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Sunday, April 20, 2008

Dawkins the Firebreathing Baptist


Ben Stein's "Expelled" continues to get disciples of evolution so worked up they might remind one of the crazed robot Ash from the film "Alien."

Perhaps one of the things that upsets some of the high apostles of the religion of evolution (when I say "evolution" I'm referring to the common understanding of it, which includes both materialism and naturalism) is that they let their guard down during interviews for the film, and for the first time many people are seeing some of their attitudes in relative transparency.

For many years I (and others) have called evolution, materialism and naturalism a religion. After all, not only does it require at least as much faith to believe in, once you understand how impossible is the whole scenario, but many of it's adherents cling to it with a fervor that would make some Baptists look like slackers.

For instance, consider this review of the film from Mary Ann Kreitzer at Spero. It examines not only the film, but some of the reaction to it by disciples of evolution:

The evolutionists are trashing the film, of course, mostly, one suspects, because they don’t come across very well. No doubt they are embarrassed at their own rants. If anyone appears like a religious fanatic in the movie, it’s Richard Dawkins who reads from his book, The God Delusion and sounds like a Baptist preacher attacking Satan, or in this case, the Old Testament God. Dawkins is a true believer who holds his atheism with religious fervor and treats anyone who disagrees with ridicule and contempt. What an ironic delight to see him get some of his own medicine.

Indeed. If this were simply about scientific facts, not only would those facts speak for themselves, but any idiot who tried to deny reality could be casually dismissed with hardly a rise in blood pressure or pulse rate.

But the mania displayed by evolution disciples belies such a conclusion. It reveals evolution as not scientific fact, but a philosophical and even a religious interpretation of scientific evidence.

None of us was around when organisms supposedly evolved, none of us was around when dinosaurs died out, none of us was around when the earth was formed and none of us was around when the universe came into being. We cannot even scientifically reproduce these events; we can only examine the evidence of the past and make guesses about what happened and how it happened.

Yet some arrogantly contend that these guesses are fact. Why? Because men with letters after their names say so.

They are the new high priests of our time; they are the high priests of the religion of Evolution, which says (a) there is no God, (b) the universe came to be in its current state with zero assistance from a supernatural force, and (c) man is the supreme intellect.

And they hate this film because as time goes on, and as more people take a closer look at evolution, they are finding the emperor has no clothes.

Kreitzer's review is very insightful and informative; I'd encourage you to read it.

And though I've seen several extended trailers for "Expelled" and heard Stein speak about his film at some length, I haven't seen it yet. I plan to do so this week, however.

If you're honestly interested in an objective examination of evolution, I'd encourage you to see it soon, too.


47 comments:

Rob Davidson said...

The reason Dawkins is angry is that biology is constantly being attacked by know-nothing people with ridiculous, evidence-free ideas, wasting the time and resources of researchers. I think any biologist should be annoyed by the colossal squandering and interference that results from this pseudoscience. Why didn't these so-called Christians spend the millions of this film on poverty or addressing climate change? Scientists who spend their lives doing useful things are sick of the fritterers who want to drag the rest of us down into their pit.

Bob Ellis said...

Rob, I'm sure one of the reasons they didn't spend millions on a film about climate change is that if there is one area currently passing itself off as "science" which is more bereft of actual science than evolution, it's global warming.

(Poverty WOULD be another good topic to do a film on, but liberals wouldn't like it any better: most of the poverty in the world could be solved with more economic freedom, but liberals insist more socialist government control is the answer).

Please struggle to understand this truth: evolution theory is not science, it is an ideological interpretation of science.

There's a big, big difference. And I think that's one of the things this film would like to communicate.

David said...

Ever notice how creationists accuse evolution of being a religion, but "evolutionists" never accuse creationism of being a science? It is almost as if both sides know that religion is not something to be proud of, but rationality is.

On another note, many posters seem to associate evolution (a scientific theory) with liberalism (a political ideology). As a conservative who understands the scientific method enough to reject creationism, I find this annoying.

By the way, not only do I "believe" in evolution, I also believe in gravity, bacteria, relativity, and a whole lot of other phenomena that the "religion" of science has discovered.

Bob Ellis said...

David, the "religion of science" didn't discover gravity, bacteria, etc. Those are scientific discoveries; in fact, many of the greats of science believed in creation.

The religion of evolution, however, is an ideological and often theological interpretation of those scientific discoveries.

This distinction, between actual science and the interpretation of science, is a distinction apparently lost on you, as it is many believers in evolution.

