Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
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13-05-2015, 08:09 PM
RE: Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
(13-05-2015 05:52 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  This is a paper I wrote debunking the "science creation". It elicits my concerns and why I can't possibly truly be an Atheist.

Sorry for the formatting... It didn't paste correctly from Word.



The Inherent Weaknesses of Evolutionary and Cosmological Science

The most zealously disputed matter encompasses the vital questions of where we came from and how we got here. The disagreement occurs between advocates of deity creation, and secular science explanations. Many evolutionists, cosmologists, and their avid followers claim that the belief in a creator can be discarded based on the overwhelming scientific evidence. Although, there are many problems with the secular argument, including: the legitimacy of mainstream astrophysics, the inability to explain the fundamental building blocks of life, humans’ tendency to change and/or omit scientific theories, the obvious inconsistent and desperate theories in cosmology, and the unexplainable origins of complex biological systems.

First of all, it must be made clear that the field of astrophysics often uses entirely inconceivable methods, yet it is still predominantly found in the major scientific magazines. Scott, who is the author of the Electric Sky: A Challenge to the Myths of Modern Astronomy, explains yet another possibility to the origin of matter. More importantly, the first half of the book attempts to expose the field of astrophysics, which he believes is riddled with conjectures and “intangible…validity.” He regards disciplines such as astrophysics as pseudoscience due to its inability to support claims with empirical data: the conclusions are not validated by a grasp of the physical laws of this universe, but rather with theories that are reliant on the hypothetical mathematical models fabricated by scientists with influential power. Since they cannot test a large portion of their theories empirically, due to observing 14 billion years post-factum, the theories are only standing upon the opinion of other likewise thinking scientists. Such positions are “popularized [in] Scientific American, Discover, and National Geographic” (Scott), by which of course sets the standard for magazines and online articles. Apposing theories, like Scott’s, disagree with existing ones and therefore are not popularized. It would also suggest that data that questions, contradicts, and points to a creator would also be under scrutiny. This means that mainstream science should, by no means, imply there is no evidence indicating the opposite. All in all, it is naïve to definitively believe in publicized scientific views because they are both untestable and verified solely by scientists in the same field, with similar humanistic beliefs.

One of the leading problems with evolution roots from the very start of the formation of life. For life to arise, atoms need to gather and arrange in such a way for amino acids to form, then arrange into proteins, and finally into peptides. After this incredibly complex process, which evolution cannot explain (and is a large topic/branch in itself), an inorganic molecule was believed to evolve. To propose how inorganic (without life) molecules could be converted to organic (life) naturally, in 1953, Stanley Miller conducted an experiment that created organic molecules by using chemical processes. He claimed that he kept the experiment constant at specific variables that were consistent with early earth’s environment. The experiment was successful in the creation of 15-20% of organic molecules, but research now indicates that the variables were not consistent with the updated model of early earth. Overwhelming variables such as irrelevant atmosphere (e.g. hydrogen and nitrogen levels), irrelevant conditions (e.g. cooling, energy from the sun, and photosynthesis), low yield of molecules, wrong forms of amino acids, the formation of proteins, and RNA synthesis reveal the experiment is invalid (Peet). At the time, this was a breakthrough in evolutionary science; however, now it is deemed incredibly flawed. No such experiment with concrete findings has been successful on the hypothesis to this day.
This is just one example of how our growing knowledge of science has and does hurt preexisting evolutionary theories. It also indicates that we might be blind to see the flaws in our theories today. In fact, the Miller-Urey experiment belongs to a large group of discovers that were later disregarded. A few examples of falsified theories include: Earth as a disk, phrenology, Einstein’s static universe theory, Pons’ nuclear fusion, luminiferous aether, phlogiston theory, and Earth being the center of our solar system (Scientist)–the list goes on. What does this say about present day theories? What will we discover in the future that will abolish existing theories today? Has the world done our generation of scientists a favor and freed them from this recurring human flaw? It’s not likely.

With recent headlines in the news reading, “Scientists: Evidence of Big Bang's Beginning” (ScienceDaily) and “Quantum Equations Suggest Big Bang Never Happened” (Lunz), it always keeps us reminded that theories are relative and never provide a resolution. Conflicting propositions on the side of the Big Bang, as well as ones against it, leave us wondering if it’s right, wrong, or if it’s neither of these choices. Obviously the latter option is not reasonable, though it sure seems appetizing given the cluster of conflicting information.

Yet another and also dominant explanation for the existence of the universe is known as the “Multiverse Theory.” It entails that our universe is just one of an infinitely vast selection of universes. Cosmologists reason that there are too many fine-tuned variables found on earth (e.g. the Fibonacci Sequence continuously found in nature), and more importantly in the universe, that would occur solely by chance. They have discovered dozens of physical constants that are essential to our function of life–if they were even off by a bit, the universe would not function correctly and life or matter would not exist (Wolchover). For example, the ratio of electrons to protons (fine tuned by 10^37), ratio of electromagnetic force: gravity (10^40), expansion rate of the universe (10^55), and mass density of the universe (10^59) were unexplainable coincidences (Ross).

In 2012, more wariness emerged when the discovery of the Higgs particle unraveled yet another highly unlikely constant that seemed to fit our universe and ours alone. Out of this, they discovered the “cosmological constant,” which is a number that “has to be enormously fine-tuned [10^120] to prevent the universe from rapidly exploding or collapsing to a point. It has to be fine-tuned in order for life to have a chance (Wolchover).” This number is so unimaginably precise that it leads cosmological scientists to believe this could not possibly happen by mere chance with a singular Big Bang-another case of an abolished theory.
Wolchover, the writer of the Scientific American article, explains their initial reasoning behind the argument by stating:

“Physicists reason that if the universe is unnatural, with extremely unlikely fundamental constants that make life possible, then an enormous number of universes must exist for our improbable case to have been realized. Otherwise, why should we be so lucky? Unnaturalness would give a huge lift to the multiverse hypothesis, which holds that our universe is one bubble in an infinite and inaccessible foam.”

