Simple Question to Creationists
Donating = Loving
Bringing you atheist articles and building active godless communities takes hundreds of hours and resources each month. If you find any joy or stimulation at Atheist Republic, please consider becoming a Supporting Member with a recurring monthly donation of your choosing, between a cup of tea and a good dinner.
Log in or create an account to join the discussions on the Atheist Republic forums.
I appreciate how you distingush religion (and it's pre-determinism), from sciences open-ended nature, by pointing out how the religious think they already have all the answers.
Very comprehensivly written, and a manageable length, too.
Thanks. You flatter me, sir. ;D
1a) You miss the point of why I quoted Dr. Richard Lewontin.
You made a claim that creationists start with a position and then try to fit the evidence to that position.
I responded by giving you a quote from a genius evolutionist who does the exact same thing you accused creationists of doing.
Both sides do it. We both start out with presuppositions (foundational beliefs) about the world and then work from there. I noticed how you said nothing about the clear and obvious bias Lewontin has. You completely side-skirted the quote.
1b) "Creationism has a book with all the answers already written down."
My good sir, your praise for the Bible is overwhelming! But actually, the Bible has very few answers, but many guidelines.
It doesn't tell us how plants can do photosynthesis, but it does tell us that God made plants for food and that we need to take care of this world.
There is so much room for the Creationist because the Bible doesn't delve deeply in the realm of science! It just gives a couple details of what happened in the beginning, and everything else is open-ended... hence all the wonderful science that Creationists have done.
2) I wouldn't expect atheists to understand hermeneutics (the guidelines for interpreting the Bible), so I'll break it down for you. There are three basic positions when it comes to interpreting the Bible:
1) The symbolic method: The Bible is symbolic and full of general truths, and that is how it should be read. These are the liberal Christians.
2) The grammatical-historical method: how you should interpret the Bible depends on the genre and how the original audience would've understood it. I adhere to this position.
3) The literalist position: everything the Bible says should be taken literally. These are the uber-conservatives.
I'm not word-twisting, I'm simply reading things how the audience would've. When the Bible says (in Psalms, which is POETRY) that the world rests on pillars, I know not to take this literally because the genre is poetry and the audience would've understood it as such.
When Jesus tells His audience (in the Gospels) that Christians are to be the salt of the world, I know he is being figurative because that's how his audience would've understood it. Jesus wouldn't want Christians to jump into some meat hoping to season it.
So no, I'm not word-twisting, I'm trying to understand context. "Sunset" isn't a problem for you, so it's not a problem for a Biblical author, despite the fact both of you would be scientifically wrong if you used that word.
3) You do know that many ancient civilizations, before modern science, believed the earth was spherical? Way before science? Creationists haven't accepted a spherical earth because of the "overwhelming" science because many nations believed in a spherical earth before science was even practiced.
1a) - "You miss the point of why I quoted Dr. Richard Lewontin."
No, I didn't.
You found a personal opinion from a scientist that reflects what you want all of science to be like, so you intentionally try to apply that opinion on the entire concept of science. It's ridiculous and simply bad and transparent argumentation
Of course people have personal opinions. Of course scientist often have an idea of what result or observation they want to achieve. Sometimes it works out and prove a hypothesis, other times they disprove their own hypothesis and quite often something completely unexpected is discovered instead of the anticipated result.
Science operates by observation and experimentation, and it's dependent on peer review and repeatability. Findings are published and scrutinized. But I don't have to explain this to you, do I?
I think you're just pretending not to "get it".
- "You made a claim that creationists start with a position and then try to fit the evidence to that position.", "Both sides do it."
Well, at least you are half right. :D
1b) - "your praise for the Bible is overwhelming!"
Yeah right. What I think of the bible is not suitable to write here.
- "the Bible has very few answers, but many guidelines."
The end result, the desired conclusion is still written in your magical book. If the findings of creationist "science" doesn't fit in with the scriptures, it can't be accepted. Truth and reality does not have a say in that.
