Canada Science vs. Belief

Discussion in 'Canada Discussion Boards' started by TragicLad, Apr 30, 2003.

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  1. TragicLad Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 29, 2000
    star 4
    Carrying over the discussion that sparked in the theological discussion thread. We were talking about evolution/creationism and the age of the Earth - but I want to throw the discussion open a little wider.

    It frightens me to see what I percieve to be a dumbing down of science and erosion of rational thought. A candle being snuffed out in a demon haunted world, as it were.

    Does anyone else feel the revulsion I do when you see things like 'Crossing Over' or watch the Learning Channel become devoted to car chases and freak shows? Does anyone else fear that in an age of genetic manipulation, pandemics, epidemics, nanotechnology, cryptology, cloning, stem cell research... that our leaders and decision makers will not have the basic science background necessary to make an informed decision?
  2. Admiral_Thrawn60 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2000
    star 6
    I think it's more of a problem in the States than it is here (coincidentally, today is their National Day of Prayer). Bush has banned stem cell research, has he not?

    As for those TV shows, they just put on the air what they think people will watch.
  3. im_posessed Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2002
    star 3
    *raises hand*
    um...I have a question

    why must it be science VS. religion?

    this runs on the assumption that those of us who have a belief in God (more faith than just religion, but we won't go there) have no appriciation or use for science, and that those who are Scientists have no room in their lives for the spiritual
  4. Admiral_Thrawn60 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2000
    star 6
    Well, in my cases, religion and science contradict each other. Let's look at Christianity, for example. The Christians believe that God created the Earth in 7 days, and man has always been here, and that we started with two humans who were seduced by a talking snake. The scientists believe that the world was created slowly over thousands or even millions of years, and man has only been here for a relatively short amount of time, compared to the age of the earth. Scientists point to dinosaur bones as evidence that earth is far older than history, and to cavemen remains as evidence of evolution.

    Science and spirituality can go together. But science and most religions? Absolutely not.
  5. Wolf Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2002
    star 4
    ALthough if you look at history, Religion has constantly been changing based on the developments of science. Newton was still a reigious man and also a science guy. He created Diesim which is the belief in the fact that god created the universe then let it be.

    I think we can all agree that science is real. Religion has a very important place in our hearts though, it tells us our history, gives us hope and faith. And also gives a strong sense of belonging.

  6. Admiral_Thrawn60 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2000
    star 6
    Religion has constantly been changing based on the developments of science.

    Exactly. It is human nature to be inquisitive. What we cannot explain with science, we explain with religion. Then we realize that we were wrong, so we adapt our religion. Look at the ancient civilizations, for example. They thought volcanos and lightning storms meant the gods were angry. They then discovered what really causes those things, and religion evolved. I won't be at all surprised if the basic foundation of Christianity is someday proven to be wrong.
  7. im_posessed Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2002
    star 3
    AT60
    you mentioned only one of the ways to view the information in Genesis. Other Christians believe God created the eirth by initiating the Big Bang and starting evolution
    the two can be brought together, if the focus is on faith and belief, not on dogma and tradition
  8. Admiral_Thrawn60 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2000
    star 6
    Other Christians believe God created the eirth by initiating the Big Bang and starting evolution

    So why doesn't the bible just say that? And where do Adam and Eve and the snake come in?
  9. TragicLad Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 29, 2000
    star 4
    Actually im_possessed - it's not strictly a science vs. religion thing. That's why I chose to label this Science vs. Belief.

    Religion - while being a brick wall in many aspects for science, has also been the driving force for many, many scientists. An urge to better understand and appreciate God's creation was the primary motivation behind a small majority of past scientists.

    This thread is for discussing any instance where a belief -be it metaphysical, political, spiritual, ethical- comes into conflict with science. And where applicable, to discuss how those conflicts affect us as Canadians.


    ---
    AT60, it should be noted that a literal interpretation of Genesis is a minority viewpoint in most Christian denominations. The majority view is that Genesis is to be viewed as a parable or a metaphor.

