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Dennisg

Where did Darwin get his ideas?

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And there's also something called genetic duplication, where duplicate genetic material is accidentally introduced into chromosomes and then mutates to serve different functions than the original material.

 

First of all, all animals and humans eventually die, the fit as well as the unfit.

 

Secondly, every species breeds defective offspring and in every species the fit offspring can be killed by predators or disease just as well as the unfit. So again, natural selection is a myth.;)

 

Unfortunately, I've studied evolution for probably longer that you've been alive. The difference is that you've blindly bought into it and I've seen both sides of it. So since you aren't capable of looking at evolution objectively, then you're not capable of seeing its flaws even though they're as plain as day. ;)

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First of all, all animals and humans eventually die, the fit as well as the unfit.

No, the fit are immortal.

 

No, seriously. It's all about how many offspring they have.

 

Secondly, every species breeds defective offspring and in every species the fit offspring can be killed by predators or disease just as well as the unfit. So again, natural selection is a myth.;)

Not necessarily. Perhaps "fit" means "has a mutation that makes it harder to spot by predators" or "has immune system better suited to defending against malaria".

 

Unfortunately, I've studied evolution for probably longer that you've been alive. The difference is that you've blindly bought into it and I've seen both sides of it. So since you aren't capable of looking at evolution objectively, then you're not capable of seeing its flaws even though they're as plain as day. ;)

 

And clearly you haven't gotten anything out of it, because you can't even get the basics right. If you read up on the basics of evolution you might be better off.

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And clearly you haven't gotten anything out of it, because you can't even get the basics right. If you read up on the basics of evolution you might be better off.

 

So what you're saying is that evolution does not maintain that humans are the descendants of apes or lower primates. Is that correct? If so, I agree with you 100%. ;)Humans have always come only from humans. So since you claim I'm wrong about what evolution maintains, then you've just denied your whole theory. Sorry. ;)

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So what you're saying is that evolution does not maintain that humans are the descendants of apes or lower primates. Is that correct? If so, I agree with you 100%. ;)Humans have always come only from humans. So since you claim I'm wrong about what evolution maintains, then you've just denied your whole theory. Sorry. ;)

 

Never wrestle with a troll, you both get dirty and the troll likes it.

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Never wrestle with a troll, you both get dirty and the troll likes it.

 

Sorry but that doesn't refute my posts or defend yours which even you know. So since you can't defend evolution without contradicting reality and basic biology, then personal attacks are all you have. So I expect nothing more from you.;)

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knupfer, evolution IS basic biology.

 

if you accept that organisms reproduce and that the offspring are even slightly different to their parents then you must believe in evolution.

 

as i assume you are not a perfect clone of your mum or dad then you are different from them and your children will not be perfect duplicates of you and your wife/husband either.

 

if you accept that then you accept evolution.

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Knufper - Let's see. You think evolution is a delusion. You think that global warming is not impacted by humans, and that it's all a ploy by Al Gore to raise money in different technology sectors. You have yet to supply any proof or evidence of your assertions, and expect everyone to take you seriously...

 

I have to ask...

 

 

Are you a pastor or religious leader somewhere? The parallels are uncanny. :D

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Knufper - Let's see. You think evolution is a delusion. You think that global warming is not impacted by humans, and that it's all a ploy by Al Gore to raise money in different technology sectors. You have yet to supply any proof or evidence of your assertions, and expect everyone to take you seriously...

 

I have to ask...

 

 

Are you a pastor or religious leader somewhere? The parallels are uncanny. :D

 

What scientists miss is the fact that climate has always been cyclic and will continue to be cyclic. In the 70's when we had several cold years, scientists claimed we were going into another ice age. :eyebrow: So all scientists prove is that they really know nothing but instead make money on guessing games that they always change. ;)

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So all scientists prove is that they really know nothing but instead make money on guessing games that they always change. ;)
Trolling infraction issued.

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So what you're saying is that evolution does not maintain that humans are the descendants of apes or lower primates. Is that correct? If so, I agree with you 100%. ;)Humans have always come only from humans. So since you claim I'm wrong about what evolution maintains, then you've just denied your whole theory. Sorry. ;)

 

What I denied was that a human might, say, have a goat child. Evolution is all about gradual change over time, and all your comments about "making goats from humans" are totally invalid because of that. Gradual change is easy -- gradual changes can happen all the time. Giant leaps are indeed nearly impossible.

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The fit and the unfit always co-exist in every species.

Lets talk turtles.

 

On the Islands of Galapagos there are turtles. And they can move from one island to another, although not easily or often (but they can do it).