That is why I and some others note parallels between evolution theory and liberalism: they both tend to make philosophical and often theological assumptions and develop positions based on those assumptions, and they usually arrive at similar theological conclusions: there is no God, and even if there was, he'd be irrelevant.

I used to be a believer in evolution, until I realized there are theories which better fit the scientific evidence, and until I discovered the fundamental inviability of evolution, naturalism and materialism to explain the universe. In other words, they cannot be true within their own framework.

Once you're able to separate the INTERPRETATION of scientific evidence from the scientific evidence itself, the pursuit of truth for you will be ready to begin.

David said...

Sorry Bob, but science IS partly the interpretation of evidence. The larger part of science is creating predictions from those interpretations, and seeing if they hold up.

In any event, even though it seems that conservatives are usually the ones that believe in creationism, liberals believe in lots of stupid ideas as well (astrology, talking with the dead, ESP, etc.) Irrationality knows no politics.

I hope in a 100 years or so religious folks will have separated evolution and God in their minds, the same way they eventually did with Heliocentrism. Until then, y'all should just homeschool your kids.

Marc said...

What amazes me is the staggering ignorance of comparing evolution theory to a religious faith.

Evolution theory is just the same as gravitational theory; and most of the great scientists of history lived long prior to Darwin's observations: to mention this is a straw man argument.

You'll note also that Darwin never concerned himself with HOW life arose, just how it developed into what we observe today.

Scientific theories (biological, physical, etc.) make predictions which are later observed.

Faith makes statements which are never proven (nor can they be) and therefore the are two are in direct contravention.

Proof again that some people wouldn't know the truth if you wrapped it around a brick and beat them senseless with it.

Bob Ellis said...

But David, remember that those interpretations are not the science itself. A color blind person will not interpret all colors correctly, just as someone with little or no training in a foreign language will not interpret a foreigner's language correctly.

A wise person recognizes this shortcoming, but many evolutionists arrogantly believe that any idea they come up with should be accepted as "fact."

It might surprise you but my family does homeschool, and we're teaching our children both creation and evolution. Since evolution is the dominant interpretation of science in our society, it'd be foolish to neglect teaching them about evolution.

I believe when the objective mind examines them both the conclusion will be that the philosophies of evolution, naturalism and materialism have far more insurmountable problems than does creation or ID.

Of course assuming objectivity is apparently too much these days.

Common Sense said...

Bob,

Why is it so easy for you to accept that God exists with no one having created Him, yet so difficult for you to accept evolution? There is no evidence of any kind for God other than ancient stories, many of which require enormous suspension of beliefs in the real world as we know it, yet there are mountains of evidence that all support evolution and none of which contradicts it?

Hasn't it ever occurred to you that had you been born into a Muslim country and culture, you would be a Muslim today instead of a Christian, believing the truth about God to be in the Koran instead of the bible?

Since you don't "believe" in evolution (more truthful would be that you don't understand it but regardless), do you also not believe that the universe is nearly 14 billion years old, rather than 6,000 as the bible claims? If so, how do you explain the light from suns that have travelled through space for billions of years to be perceptible to us?

Susan said...

Bob,

I don't think anyone would be surprised to hear that you homeschool.

I am curious to know what scientific idea ID has predicted.

Anonymous said...

"If you're honestly interested in an objective examination of evolution, I'd encourage you to see it soon, too."

SPOILER ALLERT!

This film does not objectively examine evolution and it doesn't even claim to. I don't know how you got that idea.

Jonn said...

When it comes to the less than intelligent and informed attacks on science, and in particular evolution, by religious bigots, the German saying 'Gegen die Dummheit kämpfen die Götter selbst vergebens' comes to mind.
Ben Stein and the rest of Goebbels' modern day disciples are willing to use the most outrageous lies to promote their (lack of) understanding and ideas.
When will the American public wake up to the fact that they are duped by the religious propaganda like the Germans were duped by the Nazi propaganda, or indeed the Muslims are by their fundy leaders' propaganda?

Common Sense said...

Bob,

I left a prior comment but it has not posted so I'm giving it another shot.

