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Who believes in evolution?

Who believes in evolution?

  • I believe

    Votes: 23 60.5%
  • Bogus

    Votes: 15 39.5%
  • What's evolution?

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    38

Eriol

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Folks, let's remind ourselves that there is truth on both sides of the fence... or so I believe, since I'm stuck right at the middle of it :D. Or more precisely, I'm stuck at both sides of it.
 

Helcaraxë

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Elessar II said:
Well that's funny, because I believe that evolution is a bunch of humanistic bogus that was made up by people who just couldn't face the fact that there is a God in heaven who is in control of their lives.

"In control of their lives"? Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't it a fundamental concept of Christianity that humans are in control of their own lives? It's called free will. ;)

MB
 

Helcaraxë

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Eliot said:
Well, as a Christian, you're supposed to completely devote your life to God.

But, yes, every human, even Christians, has a free will.
That's a somewhat contradictory statement, even if Christians are only supposed to devote their lives to God, even though they don't have to. If you have free will but your not really supposed to use it, what's the point?

MB
 

HLGStrider

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HGLStrider, have you ever heard of God Inspired Evolution? Why couldn't a God make man out of monkeys? He still could do it in the 6 days 7 nights thing in Genesis. Evolution is fact. When I look at my brother's dog, I notice many similarities between him and a wolf. Is that just my imagination or is it years of evolution?
It's micro evolution. And I addressed God inspired evolution in one of my posts, read up. Obviously he could do it, but I don't believe he would. I don't see why God would choose to create man in a way that requires death so frequently.

If I breed dogs I can eventually create a new breed. I can even create a breed that cannot interbreed with other breeds. However, the result is still a canine. You can make a wolf into a dog. . .but you can't make a dog into a cat. Mirco vs macro. Read up on it.

Evolution is not fact.

that is the forming of mutations in species,
after breedeing fruitflies for about 10 years there were however few, fruitflies with a totally different appearance then their ancestors (they had red eyes instead of black)
Micro-evolution again. Did they ever turn into dragon flies?

Mutation is the main foundation of the evolution theory and it has been proven.
Proven that mutation exists? Obviously, and mutation normally kills, maims, or renders sterile what it mutates. Out of one million mutations, or more, one will be good. Normally the good will also bring bad.

And no scientist has ever said that Evolution is untrue, because anyone who says that cannot be a scientist, regardless of their profession.
This is a very unresearched opinion.

That's a somewhat contradictory statement, even if Christians are only supposed to devote their lives to God, even though they don't have to. If you have free will but your not really supposed to use it, what's the point?
I don't agree with the statement "God controls your life." I'd prefer God leads the life of those who choose to follow him. . .and it is a choice. You choose to follow. Christians aren't only supposed to devote to God, however. You have to devote to family if you have family, which most people do, render onto Ceaser which means devote a little to your country, and support yourself, which means devoting yourself to a job, but all of that has to take second place to God.
 

HLGStrider

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I'm curious, does anyone here know what I'm talking about when I bring up micro-vs-macro-evolution, because everytime someone challenges me with proof of evolution it is proof of micro-evolution which is something I earlier stated I believed in. . .

Eriol, you're a biologist. Can you define it so that I make sense? Or you make sense and make me look like I'm making sense. . .
 

Khôr’nagan

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Originally posted by HLGStrider
This is a very unresearched opinion.
Indeed! But that makes it no less true than if it were. Now, as I was saying, the very fabric of a scientist is based upon the principle that something is either true or untrue based upon the evidence that support and hinder it. And therefore any scientist who refuses to believe that something is either true or untrue regardless of whatever evidence that supports or hinders it is not a true scientist at heart. They can say they're a scientist and act like a scientist and look like a scientist, but if they can't come to accept that something they believe to be false would actually be true completely disregarding all evidence, then they do not stand for what it means to be a scientist: And that is to base all knowledge upon evidence and nothing else. And thus if someone disregards evidence, they don't have what it takes to be a true scientist. I true scientist would be impartial to whatever the truth is, and would simply treat it as one would treat math. For them, 1 + 1 = 2 is like saying humans are contain carbon. But if they suddenly discovered evidence that irrefutably means that 1 + 1 = 3, or humans don't contain carbon, they don't care about what makes sense; if the evidence has been proved true and can indicate nothing other than the absense of carbon in the human body, no previous assumption would matter to them. They would simply cross out "2" as the answer and write "3." In other words, to a true scientist, evidence means everything. And therefore dismissing evidence alltogether about something goes completely against what it means to be a true scientist, and the person therefore is not a true scientist. I myself am very much so considering a future in science; I have been watching Stephen Hawking videos since I was 5 (though I didn't truly understand them until 8), so needless to say I've had an interest since very early on. I am a firm believer in evolution, though as I have said elsewhere, god could have easily caused evolution, but still evolution happened.