- "the Bible doesn't delve deeply in the realm of science! It just gives a couple details of what happened in the beginning, and everything else is open-ended"
The details are not specific because back then they had no knowledge of the details. The end result is not open-ended, since it's still locked within the frames of the magical book. What creationists are doing is making up everything about how that end result came to be.
- "hence all the wonderful science that Creationists have done."
LoL... can't type... LoL, haha.
You have to be a troll, just putting us on? "Wonderful science", sure, if you love abstract art perhaps.
2) "I'm not word-twisting, I'm simply reading things how the audience would've."
Not word twisting huh?
- "Have you ever said "sunrise" or "sunset"? If so, you are no better. The sun doesn't rise or set"
- "Have you ever called a moon a "half-moon" or a "quarter-moon"? If so, that's incorrect! The moon is never half, or a quarter, of itself. It's always a full moon whether or not you can see all of it."
- "If you are going to be ticky-tacky like that, hopefully you have never said the above things (or ANYTHING similar), because that would be hypocritical."
This is sandbox arguments. Very disappointing :(
Here it seems you actually try to get up out of the sandbox:
- "When Jesus tells His audience (in the Gospels) that Christians are to be the salt of the world, I know he is being figurative because that's how his audience would've understood it. Jesus wouldn't want Christians to jump into some meat hoping to season it."
But no, you're still down there.
Everyone understands that Jesus is speaking figuratively. You're the only one pretending that it's so hard to get, in an attempt to blow smoke and give you more elbow room to avoid getting cornered in your interpretations.
This low level of cheap debating tricks is, frankly, embarrassing and a bit insulting.
3) - "You do know that many ancient civilizations, before modern science, believed the earth was spherical?"
Sure. But what does that have with creationists accepting that the earth is round?
Christians didn't think that the Earth was round. The bible depicts the Earth as flat. The Church persecuted anyone who claimed otherwise.
But you're such a bitter enemy of science, you cant even admit that science has proven the creationists and the church wrong, over and over again. And the apologetics keep moving the goal post, further and further.
As I usually do, when the debate is going nowhere I stop and agree to disagree :) I've loved our conversation!
The only thing (this will be my last response on this particular comment trail, so you can have the last word) I have a problem with is one part of your comment that shows some serious naiveté on your part:
""hence all the wonderful science that Creationists have done."
LoL... can't type... LoL, haha.
You have to be a troll, just putting us on? "Wonderful science", sure, if you love abstract art perhaps.""
This shows you are quite ignorant (and I use the words "ignorant" and "ignorance" very sparingly in debates because it is quiet inflammatory... I just couldn't find a better word here) of the history of science. I will again post a list of Creationist scientists and you tell me if their work was/is just "abstract art":
"Roger Bacon, Blaise Pascal, Robert Boyle, Sir Isaac Newton, Michael Faraday, James Clerk Maxwell, Gregor Mendel, Raymond Damadian", etc.
Now, because you are a man of high intellect, I will trust that you can do research on these people. What did they accomplish? What did they invent? What did they discover?
"Abstract art" my ***. These Creationists did indeed do "wonderful science", just like I said they did... all while holding to a literal six-day creation position.
Again, I've loved talking to you! I just find it disconcerting how the majority (in this case, Evolutionists) can be this naive when it comes to history. I guess whoever is in power at the time truly can rewrite the history books :/
- "This shows you are quite ignorant...", "...of the history of science"
You're quite right that I am ignorant, and a bit slow in the head as well :)
(Dear reader: If you agree to this post, you also agree that I'm ignorant and slow in the head :P )
I keep forgetting that you use the term "creationism" as a much broader term then people usually do, so I keep making the mistake to debate you as the 'Ken Ham wannabes' of the world.
In my defense, the term "creation science" means something quite different than what you are implying.
Wikipedia: "Creation science or scientific creationism is a branch of creationism that attempts to provide scientific support for the Genesis creation narrative in the Book of Genesis and disprove or reinterpret the scientific facts, theories and scientific paradigms about the history of the Earth, cosmology and biological evolution."
