Religion or not? (split from science thread)

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knobren
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Postby knobren » Mon Aug 20, 2007 11:20 am

seekingmyLord wrote:As I have said before, I will not argue the finer points of creationism vs. evolution, but I will point out how the minds of scientists work to fit everything into the evolution model, which can lead to erroneous conclusions.

I just watched a documentary about scientist retrieving a complete mammoth frozen in ice. The position of the mammoth, they agreed, suggested that the mammoth was in a pool of water when it froze. As they were carefully digging around it to free it from the surrounding ice, they found frozen vegetation, still green.

Then they said because of the depth of the aquatic vegetation they concluded it was thousands of years older than the mammoth. Now, it was just a foot or two under the mammoth's feet, so why is it assumed because it is under the mammoth that it is older rather than it was at the bottom of the pool when the mammoth froze? Would it be because scientists are programmed to think depth means age? I mean, I would imagine that a mammoth struggling to get out of the water would have stirred up the mud at the bottom of a pond, right?

I still cannot get around that, even if I did believe in evolution. Here is a mammoth swimming, according to the positioning of its body, and it gets frozen in ice. Maybe fell through the ice and was struggling to get out, but the scientists stated that the mammoths lived there, in Siberia, at a time when it was green--not covered with ice. So, they assume it when into the water and got stuck in the mud. Okay, but what about the green plant? If it was layers down from the mammoth buried in mud, instead of ice when the mammoth entered the pond, why would it be still green?

Sometimes scientists are so eager to prove their theories based on the evolutionary model that they don't see how the facts don't fit--they simply must fit so they make theories to make them fit. :roll: Circular reasoning.


I don't know what mammoth you are referring to, but perhaps you saw a poorly made documentary or didn't understand what they were saying. I found information on a frozen mammoth that might be the one you are talking about. http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/mammoths.html

The mammoth in question was not frozen in a lake. It apparently fell into an opening and sufficated on dirt from the landslide that fell in on top of it while it was struggling to escape. It froze in that position and became mummified. I didn't see anything about plants underneath this particular mammoth though. There may have been frozen plants in the fissure it landed in or the mummified mammoth may have shifted in another landslide and came to rest over older preserved plants, I suppose. I don't know what case you saw, so I don't know what they found.

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Postby ncmom » Mon Aug 20, 2007 12:38 pm

First I just want to point out this...Science is only right until it is proven wrong and scientist are always proving it wrong and changing the rules. So if scientist are always changing the rules why should I bother believing them? Also all of this boils down to a basic belief system, one side has theirs and the other has a different one.

Everything that is "scientific" was made up by another person. The dating thing, I look at this way, a person made up the scale and the process so unless they were perfect in every way they could have been wrong. Even if they tested and tested and tested and came up with the same results every time they still could have been wrong every time as could someone who tried to duplicate the results later. They more than likely used the first persons notes to set up the tests. The science community however took this dating process and decided it was right and started dating everything. This does not apply to just dating I was just using it as an example.

Furthermore if you don't believe creation that is your business but you need to realize that to believe evolution and the big bang theory or whatever theory you want to believe and that we all started out as single cell organisms takes just as much of a belief system as it does to believe that there is a divine creator. In fact, in my mind it actually takes more of a belief system.

As far as descendants of people go, all the people you dig up will have similarities but that is because we all came from people. And just because my dog and a hamster both have the same color fur does not mean that a long time ago they had a similar ancestor, it means there are only so many colors in the world. Elephants all descended from a common ancestor but it was an elephant and was never anything other than an elephant. I am not saying he couldn't adapt to where he lived by say changing his diet or maybe shedding some hair. People do that everyday. As long as something gets the nutrition it needs and the item is edible you eat what is available. Now looking at it this way evolution is a belief system just like religion. It takes just as much to believe evolution as it does anything else you just squeak the loudest so you get most of the attention.

