An evolution poll

March 29th, 2013 at 10:00 am by David Farrar

Gavin White at UMR blogs:

We asked New Zealanders which of the following statements came closest to their views on the origin and development of human beings: 

  • A) Human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God guided this process 
  • B) Human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God had no part in this process 
  • C) God created human beings pretty much in their present form at one time within the last ten thousand years or so

To keep the write-up clear, I’ll refer to Statement A as ‘’, Statement B​ as ‘pure evolution’ and Statement C as ‘’.

I like that they didn’t just ask people do they believe in evolution or creationism but actually gave them statements to choose from. A good approach in my opinion, as different people may think creationism means different things.

The numbers show that, amongst New Zealanders:

  • 26% believe in ‘intelligent design’
  • 45% believe in ‘pure evolution’
  • 23% believe in ‘creationism’
  • 6% are unsure.

I’m surprised the level for “pure” creationism is so high, ie that one in four said they think humanity is less than 10,000 years old.

As you might expect, the American numbers are quite different:

  • 32% of Americans believe in ‘intelligent design’
  • 15% believe in ‘pure evolution’
  • 46% believe in ‘creationism’
  • 7% are unsure.

Only 15% of Americans believe in “pure evolution”. Oh dear. Now that I have a problem with people believing in intelligent design. There can be no proof for or against intelligent design. I can’t be certain there isn’t a creator who has been nudging things along.

However I can be pretty certain that humanity is more than 10,000 years old. Unless God spent a lot of time and effort in laying fake clues for us!

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481 Responses to “An evolution poll”

  1. cha (3,779 comments) says:

    A member of the US house science committee.

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  2. labrator (1,745 comments) says:

    Classic comment-bait on a religious holiday DPF.

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  3. mandk (818 comments) says:

    “Only 15% of Americans believe in “pure evolution”. Oh dear”
    Why, Oh dear?
    Pure evolution is just joining dots that shouldn’t be joined.

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  4. kowtow (7,590 comments) says:

    I would have thought that 23% of NZers believing in creationism would merit an ‘Oh dear”.

    And for the many Catholic haters on KB ,technically none of that 23% would be catholic or indeed of the 46% in the USA.

    Before we get too carried away on the Yanks are dumb fuckers theme 2 days ago an American war bird did a fly over (don’t know what it was but the markings were USAF).If it wasn’t for those dumb fuck yanks we’d all be worshipping at some japanese shrine or other.

    We Will Remember Them.

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  5. Ross Nixon (607 comments) says:

    DPF, Intelligent Design only uses the scientific method, so there can be empirical evidence for or against it.
    http://www.apologetics315.com/2013/03/casey-luskin-interview-transcript-on.html

    However I can be pretty certain that humanity is LESS than 10,000 years old.

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  6. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    DPF

    If you had thrown into the post- David Bain is guilty and supports gay adoption after he and Joe Karem have married you could have had the rest of the day of.

    Comments would be assured as Laborator noted above.

    And then Ross Nixon pops up proves your ‘Oh dear” and we are off…………..

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  7. Dean Papa (712 comments) says:

    but all 3 choices seem to imply the existence of ‘God’????

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  8. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    This is essentially no different from those similar US polls asking people if they go to church regularly. The results bear absolutely no resemblance to actual attendance statistics.

    People just lie to feel good about themselves, because there is zero cost in lying and wallowing in ignorance.

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  9. Ross Nixon (607 comments) says:

    ‘Pure evolution’ has so many fundamental problems that I can’t garner enough faith to believe in it. http://creation.com/15-questions

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  10. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    I’ve had that old argument about there being physical proof that humans have existed for more than 10,000 years many times. There are two stock answers: Firstly that the scientists are wrong and that their testing methods are faulty. Secondly, that time for ‘God’ is not equal to how we measure time, 10,000 years is our measurement using our years – God’s calendar is the same but ‘days’ are not 24 hours apparently – when one raises the point of night/day or darkness/light – a lack of understanding in God’s ways is pointed out.

    At which point we revert to the same old argument, that if all things are created, and couldn’t have just ‘happened’, then who created God – the opposition then goes cross eyed and spouts ‘no one’ – he always ‘was’. I give up, point out I have been converted to chocolatism – a true source of spiritual revival.

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  11. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    @ross

    Intelligent Design is unfalsifiable and has no evidentiary support. ID is not science and evolution has more evidentiary support than both atomic theory and the theory of gravity. And those 15 questions have all either been answered or are invalid.

    Evolution is a fact.

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  12. slightlyrighty (2,496 comments) says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oxTMUTOz0w

    Neil Degrasse Tyson on the erosion of progress by religion. The scary thing is that the US is going down this path, despite the efforts of men like Neil.

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  13. Pete George (22,774 comments) says:

    “chocolatism”

    Which has a lot of relevance to modern Easter.

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  14. Changeiscoming (135 comments) says:

    “Unless God spent a lot of time and effort in laying fake clues for us!”

    You will find both sides of the argument have the same evidence e.g. the same rocks, fossils etc. It’s the interruptation of that evidence which is different or the real argument.

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  15. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Ross Nixon,

    More compelling evidence that we were all created in the last 10,000 years by a magic pixie:

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  16. Andrei (2,499 comments) says:

    It is funny how people who believe in evolution and natural selection can be so confused about gender and its role in driving these processes,

    So confused in fact that they are promoting unnatural marriages.

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  17. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    Evolution doesn’t require belief Andrei. And why don’t you piss off with the gay marriage shtick for a day you weird fundy.

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  18. david winter (10 comments) says:

    FWIW, the first option really shouldn’t be conflated with “intelligent design” – a psedoscientific movement arising from legal cases in the US.

    I’m sure most religuous people would think their god has directed evolution toward humanity, so I don’t think it’s very suprising their is support for this view. The problem with the answers (which are modled on US ones) is that they munge all the old-earth creationists into “A”, so that catergory contains loons like Ian Wishart along with more reasonable folk.

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  19. Changeiscoming (135 comments) says:

    Let me also add

    There is nothing more certain to raise the page views like a evolutionism v’s creationism debate, except a “marriage equality” debate post….cue David

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  20. slightlyrighty (2,496 comments) says:

    How about this one (apologies for the obvious trollism here)

    God Invented Evolution!

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  21. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    Evolution doesn’t require belief Andrei.

    or tithing or celibacy or the worship of man made idols or living in fear of eternal burning in a pit of fire or fear about everything really.

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  22. labrator (1,745 comments) says:

    How to open a banana like a monkey.

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  23. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    @Changeiscoming

    It shouldn’t even be a debate. There isn’t a single shred of evidence for a recent creation.

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  24. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    It seems pretty clear to me that the pollster doesn’t know what Intelligent Design means. He seems to be conflating it with the idea of Theistic Evolution – the acceptance of evolution coupled witht he rejection of reductionist materialism that less capable and less intelligent atheists infer from it.

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  25. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    What is the -scientific consensus among suitably qualified Creation Scientists- on this subject ?

    I think we need to stop thinking for ourselves and have faith in the scientific method, used by Creation Scientists.

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  26. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    Agree Cato – old earth creationism and theistic evolution is different from ID which is merely a Trojan horse for young earth creationism

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  27. tvb (4,199 comments) says:

    It was depends on what is intelligent design. The problem with pure evolution is one argues that we are the result of a purely random chance event fortuitously coming together. I cannot accept that pure chance explains the complexity of DNA. But saying that intelligent design might explain it and then calling that god and moving forward to Jesus and the Bible. That is a long bow. I accept in this mainly rational world that relies on facts that things cannot always be explained. Of course the believers and the Greens are happy to accept truths based on no evidence whatsoever.

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  28. Mary Rose (393 comments) says:

    >Unless God spent a lot of time and effort in laying fake clues for us!

    Didn’t he carve a signature into one of the fjords (and then win an award for his work on Norway)?

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  29. SGA (804 comments) says:

    @Mary Rose
    42 to you too.

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  30. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    ID has a specific meaning – it’s a subset of creationism associated with the Discovery Institute. I don’t agree with it but its proponents do popularise some valid critiques of atheistic evolutionists (their ideological mirrors).

    But to classify all forms of theistic evolution as “Intelligent Design” is a bit like saying “Evolution” and “Darwinism” are exactlythe same thing. It speaks more to the laziness and ignorance of the bloviator more than snything else.

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  31. gazzmaniac (2,317 comments) says:

    The problem with pure evolution is one argues that we are the result of a purely random chance event fortuitously coming together

    No it’s not.
    Darwinian natural selection is not driven by chance. It is the simply that the better suited individuals are to the environment are more likely to pass on their genes to the next generation.

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  32. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    I cannot accept that pure chance explains the complexity of DNA.

    Clearly you don’t know the first thing about evolution or you wouldn’t say such ignorant things.

    Selection, by definition, is not a random process.

    As always, it’s people who don’t have the first clue about evolution who are the most confident in dismissing it.

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  33. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Kea – i assume you are aware that the idea of macroevolution isn’t really provable using the scientific method either – in the same way that global warming isn’t either. Of course, that’s not to say that both aren’t true.

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  34. Scott Chris (5,872 comments) says:

    I cannot accept that pure chance explains the complexity of DNA.

    That’s like saying that you cannot accept the complexity of a city having observed a brick. Everything is simple when you break it down into its individual components.

    Evolution just happens to be a 4 billion year old chain with a lot of links.

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  35. Fletch (6,010 comments) says:

    I’m not about the 10,000 years argument, or why it even matters.

    As far as evolution, I believe that the Catholic Church holds the position that evolution might or might not have occurred with regard to man’s body but that the soul is immediately created by God.

    Concerning human evolution, the Church has a more definite teaching. It allows for the possibility that man’s body developed from previous biological forms, under God’s guidance, but it insists on the special creation of his soul. Pope Pius XII declared that “the teaching authority of the Church does not forbid that, in conformity with the present state of human sciences and sacred theology, research and discussions . . . take place with regard to the doctrine of evolution, in as far as it inquires into the origin of the human body as coming from pre-existent and living matter—[but] the Catholic faith obliges us to hold that souls are immediately created by God” (Pius XII, Humani Generis 36). So whether the human body was specially created or developed, we are required to hold as a matter of Catholic faith that the human soul is specially created; it did not evolve, and it is not inherited from our parents, as our bodies are. ~ Catholic Answers

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  36. Fletch (6,010 comments) says:

    Didn’t he carve a signature into one of the fjords (and then win an award for his work on Norway)?

    That was Slartibartfast in Hitchhiker’s Guide ;)

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  37. big bruv (13,218 comments) says:

    That just goes to show that a high percentage of Americans are stupid.

    No wonder Bedwetter loves them.

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  38. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    The idea of natural selection is not fundamentally about chance agreed, but the theory is underpinned by the fact of random mutations. Those underpinnings do involve random chance.

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  39. LabourDoesntWork (282 comments) says:

    Troll, troll, troll your boat…..

    - Why isn’t there a ‘D) None of the above’ ? Haha, what a dumb poll.

    - Evolution exists only in the human imagination as surely as String Theory exists only in mathematics.

    - Richard Dawkins is an asshole, like almost everyone else who self-identifies primarily in terms of “lack of belief in just one less god than you” with that smirk on their face, even as they plan their visit to the next Atheist Conference.

    - Atheism is irrational as it promotes a universe in which truth is meaningless. False irrational religious belief sits better in an atheistic universe than in a theistic one.

    - The atheists should be telling us how much more useful atheism is to human evolution than theism. Good luck looking for evidence of that. You’ll find it in the same place Dicky D milked a post-science career from by claiming Western religion poses a threat to modern science.

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  40. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    man’s body but that the soul is immediately created by God.

    so, the soul is plonked in after assembly rather like an aftermarket bit of kit.?

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  41. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    2Pe 3:8 says: “But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day [is] with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.”

    As I understand it, God does not live in time. To Him, it does not exist in the same way it does to us.

    IMO option C is a misreading of the Bible. Because as soon as you apply 2Pe 3:8 to the various passages which give timeframes, they suddenly expand and this is why carbon dating on finds like Lucy are reconcilable with the Bible. At least they are to me. I may be incorrect but that’s how I read all the timeframes in the Bible, from the seven days to create the world to everything else. That doesn’t a day is always a thousand years of course and also doesn’t mean the time given in the passage is never accurately expressed in our terms as we understand time. Sometimes a day really is a day, for example.

    That’s how I see it, anyway.

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  42. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    There is no such term as ‘macro evolution’. That is a creationist weasel word.

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  43. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Reid, you are cutting and pasting bible passages with different contexts to arrive at your position. It is not a logical or credible position.

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  44. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Reid – quite correct. Your post goes to show how similar Biblical literalists are to the lesser variety of atheists who frequent blog comboxes. Both display great ignorance of the limits of human imagination or reason. The biblical literalist cannot understand how words can have a different and more profound meaning than their plain construction. Materialist atheists simply can’t fathom how something that exists outside a finite universe isn’t bound by its rules.

    That’s why you get modern atheists smugly asking questions that were answered hundreds of years ago – “If God is the uncreated creator then what created God?” etc. By the way, that’s one of Richard Dawkins arguments in the God Delusion. I remember reading some much more accomplished atheist writing that that book was mostly comprised of the kinds of arguments you used to hear from 12 year olds.

    It’s not that atheism is necessarily irrational. There have been plenty of fine and brilliant atheists. It’s just that the majority of people out there today claiming to be atheists need to face the fact they’re not clever or knowledgeable enough to base their atheism on anything other than faith and belief.

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  45. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    As far as evolution, I believe that the Catholic Church holds the position that evolution might or might not have occurred with regard to man’s body but that the soul is immediately created by God.

    If Genesis is false then the whole basis of the Bible is false. Once a belief system abandons its creation myth in the face of evidence then it’s game over. It is to concede that the “religion” is in fact nothing but comforting but childish wishful thinking.

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  46. tvb (4,199 comments) says:

    So evolution moves according to certain laws. Yes it is hard to explain a slow process over 4 billion years. But the elegance and complexity of DNA cannot be explained by a chance fluke and lengthy evolution. The laws of physics which we are only scratching the surface on cannot easily be explained by chance interactions. But to say anything we don’t understand is simply gods will and we take out scientific inquiry no further is equally facile.

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  47. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    “There is no such word as macro evolution.”

    The word clearly exists in the field of evolutionary biology – even if recent Darwinists prefer not to use it. TC, I presume you are aware than “Evolution” and “Darwinism” are not the same thing?

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  48. Griff (6,709 comments) says:

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  49. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    ‘Macro evolution’ is just a culmination of ‘micro evolution’. The same way a car goes from zero to 100. 1 km at a time

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  50. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    That’s why you get modern atheists smugly asking questions that were answered hundreds of years ago – ‘If God is the uncreated creator then what created God?’

    The only problem of course is that the question of who created creator-deities has never been answered.

    How were these guys created?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Creator_gods

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  51. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    Mate of mine is of a religious bent that believes in ID and the whole planet is 6,000 years old or some similar rot. He provided me with all these ‘scientific’ books, magazines etc that showed all the gaps in current theories of evolution, how dating methods don’t work etc. I had great fun pointing out the enormous errors in them and how one had to pretty much dismantle huge chunks of reasonably well established science ranging from astronomy to geology to evolution to support the arguments. He is smart and educated but was completely unmovable in his belief no matter how destroyed his arguments were. I like him and see it more like having an eccentric aunt who believes in astrology and tea leaves.

    It was noticeable that the creationist ‘scientists’ had to have their own publishing houses just to get the stuff published. Says it all really.

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  52. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    so, the soul is plonked in after assembly rather like an aftermarket bit of kit.?

    Pretty much, Paul. See, we are all immortal beings who will live forever. When you see it in those terms you understand that this life is nothing but a school, where all are learning what it means to be good. And that’s a very complex question with lots of avenues for misunderstanding and error. But that’s what life means to me.

    Religion as I see it is genuine gratitude to the Great Architect for creating me and the world I live in, the universe and everything in it including us, the people who we have never met elsewhere in the universe, the laws under which the universe operates and everything else you can possibly think of. It acknowledges He is in charge of me and not because I’m good or deserve it but because He is good, he gives me a path to His kingdom. This path goes to His son who is given authority over my life by the sacrifice He made for us on this day 2014 years ago.

    When Jesus died the curtain in the Temple that separated the people from the Holy of Holies, ripped in half. This signified the path through Jesus was now open to all, as it is now possible to gain entry into the presence of God not through the Levite priests who were the only ones previously permitted to Minister to God, but now, through Jesus Christ, as a result of the fact the Lamb when killed had lead a perfect life, without sin, and such was the only acceptable sacrifice to God. So God have Him authority over all of us, to judge all of us, that we may either enter the Kingdom or descend to the pits of Hell.

    The choice is ours and it’s a very simple commitment to make. All we have to do is acknowledge geniunely in our heart (and God reads our heart, nothing is hidden from Him) that Jesus is Lord over us and that God did, in fact, actually raise him from the dead. If you do that, in a genuine way, you’re in. But you have to keep working at it every hour of every day. This is not as exhausting as it sounds, since God understands we are human, we are morally frail, He created us, yes, He does know us. So He forgives us, but that’s the task, we Christians undertake, voluntarily, on a daily basis. It’s about reducing your sins, over time, as much as you can. And sin equates to enervating habits and behaviours. And secondly acknowledging I’m not in charge of my life, God is. He has a plan for me and you and everyone in the universe. Our job is to relax and let Him drive. And that’s something we have to do, He won’t do it for us. So we learn thereby to trust Him.

    You probably didn’t want to know all that Paul, if I had to guess, but since it’s Easter Friday, it seemed topical.

    Blessings, glory and honour to our saviour, Jesus Christ, our Lord.

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  53. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Agreed. But that doesn’t mean the word doesn’t ‘exist’ as you claim.

    Would you say that there is no such word as “Macroeconomics” because it is just a culmination of “Microeconomic” markets?

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  54. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    @wat

    have to agree – there is no need for a first cause. The universe can just be. Just as logical as a first cause.

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  55. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    It doesn’t exist in the fashion creationists use it and evolutionary biologists don’t distinguish macro and micro evolution as two separate things. It is the same process just over different time scales

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  56. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    @wat – except the necessity for an uncreated being to be created is only a problem if you do’t take the logical position that a creating God is transcendent. The objection is fatuous and only makes sense if you are a priori wedded to a materialist universe. There’s nothing wrong with that, if that’s what you believe, but if you’re both honest and clever then you will admit it’s a belief.

    The question “who created God?” would be problemtatic for a Mormon because they don’t believe the physical universe was created ex nihlio. But for any orthodox Christian, Jew or Muslim it’s simply not a logical impediment.

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  57. UglyTruth (3,957 comments) says:

    However I can be pretty certain that humanity is more than 10,000 years old. Unless God spent a lot of time and effort in laying fake clues for us!

    Humanity (Cicero’s homo humanus) originated in Rome.

    The young earth theory (less than 10K years old) is monotheistic dogma. Genesis 1 describes the creation of mankind prior to the events in the garden of Eden. If Genesis 1 and Genesis 2 described the same events then Cain would not have been able to find a wife after he left Eden.

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  58. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    Reid, you are cutting and pasting bible passages with different contexts to arrive at your position. It is not a logical or credible position.

    Kea you seem to imagine that the Bible isn’t a contextual book with cross-references all over the place. Newsflash, it is.

    If you hallucinate this makes a circular argument because you are using one part of it to justify another part of it which proves nothing, you don’t understand what the Bible is. It’s a reference manual, it’s not a scientific treatise designed to establish whether or not a given phenomena exists. That question is answered elsewhere, by you, through faith. This does not invalidate the reference manual because a reference manual doesn’t pretend to be anything other than what it is, and it doesn’t invalidate religion because religion has never claimed to be “scientific.” But this is where some people get lost. The fact religion doesn’t claim to be scientific doesn’t mean it therefore, ipso facto doesn’t exist, no, it doesn’t mean that, at all. What it means is, the scientific method is inapplicable to religion. It means that religion and science are separate arenas. That they don’t touch on each other, at all.

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  59. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Maybe not. But it is not possible to observe or falsify the idea that all species on life on Earth evolved through natural selection from a single common ancestor without any external guidance. Even the high-priest of Neo-Darwinism, Richard Dawkins, has posited that space aliens could well have helped the process along.

    Richard Dawkins has no objection to the idea of ‘gods’ so long as they are rooted firmly in the material universe. Frankly, I don’t see the real difference between that and belief in pagan Gods – with the difference that Richard Dawkin’s alients would live on Alpha Centuri rather than Mount Olympus.

    Of course, the question of who created the aliens remains unanswered.

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  60. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    A transcendent creator is not a logical position. It answers nothing and nothing can be learned from it. It is completely unfalsifiable and can be used as an answer to everything which is an answer to nothing.

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  61. Urban Redneck (234 comments) says:

    It’s not that atheism is necessarily irrational. There have been plenty of fine and brilliant atheists.

    Quite correct.

    However what is most commonly on display on forums such as this (as evidenced certain by middle-aged anencephilacs on this thread already) is “soft-core atheism” – which is nothing more than a dislike for religious belief because it poses ethical and moral restraints on behavior that might limit ones desire for self-gratification and indulgences. They want atheism to prevail at the least possible expense to the agreeable lives they lead which owe their freedoms and concept of human dignity to the very Biblical authority the reject and despise.

    They would have the “God” religions – Judaism, Christianity and Islam – simply disappear, after which we should be able to go on enjoying the same lifestyle as before, only without the nuisance of suicide bombers and TV evangelists . . . This approach to atheism, of course, is precisely the kind that nauseated Nietzsche and made Camus and Sartre cringe in their Left bank cafes. Atheism at the least possible expense to the mediocrity of western culture is not atheism at all. It is nothing more than the persistence of life numbing religiosity in a new guise. John Haught

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  62. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    the necessity for an uncreated being to be created is only a problem if you do’t take the logical position that a creating God is transcendent.

    What?

    That’s your answer?

    That’s like saying “Aha! But did I say that mine is a magic pixie!”

    And with one bound he was free!

    The Earth was created 6,000 years ago by a space pixie. This explains how the Earth came about. However, he is a magic space pixie, so there is no need to concern ourselves with where he in turn came from.

    Sorry, but that’s just stupid. Even when you dress it up with big words like “transcendent” it is still stupid. It explains nothing. It is just another example of religion being used not as a device to explain stuff but as an excuse to avoid having to provide explanations.

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  63. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    “Maybe not. But it is not possible to observe or falsify the idea that all species on life on Earth evolved through natural selection from a single common ancestor without any external guidance. Even the high-priest of Neo-Darwinism, Richard Dawkins, has posited that space aliens could well have helped the process along.”

    Bollocks – pockets of order in complex systems susceptible to change occurring over time when there is an external energy source pushing up the energy state of the complex system (the sun) is a well established phenomenon according to my Physics degree. The fact that highly improbable events had to occur for evolution to occur is fine as it took an awfully looooooonnnngggg time. And why a single common ancestor?

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  64. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    Of course, the question of who created the aliens remains unanswered.

    The thing about aliens to me Cato, is who ever said they don’t also bow to God? After all, why wouldn’t they, if any exist?

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  65. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    I’m surprised the level for “pure” creationism is so high, ie that one in four said they think humanity is less than 10,000 years old.

    David, you just contradicted yourself. You praised the survey for asking to pick which statement best fitted their views, people may have picked option C because the reject human evolution which both other options demand.

    Someone could still believe that humans have been around longer and pick option C.

    In any case, modern humans have only been around for approx 30 000 years, not one is doubting that from any corner.

    We are a very recent addition to this planet no matter how you look at it.

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  66. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    “It answers nothing and nothing can be learned from it.”

    TC – that is a teleological assumption on your part about the purpose and existence of knowledge.

    I’m sorry, but the idea that a transcendent creator “is not a logical position” is clearly wrong (unless you are using a definition of logical that is completely divorced from its actual meaning of valid reasoning).

    Valid arguments for the existence of a transcendant creator have been put forward by Aristotle, Aquinas, Anselm, Descartes, Newton and others. You can challenge the truth of these arguments, but to deny that they are ‘logical’ is untenable.

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  67. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Reid. Here is some more on biblical context:

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  68. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    @wat

    Cato is saying that there is no need for a 1st cause if one believes in God.

    In in fact there being a God is just as logical as there is not a God. Exactly what I was taught at my Jesuit ran school.

    The fact it fails one of the better tests in Physics, namely Occam’s Razor, does point fact based individuals towards atheism.

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  69. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    After all, why wouldn’t they, if any exist?

    For the same reason we have many different religions.

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  70. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    A transcendent creator is illogical because any and all actions can be explained by it. It answers nothing as it is an answer for everything and nothin can be learned from it.

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  71. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    The only problem of course is that the question of who created creator-deities has never been answered.

    It doesn’t have to be.

    Modern science has proven that time and space only exist within this universe, thus a timeless realm of inconceivable description exists beyond it.

    A God that has the power to create a universe such as ours would exist in this timeless realm or could be that timeless realm either way, what we know about our own existence makes a creator God that always existed completely logical.

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  72. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    @Wat

    If you can’t grasp that it is of the essence of an uncaused cause that he must be free of the need to be caused then I can only assume you are one of those people who is an atheist despite not being smart enough to be an atheist for any good reason.

    @Reid

    Agreed. My point is that Richard Dawkins, among others, can’t get their head around the logical implications of a transcendant deing. They argue, how can something that pre-existed the universe and created it not also be bound by the laws of the universe it created? They furrow their brows trying to get their head around this and resort to invoking folk superstitions like pixies and fairies because that is all their imaginations allow them to conceive of.

    And then, some of them go and believe that aliens might have come here to assist natural selection – because apparently these aliens which are also materialistic beings somehow aren’t also subject to infinite regress.

    Watch this clip of an interview of Dawkins with an ID proponent. I do NOT find ID persuasive but nor do I find materialstic atheism.

    http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=GlZtEjtlirc&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DGlZtEjtlirc

    It’s painful.

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  73. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    It’s quite funny that immediately after explaining how religion and science don’t mix and don’t even pretend they do, people start talking about it as if they do.

    Same with the transcendence angle. All the person was saying was explaining the nature of God, who is transcendent. It’s an adjective. It means being a part of more than one thing at one and the same time.