I cannot personally see how anyone could not believe it took place, although I'm not so arrogant as to think I know better or that everyone thinks the same way, so I understand that the way others see the evidence leads them to other conclusions. And as far as I am concerned (for the moment, anyway), whether someone believes in it or not doesn't matter. What matters is the world today, and its troubles and needs. It won't matter if people believe in evolution or not if we're all dead, now will it? Therefore I would not even begin to criticize or argue with someone about their beliefs of evolution, since the world now has more pressing concerns to be dealt with, and people should look rather to cease pain and suffering before they come to debate the fine points of scientific theory. Of course, at least for many of us, we must spend what time we have before becoming adults to enjoy what we enjoy, and if that is to argue about evolution, then so be it! But I've got some homework to do, and must now say fairwell.
 

HLGStrider

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But that makes it no less true than if it were.
And why do you believe it is true?
The why is very important.

they don't care about what makes sense;
Again, a very unresearched opinion.

I myself am very much so considering a future in science;
I hope you learn to research the opposing side before you do. . .and research it well.

And as far as I am concerned (for the moment, anyway), whether someone believes in it or not doesn't matter.
It does matter if it isn't true. It does matter if one reads data using this as the basis, when this is wrong. A lot of data to supposedly proved evolution is looked at under the premesis of evolution being true. For instance, fossils are dated often by what fossils they are found next to and where that fossil appears on the evolutionary tree.

. What matters is the world today, and its troubles and needs
Isn't this a bit of a red herring?

and people should look rather to cease pain and suffering before they come to debate the fine points of scientific theory
If I say that I have given to a charity in the past that reduced pain and suffering am I capable of continuing this debate in your opinion? If not do I have to leave?
 

Barliman Butterbur

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HLGStrider said:
... I addressed God inspired evolution in one of my posts... I don't see why God would choose to create man in a way that requires death so frequently.

Evolution is not fact.
Then what's been going on here for the last several billion years???

I don't agree with the statement "God controls your life." I'd prefer God leads the life of those who choose to follow him. . .
There's an even more basic question preceding: There are many of us for whom it first needs to be settled that God even exists.

Lotho
 

Eriol

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Khôr’nagan said:
I cannot personally see how anyone could not believe it took place, although I'm not so arrogant as to think I know better or that everyone thinks the same way, so I understand that the way others see the evidence leads them to other conclusions.
(Emphasis mine)

The problem with the purely objectivist view of science that you explained, Khôr'nagan, is that there are no purely objective human beings. It is, by your definition of a scientist, impossible to be a scientist. And there is also the fact that evidence ALWAYS points in different directions. And there is also the fact that the evidence-collecting apparatus is theory-laden and therefore already biased to a certain conclusion.

This is not a denial of science's usefulness, it is a list of its shortcomings. It is very powerful, but it is not perfect. In the case at hand, it is a known fact that most biologists are evolutionists; and that therefore the evidence is full of evolutionary assumptions. Both sides of the controversy acknowledge that; evolutionists don't have to apologize for it. We have to do research, to collect evidence, and we have to use our theories to design the "evidence-collecting" methods and experiments. This is surely frustrating to a creationist, but it's how things are. No one forbids a creationist from developing experiments and collecting evidence based on a creationist theory. The point is, most evidence we have was collected by evolutionists, described by evolutionists, analyzed by evolutionists, and published by evolutionists. That there is a bias in research is obvious.