    You are correct that Young Earth Creationism is primarily an American phenomena. I've yet to come across a reasonable explanation of why that seems to be so.
  10. Admiral_Thrawn60 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2000
    star 6
    I've yet to come across a reasonable explanation of why that seems to be so.

    They're more conservative (syn: closed minded).

    As far as I know, it's mostly Catholics who take Genesis literally. I used to date a Catholic, and that's what she believed. Drove me crazy.
  11. Woofer Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2001
    star 4
    Just popping in here with a question. Why is the belief in the book of Genesis being portrayed as Christian?

    It is a Jewish book afterall?

    What is current Jewish thinking on the contents of the Pentateuch? Is it understood to be allegory or fact?

    To get back on topic, I too feel that what passes for "science" today is fairly weak when it comes to mainstream knowledge. I think a good part of that is to blame on the scientific community to begin with. They basically live within a closed system, with their own rules and ways of thinking. Even amongst scientists you very rarely get cross communications, so a physicist working on some aspect of string theory is completely oblivious to certain mathematical contructs that might make their work simpler.

    With that state of affairs finding the people to write books for the layman becomes increasingly difficult, and certainly regular science reporters have a difficult time explaining the nuances of research in such a way that "the rest of us" would understand and appreciate.

    So what happens you get garbage science shows on TV.
  12. Primrodo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 23, 2002
    star 4
    Just to reference the Dinosaur thing.

    Many people believe that Dinos co-existed with human beings...thats right you heard me.

    There are cases in the Book of Job that talks about such beasts, Behemoth and Leviathan.

    Also human footprints alongside or over Dinosaur prints. *

    And one neat speculation was of Dragons actually being Dinosaurs. *

    :)
  13. Admiral_Thrawn60 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2000
    star 6
    And one neat speculation was of Dragons actually being Dinosaurs.

    Those nutjobs overlooked one very important point. Dragons never existed.
  14. Primrodo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 23, 2002
    star 4
    Ah but Dinosaurs did.

    Dragon's like say King Arthur were based on reality. Then leave it to authors and people to make it more extravagant.

    Think about the commonalitys.

    Take a look here. and read what it says.

    Its a valid theory as much as evolution is.
  15. Admiral_Thrawn60 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2000
    star 6
    Personally, I believe it's all a bunch of hooey.

    There were dinosaurs. They died 65 million years ago. Millions of years later came Homo Habilias or whatever the hell they were called. Then Homo Erectus. Then the Neanderthan Men. Then the Cro-Magnon Men. We continued to evolve. Fast forward. Joseph pokes Mary. Mary has Jesus. Jesus is a crazy demagogue. People rally around him. He dies. 2000 years later, they still believe his wild claims.

    That's what I believe, anyway.

    I have a question. Was Mary married when she had Jesus? Because if she wasn't, then that's a solid motive for her to lie and say it was a virgin birth. Remember, back in those days, sex before marriage was considered to be completely unacceptable.
  16. TragicLad Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 29, 2000
    star 4
    Many people believe that Dinos co-existed with human beings

    ummm - from your own source: Other investigations have cast light on some of the unusual features that the advocates of "human footprints" have stumbled over. The elongate tracks are not human, but were formed when the normal mode of a carnivorous dinosaur making tracks was replaced by a "plantigrade" mode. Instead of the dinosaur walking on its toes on the front part of its foot, the metatarsal was dropped and a long, elongate track was formed. This rare mode of behaviour is now known from other sites and there is no real understanding of why it should happen. The people searching for human footprints found plantigrade tracks and misidentified them.

    As for the appearance of dragons in tales of lore and literature, I saw spiders the size of volkswagons in a lot of movies and tv shows. Does that mean that at one point giant spiders existed - or does it just mean man's got an incredible capacity for imagination?


    Its a valid theory as much as evolution is.