 

On some islands, there is almost no low bushes (a small amount, but not much), on other islands there are lots of low bushes. This is due to some islands being more drought prone than others. On the drought prone islands small bushes can't store enough water to survive the drought and so die.

 

These turtles are vegetarians. That is they eat bushes.

 

So if both islands start off with the same species of turtle (or turtles from one island move to the other). Then we have two separate populations of turtles (although the same species, and in fact if they moved across, then the parents of one turtle could be on the other island :eek:).

 

Now with the turtles on the dry island with few low bushes, there is just enough food for the turtles to survive. However, if one turtle gets a mutation in their DNA that creates wobbles in the edge of the shell (this might actually be a bad mutation in another place as the turtles might not have as much protection from predators).

 

At first, this wobble is random, but over time, if this wobble occurred in a place that allowed the neck of the turtle to reach up higher, then that turtle would be able to eat the taller bushes and not be restricted to the lower bushes.

 

Now, an animal that doe snot get much to eat will be weak from hunger, but those turtles that can reach the higher bushes will be able to get more food and so not be as hungry and so be more stronger.

 

Now turtles have to fight for a mate, and the stronger turtle gets to mate.

 

Now we have turtles that can't reach the higher bushes and so are weaker because they aren't getting as much to eat, and other turtles with the wobble in the shells edge that allows them to reach up higher and get more food and so not be as weak form hunger.

 

As it is the stronger turtle that mates, then these weak low shelled turtles would loose and the raised shell turtles will.

 

As the trait that causes the ridge is genetic, then these turtles will pass on that trait if the raised shell edge.

 

Because few of the low shelled turtles are breeding, then their offspring will not be represented well in the population.

 

If the high ridged turtles would successfully breed 5 times for every 1 time that the low shelled turtles did, and there is only a finite number of turtles that can live on the island (because of food or simply space) then eventually the population of low shelled turtles will become extinct on the island (because they have been out bred).

 

Now your premise was that the unfit co-exist with the fit. And as this example has shown, they can indeed, for a while. But given enough time and a finite population limit, then eventually the unfit will be out bred by the fit.

 

You see, once the population of low shelled turtles gets down to just a few individuals, then chance events could wipe them out. A predator gets lucky and catches one before it is aware of the predator and so can't protect itself. A drought kills off most of the low bushes and those that do survive are eaten by the more populous high shelled turtles and so the low shelled turtles literally have nothing to eat and so starve to death. Maybe a disease kills off 5% of all turtles on the island and all the low shelled turtles just happened to be effected. Or maybe none of the low shelled turtles breed with each other (they only bred with the high shelled turtles) and all offspring happen to be high shelled.

 

And so the short shelled turtles on the second island disappear and the only turtles left are the high shelled turtles.

 

This completely contradicts you statement that they always co-exist.

 

But lets also look at the numbers.

 

A turtle might lay around 12 eggs in each batch each year. They might be sexually active for 100 years and take 20 years to mature. That means that a turtle lays around 1200 eggs in their life.

 

If we start with a population of 1000 turtles, then these would have a combined number of offspring of 1,200,000.

 

However, we don't see those number of turtles on the Galapagos islands. We see far less. This means that the vast majority of the turtles have to have died.

 

How many?

 

Well for the population to remain stable (that is we don't end up seeing millions of turtles, or that they go extinct), then for every breeding pair, we need to have only 2 turtles survive to breed (some might be more, some might be less, this is just an average).

 

But a Turtle can lay up to 1200 eggs in their life time. That means 1198 turtles must die for every two turtles that you see alive. :eek:

 

That's a lot of dead turtles.

 

But the big question is, is it pure random chance that a turtle dies or lives, or is there some factor that is not random, but has some influence?

 

Well we know that turtle shells protect them from predators. And that some shell designs are worse than others (eg: if it curved upwards instead of downwards). And that the shell is the result of the turtles genetic code.

 

As the design of the shell is a non random factor that determines whether a turtle is more or less vulnerable to a predator, and the shell is a trait that is inherited (encoded in its genes), then shell designs that make the turtle more vulnerable to a predator will result in more of those turtles being killed than the turtles that have shells that protect them better.

 

ANY inheritable factor that give a non random change of increased survival will result in that trait becoming more prevalent in a finite population.

 

We don't have to wait millions of year to see this either:

 

Cane Toads were introduced into Australia in 1935.

 

In the years since their introduction they ahve spread quite rapidly throughout the Australian North East.

 

There is an inheritable variation in the lengths of their legs (ie if the parents have longer legs, the the offspring will have longer legs).

 

The longer the Legs of the Toads, the faster they can move.

 

If Cane Toads already occupy an area, then it is difficult for new arrivals to get enough food to survive or stake a breeding territory, this results in new arrivals not getting to breed as often.