Someday evolutionist will find out if they were wrong or right. I personally think that evolution is a bunch of malarkey, but I also think there is a huge difference in evolution and say one trait showing up more than another in a certian population. For instance, maybe there are more blonde's than brunettes. Then scientists, who can't stand not to name something, calling that process natural selection. Mutations happen all the time. If they didn't then there wouldn't be birth defects; however, I chalk that up to the fall of man. And as far as resistant diseases, how do you know 100% that they weren't there all along but you didn't see them until they had a proper place to live and breed? There is no real proof that these resistant diseases weren't already here and it just wasn't that the conditions available weren't advantageous to them. Scientist are always finding new things and saying they have been there all along unless it fits their theories to say otherwise, which goes back to my first sentence.

I have my belief system and nothing anyone will ever say to me will change my mind.

One thing I don't quite understand though is why if you (the scientific community) don't want religion and creation pushed down your throat then why you (again the scientific community) feel that is OK to push evolution down ours?

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Postby Theodore » Mon Aug 20, 2007 4:53 pm

When animals are caught in mud slides, you always find "lower" forms of animals / plants underneath. Smaller animals get caught faster and sink deeper, and plants and worms and so on are already at the bottom to start off with. What's more, you see the same stratification you see in any sedimentary rock formation. None of this is evidence for millions of years, or even thousands or hundreds of years. In fact, it seems to support the theory of a worldwide flood. Whether that in turns supports Creationism is of course up to your religious preconceptions.

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Postby seekingmyLord » Mon Aug 20, 2007 5:25 pm

knobren wrote:
I don't know what mammoth you are referring to, but perhaps you saw a poorly made documentary or didn't understand what they were saying. I found information on a frozen mammoth that might be the one you are talking about. http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/mammoths.html

[color=indigo]I did not misunderstand. That is what the scientists said on film.

It was the Jarkov mammoth and the scientist had interest in cloning the animal.

"The recovery of the Jarkov Mammoth from the permafrost of the Taimyr Peninsula, Siberia, was featured in the Discovery Channel’s television documentary 'Raising the Mammoth.'â€

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Postby Ramona » Tue Aug 21, 2007 10:44 am

knobren wrote:The scientific evidence suggests that humans and modern apes have a common ancestor.


Do you agree, then, with the theory that somewhere "out there" there exists a so-called "missing link" that will someday be found between H. sapiens sapiens and a species that is known to be an ancestor of today's great apes?

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Postby Ramona » Tue Aug 21, 2007 10:50 am

Theodore wrote:My problem with (macro)evolution is simply that it can't be observed, reproduced, or tested for - that's why it needs a nebulous "billions of years" to supposedly happen - therefore it's speculation, not science.


Do you believe that "micro-evolution" exists and is a fact, is an acceptable theory until proven false, or what exactly?

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Postby Theodore » Tue Aug 21, 2007 1:10 pm

Microevolution is misnamed, it's really just variation, mutation, and natural selection. No advancements are made in the species as a whole. Microevolution is easily observed happening around us, but it is not proof for macroevolution, which is the advancement of the species by progression to higher forms. Evolutionists cleverly started using the word "microevolution" to associate the two, to try and use the observable to prove the impossible. Reminds me of Planned Parenthood renaming baby to "fetus" - words do have power.

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Postby seekingmyLord » Wed Aug 22, 2007 6:04 am

Theodore wrote:Evolutionists cleverly started using the word "microevolution" to associate the two, to try and use the observable to prove the impossible. Reminds me of Planned Parenthood renaming baby to "fetus" - words do have power.

Which fits a more perceptible theory: EVERY living thing, when given the opportunity, takes the path of least resistance (especially the carnal nature within human beings).

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Postby knobren » Wed Aug 22, 2007 9:13 pm

http://alumni.indiana.edu/magazine/issu ... tion.shtml

Teaching Critical Thinking: Evolution in the Classroom

Excerpt:

Teaching teachers and students to think critically is key to the approaches taken by two IU professors with a keen interest in the teaching of evolution.

In a seminar called "Issues in Human Origins: Creation and Evolution," Robert Meier, Chancellors' Professor Emeritus of anthropology at IUB, challenged his students to examine the two opposing views from a scientific standpoint. One of the most fundamental differences between creationists and evolutionists, he explains, is their very approach to scientific discovery.

