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evolution debate

Discussion of everything related to the Theory of Evolution.

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Re: evolution debate

Postby skeptic » Thu Apr 29, 2010 3:31 am

bitsian

I interpreted your word 'belief' in much the way I interpret the idea of religious faith. If I was wrong, then I am sorry.

Aristotle and Galileo? They are somewhat different. Aristotle was a ancient Greek, who was strongly influenced by the philosophical ideas of the time. He carried out excellent observational work in zoology, but was not a true scientist by today's definitions. For example : he believed in the power of logic as a means of determining the nature of the natural world. Today we would be extremely sceptical of that! Aristotle's lasting influence was a brake on improving scientific knowledge, since anything that conflicted with what he wrote was automatically regarded as wrong.

Galileo has been described as the first scientist in the modern sense. He used empirical testing to check his hypotheses, which is the modern way. Galileo boosted modern science by showing the way to use experimentation and empiricism.

Your comments on God suggest to me that you follow the philosophy of God of the Gaps. That is, you invoke God as the explanation when there is a gap in scientific knowledge. What you perhaps fail to realise is that there is no requirement for scientists to explain absolutely everything. What caused the Big Bang? I do not know, and nor does anyone else. It does not matter since we continue to grow our understanding, and sometime in the future we may be able to answer that question. In the mean time I accept there is a gap.

If I misinterpret your stance, then let me apologise in advance.
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Re: evolution debate

Postby bitsian003 » Fri Apr 30, 2010 9:22 am

no need to apologise i'm glad that you at last understood what i want to say...
i'm sorry for the late reply...

there is no requirement for scientists to explain absolutely everything.

do you think so???
what about kierkegaard logical explanation of God???

It does not matter since we continue to grow our understanding, and sometime in the future we may be able to answer that question. In the mean time I accept there is a gap.


Gap always existed and will continue to exist... we don't even know how huge that gap is... as you said lets hope that we fill the gap :D

btw please go through my post 'CREATION', i've tried to explain creation in a different context... all i want to do is to discuss the possibility of what i've said... please post your comment and let's continue our discussion over there.... :)
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Re: evolution debate

Postby skeptic » Fri Apr 30, 2010 10:43 am

Kierkegaard's view?

"Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855) agreed with Kant that the existence of God could not be proven by reason. However Kierkegaard did not think that it was rational to believe in God, rather one should have faith in God even if this seems to reason to be absurd. To put it another way reason has no place in faith. God is beyond reason.

Kierkegaard is regarded as the first existentialist."


Which really is no reason to believe. Personally, I am fixated on empirical and objective evidence. Faith means nothing to me. If the evidence aint there, I aint a believin' it!

On the other hand, I have no reason to disbelieve the existence of a deity. Until better data is available, I am sitting on the fence.
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Re: evolution debate

Postby Pachomius » Fri Apr 30, 2010 12:04 pm

God of the gaps, is that supposed to be absurd for God to be when science has gaps which science today cannot fill up?


Take the Big Bang, the question is what caused the Big Bang, scientists say they don't know, not yet.

I say that God caused the Big Bang, so God is the filling in the gap which scientists experience when they cannot answer the question what caused the Big Bang.


What exactly do scientists who are atheists mean when they say that they do not know what caused the Big Bang?

I am sure they mean that they do not know what mathematically justifiable agency and gounded on -- to use their favorite concept -- empirical evidence can be the immediate cause of the Big Bang.


When I say that God caused the Big Bang I mean that in the big picture of things that have a beginning -- and since Big Bang is the beginning of the material universe which scientists claim to have evidence empirical at that for its existence ( which again its existence is a material kind of existence ), I mean in the big picture of all existence that is not self-caused or is not God, God is the cause of the Big Bang.

For the Big Bang having a beginning and is the beginning of the material or empirical universe of the scientists cannot be otherwise than a thing caused by another thing, which other thing ultimately is God as creator of everything in the last explanation of everything, that does have a beginning, specially the material or physical or empirical universe that is the scope of examination of scientists, who are into empirical examination of everything that is accessible by empirical evidence and also through mathematical computation and calculation and speculation.


So, God is the God of the gaps because scientists do not know how to fill the gaps with an immediate empirically grounded causal agency.

But the way some people use that God of the gaps term, it shows that they don't know the nature and limitation of science on the one hand, and the concept of God as maker of everything on the other, in the big picture of existence of things that do have a beginning.


You will say that there are things that have no beginning but have always existed and are always existing.

Okay, give me an example, and I will tell you that it is God the maker of everything.



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Re: evolution debate

Postby skeptic » Fri Apr 30, 2010 8:27 pm

Pachomius

You used the example of the Big Bang, and that is usually the example religious people use. I am not a believer, but I cannot prove you wrong, because the 'cause' of the Big Bang is indeed one of the gaps in science.

That gap does not bother me, or convince me of a deity. After all, there are lots of gaps in scientific knowledge, and one more really means nothing.

A better argument from your view point is the 'privileged universe' concept. We know that, at least six physical constants have a value that falls into a narrow band that permits life. Why is this? Scientists know no reason why these physical constants have their specific value. For all we know, they might have any value. Yet their actual value appears 'designed' to allow life, and hence human life. That is a much better argument for the existence of a creator deity than the silly 'God of the Gaps' argument.

