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Can you believe in evolution and in god?

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Humanism allows us to focus on the value of the information we get studying evolution in our various environments, without either anticipating or requiring god(s) to interact in observable ways. Critical thinking takes precedence over superstition, but god(s) aren't denied agency, and are free to become observable actors in those environments. It's not so much a belief in god(s) as it is leaving an empty chair at the table, allowing one to show up if she so chooses. Until then, evolution is much more interesting.

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I think there is too much focus on the old testaments here. The Christians I know only belief the parts about Jesus (I think those are called gospels). Everything else might have some foundation of truth and perhaps some morality but is not to be taken literally.

The gospels contain less obvious contraditions with science. Individual miracles are impossible to falsify. 

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1 hour ago, Bender said:

I think there is too much focus on the old testaments here. The Christians I know only belief the parts about Jesus (I think those are called gospels). Everything else might have some foundation of truth and perhaps some morality but is not to be taken literally.

The gospels contain less obvious contraditions with science. Individual miracles are impossible to falsify. 

 If you discount the old testament you lose any reason for jesus, if you just keep the parts of the old testament you like then it's nothing but cherry picking. 

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1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

 If you discount the old testament you lose any reason for jesus, if you just keep the parts of the old testament you like then it's nothing but cherry picking. 

If (the message of) Jesus is all that matters, the reason can be vague or missing. Why do you need to know the reason if God decided it was necessary?

At least that is how I perceived it. Since I never really believed any of it, I might not be the best source.

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4 minutes ago, Bender said:

If (the message of) Jesus is all that matters, the reason can be vague or missing. Why do you need to know the reason if God decided it was necessary?

At least that is how I perceived it. Since I never really believed any of it, I might not be the best source.

 

Jesus was the perfect sacrifice to atone for the original sin of Adam and Eve, since neither ever existed your only source is the old testament. Discount that and there is no reason to even come up with the jesus story much less believe it...  

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8 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

 

Jesus was the perfect sacrifice to atone for the original sin of Adam and Eve, since neither ever existed your only source is the old testament. Discount that and there is no reason to even come up with the jesus story much less believe it...  

I can't remember it ever being about "the original sin" in my religious education. It was a metaphore for all the bad things humans do.

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1 minute ago, Bender said:

I can't remember it ever being about "the original sin" in my religious education. It was a metaphore for all the bad things humans do.

 I would suggest you need to review your religious education, original sin (adam and eve defying god) is the only thing it's about... 

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8 hours ago, Moontanman said:

 I would suggest you need to review your religious education, original sin (adam and eve defying god) is the only thing it's about... 

I am glad you decide for everyone what their religion is about.

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49 minutes ago, Bender said:

I am glad you decide for everyone what their religion is about.

 

Ok, that is a good point, religion is often defined by the believer but to most religions that would be blasphemy. I honestly thought you were talking about mainstream christianity, my bad. Exactly what christian sect are we talking about? Can you provide a link to that teachings of that sect?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Original_sin

Quote

Catholicism[edit]

The Catechism of the Catholic Church says:

By his sin Adam, as the first man, lost the original holiness and justice he had received from God, not only for himself but for all humans.

Adam and Eve transmitted to their descendants human nature wounded by their own first sin and hence deprived of original holiness and justice; this deprivation is called "original sin".

As a result of original sin, human nature is weakened in its powers, subject to ignorance, suffering and the domination of death, and inclined to sin (this inclination is called "concupiscence").[65]

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/christianity/beliefs/originalsin_1.shtml

Quote

The sin of Adam

In traditional Christian teaching, original sin is the result of Adam and Eve's disobedience to God when they ate a forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden.

I see no point in debating the significance of mythology as though it were actually true. Adam and Eve cannot have existed as portrayed in the bible and there is no evidence Jesus as described in the bible ever existed.

Jesus is just a human version of the scapegoat, a long established part of middle eastern culture and jesus is portrayed as the lamb of god the perfect sacrifice which is the same thing as a scapegoat. All the sins of a city or country were metaphorically heaped up on a goat and it was driven from town to  be consumed by wild animals. 