This does not happen in biology only, it is a constant in science. The difference between biology and, for instance, particle physics is that biologists deal with much more complex beings, and therefore the evidence points in many different directions. The "underdeterminacy of data" -- the fact that many interpretations fit the same set of data -- is a constant in science, as long as feeble human beings are collecting it. But biological data are more "underdetermined" than physical data related to particles. Even in physics there are some fields with disputing theories, just as we see in biology, only they are far less controversial. We don't have a perfectly satisfactory fluid theory, for instance (as far as I know). We DO have a perfectly satisfactory theory of optics, and you see the result of that: no one does research in "classical optics" anymore. It is no longer a scientific field (in the sense that "scientists work at it"). It's a technological field; we use it to build telescopes and mirrors with perfect assurance.

Where there is research, there is doubt.
 

Eriol

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HLGStrider said:
I'm curious, does anyone here know what I'm talking about when I bring up micro-vs-macro-evolution, because everytime someone challenges me with proof of evolution it is proof of micro-evolution which is something I earlier stated I believed in. . .

Eriol, you're a biologist. Can you define it so that I make sense? Or you make sense and make me look like I'm making sense. . .
Micro- x Macro- Evolution is this. Both sides of the controversy agree that there is mutation and variation and that animal species change over time (this was not agreed upon before Darwin, however). But there is disagreement over whether a lineage in change can cross the species boundary and become a new species. As Elgee said, creationists believe that no matter how much breeding you take, you can't make a dog become a cat.

Well, strictly speaking, according to evolutionary theory there is no fixed specific boundary. There are species; they are clearly defined in nature by the old biological definition, "two populations that can interbreed and produce fertile offspring belong to the same species". So if we have two animals who can't interbreed and produce fertile offspring, they don't belong to the same species. Simple and empirical.

(I'll skip the cases of asexual organisms and microscopic organisms for simplicity)

But we know that the breeding barriers are just as malleable by mutation and natural selection as any other trait. We can produce a Great Dane (and a Chihuahua) out of a Wolf over some thousands of years; there are many traits that were changed by selective breeding there. But the breeding barriers are traits, themselves. Let me list a few breeding barriers:

1. Premating mechanisms:

a- habitat isolation
b- temporal isolation (different reproductive periods)
c- behavioral isolation (the sexes are not attracted to each other)
d- mechanical isolation (incompatibility of reproductive organs)
e- (in plants) different pollinators
f- gametic isolation (the gametes of one species do not survive or fertilize the opposite gamete after copulation)

2. Postmating mechanisms

a- Hybrid inviability
b- Hybrid sterility
c- Hybrid breakdown (reduced viability of subsequent generations of hybrids)

Lots of different ways to create a species. All of those traits are genetically-based. And therefore they are subject to mutation and natural selection. It is NOT a matter of phenotipical (physical) similarity; two very similar populations may belong to different species.

Once speciation has occurred, the two gene pools are disjointed, and the two populations can no longer exchange genes. The "diluting factor" is over. And great change is possible. This is what would be called "macro-evolution" -- the diverging of two lineages which were once a single lineage, and the associated change in appearance.

Evolutionary theory can account for macro-evolution quite easily. Speciation has been observed. The concept of speciation deals a blow to the notion that species boundaries are inviolable.

But creationists are right when they say that a dog can't become a cat; this is also asserted by evolutionists. Evolution does not work backwards. It always works with past changes, and never "backtracks" those changes. Dogs and cats once shared an ancestor which was neither a dog nor a cat; he had what we call "primitive traits". When the two lineages diverged (by speciation), then each evolved in a different "direction", according to its habitat and niche and other factors. Evolution does not claim that a dog became a cat, or that a cat became a dog; it claims that the primitive ancestor diverged into the two lineages.
 

Bombadillo

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Lotho_Pimple said:
There's an even more basic question preceding: There are many of us for whom it first needs to be settled that God even exists.
this is not the point of argument here.

there is a very good book about the evolution theory in dutch.
its called cheese and the evolution theory.