The term "creationist scientists" does not refer to the scientist you mention.
They where in large part believing Christians, which is something all together different than a "creationist scientist".
To be fair, you write: "science that Creationists have done" not "creationist scientists".
Which is not necessarily the same thing. I realize you wish to end the debate, but I ask this as an open question anyway:
Did any of these men actually identify as "Creationists"?
Even if they did... these men weren't trying to prove the biblical creation or trying to disprove the evidence that does not support the biblical creation. And most importantly: They did not have the wealth of evidence that is available today, looked straight at it and try to deny or distort it.
Using the words "creationist" and "scientist" connected to each other, implies the intentional gross negligence of logic and reason that is seen today in those who call themselves Creationist scientists.
Your assumptions in the rest of you post is aimed at the incorrect view you have of me and others like me.
EDIT: Just to clarify, my contempt of "Wonderful science" that Creationists have done, is aimed at those who actually call themselves "creationist scientists".
I enjoy the conversations as well (apart from some of the unbecoming debating techniques).
"The fact of the matter is that an author is allowed to describe things from his or her perspective at the moment, which is what the Bible authors do. You allow yourself to speak from your own perspective (sunrise/sunset), and yet you don't allow Bible authors to do the same." - Ilovequestions
The Bible's support goes way, way beyond a casual, personal description of things in its support of a flat earth! The sky is something hard, something structural, and one verse depicts God as hammering it out (as though it were metal). The stars are bit players added after the sun and moon, and in other verses they are viewed as falling to the earth below! The sky is compared to a tent over a flat earth, not a cocoon surrounding a spherical earth. The heavenly dome rests on pillars attached (perhaps) to mountainous islands just beyond the pancake earth. Earth itself is on pillars according to many verses, and when it is shaken (God gets angry!) BOTH heaven and earth shake!
Genesis 1 is a picture-perfect description of the ancient, Babylonian cosmos. The view (in its various forms) was held throughout the ancient Middle East. Indeed, scholars know that Genesis was written/assembled at about the time the Jewish elite was held in Babylon.
There is so much flat-earth material in the Bible that we could even do a thread on it. Or you could just read "The Biblical Cosmos versus Modern Cosmology" by David Presutta who thoroughly covers all the relevant verses. When properly interpreted, there is not a hint of a spherical earth or a modern cosmos in the Bible. (Why wouldn't God have later generations in mind when he wrote the Bible? Couldn't he have slipped in a couple of verses that would let us moderns know that something more than ancient ignorance was involved? There would have been no need for ancient readers to make sense of every verse!) The numerous verses in the Bible, taken as a whole, clearly spell "flat earth."
The purpose of science is to SUCCESSFULLY predict the state of a system at time 2, given its state at time 1. That is it, nothing else. And it matters not which method is used. Materialism + mathematical modelling is the current reigning champion at this, with nothing else even being worth mentioning. But the instant you come up with a better method, the scientists will be falling all over themselves to use it. So we breathlessly await your suggestions.
Hello Aber, To answer the question of how the bible explains the different races of man, just read the story of the tower of bable. Apparently ilovequestions doesn't know his own belief. Have you notice lately that religious people are trying to use science to prove their god? We will never use their god to try and prove our science(yes, it's ours). Why. Because they know deep down inside that science is real and god is not. It's like they feel if they can just shove god up science's butt then maybe he will become part of what is true and real. All I see is god's legs sticking out of science's ass!
The thinking creationists actually claim science to be of their god's design and gift to man. This settles the argument regarding science versus creationism. They are actually one.
By example, the various tribes of people (Jews) who eventually came together for the sake of merging and propagating their extended and splintered cultural elements needed to iron out a few minor details. First, the various tribes believed in very different gods. When the time came to settle their differences it was decided amongst the elders (rabbinical clergy) the most convenient (believable) choice of action would be to publicly explain that all the tribes were actually worshiping the same god, unwittingly, and the ignorant among them (most of them) believed it. Hence the Teflon slide from poly-theism to mono-theism within the larger Jewish culture of the time. If the people bought into that, they'd believe anything.
