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Proving Evolution

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Welcome fellow evolutionary biologists, other biologists, other scientists, theologizes and of course other random people.

 

Proving Darwin’s theory of evolution for me is a simple task. However since many do not (and never will) accept this magnificent theory in all of its elegance, we will once again be in conflict where science shall have to fight against religion.

 

Darwin’s theory is based of something called "Natural Selection"

 

He states that:

 

1. Life forms will produce more young than could possibly survive.

2. Most life forms die before they can reproduce.

3. Life forms show variation.

4. Some variation will give life forms a competitive edge against other life forms of the same species.

 

 

This means that if subject A has a variation that will make it more likely to survive than subject B, then A will survive and may pass on its "positive variation"

 

This then means that most B variations will die out and many individuals in a group will posses the A variation.

 

however assume there’s a change in environment (event X) and now the b variation makes one more adapted to survive, eventually the B variation will be passed on and the A variation will fall in number.

 

th_eventxevolution.jpg

 

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One incident that was recorded is the "peppered moth" incident.

 

There were two types of peppered moth in London a while back. Dark and light. These moths were prey to birds that lived nearby. The light peppered moth was MUCH more difficult to see whilst on the bricks of London’s industrial buildings. However, as more and more fossil fuels were burnt, smoke would rise and combine with fog to create a very nasty substance known as smog. The smog colored the bricks of London black, and thus the dark moth was harder to see and the light moth would be seen and hunted much more easily. Later on there was a new law which stated that only "smokeless" coal could be burnt, and so the bricks became lighter, the dark moths disappeared and the light moths rose as a population. The graph to this is very similar to what we see in the above.

 

 

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And so this provides a proof for natural selection.

 

We need not look for a proof for variation as we need just to look around us and we will see humans very different from one another

 

Do most animals die before they reproduce?

 

A high school student would say no, but it is true that most will die before they can reproduce. 90% of some Great Cat young are killed before they reach one years of age.

 

Do life forms produce more young than could survive? Yes. A European might say no as they will think of humans as an example but in parts of the world where survival is difficult this is true. We find this is obvious as we observe other species. 1 in 400 frog eggs will survive to mature. 1 in 50 million oyster eggs will survive to reproduce.

 

And so if all of these factors are there, than how can we prevent evolution, nevermind trying to disprove it?

 

 

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Comments appreciated

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Comments appreciated

Proving Darwin’s theory of evolution for me is a simple task. However since many do not (and never will) accept this magnificent theory in all of its elegance, we will once again be in conflict where science shall have to fight against religion.

 

Thanks for propagating the Religion vs Science argument.

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Welcome fellow evolutionary biologists' date=' other biologists, other scientists, theologizes and of course other random people...

Comments appreciated[/quote']

 

Forget arguments from logic. Fundamentalist cults don't do logic. 'But God told me it's the other thing.' is all they need to know.

 

For illustration only:

Let's assume for the moment that you're not gay. (No offense to you personally.) Someone sits you in a classroom and forces you to read a gay porn novel, a really explicit one. It's enough to sicken you, even if you are philosophically tolerant towards gay folk.

 

That's how cultists feel when they have to open a biology textbook. To them, Darwin spits in the face of the version of God they've been taught about since infancy.

 

Don't worry, physics people. After evolution, there's the age of the universe and the obviously defective round earth theory. Also, political science folks, wars are blessed by God and the outcome decided by His intervention.

 

Get ready for the theocracy.

http://www.theocracywatch.org

http://www.theocracywatch.org/dominionism.htm

 

Dangerous Bill

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Forget arguments from logic. Fundamentalist cults don't do logic. 'But God told me it's the other thing.' is all they need to know.

 

For illustration only:

Let's assume for the moment that you're not gay. (No offense to you personally.) Someone sits you in a classroom and forces you to read a gay porn novel' date=' a really explicit one. It's enough to sicken you, even if you are philosophically tolerant towards gay folk.