 

Any offspring of the cane toads (whether short or long legged) will find it easier to find food and breeding territories at the edges of the established zone (this is what is driving their progress through Australia).

 

The toads have a distinct breeding season.

 

Lets put this together.

 

Because the toads have a distinct breeding season, then those that breed early will give their offspring an advantage over other toads as they will be able to grow into adults first and so successfully establish territories in the outskirts of the established zone before any other toads.

 

However, this trait will have spred long ago to all the toad populations as it is not something specific to the situation in Australia. But I need to state it as it puts the next bit into context.

 

The length of a toad's legs dictate how fast it can move. The longer the legs, the faster it can move. So those toads will longer legs will get to new territory and establish breeding sites first, preventing the shorter legged toads from getting many breeding sites (and so stop them breeding and passing on their short legged trait).

 

Over the years, this situation will repeat itself with each new generation, with the toads that have the longer legs passing on their trait of long leggedness to their offspring.

 

Prediction: Toads on the outskirts of the zone inhabited by the Cane Toad will have longer legs.

 

It has only been 73 years. This is within one persons life time.

 

If the Fit can co-exist with the Unfit, then we should see similar number of long legged and short legged cane toads where ever we look in the inhabited zone.

 

However, if you are wrong, and the Fit out competes the Unfit and there really is such a thing as Natural Selection, then my prediction (that you will find more toads with long legs in the outskirts of the inhabited zone) will occur.

 

More so, I will go one further and really go out on a limb here. IF evolution is correct, then not only will you get the longer legged (on average) toads on the outskirts of the inhabited area, but you will also get an increase in average leg size the further out from the point of introduction. That you will be able to chart their progress by looking at average leg sizes.

 

Well guess what. Toads on the outskirts of inhabited zone have significantly longer legs than the ones where they were introduced, and that there is a definite increase in size of cane toads legs the further away from the point of introduction.

 

This occurs ONLY if there is natural selection.

 

Natural Selection DOES occur. :cool:

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You're right. This little semantic word game you're playing is not wrong. Science cannot tell us that a "super natural cosmic dictator" is not required. However, the theory in existence that has ZERO inclusion of a supernatural entitiy still works as well as can be. It does not include the assumption of the supernatural, yet it performs majestically.

 

Leaving aside your ad hominem agaist deity ("dictator"), your statement about "zero inclusion ... still works as well as can be" is wrong. Deity is neither included nor excluded. And we don't know that the theory will work in the absence of deity. That's the point. All we know is that deity would not need an additional material cause for the origin of species, i.e., direct manufacture.

 

Adding the part you did which implies that a supernatural cosmic dictator might be involved does nothing for us beyond semantic correctness, and offers seemingly nothing to an already robust theory.

 

It is required for the integrity of science. You miss the point. Creationism/ID runs into trouble not because it explicitly talks about deity, but because it offers an alternative material cause by which deity works. It's the material cause in creationism/ID that we reject, not the inclusion of deity.

 

Now, if we have actually found the material method by which deity works, then of course we won't need to add to that material method. The material method will be sufficient as a material method. The issue is whether the material method is sufficient as the total cause. But at that point we leave science and get into matters of faith.

 

What I'm trying to do is keep you from injecting faith into science.

 

In my view, the inclusion of such a "god possibility" only offers solice to the mentally handicapped people who are still struggling to reconcile their belief in god and their Iron Age fairy tales with their empirical knowledge of the natural universe.

 

Unfortunately, those "mentally handicapped" people include Darwin at the time he wrote Origin of Species, Asa Gray, Woolcott, Theodosius Dobzhansky, Francisco Ayala, and at least half of all evolutionary biologists. It's a wonder, isn't it, how such "mentally handicapped" people could come up with the evidence and theory that you say "performs majestically"?

 

What we have here is you injecting your own faith views into science. And look at the effect: you undermine the very theory you are trying to promote! That's what I'm trying to do here: get you to acknowledge the limitations of science in order to preserve the integrity of science. An integrity that you are threatening by trying to overlay your own faith onto science.

 

If Newton had devised a theory of Gravity that was partly wrong and as a result 100 million people lost their lives – then Newton would be responsible.

 

Let's take this out of science. Jesus founded a religion that has resulted in the deaths of far more than 100 million people. Is Jesus responsible? Or are the people who misinterpreted his teachings responsible?

 

The “Evolutionary” ideas of survival of the fittest and chance have indeed led to the loss of at least 100 million lives.

 

First, these are not "evolutionary ideas". The "survival of the fittest" used by Social Darwinists was NOT what Darwin stated.

 

Second, what we have here is are people warping evolution for their own ends. You say:

 

they can’t be blamed to what they got wrong about evolution. Frankly this kind of reasoning disgusts me.