There is, however, an alternative explanation. The Anthropic Principle. This rather depends on there being many universes, which is still unproven. Super-string theory (also unproven) predicts a total of E500 universes. The Anthropic Principle says that, out of all those universes, every possible value of all physical constants may be found. Humans are in our specific universe simply because it is the only one where we could survive.

So you have a choice in two explanations for the 'privileged universe' concept. Either you believe in a creator deity, or you believe in the multiverse.

Personally, I am sitting on the fence until better data is available.
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Re: evolution debate

Postby Pachomius » Wed May 26, 2010 7:56 am

You cannot or will not accept God to have created the Big Bang and hence the material universe.

That is an attitude, it is not a cognitive position.


Before the Big Bang there was no material universe, wherefore the material universe was made by something or someone not any part of the material universe.

I call that God, and define God therefore as the maker of everything which has a beginning.


That atheist scientists do not want to know (which is to acknowledge, recognize, admit) that there has got to be some maker of the material universe, which is God maker of everything that has a beginning, that is an attitude but not a logically cognitive position.

Theist scientists have the logical cognitive inference from the existence of the material universe, which has a beginning before which beginning there was no material universe, the inference which dictates the logical as I said cognitive conclusion that there has got to be God, and wherefore God is proven to exist from the fact that the material universe does have a beginning.




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Re: evolution debate

Postby skeptic » Wed May 26, 2010 8:59 pm

Pachomius

I have not said you are wrong. I have just said there are several possible explanations. I do not know if there is a creator deity or not. Both are possible.

This is not an attitude. Attitudes are for the religious who believe without evidence - an approach known as 'faith'. I look purely at the evidence. If the evidence points to a clear conclusion, I am happy to adopt that. If the evidence is equivocal, I am happy to sit on the fence until there is better data and a more clear cut conclusion.

Whether the Big Bang was caused by a creator deity or some natural process remains unclear, since there is insufficient data to draw a clear cut conclusion. If you wish to rely on your faith and say it was due to a deity, then I am happy for you to do so. For me, I will wait.
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Postby iam » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:14 am

Ok if it is true that there is a "god" then why are there millions of us now when we started out with two as some believe to be called adam and eve? Christianity looks down on the reproduction within a family. So why wouold there be millions of us now if this is all purely disgusting in "his" eyes as you say? Think of the facts before you decide to say something in response. Science and religion are in no way, shape, or form, similar.
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Re:

Postby iam » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:26 am

Jillo725 wrote:I think that evolution should be taught but I do not believe that evolution proves God doesn't exist.

People who are religious are simply afraid of someone proving them wrong, and that makes them angry. Just like if a scientist was proven wrong when he believes himself completely.

Religion is based on faith. Therefore, nothing should be able to sway religious people from their beliefs. I do not think that people are "stupid" because they are afraid of what they don't understand. Evolution should be explained in complete detail to everyone, so that everyone can see the validity in the theory and how it doesn't pertain to God's existence.


This is true religion, be it real or not, should not be frowned upon like cannibalism is. If a person wants to believe it then let them. It is not against my thoughts(since i am atheist) to say that I too beleive that "the creator" is something people turn to to find safety or reassurance (sp?) they are afraid and do not want to be condemmed to what seems to them to be a prison life. That is my thought of why religion is created though.
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Postby BDDVM » Fri Jan 14, 2011 1:44 am

But intelligent design is a scientific theory. It's just not a very good one.
As I understand it intelligent design states that there is evidence of an intelligent designer in the wonderful world around us. (If you find a functioning wristwatch laying on the ground you can assume it was built by someone).Unfortunately this is a testable hypothesis. There should be intelligence in all the designs. Therefore if even one design proves to be unintelligent then the hypothesis fails.
As a member of the healthcare world I can asure you there are plenty of examples of slipshod design that no intelligent (let alone omniscient) designer would produce.
A couple quick examples.
The human lower back, dumb idea that evolution stuck us with.
The path of air into the lungs crosses the path of food into the stomache. Again, a stupid setup that makes sense from our evolutionary history.
As long as we are intelligently designing. Why can't I photosynthesize? It sure would be handy instead of all that farming.
I'm sure you can think of your own examples.
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Re: evolution debate

Postby kmo9000 » Fri Jan 14, 2011 5:02 pm

So your saying that if I am religious I cannot be a scientist? Many great scientists were religious and many of them believed in a god.

Intelligent design is just as valid as the theory of evolution, and when you get right down to it scientists workign on either theory do not know what started the process.

Since we all live in time, everything we experience has a beginning and an end, logically it makes sense that whatever started the process has to have not had a beginning and an end. Whatever started "time" has to have existed outside of time. The only other option is to say that the universe simply always existed, and personally I don't know how I can logically justify a universe without a beginning.

The bottom line is we don't know, so why are you discrediting other people's theories on the rash assumption that they are trying to prove the existence of god?
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Postby BDDVM » Sat Jan 15, 2011 12:55 am

Of course you can be a scientist. If you ignore the evidence against intelligent design because you have prejudices that you can't get past then you will just be a lousy scientist. The theory is discredited because it doesn't explain anything or predict anything useful.
Quite a few people have trouble with the predictition concept.
An example of evolutionary prediction. A few years ago a group realised that some important fossils were missing from the record. Noone had found good fish/ amphibian transition fossils. Where to look? Well we know about when it happened and had a good guess it would have been in a flat river delta /swamp type environment. Check the geologic maps for the right sediments at the right age and head for the Canadian Arctic.
The bones were waiting for them when they got there.
Where would you look for this fossil using the intelligent design theory?
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