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  1. #241  
    Quote Originally Posted by RicoM
    It's quite obvious that you're not ready to take that step yet....no problem, as I said before, God will not abandon you even though you have abandoned him. But you want scientific proof...and here's an article (a bit long) that should help. But currently, short of an angel appearing before you, I don't think you're ready to accept any scientific logic that says anything except what you want it to say....

    http://www.doesgodexist.org/Phamplets/Mansproof.html
    The article does not do what it pro-ports to have done.

    "We have seen a practical proof of God's existence in this brief study."

    Instead it has drawn conclusions based on observation. Like all of science, especially the sciences dealing with the origins of the universe, these conclusions are nothing more than educated guesses.

    Even if correct, however, God's existence is still not known, only surmized.

    THE BEGINNING - A universe with a beginning only means there was a beginning, not that a God was involved.

    THE CAUSE - Simply to say that something cannot come from nothing because it goes against what we know about and understand about physics does not mean that it could not happen. in fact there is much about physics that we do not understand and what we do not know may explain how this could happen. And again how ever it happened may or may not have had a God involved.

    THE DESIGN - Saying that chance is not a valid mechanism to explain the atom or life does not preclude the possibility that it is chance. The possibility of chance being the explanation does have validity if one assumes an infinite amount of time for the occurrence to take place. If life were the jackpot on a slot machine, the slot machine would have hundreds if not thousands of wheels and the same amount of symbols on each wheel. Given any closed time period one could resonably say that the jackpot would never be won. If, however, you had an INFINITE amount of time to spin the wheel one could say that the jackpot is not only possible but almost certain to be won over and over again.
  2. #242  
    Quote Originally Posted by johnbdh
    If, however, you had an INFINITE amount of time to spin the wheel one could say that the jackpot is not only possible but almost certain to be won over and over again.
    Quoting myself, one might use this argument to support the existence of extraterrestrial life. The problem is that the chance of life starting or the jackpot in my previous post being hit is so vastly remote that the chances for it to happen simultaneously or even to overlap, while possible, is highly unlikely.
  3. #243  
    Quote Originally Posted by RicoM
    It's quite obvious that you're not ready to take that step yet....no problem, as I said before, God will not abandon you even though you have abandoned him. But you want scientific proof...and here's an article (a bit long) that should help. But currently, short of an angel appearing before you, I don't think you're ready to accept any scientific logic that says anything except what you want it to say....

    http://www.doesgodexist.org/Phamplets/Mansproof.html
    The article you quoted is full of errors. I don't know whether the author doesn't know better but still writes about these things, or whether he distorts what scientists found out and what atheists think about the universe deliberately - either way wouldn't be fair, that's why I think this article should be debunked. Let's look at the different parts:

    "The Beginning"

    The author admits that there is good scientific evidence showing that there was a "big bang", a time when the whole universe was concentrated in a single point and started to expand (about 13.7 +/- 0.2 billion years ago). So far, so good.

    Then he claims that "the atheist have always maintained that there was no beginning" and that they therefore have to be wrong since science shows that there was a Big Bang. - This is nonsense of course, most present day atheist do believe in a beginning of the universe according to the "Big Bang" scenario. His argument against atheism doesn't make any sense.

    His quote that "the Humanist Manifesto says, "Matter is self-existing and not created," is misleading at best - saying matter is self-existing of course does not mean denying the Big Bang, the author just tries to twist is that way - not convincing at all.


    "The Cause"

    The author writes: "If matter had a beginning and yet was uncaused, one must logically maintain that something would have had to come into existence out of nothing." True, this is difficult to imagine for our limited imagination. But if matter cannot come into existence out of nothing, why should we accept that god - a thinking, planning, omniscient, all-powerful being - could have come into existence out of nothing? If the universe cannot just be there, why is it that before the universe started, god was just there...?


    "The Design"

    Again, the author treats his readers with a (deliberate?) mis-information: "For most of us, simply looking at our newborn child is enough to rule out chance." - as if any scientist or atheist had ever claimed newborns are the product of "chance"?

    Evolution says that the mutations in our genes happen by chance, but the next, just as important step, selection, has nothing to do with chance.
    Last edited by clulup; 12/13/2004 at 02:19 AM.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  4. #244  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    ...
    Evolution says that the mutations in our genes happen by chance, but the next, just as important step, selection, has nothing to do with chance.
    If "Selection" is "the next step" to the "chance" mutation of a gene, isn't the result still ultimately based on chance?

    Or, perhaps the question should be, is there "selection" if there has been no mutation?
  5. #245  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    If "Selection" is "the next step" to the "chance" mutation of a gene, isn't the result still ultimately based on chance?
    No. Imagine you are asked to thow dices and to report ten results. You decide to throw 100 times, then you to select and report only the best results. The result of each seperate try depends on chance, but the overall result will depend on selection.
    Or, perhaps the question should be, is there "selection" if there has been no mutation?
    I don't know why this should be the question... however, without mutation, there is no selection. It would be like selecting among a group of fives: 5, 5, 5, 5, 5.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  6. #246  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    No. Imagine you are asked to thow dices and to report ten results. You decide to throw 100 times, then you to select and report only the best results. The result of each seperate try depends on chance, but the overall result will depend on selection.
    The overall result is the product of selecting from a realm created by chance therefore the result is by chance. If, by chance, the 5 never comes up you do not have it as a choice to select.