    What?!?
    I'm afraid a series of quotes identifying dragons and a couple of creationists asserting this to be so does not make for the basis of a theory. At best, what you have is a hypothesis, and one that stands up well to scrutiny.

    Here is an example of what compelling evidence for your hypothesis would be:
    dinosaur bones that are not fossilized. A trophy. A tool made from the bones. Anything. If these things coexisted, just where the heck are the recent remains?

    Here is an example of an alternate and more workable theory:
    man stumbled across the fossilized remains of dinosaurs and spun fanciful tales of the terrible lizzards. Great beasts who spouted fire, yadda yadda yadda. Do what you're told kids or the boogey-dragon will eat you.

  17. TragicLad Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 29, 2000
    star 4
    With that state of affairs finding the people to write books for the layman becomes increasingly difficult, and certainly regular science reporters have a difficult time explaining the nuances of research in such a way that "the rest of us" would understand and appreciate.

    sigh.
    I miss Carl Sagan.

  18. Primrodo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 23, 2002
    star 4
    The foot prints was just an example. Science says that because it doesn't fit evolution.

    As for the appearance of dragons in tales of lore and literature, I saw spiders the size of volkswagons in a lot of movies and tv shows. Does that mean that at one point giant spiders existed - or does it just mean man's got an incredible capacity for imagination?

    Do we? Tell me one thing that someone made up that no one else has?

    Man cannot create anything he does not see. Its in our very nature. As an artist I can attest to that. A writer will see something that inspires him to write something. They watch people tolearn about types. PAinters paint what they see, their perception. Man cannot create something from nothing.

    What?!?
    I'm afraid a series of quotes identifying dragons and a couple of creationists asserting this to be so does not make for the basis of a theory. At best, what you have is a hypothesis, and one that stands up well to scrutiny.

    Here is an example of what compelling evidence for your hypothesis would be:
    dinosaur bones that are not fossilized. A trophy. A tool made from the bones. Anything. If these things coexisted, just where the heck are the recent remains?

    Here is an example of an alternate and more workable theory:
    man stumbled across the fossilized remains of dinosaurs and spun fanciful tales of the terrible lizzards. Great beasts who spouted fire, yadda yadda yadda. Do what you're told kids or the boogey-dragon will eat you.


    Its just not creationists that have theorized this. Its the best quick sources I could find. Lets not mistake something by asserting evolution as a fact. It IS NOT a fact. Scientists wanted a harder explaination for life than a God one. And I think thats swell and all, but its an IDEA.
    Did you read through the links with an open mind or a condemning one? The fact that Dinosaurs could have been Dragons isn't a bad theory...its not a fact, much as evolution is not a fact. Its an idea. Of course theirs fossilized remains as yet. A worldwide flood would indeed create such a phenomonum (sp?)

    Why is Dragon-Dinos unworkable, less factual? Oh wait thats right, doesn't fit into the fossil record...hmm...well its not like Peking Man was proven wrong.

    Science is something that changes all the time. When the ATOM was first theorized it was a solid sphere. Today it is a mass of energy houseing a nucleus, protons and electrons which are made up of quantum. 100 years from now its very likly that that idea will change again and science will have a new face.

    Science is a way of acknowleging physical characteristics from a set pf rules, physics, chemistry etc. And Evolution goes against these principles.

    I believe in science. I know that when I drop a ball it WILL fall. I call this gravity.

    As a flip side I know that when prayed for peope regain their sight (Seen it with my own eyes).

    Improbable, Impossible are words that describe the human mind when it can't understand the limits of their own mind. God is something no one can never and will never understand. Although when 80,000 people on any given day give their lives and hearts to this creator and belief does that mean we've all accepted the cultural norm?

    Science benefits human life, it doesn't make it better or more right than theology and believeing in God.
  19. legoman Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 14, 2002
    star 3
    You are correct than man is not intelligent enough to create something he has not seen, but I have had dreams of things that have been very large exagerations and somewhat impossible versions of everyday things. It is very possible that around the same time that early man discovered fire, he found a skull of a dead dinosaur. His mind then does the rest by putting them both together in his sleep. It happens to people all the time.
  20. TragicLad Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 29, 2000
    star 4
    >>Tell me one thing that someone made up that no one else has?

