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  1. #41
    Babylon Candle Venom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flak View Post
    The fact that humans develop primitive gills as embryos kinda sealed the deal for me.
    chromosome 2 did it for me:
    why the fuck would we have vestigial ape telomeres and a vestigal ape centromere?



    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post

    The linked author admits his own ignorance, and he is right to believe that we cannot infer that God exists from ignorance. But this sword cuts both ways, and neither can he infer that his own metaphysical assumptions are true. For all he knows, increased knowledge of the physical world may increase the improbability of abiogenisis and any form of macro evolution.
    I dont agree with the "nobody knows...therefore its 50:50 at this point". His "admitted ignorance" is related to the flaws in calculating odds for something that doesnt have to be as particular of a structure as some people think. The "ignorance" is referring to how some people go off making calculations with the assumption that life had to evolve in one shot from a very particular 4 nucleotide DNA (or RNA) code. Calculating the odds of one person winning the lottery is a lot different than calculating the odds that SOMEBODY wins the lottery.

    Quote Originally Posted by http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/richard_carrier/addendaB.html
    For in fact, his calculation makes a variety of assumptions which negate the use of this number for that purpose: first, for the first life we want to examine the minimum self-replicating protein, not the "medium" one; second, this only gives us the number of different arrangements, and billions upon billions of those arrangements could be viable self-replicators, not just one of them; third, he presumes a four-nucleotide DNA code, even when there is no reason why life had to be coded that way (there are other coding systems known in nature, and scientists are inventing new life forms based on others, cf. op. cit. n. 1a), and alien life may exist which is coded with a different four nucleotides, or more or less than four, and so on, so that the odds of life forming cannot be derived from the expectation that ours is the only possible molecular arrangement; and fourth, this is just the number of arrangements of coding nucleotides in one gene, but for all we know life began much simpler than this, and later developed a coding system through symbiosis and natural selection. That last point is particularly important, since all that is needed to get life going is anything that replicates, and four-bit coded DNA is not the only feasible molecule that might do that--a much simpler RNA code could have been the starting point [1b].
    all these statistics about 747's arising from nowhere are inherently flawed. they make assumptions about 747's arising all at once and they make assumptions about the odds of a "particular 747" (rather than the many possible life forms that could of happened).

    Quote Originally Posted by Owl
    And this points to one of the limits of science. Science, like religion, does not examine its own assumptions, and, as the author makes clear, it's these assumptions that will shape how one answers the question of origins. Philosophy is the discipline devoted to the critical examination of assumptions, and so the question of origins ultimately lies within the domain of philosophy.
    the only limit to science is that it lacks the component simplicity of math and is more ambiguous than pure logic. That isn't to say that we dont make mistakes with science (we do). What it says is that the method of science is pretty high up there on methods that lead to human knowledge.

    Can you really deny that in this very moment you are experiencing something? No. Experiences are the foundation of knowledge. In the sense that when I say something like: "Owl has a cat", we can investigate such a prediction by gathering experiences that either confirm or deny such a statement. This is why one persons experience of the paranormal doesnt mean much against science. Science represents MANY "experiences" where there is repeatability and convergence on the idea that there is no paranormal.

    the assumption: experiences are real (there is no reason to believe in a cartesian demon), is an assumption most sane people are pretty comfortable with.

    If we are really going to question the "assumptions of science" and the "method" of science, then the following lays it out in plain sight:

    Science has been CONVERGING and becoming more consistent in its findings in the past 1000 years. Religion on the hand has only been DIVERGING. What does this tell you?

  2. #42
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flak View Post
    The fact that humans develop primitive gills as embryos kinda sealed the deal for me.
    Quote Originally Posted by Babylon Candle View Post
    chromosome 2 did it for me:
    why the fuck would we have vestigial ape telomeres and a vestigal ape centromere?
    Things like that have led me to believe natural selection has more teeth than religion seems willing to allow sometimes... There's also things like the optic nerve attaching directly in a few places, where in many others it attaches in a backwards/awkward way -- much more likely a holdover from random mutation, just like we see awkward practices left in business processes nowadays that should really be redesigned for efficiency now that the reasons that the original process evolved have changed.

    Calculating the odds of one person winning the lottery is a lot different than calculating the odds that SOMEBODY wins the lottery.
    Yup, that sort of statistical flub seems pretty common in these discussions.

    Can you really deny that in this very moment you are experiencing something? No. Experiences are the foundation of knowledge.
    I find it amazing that the worst conflicts I have had with people in my life involve whether they're operating from a set of assumptions about what the world SHOULD be like or whether they're the sort that draws their sense of reality from repeated experience and corrects ideas that consistently do not conform to their original expectations.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  3. #43
    Tenured roisterer SolitaryWalker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    The linked author admits his own ignorance, and he is right to believe that we cannot infer that God exists from ignorance. But this sword cuts both ways, and neither can he infer that his own metaphysical assumptions are true. .
    We cannot know that God does exist, but we also cannot know that he does not exist. Therefore we infer that God exists.

