Rethinking My Views on Intelligent Design

Flying Spaghetti MonsterI’ve already applauded the Kansas Board of Education for their recent decision to teach intelligent design. Thanks to their innovative approach to teaching science, we no longer have to fear that our children will be taught heretical ideas like the earth revolving around the sun or that seafaring dinosaurs weren’t created on the fifth day.

I felt that I was alone in my beliefs until I ran into the website of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster today. Like me, they strongly believe in teaching intelligent design theory. In an open letter to the Kansas School Board, they write:

Let us remember that there are multiple theories of Intelligent Design. I and many others around the world are of the strong belief that the universe was created by a Flying Spaghetti Monster. It was He who created all that we see and all that we feel. We feel strongly that the overwhelming scientific evidence pointing towards evolutionary processes is nothing but a coincidence, put in place by Him.

They even provide scientific evidence to back their claims:

What these people don’t understand is that He built the world to make us think the earth is older than it really is. For example, a scientist may perform a carbon-dating process on an artifact. He finds that approximately 75% of the Carbon-14 has decayed by electron emission to Nitrogen-14, and infers that this artifact is approximately 10,000 years old, as the half-life of Carbon-14 appears to be 5,730 years. But what our scientist does not realize is that every time he makes a measurement, the Flying Spaghetti Monster is there changing the results with His Noodly Appendage. We have numerous texts that describe in detail how this can be possible and the reasons why He does this. He is of course invisible and can pass through normal matter with ease.

I’ve learned a lot since visiting their website. In addition to finally understanding how the world was really created, I also now know that “global warming, earthquakes, hurricanes, and other natural disasters are a direct effect of the shrinking numbers of Pirates since the 1800s.”

I’d like to take this time to thank the brave people in each and every school system which has closed the door to scientific methodology. It is truly refreshing to be free of the burden of free thinking, objective reasoning and empiricism.

Update by Stephen VanDyke: As long as we’re talking about funny creationism being taught, don’t miss out on the Genesis Creation Museum. You’ll learn that the T. Rex chased Adam and Eve out of Eden and see how children naivelly played with dinosaurs under a waterfall (and were quickly eaten, which is why they never made drawings or tools from dino bones).

More recent related article here.

posted by Stephen Gordon
  • rickrajter

    Well, let’s see what Darwin himself had to say on the issue.

    If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed, which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down.

    “To suppose that the eye, with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light…could have been formed by natural selection seems, I freely confess, absurd in the
    highest possible degree…The belief that an organ as perfect as the eye
    could have formed by natural selection is more than enough to stagger
    anyone.”

    Gee. Seems like evolution might be junk science as well.

    I agree, that intelligent design shouldn’t be taught as a science, but rather in the philosophy department. But evolution (essentially anti-creationism) should also be there as well. After all, religion is usually defined as “faith in things unseen”. Those that like to believe we evolved from dirt have tried and failed to create us from dirt in the lab.

    While I think the spaghetti monster does a great job poking fun of the holes of intelligent design as “science”, it’s hard to take evolution that seriously as well.

  • Michelle Shinghal

    You know how some kids laugh milk out of their noses? Well, I just lost wine. And only Jesus can change the water from my tap into more wine. Because I cannot replenish my source without going to the store- and risking a DWI- I hold you personally responsible. Trust me, my driving skills are not impaired but my body does not know that in an urinalalysis. Please send $3.49- the approximate value of the loss or I will be forced to address the matter in court. If the court disagrees, I will take it straight to our Intelligent Designer/ Ultimate Judge and you will forever burn for your transgression. Wasting wine over something as funny as science v. religion.

  • Howard Barnett

    ID would be bad news for Christianity which puts forth the idea of a perfect God with perfect love. Even if a “designer” were proven, there is not the slightest bit of evidence that he/she/it loves us. And we have to remember that this 99.9 percent of this designer’s creations are now extinct. And then there’s cancer. What kind of loving designer would create this affliction which affects his creations of all ages, even babies?

    Christianity could be shaken to the core if we start taking a hard look at this “designer” and his work.

  • Michelle Shinghal

    I have something HUGE to say on this God thing, but I must first ask another person’s permission to share. I was brought up Christian, but walked away from God and all things spiritual based on 3 things. With her permission, I will continue. Without, I will hold my present position without regard for a God that only cares about your stated allegiance and not your deeds.

  • Stephen Gordon

    Rick,

    I’m not at all opposed to teaching religion in a philosophical or historical context. I can’t find a copy of it, but years ago I wrote an article condemning some school system for removing references to religion from history classes. How can one teach history without covering religion?

    Also, I strongly believe that people have the absolute right to believe anything they wish and to worship in the manner of their own choosing — as long as they harm no one else in the process.

    My point is that it is absurd to teach religion-based theories of creation in a scientific context.

  • Stephen Gordon

    Michelle,

    I’d never wish to be the cause of someone abusing alcohol. Please send me your mailing address, and I’ll reimburse you promptly.

    With respect to taking it to the Intelligent Designer (sounds like an HGTV program), I believe that the Flying Spaghetti Monster diety has already forgiven me.

  • rickrajter

    Gordon,

    I know man. Just piping in with my opinion! Religion should be taught in history/philosophy, because it has roots in both. Science should be taught in science.

    My main thrust was that while I agree that the ID argument can be quite flawed, evolution isn’t exactly a proveable alternative. Take both of them out of science class, and this endless debate will finally end.

  • Stephen Gordon

    Rick,

    If we don’t teach evolution or ID, how would you suggest that we study or teach the origin of species and a host of related subjects?

  • rickrajter

    Gordon,

    Take both of them out of science class, and add them to history/philosophy where they both belong. Sound reasonable?

    The problem with keeping it in science is that none of them can survive the scientific method. Oh sure, you can make the case for certain trends (like canadians being more adept at surviving in the cold than Jamaicans), but full fledged evolution of one species to another is a bit harder to prove.

  • Stephen Gordon

    Rick,

    Do we discuss carbon dating in archeology or paleontology classes?

  • rickrajter

    Gordon,

    Go for it. One can prove, in a lab, that C14 goes to C12 at a given rate, giving it an accurate ability to gauge relative age as long as certain conditions are met.

    Mainly that, 1. There’s been no substantial addition or removal of C14 in our atmosphere over the time period in question. 2. The the sample itself was kept isolated from anything else that might affect or change it’s level of C14.

    As for where carbon dating belongs, it’s testable, so by all means keep it in the sciences. Just be aware that every technology has caveats.

  • http://hammeroftruth.com/about Jake Porter

    If people have the audacity to believe someone who tells them man developed from apes or fish jumped up on land and can now walk then believe it.

    Education is something that belongs at the state and local level and it should teach evolution but should also teach other theories as well.