1) What makes you so certain that you know the truth when only 30% of the earth's population can be classified as being Christians and the other 70% disagree with your set of religious beliefs? (That's not even counting all the Christians who have somewhat different beliefs than you.) Every religious person believes they know the truth yet clearly that can't be so. The same is true of all religious beliefs throughout mankind's history.
2) Why do you find it so plausable that God could exist without being created but our universe could not? If you think about it, wouldn't God himself be even less plausable to arise out of nothing or have no beginning?
3) Has it ever occurred to you that had you been born into a Muslim country and culture, you would believe the Koran to be the truth and not the bible? Doesn't that make you realize anything about human beliefs or the problem with them when they are only based on subjective faith rather than objective evidence?
4) Contrary to your opinions and others like you, evolution is not a theory and it is not a belief. It is science and it is fact by definition. There are mountains of evidence that back it up and nothing in the fossil record that contradict it. Why do you think that is?
5) Why should you be surprised that the vast majority of scientists who spend their entire lives studying biology are nearly unanimous in their views on evolution? Could it simply be because they understand it better than you do? How much do you know about it to be so certain that it is false? Are you an expert or does it merely contradict your world view so you render it false by default? Ignorance is no excuse.

Homeschooling your children about evolution as the dominant interpretation of science in society today while teaching them creation is the truth should be against the law although of course it isn't...at least not yet, perhaps one day hopefully it will be as your ignorance should not be allowed to be passed on to your offspring much to their detriment. You are living in ancient times and we are now living in the 21st century. We know a lot more now than we did 2000 years ago or even 200 years ago. You should wake up because you're in a very, very deep state of delusion and if you stop to think about it, it should become quite apparent to you. But of course you can't do that....you're in way too deep now.

Anonymous said...

You should be ashamed of yourselves for falling for this film hook, line, and sinker. I guess it's not surprising considering the complete ignorance you have to evolutionary theory and the history of science; the best framework available to mankind for finding our way in the universe. I suggest you study the subject in earnest next time if you have indeed studied it at all in the first place. Nearly every point made in the defense of whatever it is you claim to believe, which is nebulously ambiguous enough because to state it clearly and concisely would result in it being picked apart with logical arguments, is 100% moot.

Theists participating in the methodology of science and then discovering something has NO BEARING WHATSOEVER on the factuality of your believe in god or their own believe in god, plain and simple. The leaps in logic many theists take who are trying to provide a scientific basis for their religion are quite glaring!

gawddawg said...

Mr.Ellis, what a fine example you are of an educated idiot. Your proud assertion that you teach your children creationism and evolution, perhaps to demonstrate your open-mindedness, lays it out bare. Try being truly open minded, as difficult as that is for 'mere mortals' like us. You can revel in the pathetic pleasure of mocking at tall poppies, or try and listen. The joke could be on you.

Bob Ellis said...

Has anyone else noticed how closed-minded these evolution-believing so-called "seekers of truth" are?

You can't disagree with them without being vehemently branded as living in ancient times, being a flat-earther, etc.

I think they've proven the overall point of Stein's movie (that there is NO intellectual freedom or rational debate when it comes to "evolution). They're some of the most closed-minded intellectual bigots you'll ever come across--all the while, desperately hanging onto a theory which HAS NO PROOF.

I love it when a plan comes together!

Tim said...

Bob, why don't you apply the same doubt to the stories of Creation as you do to the stories of Evolution?
None of us were around when the bible was written. The bible is just stories told by men with no letters after their names, as evolution is just stories told by men with letters after their names.
The only demonstrable difference between the two is that the tellers of Evolution offer hypotheses, experiments, and results that anyone is welcome to repeat and view the results with their own eyes.
The tellers of Creation have no such proof to offer for their own stories, often offering up such fulfilling quotes as "proof denies faith" and other such tasty morsels that keep the spiritual fires burning with satisfaction.
Doesn't it seem slightly odd to you that you choose one set of stories to apply credence to over the other, when the first is by far the more convincing?
I agree with you the "religious evolutionaries" are an irritatingly close-minded bunch, but not any moreso than "religious creationists", which you seem to be.
You're the pot calling the kettle black. (And no, Omarosa, that is not a racist statement)

Bob Ellis said...

Tim, thanks for your thoughtful comment.

None of us was around when the Bible was written, but someone obviously was, which was my point. There is no record of what supposedly happened millions or billions of years ago, yet evolutionists claim to know beyond a shadow of a doubt exactly what has happened for the last alleged 13 billion years...until the next theory variation comes along, anyway.

I used to believe in evolution, so I've examined both sides of the argument. And when I realized that creation (or ID) theories better fit the evidence, and that evolution/materialism/naturalism had insurmountable problems, I did what any intellectually honest person would do: admitted I had been wrong and chose the better explanation.

The average evolutionist (as evidenced by many of the comments here) is unwilling to even consider anything else. Why? It isn't really an intellectual matter, but a philosophical and theological one. If there is an almighty intelligent designer out there who created us and everything in the universe, we just might be accountable to Him--a thought many evolutionists cannot bear to even ponder.

Mono said...

Bob, I understand how sorry you feel for your poor ol' self now. Those "evolution-believing" thugs!