    This says nothing about whether or not God exists, it merely explains a property which God might have. Who knows whether or not God is transcendent? I suspect He is, personally. It would explain a lot about how He operates if so. But none of us are going to find out whether He is transcendent or not until after we’re all dead, so what’s the point of discussing it further now? Why not just wait till you die, then you’ll find out, won’t you.

    It’s painful.

    Isn’t it. But hey, this isn’t Satan’s world for no reason, right?

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  74. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Cato (566) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 11:19 am
    Reid – quite correct. Your post goes to show how similar Biblical literalists are to the lesser variety of atheists who frequent blog comboxes. Both display great ignorance of the limits of human imagination or reason. The biblical literalist cannot understand how words can have a different and more profound meaning than their plain construction. Materialist atheists simply can’t fathom how something that exists outside a finite universe isn’t bound by its rules.

    You seem to imagine you occupy some intellectual high ground. It is hard to be polite about such arrogance , so I won’t bother trying.

    Your thinking is the product of some of the lowest areas of the human brain. It dates back to a time when man had no other means to explain the world around him. You use it to avoid accepting the reality of your own pointless existence. You will sacrifice truth and lie, even to yourself, rather than enjoy life for what it is. You are part of a pig ignorant and dangerous desert cult from another era. Us atheists are way too tolerant of your toxic cult and we should probably start saying it like it is more often.

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  75. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    @Cato

    “Valid arguments for the existence of a transcendant creator have been put forward by Aristotle, Aquinas, Anselm, Descartes, Newton and others. You can challenge the truth of these arguments, but to deny that they are ‘logical’ is untenable.”

    Well let’s pick a hole in that shall we. Aquinas actually admitted his proofs of God were not actually proofs and there is no proof. It’s all about faith. From memory Aristotles and Anselm’s arguments were actually subsets of Aquinas’s. I cannot be bothered checking on the others.

    There is no proof of the existence of God it is utterly a belief based position. The one good thing about Jesuits is they tended to be highly educated and we would have spent weeks and weeks on this subject going through the various arguments in our five RI (Religious Instruction) lessons a week. Even they admitted it’s all about faith and I would class them as some of the more dedicated religionists.

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  76. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    @Shunda

    If god is outside of time then god is powerless to change anything.

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  77. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    TC – again – you seem to assume that something can only be true if modern man in our current state of technological progress can learn something about the material world from it. I don’t actually accept that we learn ‘nothing’ if reason points us to some transcendent cause of the universe. Nevertheless, if we accept that for purposes of arguendo then I think it’s on you to establish that epistemology is so utterly dependent on how ‘useful’ we deem something to be.

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  78. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Kea – if I appear to be trying to occupy some intellectual high ground then what does that say about people who belittle religion by comparing a belief in a thiestic cause of the universe to belief in mythical creatures of folklaw?

    On that you seem to be oddly silent.

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  79. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    so what’s the point of discussing it further now?

    Because of the misinformation and abuse of science and philosophy by the likes of Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and Christopher Hitchens (dead drunk) to name a few.

    These people in a misguided desire to ‘direct’ humanity are actually robbing humanity, they are also sending us headlong into the next great global tyranny with their forays into philosophy, particularly that ghastly “project reason” and the astonishing crap Sam Harris is spewing forth.

    Modern science is less hostile to the possibility of a creative deity than ever before, it is only because of extremists like the ‘new atheists’ and those nut case young earth creationists that we are collectively robbed of that reality.

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  80. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    If god is outside of time then god is powerless to change anything.

    Or He can change everything. Either possibility is a logical outcome of that proposition.

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  81. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    They argue, how can something that pre-existed the universe and created it not also be bound by the laws of the universe it created?

    The laws [of the universe] were created with the universe. Anything before the universe would not be bound by those laws as they would not exist. A universe in which a God existed, would therefore be the type of universe in which a God could exist and would not contradict those laws by virtue of the fact God was there.

    You do not understand the argument. Theists claim “something can not come from nothing”. The atheists logically ask, “then how did God get there” ?

    We are still waiting for an answer…

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  82. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Slijmbair -

    Maybe you should look them up. Aquinas did agree that there were higher levels of knowing than reason – but how you can say that means he believed his own logical arguments were illogical is beyond me. I wouldn’t call Aristotle’s argument a ‘subset’ of Aquinas either because of rudimentary chronology.

    More than that, if you think Anselm’s ontological argument is somehow related to the argument from a first cause then… well, I will let that speak for itself!

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  83. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    No that isn’t what I am trying to say. I am trying to an answer to everything is an answer to nothing. To imply ‘cant explain it therefore god’ or variants thereof isn’t an answer. It is unfalsifiable, has no predictive power, can never be supported by any evidence, can be applied to anything and everything at anytime which is not a logical position

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  84. pollywog (1,153 comments) says:

    Can i join this circle jerk ?

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  85. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Theists don’t argue that. They argue that the universe was created ex nihlio.

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  86. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    If god is outside of time then god is powerless to change anything.

    Happy Easter “The Contrarian” :D

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  87. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    @reid

    Existing outside of time means you are not effected by time. To change something means a change in outcome but in a timeless state there is no outcomes because there is no cause and effect. Therefore a timeless god is a powerless god

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  88. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    “cant explain it therefore god”

    You do realise that’s not a standard theistic argument right?

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  89. Rightandleft (629 comments) says:

    It seems a lot of religious people try to turn atheism into a religion itself, requiring blind faith that there is no god and thus making all atheists hypocrites. I don’t think too many atheists would tell you they are 100% certain there is no higher power out there and they have faith that is the case. I accept that it is possible there is a higher power, but I think it is extremely unlikely. This is why some atheists have come up with Flying Spaghetti Monsterism, to point out that yes it is possible there is a God, but it’s just as likely that a flying spaghetti monster created the universe. We can’t disprove that either, it is possible, but extremely unlikely. I think this is very different to being an agnostic. I would think of an agnostic as someone who has no faith but is really open to the possibility of there being a higher power and sees the possibility of there being a higher power or not as near equal possibilities.

    The fact that so many people don’t believe in evolution is disturbing. The fact that it is a theory confuses people who don’t understand the scientific definition of a theory is different to the common usage of the term in society. Gravity is a theory too, but I haven’t heard too many Christians questioning it. Even more frightening is the idea that people in positions of power are making public policy decisions based on creationist young Earth beliefs.

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  90. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    If you can’t grasp that it is of the essence of an uncaused cause that he must be free of the need to be caused…

    Oh I can “grasp” it well enough, thank you. Just like I can grasp the idea of unicorns and of turtles supporting worlds on their backs.

    However, speculating on eternal magic pixies is not difficult or clever. Quite the reverse. It is childish special pleading.

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  91. hj (6,343 comments) says:

    “In 1997 Salman Rushdie wrote to the six billionth world citizen, due to be born that year: “It has proved impossible, in many parts of the world, to prevent the human race’s numbers from swelling alarmingly. Blame the overcrowded planet at least partly on the misguidedness of the race’s spiritual guides. In your own lifetime, you may well witness the arrival of the nine billionth world citizen. (If too many people are being born as a result, in part, of religious strictures against birth control, then too many people are also dying because [of] religious culture.)” In 2011, or early 2012 at the latest, we are expecting the arrival of the 7 billionth world citizen. He or she has a 70 percent chance of being born into a disadvantaged family in a poor country. Should we be preparing a welcome or an apology? ”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/14/opinion/14iht-edminois14.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

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  92. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Cato (569) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 12:12 pm
    Kea – if I appear to be trying to occupy some intellectual high ground then what does that say about people who belittle religion by comparing a belief in a thiestic cause of the universe to belief in mythical creatures of folklaw?

    On that you seem to be oddly silent.

    I am not “oddly silent” you just never asked and the answer is very simple.

    You have attempted (once again) to elevate your cult to the high ground with that question. Your Christian religion is a belief in mythical creatures. There is no difference at all.

    It displays stunning arrogance assuming that your vile ignorant murderous cult is being “bellittled” by comparing it to other less damaging belief systems. Get your head around it. There is no God and it is all made up. It has no more credibility and deserves no more respect (probably less) than belief in the tooth fairy.

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  93. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    I know Cato, it is an old god if the gaps argument. However the essence is the same, the ‘oh but god is transcendent’ applies to what I have just said. It is evidence for nothing and constitutes no evidence for anything. It is an illogical position

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  94. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    Existing outside of time means you are not effected by time. To change something means a change in outcome but in a timeless state there is no outcomes because there is no cause and effect. Therefore a timeless god is a powerless god

    No that’s not a logical conclusion TC.

    Existing outside of time does not mean you cannot effect time, this is precisely what the concept of transcendence means. If you don’t get that then you simply don’t understand transcendence.

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  95. hj (6,343 comments) says:

    We have share 70% of our DNA with fish and 30% with yeast.

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  96. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    To imply ‘cant explain it therefore god’ or variants thereof isn’t an answer. It is unfalsifiable, has no predictive power, can never be supported by any evidence, can be applied to anything and everything at anytime which is not a logical position

    It isn’t logical to suggest that nothing exploded creating the universe either then, yet you don’t have a problem with that.

    Why would you think that laws, scientific methodology and logic that work in this universe would be relevant beyond this universe?

    It seems to me that the offense you guys have is in even contemplating the possibility, not the possibility itself because you never allow yourselves to get that far.

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  97. Rodders (1,790 comments) says:

    We have share 70% of our DNA with fish and 30% with yeast

    And in the case of Winston, 90% snake.

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  98. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    We have share 70% of our DNA with fish and 30% with yeast.

    We share 100% of our atoms with certain stars, what’s your point?

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  99. Weihana (4,496 comments) says:

    Cato (566) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 11:19 am

    Materialist atheists simply can’t fathom how something that exists outside a finite universe isn’t bound by its rules…

    That’s why you get modern atheists smugly asking questions that were answered hundreds of years ago – “If God is the uncreated creator then what created God?” etc…

    It’s just that the majority of people out there today claiming to be atheists need to face the fact they’re not clever or knowledgeable enough to base their atheism on anything other than faith and belief…

    Utter tripe. The point is not that I cannot fathom that there might be some form of truth outside of what we already know about the Universe and how it works. The point is that YOU DO NOT KNOW ANY MORE THAN ANY ONE ELSE BECAUSE YOU WAVE YOUR HANDS IN THE AIR PRETENDING TO SPEAK TO SOME MAN IN THE SKY. The point of being an atheist (or agnostic) is to acknowledge the fact that none of us has access to special knowledge and simply pointing out that something is possible in no way substantiates whatever bullshit you believe in without a shred of evidence.

    The question as to why God doesn’t require creation is still a valid one. Religion has never provided an answer to this question other than to merely ASSERT that God doesn’t require creation by definition. Which is quite like saying that faster than light travel is possible using this substance called trilithium. Now I have no evidence that trilithium exists but I will nevertheless define it as a substance that produces faster than light travel.

    This is the classic modus operandi of religion. You just make shit up and pretend like it is self-evident. You assert, you preach, you command… you never demonstrate, prove or convince.

    Now religion is not the only thing where people believe in or contemplate things for which there is a lack of evidence or reason. But religion is significant in its arrogance and conceit. For no reason at all many religious people draw this arbitrary line around their unsupported beliefs and pretend like it’s somehow special and different from other beliefs that lack evidence whether that be the Easter Bunny or a tea pot floating in space.

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  100. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    Sorry, missed the edit window.

    Existing outside of time does not mean you cannot effect time, this is precisely what the concept of transcendence means. If you don’t get that then you simply don’t understand transcendence. Which is that you can be part of more than one thing at one and the same time. So it’s entirely possible to be part of time, and at the same time apart from its effects, in the same moment. As I said, this is simply what the definition of transcendence is. And it applies with respect to any concept. With respect to the subject of time being the concept in question, it’s necessary to look at time as a commodity, in the sense that finance traders look at money as a commodity, that’s all you have to do.

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  101. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    @Cato

    “Maybe you should look them up. Aquinas did agree that there were higher levels of knowing than reason – but how you can say that means he believed his own logical arguments were illogical is beyond me. I wouldn’t call Aristotle’s argument a ‘subset’ of Aquinas either because of rudimentary chronology.

    More than that, if you think Anselm’s ontological argument is somehow related to the argument from a first cause then… well, I will let that speak for itself!”

    Aquinas did agree that his proofs did not actually constitute proofs but were rather arguments that could neither be disproved or proved. He also agreed that there were valid arguments against the existence of God and that fundamentally it was down to belief.

    I bothered to check Anselm and Descartes – both arguments are basically the same – Something wonderful that I cannot fully understand must exist. They are pretty much invented from nothing.

    I was taught at catholic school that Aquinas’s proofs included Aristotles and was framed better so we went over the Aquinas proofs in more detail.

    All you’re really saying is that some people believe in God and some don’t and some of them happened to be famous.

    There is no evidence of God – it is a belief. One that I don’t denigrate but not one that I hold.

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  102. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Getting back to the soul as “an after market bit of kit” as PEB put it so nicely…to which Reid agreed that that was “pretty well right”.

    When exactly is the soul plonked in? Does the sperm carry it, along with the chromosomy things the scientists seen to put so much faith (cough) in? Is it slotted in like a flash of lightning just after fusion of sperm and egg? Sometime later? When a rudimentary heart starts operating in the embryo perhaps?

    I am very keen to increase my knowledge on this point.

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  103. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Actually, I don’t think you can grasp it – which just strengthens my view that you might be an atheist, but you’re not really clever enough to be one. Unicorns were believed to exist by some people as beings which inhabited the physical universe. We can and have made a strong inductive case for their non-existence because nobody has ever found a unicorn.

    That is fundamentally different from looking at cosmology as a whole and inferring that there is, probably is, or might be an external cause. Wikipedia gives a standard cosmological argument as follows:

    1.Every finite and contingent being has a cause.
    2.A causal loop cannot exist.
    3.A causal chain cannot be of infinite length.
    4.Therefore, a First Cause (or something that is not an effect) must exist.

    That is an entirely valid argument. If you disagree with any of 1. – 3. above then you are entitled to be a atheist and are invited to make your case. If, however, your argument consists of:

    1. There used to be folk beliefs about unicorns
    2. Unicorns do not exist
    3. People believe in God
    3. Therefore, God does not exist.

    Then no, I don’t think your clever enough to be a reasonable atheist.

    But you’re entitled to your belief. It’s a free country.

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  104. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    “3.A causal chain cannot be of infinite length.”

    that is where the argument falls down – there is no problem with something without end in physics

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  105. hj (6,343 comments) says:

    “Your hands are, roughly speaking, 360 million years old. Before then, they were fins, which your fishy ancestors used to swim through oceans and rivers. Once those fins sprouted digits, they could propel your salamander-like ancestors across dry land. Fast forward 300 million years, and your hands had become fine-tuned for manipulations: your lemur-like ancestors used them to grab leaves and open up fruits. ”
    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/loom/2012/12/10/turning-fins-into-hands/#.UVTTphy0zFA

    these no sense arguing with creationists.

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  106. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Ah, Cato…you obviously have a very high opinion of your own intellect…Your view on when the “after market bit of kit” that Reid agrees is a good analogy for soul is fitted into the human would be most interesting

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  107. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Aquinas’s five ways – including his cosmological argument – are logical arguments for the existence of God. They are not self-contained proofs of “who” God is but they are designed to prove the existence of a monotheistic creator. They are also logical – though acknowledging that does not mean you have to agree they are also true.

    Thanks for your background information about going to a Catholic school. Alas, the mere fact that you went to a Catholic school does not, in my mind, qualify you as an expert on Catholicism or Catholic Apologetics or philosophy or cosmology.

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  108. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    The question as to why God doesn’t require creation is still a valid one.

    The question of why the universe doesn’t require a creator is still a valid one.

    Religion has never provided an answer to this question other than to merely ASSERT that God doesn’t require creation by definition.

    No, religion didn’t provide that answer, because science did. Which is why atheists were initially extremely disturbed by the philosophical implications of big bang cosmology, implications that remain just as hostile to atheism today as they ever have.

    This is the classic modus operandi of religion. You just make shit up and pretend like it is self-evident. You assert, you preach, you command… you never demonstrate, prove or convince.

    And the ‘new atheists’ lead by Richard Dawkins are very keen on exactly the same damned tactics.

    Now religion is not the only thing where people believe in or contemplate things for which there is a lack of evidence or reason.

    What utter blinkered bullshit.

    But religion is significant in its arrogance and conceit.

    No more so than the many other human ideologies and philosophies.

    By the way, a Christian scientist proposed the big bang theory.

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  109. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Slijmbai -

    Great, I accept you are more reason driven than Wat Dabney.

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  110. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    When exactly is the soul plonked in? Does the sperm carry it, along with the chromosomy things the scientists seen to put so much faith (cough) in? Is it slotted in like a flash of lightning just after fusion of sperm and egg? Sometime later? When a rudimentary heart starts operating in the embryo perhaps?

    It’s an interesting question isn’t it David. I don’t have an answer, personally. What are your thoughts on it?

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  111. pollywog (1,153 comments) says:

    if you have to ask Garrett…you haven’t got one

    which could explain some of your past actions.

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  112. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    If you cannot accept that pure chance explains the complexity of DNA, then you also have to accept that there is no such thing as a natural disaster. That this ‘God’ plays havoc with the human lives he ‘created’, causing death, illness, injury and worse, and that the message of ‘love’ and ‘forgiveness’ delivered in the form of his son, Jesus, was in fact fake – propaganda to ensure human kind’s compliance?

    If that is so, then this ‘God’ makes Hitler’s extermination of the Jews seem like a ‘walk in the park’.

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  113. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I am generally very tolerant of theists in day to day life, as are most atheists. But sometimes I question if that tolerance is morally right.

    The bible is a savage dark and hideous book responsible for suffering and death beyond comprehension.

    Why should we “respect & tolerate” people who promote such a book and do these things to others?

    How many of you really think stoning to death non virgin brides, rape victims, kids who answer back, people who work on Sunday, is ok ? Really !

    How many of you think genocide, infanticide, gang rape etc are ok ?

    They are all right there in the bible and ordered by God (may flies and ticks be upon him)

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  114. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    DG –

    Thanks for your input. Actually I don’t necessarily have a high opinion of my own intellect. I am just interested in the history and reasoning of people I do think have high intellects. This causes me to consider their views instead of thinking that pre-teen musings on the apparent contradictions of theism merit no further investigation.

    I will happily confess to having a low opinion of the intellect – or rather the intellectual curiosity – of a number of the fervent atheists who comment here.

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  115. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Don’t you want to play Cato? Do you have a rule about not engaging with apostates? Not very Christian of you….

    Ah, I do you a disservice; there you are…I too share your awe at the intellects of the thinkers of the past, and I am very curious…I do hope I past muster and merit you continuing to share..

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  116. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Ah, Cato…you obviously have a very high opinion of your own intellect

    Interpretation: Cato is on to something.

    There’s that damned poppy sticking up a bit higher than the others, time to cut it down to size………….

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  117. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Kea and Judith – even if the Bible is as ‘savage’ and ‘dark’ as I am sure your expert enquiry and years of biblical scholarship have led you to believe, there would be zero implications for the correctness or incorrectness of theism.

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  118. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    When exactly is the soul plonked in?

    At the “before school check”.

    My 4 year old is getting his soul next week! :)

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  119. Weihana (4,496 comments) says:

    Shunda barunda (2,575) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    It isn’t logical to suggest that nothing exploded creating the universe either then, yet you don’t have a problem with that.

    This is a classic example of shifting the burden. Because we don’t know exactly how the Universe came to be therefore you can just make up any nonsense you wish and this should be taken seriously.

    In any case it depends how you define nothing. In the first instance there really isn’t any evidence that nothing exists in the philosophical sense. The notion itself is self-contradictory since if “something” is “existence” and “existence” is “identity” then nothing means non-existence and no identity.

    The fact that if we wind back the clock it appears the Universe retreats to a single point does not imply that there was “nothing” in the sense that nothing existed since a singularity or a quantum vacuum or whatever would still have been “something”.

    Moreover, consider how one digs a hole. You start with nothing, just a flat surface, and yet you produce a hole. How can you produce a hole? Because the hole is balanced by the mountain of dirt next to it. Add them together and you get zero again, just a flat surface. This analogy suggests that all the energy in the Universe might in fact still add up to zero if all the mass in this Universe is balanced by negative mass or some negative form of energy.

    But of course this is quite speculative at this point. But that’s the difference with scientists. They admit their theories for what they are and they seek evidence to confirm their ideas. They take on the burden of trying to prove their ideas. Religion just shifts the burden.

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  120. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    @reid

    I god can intervene then he must be subject to time. Otherwise it is just special pleading on your part. If god were to intervene in my being hit by a bus then he must be able follow my path from the house down the street tithe crosswalk which is a passage of time as well as distance.

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  121. hj (6,343 comments) says:

    Anyone know why God made black holes? Is HE a big pyromaniac type? Also why doesn’t God make a Mrs God (or several) so HE can bang her /them?

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  122. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Ah polly…here you are, along with allusions to my distant past, designed to kill (sorry) the discussion…

    But let me get your “proposition” – it really does cry out to be put in quotes – right which is, as I understand it, that if I have to ask questions about when the soul is “slotted in” after market, as it were (your fellow religionist Reid has agreed that that is a pretty good analogy) then asking that question, ipso facto, proves I don’t have one?

    Well blow me down…there’s a bit of logic for you….

    Good Lord, what happened there? Polly’s proposition was right there…and then it wasn’t…

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  123. Harriet (4,502 comments) says:

    Pretending that religion is a force only from the past is part of the baby boomer fantasy, to which so many of the media class subscribe, that they are forever in revolt against the forgotten authority structures of the 1950s, proving their subversiveness by using rude words on TV and radio and mocking or ignoring religion.

    Sometimes the liberal position in New Zealand argues for greater internationalism and cosmopolitanism in our outlook. If we were to take that seriously we would take religion more seriously. There is a link to highlight between faith and fertility. At its simplest, people of religious belief have far more children than people without religious belief. Not only is the majority of the world committed to a religious view of life, this majority is increasing.

    If we want to be Asia literate we need to understand Islam in Indonesia, Catholicism in The Philippines, Protestant Christianity in South Korea and the extraordinary dynamism of the underground Christian movement in China.

    Melvyn Bragg, the author of a splendid book on the King James Bible, though not a practising Christian, has recently argued that the new militant atheism, represented by Dawkins and his countless local imitators, is a destructive force because it seeks to annihilate, or at least cut society off from, the great store of human knowledge, expertise and wisdom embodied in the Christian tradition.
    Why would you favour such ignorance, is Bragg’s unanswerable question. The tradition embodies: its wisdom, its urbanity, its range and depth. Dawkins’s arguments look antique and clumsy. There is something faintly Edwardian about his materialist inability to grasp, or even to concede the intellectual substance of, the tradition of metaphysics going back to the ancient Greeks.

    When Dawkins explains that the universe has come from nothing, but that nothing was really very complex and, in fact, consisted of something, people laugh. Dawkins is annoyed and, like a humourless school marm, peevishly scolds his audiences: “Why is that funny?”

    The trouble, well, there are many troubles with Richard’s teachings, but a fundamental one is that he dumbs down God and soups up nothing. He continually talks as though God is some sort of upmarket figure within space and time. Now, from 450, 500BC where, with the Greek philosophers, God is outside space and time. God is necessary, self-sufficient, uncaused, unconditioned. That’s the hypothesis you’ve got to wrestle with.

    Christians have a legitimate complaint that, far from representing any kind of social conformity, their views, as Christians, are not given the normal democratic weight that their institutional consequence and popular allegiance would suggest is appropriate.

    The final reflection is that we should realise what a remarkable, and internationally important, figure the Catholic Church is. It’s the most significant non-government organisation in the world.

    But here is the big Easter story. God is not dead. :cool:

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  124. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Kea and Judith – even if the Bible is as ‘savage’ and ‘dark’ as I am sure your expert enquiry and years of biblical scholarship have led you to believe, there would be zero implications for the correctness or incorrectness of theism. atheism.

    Cato, it works both ways.

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  125. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    hj (3,555) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 12:50 pm
    —————————–

    I think God is more of a voyeur – ‘he’ prefers to watch the rest of us – hence him catching Adam and Eve. Let’s face it, when you’re stuck in eternity – would you really want to tie yourself down to one wife or even several?

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  126. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    @Cato

    “Thanks for your background information about going to a Catholic school. Alas, the mere fact that you went to a Catholic school does not, in my mind, qualify you as an expert on Catholicism or Catholic Apologetics or philosophy or cosmology.”

    I mentioned that to make the point that this was not my assertion rather the assertions put forward exceedingly consistently over my 13 years at catholic schools in catholic religious education i.e. this is what Jesuits said. People may not like them but they tend to be the most intelligent arm of the Catholic church.

    Considering I spent an long time immersed in Catholicism both in terms of practising it (altar boy for 7 years, mass 3 times a week on average) and receiving a large amount Religious Instruction (1 lesson a day for 9 years) does make me very knowledgeable.

    I would say that having worked through the arguments I find them to be ultimately flawed as they rely on assumptions that cannot be substantiated. That is pretty much what Aquinas said about his own proofs.

    And the fact that you are happy to play the man rather than the argument says more about you than me. Normally a sign of losing an argument.

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  127. Colville (2,065 comments) says:

    Rodders (1,788) Says:

    March 29th, 2013 at 12:26 pm
    We have share 70% of our DNA with fish and 30% with yeast

    And in the case of Winston, 90% snake.

    I would be surprised if the percentage was as low as 90.

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  128. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    I’ve always thought Obama had really big ears for a human being. Maybe that explains his lack of a birth certificate! :)

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  129. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    If you cannot accept that pure chance explains the complexity of DNA, then you also have to accept that there is no such thing as a natural disaster. That this ‘God’ plays havoc with the human lives he ‘created’, causing death, illness, injury and worse, and that the message of ‘love’ and ‘forgiveness’ delivered in the form of his son, Jesus, was in fact fake – propaganda to ensure human kind’s compliance?

    Why does the one thing follow the other, Judith?

    Perhaps you’re not aware that God gave us free will to make a choice between right and wrong and we exercise that choice every single second we’re alive.

    Perhaps you’re also not aware that God has given Satan “a short time” to do his best to convince people to worship him, and not God, and that this is what all this drama we call life is all about.

    Life on Earth here, today, is about and has always been about exercising a choice, either to voluntarily turn toward God, or away from Him and toward Satan.