It seems as though this is a desperate attempt to deny their utter uncertainty of how our universe started. In order to justify the Multiverse theory, which originates from the indication of a higher power, they create hypothetical mathematical models to express how it could happen. Evidently, as knowledge of our universe increases, scientists have a harder time conceptualizing their preexisting theories and need to resort to even more abstract leaps, with the transition of the Big Bang to the Multiverse Theory as one example. The dominant Multiverse theory is concerning because it is built upon the logical reasoning of scientists, rather than empirical data, pulled from the universe being perfectly sustainable. This is a direct example of the pseudoscience that Scott and others expose. To hold such a theory requires an equal amount of faith, if not more, as theism because it is also unobservable (by scientific means). Should uneducated people blindly submit this pseudoscience promoted by scientists and popular media? If cosmologists believe this, among all things, how can we trust any alternate theory they propose? It’s doubtful this will be the final consensus, though it truly unmasks their uncertainty and their capability to pull “evidence” from unobservable data.

(Note that this is not a belief held by a small group of scientists; it is accepted by the finest of physicists today. Professors from University of Columbia, University of California, Tufts University, and the University of Cambridge are just a few among the many who do–even the well known, Stephen Hawking.)

If the image of modern day science based on mathematical models and unseeing observation appears broken, there is tangible science out there without the use of imagination. Charles Darwin is the father of and also the most notable figure in evolutionary science today, known for his book, The Origin of Species. Michael Behe, a Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Pennsylvania and well-known author, challenges Darwin’s writing which states, “‘if it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down (Behe).’” Darwin wrote his book in 1859, so he did not know all of these advances in science today (e.g. genes and DNA – fundamental aspects of his theory that would completely change his conclusions). Behe damages the authenticity of his book by directly contradicting his statement above by the concept of “Irreducible Complexity.” He explains that it is when a “single system which is composed of several interacting parts that contribute to the basic function, and where the removal of any one of the parts causes the system to effectively cease functioning." This includes examples such as the bacterial flagellum (a “microscopic motorboat”), the ATP synthase molecule (molecular energy for the cell), and the Cilium (a “molecular vacuum cleaner [in the throat]) (Behe).” As Darwin said, it is significant because evolution can’t explain how these extremely complex tools in biological systems can somehow evolved to function over a course of 14 billion years. No amount of time is sufficient for these systems to evolve, because even if one of these systems starts to add on bits and pieces in order to perform a task (evolutionary process), there are hundreds of other parts with tasks that are essential to sustain its life. This would result in an endless, repeating cycle of death, preventing evolution from even beginning. As of now, evolutionists cannot explain these phenomena. In fact, the essential building blocks that make up these complex systems are still an enigma, with the Miller-Urey experiment as just one example.
To put irreducible complexity into perspective, the picture below depicts the newly discovered interacting pieces of the flagellum, which all need to be present at the same time in order to function.


[Image: flagellum.png]


(This is not the only substantial evidence of a higher power; there are hundreds of well-supported concerns that only several books could do them justice. A notable example is Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design, by Stephen Meyer. Irreducible Complexity was only emphasized to debunk Darwin’s contingent statement.)

It is imperative to realize that we cannot worship both sides: it is either scientific laws behind the existence of our universe (or universes) and life, or a higher power. It is our duty and favor to us as individuals to honestly evaluate the authenticity of both. Secular pseudoscientists are constantly insisting on new theories that we cannot understand yet. It is a faulty pursuit that insists we know the answers for everything, or will know in the soon future. Furthermore, unless you can genuinely believe that these modern scientific assertions are reasonable, it can’t be wise to invest your belief in it. Given all of this, and the equal in integrity evidence that suggests otherwise, the real question should ask who we came from, not how we got here.












Works Cited
Behe, Michael J. "Molecular Machines: Experimental Support for the Design Inference: Behe, Michael." C.S. Lewis Society. Cambridge University, 1994. Web. 23 Apr. 2015.
Behe, Michael. “Michael Behe Hasn't Been Refuted on the Flagellum.” Digital image. Evolution News, 15 Mar. 2011. Web. 23 Apr. 2015.
Davidson, Michael W. "Molecular Expressions Cell Biology: Animal Cell Structure - Cilia and Flagella." Cilia and Flagella. N.p., 13 Dec. 2004. Web. 23 Apr. 2015.
Lunz, Stephen. "Quantum Equations Suggest Big Bang Never Happened." IFLScience. 10 Feb. 2015. Web. 23 Apr. 2015.
Peet, John. "The Miller-Urey Experiment." Truth in Science, n.d. Web. 23 Apr. 2015.
Ross, Hugh. Dr. Bang Refined by Fire. Pasadena: NavPress, 1998. Print.
Scientist. "10 Most Famous Scientific Theories That Were Later Debunked." Famous Scientists. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Apr. 2015.
“Scientists: Evidence of Big Bang's Beginning.” ScienceDaily. N.p., 18 Mar. 2014. Web. 23 Apr. 2015.
Scott, Donald E. The Electric Sky Book. Introduction. Mikamor Publishing. Portland: Mikamor, 2006. Web. 23 Apr. 2015.
Wolchover, Natalie. "New Physics Complications Lend Support to Multiverse Hypothesis." Quanta Magazine, 1 June 2013. Web. 23 Apr. 2015.