    Using your dice example, life would be like having a set of 200 dice with 200 sides or numbers on each one. You would only be allowed to start your selection when 1 and only 1 unique combination was first thrown. Then and only then would you be allowed to start making your selections. So you see the genesis of selection itself is dependent on chance. The odds are astronomically remote within in a given time period for you to have any results at all.

    Your dice example also implies that something or someone outside the realm of the dice is making the selection (a God??). If this is not the case, then the dice must select themselves based on whatever rules govern the selection process, the same rules that dictated the genesis of the selection process in the first place. If we are trying to compare this to the theory of natural selection, then the rules would be extremely complex and based on things like what numbers fell next to each other as well as based on the results of all the roles of the dice that came before. Two 2s followed by a 3, for example, would be selected provided six 100s were thrown together and selected on 10 consecutive roles 50 roles ago. So then the selection process itself, once started, is inextricably based on chance.

    Finally, who made these rules up in the first place.
  7. #247  
    Quote Originally Posted by johnbdh
    The overall result is the product of selecting from a realm created by chance therefore the result is by chance.
    If you would play poker and one of the other players is allowed to take up several hands and select the best of those hands before playing, I am sure you would be the first to say that the "the result is by chance"....
    Using your dice example, life would be like having a set of 200 dice with 200 sides or numbers on each one. You would only be allowed to start your selection when 1 and only 1 unique combination was first thrown. Then and only then would you be allowed to start making your selections. So you see the genesis of selection itself is dependent on chance. The odds are astronomically remote within in a given time period for you to have any results at all.
    A set of 200 dices with 200 sides would result in 200 to the power of 200 possibilities. That would indeed be far to high: far, far higher then the number of atoms in the universe, which seems to be about 10 to the power of 80.

    Nevertheless, it is true that the conditions for life to start on a given planet are quite specific, and the event as such can be expected to be quite rare. Otherwise we may have already seen signs of other life forms e.g. in our galaxy. However, keep in mind that there are about 200 billion suns/solar systems in our galaxy (the Milky Way) alone, and more than 100 billion galaxies, so it is really not unexpected to happen, not only on this planet, but also on others. You can find more about it here.
    Your dice example also implies that something or someone outside the realm of the dice is making the selection (a God??). If this is not the case, then the dice must select themselves based on whatever rules govern the selection process, the same rules that dictated the genesis of the selection process in the first place. If we are trying to compare this to the theory of natural selection, then the rules would be extremely complex and based on things like what numbers fell next to each other as well as based on the results of all the roles of the dice that came before. Two 2s followed by a 3, for example, would be selected provided six 100s were thrown together and selected on 10 consecutive roles 50 roles ago. So then the selection process itself, once started, is inextricably based on chance.
    John, did you ever read someting about the basics of biological evolution? In reality, the whole thing is really terribly simple: The random mutations in the genes cause some degree of variety in the progeny of every species. A small proportion of those mutations will give rise to individuals which have a selective advantage. Of course there is nobody and nothing who has to decide what is an advantage and what isn't. "Advantage" simply means that the carriers of that particular new genetic variation have a greater number of offspring, e.g. because they are resistant to some disease, have a darker fur, grow faster, etc. That offspring will also be a carrier of the new, beneficial trait, and will also have a greater number of offspring. This way, the new trait will spread (as long as the trait confers a selective advantage). Terribly simple, really.

    There are vast numbers of very good scientific sources and explanations on the internet, for instance this one
    Finally, who made these rules up in the first place.
    There is no need to assume anybody "made" any rules, at least there is no sign for anything of that sort. The "laws" of nature are not laws, just the characteristics of the matter, energy, etc. we observe. Though of course everybody is free to claim somebody did make rules, even if there is no evidence for anything of that sort.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  8. #248  
    I feel that some changes are just not for the best and taking Prayer out of the school was one of them IMHO.

    Our kids go to a Christian school but they do not live in a privatized world. Children are our most precious resource and when they become people with no conscious or sense or value for right and wrong, it is a reflection of us all; parents, teachers, society and ultimately; themselves.

    We can be so big on freedom and liberty until tragedy and devestation hits home then we pay the high price for its luxury.

    It is something sobering about coming into the presence of God's Word. Maybe not for everyone, but for somebody and that somebody could be your daughter, son, sister or brother.

    In the African American community there are several issues in many schools here in the DC area ranging from violence to drugs to murder. I would give up my liberties in NY minute if it would help save one child or melt a hard heart.

    "It takes a Village to raise a child." -African Proverbs

    Just my 2 cents.
    Last edited by GeekyMom; 12/13/2004 at 05:12 PM.
    "Everyday is a Gift, A Blessing, An Opportunity!" - GM

    Phone history: Treo 600, Treo 650, Treo Centro, Pixi, Centro again, 800w, Treo 755p, Palm Pre
  9. #249  
    No people are people; religious as well as non-religious. You have to look at the heart of the person and their deeds. I'm just in support of something that might bring about a positive change in the hearts and lives of our young people as I think Prayer in School would help accomplish that for some.
    "Everyday is a Gift, A Blessing, An Opportunity!" - GM

    Phone history: Treo 600, Treo 650, Treo Centro, Pixi, Centro again, 800w, Treo 755p, Palm Pre
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