    And Satan uses every single devious trick in the book to fool people into doing just that. One of Satan’s many names is the slanderer and deceiver.

    God will never interfere with our choice to determine that question, this is His gift to us, our free will. The deal is, we do it voluntarily. While God could make us worship Him if He wanted to, what’s the point of doing that, what does that prove?

    Nothing. So this is what life is, a battle between God and Satan and so far, Satan does pretty well, doesn’t he, when you look around at our poor old world as we know it and live it daily. And the deal is, we get to make the choice, neither Satan nor God will interfere with that.

    So no, God is not responsible for calamities and disasters, to do that is to interfere in the game, and that’s not allowed, the rules, the law, does not permit it.

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  130. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    I am generally very tolerant of theists in day to day life, as are most atheists. But sometimes I question if that tolerance is morally right.

    So does Sam Harris, which is why he is investigating philosophies that may enable the execution of people for believing certain things.

    The bible is a savage dark and hideous book responsible for suffering and death beyond comprehension.

    Life on this planet is savage, full off suffering and death beyond comprehension.

    Why should we “respect & tolerate” people who promote such a book and do these things to others?

    Because the alternative leads to killing them? savagery is bad?

    How many of you really think stoning to death non virgin brides, rape victims, kids who answer back, people who work on Sunday, is ok ? Really !

    How many of you think genocide, infanticide, gang rape etc are ok ?

    They are all right there in the bible and ordered by God (may flies and ticks be upon him)

    It’s amazing then that Christians almost NEVER do any of those things. I wonder whether recording savagery isn’t the same as encouraging it? hmmmmmm.

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  131. Weihana (4,496 comments) says:

    Cato (577) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    1. There used to be folk beliefs about unicorns
    2. Unicorns do not exist
    3. People believe in God
    3. Therefore, God does not exist.

    Straw man. One cannot prove that God does not exist. Again the point is missed about where the burden lies. The argument is that without observation (whether direct or indirect) the default position, or null hypothesis, should be non-existence.

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  132. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    Kea (2,941) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 12:53 pm
    ————————

    I can’t speak for Kea, because I don’t recall ‘him or her’ being there, but I personally spent YEARS, MONTHS, DAYS and HOURS being exposed to countless quantities of ‘bibical scholarship’ in the past. Having lived with, practiced the ‘rituals’ and the beliefs for decades I can assure you biblical teachings are ‘scary and dark’ however, they have no implication as you point out, because although much is based on historical fact – the thesis is not.

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  133. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Well what I need to know right now is did God swoop in and pluck out pollywog’s comment – incorporating a snide reference to my mistakes of 30 years ago – or is there some more prosaic explanation for a comment being there one minute and gone the next?

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  134. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    A few words from God after all it is Easter.

    David’s Punishment – Polygamy, Rape, Baby Killing, and God’s “Forgiveness” (2 Samuel 12:11-14 NAB)

    Thus says the Lord: ‘I will bring evil upon you out of your own house. I will take your wives [plural] while you live to see it, and will give them to your neighbor. He shall lie with your wives in broad daylight. You have done this deed in secret, but I will bring it about in the presence of all Israel, and with the sun looking down.’
    Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.” Nathan answered David: “The Lord on his part has forgiven your sin: you shall not die. But since you have utterly spurned the Lord by this deed, the child born to you must surely die.” [The child dies seven days later.]

    (This has got to be one of the sickest quotes of the Bible. God himself brings the completely innocent rape victims to the rapist. What kind of pathetic loser would do something so evil? And then he kills a child! This is sick, really sick!)

    “I have wiped out many nations, devastating their fortress walls and towers. Their cities are now deserted; their streets are in silent ruin. There are no survivors to even tell what happened. I thought, ‘Surely they will have reverence for me now! Surely they will listen to my warnings, so I won’t need to strike again.’ But no; however much I punish them, they continue their evil practices from dawn till dusk and dusk till dawn.” Zephaniah 3:6-10

    “You Ethiopians will also be slaughtered by my sword,” says the LORD. And the LORD will strike the lands of the north with his fist. He will destroy Assyria and make its great capital, Nineveh, a desolate wasteland, parched like a desert. The city that once was so proud will become a pasture for sheep and cattle. All sorts of wild animals will settle there. Owls of many kinds will live among the ruins of its palaces, hooting from the gaping windows. Rubble will block all the doorways, and the cedar paneling will lie open to the wind and weather. This is the fate of that boisterous city, once so secure. “In all the world there is no city as great as I,” it boasted. But now, look how it has become an utter ruin, a place where animals live! Everyone passing that way will laugh in derision or shake a defiant fist. Zephaniah 2:12-15

    “I will sweep away everything in all your land,” says the LORD. “I will sweep away both people and animals alike. Even the birds of the air and the fish in the sea will die. I will reduce the wicked to heaps of rubble, along with the rest of humanity,” says the LORD. Zephaniah 1:2-6

    They are the ones who caused the plague to strike the LORD’s people. Now kill all the boys and all the women who have slept with a man. Only the young girls who are virgins may live; you may keep them for yourselves. Numbers 31:7-18

    When the LORD your God hands it over to you, kill every man in the town. But you may keep for yourselves all the women, children, livestock, and other plunder. You may enjoy the spoils of your enemies that the LORD your God has given you. Deuteronomy 20:10-1

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  135. Chthoniid (2,027 comments) says:

    Technically, Statement A accords more to what is known as Theistic Evolution (but is fuzzy enough that it could include Intelligent Design). Biologists like Ken Miller (theistic evolution) has come out firmly against ID, both in academic & legal settings (cf Dover Trial).

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  136. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    I god can intervene then he must be subject to time. Otherwise it is just special pleading on your part. If god were to intervene in my being hit by a bus then he must be able follow my path from the house down the street tithe crosswalk which is a passage of time as well as distance.

    Like I said TC there is no logic that says he must be subject to time, this is not “special pleading” it’s simple language and logic as we know it.

    God is cognizant of all that happens. From the first moment of time to the last moment, when the universe vanishes into the singluarity from which it came, God has existed throughout and will continue to exist beyond that moment.

    I’m not sure why you think that’s not how it is. You might not believe it is that way because you don’t accept that God does exist, but that’s a separate question that doesn’t touch on this one.

    Well what I need to know right now is did God swoop in and pluck out pollywog’s comment – incorporating a snide reference to my mistakes of 30 years ago – or is there some more prosaic explanation for a comment being there one minute and gone the next?

    I rather suspect s/he used the Delete link at the bottom of your posts when they are in Edit mode David. I think that’s probably what happened.

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  137. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    Reid (13,256) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 12:55 pm
    ———————–

    You lost me at ‘god gave’.

    You are wasting your time preaching ‘at me’. I have been preached at for more than half my life. I have read the bible many times. I have spent hours on my knees praying with ‘an open heart’ sure that there was a ‘being’ out there to listen.

    There isn’t. That I know for sure. It is not a loss of faith, it is a touch of reality. Sorry, but you are going to be sorely disappointed when you snuff it.

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  138. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Sorry I still don’t think that taking RE in a Catholic school makes you an expert on Catholic apologetics or theology. Millions of children have the same education every year and I don’t consider them to be experts either. It depends on the quality of your teachers and your aptitude. Having been through the Catholic school system myself I don’t think that it’s much of a guarantee of anything.

    I’m sure DG will agree. He went through Catholic schooling and, until just a month ago. he was adament that the heresy of Feenyism was part of the official body of the Churches teaching until he had to be somewhat brutally undercut.

    All I can say is read Summa Theologica or a good commentary on the same. Tthen do some background reasing on Aristotle. If you don’t believe that Thomas Aquinas is presenting logical arguments for the existence of a creator (rather than a proof of the existence of a triune God per se) then I will be very surprised.

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  139. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    David Garrett (3,420) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 1:00 pm
    —————————

    Oh come on David, that wasn’t God – that was ‘FUN’ the other thing we worship. There is no sport quite as much fun as winding you up with said references to ’30 years ago’.

    Take it on the cheek David – I know you can even when it gets tiresome. Think of the enjoyment we get from it!

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  140. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Weihana, no we can not prove God does not exist and there is no need to prove it. The burden of proof is with the person making the claim.

    We can claim tooth fairies, Unicorns, and any thing else, can not be proven false. It is a silly and intellectually gutless position to take.

    There is no evidence to support belief in God, so the honest thing to say is that there is no God.

    Theists get this too. They are atheists about all the Gods every invented, except their one. As Dawkin’s has said, they believe in one less God than him.

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  141. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    @Cato

    still playing the man – I said knowledgeable not expert – you appear to be trying to play the ‘I am expert card’ implicitly – still losing the argument?

    The school I went to did send about 15 people a year to Oxbridge so I would expect the standard of discussion and knowledge to be high. It was also a highly religious school. But that’s neither here nor there – look at the arguments.

    The other point I am making is that I have already spent many, many weeks studying this stuff and the arguments don’t stack up.

    You either believe or you don’t

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  142. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    If god is not subject to time then he can’t effects objects in time because doing so required one be subject to cause and effect. How can a being not subject to time stop a glass of milk from spilling? There is a start with a glass on a table and a finish with it on the floor. A being not subject to time would see the universe as static and frozen.

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  143. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    If you cannot accept that pure chance explains the complexity of DNA, then you also have to accept that there is no such thing as a natural disaster.

    The emergence of life on this planet is still a very difficult problem to explain, chance or probability is of no help to you here Judith, the planet hasn’t been habitable for long enough, even dorky old Dawkins knows that.

    That this ‘God’ plays havoc with the human lives he ‘created’, causing death, illness, injury and worse, and that the message of ‘love’ and ‘forgiveness’ delivered in the form of his son, Jesus, was in fact fake – propaganda to ensure human kind’s compliance?

    If that is so, then this ‘God’ makes Hitler’s extermination of the Jews seem like a ‘walk in the park’.

    Judith, perhaps you should do some research into other planets and bodies within the solar system, because the first thing you will discover is how remarkably benign our world is for a planet that is still geologically active. All these processes make life possible on this world and none of them are as destructive as what other objects in the solar system have been subjected to.

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  144. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Weihana,

    Sorry I don’t think you’re well versed with argument and analysis. The discussion was whether theism is logical. The cosmological argument is logical. If each of the premises are true then the conclusion is also true.

    To tie this in to your objection about the onus of proof, Slijmbai gave a logical response by rejecting 3, on the basis that infinite causal chains can exist because he has a physics degree and he says physics has no problem with this. However, that’s no different than saying “Unicorns exist and you can’t say otherwise because biology has no problem with a horse having a horn. Prove me wrong.”

    To rework TheContrarian, this is a ‘physics of the gaps’ – to wit, “We can’t explain it …. but physics!!”

    I also don’t think you know what a ‘straw man’ means.

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  145. Chthoniid (2,027 comments) says:

    Please also note, that nowhere in biology is it claimed that DNA is a product of pure chance.

    That’s a creationist lie. A despicable deceit by those willing to surrender all integrity to support their claim.

    Evolution includes non-random sorting mechanisms (e.g. selection). Even the number and types of mutations we might experience show different (and predictable) frequencies.

    Complex molecules comply with the physics of self-organising systems and the chemistry of bonding. They don’t form by pure chance but in predictable ways. For instance, research on abiogenesis in the last decade has shown that deoxyribonucleotides form naturally with iron-sulphur reduction chemistry. This isn’t about chance, but the inevitable products of physics and chemistry.

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  146. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    The heresy of Feeneyism was taught in Catholic schools in Liverpool until the late 70s. Not that long ago really.

    A major driver for me to question Catholicism

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  147. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    Fuck me Cato

    the only ego the equal of yours I’ve seen by people who have nothing to be egotisical about are Anderton and Peters,(I’m not suggesting that you are as horrid a human being as those two) just the rating of your own intelligence.

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  148. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    Cato’s right. Horse’s can have horns!

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  149. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Cato: What I find fascinating about you old son (I assume, perhaps wrongly that you are male; one of the many problems with anonymous commenters is the need to make assumptions) is that you assume that you, of all of us exposed to the depredations of the brothers and nuns for many years, and who also read widely in our youth…only YOU have managed to discern the truth…the right way…the Light, if you will…

    The rest of us have somehow missed it…got sidetracked down some heretical scientific path at some point…Well, if that is in fact correct it seems to me (with my limited intellect) that there are only two possibilities: 1) You are a vastly more intelligent being – even without the ‘design’ – than the rest of us who went through similar experiences; or 2) For some reason the brainwashing stuck with you, but not with the rest of us Godless heretics mourning and weeping in the vale of tears …shit how did that get in there??

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  150. Chthoniid (2,027 comments) says:

    @Shunda barunda

    Why is the emergence of life difficult to explain? According to some definitions of ‘life’ we’ve already done it. I can’t think of any vital cellular component we’ve haven’t know generated abiotically. What are we missing?

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  151. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    Shunda barunda (2,580) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 1:11 pm

    …none of them are as destructive as what other objects in the solar system have been subjected to.

    YET!

    Earth is a baby – give it time.

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  152. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Cato, A recent study revealed that Atheists have better bible knowledge than Christians. Google it for yourself.

    I wonder how many of you Christians married a virgin ? If not, here is the remedy for non-virgin brides. GOD commands it, so get to work.

    Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die Deuteronomy 22:21

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  153. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    If god is not subject to time then he can’t objects in time because doing so required one be subject to cause and effect. How can a being not subject to time stop a glass of milk from spilling? There is a start with a glass on a table and a finish with it on the floor.

    The bible agrees with you, which is why Christian doctrine involves “an economy of miracles”. A miraculous event is consistent with a God that intervenes rarely and supernaturally, otherwise it wouldn’t be a miracle.

    So you are correct, the God of the bible would have to violate the physical laws to interact with the creation. Unless He came into our realm in, oh I don’t know, maybe human form? and then interacted directly with us.

    Happy Easter!! :D

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  154. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Sorry Sljmbai – I didn’t realise it was a good school. I didn’t go to Oxbridge so I will accept that somebody who went to school with people who did go to Oxbridge is probably very knowledgeable – especially if they have also spent weeks reading about the subject.

    What are the lives of some of the greatest philosophers and scientists compared to weeks worth of reading? Gottfried Leibniz might have found the arguments for God compelling but what the hell would he know?

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  155. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    Of interest does anyone in this thread believe in creationism or think that evolution is not valid?

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  156. Andrei (2,499 comments) says:

    If the second law of thermodynamics holds how does evolution overcome it to bring ino existence evermore complex structures, in contradiction to every other phenomina we observe?

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  157. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    @Cato

    there are plenty of philosophers who do not believe in God

    We stand on the shoulders of giants and all that

    Still playing the man.

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  158. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Why is the emergence of life difficult to explain? According to some definitions of ‘life’ we’ve already done it.

    I can’t think of any vital cellular component we’ve haven’t know generated abiotically. What are we missing?

    As far as earth goes we have a big problem in explaining how life emerged so quickly after the “late bombardment” an event so violent that it left our planets surface in a molten state and completely uninhabitable to any known form of life.

    The more we learn about the solar system the more interesting these discussions become.

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  159. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    slijmbal (851) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 1:23 pm
    ———————————

    Your answer lies with the humble hot cross bun. A creation that must go through a process of evolution to exist.

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  160. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    There seems to be less spice and fruity bits in them recently Judith! :)

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  161. Chthoniid (2,027 comments) says:

    Wow, Andrei, by that logic photosynthesis would also be impossible because it also makes complex molecules from simple too.

    You don’t have a clue what the 2nd Law really says, and here you are, pretending you do. I assume you belong to a religion that treats deceit as a virtue.

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  162. Flyingkiwi9 (54 comments) says:

    For anyone interested, Ross Nixon posted 15 ignorant questions about evolution; here is the evolutionists response;

    http://www.thinkatheist.com/forum/topics/15-questions-for-evolutionists

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  163. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    If the second law of thermodynamics holds how does evolution overcome it to bring ino existence evermore complex structures, in contradiction to every other phenomina we observe?

    Because of the Sun Andrei, this provides the energy to ‘go against the grain’ so to speak.

    I’m not saying evolution explains all aspects of life however, because it doesn’t.

    If you believe in young earth creation, I seriously suggest you take a look at Hugh Ross’s material with an open mind, Christianity is suffering terribly under the young earth movement and it is completely unnecessary.

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  164. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    David Garrett – sorry, I am not old. I am in my early 20s. I wasn’t exposed to any depredations and that might be why I don’t see things through the same bitter lens that you do.

    As for Slijmbai – great, you were taught a heresy in a disagreement with a then existing and authoritive document of Church teaching Lumen Gentium. That just vindicates my sceptism on your claim to authority.

    Third, I reject the characterisation of myself having a monumental ego or having some brilliant insight. I am painfully aware of my own limitatations and ordinariness. That is why I look to the arguments of the greats to help me make my mind up. To cite them is less arrogant that assuming one’s own experiences and reasoning constitute incontrovertible arguments.

    And if my tone seems strident that’s another weakness. Theists on this blog don’t tend to start by riduculing others. Ridicule is almost always initiated by the irreligious who then act shocked when someone else imitates their sense of superiority. If you can’t stand to be hit then don’t hit yourself.

    Finally, Johnboy just proved that unicorns exist. By Wat Dabney’s own internal logic, he should now concede the existence of God.

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  165. Chthoniid (2,027 comments) says:

    @Shunda barunda

    You didn’t answer the question. The period between the Hadean period and the emergence of life is not extraordinarily short. Can you identify ONE component of early life we haven’t generated abiotically? (and this in much smaller time frames).

    Nothing I have read in the scientific literature supports your fantastic claim.

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  166. Andrei (2,499 comments) says:

    I do so know what the second law says Chthoniid and your example of photosynthesis doesn’t violate it because although there is a temporary local decrease in entropy via photosynthesis it is matched by a far greater increase in entropy in the Sun itself

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  167. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    @Andrei

    The 2nd only applies to closed systems and earth is an open system so evolution does not violate the 2nd law

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  168. Chthoniid (2,027 comments) says:

    @Andrei

    That’s the point. Evolution violates the 2nd Law in exactly the same way that photosynthesis does. It doesn’t. Any process that generates more complex molecules can be sustained in an open system with an external energy source.

    If you don’t get it, your claim to ‘really’ know the 2nd Law is a charade.

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  169. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Nothing I have read in the scientific literature supports your fantastic claim.

    So why was Dawkins etc trying to ‘solve’ a problem that didn’t need solving? Panspermia? Aliens “dropping it off”??.

    Abiogenesis is a a huge problem, the conditions on earth that would have existed at the time required for the complexity of life to develop to it’s current level were not right.

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  170. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Slijmbal

    I know there are plenty of atheist philosophers. I said myself that there have been atheists with brilliant minds. My whole point has been to argue that religion is reasonable as a matter of logical analysis. Note that this is not the same thing as stating religion is true.

    It is those who won’t allow this – implicitly holding themselves to be superior minds to many of the great geniuses who believed that some religious truth could be established through use of reason – who I consider to be too dumb to be atheists.

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  171. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    If the second law of thermodynamics holds how does evolution overcome it to bring ino existence evermore complex structures, in contradiction to every other phenomina we observe?

    I just tidied my desk, Andrei. Entropy decreased (if we just focus on my desk of course which, in your argument, we are.)

    Ergo, I am a god.

    Strangely, I feel no need to be worshipped or to behave like the brutal, childish prick from the Bible.

    Maybe that comes later.

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  172. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Slijm: I’ll go first…Science and reading tell me that the evidence for evolution is overwhelming….that everything emerged slowly and fitfully from a primordial soup of “stuff” that made all that followed possible…I am less certain on what happened before the primordial soup; how that “evolved” from atoms…

    I absolutely cannot comprehend how, as I read recently, in the tiniest pragment of time after the big bang, the universe came into being as it is now, ever expanding…but I suspect it would take the intellect of Steven Hawking – or Cato perhaps – to be able to get one’s head around that…

    And what happened before that? I haven’t a clue…wishful thinking makes me hope the Catholics are right, and it doesnt all end at the door of the crem, but in my gut, I think that’s just wishful thinking…

    How’s that as a starter for ten?

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  173. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    This thread seems to be acting in semi-accordance with the first law in that:

    “An argument can either be created or destroyed and can change from one form to another at the whim off the author! ” :)

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  174. Andrei (2,499 comments) says:

    Christianity is suffering terribly under the young earth movement and it is completely unnecessary

    That is because people who don’t like Christianity steer the conversation towards discussing it, in the same manner as they focus on things like stoning people in the Old Testament.

    This is done to distract, of course.

    Our existence is a mystery, one which science cannot explain. Why are we here? Who can answer that?

    Your eventual salvation does not rely upon you beleiving the earth is 7000 years old or 14,000 billion years, whatever the latest iteratioin of the scientific number is. Makes no difference to anything which ever view is correct.

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  175. Chthoniid (2,027 comments) says:

    @Shunda barunda

    Dawkins IS NOT a researcher on abiogenesis. I asked you to name ONE component of early life we have not been able to generate abiotically. Got it. Not fall back on a false authority. Not repeat you claim. I asked you to support your claim by producing scientific evidence on the improbability- to whit, the components of early life we haven’t generated.

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  176. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    I don’t think of myself as being an intellectual DG. Like you, I ply my trade in the real world. Doing that has taught me the limits of my own competence and expertise – but it has also taught me every body elses limits too.

    I am sorry your formative experiences of the Catholic Church has made you bitter against it but I hope you will come back one day.As Chesteron noted: “there are a thousand reasons to leave the Church and only one reason to stay: It’s true.”

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  177. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    @Cato

    “As for Slijmbai – great, you were taught a heresy in a disagreement with a then existing and authoritive document of Church teaching Lumen Gentium. That just vindicates my sceptism on your claim to authority.”

    Still playing the man

    I make no claim to authority – I have only ever made a claim to knowledge – you are a bit of an arrogant tit and would be treated better if you stopped being one. I have not made any commentary on you personally to date but you continue playing the man. It is pretty obvious you have a poor understanding of the various arguments for an against God as they pretty much don’t prove anything. It’s all down to belief.

    The fact that the Catholic church was teaching an abhorrent view across a population of approximately 1 million plus says more about catholicism than anything. This was consistent teachings across churches and schools not something done just in my presence. How you translate that to any ability I have to interpret arguments presented is another example of you being a bit of an arrogant tit.

    I am now playing the man – it seems only fair.

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  178. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    I’ll go first…Science and reading tell me that the evidence for evolution is overwhelming….that everything emerged slowly and fitfully from a primordial soup of “stuff” that made all that followed possible…I am less certain on what happened before the primordial soup; how that “evolved” from atoms…

    Primordial soup has unfortunately not yet been found on the menu of any early earth eateries! :)

    I absolutely cannot comprehend how, as I read recently, in the tiniest pragment of time after the big bang, the universe came into being as it is now, ever expanding…but I suspect it would take the intellect of Steven Hawking – or Cato perhaps – to be able to get one’s head around that…

    Cool aye. I love reading about this stuff.

    And what happened before that? I haven’t a clue…wishful thinking makes me hope the Catholics are right, and it doesnt all end at the door of the crem, but in my gut, I think that’s just wishful thinking…

    I have to believe there is some point to all this, and in this regard I do have faith. But I hope the Catholics and other organized religions are wrong, I hope that if Jesus is real and really wants to save us that ‘church’ is not what he meant that salvation to be.

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  179. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Cato: By crikey, in your early 20′s you say? Such wisdom and learning in one not yet 25…You obviously went to one of the “better” Catholic schools..St Pat’s Silverstream perhaps, rather than Saint God knows Who in Rotorua…

    But seriously, given that you can not only hold you own but leave us lesser mortals in the shade of your knowledge, intellect, and powers of deduction, you must not hide your light under a bushel! Tell us, pray, where you are currently studying, and what esoteric branch of learning you are currently contributing your insight to…. What time is it in your part of the world? You cannot still be here, in one of our internationally unranked universities, surely? (Yes, graduates of Auckland, settle down….)

    Shunda: Well said Sir….I suspect that you might have passed age 25….I use “Catholics” in that statement of my hope merely from habit….habit…geddit?

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  180. Harriet (4,502 comments) says:

    DPF#

    D) Pantheism is the belief that everything composes an all-encompassing, immanent God, or that the universe (or nature) is identical with divinity.

    Pantheists thus do not believe in a personal or anthropomorphic god. However:

    “….The Vatican mentioned pantheism in a 2009 Papal encyclical and a 2010 New Year’s Day statement, criticizing pantheism for denying the superiority of humans over nature and “seeing the source of man’s salvation in nature”.
    Author Ross Douthat, in a review of 2009 film Avatar, described pantheism as “Hollywood’s religion of choice for a generation now”…..”

    DPF -”….I like that they didn’t just ask people do they believe in evolution or creationism but actually gave them statements to choose from. A good approach in my opinion, as different people may think creationism means different things….”

    This is what happens every Easter and every Christmas – idiots like UMR come out of the secular woodwork and make fools of themselves :

    The Greens like God – Exist ! :cool:

    Given the political make-up of NZ, whoever it was at UMR that ‘conducted’ this poll needs to be fired as it is seriously flawed.

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  181. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    I asked you to name ONE component of early life we have not been able to generate abiotically.

    Did you do it with oxygen and UV radiation present?

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  182. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    “and only one reason to stay: It’s true.”….Stupid is a reason? :)

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  183. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Why are we here? Who can answer that?

    You are a mammal.

    Why would you imagine for a single moment that you are here for a reason?

    The sheer vanity of the question is breath-taking.

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  184. Griff (6,709 comments) says:

    There is no god.

    There is no logical basis for a belief in god.

    Occam’s razor.

    As well I find the belief in a Cristian god pathetic in the number of logic leaps and contradictions it entails.

    As to why are we here.

    Infinite possibility in a infinite universe.

    Chance.

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  185. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    Can’t accept that we are just here for the rooting like the Stags, Goats, Sheep and Horses wat! :)

    Oh the arrogance!

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  186. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    YES THERE IS A GOD Griff.

    IT’S ME!!!! :)

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  187. Chthoniid (2,027 comments) says:

    @Shunda barunda

    If you had done any research at all on abiogenesis you would know your claim is a fiction.

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  188. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

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  189. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Shunda: Well said Sir….I suspect that you might have passed age 25….I use “Catholics” in the statement merely from habit….habit…geddit?
    :)

    Organized religion has been a tough road for some, no doubt about it. Me and the Mrs basically lost most of our extended family over it, but for some reason I don’t blame Jesus like some people seem too. To be honest, Christian principles are what enabled me to deal with crap parenting to some extent.