    Evolution is not being taught as a theory it is being taught as a fact. Creationism is not being taught in many public schools at all. Where did the dirt that formed the world come from. I can’t answer where God came from but your theory is no more likely than mine.

    Those on this blog who attack the bible as fiction need to remember the acuracy of bible prophecy. I wish I could find one of my books to prove this but if I remember correct the Bible predicted 500 some years before that a man named Cyrus would be the one to free the Jews and it happened. If you still want more evidence I will share it with you I have a list of proven prophecy that has been fulifilled.

    Stephen,

    People in Egypt once thought it was scientifically proven that drinking their own urine and eating their own shit was good for them but it turns out they were wrong. People have used science and been wrong before.

    Evolution is not science.

  • Michelle Shinghal

    I absolutely agree with Rick about teaching ID in religion/ philosophy classes. I think that everyone should desire to take some kind of introductory class to become acquainted with different religious teachings, but it should be an opt in/ out program. We have to be honest here and realize that not all religions have the same Intelligent Designer. If we require ID be taught, in any class, we will next have to choose the designer. We get pretty close to establishing religion there.

  • Julian

    Rick Rajter

    I have no problem with believing in evolution, the scientific method, and believing in a higher power I call God. I am not one that has to reject a belief in God if I believe in evolution and vice versa.

    I do believe, as you do, that a belief in anything based on faith that somehow eludes the scientific method deserves to be taught in philosophy, not in science.

    I also cannot see removing anything religious from the history books as this is a part of our human fabric throughout history. One cannot possibly understand history of people and what influenced the course of history without injecting religion into the teachings.

  • rickrajter

    Julian

    Agreed. I think taking taking the study of religion out of the history books would be a disservice to people of all faiths as well as atheists. It’s part of the fabric of our lives, whether people want it there or not.

    I just think this whole awful debate can be ended by just putting these ideas in the fields of study they belong and leaving it at that.

  • Nicholas Sarwark

    Whoa, there seems to be an awful lot of heat without a lot of light here.

    Evolution is not being taught as a theory it is being taught as a fact. Creationism is not being taught in many public schools at all. Where did the dirt that formed the world come from. I can’t answer where God came from but your theory is no more likely than mine.

    What we have here is a misunderstanding of the word theory in the scientific context. That the Flying Spaghetti Monster affects Carbon-14 dating is a hypothesis. If there was evidence supporting that hypothesis, it would be a theory. Theories are not all equally supported by evidence, but you need some evidence before a hypothesis becomes a theory.

    Put more succinctly, there is a theory of gravity that suggests that if I drop an object on Earth, it will accelerate at 9.8 meters per second until it hits or reaches terminal velocity.

    If anyone is interested in detailed answers to all of the questions raised in this comment thread (evolution not science, not testable, Darwin’s views about eyes, etc.), the Talk.Origins Archive has it all.

    If more people would read it before they came to the debate, there’d be far less speaking past each other.

    Yours truly,
    Nick

    …prefers light to heat…

  • http://peaceonthat.blogspot.com james manning

    Hello,

    First time to the blog. I and a couple of bloggers have been debating this subject all week. Here are the links:

    Against:
    My blog: http://peaceonthat.blogspot.com

    For:
    Dell Gines: http://www.dellgines.com/
    Reva: http://revkatake.blogspot.com/

    I think you wil find all of them interesting as there are lively debates happening on each blog. I’ll have to link yours on mine.

  • Taylor

    Evolution is the change of species due to adaptation in extreme circumstances. Breeding is evolution. Where the difference lies is in Artificial Selection vs. Natural Selection. Darwin claimed that in certain situations, such as on an island, the isolation and reduced gene pool would develop normal species variants into more niche adapted variants, especially when competition is paramount due to the before said isolation. This theory at its core is backed by quite a bit of testable and replicable evidence, such as virus evolution, fungal evolution, and various plant evolutions in extreme circumstance.

    The adaptations of a variant within a species can be very effective at creating kinds of shape, subsistence and behavioral changes. An example would be the difference between a Chihuahua and a Mastiff. Where they are classified as dogs, they could not naturally and successfully interbreed due to size conflicts alone. Given more time, such as could be replicated on single celled scale in far less time, these two “dogs” could be classified as different species, and arguably that classification of difference applies to them now. I say that because where tigers and lions are classified as different species, they can interbreed successfully.

    Mutation, also, is provable as it can be seen in single celled organisms in a short time scale. Mutations, usually micro-mutations not macro-mutations, develop during the interlocking of two genetic codes (from both parents) and happen when certain genes are triggered that would not be a “normal” variance of the species, examples would be anemia, strange pituitary activity, and so on. Macro-mutations can be seen in deformations, people who have hair growth all over their bodies, and extreme size difference. Just as in dog breeding, some traits are chosen over others and further mating is encouraged to create offspring with said traits. Natural selection does the same thing by means of isolation, extinction, and competition. If people ran within a range 18 – 21 mph and then there was a monster that could run 20 mph, only a certain variance of people would remain after the others had been caught and eaten. The same thing is happening with all life at all times.

    There are certain adaptations like the eyes, as someone had mentioned before, that Darwin was in awe of. But much scientific research has occurred since then and it is shown by evidence that the eye is a trait that is non-existent in a certain range of lesser organisms but then shows up at a basic level in slightly more complex organisms, and that trait shows an incredible range of adaptation and development into even more complex organisms. This is because where a mutation occurred in a microscopic creature in the past, there is a continuation of that successful trait in the variances of that organism, and as that organism faced crisis it was selectively bred by nature in order to survive and branched into other niche adapted species. Thus, since the eye shows up only at a certain complexity level and beyond, it is something that is a very old mutation in natural history but a single mutation none the less. Of course, given the vast amount of time it has had to become even more adapted and complex, the eye is an awe-inspiring organ. However, that does not make it any less natural or explainable by science in reference to natural history.

    Evolution is an accepted scientific theory (no theory is ever proven, because science deals only in probabilities) because the use of it in further research fits adequately as more and more evidence inevitably seems to support it. We do not know that there is gravity, we think there is. We do not know that there are atoms, we think there are and can even manipulate those atoms, though they can never be seen. We do not know that evolution is occurring; we think it is and it is the most probable explanation as supported by the evidence. Intelligent design does not fall within these categories because it does not seek explanations by means developing causal theories. It instead seeks to show that such causal theories are irrelevant because there is a designer whose intentions can not be known. This is, by its nature of claiming we cannot know the designer but we can see the design, is less than science. Scientific research finds such walls unacceptable and without catering to an idea of something being beyond science, we now have vaccines, antidotes, cancer treatments, space travel, etc.