"Creation science has to conform to the biblical truth," says Meier. "Hard-liners hold to biblical literalism. It is a belief, and there are no alternatives. Scientific inquiry, on the other hand, does not begin by assuming that a law is there and trying to prove it. The foundation of science is questioning and skepticism."

Meier accordingly devoted several class sessions to the concept of "ignorance-based education," which he describes as "a learning strategy that emphasizes uncertainty, critical questioning, and the limits of knowledge."

Meier's own conclusion is this: "If you disallow organic evolution, you may as well do away with astronomy, physics, and biology. All of the sciences would crumble if it were to go."

In The Creation Controversy and the Science Classroom, biology professor Nelson lays out a blueprint for teachers broaching subjects related to evolution. Nelson's goal is to help educators produce a scientifically literate society that understands major theories such as evolution.

For his impact on undergraduates, his scholarly approach to teaching, and his contributions to undergraduate teaching, the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education honored Nelson in November as U.S. Professor of the Year. The only national award recognizing excellence in teaching, the Carnegie/CASE award is presented each year to four of the country's most outstanding undergraduate instructors, chosen from nearly 500 nominees. Nelson was the winner from a research and doctoral university.

"The interesting paradox is that we live in an era in which most people's jobs depend to an ever increasing extent on the application of modern theories of science. Yet the public either does not understand those theories or rejects them explicitly," he says.

Nelson examines traditional approaches to content, curricula, and teaching methods and suggests more effective alternatives. Traditional methods, for instance, have relied heavily upon passive learning; but active learning is particularly important when students confront controversial topics such as evolution.

"Science teachers teach conclusions more than processes," Nelson says. "The process in all higher-order critical thinking is comparison. The first thing teachers need to do is to get students to understand how scientists decide which answers are better."

Encouraging students to evaluate the consequences of various viewpoints, rather than to simply debate the strength of various pieces of evidence, Nelson believes, can "help students attain a richer understanding of the alternatives and of the benefits and consequences of accepting and rejecting them."

Creationists, for instance, believe they have nothing to lose by rejecting the theory of evolution, but everything to lose — their belief system and even their souls — if they accept it. Evolutionists, on the other hand, see "an immense payoff in the understanding of scientific phenomena," Nelson says.

Another strategy teachers can use is to help students understand intermediate positions between what he calls the "false dichotomies" of extreme views. For example, the creation-evolution argument is often portrayed as religious creationism vs. atheistic science, when, in fact, there are many degrees of acceptance of evolution.

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Postby knobren » Wed Aug 22, 2007 9:18 pm

http://www.geocities.com/lclane2/critical.html

Does the Discovery Institute promote critical thinking?


"The purpose of this policy is to foster critical thinking among students" - Cobb county Board of Education on textbook stickers.

"Critical analysis is part of science" Thomas Marshall, Ohio State University

"Federal Judge Rules that "Fostering Critical Thinking" About Evolution has Secular Purpose..." Staff, Discovery Institute
The Discovery Institute proposes teaching alternatives to biological evolution in science classes. It maintains that learning alternatives promotes "critical thinking". The Discovery Institute ignores the nature of "critical thinking" and how it's appropriate for science. Raymond S. Nickerson lists critical thinking skills, but which of these are essential to science? In fact Piaget's formal reasoning skills describe what scientists use. Piagetan skills central to science include handling abstractions, probabilistic thinking, controlling variables, designing experiments and testing hypotheses. Without basic scientific knowledge and some Piagetan skills, "critical thinking" can be propositional logic or merely rationalizing. Propositional logic is a Piagetan skill, but it's easily contaminated by dubious premises and is more central to rhetoric than to science.

Without basic scientific knowledge and Piagetan skills, students hear "two stories", learn to rationalize them and choose one by combining propositional logic with personal prejudices. Such "critical thinking" is better described as sophomoric reasoning. Many students already equate rationalizing with critical thinking. High science standards require formal reasoning skills, not rationalizing. Adults who ignore the logical fallacy of equating scientific and nonscientific explanations (in a science class) set a low intellectual standard.

The Discovery Institute also promotes dubious ideas such as scientific theories being little more than speculation, that members the National Academy are biased and unreliable, that science and apologetics differ little, that reading scientific literature is unimportant, that petitions are helpful in making scientific decisions, etc.