Before you go there I'll tell you up front, the bible is not and cannot be evidence of itself. The Bible is a claim that requires evidence and while you are welcome to believe what you will and follow whatever sect you feel the need to follow none of it is based in reality. This is true of all religions BTW. 

As I have stated here many times nothing asserted in the Bible about the natural world that can be tested can be shown to be true... nothing! To me that is a heads up about the rest of it. As for the mythology behind it bear in mind that the original jewish religion had no concept of heaven, hell, or the devil. All that nonsense was picked up from Zoroastrianism when the persians conquered the Jews a few hundred years BCE. 

There is no evidence for the existence of any god, gods, goddesses, or anything else supernatural... I am however open to that evidence if it is provided... 

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3 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

 

Ok, that is a good point, religion is often defined by the believer but to most religions that would be blasphemy. I honestly thought you were talking about mainstream christianity, my bad. Exactly what christian sect are we talking about? Can you provide a link to that teachings of that sect?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Original_sin

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/christianity/beliefs/originalsin_1.shtml

I see no point in debating the significance of mythology as though it were actually true. Adam and Eve cannot have existed as portrayed in the bible and there is no evidence Jesus as described in the bible ever existed.

Jesus is just a human version of the scapegoat, a long established part of middle eastern culture and jesus is portrayed as the lamb of god the perfect sacrifice which is the same thing as a scapegoat. All the sins of a city or country were metaphorically heaped up on a goat and it was driven from town to  be consumed by wild animals. 

Before you go there I'll tell you up front, the bible is not and cannot be evidence of itself. The Bible is a claim that requires evidence and while you are welcome to believe what you will and follow whatever sect you feel the need to follow none of it is based in reality. This is true of all religions BTW. 

As I have stated here many times nothing asserted in the Bible about the natural world that can be tested can be shown to be true... nothing! To me that is a heads up about the rest of it. As for the mythology behind it bear in mind that the original jewish religion had no concept of heaven, hell, or the devil. All that nonsense was picked up from Zoroastrianism when the persians conquered the Jews a few hundred years BCE. 

There is no evidence for the existence of any god, gods, goddesses, or anything else supernatural... I am however open to that evidence if it is provided... 

What are you talking about? This thread is about the possibility to accept both evolution and religion. What I offer is the Belgian flavour of Catholicism I grew up in (which I presumably know better than you), where there is no conflict as the old testament is regarded as metaphorical. I don't understand why you insist that that interpretation of the bible is impossible.

It is not my interpretation; I think the new testament is mostly nonsense too. But that is not the topic of this thread.

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1 hour ago, Bender said:

What are you talking about? This thread is about the possibility to accept both evolution and religion. What I offer is the Belgian flavour of Catholicism I grew up in (which I presumably know better than you), where there is no conflict as the old testament is regarded as metaphorical. I don't understand why you insist that that interpretation of the bible is impossible.

It is not my interpretation; I think the new testament is mostly nonsense too. But that is not the topic of this thread.

...I hear that - but that isn't 'believing in god' as I see it. It is following some mashed up version of a religion - it sounds like they don't actually believe it (or haven't thought about the contradictions to reality). The church of England does the same - it waters it's Christianity down to fit the modern world and reality - most(some, don't know exact figure) of the priests don't actually believe in god and just want to do good things for people and the world....  which is fine - but it isn't believing in god.

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3 hours ago, DrP said:

...I hear that - but that isn't 'believing in god' as I see it. It is following some mashed up version of a religion - it sounds like they don't actually believe it (or haven't thought about the contradictions to reality). The church of England does the same - it waters it's Christianity down to fit the modern world and reality - most(some, don't know exact figure) of the priests don't actually believe in god and just want to do good things for people and the world....  which is fine - but it isn't believing in god.

So no true scotsman?

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19 minutes ago, Bender said:

So no true scotsman?

Is that not what they do? Change the definition of god when it suits them - it's all true and the unfailable word of god when they are preaching, but you can pick and choose bits when they run into trouble with contradictions with reality.

