If you look at the universe and study the universe, what you find is that there is no evidence that we need anything other than the laws of physics and the other laws of science to explain everything we see. There's absolutely no evidence that we need any supernatural hand of god. -- Lawrence Krauss, World-Renowned Physicist
There is probably no other notion in any field of science that has been as extensively tested and as thoroughly corroborated as the evolutionary origin of living organisms. -- Encyclopedia Britannica
FAITH. No one word personifies the absolute worst and most wicked properties of religion better than that. Faith is mind-rot. It’s the poison that destroys critical thinking, undermines evidence, and leads people into lives dedicated to absurdity. It’s a parasite regarded as a virtue. -- PZ Myers
Religion is the antithesis of science, an anesthetic for the mind that disables critical thought and encourages the acceptance of inanity as fact, and wishful thinking as evidence. -- PZ Myers

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Some comments I wrote at another blog to correct some misconceptions:

God versus Evolution

3 COMMENTS:

Human Ape said...

"Conversely, if the Biblical account is false then we are free from the moral strictures found therein and able to generate morality based on our own thoughts and wishes."

That's been working well for me. I don't believe in the Bible but for some reason I still get great pleasure from being a civilized person and from going out of my way to help other people, especially older people. And I do these things expecting no reward in a magical heaven, so my moral values are real.

Human Ape said...

I have some minor corrections for you if you don't mind.

You wrote "Then again, it is all but impossible to describe accurately what evolutionary hypothesis is since it is in a constant state of flux. Earth age fluctuates wildly, with 4.55 billion years or so being one common number, another being a few hundred million years either way from about 13.7 billion years."

13.7 billion years is the current estimate for the age of the entire universe. About 4.5 billion years is the estimate for the age of the earth. Notice that our planet is only about one third the age of the rest of the universe.

Evolution is no longer an hypothesis. It was fair to call it that in 1859. In 2011 it's a basic scientific fact.

Evolution has been defined accurately for a long time now. Why don't you use google and look it up.

Your "a constant state of flux" is an interesting choice of words. It's true that there will always be research opportunities in evolutionary biology (and that's a good thing), but the basic facts are settled, including for example the fact that we share an ancestor with chimps.

I may or may not have some more to say about your post, if I find any more misconceptions and if I have the time. Thanks for letting me write this comment here.

Human Ape said...

I don't want to annoy the heck out of you, so I'm going to at least try to make this my last post.

You talked about "belief in evolution". A biologist would never say that. Basic scientific facts like evolution are not beliefs. It's not necessary to "believe" in evolution or have faith that evolution is true, because evolution has tons of extremely powerful evidence, especially from molecular biology.

You falsely claimed that biologists say "there are so many proofs of evolution that we do not need to show any"

That's crazy because biologists love to talk about the evidence for evolution. They write entire books about it. I suggest, if you're going to be an evolution denier the rest of your life, you should at least try to understand what it is you're denying. There are countless books I could recommend, but if you only have time to read one book about evolution, I would recommend the easy to read and interesting "Why Evolution is True" by Jerry Coyne, published in 2009 so the information is current. Jerry Coyne is one of the best biologists in the world and he works at one of the best universities in the world, the University of Chicago. He describes countless different evidences for evolution. Please read it so that you can at least write knowledgeably about the subject.

Thanks again for letting me visit here. Best of luck to you sir.

Human Ape said...

"the idea that helping other people is good comes from where? What defines that as being good?"

From me. Ain't I a genuis? I figured out all by myself what's good. Guess what? It was a bit easier than what I used to do for living, which was develop and code custom made computer software for large corporations. After doing that stuff, figuring out that helping older people is a good thing to do, wasn't really all that difficult. Perhaps most five years could do it.

My point is, magic god fairies are not necessary for these things.

You also talked about your problems with evolution. I'm going to save myself some time -- I would like to ask you to simply see this post on my blog which explains some extremely powerful evidence for our evolutionary relationship with chimps. And when reading this stuff, please remember that this is only an extremely tiny fraction of the evidence for the established scientific fact that we share an ancient ape ancestor with modern chimp apes, and oh by the way humans are one of the modern ape species which means your dead Jeebus was an ape, which means Christians worship a dead ape, and ain't the religious implications interesting?

Here it is and I bet you just might learn something, especially if you check out the videos.