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Postby knobren » Wed Aug 22, 2007 9:21 pm

http://www.indiana.edu/~ensiweb/fair.tes.html

FAIR TESTS: BASIC MODEL FOR CRITICAL THINKING IN SCIENCE
How Do Scientists Pick the Best Explanation?
1. Define the problem or question clearly.
2. List two or more alternative solutions or answers
3. Find or develop "Fair Tests", which ....
a. do not have the same basis as any of the alternative solutions
b. could have supported two or more of those alternatives
4. Consider the results of the fair tests
5. Apply advanced criteria, including (as appropriate)....
a. Strength of each fair test
b. Concordance (agreement) among the fair tests
c. Strength of the alternative solutions


Seven Basic Scientific Criteria for Choosing the "Best Explanation"
A Scientific Explanation is Best if...
1. it best matches the data from a fair test.
2. it is confirmed by multiple independent fair tests.
3. initially conflicting data can be shown to agree.
4. the fair test that supports it is particularly strong.
5. there are no conflicting lines of scientific evidence.
6. the alternatives are seriously defective conceptually
7. the overall weight of evidence is greatly in its favor.


CONSIDER A SAMPLE PROBLEM
1. Problem: How did the great diversity of life originate?

2. Alternative Solutions:
a All living things were created at the same time. Basis: traditional biblical interpretation
b. Different types of living things were created at different times. Basis: modified biblical interpretation
c. Different types evolved from earlier types. Basis: inferred from difficulties in the classification of living things: some organisms not fitting into discrete categories


3. Fair Test #1: Look at fossil collections and their existence in time (could support any of the alternatives)
- If alt (a), should see fossils of all organisms mixed together at all levels (for all time), in no particular sequence.
- If alt (b), should see staggered appearance of different types, with novel traits suddenly appearing, and showing little or no change to the present.
- If alt (c), should see staggered appearance of different types, showing gradually accumulating modifications of traits from earlier forms to the present.


4. Result of Fair Test #1: Observations and dating of fossils clearly and consistently provide data consistent with alternate (c), and not with (a) or (b).

5. Other Fair Tests to Consider: Look at (apply the previous steps to any one of these)....
A. chromosome banding patterns, comparing different living groups.
B. amino acid sequences in proteins, comparing different living groups.
C. base pair sequences in DNA, comparing different living groups.
D. DNA hybridization tests between different groups.
E. comparative anatomy studies of different groups.
F. comparative studies of development of different groups.
G. comparative immune response studies of different groups.


6. Final Analysis: ALL of these fair tests have produced results consistent only with alternate (c).


© 1999 ENSI (Evolution & the Nature of Science Institutes) www.indiana.edu/~ensiweb
This material may be copied only for noncommercial classroom teaching purposes, and only if this source is clearly cited.

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Postby knobren » Wed Aug 22, 2007 9:26 pm

http://www.ncseweb.org/resources/articl ... 8_2005.asp

Why Teach Evolution?
Andrew J. Petto, Ph.D.

Department of Biological Sciences, University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee (http://www.uwm.edu/~ajpetto)

From the early 20th century onward, teaching biological evolution in the public schools has been a contentious issue. Although a series of federal court decisions has upheld the proper place of biological evolution in the curriculum, the struggle over evolution in the curriculum continues. Recent conflicts over the content of science education standards in many states have arisen precisely because evolution was awarded its proper status as the fundamental theoretical construct underpinning modern biology. Why does teaching evolution remain so socially and politically controversial? Is it “fairâ€

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Postby Theodore » Wed Aug 22, 2007 10:43 pm

Evolutionists beginning with the assumption that evolution is true are no different from creationists beginning with the assumption that the Bible is true. Sure, the Bible may be somewhat more specific, but in the areas where truth / falsehood can be verified (historical / archeological evidence, etc.), the Bible has always been found to be correct. In fact, it's so accurate that archeologists have used it successfully to locate buried cities that everyone believed were just myths. There is also a great deal of evidence for a worldwide flood, if you are actually willing to base your interpretations on just the observable scientific evidence. There is no possible way the Grand Canyon formed gradually, for instance - open any textbook and read the part about rivers, you'll see what I mean.