But if you REALLY believe in what you say you believe, why are you avoiding answering some interesting questions (like those that Common Sense put forward)?

I'll repost one of those questions, but find and answer the others.

So, second question from Common Sense's post:

"2) Why do you find it so plausable that God could exist without being created but our universe could not? If you think about it, wouldn't God himself be even less plausable to arise out of nothing or have no beginning?"

Anonymous said...

Sadly folks, trying to apply rational argument with a person like Bob is a waste of time. He clearly does not understand what a scientific theory is and does not have the intellectual capacity to get it into his head that the fact of evolution is as solid as the fact of gravity.

The theory of gravitation remains "true" because it has not been falsified". the same applies to the "theory" of evolution. Science works by setting up a testable hypothesis and seeing how well it matches abservable facts. Darwin's unique insight into how species develop has never been falsified by any subsequent experiment or observable fact. the world is exactly as you would expect it to be if evolution were absolutely true. Although Darwin could not have known, evolution is bolstered by later scientific discoveries in molecular biology. All life relies on DNA. There are transitional fossils and we find more evey year.

intelligent design, or creationism, as i prefer to call it, is not a scientific theory because it does not postulate a falsifiable hypothesis.

So folks, I have wasted more than enough of my time dealing with this nonsense and i suggets you save yours, because Bob ain't listening. He might, of course, decide to post this blog, but only so he can come up with some additional fatuous arguments.

I pity the children of the world whose education is stunted by the believers in sky faeries (pick any one of a few hundred).

Lepus said...

Calling atheism a religion is like calling 'bald' a hair-style.

Thomas Theobald said...

You guys seem to be forgetting that in Internetland, there is a particular animal called the "troll" - and Bob is one. Don't fall for it. Just feel sorry for his kids (assuming he's even telling the truth about that), and contemplate how one could be such a complete moron as to claim there is no evidence for a principle that has had tens of thousands of researchers publishing for their entire lives on its various nuances.

Have pity and sympathy, but no mercy, for that kind of willful ignorance.

T

Bob Ellis said...

Mono, unlike evolutionists I don't pretend to know everything. But consider this:

Everything in the universe has a beginning; perhaps it's one of the natural laws of the universe. But what if a being existed outside the universe, independent of those laws. Might such a being, as difficult as it is for finite beings to understand it, not require a beginning?

You see, the framework of creation theory allows for such a possibility, as difficult as it may be to grasp.

Evolution/naturalism/materialism on the other hand allows for no supernatural force whatsoever. So how did something (the universe) manage to come from nothing? Especially when we know that the laws of nature do not allow something to come from nothing? How would stars and planets act in contradiction to the laws of nature, where all matter tends toward disorganization, and manage to coalesce and form solid, functional matter? How would life form from lifeless elements? How would new genetic information arise at all, much less in a coherent fashion?

These things cannot happen without design, without outside intelligent influence. Therefore, eolution/naturalism/materialism is an impossible proposition within its own framework.

I don't feel sorry for myself. I do feel a bit of pity for people who are hopelessly married to a philosophical theory they believe constitutes "science" and can't even consider the possibility that it could be mistaken.

Bob Ellis said...

Anonymous 8:02, I know you've done your best, like a good evolution disciple, to insult my beliefs and try to deflect attention to your naked evolutionary emperor, but you've only displayed your own ignorance in doing so.

You cite gravity and evolution as if they were on an equal plane. If you really knew anything at all about science, you'd realize that gravity is OBSERVABLE and TESTABLE. Evolution is neither. It is a theory, a philosophy really, which attempts to explain the origins of what we see today.

In your mindless devotion to your religion of evolution, you think that anything you see is "proof of evolution" and "there can be no science without belief in evolution," when in fact most science operates completely independent of evolution and exists on its own merits, regardless of whether evolution is true or false. In other words, evolution theory has absolutely no bearing whatsoever on the majority of science.

Common Sense said...

Bob,

Have you ever thought about what powers and capabilities you have given credit to your imaginary God? Do you realize there are about 10 billion stars in an average galaxy and there are about 10 billion galaxies that we can observe in the universe? So your God according to ancient myths just snapped his fingers (or whatever he used) and one day just designed all of that down to every minor detail of their design, including all of their orbits and placement relationships with each other, right?

As for species on this planet, do you realize that over 99% of all species that ever lived on this earth are now extinct? Some designer, huh? And he sure must be fond of beetles as there are about 350,000 known species, and new species are frequently discovered. Estimates put the total number of beetle species, described and undescribed, at between 5 and 8 million. Why so many? Just to show off or what? Couldn't he just design a few and then move onto the next critter he dreams up?