So it's nice to see that basically all your god is, is a "gap-filler" as you (as of yet), have no better explanation. That is not, according to Christian Theology, what "faith in God" is. So you're fucked, theologically, and scientifically, as Behe (and his ilk) is one of the world's foremost fools. I will provide all sorts of evidence for that in a bit, when I get back from my tennis match. "Creation" is a meaningless term, (as Dr. Sean Carroll schooled WLC during their debate"). The prior conditions do not allow for use of that concept, (which obviously you are too much of a newbie to even get).
You're about to have your ass handed to you. But, meanwhile, have a nice evening.
Tongue ... Weeping ... Drinking Beverage

This literally made me spit my drink out from laughing so hard. I love this:

"I will provide all sorts of evidence for that in a bit, when I get back from my tennis match. "Creation" is a meaningless term, (as Dr. Sean Carroll schooled WLC during their debate"). The prior conditions do not allow for use of that concept, (which obviously you are too much of a newbie to even get). You're about to have your ass handed to you. But, meanwhile, have a nice evening."
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13-05-2015, 08:19 PM
RE: Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
(13-05-2015 08:09 PM)jennybee Wrote:  
(13-05-2015 05:52 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  So it's nice to see that basically all your god is, is a "gap-filler" as you (as of yet), have no better explanation. That is not, according to Christian Theology, what "faith in God" is. So you're fucked, theologically, and scientifically, as Behe (and his ilk) is one of the world's foremost fools. I will provide all sorts of evidence for that in a bit, when I get back from my tennis match. "Creation" is a meaningless term, (as Dr. Sean Carroll schooled WLC during their debate"). The prior conditions do not allow for use of that concept, (which obviously you are too much of a newbie to even get).
You're about to have your ass handed to you. But, meanwhile, have a nice evening.
Tongue ... Weeping ... Drinking Beverage

This literally made me spit my drink out from laughing so hard. I love this:

"I will provide all sorts of evidence for that in a bit, when I get back from my tennis match. "Creation" is a meaningless term, (as Dr. Sean Carroll schooled WLC during their debate"). The prior conditions do not allow for use of that concept, (which obviously you are too much of a newbie to even get). You're about to have your ass handed to you. But, meanwhile, have a nice evening."

Tongue .. Rolleyes

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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13-05-2015, 08:21 PM
RE: Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
(13-05-2015 07:40 PM)Reltzik Wrote:  
(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  This is a paper I wrote debunking the "science creation". It elicits my concerns and why I can't possibly truly be an Atheist.

Oh, goody. Something new for me to pick to shreds.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Sorry for the formatting... It didn't paste correctly from Word.

Oh... goody. ... badly... formated... ugh. Sad

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  The Inherent Weaknesses of Evolutionary and Cosmological Science

.... uhoh. I wanted something NEW to pick apart. Not another case of "I can't discern between the atheism and evolution". Facepalm This is going to be a drag.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  The most zealously disputed matter encompasses the vital questions of where we came from and how we got here. The disagreement occurs between advocates of deity creation, and secular science explanations. Many evolutionists, cosmologists, and their avid followers claim that the belief in a creator can be discarded based on the overwhelming scientific evidence.

Wait, discarded? Why did we start off holding it in the first place?

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Although, there are many problems with the secular argument, including: the legitimacy of mainstream astrophysics, the inability to explain the fundamental building blocks of life, humans’ tendency to change and/or omit scientific theories, the obvious inconsistent and desperate theories in cosmology, and the unexplainable origins of complex biological systems.

I am sure that an intellectually honest individual such as you will spare a moment to apply this standard equally to theism, to whit (and using Abrahamic religion as an example): The illegitimacy of Genesis astrophysics (stars suspended from a solid firmament), a complete NON-ACKNOWLEDGEMENT of the fundamental building blocks of life, humans' tendency to change, omit, or invent gods from whole cloth, and the obvious inconsistent and desperate theories in theology. ... I'll leave the jury out as to whether "God Did It" counts as an explanation of anything, much less origins of complex biological systems, but it certainly encounters severe difficulties with falsifiability. (If you're not scientifically literate, yes, "can't be falsified" is a bad thing. It means "if this thing is false, there will be no way to detect its falsehood", which is a huge red flag of "we better be damn sure before we buy into it".)

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  First of all, it must be made clear that the field of astrophysics often uses entirely inconceivable methods, yet it is still predominantly found in the major scientific magazines. Scott, who is the author of the Electric Sky: A Challenge to the Myths of Modern Astronomy, explains yet another possibility to the origin of matter.

And why should I care what Scott thinks? Is his worked peer-reviewed? Is he just some high-school drop-out with a word processor?

... also, if the methods are inconceivable, how did people conceive of them? I do not think that word means what you think it means.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  More importantly, the first half of the book attempts to expose the field of astrophysics, which he believes is riddled with conjectures and “intangible…validity.” He regards disciplines such as astrophysics as pseudoscience due to its inability to support claims with empirical data: the conclusions are not validated by a grasp of the physical laws of this universe, but rather with theories that are reliant on the hypothetical mathematical models fabricated by scientists with influential power.

Yes, because scientists wield so much influence in our society. /sarcasm

Some details about WHAT he rejects, and WHY he regards them as invalid, would be nice. As is this is all just vague feces-throwing.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Since they cannot test a large portion of their theories empirically, due to observing 14 billion years post-factum, the theories are only standing upon the opinion of other likewise thinking scientists.

... so.... the whole finite speed of light thing is out the window? Odd. That's something we've actually been able to test on a human scale under controlled conditions.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Such positions are “popularized [in] Scientific American, Discover, and National Geographic” (Scott), by which of course sets the standard for magazines and online articles.

For the record, when you're summarizing a person's work, you don't need to cite them for every quote. It's irritating.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Apposing theories, like Scott’s, disagree with existing ones and therefore are not popularized.

Is that the ONLY thing that distinguishes "apposing" theories from existing ones? If that was the case, how did the Copernican model of heliocentrism ever get publicized over geocentrism?