    In saying that, I’m no saint and would have to rely on a huge amount of Gods grace.

    In a recent bout of depression I actually remembered some stuff on suicide we discussed (argued) about on this blog David, it seems I was heading out in the car not to sure what was going to happen and I remembered some of the stuff on that thread.

    I think this is what a true spiritual experience is, people can be wrong about all sorts of stuff (I was very wrong on that thread that day and I still feel bad about it) but I think that experience and me eating humble pie that day may have actually saved my life.

    So thanks DG! :)

    And I’m not joking.

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  190. Harriet (4,502 comments) says:

    “….There is no god……There is no logical basis for a belief in god….”

    Religion along with education, are the major influences outside of ‘parenting’.

    If you think that you can create the ‘perfect NZ society’ without religion, but built upon the efforts of the Teachers Union and Hekia Parata -because that’s all you’ve got- well good luck with that BELIEF Griff! :cool:

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  191. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    ” absolutely cannot comprehend how, as I read recently, in the tiniest pragment of time after the big bang, the universe came into being as it is now, ever expanding…but I suspect it would take the intellect of Steven Hawking – or Cato perhaps – to be able to get one’s head around that…”

    What is interesting is that most people base their understanding of the physical world based on what we see, which is basically Newtonian Physics. Quantum Mechanical and Relativistic effects don’t fit our intuitive (but wrong) view of the world, for instance.

    Silicon chips use Quantum Tunnelling for instance. The electron somehow appears the other side of a barrier. Similarly, time slows at relativistic speeds. The speed of light is a constant for all observers etc.

    One learns to trust the math and realise that the world is a strange place.

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  192. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Shunda: Now I say this in the kindest possible way….”I have to believe there is some point to all this….” Isn’t that just THE point? I can recall as a callow youth – considerably younger even than Cato – feeling that there just MUST be some point…that all the wonder and intricacy that is even one human being, let alone countless millions of us, couldn’t simply become fertilizer at death, and our passing be like a fist withdrawn from a bucket of water…But as age has overtaken me, I find myself less and less able to argue – with myself much less with others – that there “must” be a point….merely wishing that there was does not make it so….and I confess to knowing nothing about the laws of thermodynamics or whatever those chaps are debating…

    And as a very dear confirmed atheist friend of mine who died suddenly recently observed, if he (my friend) is correct, Cato and his ilk won’t even get to find out they were wrong all along!

    Shunda: I have just read your comment above…I have to decide very quickly whether to delete what I have written…I dont think I will…I thank you for what you said, and do not think you are joking

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  193. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    If you think that you can create the ‘perfect NZ society’ without religion…

    Because Christian Europe prior to the Enlightenment was so perfect, wasn’t it Harriet.

    The fact that you would probably have been burnt at the stake for professing the wrong sort of Christianity doesn’t dampen your enthusiasm one little bit.

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  194. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Cognitive dissonance.

    Christians believe, in what is not true, to show how strong their faith is. It’s a miracle, that despite all evidence to the contrary, they still believe in creationism.

    Also belief in a flood story, that is not true, to show their faith in the bible as the word of God and their faith in Jesus (as the word made flesh) – thus they believe in a God that mass murdered most of the humanity.

    Then in a God that promised via rainbow not to mass murder again, then restrained itself by “singling” out and destroying a pair of cities where the rainbow coalition thought they could do what they wanted.

    So sacrificing faith in this word of a God of judgement was required to preach of a God that would protect the life of humanity, even from death. Of course no God had to die, just the warped view of God that men had developed in their silly legal precepts about God being behind authorising death sentence law, the murder of Egyptian children, the instruction to kill Canaanites and the rise and fall of empires.

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  195. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Cato: I have no idea who “Chesteron” is or was, but that statement – the one ending “it’s true” – sounds profoundly childlike to me…

    During my time in Tonga I once asked a female friend what it was about Christianity that made it superior to all the other belief systems and religions in the world. She didn’t understood the question at first, so I narrowed it down, and asked what it was about Christianity that made it superior to all the other major religions of the world…her answer? (Delivered with an expression that indicated I was fairly stupid) “Well, because it’s true”.

    I assume Mr Chesteron was far more erudite than a secretary educated in a Tongan high school, but his answer is no more convincing or conclusive to me.

    Right, I’m off outside to kill a goat…

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  196. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    David G.,

    I’m not sure what it is that you hate about me so much but let me add fuel to the fire – courtesy of renowned idiot and superstitious peasant Blaise Pascal.

    1 – Let’s say if me and my ‘ilk’ are wrong. When we die, what will we have lost?

    2- Let’s say that you are wrong? When you die, what will you have lost?

    I’ll take that bet.

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  197. Harriet (4,502 comments) says:

    “…….“ If you think that you can create the ‘perfect NZ society’ without religion…”……Because Christian Europe prior to the Enlightenment was so perfect, wasn’t it Harriet….”

    But Wat – One of the best comments I’ve read on KB about education was put up by you.

    And I quote “If you take away all the funding from private schools, they will then become the preserve of the wealthy and that is not good.”[or words to that effect]

    So what is the differance between public and private schools Wat? Is it the teachings of morals? :cool:

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  198. jims_whare (398 comments) says:

    For all the arguments backwards and forwards about God and Evolution the fact is that we will all find out one way or another when we die.

    Around 1 millisecond after you die it will either be ‘curtains for ever’ or ‘opps I got it wrong/yae God does exist’

    Now death is a divide that science cannot cross or give definite answers about so it comes down to choice and individual decisions to believe or not believe in God.

    The only little sticking point is the nagging doubt that there may be serious long term consequences arising from which way you choose to believe……………….

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  199. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    DG – sorry I meant “Chesterton” of course.

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  200. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Shunda: I have just read your comment above…I have to decide very quickly whether to delete what I have written…I dont think I will…I thank you for what you said, and do not think you are joking

    No, what you said was just fine, it was honest and I appreciate that.

    I actually accept what people say here that religion is a matter of faith not ‘proof’ it has to be, I just think people shouldn’t be so concerned that everyone that professes some sort of faith is hell bent of stoning people to death and condemning ‘sinners’.

    Someone that wants some peace in life just isn’t going to go that violent direction no matter how screwed up people may think their faith is. Some people find the world a hard place to be at times and if a belief in a deity helps them live life in peace then good for them.

    When I am out in the middle of nowhere with my camera or viewing a magnificent sunset, the idea of a creator God that did all this is an intriguing thing to me, and I find peace doing stuff like that. I am sure none of the atheists here would object.

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  201. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    He probably meant G K Chesterton David but he is not quite as bright as his mummy told him he was! :)

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  202. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    But Wat – One of the best comments I’ve read on KB about education was put up by you.

    I don’t doubt that for a second.

    So what is the differance between public and private schools Wat? Is it the teachings of morals?

    No

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  203. Carlos (686 comments) says:

    Yes, let us Westerners tear ourselves apart over our differing benign beliefs while Islam supplants and conquers us.

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  204. SGA (804 comments) says:

    Cato (585) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    1 – Let’s say if me and my ‘ilk’ are wrong. When we die, what will we have lost?

    2- Let’s say that you are wrong? When you die, what will you have lost?

    I’ll take that bet.

    To be sure of winning that wager you’d have to believe in all gods equally, wouldn’t you?

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  205. Cato (1,094 comments) says:

    Not really. There aren’t that many monotheistic religions with clear doctrines about the afterlife and what’s required to get where.

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  206. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    ““Without education, we are in a horrible and deadly danger of taking educated people seriously.”

    Good old G K. Obviously knew you Cato! :)

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  207. SGA (804 comments) says:

    @Cato (586) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    Why limit it monotheistic? As I see it you should be covering all your bases.

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  208. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Cato, you would have to believe that grace of God was (and this earning of grace of God was required) earned by Jesus before anyone was dependent on Jesus for grace of God.

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  209. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Around 1 millisecond after you die it will either be ‘curtains for ever’ or ‘opps I got it wrong/yae God does exist’

    Wrong.

    The choice is not between no god and god. Many religions have multiple gods within the same religion. Buddhists have no god at all.

    It is an artificial choice that there is a christian god or no christian god. They are not the choices.

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  210. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    Never before seen footage. Cato versus a young David Garrett (he’s the bloke with the moustache). :)

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  211. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Right, now that the blood is draining nicely, and he’s facing the right way…

    Cato: Hate you dear boy? Why would I hate an anonymous commenter on a blog who I have never met? Hate is a very strong emotion…. Crikey, I don’t even hate Heather Roy!

    GK Chesterton…he was a writer wasn’t he? Do writers have some great insight denied the rest of us?

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  212. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Cato seems to doubt the existence of Unicorns. I can not reconcile his disbelief with the word of GOD !!!

    Job. 39:9-10 KJV, “Will the unicorn be willing to serve thee, or abide by thy crib? 10Canst thou bind the unicorn with his band in the furrow? or will he harrow the valleys after thee?”

    Psalm 22:21 KJV, “Save me from the lion’s mouth: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.”

    Isaiah 34:7 KJV, “And the unicorns shall come down with them, and the bullocks with the bulls; and their land shall be soaked with blood, and their dust made fat with fatness.”

    See also KJV in Num. 23:22; Nu. 24:8; Deut. 33:17; Psalm 29:6; 92:10.

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  213. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    You must have hated her hairstyle surely David? :)

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  214. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    http://www.newswire.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/HeatherRoyMUG.jpg

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  215. David Garrett (6,343 comments) says:

    Good Lord…a discussion of God, the Universe and the meaning of life stopped by a horrible image of Heather Roy!

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  216. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    Yes it’s funny that. I must just be a party-pooper.

    Heather’s all right too apart from her hair.

    Many a grunt would be happy to share her foxhole when incoming was likely! :)

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  217. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    a discussion of God, the Universe and the meaning of life

    I’ve been waiting for you guys to start talking about that again, but you all kept blathering on about irrelevant horsedung like: can we prove God scientifically and if we can’t, this means he doesn’t exist, doesn’t it. I mean blathering because it was blathering. Who cares? What does this prove? Nothing. Fact is, “scientifically, you can point to a phenomena called religion, that DOES exist, but you can’t explain it scientifically. But it’s there.

    I mean the religious “phenomena” exists, and has existed, for thousands and thousands of years, AS A PHENOMENA. So it’s there. It’s real. So if science can’t replicate this phenomena in the lab, whose fault, using Occam’s Razor, is it most likely to be? Is it possible d’ya think, that science doesn’t yet know how to do it? I mean science is so useless it can’t even make a viable anti-grav propulsion unit. I mean how simple is that? And useless ole science can’t even do a simple thing like that, so how pray tell if the big dumbo we call state-of-the-art science today can’t do a simple thing like that, how do you possibly imagine it has the technology to analyse the human soul?

    And you use that for the argument in the most important choice anyone ever makes in their life?

    Crikey.

    Lord, forgive them for they know not what they do.

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  218. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    I once lit some hydrogen in a test tube that I made from something and something else Reid.

    Doe’s this skill give me any chance of knowing the face of God? :)

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  219. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    Doe’s this skill give me any chance of knowing the face of God?

    Ecc 7:17: “Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish: why shouldest thou die before thy time?”

    So no, it probably wouldn’t Johnboy. Sorry about that, but there we are. :)

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  220. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    Gee whiz Reid. If I stopped being a silly little naughty boy I might as well be chatting to God! :)

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  221. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    You could replace the word -God- with Thor, or the Tooth Fairy, in all these debates and still make the same arguments.

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  222. nasska (10,623 comments) says:

    You’ll be on the road to redemption before tea JB. :)

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  223. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    Just as well I never have a drink till after tea then nasska! :)

    http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSC3ynmkN0khzaAFavHuJfhFMCrh4TDqaqfAIFyIUU83hKKLtKC

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  224. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    You could replace the word -God- with Thor, or the Tooth Fairy, in all these debates and still make the same arguments.

    You could Kea but the last I heard Thor or the Tooth Fairy didn’t come with an operating manual to explain things quite as well as my religion does, so if you want to play around with a childish toy in respect of the most important question in your life feel free, but I prefer the adult version.

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  225. Griff (6,709 comments) says:

    If you take the old testament out because of fishboys new covenant and ignore the religious mumbo jumbo of Paul and assorted other nobs, you are left with a position that is only defined as the humanist teaching of fishboy a philosopher.

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  226. nasska (10,623 comments) says:

    Thor & the Tooth Fairy might be a bit of a stretch Reid but I managed to get you some of the good oil on unicorns. :)

    Ref: https://www.dropbox.com/s/7g6h5k8a1ljsz3a/unicorn%202.jpg

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  227. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    (crowd)…”Griff is the Messiah! Griff is the Messiah!”

    (Griff’s mum)….” No he’s not, he’s just a naughty little Welsh boy!” :)

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  228. Griff (6,709 comments) says:

    I thought you said You were god.
    Griff would much prefer to be the devil much more entertaining company.
    No whinging about bum sex for starters.

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  229. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    ‘No whinging about bum sex for starters.’

    Do you prefer to receive rather than to give then Griff? :)

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  230. Griff (6,709 comments) says:

    In the lords infinite wisdom he gave man a variety in orifice as well as one of species.
    Me thinks the calf will not tell.

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  231. Johnboy (14,911 comments) says:

    Tell or not Griff, you have just gained a lot of funny new fans here on KB! :)

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  232. krazykiwi (9,189 comments) says:

    I’m surprised the level for “pure” creationism is so high, ie that one in four said they think humanity is less than 10,000 years old.

    I’m not. Option C conflates two ideas – that God created mankind pretty much as we know it today, and earth is ‘young’.

    I would decline to answer the survey on the basis that the author should have evolved their classification model a little more intelligently.

    Oh, and to the comment upthread about this being troll bait on a religious holiday. Absolutely agree.

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  233. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    the last I heard Thor or the Tooth Fairy didn’t come with an operating manual to explain things quite as well as my religion does

    It certainly explains the 6,000 year old Earth, for example.

    Oh, wait…

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  234. Ed Snack (1,734 comments) says:

    What can one add to so many comments ? But I’d have to agree with several others, that Gavin White is excessively ignorant of what “Intelligent Design” actually is, or he’s getting a little early for 1 April. Unfortunately that ruins the survey. One can believe a “god directed” evolution whilst totally scorning what ID represents.

    Of course Gavin could be simply coining a name in his use of ID, but to use a term with a well understood meaning as he then has done is, to put it mildly, either dishonest or foolish.
    Hey, but great comment bait. I think David is trying to get back the #1 status for Kiwiblog.

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  235. BlairM (2,286 comments) says:

    Wow, long thread. I’ll be honest, I haven’t read most of it.

    I believe in the creation account of Genesis broadly, of that much I am sure. Do I believe it literally? I don’t know. Is the Theory of Evolution accurate? I don’t know. People thought Isaac Newton was pretty clever for hundreds of years until Einstein and Planck came along. Science changes. Personally I think there are unanswered philosophical issues around the Theory of Evolution. But I am open to anything. I believe that if it is accurate, then that does not necessarily make a fraud of Genesis, and both can be true, though obviously not in a completely literal sense.

    I have faith in God because I see Him at work in my life and in the lives of others, and I see things happen that some might call coincidence, but I don’t. My faith isn’t necessarily predicated on the literal truth of Genesis. As Denis Denuto would say “It’s the vibe of the thing”.

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  236. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    It certainly explains the 6,000 year old Earth, for example.

    Indeed it does wat, as I explained above.

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  237. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    You don’t have to be stupid to believe in God. But you are.

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  238. Reid (15,917 comments) says:

    You don’t have to be stupid to believe in God. But you are.

    Considering all the brilliant thinkers who’ve professed their belief in God over the centuries, you’d have to be stupid not to believe in God. Unless you rate yourself against them of course.

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  239. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    I would suspect that the people who believe in Genesis creationism story also believe in an apocalyptic end of the world as outlined in the last book Revelation.

    A little too subtle for most of them is the Hebrew word reshit, confused by some with creation itself it is more akin to a new view of the world or a new world order (religion is about changing the way people see the world).

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  240. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Is the coward, who downticked without explanation, an atheist or a Christian?

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  241. jonno1 (79 comments) says:

    I admit I’ve only skimmed this thread, so my apologies in advance if what follows has already been said.

    Firstly, while the three options in the poll broadly cover the field, it’s not correct to categorise option A as intelligent design which is a creationist construct so actually represents option C. Option A is more correctly “Christian” or, if you prefer, “Religious”. But provided the survey itself didn’t use those summary terms then the results are probably a fair reflection of the respondents’ views.

    With that caveat, I would answer “A”. This is effectively saying that God is the creator but uses evolution as part of his toolkit. This is not inconsistent with science because science simply looks at the facts (or should do!), and is not incompatible with faith, it’s simply different.

    The simple reason why I would answer A is that science is very clear on the existence of certain forms of evolution. For example, almost nobody disputes microevolution (ie adaptation), while the human genome project strongly indicates the existence of macroevolution at least to some extent (ie step changes). There is no scientific basis, however, for the concept of chemical evolution (the primeval swamp theory), that’s more a faith thing held by some atheists, and leads inevitably to answer B.

    To elaborate a bit on the human genome project (disclaimer: I’m no expert in this field!), our DNA is the record of our genetic past. Each of our cells has 46 chromosomes, each of which contains a single DNA molecule which in turn consists of chains comprised of four building blocks (bases): A, G, T and C. There are from tens to hundreds of millions of these bases in the DNA molecule of a single chromosome, adding up to 3 billion or so in total.

    The DNA strand is broken up into segments, or genes, of which there are about 30,000. Additionally there are up to 20,000 damaged genes, or pseudogenes, which can be matched to other species. Long story short, the identified presence of certain gene sequences in fossil remains proves beyond doubt that humans have common ancestors with certain other primates such as old world monkeys (eg baboons).

    As for the age of the earth, cosmologists estimate it in the range 5-10 billion years. Creationists would claim that it just “appears” old, ie that God somehow simulated this great age, like on a movie set. This would mean that all ruins and cultural artefacts of human existence are untrue, God just made them all up. It follows logically that Jesus’ birth, death (celebrated today!) and resurrection (celebrated on Sunday) didn’t happen after all. So you can’t be both a Christian and a Creationist, it just makes no sense. In other words, a “young earther” cannot, by definition be a “believer”.

    A comment on intelligent design. This, sadly, is another desperate attempt by some unthinking Christians to somehow “prove” creation to the exclusion of evolution. The usual argument is irreducible complexity as evidenced by the flagellum of the bacterium Escherichia coli (a kind of outboard motor, or propeller). The argument is that if any one element is removed, the flagellum can’t work, therefore it could not have evolved to its present form. Unfortunately this argument fails to recognise that if a plausible explanation or alternative theory can be developed then the original theory fails. Well here’s one: the theory presupposes that the flagellum developed in one fell swoop, as it couldn’t have developed in a linear fashion. But it’s quite plausible that two or more separate functional proteins combined at some point to form the flagellum. This is called co-evolution or co-adaptation. I’m not saying this is necessarily so, just that it’s a plausible explanation, so the creationist theory falls down.

    So why am I, as a Christian, knocking down some “Christian” arguments? Well, put simply, when I became a Christian I didn’t leave my brain at the door. Those with weird and wonderful beliefs who also call themselves Christian do themselves a great disservice. In one sense that actually doesn’t matter, as no-one becomes a Christian through argument, it is an act of faith, which only after the event is validated by experience. Christianity can never invalidate science although science can, of course, get it wrong (as can “the church”), but ultimately the truth will out.

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  242. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    jonno1, the ultimate question is whether what we/science would see as the outcome of a random process could have been predicted. Such as that sentient beings would emerge in the universe once it was established and these sentient beings would have dominion in their planetary realm. If so, then if one poses that the universe had a source, then that source sought to create such sentient beings.

    The bible writers were just posing that a Creator God made existence/creation – they could only imagine an order to this process – first light, then separation of light from land, land from water (light and water and land to grow food), plant food habitat before eater, eaten from eater (from land or sea resource) etc.

    The idea of a creator God is associated with dominion – thus only occurred about 10,000 years ago when we established the ability to grow crops and domesticate animals – establish supremacy over the habitat.

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  243. Tom Jackson (2,458 comments) says:

    That is why I look to the arguments of the greats to help me make my mind up. To cite them is less arrogant that assuming one’s own experiences and reasoning constitute incontrovertible arguments.

    Those arguments are of mainly historical interest. Philosophy has moved on since then. I should know, as I am an actual and certified expert in the subject (for what it’s worth), even if a bit rusty.

    The cosmological argument doesn’t really prove much at all, even if sound. Admitting there is a first cause is to admit very little about the nature of that cause. In any case, the intelligibility of metaphysical “causes” is also questionable. Causation obviously makes sense within the domain of the natural sciences. It’s not clear that it can be deployed meaningfully outside that. Ludwig Wittgenstein was very alert to these sorts of subtle errors.

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  244. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    jonno1, there is a big assumption implicit in your post.

    The available options to consider are not:

    1. Science.

    2. Your god.

    3. A combination of the two.

    There are hundreds of gods and belief systems. You have no reason to assume yours is the only right one, due to an accident of birth. You could just as easily have been born into a Hindu society.

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  245. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I am even seeing the atheists fall into the sorts of assumptions I addressed above.

    Creation, evolution, natural science, all have nothing at all to do with proof of a god. Even if it could be demonstrated that all accepted science was totally wrong, it would not prove the existence of god and especially not just one particular god.

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  246. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Tom Jackson, the argument just goes back another stage – ID or natural process within the universe or ID or natural process in the causation.

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  247. Jimmy Smits (246 comments) says:

    Reid (13,262) Says:
    March 29th, 2013 at 8:22 pm

    Considering all the brilliant thinkers who’ve professed their belief in God over the centuries, you’d have to be stupid not to believe in God. Unless you rate yourself against them of course.

    What a dumbass argument. A lot of the brilliant thinkers in history were also racist and misogynist simply because it was what society believed in. There are also a lot of dumb thinkers that believe in God in mental institutions, far more than brilliant thinkers, so looks like you’re the retarded one.

    Only on Kiwiblog is there such a significant portion of retarded Christians. It’s great that the number of Christians in society is decreasing because I’d hate to have to put up with dumbasses like you who are stupid enough to think the Earth is 6,000 years old in my daily life outside of Kiwiblog.

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  248. slijmbal (1,210 comments) says:

    “People thought Isaac Newton was pretty clever for hundreds of years until Einstein and Planck came along. Science changes.”

    Newton was and still is correct in a non-relativistic and macro environment. Still pretty clever.

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  249. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    Only on Kiwiblog is there such a significant portion of retarded Christians.

    I have to disagree with the ‘retarded’ accusation. Gullible and deluded but no, I don’t consider any of them retarded.

    In fact I envy them in some ways. Having something to belief in, excuse the wrongs with, having a set of precise rules to follow, and being able to deal with grief by believing you will see that person again, makes life a whole heap easier – reality can be painful – fantasy has always provided a much happier life (but then so does chocolate)

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  250. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Considering all the brilliant thinkers who’ve professed their belief in God over the centuries, you’d have to be stupid not to believe in God. Unless you rate yourself against them of course.

    Thanks for proving my point, Reid.

    In fact I DO place myself above those brilliant thinkers, because I am standing on the shoulders of giants.

    I know more about physics than Isaac Newton. More about evolution than Darwin. And more about astronomy than Galileo.

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  251. Jimmy Smits (246 comments) says:

    Judith (1,868) Says:
    March 30th, 2013 at 10:02 am

    I envy them in some ways. Having something to belief in, excuse the wrongs with, having a set of precise rules to follow, and being able to deal with grief by believing you will see that person again, makes life a whole heap easier – reality can be painful – fantasy has always provided a much happier life (but then so does chocolate)

    Meh, just because you see Hare Krishnas in the street clapping and singing and asking you for compulsory donations if you want one of their shitty books does not make me envy them, it makes me feel sorry for them that they get so happy clappy over something so stupid, reminding me of retarded adults who will laugh and clap their hands if you give them crayons. See here for examples:

    Link: http://www.youtube watch?v=RFCjKDKK6xY

    “A Korean Christian church with its members exhibiting convulsing and psychotic behavior triggered by their love for Jesus. Please note these women are not having spiritual orgasms, they are dramatically exercising to release the inner demons created by Satan.”

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  252. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Considering all the brilliant thinkers who’ve professed their belief in God over the centuries, you’d have to be stupid not to believe in God.

    You are talking about the pre-scientific age.

    Those people – clever though they were – believed all manner of what we now know to be complete and often laughable nonsense.

    Basically, everything they believed was totally wrong.

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  253. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    Jimmy Smits (232) Says:
    March 30th, 2013 at 10:33 am
    —————————————–

    I didn’t watch the video – but my comment was not about the groups you talk about, but the ability to ‘excuse’ so many of life’s negatives – for example it would be so much easier to handle the death of a person by believing they were now an ‘angel’ sitting on a puffy cloud – than a corpse rotting in the ground.

    Religion has its benefits – I envy that they are able to exclude such pain by believing in what they do. It is similar to the childhood belief in Santa Claus and the delight that brings so many children – can you remember how good it felt!

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  254. Jimmy Smits (246 comments) says:

    Judith (1,870) Says:
    March 30th, 2013 at 10:48 am

    I didn’t watch the video – but my comment was not about the groups you talk about, but the ability to ‘excuse’ so many of life’s negatives – for example it would be so much easier to handle the death of a person by believing they were now an ‘angel’ sitting on a puffy cloud – than a corpse rotting in the ground.

    I don’t see how that is a positive, because with the belief that you’ll see your Christian family and friends again after death, also comes with it the belief that your non-Christian family and friends are burning in torment permanently in Hell. That is a lot worse than knowing that they are a corpse rotting in the ground. Obviously, there will always be sadists who are the exception to the rule, such as Andrei and kowtow who are quite happy to see homosexuals burning in Hell, when they express their glee in the gay threads about them dying of AIDS etc.

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  255. Jimmy Smits (246 comments) says:

    I guess though, your comment is similar to saying you envy a retarded person who thinks life is happy clappy because they don’t know any better. You’d rather not have your level of intelligence and understanding of reality, and be able to be extremely happy when you play with crayons like people with downs syndrome.

