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cornelius_sulla

Evolution or Adam and Eve?

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Religion and Science have always made a bad mixture.

...but not, perhaps, Spirituality and science. Again I ask, why should evolution - or come to that, anything discovered by science - rule out god's existance, simply because it runs against some religious dogmas?

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Again I ask, why should evolution - or come to that, anything discovered by science - rule out god's existance, simply because it runs against some religious dogmas?

Exactly the whole point; Gods's existance and most religious dogmas are not falsifiable; they are a matter of Faith, not Science. We are again trying to compare apples with oranges.

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Science has proved conclusively that life - in the main - is shaped by evolution. My opinion is that to deny this is like denying that the earth is a globe, and it is high time it stopped being controversial. Although a 'free thinker' (atheist) myself, I fail to see why evolutionary theory annoys some religious people so much. Why should it deny the existance of God? If I were religious myself, I would embrace evolutionary theory like a long lost friend - It is more marvellous that God created things painstakingly over billions of years, rather than waking up one morning in a few thousand years ago and saying: 'oh, I think I might create a universe'. To paraphrase Einstein, 'God does not make airfix models'.

The primary objection from some of the Christians I've known is that a godless acceptance of evolution philosophically justifies things like eugenics and a whole slew of other ideas that are incompatible with Christianity.

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I posted this topic with some trepidation; but I'm glad I did. I just can't get this kind of discussion with my friends here in Aotearoa, (bless them) all we talk about is Rugby; this topic has previously seen the conversation end with fists flying. Reading these replies has given me new perspective.

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A lot of educated religious people can and do believe in evolution. Only those beholden to a literal intepretation of a creation myth object.

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The primary objection from some of the Christians I've known is that a godless acceptance of evolution philosophically justifies things like eugenics and a whole slew of other ideas that are incompatible with Christianity.

It's arguable if christianity is incompatible with eugenics per se; for one, that wasn't the case for the Spanish Inquisition. Your pedigree was checked for no less than five generations in the search of muslim and/or hebrew ascendence when you were employed by the state.

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The primary objection from some of the Christians I've known is that a godless acceptance of evolution philosophically justifies things like eugenics and a whole slew of other ideas that are incompatible with Christianity.

It's arguable if christianity is incompatible with eugenics per se; for one, that wasn't the case for the Spanish Inquisition. Your pedigree was checked for no less than five generations in the search of muslim and/or hebrew ascendence when you were employed by the state.

 

The Christian Spaniards of the 15th century had a term -- limpieza de sangre -- which referred to "purity of blood," and which extended beyond denial of government employment to people of Jewish descent. It included certain prohibitions of intermarriage between converted Jews and Christians. The Spanish government maintained carefully compiled lists of the conversos or "New Christians" (Jews who converted to Christianity, most of whom having little choice but to convert).

 

While many of these practices against people of Jewish descent continued right up into the 19th century, they have since been discontinued.

 

It wasn't "god" who suddenly told these people that what they were doing was wrong. They decided for themselves that this was wrong. Because people change as times change.

 

Which reveals the irony in some Christians' aversion to theories of evolution, as Christianity itself is evolving.

 

-- Nephele

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When it gets down to it, religion requires faith, and science requires proof. The Creationists have faith to back their religious theory. The Evolutionists, on the other hand, do not have proof of evolution. They have evidence, but they do not have conclusive, solid proof. Unless they can document evolution in it's entirety, and replicate their experiments it is not sufficent proof to be declared fact. I know this is impossible, but science has rigid standards and they must be upheld.

 

My own opinion: I find Evolution credible, but largely unprovable. It has logic but no solid proof so I view it as a philosophy, not necessarily science. Religiously, I have faith in God, so if the scripture supports Creationism than I believe in it. Either way, I do not find either theory mutually exclusive of one another.

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Plenty of theories have been accepted with a great deal less evidence than that available for evolution. The problem with evolution is that it implies our origin is somewhat more humble than the handiwork of god, which to fundamentalist christian belief is contrary to biblical teaching. So in many ways the theory of evolution does not find universal acceptance because of human arrogance. The religious arguement I'm going to leave to one side for now - its bound to upset people because I don't like the way artificial stories are rigidly put forward in spite of commonsense - but if the fossil record and enviromental specialisation of current species isn't proof enough of the concept (its not a philosophy at all), could the americans please credit the british with breaking the sound barrier since there's no conclusive, solid proof they ever thought of it themselves.