Look, I agree it's amazing we are alive. It's enough to make one want to / be able to believe in a God. But when you truly examine the evidence and some of the logical arguments against God (and most certainly any particular set of religious beliefs over all the others, it just falls apart.

There is nothing to believe in when it comes to evolution. It is a fact no matter how much it destroys your worldview. How it all began remains a mystery although there are several plausible theories that exist, far more plausible than the famous ancient answer that Goddidit.

Lastly, if evolution has "absolutely no bearing whatsoever on the majority of science, why do you suppose that the vast majority of all scientists in all fields of science accept evolution and reject creation?

Common Sense said...

Correction: I did not mean to say that suns are in orbit. Ironically, that was an ancient religous belief which used to presume that the earth was the center of the universe. I meant to refer to the planets and moons within those solar systems. So many details for God to plan out that day, huh?

I also meant to remind you that you give credit to God for knowing what's on the mind of every single person that's alive at every single moment of the day. And who and how to answer prayers for (although all tests prove prayers to be worthless exercises). If a mother's sick child is prayed for to gets well and does, praise be God but if the child dies, no blame to God. Anything seem at all biased in that concept to you?

You're right about one thing at least Bob...God is indeed outside of this universe as he lives inside the universe of your imagination and others like you who either for the fear of hell fire or the brain washing you've gone through, are all able to believe in things like talking snakes, virgin births, men from dust, women from ribs, a 6,000 year old universe and all the rest of that nonsense that comes from civilized mankind's infantile attempts to describe the world around them. You think nothing of it. It's in the bible, that's all you need to know, huh? That's all the evidence you need. Right, that's very good evidence....much better than the fossil record.

Bob Ellis said...

Common Sense, you raise some good issues.

Yes, I've thought about the power and capability of my very real God; they're staggering to contemplate, and makes me appreciate Him all the more. He didn't snap his fingers and do it in one day, but six. He could have done it in one, or even one second, but chose to do it in six. Why? I don't know; maybe to illustrate it's ordered nature?

The issue of the huge number of species God created is another interesting one. God certainly seems to like variety, and with his kind of power, there would certainly be no need to limit his creativity.

As for the destruction of so many, that is a consequence of man's sin. God created the universe in a perfect state, which meant not death or disease, and put humans in charge of creation. But humans chose to trust their own wisdom more than God's (kind of like they still do today) and as a consequence of stepping out of God's sphere of protection, humans took the creation under their dominion out of God's protection as well. So we have the death, disease, and disasters we know today. One disaster, the global flood of Genesis, likely wiped out many of the species which are now extinct, or the likely climate changes to the planet after the flood made it difficult for some organisms to thrive.

You're still missing the point when you say there's nothing to believe when it comes to evolution. You're not alone, but you're unable to separate the evidence from the interpretation of the evidence.

Regards your final issue, I believe the majority of scientists believe the theory of evolution for a couple of reasons.

One is simple peer pressure, such as has been displayed in this tread: "you're a dummy, backward, primitive, whatever" if you don't believe it. Everybody wants to be seen as smart, right? Everybody wants to be a part of the herd, right? Nobody wants to stand apart from the group, right? Scientists, no matter how much they may hate it, are human beings too, and susceptible to the same emotional responses as the rest of us.

The other reason I believe the theory of evolution is so popular among scientist, and many in the general population, is that, when taken in conjunction with the full tenets of materialism and naturalism (as it usually is), it liberates us from moral law, eternal accountability, and religious expectations. In other words, we go from a religious system which says we must act a certain way in order to enjoy eternity, to one which allows us to do whatever we want with no eternal repercussions. Short-term license is very attractive, and most people will embrace it when given what they perceive as a choice.

Thanks for some rational points, Common Sense. You are obviously not in the company of Ash.

Bob Ellis said...

Well, Common Sense, I didn't think you were in the company of Ash, but after reading your "Correction" comment, maybe I was mistaken.

You miss two important points about the Christian faith and the Bible: (1) If God is powerful enough to create the universe, then talking snakes, virgin births et al are a cake walk for him; (2) though I doubt you can be objective enough to see it, the fossil record, geology, and most of science lines up better with a Biblical worldview than it does with evolution theory.

An open mind is a powerful thing; you should give it a try sometime.

Anonymous said...

Bob Ellis is an IDiot

Anonymous said...

Bob,

Creation is one possible explanation for the beginnings of the universe. However, it is not a scientific one.

Yes, science is comprised of both well established fact and theories which have yet to be proven conclusively.

