Atlas of Creation
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27-05-2011, 04:45 PM (This post was last modified: 27-05-2011 04:53 PM by ghostexorcist.)
Atlas of Creation
I searched the forum and didn't see this, so hopefully I'm posting new material.

Has anyone here ever heard of the Islamic Creationist tome known as Atlas of Creation? It was written by the wealthy Turkish businessman and creationist Harun Yahya and distributed to academic societies all over the world for free. It basically presents side-by-side pictures of ancient fossils with modern animals that look almost identical. The whole point of the book is that evolution is an outright lie because the similarities show that animals never changed over time, they were just created. You can see all three volumes of it for free on Yahya's website.

I first learned about this book while viewing some atheist videos on Youtube. A series of videos in particular had the noted Biologist Richard Dawkins refuting the validity of the book by drawing the audience's attention to flaws in its pictorial arguments. One of these pictures was of a Caddis fly encased in amber. The modern comparison was actually a fly fishing lure complete with a hook. A similar mistake used a spider fishing lure, both pictures of which were tracked down to the same internet fishing website by Dawkins. I thought such a mistake was particularly damning to the book, but a Youtube viewer commented on part four that Dawkins took those images out of context. According to them, the pictures were originally meant as a parody. I’ve actually skimmed through the first two volumes of the book online, and I haven’t found the pictures shown on Dawkins’ slide. As I later found out, these pictures were not meant as parodies since they are displayed prominently in the older printed editions. The new printed editions and the online editions have different pictures. This blog explains how the book itself has "evolved."

When I was skimming through the pictorial comparisons, I will admit that many of the pictures are almost identical. But one of the points raised by Dawkins is that, although the creatures look exactly the same, they may not even be taxonomically related. For instance, one picture pointed out by Dawkins was a type of sea flower akin to a sea urchin. The modern equivalent looked identical; the only problem was it was actually some sort of sea worm with a petal-like formation on the top of its head. Another example from the book misrepresented a sea snake for being the modern equivalent of an eel fossil. Besides, a visual comparison is not the same as DNA verification. If you look at the book, you will see that the information under each picture is very short and is devoid of any citation from a respected scientific source.

I honestly had to laugh at several of the fossils in the book, like the one that represented a fully formed “juvenile rabbit” from 30 million years ago. The caption reads: “30-million-year-old fossils that are identical with creatures living today refute the theory of evolution. Fossil discoveries reveal that rabbits have always been rabbits” (Vol. I, “Fossil Specimens Discovered in the USA”). Another was labeled as a fully formed bird from 140 million years ago (Vol. I, "Fossil Specimens Discovered in China"). It is clearly related to birds, but an obvious forebearer. It still has fingers!

Another argument that could be brought up is the fact that a lot of animals just don’t change because they fit into the particular niche of their environment. I am not a biologist, but I know enough about evolution to realize that it is brought on by climate change. If a particular creature develops a mutation that helps them adapt to a change in the environment, then they are more likely to survive and pass on their genes to the next generation. However, if a new mutation is not suited to an environment, they will die out. Those with the most adapted form will stay that way until they are no longer suited for the environment they live in.

This is what Yahya considers to be a "transitional fossil":

"The fossil record contains no examples of species gradually evolving from other, earlier forms. For instance, among millions of fossils, there exists not a single one that possesses the features of a half crocodile/half rabbit or half snake/half rabbit (Vol. I, "Fossil Specimens Discovered in the USA").

It's obvious that he doesn't even have a basic understanding of how biology works.

I have heard from numerous sources (Dawkins, various Amazon customers, other scientists) that the large, 13 lb (5.89 kg!) book is one of the most beautifully produced tomes they have ever seen despite the crappy contents. It is printed on high gloss paper. Dawkins had some people from Oxford University Press price how much it would cost to produce the 10,000 copies that were freely distributed to academic foundations all over the world, and it was guessed around half a million pounds (roughly $813,000). So it costs 50 pounds ($81) to make just one book! Less educated (or informed) people who see this quality book are no doubt fooled by this aspect. Something this nicely produced must be authoritative, right? Wrong. I have a feeling that Yahya did this on purpose because he realized his main argument was crap.

A nice size comparison. You could use this beast as body armor!

[Image: konsey1.jpg]
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27-05-2011, 05:39 PM
 
RE: Atlas of Creation
(27-05-2011 04:45 PM)ghostexorcist Wrote:  . You can see all three volumes of it for free on Yahya's website.

Homo Chickenus?
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27-05-2011, 05:59 PM
 
RE: Atlas of Creation
OK, thanks! You just put me off chicken nuggets for life.
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27-05-2011, 06:38 PM
RE: Atlas of Creation
Yeah, that guys an idiot...

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason and intellect has intended us to forego their use." - Galileo

"Every man is guilty of all the good he did not do." - Voltaire
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28-05-2011, 04:08 AM (This post was last modified: 28-05-2011 05:43 AM by Thammuz.)
RE: Atlas of Creation
Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups, especially if they're well funded. It really makes my blood boil when I see people going to such extensive lengths to spread their message.

Here's another fine example of idiotic books that look nice from the cover, but contain rubbish, misinformation and outright lies:

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"Infinitus est numerus stultorum." (The number of fools is infinite)
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28-05-2011, 05:00 AM
RE: Atlas of Creation
How can people be this stupid and still know how to write? Or even read!?

I want to rip off your superstitions and make passionate sense to you
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28-05-2011, 06:40 AM
 
RE: Atlas of Creation
(28-05-2011 05:00 AM)Norseman Wrote:  How can people be this stupid and still know how to write? Or even read!?

Maybe it's not stupidity to blame but rather bribery... Dodgy
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