 

Evolutionary biologists did not get anything wrong about evolution. Natural selection does happen. However, some people got evolution wrong and then misused it. How can evolutionary biologists be responsible for that? Is Madame Curie responsible for dropping the atom bomb on Hiroshima because she discovered radioactive decay?

 

First of all, all animals and humans eventually die, the fit as well as the unfit.

 

But in the meantime, the fit will live longer and have more offspring than the unfit. Yes, the fit may die, but the unfit die quicker.

 

Secondly, every species breeds defective offspring and in every species the fit offspring can be killed by predators or disease just as well as the unfit. So again, natural selection is a myth.

 

Yes, there can be non-fitness related mortality. Your non-sequitor is that this negates natural selection. Remember, avoiding predators and being resistant to disease is part of being "fit". Now, an individual that is resistant to disease may be killed by a predator and vice versa, but even if 90% of the mortality is non-selective, the equations of population genetics is clear that the selective allele will still become fixed in the population.

 

Unfortunately, I've studied evolution for probably longer that you've been alive.

 

Judging from the error you made above, I sincerely doubt you have read any evolutionary biology textbook or papers. That kind of error, tho, is often seen in creationist literature. I hypothesize that your "studying" has been reading the misinformation put out by creationists.

 

When and how have we disproved the existence of fairies, unicorns, dragons, and leprechauns?

 

 

First, you asserted that we can disprove their existence, then you said flatly that they don't exist. Which is it?

 

If we've disproved their existence, then they don't exist. Simple logic.

 

For the first 3 they are material creatures that are said to inhabit particular geographical regions. We have searched those geographical areas and the creatures are not there. It is the same way we would disprove the couch in my living room. Search the entire living room and no couch. In many cases, it's not possible to search all the search space, but for those 3 it has been done.

 

Leprechauns are said to be able to become invisible. However, an essential characteristic of leprechauns is that they have pots of gold at the end of rainbows. Well, many, many people have now been at the end of rainbows and never a pot of gold there. That falsifies leprechauns.

 

Now, you can modify all 4 of these so that you can make them unfalsifiable by adding ad hoc hypotheses. But then, you can modify and and every scientific theory with ad hoc hypotheses to avoid falsification. In order for an ad hoc hypothesis to be valid, it must be able to be tested independently of the hypothesis it is saving.

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if you accept that organisms reproduce and that the offspring are even slightly different to their parents then you must believe in evolution.

 

Careful not to oversimplify things here. Mendelian genetics is not the same as evolution -- the only new thing there is the arrangement of pre-existing genetic information.

 

However, each new human has about 20 mutations. If you believe in mutations, then evolution is the inevitable conclusion.

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Since evolutionists don't know from which creature man descended because the so-called "common ancestor" is still as imaginary as he's always been,

 

Actually, we do know the last 3 species humans descended from. Going back in time it is H. erectus, then H. habilis, then A. afarensis. There are transitional individuals linking each species with the one that came after.

 

So, when you limited the discussion to "common ancestor" you made a strawman.

 

Either way, calling a human an ape doesn't make it possible for apes to breed human descendants.

 

Not in a single generation. But then, evolution doesn't talk about single generations but rather hundreds/thousands of generations over which a population changes to a new species. Your claim about studying evolution is looking more and more false.

 

Nevertheless, if you want to call a human an ape, then what you're actually saying is that humans have always come only from humans as creationists have always known.

 

"Apes" are a Family of many genera and species. And not all those species are H. sapiens, are they? For instance, no creationist calls A. afarensis a "human". Yet A. afarensis is our direct ancestor.

 

i heard he got em from a monkey. i could be wrong.

 

You are wrong. Darwin's notes documenting how the idea of evolution developed are public knowledge. Read them. Then you won't come up with such silly and juvenile statements.

 

Natural selection is a myth. The fit and the unfit always co-exist in every species. Mating and breeding is what passes along genes to offspring, not environment or adaptation.

 

But the fit will have more offspring than the unfit -- because they will live longer and thus be able to reproduce more over time. Also, the offspring of the unfit will produce less, also being unfit. Over the course of generations, this difference in reproduction will mean that the alleles of the unfit will disappear from the population and the alleles of the fit will be in every member of the population (fixed). Thus the genetic makeup of the population changes.

 

Environment sets the design problem. Adaptation is the resulting design to solve the design problem.