And left to that end, God and creation sound like they fit, but the key point you overlook is that science offers detailed, natural, and mutually supportive explanations.

Creation is a process that you cannot explain. It amounts to saying "God did it" and leaving it at that.

And without an understanding of the underlying mechanics behind creation -- or in a pseudo-theological sense, the force God wields -- it remains a supernatural explanation that can only be taken seriously in a religious context.

It lacks substance in a field where the goal is to examine the world in it's present state and trace things back to their origins.

Ideally, God should be the endgame in a long series of compounding theories that mutually support one another. Like the boards of a bridge form to make a whole, point A is connected to point B.

But creationism flys in the face of science as it bridges a huge gap between the universe as we know it and God in one swoop.

And worse yet, God is offered as the proof itself for creation. Are we building a bridge here or a loop de loop?

I don't suppose I will ever understand how you can comfortably accept "God did it" as an explanation in a scientific sense.

-Rich

Richard said...

Bob, I'm not sure you really understand what evolution is. It is NOT an explanation of creation. It does NOT say "there is no Creator": scientists are still trying to work out how life started, so we'll get back to you on that one.

It IS the way that life develops and changes from one species to the next. It explains why preferential genes in one generation are passed onto the next, eventually leading to the development of distinct species in different environments. Do you understand why this is an important difference?

I have one other question for you actually. You say that everything was created in 6 days, in accordance to the Bible, and yet earlier you mentioned that no-one was around when the dinosaurs died out, so how can anyone really know what happened back then?

That doesn't make sense to me. Are you a Creationist or not? Are you saying dinosaurs died out before man evolved? Or are you saying God created everything in six days? Or are you saying dinosaurs never existed, they're just lies planted by God to fool us for... some reason that eludes me? Consistency, please. Unless that's too much to ask.

Bob Ellis said...

Rich, I think you've bought into the evolutionist propaganda about creationism.

Just as the numerous great scientists of history who believed in creation, I and other creationists don't just look at the universe and say "God did it" and shove our heads in the sand. We'd like very much to understand more about how God did what he did, and how his creation works.

In fact, in believing in him and in many cases having a spiritual relationship with him, we find our appreciation of science and our curiosity about it enhanced by our belief in God.

Creation is every bit as scientific an examination of the universe as is evolution/materialism/naturalism. The only exception is that for original causation and the occasional intervention, we see supernatural effort. In other words, we don't limit our curiosity to the natural laws of this universe. If God created everything, then he is the author of science, and the author of the natural laws which govern it.

Ironically, the materialist/naturalist/evolutionist paradigm requires supernatural forces in order to be possible; matter doesn't come into existence from nothing, matter doesn't work itself into higher states of order, and life doesn't spring from lifelessness. All of these things (the beginning of matter, organization of that matter, and the spark of life itself) had to happen, regardless of whether you believe creation or materialism/naturalism/evolution. But since the materialist/naturalist/evolutionist has tunnel vision and will only consider naturalistic causes, there is no way--according to the laws of the universe--that anything could exist, much less exist in the state we currently observe.

Creationism is thus more plausible within its own framework than is materialism/naturalism/evolution. And believing that God created everything in no way stifles or diminishes scientific curiosity. If anything, it increases it, since in understanding science better, we understand God better.

Bob Ellis said...

Richard, I understand exactly what evolution is, and I understand that there are variations of it which include "theistic evolution" which tries to marry traditional atheistic evolution to a belief in God. However, that is not the dominant meaning when evolution is discussed. The dominant one takes place in a universe where there is no God, and in examining origins, the question must go all the way back to how life originated in the first place, and in answering THAT question you have to ultimately go back to how the universe came to be in the first place. You cannot really compartmentalize the questions.

We know God created the universe in six days because that's what God told Moses; it's written in the book of Genesis. No human was there, until Adam and Eve on Day Six, and there is no surviving written record of creation earlier than the account written by Moses. But God was there, and I don't think He has any reason to lie or mislead about it. And since not a single thing in the Bible has been proved false, I think it's safe to believe what it says about creation.

The dinosaurs were around at the same time as man, created only one day before humans. They likely died out after the global flood. There are indications from the Bible and from geological observations that the climate of the earth is very different now than it was in the early years after creation. They likely were unable to survive in the cooler, drier climate post-flood.

I know you're too closed-minded to even consider this, but you asked, so here's your answer.

Thanks for proving the obtuseness of the evolutionary mindset which Expelled points to. Yours and most of the comments here just continue to illustrate the accuracy of Stein's film.

Anonymous said...