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  256. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    Evolution is supported by multiple lines of evidence which all agree in cross reference and is the cornerstone of modern biology. For 150 years evolution had stood in front of rigorous scientific investigation and enquiry and passed with flying colours which is why it remains today as one of the most well understood scientific principles.

    Evolution is a fact .

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  257. Harriet (4,502 comments) says:

    Jimmy Smokes#

    “….Only on Kiwiblog is there such a significant portion of retarded Christians. It’s great that the number of Christians in society is decreasing because I’d hate to have to put up with dumbasses like you who are stupid enough to think the Earth is 6,000 years old in my daily life outside of Kiwiblog…”

    Really?

    Sometimes the liberal position in New Zealand argues for greater internationalism and cosmopolitanism in our outlook. If we were to take that seriously we would take religion more seriously. There is a link to highlight between faith and fertility. At its simplest, people of religious belief have far more children than people without religious belief. Not only is the majority of the world committed to a religious view of life, this majority is increasing.

    If we want to be Asia literate we need to understand Islam in Indonesia, Catholicism in The Philippines, Protestant Christianity in South Korea and the extraordinary dynamism of the underground Christian movement in China.

    Or as the late Irving Kristol said:

    The arguement between religion and science is pointless: Science is where you have an hypthesis and then you gather evidence to support it. Whereas religion is a belief, and a system which you live by. And this is why adults teach their children to pray instead of getting them to search for evidence to support the existance of God.

    Militant atheism is a destructive force because it seeks to annihilate, or at least cut society off from, the great store of human knowledge, expertise and wisdom embodied in the Christian tradition.The Christian tradition embodies: its wisdom, its urbanity, its range and depth.

    Why do you favour such ignorance Jimmy?

    You appear to have the materialist inability to grasp, or even to concede the intellectual substance of, the tradition of metaphysics going back to the ancient Greeks.

    Jimmy, you are just another who believes “The Tooth Fairy doesn’t exist – so everything else you Christians say must also be invalid.” – The hallmark of an idiot! :cool:

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  258. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Hi Harriet,
    thank you for such an excellent post. I totally agree with your main points.
    I would say that it is interesting information that only 45% of New Zealanders believe in pure evolution with slightly more believing that God guided the process or that God created humanity in its present form around 10,000 years ago. Given that we are bombarded day after day with the evolutionary worldview it does say something that still only 45% of people really believe in it?

    As for myself I looked at this question back in the 1990′s. I was already a Christian then but had no particular views one way or another about evolution. So I read the stuff from Dawkins and the other main atheists of the time. I also read the other side, particularly the creationist view. One particular book I can recommend is “evolution a theory in crisis” by Michael Denton. He does a good job of pointing out all of the holes in evolutionary theory both conceptual and evidential.

    I am now of the view that evolution has not occurred. I would encourage everybody to read both sides of the story. Much as we do during a trial, we hear from the defence and the prosecution and then make up our minds.

    Having cleared away evolution I am of the view that the Bible lays out how we began in Genesis 1 to 3. And I am quite comfortable with the earth being thousands of years old. The millions of years are only necessary if you believe in evolutionary theory.

    We can see the evidence of God from the things that have been made. All around us is design. That’s because “in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”.

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  259. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    That’s unfortunate Scott because evolution did in fact occur and is still occurring. It is certainly not a theory in crisis and is more widely understood than the theory of gravity.

    BTW I am extremely well versed in the creationist literature.

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  260. RichardX (321 comments) says:

    The lack of intellectual and scientific rigour displayed by those who think the theory of evolution has been disproved is what I find scary

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  261. pq (728 comments) says:

    I read an article the other day, in Dominion Post I think, I can’t find it now,
    but it stated the percentage of Christians in New Zealand was dropping steadily and has been since the world war 2.

    I was once sitting next to an elderly Texan couple on the Sunset Express, [ New Orleans to LA ] and the old lady said to me
    ” look at those beautiful mountains, and that beautiful sunset, sure evidence of God’s handiwork”
    I said, I wasn’t so sure about that , not the mountains, but the God part.
    She replied frostily.,, ” you are sitting at the wrong dining table leave now’

    I called over the waiter and told him the Christians were being broadminded again, and the old lady cursed atheists as the Waiter found me a new table where thank God the bible belt was absent.

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  262. pq (728 comments) says:

    the fact is that Christians believe fantasy, and unable to understand pure clear unequivocal science.

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  263. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Given that we are bombarded day after day with the evolutionary worldview it does say something that still only 45% of people really believe in it?

    Hopefully it says that evolution isnt a world view, its a scientific fact.

    The millions of years are only necessary if you believe in evolutionary theory.

    Actually, millions of years are only necessary if you believe the observable, provable facts as presented by reality.

    The ONLY reason to believe that the Earth is a few thousand years old is to support previous religious teachings.

    That is one of the horrors of religion; it requires ignorance. The thing about the God of the Gaps fallacy, is that it promotes efforts to increase the size of the gaps.

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  264. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    TheContrarian (673) Says:
    March 30th, 2013 at 12:52 pm
    That’s unfortunate Scott because evolution did in fact occur and is still occurring. It is certainly not a theory in crisis and is more widely understood than the theory of gravity.

    I was just thinking about that very thing today while walking to the market.

    No one doubts gravity exists, yet few could tell you what causes it. It is accepted fact but the explanation is actually really “out there” and hard to imagine.

    Evolution is a very simple explanation that appeals to common sense, yet people doubt it ! We people are funny creatures :)

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  265. jonno1 (79 comments) says:

    @SPC 12.23am: You’ve raised a couple of important points that I didn’t touch upon (my post was long enough already…), namely what distinguishes mankind from other animals, and when did this come about? I’m assuming that your use of the term “sentient beings” is code for our spirit, as distinct from body and soul. You may well be correct that agriculture etc dates back only 6-10,000 years, which in turn may suggest a timeframe for when God breathed his spirit into mankind. But why some Christians extrapolate that to an argument against evolution when the scientific evidence is overwhelming is beyond me! To be fair, until I studied the subject in some depth I was also inclined to the popular view that creation and evolution were somehow polar opposites. In my defence, that was at a time when the science of genetics had not advanced as much as it has in the last couple of decades.

    @Kea 12.32am: The context of this thread is the evolution poll which used the term God with a capital G, ie the Christian God. But you’ve reminded me of another weakness of the intelligent design theory which is that even if the theory were true, who’s to say that the creator is the Christian God? (which I think is your point, and a different but valid discussion).

    @Scott 12.31pm: Re the medical geneticist Michael Denton, the book you mention was written in 1986. You might like to now read his 1998 book Nature’s Destiny: How the Laws of Biology Reveal Purpose in the Universe. His change of heart came about through more recent studies of DNA. Put simply, it’s now known that the genomes of all organisms are closely clustered in a tiny region of DNA sequence space forming a tree of related sequences that can readily be inter-converted. Previously it was believed that there were sharp discontinuities between different organs, adaptions and organisms, which provided support for the creationist theory. That particular argument for creationism is no longer valid.

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  266. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    A list of all things that “require” the earth to be millions of years old.

    1. Biology
    2. Chemistry
    3. Geology
    4. Astronomy
    5. Physics
    6. Paleontology

    And now a list of things that “require” the earth to be thousands of years old.

    1. Specific religious teachings. Not all religions, just one that claims that their human written book contains the full history of the world, but that fails to mention dinosaurs, because, you know, they’re kind of boring, right?

    Which side do you think has all the smart people and which side has all the stupid ones?

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  267. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    jonno1– Regarding the book by Denton being written in 1986 – I would say so what? We have been told for 150 years that evolution is a fact. We cannot rely on the latest and greatest to prove that. It is supposed to be already proven.
    I cannot agree with you that he has gone back on his previous book. Rather he is a man committed to a naturalistic worldview who is struggling with the evidence of design. Indeed the central proposition of his new book appears to be this –”the cosmos is a specially designed whole with life and mankind as its fundamental goal and purpose, a whole in which all facets of reality, from the size of galaxies to the thermal capacity of water, have their meaning and explanation in this central fact.”

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  268. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    And there you have it people. The ignorant theist says, it doesnt matter what is discovered or learned now. They will only believe truths that are presented whole and complete from the outset. Essentially, unless your “science” has the audacity to lie as greatly as my religion, I wont believe it.

    That’s why theists are stupid. They start stupid and cannot be unstupided.

    #finetuneduniversefallacy

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  269. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    As Denton points out in his 1986 book – the problems of evolution are not just evidential but they are conceptual.
    Take the whale. It is believed to be descended from some mammal on land that walked back into the sea. But conceptually think about it? What was it doing while its back legs fused together and became a tail? And how did it happen to evolve a blowhole on the top? Like did it just lay there on the beach with its back legs fused together while waiting for a blowhole to evolve? How would survival of the fittest work in that case?

    You see I think the whale seems incredibly well designed. Kind of like it was made that way?

    It is interesting to me to watch programmes like David Attenborough and the world of plants. He regularly says things like the bat feeds of this particular flower which emits a smell of rotting fruit which the bat loves. He regularly says things like this particular insect only goes to this particular plant. There is so much design all around him. Unfortunately for him evolution has such a hold on his mind that he just cannot see it.

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  270. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Kimble my good chap, try not to be the angriest man on the Internet. I think Griff has already got that award covered. My point is that evolution is supposed to be a proven theory. It need not rely on someone’s latest book and latest discovery. It is supposed to be as proven as gravity.
    My reason for saying this is that whenever we talk about evolution’s shortcomings, someone has just discovered something that refutes that. Evolution is supposed to be as proven as gravity. Therefore it is as a theory complete and true, with no possibility that it is false.

    And don’t be rude in your replies. I am sick of atheists calling other people stupid. It does get tiresome after a while.

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  271. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    How would survival of the fittest work in that case?

    Thats a good question. But your answer of “God did it” is a stupid one.

    You creationists are always asking “how could THIS have evolved” and “how could THAT feature evolve”, and then when you are provided with answers you go on to ask “but how could this OTHER thing evolve?”

    Just because we dont know how EVERY evolutionary step went, doesnt mean we evolution is false. Just like because we can’t write down every prime numer, doesnt mean prime numbers dont exist.

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  272. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    PQ – apologies for the lovely Texan couple that cursed you out. That doesn’t seem very nice. If you are ever in town come and have morning tea. I will be nice to you and even shout you a cup of coffee. Maybe even a muffin!

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  273. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Evolution is MORE proven than gravity.

    We dont know how gravity works. We DO know how evolution works. You are ignoring the evidence because it conflicts with what you WANT to believe. And given the chance you would retard the advancement of human knowledge to remain in your comfortable zone of ignorance.

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  274. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    But Kimble it does look designed, designed for water? So the difficulty is conceptual. It is hard to conceive how this could have come about, this transition from land mammal to seagoing mammal.
    The other difficulty is the fossil record. Where are the hopeful monsters that got stuck on land with their legs fused together? There should be more hopeful monsters if that is all driven by random chance. Where are the transitions from land mammal back to the sea? Actually the more you look at the theory of evolution the more stupid the theory seems? Just saying.

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  275. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Thanks for your reply Kimble. That use of capital FONT really sews up the argument for me. When one is shouting it’s usually not a good sign.
    I am reminded of the hack preacher – who wrote in his preaching notes, “point weak, shout louder!”

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  276. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Evolution is supposed to be as proven as gravity.

    Scott, evolution is better proven than gravity.

    I have long been an atheist, but used to doubt evolution. That all changed when I found out how it really works. It is remarkably simple. Even the Catholic Church supports it now days.

    Read one of Dawkin’s books, or watch some of the great vids on youtube. Of course none of this proves, or disproves, the existence of God.

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  277. jonno1 (79 comments) says:

    @Kimble 2.14pm: “God of the gaps” – I haven’t heard that term in years! IIRC it’s based on the idea that the bigger the gaps in scientific knowledge the greater the proof of God’s existence. But I’m sure you’ve already gathered that as a Christian I have little time for those Christians who ignore science! My view is that science, properly understood and applied, supports Christianity rather than undermining it. I take it that you are either an atheist or an agnostic; all I will say to that is please don’t conflate religion and Christianity. The former is a social construct, the latter is a relationship.

    Further to my comments on the flagellum, there’s an almost unreadable paper at http://talkreason.org/articles/flagellum.cfm which demonstrates how the flagellum may have evolved. Just scroll down to the figures at the end, otherwise your eyes will glaze over.

    @Scott 2.36pm: Fair enough, I agree that Denton is still somewhat ambivalent. His position is probably most simply defined as “directed evolution” (based on facts such as the uniqueness of the lobster eye or the avian lung), while his discussion is more about the mechanism of evolution than the fact of evolution.

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  278. jonno1 (79 comments) says:

    Whoops, only “mechanism” and “facts” were supposed to be italicised.

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  279. SGA (804 comments) says:

    jonno1 (51) Says:
    March 30th, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    @Kimble 2.14pm: “God of the gaps” – I haven’t heard that term in years! IIRC it’s based on the idea that the bigger the gaps in scientific knowledge the greater the proof of God’s existence.

    Or more generally to use gaps in scientific knowledge as evidence of a god’s existence. So the argument over an old universe and earth or evolution may seem lost, but only a god can explain abiogenesis. Contemporary physics may have a working model of the creation (and expansion) of the universe, but only a god can explain the big bang itself. That sort of thing.

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  280. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    IIRC it’s based on the idea that the bigger the gaps in scientific knowledge the greater the proof of God’s existence.

    Actually its origin is as a description of the creationist line of argument that goes like this “Of course there is a God, how else can you explain X.” And then when the explanation for X is provided by scientific enquiry, the creationist ignores that and asks about the NEXT thing science has yet to explain. And so on, and so on.

    It is similar to the argument from ignorance, which we have also seen here.

    And BTW Scott, the use of capitals on single words is to highlight their importance in the sentence. Its not the same as sentences written in ALLCAPS. And just like evolution isnt a world view*, capitalisation isnt a font.

    *The other reason why creationists are stupid is that they think that anything that contradicts the teaching of their religion, must be another religion. Your religion is a world view, because you observe the world through it. Evolution is reality being observed.

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  281. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    But conceptually think about it? What was it doing while its back legs fused together and became a tail? And how did it happen to evolve a blowhole on the top? Like did it just lay there on the beach with its back legs fused together while waiting for a blowhole to evolve?

    http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/evograms_03

    Note the example of nostrils moving back up the skull to become the blow hole in the modern dolphin.

    Note also the brief discussion of the vestigial limbs.

    There’s even a video:

    How come you are not interested enough to find out the answers, Scott?

    Actually, we both know the answer: you have no interest in facts or truth. You prefer comfortable, reassuring denial.

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  282. Judith (7,504 comments) says:

    This thread is a wonderful example of the ‘dumbing down of society’. Religious institution, once the leader in knowledge and education don’t seem to have ‘evolved’ past the invention of the wheel (no doubt by the devil as I don’t remember God laying claim to it). If you stagnate long enough you rot – organised religion is at risk. Either the big guy provides a ‘newer’ new testament soon, or fulfills his/her promise of ‘judgement day’, because the way it looks to the ‘sinner’ Christianity’s steering right up the dinosaurs butt.

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  283. Griff (6,709 comments) says:

    wat dabney (2,561) Says:
    March 30th, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    How come you are not interested enough to find out the answers,

    Actually, we both know the answer: you have no interest in facts or truth. You prefer comfortable, reassuring denial.

    :lol:

    http://watchingthedeniers.wordpress.com/2010/09/23/the-age-of-unreason-creationism-and-climate-change-denial-travel-hand-in-hand/

    climate change denial is the “bastard” child of creationism.

    In the US creationists have argued against the science for decades, claiming there was “no real evidence” and that evolution as a “liberal conspiracy”. So effective are their attacks on science that 50% of the US population thinks the world is less than 10,000 years old and distrust mainstream science.

    Climate change denial fell upon this fertile, anti-science ground.

    Creationism has provided the template for the denial movement, as their strategies are almost identical. Generations of Americans, Australians and people around the world have been taught to distrust science, and place their faith in fast-talking intellectual hucksters.

    Is it no surprise that the Herald Sun, home to Andrew Bolt, gave over two full pages to disgraced former footballer Gary Ablett to attack evolution?

    Isn’t any wonder that Christopher Monckton, the pompous self-styled ”Lord” speaks the language to Creationism?

    Are we not surprised that (now former) Family First Senator Steve Fielding not only doubts climate change, but also rejects evolutionary theory?

    Is there not a pattern emerging?

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  284. jonno1 (79 comments) says:

    Welcome back Griff! I was getting worried that Kiwiblog’s resident warmist had departed for good. BTW you forgot to remind us that all denialists (aka sceptics) are conspiracy theorists as well as creationists. See http://joannenova.com.au/2013/03/lewandowsky-cook-claim-78000-skeptics-could-see-conspiracy-survey-at-cooks-site-where-he-didnt-even-put-up-a-link/ Oh crap, that means I will have to become both a creationist and a conspiracy theorist.

    As an aside Griff, I’ve studied your posts over time and still can’t decide whether you mean what you say or have a wicked sense of humour and enjoy winding people up. I sincerely hope it’s the latter.

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  285. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Thanks Wat my dear fellow for your reply on whale evolution. Love the video. But still a few tiny problems. The land mammal just walked in the ocean and started swimming? And the right bits just evolved, kind of like Transformers? And in response to the environment. The animal liked swimming so evolution provided the necessary equipment? I think someone called Lamarck postulated that theory but no one believes it now. So the video is a possible reconstruction of how evolution might have occurred but honestly do you think it’s scientific evidence? The link to the other site doesn’t attempt to reconstruct whale evolution because it begins with the statement that none of these animals are the ancestor of any other. So it’s hardly hard evidence my friend, more of a group of scientists trying valiantly to find evidence for a process that seems very elusive. Gravity? Plenty of evidence. Evolution? Not so much.

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  286. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Kimble you keep calling me stupid and it’s very annoying. Try and control yourself. I am sure you would never talk to me like that face to face.
    To come back at you that evolution is reality being observed I say to you nonsense! What evolution are you or anybody currently observing? I would suggest to you that evolution is not occurring and you will be unable to supply a single credible example of it.

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  287. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    Scott, evolutionist supported by genetics, morphology, palentology and the fossil record, biology and chemistry. There is no branch of science it isn’t compatible with and has been demonstrated in nature and in the lab many times before. It has withstood all enquiry over 150 years and remains as the only answer to the diversity of life as we see it today. It is falsifiable, observable, predictive and repeatable. The universe cannot possibly be any less than 14 billion years old and the earth is about 4 billion years old. All lines of evidence point to this from distant starlight to ice layering in Antartica (which points to a limit of the earth being at least 70000 years old. Creationists have never produced a single piece of inncontrovable evidence to suggest otherwise so they lie, distort and ignore everything and anything that says otherwise.

    They are lying to you.

    And if you think evolution hasn’t been observed then I suggest you use google to see what you are missing. Nylonase is a goo place to start.

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  288. cha (3,779 comments) says:

    Sorted.

    http://seventeenbree.hubpages.com/hub/Three-Reasons-Why-The-Bible-Is-True-And-Christianity-Isnt-Just-Made-Up#

    Reason #3 – The Sun Burns, But There Isn’t Any Oxygen in Space?

    Let’s take a moment to appreciate our devoted scientists.

    Scientists have proven that the sun burns.
    Scientists have proven things need two things to burn: Carbon Dioxide and Oxygen.
    Scientists have proven there is no Oxygen in Space.

    Then why does the sun burn. The sun burns because God put it there, God created it and it has a special job: to keep us warm and give us hope.

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  289. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    Cha, that is one of the dumbest things I have ever read.

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  290. cha (3,779 comments) says:

    But ya gotta lurve twenty first century America.

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  291. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Scott, you ARE stupid, because stupid is as stupid does. And claiming that evolution is nonsense and then demonstrating that you don’t know very much about evolution (I half expect you to say dogs can’t become cats) and that you havent even taken the first step to educate yourself is doing stupid.

    But I wasnt even talking about observable evolution. I was saying that evolution is not a world view, religion is, and thats why you view the world/reality/evolution through your world view of religion, while I dont view religion through the world view of evolution.

    I am not an atheist just because I believe in the reality of evolution, and I dont believe in evolution just because I am an atheist. Whereas you dont believe in the reality of evolution, you discount all evidence, and prefer to believe something for which there is nowhere near the level of critical inquiry and which is at odds with so much of what we know, simply because you want to believe in one particular version of God and religious lore.

    For the record, I am an atheist because of stupid, incompetent theists who were used to unthinking obedience and tried to sell me some obvious bullshit that got me questioning the religion I was raised in.

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  292. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    jonno1, my use of the term sentient beings was made more to refer to a kind with dominion on a planet and capable of adapting the habitat for its purposes. In that sense mankind can re-create the planet – say by cultivating crops and domesticating flocks and then building specialised centres such as urban environments. We began this about 10,000 years ago and our conceptualising man as created in the image of God could have begun around this time because of this.

    As to whether (to use a Buddhist term) this offers a connection between our consciousness of God and the presence of God (or simply our consciousness and our consciousness of God – our capacity for faith and aspiration for an ideal), this is the field where personal self awareness and self improvement can connect to externality, whether co-operation with the group in community activism or religion.

    The philosophical case for God, is that there is room and purpose. As cause of existence and restraint on abuse of power.

    As I noted earlier, the Hebrew word reshit is used in Genesis, it does not mean creation in the sense that creationists presume. It was not until mankind could imagine that they were in dominion on earth, that we could conceive that they were in the image of God. Thus the then saw the world anew. This is the same message, somewhat hidden in Revelation, we can remake the world in our image, we have the dominion, it’s just that we have to go the right way about it. Bury the beasts (misrule) of the past and move on.

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  293. TheContrarian (1,073 comments) says:

    Evolution =/= atheism

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  294. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    And just so you can’t say I am avoiding the challenge: http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/speciation.html

    You should be able to find a couple dozen examples there.

    But dont bother responding on this because, as I said, it wasn’t the point I was making.

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  295. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    I would suggest to you that evolution is not occurring and you will be unable to supply a single credible example of it.

    Actually evolution happens and can be observed in bacteria. The fact that antibiotic resistent strains are emerging is a direct result of natural selection at work.

    There are also larger species where evolution can be observed, but as you need multiple generations to actually observe it, you need species with shorter generation spans.

    Here’s a list of observable evolution.

    http://listverse.com/2011/11/19/8-examples-of-evolution-in-action/

    Also it comes down to the definition of observable. You seme to think it is merely “seeing with your own eyes”. But evolutionary theory makes predictions which then can be verified in a number of fields. Fossil records in geology, developments in biology, in genetics, etc.

    In fact it would be pretty easy to falsify evolution, but it has withstood every single test for the last 150 years. It is doubtful that there is another scientific theory that has undergone as much such scrutiny as evolution has.

    The only way to say you can’t observe evolution is that you don’t want to see it.

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  296. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    The land mammal just walked in the ocean and started swimming? And the right bits just evolved, kind of like Transformers? And in response to the environment. The animal liked swimming so evolution provided the necessary equipment?

    No.

    Perhaps you should actually take the time to learn something about evolution? Then you wouldn’t say such ignorant things.

    But of course that assumes you are interested in the truth rather than comforting myths and fairy tales.

    By way of analogy, what about a fish that leaves the water and walks on land. An equally crazy proposition: The fish just hopped onto land and started walking? And the right bits just evolved, kind of like Transformers? And in response to the environment. The animal liked walking so evolution provided the necessary equipment?

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  297. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Wat, you will not change someones mind with reason and logic, if they did not use those things to arrive at their position.

    The fear of a world without God is more convincing than the fact of evolution.

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  298. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    TheContrarian (676) Says:
    March 30th, 2013 at 10:12 pm
    Evolution =/= atheism

    While technically true, evolution does challenge ( and disprove) major doctrines and aspects of religion.
    Hence the only opposition to evolution is religiously motivated.

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  299. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Come on eszett, theists have to ignore a large number of conflicts between reality and their choice of opiate. They could just add evolution to the list of excusable differences (its an allegory, mistake in translation, it actually proves God exists) and move on.

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  300. expat (4,048 comments) says:

    C) The stupid, it burns.

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  301. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    Another nice example of observable evolution:

    http://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2013/03/30/guest-post-selection-in-real-time-via-road-kill/

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  302. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    While technically true, evolution does challenge ( and disprove) major doctrines and aspects of religion.

    No it doesn’t, it disproves an offshoot of creationism that believes in a young earth.

    There is still considerable uncertainty in how life emerged in the first place and also in how evolution actually advances.

    Why, for instance, couldn’t the process have been directed by a deity? why couldn’t the creative act be seen as creative experimentation?

    If humans reflect the nature of the God that crated us, why wouldn’t our own acts of creativity be an insight into those of the supreme creator?

    Does a painter know what his painting is going to look like before it is finished? perhaps evolution is just the brush strokes of a creative deity.

    If true, it would still look exactly as it does look.

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  303. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Why, for instance, couldn’t the process have been directed by a deity? why couldn’t the creative act be seen as creative experimentation?

    Can you think of any way to prove that it wasnt directed by a deity?

    Anyway, the god of the bible is supposed to be all knowing and unchanging. That kind of rules out the need and opportunity for experimentation.

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  304. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Anyway, the god of the bible is supposed to be all knowing and unchanging. That kind of rules out the need and opportunity for experimentation.

    No it doesn’t.

    The texts of the bible make it clear that each step of the creative process was reflected upon and assessed for worth before the next phase ensued, a deity is in no way limiting its power because it chooses to ‘create’.

    The physical medium was created in the birth of the universe and then life was created within that medium, some experimentation is hardly an affront to the power of the deity, the whole deal would be within the deities power anyway.

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  305. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    No it doesn’t, it disproves an offshoot of creationism that believes in a young earth.

    E.g the fact that humanity could not have originated from two individuals, i.e. there never was an Adam and Eve, kind of pulls the rug out of the central dogma of original sin and the fall.

    The fact that there isn’t a single time where humans emerged, but a long and gradual process also begs the question when did God put “the soul” into humans.

    Also evolution continues, meaning humans will continue to evolve.

    Why, for instance, couldn’t the process have been directed by a deity? why couldn’t the creative act be seen as creative experimentation?

    Because there is no evidence for that. If “directed by a deity” looks exactly the same as “un-directed by a deity” than why bother. The influence of the deity is then irrelevant.