The idea being that anything and everything can be announced to be the work of their god, whenever necessary to evade the challenge of logical debate and analysis, thereby negating the need to put up a defense.
i was thinking the same things and evolution can be observed and there is tons of proof and god is nothing
evolutin can be observed and there is tons of proof and god is just an imaginari friend that people created because they were afraid of death
It appears to me that Professor amber is no more between us.....unless he/she/it/them is among us with a different name.....that would be really naughty =D
OWWwww the return of the killer tomatoes...........=D
the second coming...... same comments differnet name...hmMMMmmm
@ ilovequestions: I am sorry but your hypothesis that the genes of Adam and Eve were perfect to start with holds no water. What does that even mean ?
a Gene is akin to a code. but that gene is only significant if it codes for a particular protein.
Allow me to explain. The DNA is like a long code like random alphabets typed over and over again but the part of this long code is only useful whenever it forms a word (sorry its the best example could think of). The cell identifies a start sequence and end sequence and so the coding sequence which is then transcribed (science talk which means forms a corresponding RNA) to RNA which then helps in protein synthesis.
However the coding part of the DNA is about 5% the rest is non coding. which means that it just sits there doing nothing.
lastly the ends of the DNA have telomers (repetitive sequences) which in each replication grow smaller which is what is responsible for cell ageing.
Now when you say Adam & Eve had perfect Genes what does it mean?
1. Did they not have this 95% non coding portion?
2. Did their telomers not shorten?
3. something else entirely.
I am sorry but to just say their genes were perfect is meaningless. you have to define what perfect genes are. The Human genome project has mapped out the genetic structure but they haven't been able to define perfect genetics.
Secondly evolution (this is including the microscopic one that christians go on about) works in the opposite direction as what you are suggesting. you would have us believe that over time our genetic structure will deteriorate until it will just fall apart (progression perfect --> bad --->worse) whereas any evolutionary biologist will tell you it works the other way around. Natural selection choses the fittest genes to propagate. so over time our genetics will improve.
mutations are changes in the genetic structure that can either be beneficial or detrimental or both when it takes place in a gene that codes for a protein. haemolytic disorders and sickle cell anaemia are examples of just that.
Finally to use the scientific process on your argument would be that Adam and Eve (by the way were genetically identical creatures as they were got from the same living creature, corollary of which could be they were not humans or at the very least hermaphrodites and somewhere down the line gave birth to modern humans.) were created with a particular genetic code (cannot imply perfect) which most religious people could at best say did not have any overt genetic or familial associated diseases (maybe unexpressed ones) and their genes mutated (mutation by the way does not lead to the deformities seen in consanguinity. there is not correlation. Mutation is another issue and consanguinity is another. They may coexist but are not a causality) all the while whilst the engaged in incestous activity or consanguineous marriages. And after a random sequences of generations god suddenly decides to arrest what by now would seem commonplace i.e.; marrying within the family for generations.
I shall mention here that in this scenario we can identify each family lineage as sharing a single gene pool as people would rather marry within the family than without. yet each family tree would be connected and so variation would still be minimal (i.e. only due to the mutations that occurred on the coding sections). Thus by sheer random chance your GOD would order the people to stop incest and/or consanguinity as there is no way to know what random mutations have taken place nor what inheritable characteristics would be passed down whether they were to now marry outside their families or not. which implies 2 things
1. if they married in the family long enough they could have become a different species due to isolation (a tenet of evolution)
2. if they had inheritable characteristics that were occult, it would manifest itself as a heterozygosity at this point.
which would mean the order from your God would be futile at this point.
I apologise for all the scientific jargon as I had no other way of proving to you the fallacy of your argument.