 

That's how cultists feel when they have to open a biology textbook. To them, Darwin spits in the face of the version of God they've been taught about since infancy.

 

Don't worry, physics people. After evolution, there's the age of the universe and the obviously defective round earth theory. Also, political science folks, wars are blessed by God and the outcome decided by His intervention.

 

Get ready for the theocracy.

http://www.theocracywatch.org

http://www.theocracywatch.org/dominionism.htm[/quote']

 

Consider, that such attitudes are also much of the reason for the current conflict between fundamentalists and science. Arrogance on one side often destroys any opportunity for reconciliation.

 

Fundamentalists attack evoltution primarily because they understand it to be a threat. Little wonder that they should do when you have the likes of Dawkins running around proclaiming his nonsense.

 

Unfortunately I have not seen very many scientists try to promote meaningful dialogue. So we are left with a battle of two idealogues, one being the fundamentalist Christian, the other being the fundamentalist atheist scientist like Dawkins.

 

As a Christian I embrace evolution and percieve no threat, but then I have been educated and worked under rational professors who do not percieve religion to be the enemy. Many of these people are Christians themselves.

 

Im willing to admit the ignorance and wrong of many who claim to be Christians in propagating this stupid conflict.

 

How many of you are willing to do the same?

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Unfortunately I have not seen very many scientists try to promote meaningful dialogue. So we are left with a battle of two idealogues' date=' one being the fundamentalist Christian, the other being the fundamentalist atheist scientist like Dawkins.

 

As a Christian I embrace evolution and percieve no threat, but then I have been educated and worked under rational professors who do not percieve religion to be the enemy. Many of these people are Christians themselves.

 

Im willing to admit the ignorance and wrong of many who claim to be Christians in propagating this stupid conflict.

[/quote']

 

In fact, many illustrious biologists have tried to provoke meaningful dialog about evolution, and this has always turned out to be their weakness. Standing in front of a crowd with a tray of fossils and a logical argument is not much help when the opposition asks if the people really want to risk their immortal souls over an 'unproven theory'.

 

It is true that many Christians can easily reconcile modern science with their religion. That's why I separate and characterize fundamentalists as a 'cult'.

 

I, too, am a Christian, and I accuse these people of hijacking my God and turning him into a vengeful bigot.

 

Dangerous Bill

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Forget arguments from logic. Fundamentalist cults don't do logic.

I think that any argumant (one way or the other) will not sway a fundimentalist (religious or athiest). However, fundimentilists are not the only people that hold these views. Many people accept one view or the other simply because they have been taught that. They might be willing to listen to reson and these sort of discussions can have some influence.

 

Fundimentilists are a small minority (but they do shout loudly). The more educated people become and the more they are encouraged to be questioning of what they are told these fundimentalists will have less power (is this what they are realy afraid of?).

 

It is the non fundimentalist people that can be reached, and that is why I involve my self in these discussions and encourage others to enter them too (regardless of their beliefs), so long as they enter with an open mind and are willing to have a rational discussion.

 

1. Life forms will produce more young than could possibly survive.

I have seen a good demonstration/argument for this.

 

Immagin a pair of birds. If they produce a pair of chicks every year for 3 years, that would give them 6 young over their life time. If each of the young birds then produces 6 young per pair (so the second generation would produce 18 youg - 3 pais producing 6 each) and then these 18 produce 54 young, and so on. If this were to go on for just a few years you would get a massive amount of birds. If all of them survive and reproduce, where are all these birds?

 

A breeding pair needs to produce just 2 breeding adults in their entier life time to maintain the population (usually this works out as a bit more in reality but in an idealized demonstration it is close enough).

 

3. Life forms show variation.

4. Some variation will give life forms a competitive edge against other life forms of the same species.

This is the important bit. A lot of non evolutionist I have talked to think that survival of the fittest is all about the predator/prey survival. Their argument is that why hasn't the rabit evolved to always avoid the fox?

 

The answer is simple. If they did evolve to always escape from predators then they will be able to breed and breed untill there is no food left for them. The population will crash.