I'd suggest that whether there is strong or even decent evidence for these as-yet-unspecified opposing theories over the existing consensus might also be a factor. Though of course you have yet to present those opposing theories, or any evidence for them, or any basis for discounting the existing points of consensus. As I'm sure that evidence matters to you, as to anyone who cares about truth, you will no doubt do so eventually, and if these theories are compelling and the evidential weights are addressed, why these theories have not been published will become a pressing question.

... of course, if this is like a lot of Creationist garbage I've seen, assuming itself true by default until disproved and not the least bit thinking that the same standards of proof might apply to itself as anything else, we can probably dispense with that step.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  It would also suggest that data that questions, contradicts, and points to a creator would also be under scrutiny.

If there was such data, and if it pointed to a creator more strongly than to natural origins, yes. What data would that be?

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  This means that mainstream science should, by no means, imply there is no evidence indicating the opposite.

Only if there IS evidence indicating the opposite.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  All in all, it is naïve to definitively believe in publicized scientific views because they are both untestable and verified solely by scientists in the same field, with similar humanistic beliefs.

... okay, wait. TIME OUT.

HUMANISM is a philosophy of ethics and moral values which places emphasis on human happiness, dignity, and freedom. It is often associated with a secular or atheistic world view because it provides a basis for morality other than "GOD SAID SO", and thus is popular with atheists. It is not, however, equivalent in any way to atheism. There are theistic humanists, including Christian humanists who say that compassion towards human happiness, dignity, and freedom is mandated by the teachings of Jesus. Furthermore, humanism is a VALUE system, not a BELIEF system. It's about what people care about and prioritize, not about what they think is true or false. It does favor rationalism over faith as a path to knowledge... but since you're trying for an argument based on evidence here, that applies to you too.

Some astrophysicists are humanists. Some are not. Frankly, humanism has very little to say, one way or the other, about astrophysics, any more than fiscal conservatism has anything to say about radiocarbon dating. Most astrophysicists are not theists (I wouldn't care to guess how many are deists), but there are religious astrophysicists who see the subject of their study as the work of a creator god and yet who agree, BASED ON EVIDENCE, with all the same conclusions.

So right now you're conflating humanism with anti-creationism, when they have nothing to do with each other. No. Just... no. If you don't even know what the words mean, don't try to make zinging points with them. They fall flat and make you look like a fool.

Okay, time-in, because we're getting back to your point... er... non-point. Because you didn't actually make a point.

You seem to have forgotten something. You started by making vague unspecific claims about lacks of evidence and flawed methodology. I accepted this vagueness at first as an introductory teaser, as something you'd get around to clearing up eventually after our appetites were whetted. Instead, you just skipped from there straight to the conclusion that astrophysics and astrophysicists cannot be trusted. In between, you identified NOT A SINGLE flawed methodology, not a single questionable technique, not one solitary item of actual scientific evidence for an alternative hypothesis, and neither a dominant hypothesis you wish to challenge NOR a specific hypothesis with which to challenge it!

But okay, I'll give you a win. I will now agree that every single specific point and claim you made, at least up to here. (The sum total count of those is nil.)

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  One of the leading problems with evolution roots from the very start of the formation of life. For life to arise, atoms need to gather and arrange in such a way for amino acids to form, then arrange into proteins, and finally into peptides. After this incredibly complex process, which evolution cannot explain (and is a large topic/branch in itself), an inorganic molecule was believed to evolve.

... THIS again.

Okay. BASIC DEFINITION TIME.

Evolution means CHANGE OVER TIME. That's IT. It can be applied to species, fashion, stellar chemistry, or even military training (which often refer to steps in the training process as evolutions).

Biological evolution is a specific type of evolution. It refers to the phenomenon of species changing form and even splitting into new species. That this happens is observed fact. The Theory of Evolution -- which is the dominant consensus in all biological fields, is quite falsifiable, and yet has been repeatedly confirmed by a stupendous bulk of evidence to date -- attributes this to the trifecta of reproduction, variation, and selection, and posits common descent of all life on earth from common ancestry. It says NOTHING about the original origins of life... just how species got to be the way they are now FROM those origins. To attempt to disprove the theory of evolution by saying it can't account for the origins of life is akin to attempting to disprove geography by saying it can't account for where the earth came from.

What you're attempting to address is a completely different field called abiogenesis. This field is indeed very poorly defined, with many theories about what could have happened, but little evidence (and few strong assertions) about what DID happen. It's a field of science that's still asking most of its basic questions. It'd be damned hard to disprove it, because it has yet to put forward results to disprove.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  To propose how inorganic (without life) molecules could be converted to organic (life) naturally, in 1953, Stanley Miller conducted an experiment that created organic molecules by using chemical processes.

... dammit, are we ever going to get OUT of Basic Definition Time? No? No? Dammit.

Okay. In Chemistry, the term ORGANIC does not refer to things that are alive or not. It refers to molecules which have carbon atoms. Diamonds are organic. Graphite is organic. Carbon-monoxide is organic. And so's DNA.

The experiment was to see if certain organic molecules (meaning molecules with carbon), thought significant for abiogenesis, could have been produced by conditions which paleogeologists thought prevalent at the time life arose.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  He claimed that he kept the experiment constant at specific variables that were consistent with early earth’s environment. The experiment was successful in the creation of 15-20% of organic molecules, but research now indicates that the variables were not consistent with the updated model of early earth. Overwhelming variables such as irrelevant atmosphere (e.g. hydrogen and nitrogen levels), irrelevant conditions (e.g. cooling, energy from the sun, and photosynthesis), low yield of molecules, wrong forms of amino acids, the formation of proteins, and RNA synthesis reveal the experiment is invalid (Peet). At the time, this was a breakthrough in evolutionary science; however, now it is deemed incredibly flawed. No such experiment with concrete findings has been successful on the hypothesis to this day.