So to answer your first question about having children with family members. When God created the Earth humans were perfect. There were no imperfections or flaws: however, after sin entered the world humans became imperfect. Due to their imperfections if humans mated with their family members their children would have major health problems. Therefore, it is nowadays horrible to have children with a family member because of the consequences that it may have on the child.
2nd Question: There is no separate races. If you research it we are all the same color: brown. There is a pigment in our skin called melanin, melanin gives the us the color in our skin. Some people have less melanin: white people, and some of us have more melanin: black people. So in reality all people are the same color and race. If you want to know about why we have different languages and practices here is your answer. After the Great Flood man was told by God to spread out and fill the Earth. However, they did not listen, they congregated in one place and built a huge tower called the tower of Babel. God was angered by this so in order to make people spread out he switched their languages. Some people spoke one language and another person a different language. After that, the people that spoke the same language came together and spread out into different cultures.
Your explanations don't even stand up to the bible itself (which we don't put any stock in anyway).
For example: the bible clearly states that people spoke different languages before the tower of Babel. So even the fiction is inconstant, making suspension of disbelief difficult/impossible for most of us. Simply put: the bible is not even good fiction!
What a load of horseshit. Fables, folklore, unsubstantiated stories, tall tales and out right lies. Tower of babel, the great flood, all utter BS! There have been numerous "great floods." There have been several different species of humans all but one have gone extinct.
Do you have ANY prove whatsoever of a god telling people to do anything, or is it just hearsay and allegory, ....yet again?
Either prove it or just shut the fuck up. None of you theist prove anything, yet you demand proof from science. When science successfully proves something you deny that empirical prove.
Oh look, fair game. Finally. Let me go collect my resources. I'm sure the other will be along in a moment. Note that by walking onto this site you have forfeited the personal liberty to not be offended for the time you are on this site. Any and all resources can and will be used against you in the courts of reason, logic, and credibility. Also, the people hear at AR are in no way responsible for any offence or vindication you may feel. If you agree to these terms, feel free to continue.
Also, the Bible is not counted as evidence here. It is not considered superior to anything and therefore any attempt to say it trumps recorded history will be treated as babbling nonsense. If you wish to have any hope here, you will have to have more to back you up than the Bible. If you do not, consider your defeat a forgone conclusion.
One more important thing. We, the people of AR, with our many different nationality's, ages, and experience levels, will not hold back. I hope you came prepared.
The 3 (3 in 1 trinity?) should be a mandatory introduction for all AR debate forum threads! Couldn't have said it better myself. In fact, couldn't have.
Abeer, Here's another serving on the spicy side! Mr. Ham, one of the leading creationists, estimated that Noah's ark could hold 7000 kinds of animals. Each one would presumably represent a species that would later undergo "microevolution" to fill in the species today. Well, we have at least 16 million species. Bill Nye (author of "Undeniable") calculated that 11 new species would have to evolve every DAY to reach that goal! Wow! Mr. Ham seems to be trying very hard to out-evolve the evolutionists! And this evolution of species, at a rate that would floor the hardiest evolutionist, had to come from animals with almost no genetic diversity! (See my post to Ilovequestions for the human counterpart.)
The whole idea of 8 people caring for 14000 animals (not counting all those that came aboard 7 at a time) on a rocking, dank, dark, disease-ridden, fungus-plagued, rat-infested, methane and ammonia-saturated ark (there being no effective ventilation), with no exercise room for the larger animals and no fresh food after the first month, with no effective waste disposal, all of this and much more, when a modern zoo (with vastly more area and electrical power for lighting and other jobs, with vastly more manpower and expertise, with plenty of fresh air to suppress fungus and disease, with expert medical care, with effective waste disposal, with stable ground and enclosures that include those specialized amenities so vital to the survival of many species, and a ready supply of fresh food) can't handle as many animals as Noah is proof of a basic disconnect with reality!! Such people are off in la-la land and no meaningful debate is even possible. (A meaningful debate can only take place if both sides accept the same, basic concept of reality to buttress their claims.)