Human chromosome 2 and chimpanzee chromosomes 2p & 2q

Many thanks for letting me comment here.

Human Ape said...

"Human, I did go to your site, but must admit about the 3rd paragraph was offensive enough and dismissive enough of anyone who does not agree with your views that I could not justify continuing."

A poor excuse to be willfully ignorant.

Also, since when did scientific facts become a person's "view"? Facts are not opinions. Facts are not viewpoints. Facts are facts.

A huge difference between your magical creationism and evolution by natural selection is this: evolution is a bloody fact, supported by massive evidence, and apparently, like virtually all other Christians (and Muslim terrorists), you are hell-bent to know absolutely nothing about that evidence.

Meanwhile magical creationism has what? Not one shred of evidence. How could it have any evidence? It's a religious myth. It's false. Completely wrong, and every single sane biologist in the world agrees with me. I got the scientists at Harvard, MIT, the University of Chicago, and every single other top university of the world completely on my side. On your side you have nothing but Bible colleges where students go if they want to be professional preachers, the most useless members of our society.

On my blog where I don't censor myself, I speak honestly. If my honesty is a big problem for you, that's fine. It's your life, not mine, which is being totally wasted on Dark Ages insanity. Not my problem. I try to help people like you, but it's almost always for nothing. Christianity is an incurable disease. Thanks to a lifetime of brainwashing and willful ignorance, there's nothing that can be done to save you people from your wasted lives.

January 7, 2011 4:27 AM

13 comments:

  1. I got as far as "a tree becomes a fish" before my head exploded. I'll try to read on... but creationism does have the effect of frying the brain...

    ReplyDelete
  2. Your responses were very civilized. This person's attempt to learn more about evolution seems not to have been sincere. I hope they will take you up on the challenge to learn the truth rather than parrot whatever he finds on Answers in Genesis or whatever his source is.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I simply couldn’t resist — I continued where you left off over there.

    Rudee

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hello LadyAtheist and Rudee.

    LadyAtheist, I also have a very low tolerance for nonsense like fish and trees being on the same branch of the tree of life. These people apparently never learned how to think.

    Rudee, thanks for going there and writing more comments. You motivated me to write one more comment there which I also just copied and pasted to this post.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thank you for your help over there —

    there are some tiny little remarks I want to make about your style of discussion in Darth’s Blog.

    I personally do not really like to deride other people’s systems of belief so bluntly ("magic", "fairies", etc.).

    PZ Myers (I think you know his blog) will certainly disagree, but it is his style aggressively only when he discusses topics which either concern his area of expertise or are outright dumb.

    It is my experience that this does not lead still wavering believers to think about the arguments but to react rather emotionally.
    If that’s what you are after, that’s OK, but I think that most believers are still looking for some sort of sense, of meaning in life and think that they have found it.
    Somehow.
    But still need to justify their beliefs, as it does not hold up to reality in many ways.

    This chap Darth seems to be a sensible enough person who still does like to think and to discuss.

    And THAT’S where you have to pick him up.

    Also it’s my experience that one never can deliver enough proof for anything, it’s easier to dispute the claims of believers by taking their arguments and subtly giving evidence that they could have been right, but made their assumptions on false predicaments.

    I don’t know if I’ve made myself clear here, as English is not my first language.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Once again with right grammar:

    PZ Myers (I think you know his blog) will certainly disagree, but it is his style to rant aggressively only when he discusses topics which either concern his area of expertise or are outright dumb.

    Silly me.

    ReplyDelete
  7. If being ridiculously nice and respecting an invisible friend can convince this Bible thumping idiot to admit he's a cousin of chimps, you can have this blog.

    Showing respect in a world of religious brainwashing, terrorism, and attacks against science education, yeah, like that ever worked.

    Know PZ? I've been collecting quotes from him for several years. Here's a quote for you:

    Tone matters, because too many have been insufficiently fierce in their criticism of pious excuses for sloppy thinking. Tone matters because we haven’t been rude enough in the face of special claims of privilege for religious inanity. We need to flip that tone argument around 180°—the problem isn’t that our tone is so harsh, it’s that yours is so inappropriately soft towards people who lie to children, who want to gut our educational system, and who want to taint science with a bias for magic. -- PZ Myers

    ReplyDelete
  8. As if I should pretend supernatural bullshit isn't magic and gods are not fairies to accommodate a person who tells children Noah's Ark is a true story. I should suck up to the fantasies of a stupid asshole who mentally abuses children.