How wonderfully ironic that the insult of choice levelled at the rational is to call us 'religious'. It indirectly affirms the atheist's antipathy towards religion.

Bob Ellis said...

Most serious evolutionists believe the theory with an ardor that frankly puts most Christians to shame.

Since there is so much about evolution theory that is unproven, unverifiable, impractical, and flat-out impossible according to the laws of nature, there's enough faith involved in believing evolution theory to rival the faith of most Christians.

There is usually a worship of human reason as well, so the main tenets of a religious faith are present.

Anonymous said...

Reading these conversations I'm struck with one odd fact. When presented with a line of logic Bob reverts to the "your all closeminded" theme while at no time opening his mind to the possiblity that life and the universe are not as simple as he'd like to believe.

I present that you Bob are close minded. When given FACTS I personally am willing to weigh the information and come to my own conlusions.

But what proof have you presented as of yet that supports your hypothsis that Creations (ID) is in fact correct?

Religious ideology isn't fact. It is in fact belief. So please.. Find and present the supporting evidince for what you claim is true.

Bob Ellis said...

What's the matter, Anonymous 2:57, does the shoe not feel so good on the other foot?

I have news for you: evolution isn't fact. It is supposition and belief. That's one of the key points of Stein's film, and a key point I've been repeatedly making here...and the fact that it should be so obvious to the objective mind, and it's been missed or ignored so many times brings me back around to that same conclusion: many disciples of evolution are pretty darn closed-minded. :-)

Anonymous said...

Yes, none of us were around when the earth formed, when life began and developed into us. For obvious reasons (it's hard to be around to observe one's own creation). Your point seems to be that we therefore can never be sure what happened then. True, we can only make guesses based on the evidence we've uncovered. Evolution is a convincing guess that explains a lot of facts and has no real rival in parsimony or fact. Religion is not a guess - it is an assumption. And I'd rather a guess based on an evidence to something that was just invented out of thin air without any reference to evidence.

Bob Ellis said...

Anonymous 5:12, you've just described evolution: an assumption. It's an assumption based on a large number of assumptions.

Jon B said...

Hey Bob, you say Evolution is untestable?

Evolution claims that we share common ancestry with certain great apes, yet these great apes all have one extra pair of chromosomes. How could this be possible, since losing an entire chromosome is a uniformly fatal mutation in ANY species? Well, if you want to believe in evolution, then you are FORCED to PREDICT that one of our chromosomes MUST be the fusion product of two of these great ape chromosomes (thereby allowing for the "loss" of a chromosome without actually losing any genetic information). Guess what happens when you TEST that hypothesis!! I think it's chromosome #2, but it doesn't really matter: one of our chromosomes turns out to be the exact fusion product of two great ape chromosomes. If that simple TEST of evolutionary theory, ONE SIMPLE TEST, had come up false, evolution would have been PROVEN wrong.

This is just a single example of the many TESTABLE PREDICTIONS OF EVOLUTION.

This is why scientists get so defensive about this topic!! You argue so strongly, making claims like 'evolutions is not testable', meanwhile it has been tested OVER AND OVER AND OVER again. BOB, YOU DON'T KNOW THE WHOLE STORY. And why should you? I don't know all the evidence for/against global warming or string theory, SO I LEAVE THE DISCUSSION TO THOSE WHO DO.

You state that evolution is not testable. It is, it has been, and the information is available to all. This is like telling a mathematician that 2+2 does NOT equal 4 and then wondering why he's getting so irritated with you.

If you are in ANY WAY as open-minded about this issue as you claim to be, you WILL go and research the example I gave above, read the evidence for yourself, and then address it in your reply.

Sincerely,
Jon

Bob Ellis said...

Jon B, you still don't understand the difference between a guess that fits and a fact.

If I saw a woman cross the street, and a coffee shop was directly across the street, I might guess that she was going to that coffee shop. Maybe she is, maybe she isn't, but it's a guess either way.

And if I guessed she'd walk into the coffee shop, is that proof that the coffee shop is where she intended to go? Maybe she was intending to walk on to work, but caught sight of the coffee shop after she crossed the street and decided to have some java.

I might guess that because a brand new stapler was on my desk when I came to work that my boss wanted me to have a new stapler. But a co-worker might show up and tell me he/she had been walking to his/her desk with the new stapler from the supply room, got distracted by a coworker when walking by my desk, sat the stapler down and forgot about it.

A guess that "seems" to fit doesn't constitute a correct guess.