There is a simple answer to how the Noah's ark was possible. Magic. For all gods (and especially biblical god) are omnipotent and know all magic tricks.
There is of course a question why didn't god make all the bad people disappear or why didn't he change their attitude (the way he did with Pharaoh before the exodus). If I were an omnipotent god I would use magic to change people. Well I would just forgive Adam and Eve in the first place and throw the Satan/snake out of there (or would not create him in the first place knowing that he will rebel).
But that's how logic would work, for god works in mysterious and f*king idiotic way - which means if there are two ways of solving the problem - the logical one and illogical one, god will always choose the third (he knows no limits) - illogical and the dumbest one.
Michal, you have already exceeded the logic behind religious apologetics! If they ever stopped to realize what is sensible and likely--rather than what is logically possible but silly and unlikely--the whole religious business would fall apart. How silly to think that a just and good God would arrange things so that people (most) would roast forever in hell, the result of "infinite" crimes God himself invented! How silly of an omniscient God to have to try people (in an earthly stage) in the first place! How pathetic of an omniscient God to write a Bible that perfectly resembles the musings of Bronze Age thinkers, a book that can't even clearly present the requirements for salvation! A college major in English would put such ramblings to shame!
And, of course, your point Michal. God would have simply forgiven Adam and Eve even as any decent father would have forgiven his children. The whole idea that this misstep would, in God's universe, create some magical sin that would be inherited by every baby born afterwards sounds way too much like a church gimmick to control the masses with guilt. It might have begun as a Bronze Age explanation of the source of harm and hardship in a supposedly perfect universe, but it didn't take the Church long to later rework it and make good use of it! And, what about this business of God playing hide and seek? Apologists have their answers but it's always the case, as you observed, of opting for something stupid rather than letting common sense rule.
For those out there who insist on saying that God had the magical power to do anything, and therefore your doctrine is defensible, let me give three responses.
1) You must abandon any pretense of making a scientific argument. Scientific reasoning is like an anchor chain. If you remove one link the anchor is lost! You can't mix science and religious magic. Stick with one or the other or lose all credibility.
2) You haven't proven that your magical God exists. Forget about all those usual, easy "proofs" that you learned over the years! Many a learned theologian, knowing vastly more than you do, has admitted that there is no proof for God. Do you think that even a liberal theologian would say that if an easy proof was just sitting there on the shelf? No proof, no argument!
3) Even if God did exist, how would you know that he wrote the Bible? Logic dictates that you would have to first examine that book. It would be ludicrous to declare that God wrote a certain book that you have never even examined! I suppose God could whisper it into your ear, but how would you know that it was God speaking? How would you know that your brain wasn't malfunctioning?
In any case, an objective, honest examination of the Bible (to decide whether God might have written it) cannot begin with the assumption that God wrote it! Therefore, when we see something silly in the Bible, an attempt to explain it away at all costs is an error of reasoning since it assumes that God actually wrote the Bible and that any possible defense (however silly) makes more sense than the natural, probable explanations that leave God out of the picture. The evidence must be weighed, pro and con, and the best conclusion drawn.
To sum up: The usual apologetics, where any loophole will do, is bankrupt since it effectively assumes a priori that God is the author of the Bible--the very point being debated! Once you drop that a prior assumption then any defense WILL NOT DO unless it is objectively better than the alternatives.
Necromancy at work.
Wait I think they claimed God made only 2 peoples this 2 gave birth to Cain and Able after Cain slayed Able its left with 3
I can't understand why God can't tell Cain there is no one out there to slay you but he have to put a mark on him. (Genesis 4:15 And the LORD said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the LORD set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him.)
The big question is that where from this person to kill Cain and from where will God get seven extra heads to atone for Cain's death?
The Bible doesn't really say that Adam & Eve, Cain & Abel were the only people. Remember, the Garden of Eden was between Assyria, Persia, Arabia, and Ethiopia. And Cain and his wife built a town in the land of Nod. Who builds a town for just two people?
Besides, Abel was the first priest.