    If we accepted the concept of Intelligent Design, scientists would be crippled in their hypotheses. All things could be just as easily attributed to a designer. Then science, at its purpose, does not occur. Science does not seek multiple explanations, it seeks the one that makes the most sense and is supported by evidence. That’s just what science is. I must stress that the claims of Intelligent Design advocates are in no way scientific, neither methodologically or intentionally.

  • http://jackspratnetconnect.co.zw ANJackson

    Karyotypes resoundingly discredit evolutionary phylogenies.Meiosis/gametogenesis prohibits generation of novel inheritable karyotypes.Synergism of chromosomes in vital functions necessitates inheritance of entire and original karyotypes. So evolution is a lot of nonsense

  • Michelle Shinghal

    To ANJackson
    I looked up all the big words and still don’t quite understand your point. Can you explain- in everyday language- what you mean?

  • http://swmolibertarianparty.blogspot.com Keith Rodgers

    But it all makes perfect sense! The Earth is only a few thousand years old! Mankind never changed from day one! The dinosaur bones and other stuff was planted by the Council on Foreign Relations! Elvis lives! Zionists are trying to take over the world! Someone stole my ball of twine! Damn you, Regis Philbin, stop reading my thoughts! Al Franken is a warm, lovable guy!

    Sorry, I’ll have a drink, this’ll clear right up.

  • Taylor

    Re: Karyotypes resoundingly discredit evolutionary phylogenies.Meiosis/gametogenesis prohibits generation of novel inheritable karyotypes.Synergism of chromosomes in vital functions necessitates inheritance of entire and original karyotypes. So evolution is a lot of nonsense

    Wrong. Meiosis, as it is only in refernece to the asexual reproduction of germ cells, still shows mutations occuring, rarely but definately occuring. This is shown by altering an environment to limit survival and thus encouraging certain traits to be neccessary. Even germ cells show variance and that variance can make a difference in species survival. As well, that variance when isolated and encouraged will “evolve” much more quickly due to nature of Meiosis reproduction itself. As far as Gametogenesis, being the production of ovum and sperm via Meiosis, it is an important part of the evolutionary process encoding an individual’s DNA into every sperm or ovum. This is the reason there is even more variance in sexually reproductive organisms, thus sparking more paths for natural selection to take.

  • Taylor

    For an example of the above stated, study sperm cells. In a single organism, sperm will have variances, such as fragility or mobility differences. Without such variances, every sperm would be successful.

  • Taylor

    Evolution is not a mystical intangible force or pseudo-scientific theory. It is simply a summary of the processes of variance, survival, extinction, and selection. It is at play in a tangible and testable sense. To discredit evolution would require the discrediting of natural selection. The discrediting of natural selection would require the discrediting of artificial selection, and many agricultural methods would have to be abandoned because, even though they work, they wouldn’t apparently exist. This whole chain of argument from the side of Designism (by very semantics, Creationism) is flawed. Objectivity is being pulled from the foundation of science.

  • http://goldenliberty.blogspot.com AB

    The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster is the best church ever. Don’t make fun of it. That is the funniest site ever. Go on the right side of their page and click on the link for the responses to the letter, they’re great.

  • SV

    @Rick Rajter:
    Regarding your post mentioning Darwin and the eye, please next time add the pages that come directly after that quote in which Darwin gives a possible path regarding the evolution of the eye.

  • rickrajter

    Fair enough. I know things can be taken out context, but I feel his intro statement at least puts the magnitude of the problem at hand into perspective. Could it all happen by change and in incremental steps? And if so, does it have a constant evolutionary path in which to do so?

    btw, if you already have the book, why don’t you write it in the comments?

  • rickrajter

    For the lazy

    “Organs of extreme Perfection and Complication.   To suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest degree. When it was first said that the sun stood still and the world turned round, the common sense of mankind declared the doctrine false; but the old saying of Vox populi, vox Dei, as every philosopher knows, cannot be trusted in science. Reason tells me, that if numerous gradations from a simple and imperfect eye to one complex and perfect can be shown to exist, each grade being useful to its possessor, as is certainly the case; if further, the eye ever varies and the variations be inherited, as is likewise certainly the case and if such variations should be useful to any animal under changing conditions of life, then the difficulty of believing that a perfect and complex eye could be formed by natural selection, though insuperable by our imagination, should not be considered as subversive of the theory. How a nerve comes to be sensitive to light, hardly concerns us more than how life itself originated; but I may remark that, as some of the lowest organisms, in which nerves cannot be detected, are capable of perceiving light, it does not seem impossible that certain sensitive elements in their sarcode should become aggregated and developed into nerves, endowed with this special sensibility. 

    That’s all fine and dandy. But again, notice the key words
    Reason tells me
    believing
    it does not seem impossible
    should

    Now, he makes the excellent point of gradations. And that makes sense for a particular entity. What becomes a bit harder, is when you add a synergistic nature of organs depending on hormones released by other organs. They would have to change together no? I’m not saying it’s not possible, but it makes the actual process a bit harder, IMHO.

  • RK

    I have no objections to ID and any other “made up baloney” being taught in a philosophy class. However, saying evolution should be taught there as well is absurd. Should we also send gravity and plate techtonics to philosophy class? What will be left for science?

    Gravity is an observable fact. The “theory of gravity” is our best scientific explanation for it. Evolution is also an observable fact – it happens. The “theory of evolution” is our best scientific explanation for it. The theory could be wrong on some points, but not the fact that evolution occurs.

    There is no observable basis for Intelligent Design. There’s no way to prove or disprove it (like all other religious stuff). There’s only “that couldn’t have possibly happened naturally.” “Why not?” “Because it’s too complicated!” “Why?” “Because it is!”

  • rickrajter

    Gravity as a model works quite well and should be taught in science.

    However, the underlying reason WHY it works has still not been solved by science as a majority. Though other theories are quickly discounted anyway, so I guess we’ll just have to accept that it works for now.

  • CC

    Evolution as a model works quite well and should be taught as science.

    Which is also true for evolution. Strange how other theories are acceptable, but one that people find objectionable on religious grounds should be rejected as scientifically valid, even though it is at LEAST as well substantiated?

  • Taylor

    It does not follow that the more complex something is, the more impossible it is to happen by natural means. Where some would have issues is in the concept of natural means. Many people don’t believe in “accidents.” Thus, they have a thick wall that prevents them from objective logic.

  • Taylor

    I challenge anyone to post the theory of Intelligent Design as it is being presented as an alternative to Evolution. Please post the actual theory as it stands only. Also, post the source it came from (book, journal, web page, etc.). Then we can properly test this theory by attempting to disprove it, which is the basis of all scientific method. Whereas I understand that this is not a scientific journal or proper scientific forum, I would guess that any logical arguments would still stand up to even an amateur level of objective scrutiny.

  • DC

    As well as the link between pirates and global warming, there seems also to be a curious link between poor writing skills (not to mention foul, abusive language) and religious fervor. Doubters should scan the hate mail posted on the Flying Spaghetti Monster site.