    We cannot know that purple, 5000 lb elephants exist in another galaxy, but we also cannot know that they do exist. Therefore we infer that they do exist.

    We cannot know that dragons do not exist somewhere, but we also cannot know that they do exist. Therefore we infer that they do exist.

    Remember, as our wise religious philosophers shall teach us, when in doubt whether a particular entity exists or not, always believe that it does exist, just to be safe.

    Moreover, I do not see why we have any doubt whatsoever about the existence of any of those things. We cannot deductively prove that those things do not exist, but our inductive and abductive reasoning clearly shows that they do not exist. The last two cannot exist because the conditions they require are incompatible with the living conditions provided by the universe. (For instance, 2000 lb purple elephants do not exist on Earth and in order to exist they require similar living conditions as they would on Earth. Such conditions could not be found anywhere).

    Belief in God is not alogical because it is cannot be refuted, it is illogical because it can be refuted and reasonableness exhorts us to reject theism for the same reason we must reject the belief in fairies, dragons, gremlins, Santa Claus, or whatever other fantasy that our minds may conjure about what strange things may exist in the broad universe of ours!

    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    Science, like religion, does not examine its own assumptions, and, as the author makes clear, it's these assumptions that will shape how one answers the question of origins. Philosophy is the discipline devoted to the critical examination of assumptions, and so the question of origins ultimately lies within the domain of philosophy..
    Science does not examine its own assumptions as critically as philosophy does, however, the assumptions of science are founded on observations of the external world. Science is dedicated to an empirical investigation of the external world. By assumptions, I mean the premises of the argument. Whatever doctrine science holds as true, the premises for the argument supporting the doctrine are founded on what can be observed empirically in the external world. Such observations are subjected to rigorous scrutiny.

    The 'assumptions' of religions come from the hearsay of the madmen who heard voices in the sky.
    "Do not argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level and beat you with experience." -- Mark Twain

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  4. #44
    Occasional Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SolitaryWalker View Post
    We cannot know that God does exist, but we also cannot know that he does not exist. Therefore we infer that God exists.

    We cannot know that purple, 5000 lb elephants exist in another galaxy, but we also cannot know that they do exist. Therefore we infer that they do exist.

    We cannot know that dragons do not exist somewhere, but we also cannot know that they do exist. Therefore we infer that they do exist.

    Remember, as our wise religious philosophers shall teach us, when in doubt whether a particular entity exists or not, always believe that it does exist, just to be safe.
    Hell yeah. I've been using this argument since 5th grade

    Honestly though, people, what does believing in a creator even solve? You still have the same amount of questions as before (one). How did this creator come to be?

    Anyone who doesn't think evolution can account for the current distribution of species probably doesn't understand the theory.

  5. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Babylon Candle View Post
    You're really going to try and peddle that bullshit here? its intrinsically a religious idea. no matter what fucking name you give it. If people were created, than there has to be a designer with some sort of magical powers! It is INHERENTLY RELIGIOUS.
    I'm not the person who coined the term "Secular Creationism", so take your complaints about the name elsewhere. Second, you obviously don't know jack about the concept I brought up in the first place.

    I'm sorry if I destroyed any simplistic illusions about this just being a matter of science vs. religion.

    Here's just one example explaining the position of the Orthodox Church, along with a little history:
    "Orthodoxy has neither a textual nor a doctrinal basis to reject evolutionism. Neither does it make sense for Orthodox Christians to indulge the current fashion of irrationality (since any irrationality, in the end, will favor occultism and will work against the Church). Before beginning, it should be said that it is more a novelty than a tradition among the Orthodox to disclaim evolution.

    First of all, according to the views of the theologians of the very traditionalist Russian Church Abroad, "the Days of creation should be understood not literally ("For a thousand years in Thine eyes, O Lord, are but as yesterday that is past, and as a watch in the night.") but as periods!"

    Secondly, the idea of evolution, given its separation from its atheist interpretation, is discussed quite positively in works by Orthodox authors. Prof. Ivan M. Andreev, having rejected the idea that man evolved from monkey, says: "In everything else, Darwinism does not contradict the biblical teaching on the creation of living things because evolution does not address the question of who created the first animals."

    Professor of the St. Petersburg Theological Academy, Archbishop Michael (Mudyugin) writes: "The process of evolution of the organic world belongs to the category of phenomena in whose description in the Bible and in the pages of any biology textbook it is easy to see an amazing degree of similarity. The biblical terminology itself fits into the same surprising coincidence it is said: "Let the water bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life." "Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle and creeping things, and beast of the earth after his kind." Here the verb "bring forth" points to the link between distinct phases in formation of the animal world, moreover, to the connection between nonliving and living matter."

