fake being insane to get off the hook. The first and third deserve to be punished (regarding to the first example, I am saying they should be punished if they ever get over being insane), but obviously the second does not deserve to be punished.

To answer your third comment, it is important that you understand the difference between environment and circumstances.
Environment-the totality of surrounding conditions
Circumstance - That which attends, or relates to, or in some way affects, a fact or event
Obviously the two are different, and the circumstances, are different than the environment.
If you grew up in a place where lots of people stole from each other, you would still not be immune to the laws of your country, and shouldn't be able to get off the hook, whereas if you were forced to steal something, by people who had threatened your family, and actually had the power to harm them, it would be a different case altogether.
I know this is kind of an extreme circumstance, or example, but it seemed a pretty simple way of putting it.
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