It has great examples of evolution and a chapter about how god does not rule out evolutionism. I will translate some parts of that book over the time and post them here, those who can read dutch, i know there are very very few, should read this book, its written by bas haring.
 

Barliman Butterbur

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Eriol said:
(Emphasis mine)
... most biologists are evolutionists; and that therefore the evidence is full of evolutionary assumptions. Both sides of the controversy acknowledge that; evolutionists don't have to apologize for it. We have to do research, to collect evidence, and we have to use our theories to design the "evidence-collecting" methods and experiments. This is surely frustrating to a creationist, but it's how things are. No one forbids a creationist from developing experiments and collecting evidence based on a creationist theory. The point is, most evidence we have was collected by evolutionists, described by evolutionists, analyzed by evolutionists, and published by evolutionists. That there is a bias in research is obvious.
So where are the creationists who dive into this mountain of evolutionist evidence to rigorously refute it? ;):)

Lotho
 

Eriol

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Lotho_Pimple said:
So where are the creationists who dive into this mountain of evolutionist evidence to rigorously refute it? ;):)

Lotho
Oh, they are around, here and there, trying their best to do that. But they can't overcome what I called "the underdeterminacy of data". (That's an ugly name). Evolution, as all science, can't be "rigorously refuted"; and neither can Creationism. The best we can say is that there is more evidence on one side than on the other (in this case, Evolution ;)).

But in the end I don't think this is strictly a scientific debate... it is much more of a sociological phenomenon. I have posted my ideas about this side of the controversy elsewhere in the forum. Atheists hijacked evolution, and theists felt they had to debunk evolution to maintain theism as intellectually respectable. Alas, both sides are wrong :(.
 

HLGStrider

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Then what's been going on here for the last several billion years???
Meaning you think that since the universe has been around for billion years there would have to be some evolution going on because time obviously creates evolution somehow?
I missed the point to this statement.

There's an even more basic question preceding: There are many of us for whom it first needs to be settled that God even exists.
If God doesn't exist you sort of have to believe in evolution, I suppose, but there were atheists before Evolution and there will be after it.

So where are the creationists who dive into this mountain of evolutionist evidence to rigorously refute it?
Would you prefer house addresses or phonenumbers? How long do you have?
 

Barliman Butterbur

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HLGStrider said:
Meaning you think that since the universe has been around for billion years there would have to be some evolution going on because time obviously creates evolution somehow?
I missed the point to this statement.
Time has something to do with it, but genetics and natural selection operating over time is the main thing. If you think it's a matter of time, then you don't understand evolution.

If God doesn't exist you sort of have to believe in evolution, I suppose, but there were atheists before Evolution and there will be after it.

Would you prefer house addresses or phonenumbers? How long do you have?
Evidently you sink to sarcasm because you have nothing else to offer. I have all the time in the world, give me names, house addresses AND phone numbers.

Lotho
 

Elessar II

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So where are the creationists who dive into this mountain of evolutionist evidence to rigorously refute it?
Well, there may be some "evidence" supporting evolution, but you have to remember evolution is still a theory, and that even the most revered evolutionist can't prove conclusively that evolution is true. You also have to remember that there is a lot of evidence against evolution, and that evolution has contradicted and recontradicted itself over the past century.
And although I have done a lot of study into the evolutionary theory, I have come to the conclusion that six-day creation designed by God is truth, while the man-made theory of evolution is false.
 

Barliman Butterbur

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Eriol said:
Oh, they are around, here and there, trying their best to do that. But they can't overcome what I called "the underdeterminacy of data". (That's an ugly name). Evolution, as all science, can't be "rigorously refuted"; and neither can Creationism. The best we can say is that there is more evidence on one side than on the other (in this case, Evolution ;)).

But in the end I don't think this is strictly a scientific debate... it is much more of a sociological phenomenon. I have posted my ideas about this side of the controversy elsewhere in the forum. Atheists hijacked evolution, and theists felt they had to debunk evolution to maintain theism as intellectually respectable. Alas, both sides are wrong :(.
As always, you put up an interesting post! :) However, you'll have to do better than "they are around here and there..." How about some names of real people, and their research?

