July 16, 2010

on Creatio-volution

If you believe God made the world, you can believe he made humans from apes a common ancestor to apes.  Easy hop.  What bothers *me* though, is that scientists are supposed to be skeptics, not believers, and yet Evolution is taken on faith.

It never offends me if someone wants to blend science with faith.  What perturbs me is the hypocrisy of those who should be our guardians of knowledge.  (I'm resisting a contradictory sidebar about Genesis 1-3 and 'knowledge' here.)  By definition, Scientists ought to be agnostic about everything, but in practice they're atheists.  And maybe that much is fine.  But declaring that theories are facts - well, that's just downright unscientific!

Assuming there is no God, I'd agree that bazillions of years would be needed to balance out the insanely long odds of macro-evolution actually happening.  Yes, that's somewhat plausible.  If there were no God, I'd agree Evolution must be what explains life today.

But assuming God *is*, and even assuming a very old earth, I have heard of no evidence to show that one kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus or species evolved from another.  Thus, reversing the first sentence of this post - if you can believe God directed evolution through bazillions of years, then you can believe God brought life forth from thin air, dirt and water.  Easy hop.

Skeptics ought to be skeptical.  Believers, believe whatever seems most believable.  I just want to go on record that what bothers me most is when this tide turns one way or the other from social pressure, more than anything else.  I don't like when clerical authorities pronounce (and enforce) unfounded dogmas, and I feel just the same with these high priests of "science".

The earth is the Lord's, and all that is in it.  That may just be all that we know.


James F. McGrath said...

Bill, you're parroting propaganda that you've heard. How many actual books by scientists about the science of evolution have you read? I think it would probably only take reading one to make you realize that the old "evolution is taken on faith" canard is (to put it as charitably as possible) a misrepresentation of how science works, how conclusions in this branch of the natural sciences have been drawn, and what evidence supports its conclusions.

Bill Heroman said...

Macro vs. Micro, James. The little stuff doesn't prove the big stuff. And it's a bit uncharacteristic of you to assume I'm 'parroting propaganda'. But thanks anyway.

Btw, I know you got mobbed by mythicists when I posted about your Price post, but how come you hit me now and not then? I mean, speaking of "how science works"...

James F. McGrath said...

Bill, again I submit that the "micro vs. macro" claim is something you have heard from antievolutionists which would not bear exposure to actual scientific information.

What have you read on this topic? What sort of research did you do before offering these assertions? If I recommended a book to read, would you read it?

Bill Heroman said...

James, I'm honestly not offended, but you are technically insulting me. The only books I've read on the subject are my HS & college Biology textbooks. The only folks I've consulted on it since that time have been HS colleagues. But the micro/macro thing is so logically obvious any 14 year old can come up with that instantly.

If you have a book to recommend, **on why the micro actually does prove the macro**, I'll put it on my list. But I'm not sure you realize yet that my post wasn't about the facts of what scientists do or don't argue. My post is about how E's proponents (that I've seen) don't often go into explaining the theory. They just assert a lot while demeaning the opposition.

So yeah, if you've got THE silver bullet reference source, I'll check it out. But I wasn't (aren't) really that concerned about Evolution itself.

My chief beef in this post is that an awful lot of people seem mostly swayed by the popular momentum.

James F. McGrath said...

Bill, you are the one, together with opponents of evolution, who are demeaning a theory without going into it. Can a 14 year old with no training translate the New Testament from Hebrew or Greek into English? The idea that questions of evidence about the phenomenological and genetic relationship between all living things can be settled by "common sense" makes as much sense as suggesting that the question of whether the Earth rotates can be settled that way.

Try Kenneth Miller's Finding Darwin's God. He is one of the many evolutionary biologists who has taken the time to do what you say they haven't, namely present the evidence in detail so that people can understand it.

We can resume the discussion after you've read it!

James F. McGrath said...

P.S. You can find it for $6 on Amazon.com.

Bill Heroman said...

"We can resume the discussion after you've read it!"

As enriching as this conversation has been so far...

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