    DC

  • http://gnuosphere.blogspot.com Peter Rock

    Stephen,

    If I’m not mistaken, it would seem as though you were mocking Intelligent Design as a science. I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt though.

    We need to crush the scientists and their curriculum if we are to give the FSM the rightful place in our minds He deserves.

    I am suggesting going head-to-head with them to see who can write a stronger curriculum. However, they keep holding out on their copyrighted materials because they are afraid to hear the truth and are trying to censor our speech.

    Let’s show them what science really is.

    http://gnuosphere.blogspot.com/2005/11/it-is-serious-offense-to-block-god.html

  • Kevin

    How do I accept the Flying Spaghetti Monster into my heart?

  • Elliott

    Intelligent Design: How God was created.

  • http://gnuosphere.blogspot.com Peter Rock

    Kevin:

    How do I accept the Flying Spaghetti Monster into my heart?

    Just think about Him as much as possible. For everything that happens, don’t accept any explanation other than “It was Him”, and one day you will be touched by His noodly appendage.

  • Stephen Gordon

    I may have to rethink this whole FSM thing considering Peter’s comment and my blog entry of tonight about gay pedophilic priests. I’m not so sure that I wish to be touched by a noodly appendage anymore. :)

  • http://gnuosphere.blogspot.com Peter Rock

    Rick:

    Gravity as a model works quite well and should be taught in science.

    However, the underlying reason WHY it works has still not been solved by science as a majority.

    It’s simple to explain really.

    Intelligent Falling.

    Done.

    NEXT!

  • Lex

    Intelligent Design Doesn’t even have an official Hypothesis, or at least none that they have posted. And I am still trying to find out what was there before God, or how God came into being. For some reason they refuse to answer me :(
    Science has continually been able to push science away from being taught as a fact, this really is a pathetic last ditch effort by religion to remain mainstream (IMHO). The fact that it is actually being seriously considered is proof of human stupidity on a large scale. They ask us for proof of human evolution? Historical records show that as the generations pass we are growing taller. And thats only the tip of the iceburg. Religion should become a philosophy studied for how it affected people, and their decisions. Religion isn’t a bad thing, it has given hope to allot of people and made them aspire to do (mostly) good things. Personally i much prefer the idea of karma, much more elegant (IMHO).
    If intelligent Design must be taught, FSM must also be taught, it is just as likely to be correct :)

  • Taylor

    It seems apparent that where so many will welcome the possibilty of an infinite future, so few will accept an infinite past. I would like to add to this thought that in critique of some’s arguments against the Big Bang, there is large evidence to support it in the visible movement of galaxies as observed and measured. What many do not realize is that science has never claimed that the most recent Big Bang was the only one or that all matter in the universe was created out of nothingness. The Big Bang theory claims that matter had condensed at a point before the Big Bang to a dense cluster before exploding outward. No one has claimed in science that said matter was not there beforehand via earlier activity. Also, new theories are being supported by evidence that our “known universe” may be just that, and other Big Bangs may have occured elswhere in space and in the infinance of time.

  • Claudia

    Evolution IS fact it IS proven. Hell in the lab one uses the ability of bacteria to adapt, that is, evolve, to your advantage, to turn them into something useful. What people tend to refer to as evolutionary theory is that Darwinian evolution (adjusted for modern knowledge of genetics) is responsible for the way life evolved through time. There is a great deal of actual evidence that this is at least partly the case. It’s a theory because not everything can be proven by it.

    It’s silly to say that just because a theory can’t prove ANYTHING it’s not valid at all. Gravitation is a theory, Newton doesn’t explain everything, just ask Einstein. Do we stop teaching it? Do we say that God is responsible for the way bodies act at velocities near the speed of light? NO, we keep searching, keep testing, that’s what science is all about.

    Evolutionary theory is taught as fact in school, so is gravitation. Kids who grow up to be biologists will learn the details about the gaps and some alternative (though not mutually exclusive) SCIENTIFIC hypothesis. Kids who grow up to be physicists will learn quantum mechanics and the things we still can’t explain. Kids who grow up to be Kansas school commissioners will say “God did it”.

  • Claudia

    sorry! I meant just because a theory can’t prove EVERYTHING…I should proof-read as well as spellcheck, I know

  • http://gnuosphere.blogspot.com Peter Rock

    Claudia says:

    Evolutionary theory is taught as fact in school, so is gravitation.

    Yeah and there are major gaps. I still propose Intelligent Falling should be taught. After all, if science can’t 100% prove gravity, how do you know our natural state isn’t just to float? Perhaps the FSM is actually pressing His noodly appendage upon our heads to keep us from floating out of the atmosphere.

    Teach the Controversy!!!

  • Elliott

    Very true, Peter.

    In FACT, science cannot 100% prove that any of us actually exist. We could all be figments of the FSM’s imagination (he’s using his noodle). At the atomic level we are mostly empty space anyway, and at the subatomic level scientists’ best guess is that we are composed of “superstrings” (Which sounds remarkably like some common forms of pasta to me).

    To correct Descartes: “I think, therefore I am, I think.”

  • Taylor

    Cluadia,

    You have made some excellent points.

    Thank you for expressing them clearly and politely.

    This debate, in general, is not being argued by those willing to comprimise personal vendettas and use polite discussion. I am surprised at how many, avid commenters, on all sides can resort to such insulting and abusive language. This does not further either’s causes.

  • Magnus Vile

    All the way back to the first comment…

    Isn’t it more than a little dishonest to only quote this part?
    “To suppose that the eye, with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light…could have been formed by natural selection seems, I freely confess, absurd in the
    highest possible degree…The belief that an organ as perfect as the eye
    could have formed by natural selection is more than enough to stagger
    anyone.”

    And to totally miss the point that the complete paragraph looks like this,

    “To suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest degree. Yet reason tells me, that if numerous gradations from a perfect and complex eye to one very imperfect and simple, each grade being useful to its possessor, can be shown to exist; if further, the eye does vary ever so slightly, and the variations be inherited, which is certainly the case; and if any variation or modification in the organ be ever useful to an animal under changing conditions of life, then the difficulty of believing that a perfect and complex eye could be formed by natural selection, though insuperable by our imagination, can hardly be considered real. How a nerve comes to be sensitive to light, hardly concerns us more than how life itself first originated; but I may remark that several facts make me suspect that any sensitive nerve may be rendered sensitive to light, and likewise to those coarser vibrations of the air which produce sound.”

    Why leave out the whole point of the passage, which was Darwin actually trying some real science and attempting to counter possible arguments against his theory?

    In fact, this seems to be a common tactic of both Creationists and ID advocates. Misquoting and misrepresenting the actual positions held by various scientists in an attempt to discredit widely accepted scientific principles.

