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Who created us?

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Clydey
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #45 on: May 17, 2008, 09:50 PM »
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A few points I thought of as i read this topic just now: firstly, I thought Mark's point that its possible to combine the belief in god with a belief in scientific theories, an extremely good point, and actually one i believe in. Secondly, anyone who says evolution or the big bang is fact, obviously hasn't investigated the subject properly, since that so isn't true! Their are so many questions on both theories, so many respected scientists who disagree with one or both of those theories, that its silly to call it fact. Thirdly, there is a huge amount of literature investigating the bible, both Jewish and Christian, which can explain many or all of the difficulties there, so its naive to say that its impossible to believ the bible if you go into it.


Evolution is a fact.  Ignorance of the subject does not mean that it's not a fact.

Shall I provide proof?  How about the Dover trial?  A Republican judge was appointed by George Bush to preside over an Evolution vs. Intelligent Design hearing.  Intelligent Design was torn to shreds, not only by the evolution side but also by the religious, right wing judge.

By all means ask whatever questions you have, but do not make bold assertions about a subject you clearly know little about.  I'm not trying to be nasty or dogmatic, but people's ignorance of the theory of evolution is something that tests the patience of empirically-minded people.  If you live and breathe science, as I do, you would understand my and other people's frustration.

It is a fact that we evolved.  That much is almost unanimously accepted within the scientific community.  Only a few religious scientists challenge it.  The main argument is whether natural selection is the only mechanism through which we evolved.

Little within biology makes sense except in light of evolution.  If you have questions, by all means ask them.  I'll be happy to answer and I'll satisfy anything you feel challenges evolutionary theory.  See my post to AL, below, if you want clarification on the theory/fact misconception.
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thomasredlegs
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #46 on: May 17, 2008, 09:56 PM »
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I am wondering what your background is, re this topic?
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Clydey
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #47 on: May 17, 2008, 09:59 PM »
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But that is all it is a theory it is not fact, once the theory is questioned with an opposing theory it is debated and on the balance of opinion one becomes accepted. It is not conclusive proof that it is actually what took place, just the best explanation of what might have happened at that point in time.

An example of this is with Stephen Hawking when he originally released his research it was accepted by the scientific community, however the dissenting voice of Perskill would not accept his work on the information leaking from a black hole. Hawking was later to accept he was wrong and changed to Perskills version.

So who is to say that the Big Bang theory in which you place your trust will be solid in the future?

Is it not extremely arrogant to say that anyone who disagrees with it is wrong?



AL, you are making a common error.  You have confused the colloquial definition of "theory" with the scientific definition of a "theory".

A scientific theory is a large body of evidence that has withstood empirical analysis.  Something like evolution, which has not only withstood testing for over 100 years but has predicted certain things that would corroborate that theory, is an extremely strong theory.  It is as certain as gravity.  Facts are what we explain using scientific theories.  They are not nearly as powerful in science as they are in popular culture.  See these websites.

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/evolution-fact.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_as_theory_and_fact

http://www.actionbioscience.org/evolution/lenski.html

I could go on and on and on.  It is a fact that we evolved.

The big bang theory is not as solid as evolution.  It is a good, widely supported theory.  It can not yet be considered as strong as evolution or gravity, for example.

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Clydey
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #48 on: May 17, 2008, 10:02 PM »
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I am wondering what your background is, re this topic?


A keen interest mostly.  I'm going for my honours in social science, which includes a module on religion and society.  I've been interested in biology for years, however.  My opinions aren't the result of a night reading a few web pages.  I've studied the subject extensively.
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thomasredlegs
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #49 on: May 17, 2008, 10:03 PM »
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A keen interest mostly.  I'm going for my honours in social science, which includes a module on religion and society.  I've been interested in biology for years, however.  My opinions aren't the result of a night reading a few web pages.  I've studied the subject extensively.


I did not for one second think your opinions were the result of reading a few web pages, that's why I asked.
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Granny
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #50 on: May 17, 2008, 10:04 PM »
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Those that argue between science and religion are missing the whole point.  There is no problem between science and religion.  One explains what is, and the other explains why.
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Mark
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #51 on: May 17, 2008, 10:08 PM »
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Those that argue between science and religion are missing the whole point.  There is no problem between science and religion.  One explains what is, and the other explains why.
This goes back to my point that both God and these theories can often co-exist. Smile
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Clydey
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #52 on: May 17, 2008, 10:08 PM »
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A few points I thought of as i read this topic just now: firstly, I thought Mark's point that its possible to combine the belief in god with a belief in scientific theories, an extremely good point, and actually one i believe in. Secondly, anyone who says evolution or the big bang is fact, obviously hasn't investigated the subject properly, since that so isn't true! Their are so many questions on both theories, so many respected scientists who disagree with one or both of those theories, that its silly to call it fact. Thirdly, there is a huge amount of literature investigating the bible, both Jewish and Christian, which can explain many or all of the difficulties there, so its naive to say that its impossible to believ the bible if you go into it.