 

Would you like to reconsider an unpalatable scientific concept instead? We're all flesh and blood you know, us and our anthropoid cousins... We just have a little less body hair, thats all.

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Evolutionism and christian faith are mutually exclusive, because The Book asks you to believe in a set of values including creationism. A believer it's not allowed to take what it fits him from the church dogma, let's say the creation part or the Jesus part etc. Of course, today people tend to do this picking refusing to believe that Jona lived in a sea monster, refusing what Ursus called a literal interpretation.

But evolution and a belief in God can be joined like the inteligent design propose. I believe that a renewed religion can adapt to any set of scientific proven facts while science could never prove the existence or nonexistence of God. Science it's pushing religion to change, to adjust to today's knowledge, but the most important part of religious beliefs it's outside the scope of science being either nonexisting or nonprovable.

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could the americans please credit the british with breaking the sound barrier since there's no conclusive, solid proof they ever thought of it themselves.

 

Would you like to reconsider an unpalatable scientific concept instead? We're all flesh and blood you know, us and our anthropoid cousins... We just have a little less body hair, thats all.

 

I wrote a response to this before my PoS work computer decided to take a crap. So heres the shorter, less eloquent version.

 

Point 1 -- Who broke the sound barrier is an historical question, not a scientific one, and so has different sets of proofs. A scientific question would be whether or not the sound barrier can be broken. The experiment can be replicated. Either Chuck Yaeger could hop back in a plane and do it again, or I could fire a 180 gr 7.62 x 54mm bullet out of the 20" barrel on a Mosin Nagant at the range. In either case, the sound barrier is broken, and the experiment in replicated. Can you replicate ecolution?

 

Point 2 -- I don't find such a concept unpalatable. Can you prove beyond a reasonable doubt that we evolved from Homo Erectus? Could Homo Sapiens Sapiens and Homo Erectus have been paralell sprecies? It is almost certain the 'modern man' and Homo Sapiens Neanderthalensis lived side by side. Did one really evolve from the other?

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When it gets down to it, religion requires faith, and science requires proof. The Creationists have faith to back their religious theory. The Evolutionists, on the other hand, do not have proof of evolution. They have evidence, but they do not have conclusive, solid proof. Unless they can document evolution in it's entirety, and replicate their experiments it is not sufficent proof to be declared fact. I know this is impossible, but science has rigid standards and they must be upheld.

 

My own opinion: I find Evolution credible, but largely unprovable. It has logic but no solid proof so I view it as a philosophy, not necessarily science. Religiously, I have faith in God, so if the scripture supports Creationism than I believe in it. Either way, I do not find either theory mutually exclusive of one another.

 

 

That almost sounds like you have:

 

Evolution: Some evidence, not bullet proof. Good argument from a logical point of view. Requires a small amount of faith.

 

Creation: No evidence at all. Leaking like a sieve. Two different creations in the same holy book, terrible much not logical. Requires faith faith and more faith.

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My problem with creationism vs. evolution is that the theists assume that creationism is the default theory. If evolution can be disproved--which will never happen--they assume that the only other explanation is creationism--which is no explanation at all. Disproving evolution does not add to the validity of creationism. There is no validity to creationism. It is simply a silly Bronze Age fairy tale and nothing more. To invoke God as the answer to how everything started is to present the problem of an infinite regress. Who made God? Who made God's creator? And so on.

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Point 1 -- Who broke the sound barrier is an historical question, not a scientific one, and so has different sets of proofs. A scientific question would be whether or not the sound barrier can be broken. The experiment can be replicated. Either Chuck Yaeger could hop back in a plane and do it again, or I could fire a 180 gr 7.62 x 54mm bullet out of the 20" barrel on a Mosin Nagant at the range. In either case, the sound barrier is broken, and the experiment in replicated. Can you replicate ecolution?