Yes, the paleogeologists changed their minds in light of new evidence. This doesn't invalidate Miller's experiment, but it does severely damage its relevance vis-a-vis conditions as they actually existed on Earth billions of years ago. It's like Air Force Command identifying the wrong building for a fighter pilot to bomb, and the pilot bombing it exactly. Don't blame the pilot or the bombing mechanism. That means it's time to repeat those experiments, only this time updated to the conditions as they are now regarded -- in essence, it's time to bomb the right building. Not to declare the entire process a failure. In any event, this is again about abiogenesis, a field which has produced few if any solid conclusions to be undermined by questionable methodology.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  This is just one example of how our growing knowledge of science has and does hurt preexisting evolutionary theories.

Not evolution.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  It also indicates that we might be blind to see the flaws in our theories today. In fact, the Miller-Urey experiment belongs to a large group of discovers that were later disregarded. A few examples of falsified theories include: Earth as a disk, phrenology, Einstein’s static universe theory, Pons’ nuclear fusion, luminiferous aether, phlogiston theory, and Earth being the center of our solar system (Scientist)–the list goes on.

Most of those, it should be noted, weren't scientific theories in the sense that they were unifying explanations strongly supported by evidence. Nor were they EVER valid discoveries. They were simply the dominant consensus.

Miller-Urey DID provide valuable discoveries about what chemicals could form under what conditions, and those discoveries have NOT been and SHOULD not be disregarded. The only change is how relevant they are to conditions on Earth billions of years ago.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  What does this say about present day theories? What will we discover in the future that will abolish existing theories today? Has the world done our generation of scientists a favor and freed them from this recurring human flaw? It’s not likely.

One of the fundamental, underlying rules of science is that we apportion belief in proportion to evidence, and constantly consider and reconsider our existing notions in light of that evidence as it is added to or clarified. This central, self-correcting mechanism is WHY we know that the Earth isn't flat and that the solar system does not revolve around it, and it is the very mechanism that WILL allow future evidence to abolish any currently existing consensus. It should be noted that faith, religion, etc, LACKS these mechanisms, and this is why, for example, the Church imprisoned Galileo for daring to argue against geocentrism. How the hell is this a case against science?

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  With recent headlines in the news reading, “Scientists: Evidence of Big Bang's Beginning” (ScienceDaily) and “Quantum Equations Suggest Big Bang Never Happened” (Lunz), it always keeps us reminded that theories are relative and never provide a resolution.

Big Bang cosmology is indeed an evolving (note the CORRECT use of the word) field that is still in flux as evidence comes in and our understanding of the physics in play under those extreme conditions develops. This is part of the process, not a cause to reject the process. Doing so is like dismaying that a 2-month-old is unable to walk and smashing its brains out from frustration.

I should further note that titles of popular science publications can be pretty deceptive. Some details from the articles would be nice.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Conflicting propositions on the side of the Big Bang, as well as ones against it, leave us wondering if it’s right, wrong, or if it’s neither of these choices. Obviously the latter option is not reasonable, though it sure seems appetizing given the cluster of conflicting information.

Actually "neither" is a reasonable choice if the truth is something like the Big Bang but significantly different.

Now here's the basic definitions and case for Big Bang cosmology, which you didn't make.

Red-shift evidence in distant galaxies, discovered by Hubble (not the telescope, but the astronomer the telescope was named for) almost a century ago, indicates that they are all moving away from us, and the further away from us they are the faster away they are moving. (Red shift is a phenomonen of light, observable even here on Earth, that alters the frequency of light as its origin moves quickly towards or away from the observer. Things coming towards us appear bluer, things moving away from us redder. It's very much like the Doppler Effect, where a train horn sounds higher-pitched as it is coming towards us and lower-pitched as it is moving away.) This had the appearance of scattering following an explosion, and further suggested that all these galaxies were once tightly clustered together (since they were moving apart. The resulting hypothesis, that the universe has expanded from a more compact state, resulted in several predictions about what would be found as telescopes improved.... and those predictions came true.

Blame popular science publications and religious critics for the inelegant name of "Big Bang".

Many models of how compact the universe was at the start of this process, and other related claims about what (if anything) preceded it, have been advanced. So far none have really garnered scientific consensus. Again, if you want to disprove a scientific consensus, you might want to focus on something that HAS scientific consensus.

... also, not a damn thing here has anything to do with atheism or the existence of a god. There are deists and even Christians who figure that a god is the source of the Big Bang and they're just marvelling in His Work. And there are plenty of atheists who don't believe it happened. You're shooting at the wrong target.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Yet another and also dominant explanation for the existence of the universe is known as the “Multiverse Theory.” It entails that our universe is just one of an infinitely vast selection of universes.

Common, yes. Dominant, no. Unless we're talking in the probabilistic sense favored by quantum mechanics, definitely no. And I would rank quantum mechanics as one of the top things that EVERYONE misunderstands about science.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Cosmologists reason that there are too many fine-tuned variables found on earth (e.g. the Fibonacci Sequence continuously found in nature), and more importantly in the universe, that would occur solely by chance.

Okay, speaking as a mathematician, PLEASE DEFINE WHAT YOU MEAN BY CHANCE. If you want to use it as statistically significant evidence, which you appear to be doing here, you would be referring to a divergence from a baseline probability distribution. In which case, I'd agree. The Fibonacci sequences found in nature point strongly to a common fractal approach in how things are generated, essentially the same pattern being repeated on larger and larger scales. But what does this signify? It could EASILY be the result of some natural process that was weighted in its products towards this pattern. "God" being the cause of it is no way indicated or counterindicated. This is neither evidence for nor against.

Also, I have yet to encounter a "finely-tuned" argument that was remotely scientific. This one isn't either, because it doesn't fulfill standards of falsification and does not in any way differentiate itself from the alternative of natural selection.