    A hyper-inteligent shade of blue?
    Cthulhu and the eldar gods?
    Orks and goblins?
    Gungans?

    Yes - each of these have some grounding, no matter how tenuous, in reality. But that Lucas was able to imagine gungans does not mean that a gungan exists.

    You are making the leap of dragon to dino because it fits the picture you want to create. But there are other possible, and far far more likely interpretations. My previous example of men coming across fossils, or taking the example of the giant spider in films... could dragons not be a gross exaggeration of common lizzards, salamanders or other reptiles?

    There is absolutely nothing to suggest that the folklore of dragons means cohabitation with dinos.

    And YES the fossil record and every other point of evidence we have to work from suggests this to be the case.

    >> worldwide flood would indeed create such a phenomonum

    doo doo da doo doo
    Phenomena doo doo da doo Phenomena doo doo da doo doo da doo doo da dum da dada... (ahem - sorry)

    Look - a worldwide flood would NOT create a fossil record such as we have. A worldwide flood would leave evidence very contrary to what we have. But just dealing with the fossil record alone...

    How do you explain fossil mineralization? Mineralization is the replacement of the original material with a different mineral.

    Buried skeletal remains of modern fauna are negligibly mineralized, including some that biblical archaeology says are quite old - a substantial fraction of the age of the earth in this diluvian geology. For example, remains of Egyptian commoners buried near the time of Moses aren't extensively mineralized.
    Buried skeletal remains of extinct mammalian fauna show quite variable mineralization.
    Dinosaur remains are often extensively mineralized.
    Trilobite remains are usually mineralized - and in different sites, fossils of the same species are composed of different materials.
    How are these observations explained by a sorted deposition of remains in a single episode of global flooding?


    >>Lets not mistake something by asserting evolution as a fact. It IS NOT a fact.

    Well, for the most part you will see me refer to evolution as a theory, rather than fact. But I am guessing that you are suggesting that evolution is a poor or incorrect theory - and you couldn't be any more wrong.

    Evolution is every bit as real as gravity. The evidence is overwhelming. The only way to dismiss evolution is to blindly throw away over a century of findings. You may as well say that when you drop a ball, it will fall up, because gravity is just an 'idea'.
  21. YoungJediNiagara RSA Emeritus FF Canada

    Member Since:
    Mar 23, 2001
    star 4
    Just a small input regarding "time" in the Bible...

    In Genesis if can be read the God created the Universe in 6 days (7th day he rested). If you read further on into the bible you will also see a reference to "a day is like a thousand years to the Lord". If you apply one to the other it makes a little more sense as far as what we conceive as a proper timeline.

    Also the story of Adam and Eve has been crafted into a Sunday School story setting for kids. Lets face it, we all heard about it when we were little and the "snake" to kids has dramatic impact. The majority of us have grown up to think that snakes are evil animals.
    In reality Eve was tempted in much the same way we are today, fighting our conscience and making the wrong choice.

    So if you read the Bible or have heard the stories, you need to take a step back and apply some thought to the stories. Yes they are true, yes they are "enhanced" for dramatic flare, but they are designed to make us think.
  22. Izird Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 4
    Good point, YJN.

    As far as I know, it's mostly Catholics who take Genesis literally

    Actually, for the people who dogmatically argue a 6-day creation of the universe, their problem is that they DON'T take Genesis literally!

    The Hebrew word for "day" is "yom." "Yom" does literally translate as "day," but a "day" in Hebrew does not necessarily refer to a 24-hour period. It can refer to an era, the history of a given generation, or a geological period. Some Christian scientists even suggest that the 6 days refer to evolutionary stages.

    I therefore propose that, even when taken literally, the Bible does not contradict science concerning our origin.
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