 

A group of rabits that did not evolve a trait that would leve them free from predators would have a more stable population and would survive in greater numbers than their Super Bunny(tm :D ) cousins. This would lead to the non Super Bunny genetics as the most dominant in the population.

 

Remember in the evolution game, you don't need to be the fastest, just not the slowest.

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Decent Contibutions people

 

i believe people must not forget that you are not competeting against your predetor only. you are completeing against all lifeforms within and without (is that even grammatically correct?) your species. in the reality of life you may have to fight you own family members for food and shelter and other such resources.

 

 

i believe the fight to disprove evolution is in vain. it is a idea that has been embraced in its simplicity.

 

i can forsee the day when it has become official that evolution is a truth, and not only a theory.

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In the lab I am a scientist, but when I go for a walk in the woods, I am a creature.

Some might even say, a specimen.

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In the lab I am a scientist' date=' but when I go for a walk in the woods, I am a creature.

Some might even say, a specimen.[/quote']

:confused:???:confused:

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I am a Christian, but I believe in evolution in my own ways. The "Theory of Evolution" is exactly what the name says, just a theory. Scientists who believe in this theory are welcomed to explain the theory and why they believe it, but they need to be careful to present it as a theory. Don't present it as a fact unless you have just discovered solid proof that can't be debated. The same rule should apply to Christians. They should be able to present their religion here without getting flamed, but they should be careful present it as a belief. People are talking about fundamental Christians being bad, but I once had a teacher in a public school who acted like an Atheist preacher. He was a nice teacher, but it got very annoying when he started preaching to the class.

 

As far as evolution is concerned, I believe that natural selection can cause genetic mutations in the DNA between generations. There just seems to be too much evidence to deny this. My personal belief is that God created a certain number of species. After that, I believe the species evolved into what they are today.

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The "Theory of Evolution" is exactly what the name says, just a theory.
so is gravity

 

 

Scientists who believe in this theory are welcomed to explain the theory and why they believe it, but they need to be careful to present it as a theory. Don't present it as a fact unless you have just discovered solid proof that can't be debated.
yea, literally seeing it happen isn't solid proof.

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so is gravity

 

I don't think that gravity is fully understood either. Yes, we all should know that gravity keeps us from floating off into space. But, can you explain how? Gravity is a force from all matter in the universe attracting each other, but why does matter behave this way? I haven't heard a full explanation, so it only makes sense that gravity remains a theory.

 

yea, literally seeing it happen isn't solid proof.

 

What did you see? Did you see the world's first unicellular organism and watch its descendants evolve into humans? I don't think so.

 

Scientists have watched short-term evolution occur among species. That doesn't mean God didn't create the common ancestors of these species.

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yay, herme3 is a stereotypical creationist with no understanding of evolution. what's he win, Bob?

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yay, herme3 is a stereotypical creationist with no understanding of evolution. what's he win, Bob?

 

You are making a fool of yourself. I just made a post about how Atheists and Christians both have their own beliefs, and they are welcomed to talk about them if they present them as beliefs. I never put Christians above Atheists in my post, but you are clearly putting Atheists above Christians. You are trying to make me look like a fundamentalist Christian when I was explaining how neither side has proof that can't be debated. You, however, are clearly being a fundamentalist Atheist.

 

You are a stereotypical Atheist with no understanding of Creationism...

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You are making a fool of yourself. I just made a post about how Atheists and Christians both have their own beliefs' date=' and they are welcomed to talk about them if they present them as beliefs. I never put Christians above Atheists in my post, but you are clearly putting Atheists above Christians. You are trying to make me look like a fundamentalist Christian when I was explaining how neither side has proof that can't be debated. You, however, are clearly being a fundamentalist Atheist.

 

You are a stereotypical Atheist with no understanding of Creationism...[/quote']

did i say ANYTHING about atheism?

 

facts>beliefs. science has facts. creationism is in direct opposition to the facts. in fact, AiG recently published an article with a chart showing several instances of such opposition.