... also-also, FOR FUCK'S SAKE! Life can exist on a severe film only a few miles wide and mostly condensed on the surface of only one planet that we've identified, between the bulk of the planet's matter in which it does not exist, and a vacuum where it cannot thrive, bombarded by all manners of hostile radiation and other unhappy phenomena... and you call THIS finely-tuned? Here, have some Darkmatter.





(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  They have discovered dozens of physical constants that are essential to our function of life–if they were even off by a bit, the universe would not function correctly and life or matter would not exist (Wolchover). For example, the ratio of electrons to protons (fine tuned by 10^37), ratio of electromagnetic force: gravity (10^40), expansion rate of the universe (10^55), and mass density of the universe (10^59) were unexplainable coincidences (Ross).

First of all, gravity could change quite a bit and not affect life processes. Claiming otherwise would is dishonest. So too could the expansion rate and mass density of the universe. (All three are linked, btw, so citing them as independent factors is just posturing.)

But more significantly, we can't ascribe any probability to these values being anything other than what they are... nor can we evaluate how likely it would be for some alternative form of life to arise under such modified circumstances (and then declare that ITS universe was finely tuned). There is nothing falsifiable about this claim in the slightest. It cites science, but it is not science and it is not evidence. It's taking a bunch of true facts and drawing absurd conclusions that those facts in no way support.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  In 2012, more wariness emerged when the discovery of the Higgs particle unraveled yet another highly unlikely constant that seemed to fit our universe and ours alone.

So.... something seemed to be true all around, and we found out it was true all around, therefore God? I was with you up until "God". Still nothing that satisfies falsification or accounts for an alternative of selection.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Out of this, they discovered the “cosmological constant,” which is a number that “has to be enormously fine-tuned [10^120] to prevent the universe from rapidly exploding or collapsing to a point.

Actually, the expansion of space means that there are portions of the universe headed away from us at a relative velocity faster than the speed of light. I'd call that "rapidly exploding".

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  It has to be fine-tuned in order for life to have a chance (Wolchover).” This number is so unimaginably precise that it leads cosmological scientists to believe this could not possibly happen by mere chance with a singular Big Bang-another case of an abolished theory.
Wolchover, the writer of the Scientific American article, explains their initial reasoning behind the argument by stating:

“Physicists reason that if the universe is unnatural, with extremely unlikely fundamental constants that make life possible, then an enormous number of universes must exist for our improbable case to have been realized. Otherwise, why should we be so lucky? Unnaturalness would give a huge lift to the multiverse hypothesis, which holds that our universe is one bubble in an infinite and inaccessible foam.”

Okay. Here's the challenge. QUANTIFY the probability of that constant having turned out as it did. Demonstrate, scientifically, that the probability of it having done so is less than 90%. Do this without pulling numbers out of your ass. I won't touch them if they've been pulled out of your ass.

Show your work.

... no? Didn't think so. This can't actually be done. There exists no methodology for doing it.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  It seems as though this is a desperate attempt to deny their utter uncertainty of how our universe started.

... wait, scientists deny this? There's scientists out there who say, "Yes, we're very certain about how the universe began, right down to all the physical equations about the singularity at the origin of the Big Bang?"

... WHO, dammit? So far you're arguing against the generic "Them" of conspiracy theories and unattributed conventional wisdom.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  In order to justify the Multiverse theory, which originates from the indication of a higher power,

.... indication of a higher power? Look, I told you once already! I'm not touching anything that you just pulled out of your ass!

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  they create hypothetical mathematical models to express how it could happen. Evidently, as knowledge of our universe increases, scientists have a harder time conceptualizing their preexisting theories and need to resort to even more abstract leaps, with the transition of the Big Bang to the Multiverse Theory as one example.

... wait, they've transitioned from Big Bang to Multiverse? As in, replaced one with the other? Big Bang's been supplanted? SINCE WHEN?

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  The dominant Multiverse theory is concerning because it is built upon the logical reasoning of scientists, rather than empirical data, pulled from the universe being perfectly sustainable. This is a direct example of the pseudoscience that Scott and others expose.

From Wikipedia's article on the Multiverse:

Quote:The multiverse hypothesis is a source of debate within the physics community. Physicists disagree about whether the multiverse exists, and whether the multiverse is a proper subject of scientific inquiry. Supporters of one of the multiverse hypotheses include Stephen Hawking, Brian Greene, Max Tegmark, Alan Guth, Andrei Linde, Michio Kaku, David Deutsch, Leonard Susskind, Raj Pathria, Alexander Vilenkin, Laura Mersini-Houghton, Neil deGrasse Tyson and Sean Carroll. In contrast, those who are not proponents of the multiverse include: Nobel laureate Steven Weinberg, Nobel laureate David Gross, Paul Steinhardt, Neil Turok, Viatcheslav Mukhanov, George Ellis, Jim Baggott, and Paul Davies. Some argue that the multiverse question is philosophical rather than scientific, that the multiverse cannot be a scientific question because it lacks falsifiability, or even that the multiverse hypothesis is harmful or pseudoscientific.

So basically, the scientific community has already flagged these problems, and has the same concerns about Multiverse Theory as Scott "exposed" (after they did). Oddly enough, your proposed conspiracy to suppress countervailing opinions hasn't succeeded in preventing the dissenters from publishing.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  To hold such a theory requires an equal amount of faith, if not more, as theism because it is also unobservable (by scientific means). Should uneducated people blindly submit this pseudoscience promoted by scientists and popular media? If cosmologists believe this, among all things, how can we trust any alternate theory they propose? It’s doubtful this will be the final consensus, though it truly unmasks their uncertainty and their capability to pull “evidence” from unobservable data.

