ORIGINS: UNIVERSE, LIFE, HUMANKIND, AND DARWIN

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ORIGINS: UNIVERSE, LIFE, HUMANKIND, AND DARWIN

We debate origins of the Universe, life, Earth, humans, religion, atheism, using common sense, evolution, cosmology, geology, archaeology, and other sciences, to repel biblical creationism and other religious beliefs.

Location: Oxford University, England
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The portrait is Charles Darwin, age 31, in 1840

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Comment by Marc Draco on August 30, 2009 at 8:27am
America, America, America - is what they're thinking.

They (both) turn a blind eye to the Theocracy that thrives there in all but name. I think the problem is that they are Christian in orgin and most westerners regard Christianity as "warm and fluffy". Which, of course, it isn't.

I'm at a loss since our Government is forever kissing the US Government's arse - they actually talk about the "special relationship" we have them. It makes me want to vomit - despite the fact that I have several friends of American birth: all, thankfully, atheist.
Comment by Marc Draco on August 30, 2009 at 7:11am
Larry, nice to see a Canadian for once. Love your country - particularly the CN Tower... long story.

I'm in blighty - here very few people attend church but it's the "done thing" to get married in church and christen children - even by agnostics and (gasps) some atheists. Personally, I won't have anything to do with this sort of hypocrisy but I fear it's rife.

Many people still list themselves as being CofE (Anglican) on forms even though they probably never even think of church: it's just the accepted norm.

This means that here at least, the populous can be shown on paper to be more religious than it really is. Church attendance is at an all-time low and dropping - yet Creationist belief is on the rise: largely from the Muslim sub-culture and the political correctness.

Most of this seems to come from south of your country. The influence of which is greater than it should be. Team America was a very sober lesson which (funny as it was) brought home to me, how arrogant America as a country (and Americans as a whole) really is.

Not to tar everyone with the same brush, but looking from here, America is looking increasingly like a dangerous and aggressive Christian Theocracy - little wonder that the even moderate muslims regard it with suspicion.
Comment by Louis Davout on August 30, 2009 at 6:06am
"I think the problem is (and always have) that religious arguments are difficult or impossible to disprove (can't prove a negative) and our arguments are far more complex to get your head around."

Another problem is that science is complex and can be difficult to explain.

"If people honestly believe they are Napoleon (for instance) we lock them up and put them on drugs;" What about one of his marshals? Would I err they be locked up :)
Comment by Marc Draco on August 30, 2009 at 5:44am
Well and good: the science is called "propaganda". Or, if you prefer, "The art of disinformation", or even, most accurately when this lunacy is forced upon defenceless children, "brainwashing".

But they seem to be doing a pretty good job of it and are actually giving the appearance of being in the majority now.

I think the problem is (and always have) that religious arguments are difficult or impossible to disprove (can't prove a negative) and our arguments are far more complex to get your head around.

I think what is needed is for the West to stop fannying around and decide where belief ends and delusion begins: and put a legal framework around that.

If people honestly believe they are Napoleon (for instance) we lock them up and put them on drugs; if they believe the Earth is flat, we laugh at them and ignore them. Yet if they believe that a demonstrable fact of science is wrong - and offer bizarre alternatives with no proof, our politicians venerate them and give them voice.

This has to stop.
Comment by Marc Draco on August 29, 2009 at 5:55pm
Oh Louis. I despair, I really do. I was having this conversation today with a friend (who agrees with us thankfully). I find this common ignorance of science dangerous: particularly among "intelligent" people. The same old arguments are dredged up - like the ones for the moon landing hoax or the 9/11 conspiracy. We shoot them down and they pop back up like fairground ducks. I can't register to put my oar in but I feel the idiots are winning the hearts and minds of the masses.

I have a simple cry: "you say it's not true - show me your evidence"; but then often find myself repeating the same proofs which they can't understand (or refuse to).

Hell's teeth - even the Roman catholic church accepts Darwinian evolution as a fact. With all their power you'd think they could get the message through - but noooooo.... they're more interested in telling poor people not to use condoms.
Comment by Louis Davout on August 29, 2009 at 5:18pm
Marc,
I think many of them are willfully ignorant. They 'Evol..' and their eyes, hears, and brains shut off. I have a friend who studies physics for fun. When I heard him say that there is no evidence for evolution, my jaw hit the flow. I was flabbergasted.
Comment by Marc Draco on August 29, 2009 at 2:47pm
Oh noooo....

What really depresses me is when religious people mock educated people like this (and get away with it):

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/willheaven/100007783/the-creationist-zoo-how-humanists-are-turning-into-thought-police/

Worse, the comments include a LOT of religious freaks coming out with crap like, the eye is something that disproves evolution.

See post: Bry St Ives on Aug 28th, 2009 at 2:32 pm

I ask you! I know this is a free country, but I'm amazed and depressed that no one has commented at how stupid such remarks are not challenged. Eyevolution (arhum!) has been well demonstrated - and even shown in various stages of evolution in the natural world. Why is it that people who want to challenge science, have absolutely NO clue of the underlying science and parrot (oft without counter-challenge) the ID movement's boilerplate. The latest vitriol is now to call us Thought Police and I fear that we're heading toward an "idiocracy".

Sometimes I welcome the idea of death. At least it won't be a problem for me any longer.
Comment by OutlawGirl on August 22, 2009 at 9:00pm
I reviewed Expelled for my college newspaper having never heard of ID. By the end of the film I was amazed at how little I'd learned about the "ID movement" and wrote in my review that the film dodged the subject a lot and used shady tactics to get its message across. Since then, this has become typical of my experiance with IDiots and creationists. If there is a hell, Ben Stein's going there for being a liar. ;)
Comment by Scott on August 15, 2009 at 8:43pm
Just a random thought. Isn't it funny that the vast majority of people who went to see the movie "expelled" also think that the maker (Ben Stein) is going to hell because he is no a Christian. Is that irony? I would love to hear Ben's reaction to someone asking him about this.
Comment by Johnny on August 8, 2009 at 4:18am
Yes. Thanx for the response.

I guess I have been using a more general defn of evolution. Not sure when I broadened it - perhaps during my extensive readings on emergence and self-organizing systems. I tend to believe in a reductionist view of everything, and blur the human abstraction layers we have imposed on science into a continuum.
 

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