    Evolution is science, and one of the best supprted theories that the human race has ever developed. That is theory in the scientific sense, and not, as many people seem to believe, theory in the sense of, “An idea I had while drunk”

  • Magnus Vile

    And to continue, the entire chapter that follows details arguments that could be levelled against his theory and counters them. That is the whole point of science.

    If someone comes up with a theory that better fits the evidence then fame, fortune, the Nobel prize and science groupies await.

    And yet, no one ever has. Not once. Not even a little bit. Evolution, after around a century and a half of people trying to falsify it remains, not only unfalsified, but better supported than it has ever been.

    Although, for those that don’t agree, you can always feel safe in the knowldge that Avian Flu is never going to mutate and affect humans. So, save time and skip that flu shot, and don’t let all those fictions of evolving “Superbugs” worry you.

    You’ll be fine, I’m sure.

    Well, I’m not, but apparantly you are.

  • rickrajter

    Magnus,

    Yes, the rest of the passage does attempt and try to reason it away. Do you find the explanation complete? One would expect for small changes that each incremental step would give an inherent advantage over the previous version. For an eye, which consists of multiple components, gaining only 1 component in a particular generation would be insufficient. Let’s say there is no optic nerve, no cornea, no anything. A small perturbation by say adding a rod or a cone would not be sufficient from having nothing to being able to see. The entire structure would have to simultaneously “evolve” at the exact same time. Since evolution as I understand it involves random mutations. So using machinary as an example, if one were to “evolve” a computer into a car, giving a computer 1 wheel at a particular generation actually offers no intrinsic value to the computer. It may pass on or not. But there would have to be a continuous path to get from point A to B, and many of those transition states don’t truly seem all that beneficial.

    For an eye, it’s not impossible to concieve of such a path, but what becomes statistically troubling is how many species develop the same exact style of eyes (meaning that they all involve the same parts much like all cars consist of an engine, motor, gas tank, etc). And where are the species with 1 eye? 3 eyes? eyes in the back of the head? That would certainly be advantageous!

    Again, “evolution” as a particular species altering over time is something that I can easily buy into. The evolution of man fom the ameoba as well as the incorporation of a soul becomes a bit more difficult for me to just blindly accept.

    But, to each his own.

  • Claudia

    Taylor, thanks! I can say that, at least from the scientific side of the so called “debate” the anger mostly has to do with finding that there is a fundamental lack of understanding about what science IS, and how important the scientific method is.

    Rick, although I appreciate that it’s hard to imagine that a single-cell organism can evolve through random mutation into a human being, it’s about as good as science has at the moment. There are other promising hypothesis about how evolution can “jump” using other biological mechanisms (gene duplication, massive mutations due to extreme conditions like UV radiation etc.) there have been very few tests done and so far as I am aware, none of them have given very good results. Which isn’t to say we should stop searching, quite the contrary.

    But what’s being discussed here isn’t different evolutionary theories, it’s the current evolutionary theory against a belief that has nothing to do with science, since it doesn’t follow the scientific method (has no evidence, doesn’t even seem to have a way of being tested). I can and have argued for hours with fellow biologists about the ups and downs of different evolutionary schools of thought, but can’t argue about the scientific merit of ID, the same way I can’t talk about the scientific merit of the Back Street Boys. Apples and oranges.

    Finally, and although I respect the religious beliefs of those who have them, I must say that evolution does not contemplate the soul. The soul is not an entity; it’s not even clear what the definition of “soul” is. You are free to believe in souls, I think it’s normal for us to think of ourselves as something more than the sum of our cells, but, you can’t argue against evolution of any sort because it doesn’t explain the soul. Not until you can put the soul in a test tube, so to speak.

  • KidDirty

    Rick,

    If you can’t believe the eye evolved once than the truth will be even harder for you to grasp. Many biologists believe that eyes have evolved separately as many as five different times.

    We can look at organisms with simple eyes or precursory light receptors, and they have many structures analgous to structures in the eyes of more specialized organisms. I agree there would have to be a couple of dramatic structural modifications along the way, but its not unthinkable.

    C’mon look at what we know about changes to the inner ear structure throughout reptilian, avian, mamalian, etc. evolution, transition of dental formulas in primate evolution, and my personal favorite, the undeniable evidence from endogenous retroviruses.

    Yes many modifications we now see, seem astounding, but that shouldn’t stop us from attemting to explain them and just say “GODDIDIT”.

    And using out of context quotes ripped straight from the Discovery Institutes website, is no way to stimulate intelligent discourse on the subject.

  • rickrajter

    Claudia,

    Thanks for the well thought out response.

    Many people are mistaken in assuming I think intelligent design or creationism should be taught in the science class. I don’t think that’s a smart idea, and such theories would be better placed in philosophy.

    I will agree, ID makes no predictions and leaves a lot to be desired from the scientific community. I mean, there’s no formulation, and only the unsatisfying answer that “God willed it”. Science hates that. I understand why, because as humans, we demand knowing every single detail of everything. If someone comes up with a theory that just ends in “because”, it must be rejected. Am I far off here? :)

    Perhaps I’m being unreasonable and hard headed here, but I hardly think of evolution as the answer as the theory currently stands. I’m the type of person that questions almost everything in life… except religion really (hey, I have nothing to hide here). It seems most people are exactly the opposite. They will accept everything else in the world, but abhor and scrutinize religion with everything they have.

    I’ll stick to the workings of Walter Russel thank you. His explanations of both science, religion, and their combinations thereof are far more consistant and appealing to me than “faith” in evolution as it currently stands.

    But by all means, keep trying to “convert” me to evolution :)

    Cheers

  • Claudia

    Rick, I can’t convert you to evolution for the same reason that you can’t convert me to religion, we speak different philosophical languages. I speak the language of science, which requires as few un-proved assumptions as possible, logic, reproducible and falsifiable evidence etc. You speak the language of faith, which holds unquestionable truths, hunches, feelings. In a sense religion is stronger, since you can’t assail faith with logic, but you can assail logic with other logic.

    It’s good that you question things, but you make an exception for God, as befits a religious person. I also question things, but I make no exceptions for God, and when you question religion and science with logic…well, science wins by a landslide.

    Of course schoolchildren are taught to accept evolution (and all other subjects, scientific or not) the way Christians are taught to accept the Bible, unquestionable, unshakable fact. This is partly necessary to speed up the learning of the basic concepts of current science, but it has the inconvenience of making many kids uncurious, being that everything is presented like a done deal, not an ongoing battle. It’s what I love about science. Unlike religion, that’s “like it or leave it” science is forever changing, questioning, growing, challenging you to question what came before.