Sorry - I need to look up what the 'no true Scotsman' fallacy actually is in more detail before I can answer.  It is just my opinion also - I don't think they are being true to them selves if they are constantly moving the goal posts every time their belief is shown to be wrong. They claim it isn't wrong until you point out a contradiction and then it is claimed that that part can be ignored.

 

Edited by DrP

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5 hours ago, Bender said:

What are you talking about? This thread is about the possibility to accept both evolution and religion. What I offer is the Belgian flavour of Catholicism I grew up in (which I presumably know better than you), where there is no conflict as the old testament is regarded as metaphorical. I don't understand why you insist that that interpretation of the bible is impossible.

It is not my interpretation; I think the new testament is mostly nonsense too. But that is not the topic of this thread.

 

Thank you for the troll, It will make me think a bit before engaging someone who just wants to be contrary...  

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4 hours ago, DrP said:

...I hear that - but that isn't 'believing in god' as I see it. It is following some mashed up version of a religion - it sounds like they don't actually believe it (or haven't thought about the contradictions to reality). The church of England does the same - it waters it's Christianity down to fit the modern world and reality - most(some, don't know exact figure) of the priests don't actually believe in god and just want to do good things for people and the world....

2

Are you suggesting evolving is impossible for the religious? 

4 hours ago, DrP said:

which is fine - but it isn't believing in god.

That's your definition of something you don't believe, you seem determined they must retain something you can attack.

That's like demanding science retains the idea of phlogiston just so I can say "nope, you're wrong". 

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On 8/1/2018 at 4:28 AM, DrP said:

Because they take the god of the gaps and don't care that the gaps are closing. They don't really believe it - they assume there are things we don't understand. But the bible CLEARLY states it was 7 days...  if you start saying oh hold on, it doesn't actually mean 7 days, we need to interpret it to mean 7 billion years...  then they are lying to themselves imo. 

When they want to press a point it's 'but the bible says this...'    when you point out 'hold on - the bible says 'this' also, which is clearly untrue' you get, 'well you can't take it literally'.  If you can't take it 'literally' then you are left with a work of fiction.

 You can't do that with a book and claim it as the unfailable word of god. It is a work of fiction.  There is some beauty and wisdom in it, sure. But a fictional work none the less. The only reason one can believe in both evolution and god (of the bible or religions from books) is to suspend their own reasoning and lie to themselves...  if they 'think about it very deeply' as you put it Strange, then it is obvious - it doesn't even need 'deep' thought it is so obvious....  Took me decades though! lol.

 

Six days.  The Bible says creation spanned six days, not seven.  

Now I don't agree with it, but when "theistic evolutionists" articulate a faith that has room for both a Christian God and a mostly naturalistic evolutionary process, many do seem to only view a small subset of the Bible as metaphorical - often limited to a few chapters in Genesis.

In and of itself, I don't have a problem with this, as one could have a history book or a science book and come to a conclusion that a few chapters are wrong.  Deciding that a few chapters are wrong in a history or a  science book don't mean that the rest of the book is unreliable.  Beliefs of theistic evolutionists vary, but quite a number of them still take most of the New Testament literally - virgin birth, water into wine, death and resurrection of Jesus and so on.  That is not problematic for me.

What is problematic for me is that I have yet to hear any theistic evolutionist articulate a clear demarcation criteria for which chapters to exclude (or interpret as metaphors) and which to take literal historical accounts.   If one excludes some chapters from a history book, one would expect it is according to some established scholarly historical method that was evenly applied based on new information so that most objective historians would draw the same conclusions regarding which chapters are invalid.  Likewise, if one excludes some chapters from a science book, one would expect it is according to the established scientific method that would provide a broad consensus among the scientific community on which chapters were invalid based on new experiments and observations applying the scientific method.  But the theistic evolutionists are all over the map and just about every possible shade of grey between naturalism and supernaturalism is represented.  Not only is there no clearly articulated principles on what to exclude, when one asks detailed questions about various historical accounts of miracles in the Old Testament (the great flood, Red Sea parting, plagues on Egypt, water from the rock, stone tablets, parting of the Jordan, fire from heaven, and so on), one gets lots of different answers regarding their historical veracity.