So far, the evolutionists seem to have the hard evidence that can be shown to anyone who cares to look into it. I'd to see what the creationists have offered on their side, because I'm curious as to what they have to say.

Lotho
 

Eriol

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Elessar II said:
Well, there may be some "evidence" supporting evolution, but you have to remember evolution is still a theory, and that even the most revered evolutionist can't prove conclusively that evolution is true.
It's a "theory", just as Gravity, Aerodynamics, Quantum Mechanics... all "theories". You are mixing the technical and the layman senses of the word "theory". Theories are all that science has to offer, and yet we don't see people saying "Gravity is just a theory", or "Electricity is just a theory".

And none of these theories -- none -- can be "proven conclusively". Not even the most revered Gravitationist can prove conclusively that Gravity is true. If you want absolute proof, you'll have to stick with mathematics ;). Science does not work with absolute proof. Hey, don't look at me, I didn't make these rules :D.

You also have to remember that there is a lot of evidence against evolution, and that evolution has contradicted and recontradicted itself over the past century.
As happens in all branches of science. Evolution is not unlike any other field of research. However, if we are going to tally contradictions, you may rest assured that Creationism has much more. If we apply the same rules to both field, of course...

I would not call them "contradictions", because just as "proof", "contradictions" are strictly outside the realm of science. I'd call them "inconsistencies", that may be explained with additional data. A contradiction may never be explained. It is simply false. There is no contradiction in either Evolutionism or Creationism.

And although I have done a lot of study into the evolutionary theory, I have come to the conclusion that six-day creation designed by God is truth, while the man-made theory of evolution is false.
And I bet that if you had looked at Evolution with the prior belief that God could have worked through Evolution -- say, if the Bible had said "and God let the animals develop their many species through mutation and natural selection" (an odd phrase for old Moses :)) -- you would have come to the conclusion that evolution is true, and that the man-made theory of creation is false. My point here is this: you disbelieve in Evolution because of the Biblical account, not because of the data. And this is a logical position, as witness:

1. If you believe that the Bible is God's Word
2. If you believe that the Bible rules out evolution

3. Then Evolution is wrong.

If one wants to defend Evolution, one must show that one of the two premises is false. Most evolutionists attacked premise 1; and this is why Evolution is seen as a Godless theory. However, I believe that the problem lies in premise 2. The Bible does not rule out evolution. Check for yourself. I argued this issue extensively with Thorin and Elendil3119, both of them much more schooled in Biblical matters than I am, and they never could point out a contradiction in my views. In other words, both views, which I may call "literal" and "metaphorical", may be applied to the first chapters of Genesis without contradiction.

If you choose the literal over the metaphorical for no good reason, you may be wrong. I choose the metaphorical over the literal for what is (to me) a very good reason -- the data. The data are overwhelmingly on the side of Evolution. (Remember that the data also come from God; God is the Author of Nature as well as the Author of the Bible. It is our duty to try to reconcile both of God's books, as there can be no falsity in either).

I recall to you the passage in Acts in which a man says to Philip, "how will I understand it [Scripture], if no one will explain it to me?". Scripture is not simple. And to assume that all that is written there is literal is, well, an assumption, not a Biblical precept ;). You don't see stated anywhere in the Bible that "Scripture is never metaphorical. It always has only a literal meaning". That assumption may be wrong.

That's all it takes for a Christian to look at Evolution with new eyes: the reassurance that there is "a reading" (among many) of Genesis that allows for Evolution; and that there is no firm rule for reading the Bible. So that both readings, literal and metaphorical, have the same merit, and we have to choose among them freely, based on our experience, with the help of the Holy Spirit.

So do it, Elessar. Look at Evolution with new eyes :).

Lotho, I found this site:

http://www.icr.org/ .

There are links there. Creation Science has many adherents in the U.S., very few outside it (as far as I know). There are some respectable men there, writing interesting books. I have books by Michael Behe and William Dembski, and I enjoyed them a lot, and they asked very good questions. Evolution theory is not refractory to good questions ;). Google some on these names if you want to know more, and also on "Intelligent Design".
 

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