It is, but you missed the point. At the end of WWII Britain and the US agreed to share technology, including that pertaining to high speed flight. We gave the US our research for the Miles M52 project but the US returned nothing, apparently using the research to perfect their own record breaker. Can you replicate evolution? Oh good grief man its been replicated EVERY SINGLE DAY!!!!!! Its going on in your back yard. Its happening - right now - all around you. Its part of life on earth. For crying out loud just throw that bible in the bin and start thinking for yourself. Look how easy it is to breed. Its not just ourselves, we can breed all sorts of animals and plants (hey, nature made that a breeze!). Notice also how easy we breed new species. Thats utilising mutation, the cornerstone of evolution, although in this case we enforce it rather than relying on random interaction. Mutation is built in, its part of natural diversity to ensure a strong gene pool, and since unsuitable species tend to die off if the enviroments don't suit them, only the suitable mutations will do. Thats evolution. Its an observation made about life on earth.

 

Point 2 -- I don't find such a concept unpalatable. Can you prove beyond a reasonable doubt that we evolved from Homo Erectus? Could Homo Sapiens Sapiens and Homo Erectus have been paralell sprecies? It is almost certain the 'modern man' and Homo Sapiens Neanderthalensis lived side by side. Did one really evolve from the other?

I'm not a paleontologist nor do I have access to the relevant research. Please ask one for the required proof. The fact two species lived at the same time is irrelevant. Lots of species lived at the same time and funny enough still do today. Unless the americans are actually manufactured in detroit somewhere they're still flesh and blood like the rest of us. That means you arrived in this world because mummy and daddy bonked each other one night (perhaps in the back of a Detroit product?). Sex is part of the natural world and therefore since you are the result of such behaviour you also belong to the natural world. Human beings are animals. Thats all. We're not spritually superior beings in any way whatsoever, we're not seperated from the natural world except by our own mechanisation of the food supply, and our behaviour is nothing more than derived from the social animal we always were. As for primitive species, I see plenty of them on a saturday night in my local town - I suspect you have your own quota. Do these people evolve seperately? Unfortunately not.

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When it gets down to it, religion requires faith, and science requires proof. The Creationists have faith to back their religious theory. The Evolutionists, on the other hand, do not have proof of evolution. They have evidence, but they do not have conclusive, solid proof. Unless they can document evolution in it's entirety, and replicate their experiments it is not sufficent proof to be declared fact. I know this is impossible, but science has rigid standards and they must be upheld.

 

My own opinion: I find Evolution credible, but largely unprovable. It has logic but no solid proof so I view it as a philosophy, not necessarily science. Religiously, I have faith in God, so if the scripture supports Creationism than I believe in it. Either way, I do not find either theory mutually exclusive of one another.

 

First, let's define our terms. Creationism is a hypothesis. Evolution is a theory. There's a huge difference. A theory yields verifiable predictions. A hypothesis is, at best, a cute thought experiment. Evolution, more over, is a fact. Current theories of evolution are simply designed to explain the fact of evolution. Fact and theory are two different things. Take gravity as an example. It is a fact that gravity exists. The theory of relativity is a theory designed to explain gravity. If Einstein's theory was disproven tomorrow, would you come out and denounce gravity or those who believe in gravity? Would you say that it lacks credibility? And how can one who states "if the scripture supports Creationism than I believe in it" discuss credibility in the first place? The scriptures also state that the earth is flat; that it's held up by four pillars. Do you believe that, too? Do you also believe that we should stone to death disobedient children, or that a man who, on his wedding night, discovers that his wife isn't a virgin should stone her to death on her fathers doorstep? Do you believe in a virgin birth? Do you believe in the story of Exodus, which has not yielded a single shred of archaeological evidence?

 

And on the issue of credibility, read the first two books of Genesis. We are presented with two conflicting stories of creation within the span of a single page.

 

The bottom line is this: If you don't believe in evolution I want you to do me a favor. The next time you're sick with a viral infection, go to a doctor. When he prescribes antibiotics, request a form that was developed thirty years ago. What will happen? He will laugh at you. Why? Because viruses evolve an immunity to antibiotics. A small percentage of our genome consists of viruses, so would it be a radical statement to suggest that, if viruses can evolve, then so can we? I think not. I think it's more than probable.

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