As to why science and religion are not compatible, that much is obvious from reading the bible.

Genesis, for example, does not fit with science.  Evolutionary biology makes a mockery of it.  The story of Moses has been debunked by historians, as has the ridiculous idea of Noah's Ark.

It's too easy to say that those stories are not to be taken literally.  How do you know what is to be taken literally and what is not?  The rule seems to be:  if it has been disproved, it's symbolic; if it hasn't, it's literal.

People cannot have it both ways.  If the bible is the inerrant word of of God, why don't you kill your neighbour for working in the sabbath?  Why don't you agree with slavery?  Again, I could go on.  It's not reasonable to take some of it literally and write off the rest as being mere tales to guide us.  That's just a convenience.
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Clydey
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #53 on: May 17, 2008, 10:09 PM »
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I did not for one second think your opinions were the result of reading a few web pages, that's why I asked.


I was just clarifying.  Sorry, I didn't intend to second guess your intentions.
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Clydey
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #54 on: May 17, 2008, 10:11 PM »
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Those that argue between science and religion are missing the whole point.  There is no problem between science and religion.  One explains what is, and the other explains why.


Could you elaborate?

I'm sorry, but religion does neither.  If you'll indulge me, give me an example of religion's epistemological relevance?
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Granny
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #55 on: May 17, 2008, 10:11 PM »
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It seems to me, Clydey, that you need to undertake a serious study of the Bible.  The Bible is not one book, it is made up of many books: some are history, some are fable, some are poetry and so on.  You need to understand the history behind the writing of each of the individual books before you can make any judgement on them.
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Clydey
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #56 on: May 17, 2008, 10:14 PM »
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This goes back to my point that both God and these theories can often co-exist. Smile


Yes, some parts of the bible can co-exist with science.  The book is huge.  It's not realistic to think that science can debunk every word of it immediately.  The story of creation cannot.

You've all heard of the Virgin Mary.  People talk about the immaculate conception and pray to the "Virgin" Mary.  What many don't know is that there was a mistranslation.

I believe the correct translation is "young woman", not "virgin".  That's just one example of how fairytales can grow and become ingrained in our culture.  
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Clydey
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #57 on: May 17, 2008, 10:17 PM »
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It seems to me, Clydey, that you need to undertake a serious study of the Bible.  The Bible is not one book, it is made up of many books: some are history, some are fable, some are poetry and so on.  You need to understand the history behind the writing of each of the individual books before you can make any judgement on them.


I know it is many books.  That's why I referred to the book of Genesis.  How do you know what is historical and what is not?  No one agrees what is what.  If they did, creationists wouldn't exist.  Where in the bible does it distinguish between fact and fable?
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Yamor
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #58 on: May 17, 2008, 10:22 PM »
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Clydey, its not true what you say about evolution. It might be agreed that the methods of evolution could happen and maybe are constantly happening, but the theory that that it all started from one cell etc, is not agreed to by many scientists. There was actually a poll of scientists in the 90's, and a majority did not believe evolution is the answer. It is a commonly accepted fact that evolution is given more credence by the masses then it should be. I'll try to find some references to what I say, but it'll be quite difficult, since i don't have access to a computer at this time.
Concerning the bible, there are explanations for any questions you could ask, which are accepted by millions, rome a lot cleverer and more knowledgeable then you. So don't be so arrogant to suggest that they're definitely rubbish, like I don't say your beliefs are definitely rubbish.
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Granny
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Re: Who created us? « Reply #59 on: May 17, 2008, 10:26 PM »
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As I said before, the Bible is not one book, it is many.  There were many other books that were not included in the final version.  There is no synopsis of the whole work, as it would simply not make sense - these books were written over a period of thousands of years.
Most theologians these days regard the first chapters of Genesis as fable.  I know there are 'fundamentalist Christians' in America that regard it as literally true.  I believe that fundamentalist Christians are just as dangerous as fundamentalist Muslims.
What is quite amazing, though, is how scientifically accurate the first chapter of Genesis is compared with what other contemporary religions believed.  The Greeks believed that the universe was created by the spilling of the guts of a god.  The Egyptians believed that the universe was created as the result of a god's masturbation.  But the account in the Bible is exactly what scientists believe, if someone could have been on the earth to record it (assuming a 'day' is not one of our days - and why on earth should it be?).  I think the person that wrote that account was definitely inspired by God - how else could he have come up with such a scientific account, in the correct chronological order (lower beings first, man last) otherwise?
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