    I’d love to think that some nice being in the sky was looking out for me and for the rest of the world, it must be a comforting thought. But for now the best I can hope for is that people from my side of the aisle and from your side can get along with a little more elegance than that shown in, say, congress, or the 700 club. ;-)

  • rickrajter

    Claudia,

    I spent 23 years as an atheist, vehemently oppossed to all the views of my ‘religious fanatic’ friends. Trust me, the skepticism WAS there :)

    I will have to disagree with you on one point, the need to “speed up” the learning process. I think that it’s harmful to not fully understand the foundations properly. Most of the problems in trying to merge special relativity to general relativity stem from the assumptions made way back. Time gives credibility and thus older formulations are impossible to overthrow.

    Case in point, the maxwell equations (as simplified to the heavyside-maxwell equations) are sufficient in explaining how basic circuits and computers work. However, once modern science comes to grips with the idea that the “electric field” between a negative and positive charge is continously pouring energy out from the vacuum, we’ll finally be able to exploit this and eliminate much of the polluting energy production processes.

    link to flaws on maxwell equations
    http://www.cheniere.org/misc/flaws_in_classical_em_theory.htm
    10 trillion percent of the current produced is wasted
    http://www.cheniere.org/briefings/circuitcurrents/index.html

    Too much of science is spent racing to the punchline without understanding the basics. While we shouldn’t reinvent the wheel at every turn, it’s also unwise to just accept everything as solved and move on.

    k, I’m done. This thread’s already been going on forever :)

  • http://www.tidemar.se Mike Timer

    I was brought up as a Christian, in a very normal Swedish family. Darwinian “theory”, as you call it, is, if you talk to any biologyprofessor in the world, an actual scientific fact. There’s no gaps in evolution anymore, we did in fact evolve from apes (the missing links between apes and man have been discovered just as Darwin predicted). If you don’t know where the dust that formed our planet came from, I suggest you take an evening class in astronomy (answer to earlier comment).
    Being of an IQ above 140, I must think things through before believing in them, there’s fact and there’s fiction. There’s plenty of fiction litterature out there today, doesn’t mean that I believe in them if I read them? The greatest fiction book of all time must be the Bible (no kidding, please hear me out). “Accurate facts” being told over hundreds of years, tend to be told exaggerated and edited, you heard me – edited, just like you do if you want people to be mesmerized from time to time, you have to renew the stories. Miracles which Jesus performed were written down and exaggerated over hundreds of years, if you actually would be able to find the original texts, not fictional but factual texts, I’m betting my “soul” on that it shows no actual miracles but a story about maybe the greatest prophet of the time. There was a lot of prophets around at the time, Jesus had the best ideas so they were remembered and written down.
    Anyway, taking the creationism from the Bible literally, disguised as ID or not, is like I would actually stone my sons and daughters for being disobedient pests (it’s in there – if you actually read it, you’ll become an atheist like me a lot faster). How do you take only parts of the Bible literally if you believe in the whole book as a basis of your beliefs? The problem facing our children of today is brain washing, particularly religious beliefs being forced on our children. I believe in science as it has to be proven, stood up to tests and scrutiny. How about the bible, can you actually prove anything written in there? “Just because it is written, doesn’t make it so.” In the early 15th century people wrote that earth was flat and that the sun revolved around earth. Anything else was heresy according to the church, basically the same church of modern christianity today. The bible is much older than the 15th century and you believe the contents? The church has always opposed free thought and freedom of speach, why is that? To keep the people believing of course. In the beginning of christianity in Europe, the bible was written in latin, the only people who knew the contents were priests. To become a believer back then must have been easy, the best parts of the bible were told and miracles are very mesmerizing in a time of dispair. But today, when the bible has been edited further and translated to all different languages, how can you ignore parts of it and take other parts literally?
    - My point is ID should never be taught in science since it has nothing to do with science. Religion is a philosophy of life basically, if you feel the need to believe in something larger, as in God or something similar, I don’t mind at all, just keep it away from the school system and consequently my children.

  • C B

    To Mike Timer, an atheist

    There are some of us here in America of Swedish extraction that are very much believers in a higher power. Why?

    Because we reside in the birthplace of the Noodly Appendage? Because we know that there is indeed and in fact something that cares about us, that is beyond comprehension and is not nearly related to any male-oriented diety?

    How about this. God is a female. Jesus when coming back, if he so desires and in whatever form he cares to choose, is also female. God is a female, so is the next Jesus to be.

    Now, how in the world will this male-dominated world take to that? Well, look at it this way. Jesus, when he originally appeared rejected political and material “power” and rightly so. So did the Buddha.

    They were both males. Isn’t it time for a refreshing change? How about a FEMALE deity. Oh, that will certainly go over well with the current Pharisees and Sadducees, will it not?

    God most definitely has a sense of humor (witness the Spaghetti phenomenon), and wouldn’t you know, it probably isn’t male-oriented at all! What a disappointment. God isn’t a male, and any second coming won’t be male-oriented either. Remember, the Jews 2,000 years ago were looking for a political/secular leader and boy were they ever disappointed! Enough to crucify their own Savior. Is that not the gratitude of a basically atheist world, that thinks a deity is either fashioned in its own likeness, or otherwise is unworthy? Such are humans. We all fall short.

    Now, what are we all do? Cry? How female. No, we are to suck it up and say once and for all, divinity is exactly what it cares to be. Male, female, Jesus or whatever, it is what it is and we all can accept it, whatever it cares to be at whenever time it cares to appear to us.

    Be grateful when you are in the presence of something truly godlike, because we are all precious in his/her/their sight, and also recognize the fact that we are all on this earth at this place and time for a reason, if only to question the current paradigm.

    Bless your heart, Mike, for being an athiest, if that is what you so choose, but some of us know better and are looking forward to a world inhabited by people who love each other and their God equally.

    And, by the way, you are in every way equal to any God you can imagine. How about that for all the so-called believers in this world.

  • http://www.ravenpixel.com Rebecca V

    I am a sciences undergrad, and I have loved science my whole life. I am also a very spiritual person, and, in my opinion, science validates the awesome power of the Creator. Furthermore, Creationism is INSULTINGLY LIMITING of the Creator’s power to a humanly comprehensible scale. We’re not supposed to be able to fathom what a million years is, what a billion years is. If it took over a billion years for even the simplest of archaebacteria to appear how could we compete with that with our pathetic (but still amazing) microspheres?

    If we assume, for example, that atoms exist, we still have no idea HOW they exist, and if you look way down deep at all the mechanisms and complexities and the time it took for our species to develop its cognizance and the ability to WONDER about these things… Well, the time scale and patience (etc etc) is phenominaly great.

    Creationism limits God. Science, whether you believe in a higher power or not, is testable, and on top of that it is really quite amazing.

  • Tyrone Haviland

    I am a Northeast Prep-School Liberal-Arts educated student of English, Math, and the arts. I hate science passionately. I am a pastafarian.