 

Here is natural selection as Darwin summarized it. Notice that it is a deductive argument. If the premises are true, then the conclusion is true. So, can you argue the truth of the premises? Can you somehow argue that the conclusion does not follow from the premises? Let's see you try:

 

"If, during the long course of ages and under varying conditions of life, organic beings vary at all in the several parts of their organization, and I think this cannot be disputed; if there be, owing to the high geometric powers of increase of each species, at some age, season, or year, a severe struggle for life, and this certainly cannot be disputed; then, considering the infinite complexity of the relations of all organic beings to each other and to their conditions of existence, causing an infinite diversity in structure, constitution, and habits, to be advantageous to them, I think it would be a most extraordinary fact if no variation ever had occurred useful to each beings welfare, in the same way as so many variations have occured useful to man. But if variations useful to any organic being do occur, assuredly individuals thus characterized will have the best chance of being preserved in the struggle for life; and from the strong principle of inheritance they will tend to produce offspring similarly characterized. This principle of preservation, I have called, for the sake of brevity, Natural Selection." [Origin, p 127 6th ed.]

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Careful not to oversimplify things here. Mendelian genetics is not the same as evolution -- the only new thing there is the arrangement of pre-existing genetic information.

 

However, each new human has about 20 mutations. If you believe in mutations, then evolution is the inevitable conclusion.

 

yes i suppose that would be better, my point was imperfect copying though

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Leaving aside your ad hominem agaist deity ("dictator"), your statement about "zero inclusion ... still works as well as can be" is wrong. Deity is neither included nor excluded.

Ermm... I said it works without deity being included, and you told me that I was wrong because a deity is neither included nor excluded.

 

Care to explain that one?

 

ME: Deity is not included.

YOU: You're wrong. Deity is not included or excluded.

 

 

Pendantic, much?

 

 

 

Now, if we have actually found the material method by which deity works, then of course we won't need to add to that material method. The material method will be sufficient as a material method. The issue is whether the material method is sufficient as the total cause. But at that point we leave science and get into matters of faith.

I couldn't agree more, and your last sentence there is exactly my point. Where's the problem again?

 

 

 

Unfortunately, those "mentally handicapped" people include Darwin at the time he wrote Origin of Species, Asa Gray, Woolcott, Theodosius Dobzhansky, Francisco Ayala, and at least half of all evolutionary biologists. It's a wonder, isn't it, how such "mentally handicapped" people could come up with the evidence and theory that you say "performs majestically"?

Probably because they left their theism out of it, but that's just my guess.

 

 

infinitenow-albums-profile-album-picture800-atheismposter.jpg

 

 

 

If we've disproved their existence, then they don't exist. Simple logic.

Right. Again, what references will you be sharing that show we've disproved the existence of fairies, unicorns, dragons, and leprechauns?

 

You seem to be talking out of both sides of your mouth, and I know you are not the type to do this intentionally, so I ask you to please support your position that these things were somehow disproved, and are hence different than god.

 

 

Frankly, all of the reasons you cited for the disproof of fairies, unicorns, and lephrechauns apply equally to your assumed deity.

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If we've disproved their existence, then they don't exist. Simple logic.

 

For the first 3 they are material creatures that are said to inhabit particular geographical regions. We have searched those geographical areas and the creatures are not there. It is the same way we would disprove the couch in my living room. Search the entire living room and no couch. In many cases, it's not possible to search all the search space, but for those 3 it has been done.

 

Leprechauns are said to be able to become invisible. However, an essential characteristic of leprechauns is that they have pots of gold at the end of rainbows. Well, many, many people have now been at the end of rainbows and never a pot of gold there. That falsifies leprechauns.

 

Now, you can modify all 4 of these so that you can make them unfalsifiable by adding ad hoc hypotheses. But then, you can modify and and every scientific theory with ad hoc hypotheses to avoid falsification. In order for an ad hoc hypothesis to be valid, it must be able to be tested independently of the hypothesis it is saving.

 

I essentially agree with this explanation, but I think you're actually agreeing with iNow more than you realize, or at least demonstrating his point (or the point he should be making, anyway) for him. Your description of falsifying the existence of leprechauns, rather than contrasting with religious arguments, to me seems entirely parallel. Some conceptions of "leprechaun" are falsifiable in the way you describe, and some others (like the invisible kind) are not. You attribute this to adding ad hoc hypotheses, which is partly true, but really it's just a pointless exercise from the beginning, due to poorly defined terms. The question, "do leprechauns exist," does not have meaning, because "leprechaun" is inadequately defined.