The question theistic evolutionists have a hard time answering is "Now that you have excluded the creation account in Genesis 1-2 and the account of the fall in Genesis 3 from being literal, what is your objective criteria for excluding other apparently historical accounts of later supernatural events based on new historical or scientific information?"  Other than a personal subjective idea of not looking too stupid defending their faith in front of a given audience, those I've pressed on this point do not seem to have a criteria.  

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14 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

Are you suggesting evolving is impossible for the religious?

Obviously not, many evolve into rational thinking atheists... The truly sad thing is that the current Christian religion has changed over time, from a dogmatic, unchanging force that killed, maimed, and murdered to bring the population into alignment with the religious thinkers of the day mostly into a truly terrifying power hungry group quite willing to lie, cheat, steal, threaten, and pursue at all cost the power they lost by being gelded during the enlightenment. Potato patato I guess... 

 

Quote

That's your definition of something you don't believe, you seem determined they must retain something you can attack.

As you seem to be determined to defend the indefensible even though you don't believe it...  

The obvious answer to the OP is yes, we have many examples of people who do this very thing but it requires at the very least a disconnect from reality on some level... 

Edited by Moontanman

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3 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

Obviously not, many evolve into rational thinking atheists..

I guess you're suggesting Mr. Darwin wasn't rational.

7 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

As you seem to be determined to defend the indefensible even though you don't believe it... 

I'm just defending the wisdom I find in the words (not every) of most religions despite my opinion of a deity.

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9 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

I guess you're suggesting Mr. Darwin wasn't rational.

How so? 

9 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

I'm just defending the wisdom I find in the words (not every) of most religions despite my opinion of a deity.

Please list a few of those "words"... Then explain how they are only from and due to religion... Let's stick to the OP before we get righteously smacked by one of our moderators, this argument can't be picked up by the clean end...  

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8 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

How so? 

 

In answer to the OP, yes of course, because Charles Darwin did so, despite his reticence to publish. 

8 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

Please list a few of those "words"... Then explain how they are only from and due to religion... Let's stick to the OP before we get righteously smacked by one of our moderators, this argument can't be picked up by the clean end... 

 

Let's...

Edited by dimreepr

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2 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

In answer to the OP, yes of course, because Charles Darwin did so, despite his reticence to publish. 

Let's...

If you are really in the mood for a good smackdown feel free to start yet another redundant thread about the reality of god... I'll wait...  

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1 minute ago, dimreepr said:

In answer to the OP, yes of course, because Charles Darwin did so, despite his reticence to publish. 

I very much doubt he would if he lived in todays times.

 

41 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

Are you suggesting evolving is impossible for the religious? 

No.  But if you have to re-write the bible every few hundred years then it is clearly not the infailable word of god. Has god evolved in the last 2000 years?  The book says he is unchanging - and most believers would say he is unchanging..

 

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1 minute ago, Moontanman said:

If you are really in the mood for a good smackdown feel free to start yet another redundant thread about the reality of god... I'll wait...  

Why would I? I'm an atheist...

1 minute ago, DrP said:

I very much doubt he would if he lived in todays times.

That's not for you to decide.

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2 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

Why would I? I'm an atheist...

So you have evolved! 

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37 minutes ago, MathGeek said:


In and of itself, I don't have a problem with this, as one could have a history book or a science book and come to a conclusion that a few chapters are wrong.  Deciding that a few chapters are wrong in a history or a  science book don't mean that the rest of the book is unreliable.  Beliefs of theistic evolutionists vary, but quite a number of them still take most of the New Testament literally - virgin birth, water into wine, death and resurrection of Jesus and so on.  That is not problematic for me.
 

Virgin birth, risen from the dead, speaking in tongues (Which I have done and have seen many do....  they never get a reply from a foreigner though like they did in Acts), healing miracles, Angels from heaven, creatures with the head of a bear, feet of a lion and penis of a eagle (something like that), futuristic prophesy.. none of that problematic?

You know my favourite verse in the bible?  It is from James in the new testament and simply says:   " God is Love".

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