Bottom line, evolutionists just believe that anyone who doesn't agree with them is brainwashed. You're not allowed to use your critical thinking skills to come to a different conclusion - that's scientific heresy, and you're immediately drummed out of your position and your papers are rejected. The only thing missing from the good ol' days is burning at the stake. Evolution (macro) isn't science, it's just majority opinion, and the history of evolution is full of fraud and deception by scientists who were convinced they were right but couldn't find any evidence to back up their beliefs. That's religious fanaticism.

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Postby seekingmyLord » Thu Aug 23, 2007 5:00 am

Knobren, most boards I have been on and moderated don't allow cut and pasting copyrighted materials, particularly the bulk of any articles, because it puts the board at risk of being of copyright infringement accusations. Plus, the length of the posts can cause people to lose interest. (Unless it is your intention to win the argument by causing disinterest.) Instead, may I suggest you use a small excerpt or a summary with the highlights and the link.

=^..^=

I agree with Theodore. Both camps are based on circular reasoning, the difference is at the center of the creationist's circle is the Creator and the evidence He gave us within the Bible, and at the center of the evolutionist's circle is what has been created and accepted by other men based only on what he can see and or touch, because only such things are real in the mind of the scientist, so God is not real or is not of significance in regards to the research for the answer of origins.

Now, there may have been a time when people blindly based their beliefs on the Bible and were not as educated in science, but that time is not now in our age of information. People of both these circles use critical thinking, they just happen to arrive at differing conclusions. This is real science at work! Now if people would drop the politics... but, that will not happen, because people of both camps have to have a central belief, so they remain within their own circle of reasoning. :|

Lastly--and this is the real difference between creationist and evolutionist--the creationist will admit that God is the center of their circle of reasoning, when it comes to origins, and evolutionists are in denial that they use circular reasoning, as if their critical thinking has linear purity... :roll: ...but, history has shown that as long as there is a possibility of monetary gain in any fashion, science will remain politically controlled subject to its perceived value, and so scientists are only interested in staying within and fiercely defending the evolution circle of reasoning, because it is more valuable for them to do so.]


=^..^=

This is why I think one of the best quotes is by Yoda:
"You must unlearn what you have learned."

One must look outside of his circle of reasoning to see what one has missed seeing, because not everything worth seeing is easily seen. The best of life is not something we can touch or see, but what we feel. Biochemical responses? Possibly, but what triggered those responses... something that could not be touched or seen--something unreal?

Isn't science, itself, is a just thought process, biochemical responses. Can science prove its own existence outside the thoughts of men? You cannot touch it, you cannot see it, and yet you believe in it. You are attracted to its logic and purity. How is believing in science at the center of your circle so different than believing in God? I know only one significant difference, man controls science, by contrast man cannot control God. Isn't that the heart of all this arguing? Man wants to think he controls his own destiny and there is no God who can destroy all He created at any time.

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Postby momo3boys » Thu Aug 23, 2007 7:07 am

knobren wrote:
Meier's own conclusion is this: "If you disallow organic evolution, you may as well do away with astronomy, physics, and biology. All of the sciences would crumble if it were to go."


How does disallowing organic evolution do away with the laws of physics? We can observe gravity, and density and motion. These have nothing to do with each other. Astronomy, is like evolution and a very interesting debate in itself. But disallowing one does not negate the other. Biology, of the natural history side, does not need evolution to survive. How does identifying plants and animals survive only if you know what "family" they go in. They are still amazing creations! A study of creation all by themselves.

Here is a question that has always bothered me about Macro evolution.

If gradual changes had to occur over millions of years in order for things to survive, what happens when things changes suddenly? Mass extinction, like dinosaurs and end of ice ages? How do you get amazing animals like geckos, that have feet that cling to the walls on a molecular level, and plants that eats bugs, or smell like raw meat? Flowers that bloom at night, and moths to pollinate them? there are so many creatures that are symbiotic, how do they evolve that way, wouldn't they all just die out if it didn't work out the first time?
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