    Professor Alexey I. Osipov, of the Moscow Theological Academy supposes: "For theology, both the creationist and evolutionary hypotheses are permissible, in principle. That is with the condition that in both cases the Lawgiver and the Creator of the world is God. All existing species He could create either by "days," at once and in final form, or gradually, in the course of "days" to "bring them forth" from water and earth, from lower forms to the highest by way of laws that He built into nature."

    Professor of St. Vladimirs Theological Seminary in New York, Fr. Vasili Zenkovsky also emphasized the biblical "creative potential" of the earth: "It is clearly stated in the text of the Bible that the Lord gives an order to the earth to act with its own strength . . . This inherent creative activity of nature, "elan vital" (in the expression of Bergson) the aspiration to life, helps to understand an indisputable fact of evolution of life on earth."

    One of the leading authors of the Journal of the Moscow Patriarchate in the 1960's and 70's, Archpriest Nicholas Ivanov was in agreement with the idea of evolutionary development: "The act of the creation of the world and its shaping are manifestations of Gods omnipotence, His will; yet, for Nature, the realization of His will is a long and gradual process, an act of maturation that takes place in time. Numerous transient forms can appear during the process of development, sometimes merely serving as steps in emergence of the more advanced forms, that are linked to eternity."

    Professor N. N. Fioletov, who took part in the Local Council of 1917-1918, thought that "in itself the idea of evolution appears not to be alien to the Christian conscience, or in contradiction with it.".....
    RE: Article on Orthodoxy and Creationism.


    The one statement made about an atheistic interpretation of Evolution is really key here. Most Christian denominations, including mine, have little if anything against a Theistic interepretation of evolution.

  6. #46
    Babylon Candle Venom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    I'm not the person who coined the term "Secular Creationism", so take your complaints about the name elsewhere. Second, you obviously don't know jack about the concept I brought up in the first place.

    I'm sorry if I destroyed any simplistic illusions about this just being a matter of science vs. religion.

    Here's just one example explaining the position of the Orthodox Church, along with a little history:


    RE: Article on Orthodoxy and Creationism.


    The one statement made about an atheistic interpretation of Evolution is really key here. Most Christian denominations, including mine, have little if anything against a Theistic interepretation of evolution.
    I have no complaints about Christians accepting evolution. What you quoted still doesnt address the idea that creationism is inherently religious. I understand that not all religious people are creationists (not even all Christians). However, How one can claim to be a creationist in a "secular sense" is beyond me. What other source of this "creation from magic" could they be referring to? Aliens?, new age spiritiualism?, magic? Its a religious idea, period.

    It has to come down to religion versus science at some point: where do theistic evolutionists propose the soul gets involved? Did astrolopithicus have a soul? Did Neanderthals have a soul? Accepting theistic evolution just adds more ad hoc explanations to rid the theistic world view of absurdities.

  7. #47
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    Obviously you failed to take up my offer to actually google "Secular Creationism".

    Oh well, happy reading:
    The New Creationism

  8. #48
    Babylon Candle Venom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    Obviously you failed to take up my offer to actually google "Secular Creationism".

    Oh well, happy reading:
    The New Creationism
    that article seems to be about the implications of reductionism and determinism/libertarian free will more than anything else.

    But the notion that humans have no shared, biologically based "nature" constitutes a theory of human nature itself. No one, after all, is challenging the idea that chimpanzees have a chimpanzee nature -- that is, a set of genetically scripted tendencies and potential responses that evolved along with the physical characteristics we recognize as chimpanzee-like. To set humans apart from even our closest animal relatives as the one species that is exempt from the influences of biology is to suggest that we do indeed possess a defining "essence," and that it is defined by our unique and miraculous freedom from biology. The result is an ideological outlook eerily similar to that of religious creationism. Like their fundamentalist Christian counterparts, the most extreme antibiologists suggest that humans occupy a status utterly different from and clearly "above" that of all other living beings. And, like the religious fundamentalists, the new academic creationists defend their stance as if all of human dignity -- and all hope for the future -- were at stake.
    come on. these are religious people in denial. The bolded part is clearly referring to a soul or something else equally as ridiculous, just so they can claim libertarian free will.

    OFF TOPIC: i still dont see why this bothers anyone. Determinism and reductionism dont rob us of anything really. its not demeaning to the social scientist to have an understanding of how everything reduces to physics. Its not like its ever going to be possible to have physicists do all of our research. We dont get hot n bothered about playing chess on a computer just because one could in theory play computer chess with 01010101 command/readouts do we?

    BACK ON TOPIC:
    I still have yet to read about the proposed mechanism of secular creationism.