Equal amount of faith? HARDLY. At least it hasn't made a bewildering number of predictions that have since fallen flat. But yeah, people should not blindly buy into multiverse theory. ... or any other theory. Test, verify, or at least review how other people did this if you feel remotely interested in the subject. I invite you to test the theory of gravity before believing it! Please, jump off a building! FOR SCIENCE!

But okay, you got specific about one thing you identify as pseudoscience... the multiverse. And I agree with you. And if it in any way represented the scientific consensus (it doesn't) or if it in any way had anything to do with whether a god exists (it doesn't), then maybe you'd have a point (you don't).

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  (Note that this is not a belief held by a small group of scientists; it is accepted by the finest of physicists today. Professors from University of Columbia, University of California, Tufts University, and the University of Cambridge are just a few among the many who do–even the well known, Stephen Hawking.)

And discounted by a great many as well. As noted above. NOT a consensus.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  If the image of modern day science based on mathematical models and unseeing observation appears broken, there is tangible science out there without the use of imagination. Charles Darwin is the father of and also the most notable figure in evolutionary science today, known for his book, The Origin of Species. Michael Behe, a Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Pennsylvania and well-known author, challenges Darwin’s writing which states, “‘if it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down (Behe).’”
Behe. That's the same guy who, in the Dover trial, while under oath, had to admit that the Intelligent Design theory he bought into was no more a scientific theory than astrology. And also the guy who pinned most of his hopes on a bacterial flagellum that he asserted couldn't function in a more primitive form... only to be confronted with the fact that a more primitive form WAS of use as a sort of cellular hypodermic needle, even if it was worthless as a flagellum.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Darwin wrote his book in 1859, so he did not know all of these advances in science today (e.g. genes and DNA – fundamental aspects of his theory that would completely change his conclusions).

They didn't change his conclusions at all. They simply showed us a mechanism that underlied the theory without invalidating it in the slightest. It would be a bit like having a conclusion that pressing on the gas pedal caused a car to move, and then discovering the engine under the hood, and saying you completely changed your conclusion about the car moving as a consequence of gas pedal action because of it.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Behe damages the authenticity of his book by directly contradicting his statement above by the concept of “Irreducible Complexity.”

Called it. I strongly suggest you look into how Behe was destroyed under oath during the Dover Trial.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  He explains that it is when a “single system which is composed of several interacting parts that contribute to the basic function, and where the removal of any one of the parts causes the system to effectively cease functioning." This includes examples such as the bacterial flagellum (a “microscopic motorboat”), the ATP synthase molecule (molecular energy for the cell), and the Cilium (a “molecular vacuum cleaner [in the throat]) (Behe).”

Again, called it. Also, this doesn't address an evolutionary path in which an element is eliminated. Evolution isn't ALWAYS from more simple to more complex. Sometimes it gets rid of things that are no longer useful... but which were necessary to arrive at that point in an evolutionary sense. The classic example is that of a pile of sand holding all the stones of an arch up as the pieces of the arch are assembled, and then the pile of sand is removed.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  As Darwin said, it is significant because evolution can’t explain how these extremely complex tools in biological systems can somehow evolved to function over a course of 14 billion years. No amount of time is sufficient for these systems to evolve, because even if one of these systems starts to add on bits and pieces in order to perform a task (evolutionary process), there are hundreds of other parts with tasks that are essential to sustain its life. This would result in an endless, repeating cycle of death, preventing evolution from even beginning. As of now, evolutionists cannot explain these phenomena.

Can, and have. During the Dover trial, it was literally impossible to see Behe behind the stack of publications doing exactly this, which the cross-examining attorney piled on the witness stand. Behe solidly maintained that this could not be done, whilst being completely unfamiliar with the science that had done exactly that. Unfortunately, stubborn ignorance isn't proof.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  In fact, the essential building blocks that make up these complex systems are still an enigma, with the Miller-Urey experiment as just one example.
To put irreducible complexity into perspective, the picture below depicts the newly discovered interacting pieces of the flagellum, which all need to be present at the same time in order to function.


[Image: flagellum.png]

Asked and answered.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  (This is not the only substantial evidence of a higher power; there are hundreds of well-supported concerns that only several books could do them justice. A notable example is Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design, by Stephen Meyer. Irreducible Complexity was only emphasized to debunk Darwin’s contingent statement.)

WHAT. THE. FUCK.

Okay. Okay. I see what you did there.

Even if you had debunked evolutionary origin -- which you haven't... THAT DOESN'T PROVE A GOD. You have to make your case, not just poke holes in your opponent's case. If that was all it took, I could point out that an omnipotent god could not simultaneously create an unliftable rock and then lift it, and boom, therefore evolutionary origin. THAT'S NOT HOW LOGIC WORKS.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  It is imperative to realize that we cannot worship both sides: it is either scientific laws behind the existence of our universe (or universes) and life, or a higher power.

.... worship?

.... what the hell do you mean by WORSHIP. I think this is another word that does not mean what you think it means.

Also, there's a few more options than your false dillema implies.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  It is our duty and favor to us as individuals to honestly evaluate the authenticity of both.

And yet you have not evaluated the authenticity of scientific theories accurately, or the authenticity of a higher power AT ALL.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Secular pseudoscientists are constantly insisting on new theories that we cannot understand yet. It is a faulty pursuit that insists we know the answers for everything, or will know in the soon future.

... wait, which scientist says this again? I can't think of a one. Give me a name. Then give me a bunch more, because a lone scientist talking shit doesn't actually represent the scientific community.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Furthermore, unless you can genuinely believe that these modern scientific assertions are reasonable, it can’t be wise to invest your belief in it.

A true statement! How about we look at the evidence rather than just sling mud and rhetoric! ... oh, wait, that doesn't help you, so we shouldn't do that.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  Given all of this, and the equal in integrity evidence that suggests otherwise, the real question should ask who we came from, not how we got here.