    I have been informed (please correct me if this is inaccurate) that the only honest facts we have, which are not based on educated guesses, pattern observations, or reasonable assumptions, are such:
    -that there are a number of different organisms in the world;
    -that there are mutations between generations within species;
    -that genes are passed from parent to child, and that these genes (ignoring mutations) define the makeup of the next generation;
    -and that (according to experimentation in the second half of the 20th century) extremely simple life can be made out of non-living organic materials.

    Given these facts, it seems to me, as apparently it seems to many, that Darwin’s theories on natural selection and the evolution of the human species are the most simple theories which can be supported. Ockam’s Razor tells us that the simplest theory is probably the correct one.

    However, while the theory of evolution is gaining evidence, the religion of evolution is based on “post hoc ergo propter hoc” logic. A theory’s status as the simplest, most reasonable explanation of a situation does NOT constitute a guarantee of its accuracy. If we see a man and a woman wearing matching wedding rings kiss one another hello and eat dinner together, we may assume that they are a married couple; however this theory we have created DOES NOT disprove the theory a friend of ours may advance, in which the two are opposed hired assassins with overactive sex drives, who are discussing a location at which to duel later that night.

    In such a way is the argument between between evolution and intelligent design. While one may be the more reasonable and simple conclusion based on our collected evidence, there is a distinct lack of proof to discredit the other theory. Therefore, while I am to no extent a believer in any intelligent designer, (excepting, of course, the holy Prince of Parmesean, He whose googly eyeposts see all) I feel that evolution and intelligent design must share classroom time to at least a certain extent.

    -TH

  • Taylor

    Thank you so much Rebecca,

    You nailed it.

    I am also, like others have stated before, an atheist. This is a decision based on my examination and evaluation of my own experiences. In my mind, everything has an explanation of a non-spiritual nature, even if not first apparent. However, I refuse to limit others to my lack of spirituality. I see no valid reason why someone cannot have viable belief in both a god and evolution. I would like to further re-state what you already have. Evolution is absolutely amazing, and the fact that it is tangible and logical makes it doubly so. If I were spiritual, I would be warmed and reassured in my faith, knowing that such amazing happenings have occurred throughout time and space.

    On a side note, however, below will be my first, and hopefully last, negative comment. Understand that this is in no way intended towards you, Rebecca. You were eloquent.

    I do not appreciate some posters on this forum dictating to me about my future and my level of understanding. Using phrases like “you will see in the end…” and “someday you might grasp…,” is condescending in a way that is almost intolerable for me. I don’t mean to sound over-reactionary, but those of you out there have no idea who I am and what I understand. How dare anyone make rude or vain attempts to belittle me? It is simply uncalled for.

    This goes for both sides of the argument. Sorry for the angry tone, but I wanted to convey my point.

  • Taylor

    Tyrone,

    Great post.

    I must politely disagree with your end point, however.

    A basic premise of Intelligent Design is the existence of a designer. This is problematic when considering its standing in a debate against two sides showing “evidence.” The key problem is, of course, that one cannot show intent as a piece of “evidence,” since it is not a solid concept within the field of logic. No matter what is shown to back the concept of intent, there is the automatically opposing and valid concept of chance. Whereas, both probabilities reduce with certain evidence, there can still be a winner as chance can be logically and mathematically measured and predicted, thus making it a better candidate for conclusions. The intent of a designer is unknowable without making non-evidenced claims. Therefore, even if there is a designer, the design could still be by chance and not the designer’s intent at all. This is why removing the intent element, assuming chance, and looking at the evidence that is testable is the better solution. Teaching a hypothesis (not theory) like Intelligent Design would be detrimental to students who have not been raised with a belief in creation as it would have far less logical backing evidence than the theory of evolution. Critical thinking skills could be severely stunted.

  • Decey

    It is amazing that people do not realize that a scientific theory has nothing to do with belief or opinion. Scientific theory is a product of analysing data,which comes from repeatable experiment and observable fact.Science is the basis of Critical thinking.Unlike religion science is continually updating itself through new observations. Also Science admits it is wrong,when it has made a mistake and tries to correct its errors.

    How many people with an opinion on the Evolution -ID debate have read Darwin’s “Origin of Species”? Read the title .Does it say Origin of life? NO! So evolution doesn’t exclude the possibillity of a superior intelligence. (For that matter how many people have read and researched anything they have opinions on IE :the so called “Patriot Act” which is touted as needed to protect us-while it actually turns the US closer to a police state) Science is what brought us all electronics, medicine,increased food production:in fact almost every man made object that makes our modern age possible exists because of scientific methodology. We won WW2 because our tech level was highest,we live so much longer and more comfortably because of science. It is sad to see my dear USA falling into ignorance while China and india are churning out brilliant scientists. Look at American universities and you will find all tech and science classes dominated by foreign students.The US will slowly fall in power and welth if this continues. It is incredible that people will make statements such as “I thinlk evolution is a matter of what you believe” “No it is not. it is an extrapolation of observable data. Or “I Do not like chemicals on my food” Food is made of chemicals and so are you. To the person who can not believe the eye came from evolution …please do some research…it has been well documented how the eye evolved. Also to those who say evolution has never been observed ….recently scientists have breed a new fruit fly that has markedly different food gathering appendages. DO NOT BELIEVE ANYTHING or ANYONE UNTILL YOU USE CRITICAL THINKING(SCIENCE)TO VERIFY THINGS FOR YOURSELF. Freedom depends on this.When religion or opinion or belief take the place of critical thinking, a police state is right around the corner. Long Live individual freedom

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  • http://disvoter.blogspot.com The Disenfranchised Voter

    Ramen, Stephen–Ramen.

  • Allan Clark

    Funny how this has become a biblical debate — that which Christians hold so sacred is merely the 4 books that Constantine felt held similar stories, of the 20 he saw. That’s like taking 20 eye-witnesses, finding 4 that seem to agree, and making a book of them.

    Human Evolution (ie not dinosaurs) is based on a collection of bones that would cover a few billiard tables, if piled up in heaps. It’s a little more than 4-in-20 blackbirds cawing the same tune, and may evidence a progression by mutation, it’s not rock-solid.

    Our debate is back to a science classroom. Science. That “Scientific Theory” thing. Which one looks more scientific?

  • Joe Green

    The problem with intelligent design, as I see it, is due to the logical fallacy upon which the theory is based. According to ID, due to a level of complexity inherit in existence, there must be a God. So the question arises, if things were simpler, would that negate the requirement?

    The fallacies in the theory also create theoretical experiments that quickly turn on the proponents of ID. For example, Could a system start off simple enough to not require a creator and grow in complexity to such a degree that a God was necessary?. Or another example, would a simpler understanding yield more disbelief?