 

btw, i was a creationist for a long time

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You are a stereotypical Atheist with no understanding of Creationism...

 

Creationism is a pretty easy concept - God did it. It isn't a theory or explanation, just a belief.

 

And about the Gravity bit. To draw a comparison, its as if someone would say, yes I believe there is gravity on Earth, but the solar system is held together by the hand of God. You can have that belief, but don't equate that as a scientific theory.

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did i say ANYTHING about atheism?

 

While you never used the word "atheism" you clearly objected to the possibility that God created the Earth. Your beliefs seem to be the same as those of an atheist.

 

facts>beliefs. science has facts.

 

Science itself is not against creationism. Creationism itself is not against science or facts. Creationism is against people who claim they are practicing "science" by claiming that debatable evidence is proof of an unproven theory.

 

creationism is in direct opposition to the facts.

 

The problem is that people are so busy looking for facts that are against creationism, that they don't look for facts that support creationism. The Bible can be used as evidence because it contains stories that our ancestors said they experienced. They said they had the evidence, so they wrote it down in a book. Isn't that exactly what modern scientists do with their evidence?

 

Just because The Bible is old doesn't mean it can't be true. The problem is that some scientists want to take something that is widely accepted and just say, "This has to be wrong, we need to find another answer." A good scientist should say, "Let's investigate the information that is listed in this book and try to prove or disprove them scientifically."

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Herme3, Your avatar is very accurate.

 

There are ancient texts older than the Bible, so clearly it is wrong. :)

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While you never used the word "atheism" you clearly objected to the possibility that God created the Earth. Your beliefs seem to be the same as those of an atheist.
nice false dilemma there

 

 

Creationism itself is not against science or facts.
if you tell a lie long enough, you'll start to believe it.

 

Creationism is against people who claim they are practicing "science" by claiming that debatable evidence is proof of an unproven theory.
show me this "debatable" evidence you keep speaking of. even if we throw it out, there is more than enough to substantiate evolution(including the fact that we can literally see it happening). creatoinism, on the other hand, has NO evidence. if you have some, i'd like to see it. i'm not going to hold my breath, though.

 

 

 

The problem is that people are so busy looking for facts that are against creationism, that they don't look for facts that support creationism.
are you seriously suggesting science should go out of its way to find the proof for religion? burden of proof is on the creationists, and they have yet to find any.

 

 

 

The Bible can be used as evidence because it contains stories that our ancestors said they experienced.
this article has a nice breakdown of how genesis is utterly hopeless in reguard to reality. btw, the bible contradicts itself. most stories are presented multiple times. the different versions don't agree. sometimes one version of a story won't even agree with itself. such as Luke's description of the birth story:

 

"Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,"---Matthew 2:1

 

"And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed.([And] this taxing was first made when Quirinius was governor of Syria.)And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn."---- Luke 2:1-7

 

"When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt:

And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son."---Matthew 2:14-15

 

The usual date for Jesus's birth is now typically placed between 7 and 4BCE. This conclusion is based on the fact that the Gospels of Matthew(2:1) and Luke(1:5) both place the birth of Jesus during the reign of Herod the Great' date=' who died in March of 4BCE. In addition, Matthew 2:19-22 shows that the birth occurred at least a few years before Herod's death. Joseph and Mary are reported to have taken the infant Jesus away to Egypt, only to return after Herod's death and during the reign of his son Archelaus. That would place their return to Judea and eventual settlement in Galilee between 4BCE and 6CE.

 

Our major source for this period is the Jewish historian Josephus, who tells us that Archelaus was ultimately deposed in 6CE and Judea was annexed to the province of Syria. Syria was at that point being governed by the proconsul P. Sulpicius Quirinius. This Quiriniius was ordered by the emperor to assess and liquidate the estates of Archelaus and to census the people of Judea for tax purposes. Then a lower-ranking procurator, Coponius, was sent to manage Judea while answering directly to Quirinius. Direct Roman rule had come to Judea for the first time.