 

You probably see where I'm going with this and perhaps you agree with me already, but I'll spell it out anyway. The question, "does God exist," is not just unfalsifiable, but almost completely without meaning. This is simply because the word "God," without further elaboration or specificity, is an empty term, to a far greater degree even than "leprechaun." You need to specify a particular, coherent concept, just as with leprechauns. And as with leprechauns, some "Gods" are falsifiable (of which a subset have been falsified), some are not (the "clockmaker", the "trickster") and some just cognitively empty words ("the essence of infinite perfection"). Some are even demonstrably true, as with those defining "God" as "an order to the universe" or some such. So saying "God is neither included nor excluded" is not saying anything whatsoever. However, the God described in the literal words of the Bible, the one the Creationists worship, is falsifiable, and I'm sure you'll agree has been falsified to as great a degree as the more falsifiable breeds of leprechaun.

 

That particular God and ones similar to it were among the first worshiped, and up until relatively recently they were worshiped almost exclusively. And yet, though the falsifications have been largely accepted (with some exceptions, clearly), belief in "God" remains prevalent. Why? Because of the "ad hoc hypotheses." Essentially, to continue the analogy, instead of giving up on leprechauns when they can't be found around Irish rainbows, we've decided they must be invisible. And instead of giving up on the truth of the Bible when facts contrary to it are demonstrated, we decide it must be allegorical, merely "divinely inspired," and evolution is "the means by which He creates." Can it be proved wrong? No. But you have to understand that for someone who claims no such belief (be it an atheist, an agnostic, an ignostic, or simply an adherent of a different religion), this shifting seems no different than changing the definition of "leprechaun" such that it still might exist, and then - incredibly - still believing in it. It might not at any point become a logical absurdity, but it still seems contrary to the way reasonable humans approach all other questions.

 

Luckily, this process doesn't really interfere with other questions, which is why brilliant scientists can be and often are also religious. As long as you keep twisting your religion to fit the facts instead of twisting the facts to fit into your religion, it shouldn't hamper significantly hamper any scientific inquiry.

Edited by Sisyphus
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Definitions are supremely important. That is one reason scientists like math so much, the terms are well defined and consistent from one person to the next. A leprechaun is not defined by a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow so not finding that pot is not going to disprove the existence of leprechauns. Leprechauns (like God) can be defined in such a way as to be unfalsifiable with 100% certainty. Yes we can show that nobody has ever found a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow and that no other creature on earth can turn invisible and therefore deduce that Leprechauns are highly unlikely to exist but those alone do not make it impossible, just seemingly impossible. As has been mentioned on this forum more than once, it is very difficult if not impossible to prove a negative. Likewise, I can make up a definition for a word that fits reality, such as saying a leprechauns are no more than an Irishmen in a green suits and funny looking hats (not the standard definition I am aware), but something I have seen with my own eyes. The same can be said for "god". If I simply define "god" as "anything greater than myself" who would have enough hubris to claim to be an athiest? Back to the topic at hand, I think Darwin got his ideas from finches and moths.

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I The question, "do leprechauns exist," does not have meaning, because "leprechaun" is inadequately defined.

 

From the beginning, leprechauns were said to be invisible. Therefore invisibility was not an ad hoc hypothesis. Fairies, unicorns, and dragons never had the characteristic of invisibility. So introducing invisibility after the falsification becomes an ad hoc hypothesis.

 

The question, "does God exist," is not just unfalsifiable, but almost completely without meaning. This is simply because the word "God," without further elaboration or specificity, is an empty term, to a far greater degree even than "leprechaun."

 

Leprechaun was never an empty term. Neither is deity. Certainly "God" as generally taken to refer to the deity of Judeo-Christianity was never an empty term.

 

We don't need precise definitions in order for words to have meaning. Since we are in the "evolution" section, you must know that "species" has no precise, specific definition that works all the time. Yet the term is not without meaning.

 

And as with leprechauns, some "Gods" are falsifiable (of which a subset have been falsified), some are not (the "clockmaker", the "trickster") and some just cognitively empty words ("the essence of infinite perfection"). Some are even demonstrably true, as with those defining "God" as "an order to the universe" or some such. So saying "God is neither included nor excluded" is not saying anything whatsoever.

 

In this case you are making a semantic quibble. Within the context of the discussion, "God" meant Yahweh or a close proximity of the monotheistic deity of Judeo-Christianity and Islam.

 

Overarching theories like evolution come in essential statements and auxiliary hypotheses. In evolution, one of the essential statements is "descent with modification". But there are/were many versions of evolution, particularly depending on the mechanism of modification. Many of them have been falsified (such as Lamarckism), some are still being argued. Deity or God works the same way: there are some essential statements and lots of auxiliary hypotheses. Therefore different versions of deity have been falsified. Notice who did the falsifying. Not atheists. Theists. You might want to look into how they did that to see if you can use the same technique on the versions not falsified.

 

However, the God described in the literal words of the Bible, the one the Creationists worship, is falsifiable, and I'm sure you'll agree has been falsified to as great a degree as the more falsifiable breeds of leprechaun.