And those creationist guesses, they fit the evidence just as well as the evolutionary ones--in a number of cases, much better.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Ellis,
With all due respect sir, unless you have the credentials to properly discredit a "theory" like evolution, please restrict your opinions to relevant issues like how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. Obviously you don't care in the least that all the "evolutionist's" comments were taken both out of context and under false premises.
As a life long atheist and one who understands much more about how the real world works because my world view is not clouded by the fanciful tales of a completely contrived belief in assorted mythical, supernatural gods and spirits invented by a population of stone age goat herders, don't bore us with your condescending, elitist Christian views on a subject you have no working knowledge of.
You need to go back to reading the Bible, and endeavor to reinforce your delusional beliefs.

Richard said...

That's an entirely disengeuous analogy you've made there Bob. Evidence of evolution being compared to seeing a woman crossing the road? I think that, more than anything, illustrates how badly you understand just what evolution actually is.

The difference between you and I is that if you walked into work and saw a stapler on your desk, you'd immediately assume that God put it there and your purpose in life was to follow the Holy Staple and strike down the paperclip infidels.

I would ask around until I found out where it came from.

GBJ said...

Bob, you just nailed it. Both sides offer guesses. The difference is that science tries to validate its guesses.

You also can't seperate interpretation from any human endeavour. A guess that seems to fit is actually the best we can hope for. A "fact" that is beyond doubt has no place in science, and it is here that I believe you misunderstand the scientific process. Science when properly practiced is aware, as much as is humanly possible, of the limitations of that approach. It is also the only human endeavour that I am aware of that actively works to address those limitions.

The irony is that you are guilty of the very thing you accuse others on this forum of. Try opening your mind to the possabilities.

Evolution has not been tested so much as that all roads from various scientific fields all point in the same direction.

Personally I find the debate amusing. Religion has nothing to do with science. That I believe evolution is a real process in no way invalidates my faith. Put another way, evolution is not mutually exclusive with a belief in God. Put yet another way, those who fear evolution are weak in their faith.

If you are not a troll, I suspect that our positions are not all that different. Where I disagree is your position that evolution not well supported and your position that we must answer all questions such as the origin of the Universe before a scientific theory is valid. That is not science either. Science encourages us to bite off small pieces and work on them, the big picture emerges gradually.

Currently there are a couple of interesting theories on the origin of the universe but our understanding is currently very incomplete here. It may always be so, but this should not stand in the way of our attempts to understand the universe.

I leave you with a quote from Carl Sagan that I am reasonbly sure will strike a chord with you:

In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion.
-- Carl Sagan, 1987 CSICOP keynote address

Anonymous said...

"Has anyone else noticed how closed-minded these evolution-believing so-called "seekers of truth" are?

You can't disagree with them without being vehemently branded as living in ancient times, being a flat-earther, etc.

I think they've proven the overall point of Stein's movie (that there is NO intellectual freedom or rational debate when it comes to "evolution). They're some of the most closed-minded intellectual bigots you'll ever come across--all the while, desperately hanging onto a theory which HAS NO PROOF."

No Bob,
There is freedom for rational debate. That is the point you seem to miss. To be shown that there is provable, verifiable evidence for a theory and then to refute it with nothing more than faith is not "rational" debate. It is just debate based on faith, nothing more. Where is the quantifiable, proven point of creationism? And it has been mentioned before but creationism generally deals with the creation. We are talking evolution here right? The two are in fact distinct issues.
I think your posts show quite clearly who is closed-minded.

Vincent Truman said...

This is a staggeringly misinformed and poorly written article, bettered only by the holy among your readers, who have taken this film as an opportunity to play victim and act in a manner that sounds like it is borne of many things, peace and love not among them.

Nevertheless, I think it is imperative to get religious/ID philosophies into any school. But, until there ID provides testable theories, not in science class.

Anonymous said...

The author of his blog does not respond to the allegations made by the blogs skeptical of Stein's propaganda piece, instead s/he attacks those with an opposing opinion with the usual name calling pettifogging. Don't let others do you thinking for you. Examine all sides of an issue and make up your own mind. Isn't that the rhetoric of the anti-evolutionists?

Jon B said...

Bob, that analogy made absolutely no sense at all. Well done.

Evolution made a prediction. It was tested. It turned out to be true. More important than the fact that it was true is the fact that EVOLUTION IS TESTABLE. According to you, on the other hand, it is not. In other words, you say things that are blatantly false.

You speak with an attitude that implies reasonable knowledge of the topic at hand, yet you have proven this not to be the case.

In keeping with some of the comments above, until you are qualified to read and have read the hundreds of papers that support evolution, you have absolutely no right to claim anything about it. Especially that it has no proof. Especially that it is not testable.

Jon

 
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