    You go ahead and do that please. But unlike you I have moral values and I don't suck up to the insane. Nor do I try to muzzle anyone like you just attempted with me.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I hope I know what you mean, HumanApe —

    although living in Northern Germany does not give me much opportunity for contact with actual living christian fundamentalists who do not accept evolution as valid.
    The churches here are empty and anyone who emphasizes that he or she/he is a christian is frowned upon "Well, that’s OK if you say so, but do you have to bother us with private matters?"

    Even registered members of churches (you have to register in churches here, for tax reasons) cannot be viewed as being of christian faith — many haven’t been seen inside a church for years on end, they do not pray and often open and readily admit that they do not believe in a supernatural entity of any kind.

    Maybe this is why I am rather tame and (in your opinion) too tolerant with them.
    I don’t know as I don’t really know fundies.

    Sorry about that.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Of course nothing to be sorry about. You're very lucky to live in a civilized country instead of in Idiot America. Most of our population is not just scientifically illiterate. They're insane. I'm not exaggerating. Americans are batshit crazy. Most of them believe in Satan. Can you imagine what's it's like to live in an insane asylum instead of a normal country?

    ReplyDelete
  11. No, I cannot imagine that, HA.

    Not until the age of 41 had I even heard of real existing people in my vicinity who actively denied evolution for religious reasons (it was my girlfriend at that time who took me to a wedding of "fundies"; she had been one of them some years before and told me stories of her past which were unimaginable before, at least for me).

    There is an expression for the "normal" people surrounding me here: "apatheistic".
    I really like that approach.

    It does not deny the cultural accomplishments of the churches (like music, architecture, etc.) and allows one to maintain a rather carefree attitude towards traditions as christmas, easter, etc.
    You do not have to believe in any mythical creature to loudly holler out "Si-hilent night, ho-ohly night …"

    But say, my friend — you really left the computer business to care for old people?
    I’m really impressed.

    ReplyDelete
  12. You misunderstood which was probably my fault. I left the computer business because I got wealthy from the stock market. Then I lost everything in the same stock market, but that's another story I am trying to forget. Because my computer skills became obsolete and because I'm too lazy to update my skills, I got a lower paying job which I love because it's easy and there's no stress.

    Every chance I get I help old people but I wouldn't make that my career. I now live in a retirement community. I'm still very young compared to many people here who are ancient. I have plenty of opportunities to help them with little stuff, and I enjoy doing that. I mentioned this to the Bible thumper because like many Christian extremists, he thinks all moral values came from his Bible god, who is of course a myth, but it would be put in prison for genocide if it was real. Perhaps this is why Christians are morally corrupt. They get their fake moral values from a criminally insane asshole.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Just by the way — we both do totally agree in the last three sentences.
    I’m totally appalled by the thought of the principle of submission which underlies the whole structure of religion.
    It is as though the age of enlightenment had never happened.

    Regarding your "hobby" of helping old people — when I was a student (graphic design) I lived in a rather big house with many, say 5o, 6o small appartements. It was an old building, the rent was cheap, so half of the appartements were rented by students while the other half was occupied by pensioners who lived there for most of their lives.

    It took me some time to get both parties together. After a while there were house parties on the lawn in front of the building and the young people started to care for their neighbours. Totally casually they made not only their own shopping for food but bought the food for the elderly and not seldom impaired neighbour. They even earned some money by moderate housekeeping and cleaning. And they had parties together.
    I think, you know exactly what I’m speaking of.

    Many elderly people could stay in their own flats instead of going into nursing homes.

    It is an issue of solidarity.
    Everybody involved gains more than he (or she) puts into it.

    But I don’t think only old people need help:
    seven years ago I and six other illustrators founded a "guild", a professional union for illustrators. It is the first only one of it’s kind in Germany, and not one of the founding members had any advantages by this, as we all had been in business for a long time.

    It was founded solely for the purpose to help the young people in our profession.

    I was a rather unpolitical person when I was young, but I’ve got the impression that I somehow start to tend to the left the older I get.
    Not the political left, exactly, but the "social left", if you get my meaning.

    To close the circle I’ve made:
    this is what religious people claim they practice — but in most cases this is not done for humanistic reasons but to feel better as a religious person.

    ReplyDelete