    Also begs the question why the deity didn’t bother to tell us so, but come up with a nonsense story.

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  306. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    The texts of the bible make it clear that each step of the creative process was reflected upon and assessed for worth before the next phase ensued, a deity is in no way limiting its power because it chooses to ‘create’.

    Well, that again is your “interpretation” of the bible, they way you would like to understand it.

    And actually he is, by contradicting his omniscience.
    If he doesn’t know the outcome, he can’t be omniscient. If he does, he wouldn’t need to reflect and assess.

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  307. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Why, for instance, couldn’t the process have been directed by a deity?

    And couldn’t gravity be a magic pixie pushing everything with a stick?

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  308. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    E.g the fact that humanity could not have originated from two individuals, i.e. there never was an Adam and Eve, kind of pulls the rug out of the central dogma of original sin and the fall.

    Even modern biologists accept that there is very little genetic variation in the human species, we could very likely have come from the biological equivalent of just 2 individuals.

    The fact that there isn’t a single time where humans emerged, but a long and gradual process also begs the question when did God put “the soul” into humans.

    At some point relatively recently I guess, it’s pretty well accepted that the modern form of human being is but a few tens of thousands of years old.

    Also evolution continues, meaning humans will continue to evolve.

    You don’t know that, and you can’t prove that. Evolution moves so slowly as to be fixed for all practical observable purposes. Either way, this doesn’t prove that humanity isn’t a ‘special’ project from a creative deity.

    Because there is no evidence for that. If “directed by a deity” looks exactly the same as “un-directed by a deity” than why bother. The influence of the deity is then irrelevant.

    So you would only accept it as reality if there was more arbitrary aspects to the deities creation?

    Also begs the question why the deity didn’t bother to tell us so, but come up with a nonsense story.

    Well that depends on who you listen to and your underlying motivation to a very large extent.

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  309. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Unchanging
    Malachi 3:6-7a 6 For I the LORD do not change; therefore you, O children of Jacob, have not perished.

    All Knowing
    Job 37:16 Do you know the balancings of the clouds, the wondrous works of him who is perfect in knowledge.

    So the Bible DOES say that God is all knowing and unchanging. Personally, if I was going to base my whole world view on one thing, I would hope I knew what that thing said and if it contradicted itself, I would hope that I wouldn’t consider that more evidence of its truth.

    How you decide which baseless, evidenceless, non-sensical, contradictory fantasy to believe?

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  310. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Shunda,

    The Biblical Earth is some 6000 years old. If you deny that then you have to throw the rest of the fairy story away as well.

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  311. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    And actually he is, by contradicting his omniscience.
    If he doesn’t know the outcome, he can’t be omniscient. If he does, he wouldn’t need to reflect and assess.

    Is the concept of “omniscience” and it’s definition given by the bible or is it something people have sought to define?

    If the creator creates something and then chooses to further create within the restrictions of the physical medium (time&space) how is that a restriction on the deities ultimate power?

    When an artist paints, the painting isn’t in control, the artist has a mental picture and ideas and then expresses them on the physical world via colour and canvas, why couldn’t a deity do the same thing?

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  312. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    And couldn’t gravity be a magic pixie pushing everything with a stick?

    Because that is stupid.

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  313. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    So the Bible DOES say that God is all knowing and unchanging. Personally, if I was going to base my whole world view on one thing, I would hope I knew what that thing said and if it contradicted itself, I would hope that I wouldn’t consider that more evidence of its truth.

    How you decide which baseless, evidenceless, non-sensical, contradictory fantasy to believe?

    I use logic to determine the relevance of the variety of interpretations that exist.

    I also understand that as a biological creature created with a somewhat lower intellect than the possible deity that created the universe, I may have no more ability to grasp certain things than a dog has to appreciate fine wine.

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  314. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    How you decide which baseless, evidenceless, non-sensical, contradictory fantasy to believe?

    Why is the pixie proposal stupid, but your magical bear in the sky the obvious truth?

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  315. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    The Biblical Earth is some 6000 years old.

    The majority of Christians throughout history have never believed that.

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  316. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Because that is stupid.

    Whereas the idea of a magic pixie fine-tuning the DNA mix every time any animals on Earth fuck is not?

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  317. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    I use logic to determine the relevance of the variety of interpretations that exist.

    So you ignore parts that you dont agree with and you risk ruin if your interpretation is wrong. How can you know which part is wrong when it is impossible for humans to comprehend God’s will?

    Ecclesiastes 11:5 Just as you cannot understand the path of the wind or the mystery of a tiny baby growing in its mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the activity of God, who does all things.

    Is that one of the parts that you ignore, or reinterpret?

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  318. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Why is the pixie proposal stupid, but your magical bear in the sky the obvious truth?

    Show me thousands of years of texts written by this pixie and a nature revealed in those texts that is entirely consistent with what we have discovered in the known universe and I will take a good hard look at it.

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  319. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Whoa! Are you saying that GOD wrote the Bible?

    And are you saying that everything in the Bible is consistent with the known universe?

    You have no proof for the first assertion, unless you want to take this opportunity to present it (failure to do so will prove youre lying) and a wealth of evidence to the contrary for the second.

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  320. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    So you ignore parts that you dont agree with and you risk ruin if your interpretation is wrong. How can you know which part is wrong when it is impossible for humans to comprehend God’s will?

    No, I ignore people that are interpreting what they think they understand. I don’t believe in ‘sensing murder’ for the same reason.

    Ecclesiastes 11:5 Just as you cannot understand the path of the wind or the mystery of a tiny baby growing in its mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the activity of God, who does all things.

    Is that one of the parts that you ignore, or reinterpret?

    Is the poetic language completely missed by you?

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  321. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Who decided it was mere poetic language and could be ignored?

    And are you saying that God ISNT all knowing?

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  322. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    And are you saying that everything in the Bible is consistent with the known universe?

    I am saying there is no scientific reason to disprove the God of the bible based on the revealed character of this deity within those texts.

    In fact, it is the only deity that has the necessary nature to fit in with big bang cosmology.

    You have no proof for the first assertion, unless you want to take this opportunity to present it (failure to do so will prove youre lying) and a wealth of evidence to the contrary for the second.

    And you have no proof against it.

    Faith is a requirement of belief in this deity, I readily admit that, what I am objecting to here is the intellectually dishonest presumption that somehow this deity has been proven false.

    Believe, don’t believe, I don’t care, but don’t pretend that science is somehow on your side of this debate, science is inert when it comes to philosophy and the implications drawn from it.

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  323. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Who decided it was mere poetic language and could be ignored?

    What sort of moron would think the meaning of that scripture is in anyway lost? I can understand the intended meaning, can’t you?

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  324. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    those texts that is entirely consistent with what we have discovered in the known universe

    The age of the Earth is 6000 years old?

    The entire Earth flooded and every type of animal walked, crawled and slithered from all across the planet – swimming oceans and crossing mountain ranges – to all fit onto a single boat (and then repeating the process afterwards, all traversing the globe to return to their original locations)?

    People can do magic?

    Talking donkeys?

    Fuck me.

    That a grown man could spout such childish shit is beyond demeaning.

    Perhaps one day you’ll grow up, lose you fear, and look the world in the eye, son.

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  325. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    I am saying there is no scientific reason to disprove the God…

    And that’s all that is required to get you to believe something? It has to be unfalsifiable and old?

    The gravity pixie require faith to believe in it too.

    Faith is a requirement of belief in this deity, I readily admit that, what I am objecting to here is the intellectually dishonest presumption that somehow this deity has been proven false.

    NOBODY IS SAYING THAT! We are saying that it hasn’t been proven TRUE!

    Evolution is real, science has proven that to as great an extent as is possible. Its your fellow religious morons that are saying it isn’t real, and the only reason you do that is because you believe in something that ISN’T proven to exist. And thats just stupid.

    You accuse us of intellectual dishonesty for saying that science has proven GOD doesnt exist, when we have never said anything of the sort. YOU ARE LYING!

    Why is it that the people who believe in hell are so ready to risk going thereby bearing false witness?

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  326. krazykiwi (9,189 comments) says:

    The Biblical Earth is some 6000 years old. If you deny that then you have to throw the rest of the fairy story away as well.

    Classic argumentum ad logicam there wat.

    I know very few Christians who believe the earth is 6000 years old.

    But if your believing this to be the case helps you distrust anything that flows from the mouths of Christians, then who am I to deny you that comfort.

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  327. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    Even modern biologists accept that there is very little genetic variation in the human species, we could very likely have come from the biological equivalent of just 2 individuals.

    Modern genetics have proven that we in fact do not have two individuals as ancestors, but more about a group of 10000
    It is in fact impossible that we could have come from just two ancestors.

    More on that:

    http://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2011/06/02/adam-and-eve-the-ultimate-standoff-between-science-and-faith-and-a-contest/


    At some point relatively recently I guess, it’s pretty well accepted that the modern form of human being is but a few tens of thousands of years old.

    Fact is that there is no single point where humans emerged, so if you accept evolution and God put the souls into humans, there must have been humans without a soul.


    You don’t know that, and you can’t prove that. Evolution moves so slowly as to be fixed for all practical observable purposes. Either way, this doesn’t prove that humanity isn’t a ‘special’ project from a creative deity.

    It’s one of the basics of evolution, that it is continuos.


    So you would only accept it as reality if there was more arbitrary aspects to the deities creation?

    No, I would accept it if there was evidence for it, i.e. something in evolution that cannot be explained by natural selection or one of the other scientific process. There has been no evidence for that.


    Also begs the question why the deity didn’t bother to tell us so, but come up with a nonsense story.

    Well that depends on who you listen to and your underlying motivation to a very large extent.

    Indeed, so you admit that the bible is vey much not fact but dependant in human interpretation and the motivation of the interpreter.
    In other words , you can find anything in the bible if you are willing to interpret it to suit your desired outcome.

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  328. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    I know very few Christians who believe the earth is 6000 years old.

    Then they are either ignorant of the Bible or they are denying it.

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  329. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Evolution is real, science has proven that to as great an extent as if possible. Its you religious morons that are saying it isn’t real, and the only reason you do that is because you believe in something that ISN’T proven to exist. And thats just stupid.

    Where on this thread did I say the evidence for evolution isn’t real?

    My beliefs are not based on ‘the church’ they are based on an application of principles and observing my own failure in life.

    I can fault the organized church and stand with you against “religious morons”, but I’m not going to differentiate between them and other morons.

    Jesus himself predicted that religious people are the ones that you’ve gotta watch out for more than most, am I irrational for believing him?

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  330. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    I clarified it to be your fellow religious morons. Your fellow travellers in religosity.

    If you do believe in evolution, why did you say that it has stopped? What evidence is there that evolution stops?

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  331. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    The poll question was whether humans were created in their present form 6-10,000 years ago. 23% of locals and 46% of Americans say yes.

    The internal record in the bible itself does not allow a humanity since Adam of any longer than around 6000 years. And the record of crop cultivation and flock domestication is around 10,000 years, the city of Jericho is pre 5000BCE (longer than 7000 years ago and a more recently discovered urban area nearly 10,000 years old).

    The question did not address the age of the Earth itself.

    The first geo-science issue is then, is there any evidence of a worldwide flood within the last 6000 years? And the answer is no.

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  332. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Indeed, so you admit that the bible is vey much not fact but dependant in human interpretation and the motivation of the interpreter.
    In other words , you can find anything in the bible if you are willing to interpret it to suit your desired outcome.

    I 100% agree with you.

    Which is why I accept the tremendous wisdom in sending Jesus to change it to “love God and love people”.

    Whether you believe in God or not, the bible is a very in depth commentary of human nature and human conflict, this is the aspect of it that I find intriguing.

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  333. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    The last ice age and rising sea level was around 10,000 years ago, but this was not a global flood leaving only one high place uncovered – any myth memories of it demonstrate a human existence that is older than 6000 years.

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  334. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Whether you believe in God or not, the bible is a very in depth commentary of human nature and human conflict

    No, it isn’t.

    Try reading some history books rather than stupid fairy stories.

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  335. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    If you do believe in evolution, why did you say that it has stopped? What evidence is there that evolution stops?

    I’m not an evolutionary biologist, any information on the topic requires me to have ‘faith’ in whomever brings this information forward.

    From what I do understand, I have developed my own ideas about how a creative deity could create life and leave the evidence that is currently used for the theory of evolution.

    None of us have the intellectual ability to grasp the big picture in it’s entirety, so why do we act like we do?

    That is the primary problem on both side of the debate as I see it.

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  336. krazykiwi (9,189 comments) says:

    Some here seem to be saying that there is no truth in an assertion that God exists , because there is – to their satisfaction – no scientific proof.

    A 1000 years ago no one could disprove the idea that the earth was the centre of the universe.

    Did that absence of proof mean that the earth didn’t orbit the sun back then, but it does now?

    Of course not.

    An assertion can be true without being scientific provable, and an absence of scientific proof doesn’t falsify the assertion.

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  337. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Try reading some history books rather than stupid fairy stories.

    I read plenty of history books.

    I guess that despite organized religion being the biggest cause of stress and heartache in my adult life to date, I don’t find myself full of bitterness and resentment.

    I don’t have a problem with Jesus or his ministry, and I doubt few reasonable people would.

    The problem with religion is exactly what he predicted it would be, which causes me to further regard him as a speaker of truth.

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  338. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    krazykiwi @ 4.11pm

    What?

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  339. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    An assertion can be true without being scientific provable, and an absence of scientific proof doesn’t falsify the assertion.

    Well said.

    Just like the scientific community ridiculed relentlessly for years and years the guy that first proposed (and stuck with) the theory of plate tectonics in the 1960′s.

    It’s a shame he wasn’t vindicated before he died.

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  340. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    Whether you believe in God or not, the bible is a very in depth commentary of human nature and human conflict, this is the aspect of it that I find intriguing.

    Or the bible is jus vague and contradictory and therefore open to anyone’s interpretation as he wishes.
    The bible is not a commentary on anything, but merely serves as a projection for the things you want to believe.

    You want to believe something and you go out and search the parts of the bible that you can interpret to suit your predefined beliefs, ignore everything that may contradict and suddenly claim: “There, it’s all in the bible”.

    If anyone contradicts you, all you have to claim is that the person doesn’t know how to “read” (i.e. interpret) the bible.

    It’s the very essence of confirmation bias.

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  341. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    But 1000 years ago, if you had asserted that the earth wasnt the centre of the universe without any proof everyone else would have been within their rights to call you stupid. If you then asserted that you didnt need proof, that there could be no proof, and that everyone must believe you were right specifically without proof and that this was in fact a virtue, then you would have been called very fucking stupid indeed.

    (Lets ignore that some people 1000 years ago knew that he earth wasnt the centre of the universe. And managed this with nothing more than observation.)

    We cannot prove God doesnt exist, we dont try. It is impossible to know. But you cant prove the gravity fairy doesnt exist either, and yet declare categorically that it doesnt.

    You say the gravity pixie and your magical sky bear are different. But as far as we have seen here, the only difference between them is that some undeniably ignorant people in the past really, really believed one of them existed. But they also said the earth was the centre of the universe, so they are hardly reliable sources.

    Sure, something can be true without being proven by science. Thats a triviality. But ever noticed how science changes to fit the facts as they are discovered?

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  342. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Or the bible is jus vague and contradictory and therefore open to anyone’s interpretation as he wishes.

    Are you describing the bible or modern society?

    From a purely analytical perspective on the way it is written I think you are being quite unreasonable. You don’t have to be a Christian to appreciate ancient texts.

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  343. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    He was describing the Bible, and how it is vague and contradictory and open to anyone’s interpretation. How about you put aside attempts at profound social commentary and answer the substance of his post. Because from here it looks like you are avoiding an uncomfortable topic.

    I would go further than he did and say the very fact that it says many things means it says nothing at all.

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  344. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    So faith is always stupid then Kimble? of no use to the human race even if it is simply a construct of the human mind? ( a mind that seems to have excess intelligence well beyond evolutionary necessity, but I digress).

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  345. Pete George (22,774 comments) says:

    An assertion can be true without being scientific provable, and an absence of scientific proof doesn’t falsify the assertion.

    Although there is no proof God may exist.
    Although there is no proof, gods may exist.
    Although there is no proof, gods may not exist.

    That’s how useful assertions absent any scientific proof are.

    Knowledge of how our solar system and the universe works has evolved over time as greater levels of proof have become known and have been accepted.

    Over the same time frame proof of the existence or absence of god/s remains the same – there is none. There’s no indication that science is involved. We should simply accept that some people believe in gods and some people don’t, and get on with using science for other things that science applies to.

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  346. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    He was describing the Bible, and how it is vague and contradictory and open to anyone’s interpretation.

    I would go further and say the very fact that it says many things means it says nothing at all.

    That is utterly ridiculous logic.

    Your approach works equally well with the newspaper siting in front of me.

    People can cut and paste all they like regardless of the quality of the material they are cutting from.

    Look how the progressives revise history every 5 mins when it suits their current agenda, or how atheists revise human tyranny throughout the ages.

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  347. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Excess intelligence? Evolutionary necessity?

    I dont think you really understand what evolution is. It is not about doing the bare minimum to succeed at a specific task.

    And yes, telling people that something is real while explicitly saying that there can be no proof is not just stupid, it is the MO of every religious conman since the dawn of time.

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  348. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    But 1000 years ago, if you had asserted that the earth wasnt the centre of the universe without any proof everyone else would have been within their rights to call you stupid

    No, they would have stoned you to death in the true christian manner .

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  349. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Over the same time frame proof of the existence or absence of god/s remains the same – there is none. There’s no indication that science is involved. We should simply accept that some people believe in gods and some people don’t, and get on with using science for other things that science applies to.

    What about philosophy based on modern science Pete?

    “Lets all collectively look the other way” seems to be about as comprehensive as modern philosophers give the ramifications of the big bang, while dangerous men like Sam Harris get their attention for his secular version of Calvinism that claims we’re all acting on ‘autopilot’.

    Hardly the enlightening times they could be.

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  350. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    No, the newspaper is using quite specific language, and is written so that primary school children can understand it. People read the newspaper and receive the same news.

    Unless you are currently reading the horoscopes of course. Because they are written so vague as to allow anyone to find their own personal truth.

    The Bible is more like the horoscopes than anything else in the newspaper. People believe in horoscopes despite there being no reason to.

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  351. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    No, they would have stoned you to death in the true christian manner .

    There’s that gold ole atheist tyranny revisionism again. ;)

    But those Christians that made scientific breakthrough discoveries will be claimed by atheists none the less, much like Matt McCarten just claimed Jesus in his Herald article.

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  352. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Atheists claim breakthrough discoveries by Christians as evidence of human driven advancement. They made breakthrough and were Christian, they didnt make breakthroughs BECAUSE they were Christians.

    Unless you have some evidence to show that their breakthroughs could not have been made by any non-Christian? If so, lets see it.

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  353. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    The Bible is more like the horoscopes than anything else in the newspaper.

    Have you ever even picked it up?

    I have done plenty of reading and find no particular issue with the literary structure of the bible, so I’m scratching my head as to why you do.

    With such poor structure it seems like a miracle that bible stories became as popular as they did, hey, perhaps God helped out after all ;)

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  354. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Isnt it funny how christians will use the age of the Bible as evidence of its truth, but at the same time dismiss the almost as old interpretations of the Bible as being wrong?

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  355. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    I was raised Christian, and read the Bible.

    Horoscopes use poetic language, are vague and can be interpreted many different ways. The Bible uses poetic language, is vague and can be interpreted many different ways.

    Perhaps you can explain the difference.

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  356. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    They made breakthrough and were Christian, they didnt make breakthroughs BECAUSE they were Christians.

    How do you know?

    How do you know that it wasn’t a faith in their research that lead them to discover?, how do you know that it wasn’t faith that caused a Christian to form the modern education system in the first place (John Amos Comenius) that has so benefited society and scientific discovery?

    Suddenly ‘faith’ isn’t sounding so moronic after all.

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  357. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    How do you know that it wasn’t a faith in their research that lead them to discover?

    In what way is that Christian? Faith in God is Christian, belief in the truth of your research is not.

    Are you so desperate that you are claiming faith in ANYTHING as supporting your Christian position?

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  358. krazykiwi (9,189 comments) says:

    c.f. bible and horoscopes:

    Perhaps you can explain the difference

    LOL. Whales are big, covered in flesh and breath air through lungs. Elephants are big, covered in flesh and breath air through lungs. Perhaps you can explain the difference?

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  359. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    So you can’t.

    Forgive my lack of surprise.

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  360. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    LOL. Whales are big, covered in flesh and breath air through lungs. Elephants are big, covered in flesh and breath air through lungs. Perhaps you can explain the difference?

    Well played KK! :)

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  361. Pete George (22,774 comments) says:

    To me the Bible is much like Shakespeare, some interesting quotes but both are in styles that don’t grab me.

    Maybe it’s no coincidence that both most widely known versions are English language interpretations from the early sixteen hundreds, derived and translated from much earlier works.

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  362. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Are you so desperate that you are claiming faith in ANYTHING as supporting your Christian position?

    No, I am claiming that people that fit your definition of “moron” have achieved far more for humanity than you or I ever will.

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  363. krazykiwi (9,189 comments) says:

    Kimble, you were implying that the bible and horoscopes are indistinguishable on the strength of your chosen set of subjective assessments. I was pointing out, perhaps not very well, that that’s a bit silly.

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  364. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    From a purely analytical perspective on the way it is written I think you are being quite unreasonable. You don’t have to be a Christian to appreciate ancient texts.

    Appreciation and analysis are two different things.
    You can appreciate an ancient mythological texts for what they are, ancient mythological texts.

    There are numerous ancient texts, the bible is merely one of them.

    However analytically the bible holds no more truths than any other mythological texts.

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  365. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    However analytically the bible holds no more truths than any other mythological texts.

    We build upon our knowledge and become better people for it, one can still read the bible, appreciate it’s teachings, and still enjoy scientific discovery in the modern era, and not stone people to death

    Why are you guys compelled to call these people morons, seek to silence their involvement in society, and effectively partially revoke citizenship in the process?

    Truth is an interesting concept.

    It certainly isn’t just Christians that struggle to apply it correctly.

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  366. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Kimble, you were implying that the bible and horoscopes are indistinguishable on the strength of your chosen set of subjective assessments.

    FFS, I was responding to the idiotic assertion that the Bible is like newspapers, so I pointed out that given what was actually said about the Bible the more accurate comparison was to the horoscopes. It was, in essence, repeating the original point.

    But you go ahead and change the point to one you CAN mount an argument against, instead of addressing the point that was actually made and to which you have no response.

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  367. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Why are you guys compelled to call these people morons, seek to silence their involvement in society, and effectively partially revoke citizenship in the process?

    Since when was telling someone they’re stupid the same as silencing them?

    And those people who made scientific breakthroughs were Christian by happenstance. They didnt make their breakthroughs because of their Christianity. You might as well say that their breakthroughs happened because of their star signs for as much as their Christianity had to do with it.

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  368. krazykiwi (9,189 comments) says:

    However analytically the bible holds no more truths than any other mythological texts

    Based on your understanding of truth, and your analysis of mythological texts. I’ll confess to not having completed the exhaustive analytical comparisons are you may have, but I can convey one absolute truth: My life has been, and continues to be changed for the better as a direct result of my faith in, and relationship with Jesus. No amount of being labeled a moron, or Jesus being declared a sky pixie changes this, which is kinda comforting.

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  369. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    When a work is called the word of God, people will look for the wisdom in the account. They will presume it is a wise account/version of the human story/across time.

    Given this was written by Jewish men, no wonder this became the story of the deification of a Jewish man. That was a natural evolution.

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  370. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    My life has been, and continues to be changed for the better as a direct result of my faith in, and relationship with X.

    And that can be true for any given value of X.

    God is a placebo. And sure, it might work for some people, but the danger is in dismissing REAL cures in favour of the placebo.

    Which is why the poll results are scary.

    Evolution is real. It is still occurring. The supporting evidence for evolution as a fact is beyond overwhelming.

    Even if God exists, there is no reason to believe it does. And that means all the little things too; God likes this, doesn’t like that, God helps me, God is watching over me, God judges us, etc.

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  371. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    Why have a relationship with Jesus? He was just messenger supposedly. The cult’s not about Jesus. The whole things about living life as God? wants us to which is not hurting each other and you don’t need to believe in a sect to live humanly. Thats the problem with organised relgions. Its no better than , rangers- celtic., city – united. muslim -chrsitian , Its just a club

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  372. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    And those people who made scientific breakthroughs were Christian by happenstance. They didnt make their breakthroughs because of their Christianity. You might as well say that their breakthroughs happened because of their star signs for as much as their Christianity had to do with it.

    John Amos Comenius said:

    We are all citizens of one world, we are all of one blood. To hate a man because he was born in another country, because he speaks a different language, or because he takes a different view on this subject or that, is a great folly. Desist, I implore you, for we are all equally human…. Let us have but one end in view, the welfare of humanity; and let us put aside all selfishness in considerations of language, nationality, or religion.

    This was also said of him:

    Comenius is best known for his innovations in pedagogy, but one cannot gain an adequate appreciation of his educational ideas without recognizing his religious and metaphysical convictions. Despite the prevalent human suffering of his day, Comenius remained optimistic about the future of mankind, as he believed in the immanence of God and the imminence of God’s kingdom on Earth. As God’s creations, humans were necessarily good, not corrupt. Comenius also felt that Christ’s Second Coming would end human strife but that people themselves could act in ushering the new millennium by engaging in pansophy, or the lifelong study of an encyclopedic system of human knowledge. By seeing the harmony among everything in the universe, all human beings would come to acknowledge God’s glory and presence in themselves and in nature.

    And you still think his Christian faith had nothing to do with it?

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  373. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Maybe we can agree that Creator God faith amongst humanity is about 6000 years old?

    Man in dominion on Earth began to imagine that they were created in the image of God, except that they were mortal, thus one purpose for God faith was the hope for blessing on Earth and reassurance of life beyond death.

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  374. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    So someone who wasn’t Christian couldn’t have come up with that?

    Of course not.

    But look at this As God’s creations, humans were necessarily good, not corrupt. Now, why would an atheist assume humans were corrupt? The truth is, they didnt, only theists think human nature is a corruption. So he was going AGAINST Christian teaching.