Equal integrity? On one side: Bunch of evidence which you refuse to present, maliciously misrepresent and/or strawman, attempt and fail to poke holes in, and ultimately don't undermine at all. On the other side... NADA! In all your attempts to discount science, you have presented NOT A SHRED of evidence for theism. You simply, and blindly, and falsely, assert that if science is presently wrong, the only alternative is a creator god! And then you demand to reframe the question so that it is loaded in favor of a personal deity creator... on no evidence presented whatsoever.

What a fraud.

Rel - You take it to another level - Impressed Bowing

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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13-05-2015, 08:35 PM
RE: Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
LaughatLaughatLaughat

That is hilarious.

[Image: irreducible+stupidity.jpg]

"If we are honest—and scientists have to be—we must admit that religion is a jumble of false assertions, with no basis in reality.
The very idea of God is a product of the human imagination."
- Paul Dirac
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13-05-2015, 08:52 PM (This post was last modified: 14-05-2015 02:41 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
(13-05-2015 06:58 PM)TheMrBillShow Wrote:  Too lazy to find the easily located refutations to all of the arguments you've posited?

Willful ignorance.

No desire to look for anything.
It's a Freshman (or high-school) paper in Apologetics from Biola or Liberty U, or some idiot Bible College. Weeping
It was an assignment. Thumbsup The writing deserves a "D" grade. It's not even grammar checked.
He hasn't debunked anything. There is no theory in all of science that proposes anything about "creation". We know "how we got here". Humans evolved. It's proven by DNA. Order (as discussed in Chaos Theory .. see Wiki) arises spontaneously in this universe. Why this universe has all the properties it has is not known at this point.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  The most zealously disputed matter encompasses the vital questions of where we came from and how we got here. The disagreement occurs between advocates of deity creation, and secular science explanations. Many evolutionists, cosmologists, and their avid followers claim that the belief in a creator can be discarded based on the overwhelming scientific evidence. Although, there are many problems with the secular argument, including: the legitimacy of mainstream astrophysics, the inability to explain the fundamental building blocks of life, humans’ tendency to change and/or omit scientific theories, the obvious inconsistent and desperate theories in cosmology, and the unexplainable origins of complex biological systems.

He can't name two "evolutionists" or ''cosmologists" who say what he claims. There are no "problems" with "the fundamental building blocks of life". He can't say what that even means, or what they are. Science is ALL ABOUT change. It's a method. Change is what it's supposed to do. That's not a weakness, it's a strength.

(13-05-2015 03:29 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  First of all, it must be made clear that the field of astrophysics often uses entirely inconceivable methods, yet it is still predominantly found in the major scientific magazines.

100 % false. The methods may not be understandable to an ignorant such as this writer, but it's methods, (which he doesn't even attempt to name or discredit) are well known, and used the world over. IF there were something wrong with one of them, any one scientist, (who are at each others throats in reality and very very competitive) would have been successful in shooting them down. Astrophysics is found at MAJOR UNIVERSITIES, and the practitioners write articles that sometimes get picked up by magazines. Astrophyics is not "found in magazines". The fact this idiot would say something THAT stupid makes me wonder :

a. how old is he ? Like 12 ?
b. apparently from all the very very poor grammar and English usage in this "paper", either this person is very very young (and thus uneducated), or English is not his first language.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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13-05-2015, 10:12 PM
RE: Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
Let me guess, you can't be an atheist because you hate the truth. Its much easier on the brain when you indulge in fantasy.

You bring up science that you don't understand.
It amazes me that any theist is even able to obtain a science degree.

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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13-05-2015, 10:50 PM
RE: Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
Classic hit and run.

I love when a new theist comes in, plays an out-of-date argument right away and we're like "Atheists assemble!" and then destroy these ignoramuses.

Wasn't it Einstein who defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result? I think it's proof these theists are borderline insane as a group. They know the argument is weak and precedently refuted yet they keep bringing it up hoping to hit an uninitiated bunch of atheists.

Silly theists, shoo.

Check out my now-defunct atheism blog. It's just a blog, no ads, no revenue, no gods.
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Atheism promotes critical thinking; theism promotes hypocritical thinking. -- Me
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13-05-2015, 11:05 PM
RE: Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
You know, I wouldn't mind the nutjob-level-theist echo chamber.

.... if only they'd completely sound-proof it so we wouldn't have to hear the nonsense going on in there.

.... oh, and if they wouldn't lock their kids in there too.

.... and if they wouldn't vote based on what they hear in there.

.... okay, I won't mind their echo chamber once we've nuked it from orbit. (It's the only way to be sure.)

Wait. Crap. KIDS. Okay, the logistics here are gonna get complicated.
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13-05-2015, 11:27 PM
RE: Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
(13-05-2015 05:04 PM)thequestioner Wrote:  So, you're an Atheist, yet you don't think the universe was created by scientific means? I understand believing this apposed to a deity, but I can't understand how one can disregard both. Explain your views - how did the universe, this world, life, and us come to existence without science or a higher power?

Word created imply creator doesn't it? If so then I don't think the universe was created. As for explaining views - Lawrence Krauss and his "A Universe from Nothing" will suffice in this regard, though to someone like you what's written in this book probably will be unacceptable.

And you're missing something - I'm not atheist cause I think BB is good theory, I am atheist cause nothing serious points to existence of god. Bible and wishing that he exists aren't proofs.

The first revolt is against the supreme tyranny of theology, of the phantom of God. As long as we have a master in heaven, we will be slaves on earth.

Mikhail Bakunin.
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13-05-2015, 11:38 PM
RE: Why I Can't Be An Atheist - Scientific Approach
Science is hard, there's no doubt about it. Why creationists think that origin of life would fit some simple story-book pattern is beyond me.

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If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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