 

Here you make the same logical error as the creationists. God (or better Yahweh) has not been falsified. Rather the mechanism of creation has been falsified. What got falsified was that particular interpretation of the Bible. IOW, the literal interpretation of those passages was falsified. What you have done is tied that to the existence of Yahweh and whether Yahweh created. That is faulty logic. You have 2 separate issues:

1. Whether Yahweh exists and created the universe.

2. How Yahweh created the universe.

 

I can see why you would want to make that error; it's the only way you can falsify Yahweh. But that doesn't change that it is an error.

 

That particular God and ones similar to it were among the first worshiped, and up until relatively recently they were worshiped almost exclusively.

 

Actually, no. The belief in a literal Bible is recent. It arose in the late 1800s as a response to Higher Criticism and evolution. It was codified in the series of pamphlets called "The Fundamentals" published between 1900 and 1910. They are online and if you want to look at them I can give you the link. This was the birth of a new religion. The god of this religion was not Yahweh, even tho the worshippers say they are "Christian". Instead, the god is the literal interpretation of the Bible. In terms of Judeo-Christianity, the god is a false idol.

 

Before Fundamentalism, Genesis was not taken literally. Look at the writings of St. Augustine and John Calvin, among others. Martin Luther was an exception, not the rule. The two foundational creeds of Christianity -- Nicean and Apostle's -- only assert that God created; they do not specify a how. In addition, Christianity has always had a tradition of "two books". Yahweh has 2 books: the Bible and Creation. The tradition has it that people learn from both books and that Creation can inform interpretation of scripture.

 

Even if you look at Genesis and read it literally, you quickly see that there are two creation stories that contradict. That means that neither one could have been intended literally. What's more, the Bible has it in several locations that Yahweh sustains the universe. The idea of secondary causes was in place long before modern science.

 

Because of the "ad hoc hypotheses."

 

Ad hoc hypotheses must be posted after the falsification. But Judeo-Christianity had the hypotheses in place before the falsifications. What you, and Fundamentalists, have done is to be ignorant of Judeo-Christian theology and history.

 

Essentially, to continue the analogy, instead of giving up on leprechauns when they can't be found around Irish rainbows, we've decided they must be invisible.

 

This is your mistake. Go back and read what I wrote:

" Leprechauns are said to be able to become invisible. However, an essential characteristic of leprechauns is that they have pots of gold at the end of rainbows." Invisibility preceded falsification by rainbows. You started out with an error and therefore continued on an erroneous path.

 

And instead of giving up on the truth of the Bible when facts contrary to it are demonstrated, we decide it must be allegorical, merely "divinely inspired," and evolution is "the means by which He creates." Can it be proved wrong? No.

 

It was hypothesized that Genesis 2 was allegory and that the Bible was "merely divinely inspired" long before modern science found the means to fasify a literal interpretation. Actually, the "inspired" but not inerrant was present in the Bible itself. See Mark 10 and Matthew 14.

 

Remember, theists have decided that facts have falsified different versions of deity. The fact that people climbed Mt. Olympus and didn't find Zeus and company was a falsification of the Greek pantheon. So, if theists are honest enough to let facts falsify versions of deity, then why would you think they were not honest enough to falsify Yahweh if that were the case?

 

Definitions are supremely important. That is one reason scientists like math so much, the terms are well defined and consistent from one person to the next. A leprechaun is not defined by a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow so not finding that pot is not going to disprove the existence of leprechauns.

 

In all the legends, having a pot of god at the end of the rainbow is an essential characteristic of leprechauns. Just like delivering toys to all the world's children is an essential characteristic of Santa Claus. So falsifiying the delivery of toys falsifies SC.

 

Now, I submit that creating the universe is an essential characteristic of deity. If ekpyrotic theory turns out to be correct, deity would be falsified.

 

Leprechauns (like God) can be defined in such a way as to be unfalsifiable with 100% certainty.

 

This is the ad hoc hypothesis I was talking about. Yes, you can change the hypothesis/statement/definition after falsification so that falsification is avoided. However, this is not valid unless the change is such as to be independently testable from the hypothesis it is designed to save.

 

Yes we can show that nobody has ever found a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow and that no other creature on earth can turn invisible and therefore deduce that Leprechauns are highly unlikely to exist but those alone do not make it impossible, just seemingly impossible. As has been mentioned on this forum more than once, it is very difficult if not impossible to prove a negative.

 

Proving a negative is what science does all the time. C'mon, this is a science forum. People should know how science works. And our stock in trade is falsification -- proving negatives. The earth is not flat. Any doubt that negative has been proved?