    He didn’t think humans were naturally corrupted, and neither do Atheists.

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  375. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    shunda, Comenius’s belief in Christ’s imminent Second Coming is closely associated with belief in Creationism and a 6000 year old Earth. It’s of a flawed literal reading of the bible, it’s allegorical meaning – is that after 6000 years of faith in a Creator God, man is supposed to be able to transform the world for the better, this being premised on this faith going global.

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  376. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    It looks like you scraped the bottom of the barrel for that one, lets see if you can come up with any others.

    Remember, you have to show that only a Christian could have come up with the breakthrough.

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  377. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Which is why the poll results are scary.

    There are far scarier polls than that.

    Evolution is real. It is still occurring. The supporting evidence for evolution as a fact is beyond overwhelming.

    AND IT DOESN’T MATTER, you guys bleat on about evolution like it’s the foundation of all that is sacred like a bunch of young earthers.

    It simply does not matter what people believe about evolution unless they are working in the field of evolutionary biology, there is no practical reason to fear what people believe or don’t believe on this subject, it is as simple as that.

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  378. krazykiwi (9,189 comments) says:

    Kimble, why do you say “God is a placebo”? The concept of God may be a placebo for you to rationalise the faith of others, but the reality of God is strength for me. A placebo He most certainly isn’t

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  379. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    So someone who wasn’t Christian couldn’t have come up with that?

    Oh this is painful.

    History records what it records, I am giving you evidence that proves that believing in God and having faith is as much a positive force for humanity as anything else.

    But look at this As God’s creations, humans were necessarily good, not corrupt. Now, why would an atheist assume humans were corrupt? The truth is, they didnt, only theists think human nature is a corruption. So he was going AGAINST Christian teaching.

    He was also a theologian, I trust his interpretation of correct doctrine over someone calling all and sundry “morons”. I understand exactly the point he was making and it is completely compatible with the redemptive aspect of fallen humanity “what was intended to be good can become good again” the evidence of corrupted tendencies in humanity at the time would hardly have been lost on him.

    He didn’t think humans were naturally corrupted, and neither do Atheists.

    Yes he did, and no they don’t, which is why atheists are the chief enablers of some extremely corrupt and evil emerging philosophy in our times.

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  380. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    I say God is a placebo because there is no proof there is any God, but people still claim that their “relationship” with him has changed their lives, always for the better.

    You feel better, that’s great. But that doesnt mean that God exists. Just like, you feel better, that’s great, but that doesnt mean you are in the group that got the medicine.

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  381. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    I am giving you evidence that proves that believing in God and having faith is as much a positive force for humanity as anything else.

    Oh great, now you have moved the goal posts again. How about you stick to one topic?

    The issue was whether you can come up with any examples of someone who made a breakthrough because of their Christianity, which means that a non-Christian couldn’t come up with it. Because if a non-Christian can come up with the same idea, it isn’t inherent to Christianity.

    I trust his interpretation of correct doctrine over someone calling all and sundry “morons”.

    You really are a chicken shit intellectual. Atheists do not believe that humans are inherently corrupt. Corrupted from what? Huh? Answer that.

    But it is a fundamental teaching of Christianity. Oh but thats inconvenient, so you will ignore it.

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  382. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    shunda, it can always be said that the fallen state of man referred to our mortality and thus the risen state, resurrection from death into the Kingdom of God (confused with both joining a church and the false teaching of a second coming of Jesus to end human self government on Earth).

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  383. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Oh great, now you have moved the goal posts again. How about you stick to one topic?

    Look who’s talking!

    The issue was whether you can come up with any examples of someone who made a breakthrough because of their Christianity, which means that a non-Christian couldn’t come up with it. Because if a non-Christian can come up with the same idea, it isn’t inherent to Christianity.

    How about I concede and you never again use the same bullshit logic to suggest that religion is a net cause of evil in the world?

    I trust his interpretation of correct doctrine over someone calling all and sundry “morons”.

    You really are a chicken shit intellectual. Atheists do not believe that humans are inherently corrupt. Corrupted from what? Huh? Answer that.

    Oh, dear, I am a “chicken shit intellectual” and you can’t even read my post correctly.

    But it is a fundamental teaching of Christianity. Oh but thats inconvenient, so you will ignore it.

    Redemption is the fundamental PRIMARY doctrine of Christianity, it’s in the name, the savior, the redeemer. For you to think Comenius thought any different is profoundly ridiculous. You don’t need redemption for something that hasn’t fallen from grace.

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  384. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    shunda, it can always be said that the fallen state of man referred to our mortality and thus the risen state, resurrection from death into the Kingdom of God (confused with both joining a church and the false teaching of a second coming of Jesus to end human self government on Earth).

    I thought the second coming was to end all death and suffering once and for all?

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  385. Chthoniid (2,027 comments) says:

    @Shunda barunda

    Just like the scientific community ridiculed relentlessly for years and years the guy that first proposed (and stuck with) the theory of plate tectonics in the 1960′s.

    Not exactly true. Wegner’s model of plate tectonics had the major problem of being contradicted by evidence when he proposed it. Continents did not float on the earth’s surface like giant ocean liners. His estimates of the speed continents moved were very wrong.

    Once the mechanism of subduction was discovered, plate tectonics got the scientific evidence it needed. Wegner was right only in the sense that continents did move. He was wrong about the geological mechanism. So no, he wasn’t as you put it, ‘vindicated’.

    Mud-slinging is not a highly regarded way to make a point.

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  386. thedavincimode (6,530 comments) says:

    Mud-slinging is not a highly regarded way to make a point.

    But it’s a lot more fun.

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  387. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Not exactly true.

    Oh for crying out loud.

    My point remains completely valid.

    By the way, then it also isn’t “exactly true” that Christians were the only ones pushing a flat earth, or the earth in the center of the universe, or that religion is a net force of evil.

    So how about we all not give a shit about silly polls on evolution and simply all do our little bit to make the world a better place until the atheists start executing people based on Sam Harris’s dodgy philosophies.

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  388. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    By the way, then it also isn’t “exactly true” that Christians were the only ones pushing a flat earth, or the earth in the center of the universe…

    They were the only ones torturing people to death for questioning those ideas.

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  389. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    How about I concede and you never again use the same bullshit logic to suggest that religion is a net cause of evil in the world?

    You can choke on a cock and die if you cant find a single quote from me where I suggested religion was the net cause of evil in the world.

    Find one. Just one. Right now.

    You can’t. Because I never said anything like that.

    YOU are the reason I am an atheist. You and people like you, all lying for Jesus.

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  390. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    YOU are the reason I am an atheist. You and people like you, all lying for Jesus.

    Oh please, as if any of this really matters. You are pissed off because I am not as easy to knock over as the church regulars that bark scripture at you.

    People like me are just normal people going about our lives, I raise my kids to respect others, I do my best in my business and earn the respect of my colleagues/clients (most of the time), pay my taxes and do my best to live in peace with everyone I come across.

    If you think people like me are worthy of contempt and ridicule then the problem is on your shoulders not mine.

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  391. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    They were the only ones torturing people to death for questioning those ideas.

    If you weren’t so selective in your history reading you would realize that is total bullshit.

    It is genuinely amazing how these prejudices exist among those that claim to be enlightened. But I guess second to killing people, scapegoating does appear to be the favorite pass time of humanity (probably because it leads to killing more people ;) ).

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  392. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    You can choke on a cock and die if you cant find a single quote from me where I suggested religion was the net cause of evil in the world.

    So you believe that Christianity has had a net positive influence on the world?

    By the way, you misread what I wrote (again).

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  393. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    We build upon our knowledge and become better people for it, one can still read the bible, appreciate it’s teachings, and still enjoy scientific discovery in the modern era, and not stone people to death

    As one can do with Shakespeare’s works as well. Or any other work of fiction.

    The problem arises when people claim that the bible is non-fiction.

    We build upon our knowledge and become better people for it despite the Bible and religion in general.

    Why are you guys compelled to call these people morons, seek to silence their involvement in society, and effectively partially revoke citizenship in the process?

    You mean the way Christians did to all who opposed them over the centuries?

    You can read the Bible, enjoy it’s “teachings” and involve yourself in society with impunity. Playing the victim card here because you don’t enjoy unquestioned privilege anymore is rather dishonest, but quite typical as well.

    You just don’t get a free pass anymore when making unsubstantiated or outright disproven claims about the Bible and not being challenged about it.

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  394. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    You mean the way Christians did to all who opposed them over the centuries?

    No, because that is a lie based on selective revision of history.

    You can read the Bible, enjoy it’s “teachings” and involve yourself in society with impunity. Playing the victim card here because you don’t enjoy unquestioned privilege anymore is rather dishonest, but quite typical as well.

    I’m not old enough to know anything about this “privileged” past, I just see a bunch of bossy pseudo intellectuals barking insults at people because they refuse to renounce their religion at their feet.

    You just don’t get a free pass anymore when making unsubstantiated or outright disproven claims about the Bible and not being challenged about it.

    No, seems not.

    I wonder how far people like you will take that approach?

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  395. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    You can choke on a cock and die if you cant find a single quote from me where I suggested…

    Kimble. That has to be the Quote of the day. :)

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  396. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Shunda barunda (2,633) Says:
    March 31st, 2013 at 8:29 pm
    They were the only ones torturing people to death for questioning those ideas.

    If you weren’t so selective in your history reading you would realize that is total bullshit.

    It gets worse. Not believing in your cult has carried the death penalty through out most of its history. Along with rather a lot else, as demanded by the Church.

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  397. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    It gets worse. Not believing in your cult has carried the death penalty through out most of its history. Along with rather a lot else, as demanded by the Church.

    Name one Christian tyrant ruler of the past 200 years.

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  398. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Well enough from me. Lets see what the “good book” has to say:

    Kill People Who Don’t Listen to Priests
    Anyone arrogant enough to reject the verdict of the judge or of the priest who represents the LORD your God must be put to death. Such evil must be purged from Israel. (Deuteronomy 17:12 NLT)

    Kill Witches
    You should not let a sorceress live. (Exodus 22:17 NAB)

    Kill Homosexuals
    “If a man lies with a male as with a women, both of them shall be put to death for their abominable deed; they have forfeited their lives.” (Leviticus 20:13 NAB)

    Kill Fortunetellers
    A man or a woman who acts as a medium or fortuneteller shall be put to death by stoning; they have no one but themselves to blame for their death. (Leviticus 20:27 NAB)

    Death for Hitting Dad
    Whoever strikes his father or mother shall be put to death. (Exodus 21:15 NAB)

    Death for Cursing Parents
    1) If one curses his father or mother, his lamp will go out at the coming of darkness. (Proverbs 20:20 NAB)
    2) All who curse their father or mother must be put to death. They are guilty of a capital offense. (Leviticus 20:9 NLT)

    Death for Adultery
    If a man commits adultery with another man’s wife, both the man and the woman must be put to death. (Leviticus 20:10 NLT)

    Death for Fornication
    A priest’s daughter who loses her honor by committing fornication and thereby dishonors her father also, shall be burned to death. (Leviticus 21:9 NAB)

    Death to Followers of Other Religions
    Whoever sacrifices to any god, except the Lord alone, shall be doomed. (Exodus 22:19 NAB)

    Kill Nonbelievers
    They entered into a covenant to seek the Lord, the God of their fathers, with all their heart and soul; and everyone who would not seek the Lord, the God of Israel, was to be put to death, whether small or great, whether man or woman. (2 Chronicles 15:12-13 NAB)

    Kill False Prophets
    If a man still prophesies, his parents, father and mother, shall say to him, “You shall not live, because you have spoken a lie in the name of the Lord.” When he prophesies, his parents, father and mother, shall thrust him through. (Zechariah 13:3 NAB)

    Kill the Entire Town if One Person Worships Another God
    Suppose you hear in one of the towns the LORD your God is giving you that some worthless rabble among you have led their fellow citizens astray by encouraging them to worship foreign gods. In such cases, you must examine the facts carefully. If you find it is true and can prove that such a detestable act has occurred among you, you must attack that town and completely destroy all its inhabitants, as well as all the livestock. Then you must pile all the plunder in the middle of the street and burn it. Put the entire town to the torch as a burnt offering to the LORD your God. That town must remain a ruin forever; it may never be rebuilt. Keep none of the plunder that has been set apart for destruction. Then the LORD will turn from his fierce anger and be merciful to you. He will have compassion on you and make you a great nation, just as he solemnly promised your ancestors. “The LORD your God will be merciful only if you obey him and keep all the commands I am giving you today, doing what is pleasing to him.” (Deuteronomy 13:13-19 NLT)

    Kill Women Who Are Not Virgins On Their Wedding Night
    But if this charge is true (that she wasn’t a virgin on her wedding night), and evidence of the girls virginity is not found, they shall bring the girl to the entrance of her fathers house and there her townsman shall stone her to death, because she committed a crime against Israel by her unchasteness in her father’s house. Thus shall you purge the evil from your midst. (Deuteronomy 22:20-21 NAB)

    Kill Followers of Other Religions.
    1) If your own full brother, or your son or daughter, or your beloved wife, or you intimate friend, entices you secretly to serve other gods, whom you and your fathers have not known, gods of any other nations, near at hand or far away, from one end of the earth to the other: do not yield to him or listen to him, nor look with pity upon him, to spare or shield him, but kill him. Your hand shall be the first raised to slay him; the rest of the people shall join in with you. You shall stone him to death, because he sought to lead you astray from the Lord, your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, that place of slavery. And all Israel, hearing of this, shall fear and never do such evil as this in your midst. (Deuteronomy 13:7-12 NAB)

    2) Suppose a man or woman among you, in one of your towns that the LORD your God is giving you, has done evil in the sight of the LORD your God and has violated the covenant by serving other gods or by worshiping the sun, the moon, or any of the forces of heaven, which I have strictly forbidden. When you hear about it, investigate the matter thoroughly. If it is true that this detestable thing has been done in Israel, then that man or woman must be taken to the gates of the town and stoned to death. (Deuteronomy 17:2-5 NLT)

    Death for Blasphemy
    One day a man who had an Israelite mother and an Egyptian father got into a fight with one of the Israelite men. During the fight, this son of an Israelite woman blasphemed the LORD’s name. So the man was brought to Moses for judgment. His mother’s name was Shelomith. She was the daughter of Dibri of the tribe of Dan. They put the man in custody until the LORD’s will in the matter should become clear. Then the LORD said to Moses, “Take the blasphemer outside the camp, and tell all those who heard him to lay their hands on his head. Then let the entire community stone him to death. Say to the people of Israel: Those who blaspheme God will suffer the consequences of their guilt and be punished. Anyone who blasphemes the LORD’s name must be stoned to death by the whole community of Israel. Any Israelite or foreigner among you who blasphemes the LORD’s name will surely die. (Leviticus 24:10-16 NLT)

    Kill False Prophets
    1) Suppose there are prophets among you, or those who have dreams about the future, and they promise you signs or miracles, and the predicted signs or miracles take place. If the prophets then say, ‘Come, let us worship the gods of foreign nations,’ do not listen to them. The LORD your God is testing you to see if you love him with all your heart and soul. Serve only the LORD your God and fear him alone. Obey his commands, listen to his voice, and cling to him. The false prophets or dreamers who try to lead you astray must be put to death, for they encourage rebellion against the LORD your God, who brought you out of slavery in the land of Egypt. Since they try to keep you from following the LORD your God, you must execute them to remove the evil from among you. (Deuteronomy 13:1-5 NLT)

    2) But any prophet who claims to give a message from another god or who falsely claims to speak for me must die.’ You may wonder, ‘How will we know whether the prophecy is from the LORD or not?’ If the prophet predicts something in the LORD’s name and it does not happen, the LORD did not give the message. That prophet has spoken on his own and need not be feared. (Deuteronomy 18:20-22 NLT)

    Infidels and Gays Should Die
    So God let them go ahead and do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies. Instead of believing what they knew was the truth about God, they deliberately chose to believe lies. So they worshiped the things God made but not the Creator himself, who is to be praised forever. Amen. That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relationships with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men and, as a result, suffered within themselves the penalty they so richly deserved. When they refused to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their evil minds and let them do things that should never be done. Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, fighting, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip. They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They are forever inventing new ways of sinning and are disobedient to their parents. They refuse to understand, break their promises, and are heartless and unforgiving. They are fully aware of God’s death penalty for those who do these things, yet they go right ahead and do them anyway. And, worse yet, they encourage others to do them, too. (Romans 1:24-32 NLT)

    Kill Anyone who Approaches the Tabernacle
    For the LORD had said to Moses, ‘Exempt the tribe of Levi from the census; do not include them when you count the rest of the Israelites. You must put the Levites in charge of the Tabernacle of the Covenant, along with its furnishings and equipment. They must carry the Tabernacle and its equipment as you travel, and they must care for it and camp around it. Whenever the Tabernacle is moved, the Levites will take it down and set it up again. Anyone else who goes too near the Tabernacle will be executed.’ (Numbers 1:48-51 NLT)

    Kill People for Working on the Sabbath
    The LORD then gave these further instructions to Moses: ‘Tell the people of Israel to keep my Sabbath day, for the Sabbath is a sign of the covenant between me and you forever. It helps you to remember that I am the LORD, who makes you holy. Yes, keep the Sabbath day, for it is holy. Anyone who desecrates it must die; anyone who works on that day will be cut off from the community. Work six days only, but the seventh day must be a day of total rest. I repeat: Because the LORD considers it a holy day, anyone who works on the Sabbath must be put to death.’ (Exodus 31:12-15 NLT)

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  399. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Shunda, I had presumed adventists were creationists, given what you said.

    “I thought the second coming was to end all death and suffering once and for all?”

    Do you believe in Revelation prophecy before such an end to mortal human life on Earth?

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  400. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Shunda barunda (2,634) Says:
    March 31st, 2013 at 9:04 pm
    It gets worse. Not believing in your cult has carried the death penalty through out most of its history. Along with rather a lot else, as demanded by the Church.

    Name one Christian tyrant ruler of the past 200 years.

    LOL :) :) :)

    Only a bloody christian would think 200 years was most of earths history !

    (BTW, I noticed you consider a christian who follows god perfect word a “tyrant”.)

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  401. Dazzaman (1,123 comments) says:

    However I can be pretty certain that humanity is more than 10,000 years old.

    Let’s see…..there is NO evidence of humanity that can be dated at over 4.5 to 5 thousand years old with any certainty whatsoever. Artifacts, fossils, remains don’t come with age labels on them.

    Believing the evolutionary/historical fairy tales that begin with, “A long, long time ago…”, just compound the stupidity.

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  402. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Dazzaman, who fed you that rubbish? Was it Jeeeeeeeeeeeeeeesus ?

    Do you agree with the clear and perfect work of God, or do you think God is a power hungry murderous sadist and ignore his clear words ?

    For example: Do you think women who are not virgins on their wedding night should be stoned to death on their dads doorstep ? Along with kids who answer back ?

    Or not? Please provide clear non contradictory reasons…

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  403. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Whales are big, covered in flesh and breath air through lungs.

    Of course, a designer would have given them gills.

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  404. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Shunda, what qualifies as a tyrant?

    George Bush, rendition, Guantanamo Bay, the Patriot Act, illegal spying on Americans, being head of a state applying death sentence law, drone strikes, illegal invasion of Iraq?

    Barack Obama, rendition, GB, the Patriot Act, being head of a state applying death sentence law, drone strikes?

    Latin American military dictators?

    Franco, Mussolini, Hitler?

    Spanish Kings 19thC?

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  405. expat (4,048 comments) says:

    Shunda = 65 posts. Mate you’re obsessed with a stone age superstition.

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  406. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Believing the evolutionary/historical fairy tales…

    I think it’s really sweet when Christians condemn science as a “fairy tale” whilst using it successfully in every other aspect of their life and at the same time as credulously lapping up stories about talking donkeys and global floods where each type of animal somehow crossed the entire world to all fit on a small boat.

    You’re adorable, Dazza.

    How old are you now? Five?

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  407. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Shunda = 65 posts. Mate you’re obsessed with a stone age superstition.

    Says the guy with 1200 more posts to his credit.

    I am here because I am terribly bored and currently fighting with the Mrs :)

    By the way, the first rule of fight club is that nobody gives shit to others about posting on fight club. ;)

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  408. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    SB, given your contention that most of human history is, 200 years, how old do you think the world is ?

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  409. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Of course, a designer would have given them gills.

    Actually, it could be argued that seemingly arbitrary variation in water dwelling creatures is evidence for a designer.

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  410. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    SB, given your contention that most of human history is, 200 years, how old do you think the world is ?

    4.5 billion years aint it?

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  411. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    And 200 years is 10% of the last 2000 years and death sentence law is still practiced in the USA.

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  412. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Actually, it could be argued that seemingly arbitrary variation in water dwelling creatures is evidence for a designer.

    Oh Jesus.

    The desperation is palpable and embarrassing.

    Our friend Scott was telling us how perfectly designed the whale is (“You see I think the whale seems incredibly well designed. Kind of like it was made that way?”), yet when the inconvenient fact of having no gills is mentioned you try to claim that as evidence for a fickle designer.

    What are you, a used-car dealer?

    Your complete lack of integrity and intellectual honesty marks you as a true Christian. Well done sir.

    If ever I need a false alibi I shall be in touch.

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  413. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    And 200 years is 10% of the last 2000 years.

    And it’s long enough to learn that it’s time to lay off Christianity.

    My intention was to contrast it with the 20th century and all the brutality dealt to humanity by atheist tyrants, I chucked on another 100 years to make a point, but none of you seemed to get that.

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  414. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Oh Jesus.

    Hallelujah!! a break through!!

    The desperation is palpable and embarrassing.

    My face isn’t red.

    Our friend Scott was telling us how perfectly designed the whale is (“You see I think the whale seems incredibly well designed. Kind of like it was made that way?”), yet when the inconvenient fact of having no gills is mentioned you try to claim that as evidence for a fickle designer.

    Nope.

    It makes complete sense for a large creature to have lungs instead of gills.

    What are you, a used-car dealer?

    No sir, just a normal person doing normal things.

    Your complete lack of integrity and intellectual honesty marks you as a true Christian. Well done sir.

    That would have to be one of the biggest pot meet kettle instances on this blog for a while.

    If ever I need a false alibi I shall be in touch.

    You never did tell us why you have such a seething hatred for Christians Wat, what happened? did you know Graham Caphill as a boy?

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  415. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Which one of Franco, Hitler and Mussolini and the Latin American military dictators was not a Christian?

    You can cite Mao and the Khmer Rouge, North Koreans and Stalin in part – he was educated by Christians.

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  416. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    You are pissed off because I am not as easy to knock over as the church regulars that bark scripture at you.

    I am pissed off because you LIED about what I said, as evidenced by your cowardice in the face of a direct challenge. You just needed one example where I suggested what you said I did, and you can’t even produce that. Pathetic.

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  417. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Shunda barunda, the changes are not arbitrary. The different animals have evolved to fill various ecological niches. The observations of Evolutionary science demonstrate this along with the mechanism for such variations to occur.

    DNA research has shown that the most remarkable thing is not the variation in living things, but the astounding similarity between species.

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  418. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    My own personal take on the evolution of different species is that there were more adaption genes in the earlier development and less of these once each kind evolved their specialist genes.

    Thus why we can share DNA with others but now be so different.

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  419. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    SPC (2,695) Says:
    March 31st, 2013 at 10:08 pm
    Which one of Franco, Hitler and Mussolini and the Latin American military dictators was not a Christian?

    Dam, your so brainy SPC ! Even google does not know the answer, maybe it is broken :)

    But we all know that Mao killed about the entire death toll of WWII on all sides, of his own people, in peace time, to advance the cause of socialism ATHEISM.

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  420. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    I am pissed off because you LIED about what I said, as evidenced by your cowardice in the face of a direct challenge. You just needed one example where I suggested what you said I did, and you can’t even produce that. Pathetic.

    Kimble, you are pissed off because you mis-read two of my posts and jumped to incorrect conclusions.

    Throwing a hissy fit won’t solve anything.

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  421. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    We all know that the only reason so called “Christians” claim to believe in “God” is so that they can excuse the horrible things they do. Its the perfect cult for the depraved and disgusting. Ever wondered why rape and pedophilia aren’t in the list of Top 10 bad things to do?

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  422. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    My intention was to contrast it with the 20th century and all the brutality dealt to humanity by atheist tyrants

    Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot, Hitler, did those things in the name of socialism, not in the name of their spiritual beliefs. How many fucking times must you pig ignorant bible thumpers be told this self evident fact !

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  423. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Kimble, you are pissed off because you mis-read two of my posts and jumped to incorrect conclusions.

    Then explain yourself. What did you mean when you said I could stop using a particular argument of logic to AGAIN suggest religion is the source of evil?

    Your whines about being “misread” or “misinterpretted” ring pretty fucking hollow when you dont follow up with clarification of what you “really meant”.

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  424. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Shunda barunda, the changes are not arbitrary. The different animals have evolved to fill various ecological niches. The observations of Evolutionary science demonstrate this along with the mechanism for such variations to occur.

    DNA research has shown that the most remarkable thing is not the variation in living things, but the astounding similarity between species.

    One of the interesting aspects of the Genesis account that quite a few Christians either miss or ignore is what the words actually say: “let the earth sprout”, “let the waters teem”, and “let the earth bring forth living creatures”.

    In all instances, what brings forth the life? the earth and the water. There’s your evolution reconciliation.

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  425. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Then explain yourself. What did you mean when you said I could stop using a particular argument of logic to AGAIN suggest religion is the source of evil?

    I never accused you of referencing religion as the source of all evil, I was talking about people suggesting Christianity has always been a net producer of evil.

    In my opinion that requires considerable ‘history smithing’.

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  426. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot, Hitler, did those things in the name of socialism, not in the name of their spiritual beliefs. How many fucking times must you pig ignorant bible thumpers be told this self evident fact

    Then Kea me ole codger, the Christians are off the hook for the same damned reason!

    The Crusades were politically and economically driven, the inquisitions politically driven, about the only thing you can count is the witch dunkings in the USA and we all know they’re bat shit crazy on any number of fronts, so that is suspect too.

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  427. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    No, because that is a lie based on selective revision of history.

    lol. Talk about selective revision of history.