 

As long as Herod or one of his heirs was on the throne of Judea, there was no reason to conduct a census. The king alone was responsible for the taxes owed to Rome; how they were collected did not concern the emperor. The census was thus a new impositition in 6CE, a visible sign that Rome was now directly in charge. Josephus tells us that this census was the spark that set off the first wave of anti-Roman rebellion, led by a famous local chieftain named Judas the Galilean. Josephus also identifies this same Judas as the founder of the Zealot movement, which eventually prompted the outbread of the first revolt against Rome some sixty years later (66-70CE). The transition to direct Roman rule that occurred during Jesus's childhood had a rar-reaching impact on the politics as well as the religious climate of Judea for years to come. Both rabbinic Judaism and the emergent Jesus movement were products of this turbulent period.

 

The rebellion led by this Judas the Galilean "in the days of the census" is also mentioned in the New Testiment in Acts 5:37. Yet the same author who wrote both Acts and the Gospel of Luke inexplicably places the birth of Jesus at the time of the census of Quirinius (Luke 2:2), and thus well after the death of Herod.[/quote']

 

I would like to call to your attention the following part of the above passage:

 

Yet the same author who wrote both Acts and the Gospel of Luke inexplicably places the birth of Jesus at the time of the census of Quirinius (Luke 2:2), and thus well after the death of Herod.

 

 

So, the question is, When was Jesus born?

 

 

 

 

They said they had the evidence, so they wrote it down in a book. Isn't that exactly what modern scientists do with their evidence?
scientists actually have evidence. where is this evidence in the bible? btw, your knowledge of how the bible was put togather seems seriously lacking.

 

Just because The Bible is old doesn't mean it can't be true.
did i claim that? it's not just old, it disagrees with history, it disagrees with itself, and it disagrees with the universe itself.

 

 

The problem is that some scientists want to take something that is widely accepted and just say, "This has to be wrong, we need to find another answer."
1)widely accepted by whom?

2)that is not what science does

 

 

A good scientist should say, "Let's investigate the information that is listed in this book and try to prove or disprove them scientifically."
so, should we investigate the gospel of the FSM?

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There are ancient texts older than the Bible, so clearly it is wrong. :)

 

No... I never said the oldest text is correct. I said that if the people who wrote old texts claimed that they witnessed something really happen, we have no reason to deny it until we disprove it scientifically. For example, "The world is flat" has already been disproved, so we have no reason to believe it anymore. However, The Bible has not yet been disproved. Scientists have just managed to create new beliefs without providing any evidence against the existing beliefs.

 

show me this "debatable" evidence you keep speaking of. even if we throw it out, there is more than enough to substantiate evolution(including the fact that we can literally see it happening). creatoinism, on the other hand, has NO evidence. if you have some, i'd like to see it. i'm not going to hold my breath, though.

 

Much of the evidence for evolution can be debated. There is no way you can absolutely prove that humans evolved from apes. The evidence for creationism can also be debated, but you can find it in The Bible. Scientists need to look at both sides to compare the evidence. The evidence in The Bible won't be proven unless scientists decide to stop ignoring it.

 

are you seriously suggesting science should go out of its way to find the proof for religion? burden of proof is on the creationists, and they have yet to find any.

 

Why would the burden of proof be on the creationists? The writers of The Bible claimed that they witnessed certain events happen. These beliefs were widely accepted long before the theory of evolution. Many scientists decide to claim that the writers of The Bible were simply lying, yet they have no way to prove they were lying. How can anyone come up with new beliefs without scientifically disproving the existing ones?

 

the bible contradicts itself.

 

Yes, but it depends on which translation you read. The problem is that it has been translated so many times from the original version. I know it has been written in Hebrew, Latin, Old English, and Modern English. It has probably been translated more times than that.

 

Try finding an online translator web site. Translate a complete sentence from English into Spanish. Now copy that, and translate it back into English. Some of the details in the sentence will probably change, but you should still be able to figure out the meaning behind the sentence.

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