 

So, the original hypothesis of leprechaun was that every rainbow had a pot of gold at the end. Finding several rainbows without pots of gold falsify leprechauns. Now, you can now make the ad hoc hypothesis that only a few rainbows have pots of gold. But how is that independently testable? It's not. It's only effect is to save leprachauns from falsification. Therefore it's an invalid ad hoc hypothesis.

 

Theists in 1830-1850 pointed to the bad designs in plants and animals as falsification of Special Creation/ID. Theists at the time accepted the falsification of Special Creation/ID. Modern day creationists have introduced the ad hoc hypothesis that the bad designs are due to the effect of "sin" on Creation. Within the designs, this is not independently testable because there is independent test for "sin" among designs. (However, there is an independent test in literal scripture in Genesis 3 where the punishment for "sin" is laid out and is very limited.)

 

The same can be said for "god". If I simply define "god" as "anything greater than myself" who would have enough hubris to claim to be an athiest?

 

Strawman. That's not the definition we are working with.

 

Back to the topic at hand, I think Darwin got his ideas from finches and moths.

 

You don't have to "think" and throw out an off-hand opinion. Darwin's notebooks have been published and you can go look to see where the ideas came from. He wrote it all down.

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Leprechaun was never an empty term. Neither is deity. Certainly "God" as generally taken to refer to the deity of Judeo-Christianity was never an empty term.

 

We don't need precise definitions in order for words to have meaning.

Nobody here is talking about meaning. What exactly is the definition?

 

 

In this case you are making a semantic quibble. Within the context of the discussion, "God" meant Yahweh or a close proximity of the monotheistic deity of Judeo-Christianity and Islam.

Right, and how is that defined, exactly?

 

 

Strawman. That's not the definition we are working with.

Right, and what was that definition again?

Edited by iNow
multiple post merged

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I think that why creationist “science” will fail is that it cant reach being a science. In simple terms I think, how could they ever prove, via an empirical physical mechanism throughly tested for something that could prove anything dealing with a creator period? That is what I put forward. I mean when people study evolution or ecology, they are looking for demonstrative, physical, and empirical means, how do you fit any of those variables with being a unit of creator for instance? I mean what would that look like in some math, would you have unit C for creator with some exponent on it? That part I think surely will always lack. Instead what you will have is pirates causing global warming when you get down to it.

 

Evolution does not say there is some higher thing nor does it deny it. What the conflict is to me is that some aspects of religion just cant accept being wrong on some level, really. What other point could there be? If all views of relgiion are to be accepted then no version of it holds any real validity over another, this does not exist though of course in reality. We dont have that peaceful kind of world, we have a brutal one where people get burnt on the stake. So without much more of a pause, all evolution deals with scientifically is the science of evolution, it is not concerned with the validity of some particular cultures status and the one true sky god or something.

 

Lastly creation science is always built on god of the gaps. Heck with all the rapid change in biology, thanks to understanding it via science, I am sure that fact we are even discovering stuff will be used as to some ammo for a creationist argument to prove the gap exists. This is painful, tedious and a waste of time generally speaking because such a cause has made arguments that warm days are a placebo effect, and surely entropy blah and etc...

 

I have crackpot ideas that hold up just as well, they just don't happen to have as many votes, science is still lacking in both of them completely though. So that is it, creation science will never be a science because I don't know how you would make some empirical unit of the lord, whatever that may be or is or is not.

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lucaspa:

"You don't have to "think" and throw out an off-hand opinion. Darwin's notebooks have been published and you can go look to see where the ideas came from. He wrote it all down."

 

 

I am not sure what you mean by this. It has been about 25 years since reading nearly the body of Charles Darwin's work, so I could be wrong. Are you telling me that he didn't arrive at the conclusion his ideas were correct from observation of moths and finches (at least in part) or that you would just rather I didn't take part in the discussion?

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I don't really want to have a religious argument, because they're inherently pointless and against forum rules besides. What I was actually trying to do with post #118 was diffuse the argument already under way by (I thought) non-confrontationally explaining my point of view in such a way that different sides could at least understand. As I'm at least satisfied that anyone who wants to understand what I was talking about would be able to, I'm just going to drop it, and I strongly suggest you (iNow, lucaspa, etc.) do the same. Don't worry about getting the last word.

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Don't worry about getting the last word.

Aww... Come on... Just 5 minutes. Pleeeaaazzzzee!

 

You did make a good post. I concede that. I just took issue with the response it received, and also how my questions are going ignored. I don't think it's about "getting the last word," but I agree with your point that it's time to terminate this where it stands.

 

 

 

Lucaspa - Do you also agree with that, and that we can move away from this exchange, moving back into the vast arena of subjects on which we whole-heartedly agree?

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