    Personally, I am in favor of letting the champions of this theory have their way as I think the poor logic behind such theories will undermine their credibility. I am certain that followers with these poor critical thinking skills will be prone to suggestion and manipulation. This should give a rather large advantage to those who think more clearly.

  • Gnosisless

    I’d like to propose the following theory: Magic Faeries frequently untie my shoelaces.

    To Wit:
    1. I am careful to tie my shoelaces tightly every morning.
    2. I frequently find my shoelaces untied.
    3. Magic Faeries have magic powers and are known to be mischievous.
    4. Nothing ever directly pulls on my shoelaces.
    5. It is ludicrous to assume the cumulative forces of a day’s walking could untie them.
    6. I cannot explain exactly how they become untied despite many carefully documented theories which appear to address the general concept.

    QED Magic Faeries exist and they are untying my shoelaces.

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  • JabbaHutt444

    Just to clear up a few things which have been said previously but which I couldn’t respond to closer to the time of writing as I have only just stumbled upon this site:

    Claudia – as much as there is a monumental amount of evidence SUPPORTING evolution it can absolutely NEVER be proven as this defies the entire of the scientific method -nothing can be proven without doubt as we do not have the ability to observe the infinity of time. Don’t get me wrong, evolution is supported almost beyond doubt. However, it is not, and never will be (along with any scientific theory) proven.

    Rick – I can think of 3 different forms (common mammalian – e.g. ours, insectoid e.g. fly, arthropod – e.g. octopus)of eyes off the top of my head and I’m not even a biologist. If anything the eye is one of the finest examples of evolution rather than a refutation of it. If the eye truly were designed then why do we have a blind spot whilst others do not?

  • http://www.river-belle.ws Riverbelle

    Some interesting ideas. Is it possible to get notified of future updates from your blog?

    Cheers,

    Wayne

  • Ike

    Ok Lets say I discoiver the process to Terraform the moon.
    After engaging the program the Moon develops Animal & plant life.

    So my question to the “Law Evolition” Folks is this.

    Did Life evolve on the moon from billions of years of Natural Selection & Mutation or Did I the inventor of Terraforming CREATE life on the moon?

    A Second pont to ponder:

    I have a Black Mouse. I want a Glowing Blue Mouse.
    Through 10 years of tial and error using Genetic Modification I end up with a Blue Glowing Mouse.

    Care to explain how I did not really create the
    mouse but it was really a product of natural
    Selection & millions of years of Evolution?

    The Problem you folks have is your so wrapped up in Athiest BELIEF & DOGMA that you’ve take n the role of the Anti Science Church & anyone who questions Darwineism is labeled a backward thinking heritic & blasphemer.

    Go figure…

    Ike

  • ricky

    COME ON PEOPLE, THIS THING IS MADE OF NOODLES AND 2 MEATBALLS. ARE YOU ALL NUTS???? WE’RE BELIEVING PASTA CREATED THE WORLD?! LMAO!!!!!

  • JabbaHutt444

    Ike,

    If, as you think, we were designed and created by a perfectly intelligent designer then why are we such imperfect creations? We, along with every species, have junk DNA and superfluous bodily organs such as the tonsils and appendix. If God is so great and an infinitely fabulous designer then why the hell did he bother with these? Why do we have blind spots when other species do not?

    Evolution is without doubt one of the most elegant, highly explicant and, most importantly, evidentially supproted theory – until you can put aside YOUR “Belief & Dogma” I would cease attempting to use sarcasm as poorly as you employ it – the sarcastic arrogance of the deliberately ignorant is just about the most repugnant thing one can find on the web. Please go and start thinking objectively and maybe you can start shedding all of your pointlessly anti-science positions and start to see that whilst Science isn’t perfect it’s still by far the best process by which we can gain knowledge.

    G

  • JabbaHutt444

    Also,

    taking evolution to be true is not just the domain of atheists, it is also held by deists, christians, muslims, jains, sikhs, buddhists, taoists, confucians, rastafarians … the list goes on – it’s a scientific theory not a religion so don’t attempt to build up a strawman of evolutionist/atheism and attempt to attack that (although to be honest you would still fail miserably)

    G

  • joe toman

    i will… resist my temptation to level any jibes here, as should we all in this debate. right. it seems to me those who would label evolution as “just a theory” lack any clear notion of what a theory is: gravition being a theory, plate techtonics being a theory, amongst many others. they are not simply someone’s “idea”. they are series of nested hypothesi supported by vast bodies of observable evidence and reviewed rigorously by peers. yes, any of these theories may be disproven in the future, but the likely-hood is very small. but i assume this type of argument has already been read and studiously ignored by anyone willing to support id.

    god save us,

    joe toman

  • Ezkerraldean

    Intelligent Design only exists through (a) ignorance of evolutionary theory and (b) mindless adherence to religion. i have seen people turn to creationism because they are religious and because they DONT UNDERSTAND evolution, not because they have genuine evidence of creationism. I bet none of the people here who have tried to knock evolution do not really know what it is.

    (and these inconsistencies in the fossil record ID’ers keep going on about – WHAT inconsistancies?!?!?!?!?!!?!?)

  • http://MSN Corey

    It is quite simple. When we cannot understand, or prove, the truth…we must rely on faith. Otherwise we have no truth.

  • Tom

    Sunday school already teaches Creationism……..or ID..
    But DNA evidence really is the slam dunk, molecular ecology predicts and shows the rate of evolutionary change.

    You can see it in weeds, insect pest, fungi, bacteria, rodents, people. Every major group of organisms. Takes about 30-40 years for the weeds to gain resistence.

    They already use molecular evidence to convict criminals in the legal system. It’s okay there but not for Biological Science? the same evidence and methods are used in both cases.

    Educate yourself if you do not understand Evolution or do not think it is a Science. There are so many questions that can and are answered and the biological scientific revolution is very intensive right now.

    Why do you have an appendix? Some Creator’s joke?

    there are 4 main tenents:

    Vestigal organs
    Fossil record
    Ontogical similarity
    and DNA

  • David

    Old thread, but in case anybody is still reading…

    Tyrone Haviland wrote:
    “…there is a distinct lack of proof to discredit the other theory.”

    My reply: Asking for proof that something does not exist, is silly. We can only prove that something DOES exist. Example – It would be a mistake to demand proof that purple cows don’t exist. Nobody could ever truly prove that there’s no such thing as purple cows, because a purple cow could still be hidden someplace.

    Instead, the person who says there’s a purple cow has to show the cow to everyone else, or at least tell them where to find it so they can see for themselves. That’s how proof works, regardless of the topic.

    If I tell you I have a purple cow, but I won’t show it to you and I won’t tell you how to find it for yourself, you will (correctly) conclude that I don’t really have one.

    So if anyone asks you for proof of the non-existence of something, it means he is attempting to hide the fact that he has no evidence.