  9. #49
    Glowy Goopy Goodness The_Liquid_Laser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flak View Post
    The fact that humans develop primitive gills as embryos kinda sealed the deal for me.
    Are you referring to "Recapitulation theory"? I believe this was debunked a long time ago.

    Haeckel proposed that the embryonal development of an individual organism (its ontogeny) followed the same path as the evolutionary history of its species (its phylogeny). This theory, in the highly elaborate and deterministic form advanced by Haeckel, has, since the early twentieth century, been refuted on many fronts.

    ...
    For example, Haeckel believed that the human embryo with gill slits (pharyngeal arches) in the neck not only signified a fishlike ancestor, but represented an adult "fishlike" developmental stage. Embryonic pharyngeal arches are not gills and do not carry out the same function.
    Recapitulation theory - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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  10. #50
    desert pelican Owl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Babylon Candle View Post
    I dont agree with the "nobody knows...therefore its 50:50 at this point". His "admitted ignorance" is related to the flaws in calculating odds for something that doesnt have to be as particular of a structure as some people think. The "ignorance" is referring to how some people go off making calculations with the assumption that life had to evolve in one shot from a very particular 4 nucleotide DNA (or RNA) code. Calculating the odds of one person winning the lottery is a lot different than calculating the odds that SOMEBODY wins the lottery.
    I never said it was 50/50.

    The ignorance of the author I was referring to was this: "no one knows what the first life was."

    He doesn't know that his interpretation is probable, neither does he know if it is possible, yet this doesn't seem to concern him.

    Quote Originally Posted by Babylon Candle View Post
    the only limit to science is that it lacks the component simplicity of math and is more ambiguous than pure logic. That isn't to say that we dont make mistakes with science (we do). What it says is that the method of science is pretty high up there on methods that lead to human knowledge.

    Can you really deny that in this very moment you are experiencing something? No. Experiences are the foundation of knowledge. In the sense that when I say something like: "Owl has a cat", we can investigate such a prediction by gathering experiences that either confirm or deny such a statement. This is why one persons experience of the paranormal doesnt mean much against science. Science represents MANY "experiences" where there is repeatability and convergence on the idea that there is no paranormal.

    the assumption: experiences are real (there is no reason to believe in a cartesian demon), is an assumption most sane people are pretty comfortable with.

    If we are really going to question the "assumptions of science" and the "method" of science, then the following lays it out in plain sight:

    Science has been CONVERGING and becoming more consistent in its findings in the past 1000 years. Religion on the hand has only been DIVERGING. What does this tell you?
    How do you know the external world exists? (seriously.)

    Quote Originally Posted by SolitaryWalker View Post
    We cannot know that God does exist, but we also cannot know that he does not exist. Therefore we infer that God exists.

    We cannot know that purple, 5000 lb elephants exist in another galaxy, but we also cannot know that they do exist. Therefore we infer that they do exist.

    We cannot know that dragons do not exist somewhere, but we also cannot know that they do exist. Therefore we infer that they do exist.

    Remember, as our wise religious philosophers shall teach us, when in doubt whether a particular entity exists or not, always believe that it does exist, just to be safe.

    Moreover, I do not see why we have any doubt whatsoever about the existence of any of those things. We cannot deductively prove that those things do not exist, but our inductive and abductive reasoning clearly shows that they do not exist. The last two cannot exist because the conditions they require are incompatible with the living conditions provided by the universe. (For instance, 2000 lb purple elephants do not exist on Earth and in order to exist they require similar living conditions as they would on Earth. Such conditions could not be found anywhere).

    Belief in God is not alogical because it is cannot be refuted, it is illogical because it can be refuted and reasonableness exhorts us to reject theism for the same reason we must reject the belief in fairies, dragons, gremlins, Santa Claus, or whatever other fantasy that our minds may conjure about what strange things may exist in the broad universe of ours!
    If it couldn't be shown that God exists, that would be a problem. I for one do not infer that God exists because it can't be shown that he does not exist.

    Quote Originally Posted by SolitaryWalker View Post
    Science does not examine its own assumptions as critically as philosophy does, however, the assumptions of science are founded on observations of the external world. Science is dedicated to an empirical investigation of the external world. By assumptions, I mean the premises of the argument. Whatever doctrine science holds as true, the premises for the argument supporting the doctrine are founded on what can be observed empirically in the external world. Such observations are subjected to rigorous scrutiny.

    The 'assumptions' of religions come from the hearsay of the madmen who heard voices in the sky.
    Empirical observation supplies data. Data needs to be interpreted, and religious assumptions are used to interpret empirical data.

    However, I don't use the term "religious" in the popular sense. A religion is an ordered set of beliefs a person uses to interpret his experience. In this sense, both the materialist and the theist are religious. It is the function of philosophy to critically analyze these assumptions for meaning.

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