    I’m not old enough to know anything about this “privileged” past, I just see a bunch of bossy pseudo intellectuals barking insults at people because they refuse to renounce their religion at their feet.

    another lol statement. As if your privilege doesn’t continue, just not at the heights it used to. Besides I never barked insults at you, certainly not because you refuse to renounce your religion. I don’t care what you choose to believe in.

    You just don’t get a free pass anymore when making unsubstantiated or outright disproven claims about the Bible and not being challenged about it.

    No, seems not.

    I wonder how far people like you will take that approach?

    And finally, trying to play the victim card again? Not as far as christians or other religions in power and privilege have ever taken it in the past and present.

    I am always amused how religious people like you feel threatened by some mere questions and discussions. Always bringing out the poor prosecuted christian as soon as they are loosing an argument. Just highlights the weakness of your arguments.

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  428. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Shunda barunda, it was more than a few witch dunkings. It was the horrific torture of millions.

    Here is a small taste of what you people have done: http://home.comcast.net/~burokerl/torture_and_death_for_accused_witches.htm

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  429. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Shunda, the comparison is of course when people act on their beliefs and resort to killing to impose their order of rule. Christians who were tyrants were prepared to kill, just like any other tyrant.

    The distinction is when killing others is part of their Christianity (Inquisition heresy trials do qualify and they include witches as well as those who dared have and read the bible in the vernacular language). And when Christian law was death sentence law as is religious law in some Moslem countries today. It still influences the continuance of death sentence law in the USA.

    The Crusades were marketed to men of faith so they would go forth and kill those not Christian and many were killed at Jerusalem c 1100CE/AD simply for that reason.

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  430. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    lol. Talk about selective revision of history.

    Care to elaborate why?

    another lol statement. As if your privilege doesn’t continue, just not at the heights it used to.

    If you are a NZer living in this country, I would suggest you are incredibly deluded and paranoid if you really believe this. In the States? may be, but not here, not by a long shot.

    And finally, trying to play the victim card again? Not as far as christians or other religions in power and privilege have ever taken it in the past and present.

    People of all walks of life are prone to corruption regardless of the ideals they claim to hold.

    I am always amused how religious people like you feel threatened by some mere questions and discussions.

    I don’t feel threatened in the least by these discussions, but I do believe that certain forms of popular atheism are heading down a disturbing track.

    Always bringing out the poor prosecuted christian as soon as they are loosing an argument. Just highlights the weakness of your arguments.

    I don’t feel I am loosing this argument, I am wasting time, you are obliging me, there is a reason for that.

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  431. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I do believe that certain forms of popular atheism are heading down a disturbing track.

    SB, what is it about telling the truth and basing beliefs on evidence and logic that so disturb you?

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  432. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    I never accused you of referencing religion as the source of all evil, I was talking about people suggesting Christianity has always been a net producer of evil.

    And that’s just pathetic quibbling. You go from accusing me specifically, to people in general. Bullshit.

    Maybe you are just following the example of your “God”. He wrote a book so badly that people have spent centuries and thousand upon thousands of lives “debating” differences of interpretation. Not to mention the thousands and thousands of lives they corrected to death for questioning both sides of the debate. But he didnt bother to explain himself either. Better everyone goes on guessing what he meant.

    It cant be all that important if even the author, “God”, doesn’t care to correct errors of interpretation.

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  433. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    The ultimate question is when Christians evolve to

    1. evidence based positions on creation.
    2. evidence based positions on stories in the bible – that many were allegorical and are not to be taken literally. There is no evidence that God caused a worldwide flood, or earthquakes, or volcanic eruptions, or killed the Egyptian first born or helped Israelis kill Canaanites or decided the rise and fall of empires.
    3. give up faith in a literal interpretation of the book of Revelation, for its descriptions of God once again acting to kill humans is no more likely to be true than the OT accounts.

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  434. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Shunda, the comparison is of course when people act on their beliefs and resort to killing to impose their order of rule. Christians who were tyrants were prepared to kill, just like any other tyrant.

    But even you could make a judgement on whether you thought that tyranny was due to the teachings of Christ or the position of political power the individuals held. There is no reason to suggest that Christianity encourages violence or murder when the teachings of Christ actually expressly forbid it.

    Due to the power structures of the time, Christianity was poorly understood by those that claimed to follow it, few people during the times of the crusades would have read even a single passage of scripture.
    That Christianity was used as a proxy is absolutely undeniable, and I think you know that.

    The distinction is when killing others is part of their Christianity (Inquisition heresy trials do qualify and they include witches as well as those who dared have and read the bible in the vernacular language).

    Once again, killing someone for reading the bible sounds like political mind control to me, it is undeniable that many of these killings were about regime strengthening than purging incorrect doctrine, making examples of people is a great way to project fear and control over the population.

    And when Christian law was death sentence law as is religious law in some Moslem countries today. It still influences the continuance of death sentence law in the USA.

    The USA is but a tiny proportion of global Christianity and a major source of incorrect doctrine: prosperity teachings, young earth creation, all stuff caught up more in ‘the legend of America’ than the sermon on the mount.

    The Crusades were marketed to men of faith so they would go forth and kill those not Christian and many were killed at Jerusalem c 1100CE/AD simply for that reason.

    They were also done to give militarily trained men something to do instead of ransacking Europe, the Christianization of the vikings had led to a sharp reduction in European conflict and the various rulers were concerned that military men had nothing to do but mischief. The promise of land, wealth, and economic opportunity was too irresistible to resist so corrupt Popes hatched up a feigned excuse and away they went.

    Human beings are far more complicated and devious than the popular scapegoating scenarios would suggest.

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  435. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    So there you have it. Christianity didn’t cause people to murder others, it was political and mis-interpretations, but atheism definitely causes people to murder others. Because, you know, all those tenets of atheism require it. Here they are listed below:

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  436. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    And that’s just pathetic quibbling. You go from accusing me specifically, to people in general. Bullshit.

    What the hell do you want from me? do you need to fight me or something? I am seriously not interested in having all your anti Christian rage projected on to me, it’s not my bloody fault.

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  437. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Shunda, I think the Inquisition was more about a church imposing its obedience (as an institution of power on Earth), that this church was in a position of power and abused this power does not make it political, it was still an institution of religion.

    It could be said the C of E did the same with power in the state.

    Religious groups with power are as likely to abuse that power as anyone else. Does this mean that power is political and that those of religion who seek power for their religion in rule over society are betraying their religion or will lead their religion astray?

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  438. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    And again you pass up an opportunity to explain how I have “misread” your post.

    You are full of it.

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  439. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    What the hell do you want from me? do you need to fight me or something? I am seriously not interested in having all your anti Christian rage projected on to me, it’s not my bloody fault.

    Bible boy is having a wee cry now :)

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  440. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Religious groups with power are as likely to abuse that power as anyone else. Does this mean that power is political and that those of religion who seek power for their religion in rule over society are betraying their religion or will lead their religion astray?

    As far as Christianity goes? yes, I think you are correct. There is nothing in the teachings of Christ that encourage a political vehicle for spreading the gospel, Jesus was brilliant in how he confronted political power in a completely impartial (and indifferent) way.

    Does this mean that Christians can’t serve in politics? no, but they must understand the different mandate of the church compared to the state.

    Jesus very clearly defined both as having a separate mandate.

    This does NOT mean Christians should not participate in democracy or refrain from having their voices heard.

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  441. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    And again you pass up an opportunity to explain how I have “misread” your post.

    Perhaps there was a misunderstanding Kimble, a simple misunderstanding, can you let it go?

    I apologize for not making myself clearer.

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  442. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    And another opportunity goes flying by.

    I’m calling it; I interpreted your post correctly and you refuse to stand by it.

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  443. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Bible boy is having a wee cry now

    You live up to your name well ‘Kea’.

    You are like one of those naughty juvenile male Kea in big groups up at Arthurs Pass about this time of year, cheeky as hell and getting up to constant mischief.

    I was up there about a month ago and the little b@stards mobbed me and my truck, one was determined to rip out the wire to the flashing light and damn near succeeded despite my best attempts to protect it. He reminds me of you :P

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  444. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    SB, hope your feeling better after your wee cry.

    Religion has been used for political control as much as spiritual comfort. It has been a part of the ruling elite through out history, aligning its self with those in power. We still see this even now days. The church is unconcerned about the character of those in power or the outcomes for the people, just as long as they have a piece of the power and control.

    Islam has become a rallying point for the dispossessed and as a counter for perceived Western hegemony. It is not about spirituality, it is about power and control.

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  445. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    I’m calling it; I interpreted your post correctly and you refuse to stand by it.

    Do you believe that Christianity is a producer of net evil in the world today, yes or no?

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  446. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I was up there about a month ago and the little b@stards mobbed me and my truck, one was determined to rip out the wire to the flashing light and damn near succeeded despite my best attempts to protect it. He reminds me of you

    They were sent to test you. My little winged angels of mayhem and disorder :)

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  447. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    SB, hope your feeling better after your wee cry.

    My eyes are as dry as a nuns…. habit in the desert, I think kimbly wimbly got pretty upset though.

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  448. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Shunda, of course the capacity of any group with power to abuse it, does not mean that the group should not be involved in the democratic process.

    PS someone else is downticking your replies to my posts …

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  449. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Shunda, of course the capacity of any group with power to abuse it, does not mean that the group should not be involved in the democratic process.

    PS someone else is downticking your replies to my posts …

    I find myself in an interesting conundrum on these religious ‘wars’, on the one hand I feel compelled to defend my positive experience (and the right to continue that experience) with Christianity, but on the other I find I don’t want to be an apologist for much of the organized church.

    I can sympathize with those people that have had a negative experience with religion, the stuff my wife and I endured from pentecostal religion was pretty bad and is ongoing to a large extent.

    But the personal growth I gained from the more personal religious convictions have been of huge benefit and quite distinctive to the negative aspects.

    For me, the real evidence of any potential truth in Christianity isn’t based on science as much as on human behavior, but in discussions like this it is almost impossible to explain this adequately because there isn’t really any motivation by most people to see things from a different perspective.

    If the religion hasn’t got any power, or ‘truth’, why do certain principles work so well, even in a predictive context?

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  450. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Shunda, its more faith than religion that has endurance across time, religions and those exploiting them can have temporary standing, status and power in the world. Thus faith in God is said to be timeless and where God is connected to idealism, to development of (and the benefits derived from) values and ethics.

    The corruption of faith into the worldly form of religion, is for organisation of faith for “political” purposes. But power corrupts and when religion falls short, as it will, it taints the faith associated with it in the eyes of critics. And religion should have critics …, it needs them.

    Faith of the mortal, and less than perfect, in the immortal and perfect is supposed to narrow the gap between man and God, whereas all too often religion does the opposite.

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  451. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Do you believe that Christianity is a producer of net evil in the world today, yes or no?

    You have already asserted that my answer must be “yes”, so all you have to do is produce a quote from any post of mine that confirms it. Lets see it.

    This very question proves that I was correct in my reading of your comment. So why did you try to back away from it? Why did you compound lie upon lie by claiming I misread you? That’s a pretty pathetic thing to do.

    Remember, we were talking about how the breakthroughs of thinkers who happened to be Christians were not brought about simply because of their Christianity. And you came up with one example, but failed to explain how their insight could not be similarly produced by an atheist.

    This is just a variation on the Hitchens challenge for theists to describe one moral act that could not be performed by an atheist. This was in response to claims by the religious that their religion was the source of morality.

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  452. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    History Channel documentary – history of the universe in 2 hours (1 1/2 given the video has no ad breaks).

    From the big bang to the Earth, and evolution of life on the planet.

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  453. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Kimble (to Shunda) “why did you compound lie upon lie by claiming I misread you? That’s a pretty pathetic thing to do”.
    I am intrigued Kimble that you want Shunda to act honourably? When you dishonour anyone who disagrees with you by calling them stupid? As you give so shall you receive. If you expect people to debate fairly with you, surely you should start by debating fairly with them?

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  454. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    450 comments shows his debate is alive and well. Thank you for your responses to my question about an example of evolution actually happening. Your examples of speciation are well accepted. But is that evolution or has the designer put in a certain amount of variability in the design so it can adapt to different conditions over time? Birds get bigger bills if thee is a supply of bigger seeds is an example that Darwin noticed. Microbes can develop resistance, sure.
    But can that limited amount of variability account for the emergence of new body plans? Can such a process account for the existence of such plans in the first place?
    Or are the body plans testament to a designer? I mean the whale looks designed? Even the smallest cell is very complex and appears to be designed.

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  455. SGA (804 comments) says:

    @Scott 9:56
    I mean the whale looks designed?

    If by that you mean that whales appear well-adapted to their environment, I agree. And a process of natural selection with some random mutation can, over millions of generations, explain that adaptation. The guiding hand of an external designer is not demanded.

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  456. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    When you dishonour anyone who disagrees with you by calling them stupid?

    Except I was being honest. He lied.

    But is that evolution or has the designer put in a certain amount of variability in the design so it can adapt to different conditions over time?

    So what you’re asking is whether your designer could have designed evolution? Heads you win, tails we lose?

    But can that limited amount of variability account for the emergence of new body plans? Can such a process account for the existence of such plans in the first place?

    Yes, why wouldnt it? What’s stopping it? And yes, thats the basis of life, procreation.

    Or are the body plans testament to a designer?

    No. For there is no evidence of a designer. Let us see your evidence for there being a designer, and maybe then the idea will be entertained. Until then your Designer is no more valid a concept than the gravity pixie.

    I mean the whale looks designed? Even the smallest cell is very complex and appears to be designed.

    Is that it? Does your whole case for there being a designer amount to nothing more that? Things LOOK designed, so there must be a designer? That is pathetic.

    No, the Whale DOESNT look designed. It looks evolved.

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  457. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    450 comments shows his debate is alive and well.

    I look forward to the next topic for debate: Is the earth held up by a giant Turtle ?

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  458. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    Except I was being honest. He lied.

    This guy Kimble has a serious problem, he has screamed and yelled and fitted his way through this discussion calling people liars, morons, and ‘stupid’, then has the audacity to demand higher standards from others.

    The guy can’t even properly read what people write, and when you challenge him on exactly the thing he claims he is being misrepresented on, it turns out he actually held that position all along.

    That is more than a little dishonest.

    He would make a good legalistic Christian, a stickler for the rules and a great arm for swinging the big stick.

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  459. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    You lied, and now you are repeating the lie. You cant even produce a single quote to prove your case.

    It is that simple, one quote proving that I suggested what you declared I did.

    Just one quote. If your next post doesnt contain that quote, then I am vindicated, and you will be shown as a liar.

    Is this what your “faith” in “God” results in? Then what use is it?

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  460. pq (728 comments) says:

    SPC (2,705) Says:
    April 1st, 2013 at 1:52 am
    History Channel documentary – history of the universe in 2 hours (1 1/2 given the video has no ad breaks).
    From the big bang to the Earth, and evolution of life on the planet.

    pq
    This is a very good film with strong ideas.
    thanks SPC

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  461. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    Shunda barunda (2,656) Says:
    March 31st, 2013 at 10:56 pm

    another lol statement. As if your privilege doesn’t continue, just not at the heights it used to.

    If you are a NZer living in this country, I would suggest you are incredibly deluded and paranoid if you really believe this. In the States? may be, but not here, not by a long shot.

    The irony of you making that statement on Easter Sunday, a christian holiday and non-trading day, surely escapes you.

    I would suggest that it clearly shows who here is actually “incredibly deluded and paranoid”.

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  462. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    The irony of you making that statement on Easter Sunday, a christian holiday and non-trading day, surely escapes you.

    FFS, that isn’t even worth a reply.

    I would suggest that it clearly shows who here is actually “incredibly deluded and paranoid”.

    No actually, it would suggest you have a monumental chip on your shoulder.

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  463. Shunda barunda (2,965 comments) says:

    You lied, and now you are repeating the lie. You cant even produce a single quote to prove your case.

    I beat you in an argument and you are throwing the most monumental wobbly over it.

    Is this what your “faith” in “God” results in? Then what use is it?

    If this is what your atheism results in then it is of no use to you other than to foster perpetual anger and bitterness.

    Over and out.

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  464. wat dabney (3,655 comments) says:

    Thank you for your responses to my question about an example of evolution actually happening.

    Significant evolutionary change take place only very slowly, over hundreds and thousands and even millions of years.

    Your challenge to “show evolution actually happening” is therefore simply a device for you to evade the truth. The only sensible challenge would be “show me the fossil record.”

    If you wish to feel “clever” and to avoid addressing the real evidence for evolution then that’s fine. But don’t imagine for one second that you have refuted anything, because you simply haven’t.

    Remember, only people unable to honestly argue their position put up strawmen.

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  465. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    And there you have it. Offered a direct challenge to substantiate his accusation, and he pusses out. The only inference we can make from that is that Shunda barunda is a chicken shit liar who got his ass kicked in this thread and so resorted to lying about what other people said. Pathetic. Stupid and pathetic.

    He can’t come up with even ONE quote to prove he wasn’t lying. And now he says he beat me in an argument. Can he present one example of a point he made that wasn’t subsequently destroyed? No, of course he can’t. Because that is another figment of his imagination.

    Atheism doesnt make people angry and bitter. Stupid lying theists make atheists angry, and the fact the theists maintain a privelaged position in society makes atheists bitter.

    Who else could get away with saying utterly stupid things, without ordinary fear of the repercussions?

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  466. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    FFS, that isn’t even worth a reply.

    Obviously it was.


    No actually, it would suggest you have a monumental chip on your shoulder.

    Says someone who is so worried people not believing in the same fairy tales he does.

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  467. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Kimble,

    Your reason, evidence & logic will not dislodge SB’s belief that he will live forever. First he has to admit that when he dies it is all over. That is a very big thing to ask of someone. He is not about to confront his fear of death and admit your right.

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  468. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Gosh Kimble you are certainly on track for the award for the angriest man on the internet. If evolution is a scientific theory then it should be able to be critiqued,surely? It is supposed to be falsifiable.

    Can I ask were you were this angry when you were a Christian? Because honestly you are not doing your cause any favours now.

    Evolution may be true. But it has to be able to be critiqued and indeed falsified. Otherwise it is not science. And it may be false,even from a scientific point of view. Many scientific theories have been falsified or replaced by new understanding.

    To be honest I think you have stumbled from one religion to another. Being angry at the church you are now worshipping at the feet of natural selection and its prophet Charles Darwin.

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  469. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Can I ask were you were this angry when you were a Christian?

    Someone lies about what you say, you hold them to task over it, challenge them to back it up, and that makes you angry? Fuck that. Do YOU want to take up the challenge and find those quotes?

    If evolution is a scientific theory then it should be able to be critiqued,surely?

    And it has been. For 150 years. And it stands stronger today than ever. It is probably THE most tested theory in the history of man.

    But it has to be able to be critiqued and indeed falsified.

    I am sure you mean it has to be falsifiable. And that has absolutely nothing to do with what the creationists in this thread have been doing. All you guys have done is make false claims about the topic and when you’ve been corrected, time after time, you ignore that to move on to some other false claim. Shown evidence of observed evolution, you guys forget you ever asked the fucking question.

    To falsify something, you first have to know what it is. The mistakes you guys have made, the elementary false gotchas you have attempted, show that you dont know what evolution is, how it works, or where the frontiers of knowledge are in the field.

    You aren’t trying to critique anything, so don’t try and sell that shit around here.

    To be honest I think you have stumbled from one religion to another.

    Yeah, and atheism is a religion too, right? Forget all the observable evidence, forget all the supporting evidence, forget all the practical applications of the science we enjoy every day. I must only believe in evolution because its my new fucking religion. Pathetic.

    That is why creationists are stupid; you simply cannot get out of the religious mindset. Anything that contradicts your religion must itself be a religion. The ONLY reason you do not believe in evolution, is because of your religion. And when you can’t bully your way through the facts, you simply assert that someone else’s belief is as ridiculously baseless as your own. Well ours isn’t.

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  470. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Kimble you are quite wrong. I was a Christian when I started looking at the evidence for evolution and I had no view on it one way or another. God could have used evolution over millions of years to bring about the earth and the inhabitants on it?

    But having studied it I think its a wrong theory,it hasn’t actually occurred.

    The examples of evolution happening which were cited on this thread are tiny examples of microbes evolving resistances. That is not an example of an organism getting new information and evolving new body plans. Indeed someone else,it may have been wat, said the question was unfair because evolution happens so slowly over millions of years you can’t observe it actually happening.

    But if it is true there should be hundreds of well documented examples of this evolving into that which then evolved into that. But there are not!!!

    So it is a substitute religion for many people. It provides them with a world origins explanation without God. Once you ask yourself the question-is this really true? You may find your eyes opened.

    And by the way you write in a thoroughly unpleasant and rude manner and you should be ashamed of the way you call people stupid. Arrogance amounting to hubris does not win any arguments.

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  471. SGA (804 comments) says:

    Scott, imagine that some guy was trying to turn you away from christianity by using what was written in the bible. As the conversation progressed however, it became clear that this guy had a very limited understanding of what was actually in the bible; instead, he seemed to have picked up a lot of half truths and distortions from somewhere. Despite your best efforts, he clung to what he thought he knew. You’d find it pretty frustrating, I imagine.

    Talking to you about evolution is a lot like this…

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  472. UglyTruth (3,957 comments) says:

    Shown evidence of observed evolution, you guys forget you ever asked the fucking question.

    Micro evolution and macro evolution are two different things. Micro evolution is adaption, which definitely happens.
    Macro evolution is evolutionary species genesis, which doesn’t happen. The closest I’ve heard of are ring species, but this could be due to social behaviours rather than a lack of ability to procreate.

    Darwin’s theory has more in common with athiesm than it does with science.

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  473. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    God could have used evolution over millions of years to bring about the earth and the inhabitants on it?

    So could any magical pixie. Or no magical pixie at all. All positions are equally valid in the complete absence of data. And the data you guys routinely put up as proof is always rubbish.

    But having studied it I think its a wrong theory,it hasn’t actually occurred.

    Then you went seriously wrong somewhere in your “study”, because the evidence is clear. It isn’t just a few things that someone has drawn a tenuous connection between. It is consistent with every piece of data that is found, and every new biological process that is discovered. There is not a single piece of evidence to show that evolution is wrong. Not one. And that’s all it would take. One example that cannot be explained by evolution.

    Pre-cambrian bunnies. Go find them.

    All you have done is argue from ignorance (how could X have evolved?) and argue from incredulity.

    You don’t even know what the word “theory” means! You use it here as if it means “hunch” or “idea”, which explains why you are so arrogant as to think your baseless “hunch” or “idea” is somehow its equal.

    But if it is true there should be hundreds of well documented examples of this evolving into that which then evolved into that. But there are not!!!

    That’s right, there are literally THOUSANDS! Somehow you missed this when you were “studying”. Seriously, there are thousands. And the list is growing every year. And not a single example can be found that is inconsistent with the theory of evolution.

    So it is a substitute religion for many people. It provides them with a world origins explanation without God.

    No it isn’t, and no it doesn’t. Evolution says nothing about world origins and the fact you claim it does once again proves you don’t know the first thing about the subject.

    You obviously didn’t “study” it. And you are stupid if you think you can convince anyone you did when you make fundamental errors like claiming there isn’t enough evidence or that evolution explains world origins, among many others.

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  474. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    SGA- nonsense! I think evolution is supposed to be a simple theory. But your frustration is because the facts are not on your side. You believe it. Why doesn’t everyone?

    More do not believe in evolution as a purely natural process than do believe in it,according to the polls.

    Actually the more you think about it the dafter it seems. Natural forces and chance over time,descent with modification brought all this into existence? You really believe that?

    Whereas a pre-existing intelligence has a chance at creating something. Natural forces do not.

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  475. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Kimble -you have not provided one example of anything. But I am done responding to you. You are a cracked bell,signifying nothing.

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  476. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Ugly Truth-very well put.

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  477. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    Darwin’s theory has more in common with athiesm than it does with science.

    I hope you die of Aids, as that is the lightest, yet still just, punishment for writing something that stupid.

    But you do show the next tactic of the desperate creationist; splitting hairs. Micro evolution happens, but macro doesn’t? Bullshit. http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB910.htm

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  478. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    You creationist retards are the stupidest people on the face of the planet. You can’t even google: http://lmgtfy.com/?q=examples+of+evolution

    Natural forces and chance over time,descent with modification brought all this into existence? You really believe that?

    Nope. Who taught you that?

    Seriously, who told you that?

    Was it an expert in evolution? I guarantee not. Tell us the person who told you that, and what they said. If you dont, well, that will tell us everything we need to know.

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  479. Scott (1,703 comments) says:

    Kimble- “I hope you die of Aids, as that is the lightest, yet still just, punishment for writing something that stupid.”

    Good to see Kimble riled up. He is the most disagreeable and angriest person on Kiwiblog at the moment. Hopefully DPF can blog about evolution again soon!?

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  480. SPC (5,355 comments) says:

    Micro adaption only, but not macro across species …. then how does one explain life originating in water and ending on land?

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  481. Kimble (4,375 comments) says:

    At least I am honest Scott.

    And it should be obvious from your decision not to name the person who told you that evolution was about bringing life and the universe into existence, that that person either doesnt exist or was simply some other creationist who was just as ignorant as you are.

    then how does one explain life originating in water and ending on land?

    The typical creationist response is that it didn’t; everything that is alive today was alive in slightly different forms in the past but were still the same species as today. But dont ask them what barrier prevents macro evolution. Its God. But they will kill themselves to avoid saying that.

    Then when you ask them to explain why nothing in the fossil record supports that assertion they will tell you that carbon dating is junk science.

    Then when you point out that the problems they identify with carbon dating do not lead to their conclusions and that there are other methods of dating which confirm the fossil record they will say that fossilization can occur much more rapidly than “science” says it does.

    Then when you point out that the examples of speed fossilisation they are identifying isnt actual fossilisation they will say … . Fast forward a little bit and you will more than likely find out that they really do believe that the earth is only 6,000 years old.

    When all they need to do is find a single fossil to bring down the whole evolution edifice, its somewhat bizarre that they spend their time lying about evolution instead. Find one fossil. Only one.

    Creationists have claimed to have found those in the past; fraud every time. But dont be surprised if you have to explain to creationists why they cant just expect people to take their word on the legitimacy of their discovery and that others should be allowed to study it as well. If they are true to form, they will lie about access to other (real) fossils being denied to creationist scientists.

    Its a pattern.

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