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What Has Understanding Evolution...

by Whalstib
Tags: evolution
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Fra
#73
Mar15-11, 04:33 AM
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Quote Quote by Ken Natton View Post
Fra, I don’t agree with you that ‘what has the study of evolution done for mankind’ is a good question, however you may choose to rephrase it. As I have said previously, if you take it absolutely at face value it seems a hopelessly naïve question to me. Even if you allow only purely utilitarian answers to the question, still they are so broad and so varied as to be glaringly obvious. It is like asking, ‘what has the appearance of life on earth done for mankind?’ I would warrant that much serious biological research is underpinned by a knowledge and understanding of evolution and of phylogeny that the biologists involved are not even terribly conscious of applying, so basic and fundamental is that knowledge to the very idea of the research.

So do I think that Warren is really that naïve? No, of course he isn’t Warren knows exactly what he is doing. What he is doing is in no way original. Not one thing he has said isn’t wearingly familiar and very tedious. And you are falling right into his trap.
I admit that I don't understand what you suggest here.

It's not necessarily a naive question. If you think it's a SIMPLE question with and obvious answer, ok they why not just answer to it. I tried to answer it. I'm not sure if there are any stupid question, at least one can always try to understand wht it's raised. MAybe you suggest that this question is raised as rhetoric? If so I don't think responding with rhetoric helps. I just tried to give a bried sincere answer of how I see it.

I'm not playing any games, I have no reason to.
I'm just trying to do my part to contribute to getting the discussion on track.

/Fredrik
Fra
#74
Mar15-11, 04:38 AM
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Quote Quote by Ken Natton View Post
Not one thing he has said isn’t wearingly familiar and very tedious. And you are falling right into his trap.
I guess it depends on perspective. It's not familiar to me.

Like I said in another post, this difficulty of discussing scientific method and evolutionary models soundly without necessarily confusing it with religion is something that never ever struck ME. I know faintly of this so called discussions in religious circuits but I don't see muhc of that wher I am (Sweden). And to be honest I ignored allthat stuff.

I assumed and treated the OT as sincere.

/Fredrik
Ken Natton
#75
Mar15-11, 04:47 AM
P: 272
Believe me Fredrik, never for one moment was I suggesting that you were playing any games. And genuinely, I hope you manage to retain your enjoyment of the exchange and avoid the fall into the level of cynicism of which I am perhaps guilty. But I have to suspect that Warren and his ilk will wear you down in the end. Already, can you possibly still have any expectation of persuading him of anything?
Pythagorean
#76
Mar15-11, 05:04 AM
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Here's a more interesting thread:

http://www.physicsforums.com/showthr...88#post3188988
mishrashubham
#77
Mar15-11, 05:13 AM
P: 605
Quote Quote by Whalstib View Post

How does one replace a multi generational tradition with a theory that can't be fully explained and in fact demands you shift away from your own paradigm and accept it first before you can begin to comprehend?

You invoke Dawkins again and he's stated he justified his atheism with evolution. That is quite extreme to some ears. How can one win hearts and minds with such absolutes at the meet and greet?

G'nite,

W
There is a basic assumption over here; that one has to accept either evolution or religion. But I say why not both?

In the history of science, we have always had people who thought about the world, observed it, formed equations and sort and put forward theories. Over the course of time, many have been rejected, many accepted and many are still undergoing experimentation. These theories are all honest attempts at understanding the world. And so is religion; honest and innocent attempts to explain everything. And just as a theory is modified to suit current experimental observations, we can simply modify our religious views.
I for one live in India and am a Hindu by religion; and we are supposed to have 330 million gods. This fact really amused one person who has even posted about it.
Quote Quote by jackson6612 View Post
Some basic information:

Hindus have one God. They also have 330 million Gods. Male Gods, Female Gods, Family Gods, Household Gods, Personal God, Village God, Fertility God, Forest God, Sun God, Moon God and what not. You name it, there is a God for it. For Hindus, everything is divine and there is nothing that can be ignored.
And yet am I supposed to believe that there is a small man sitting inside everything I see? According to the Indian Scriptures, The universe was made by Brahma, one of the principal gods. Then should I believe than an old man with 4 heads and 4 hands sitting on a lotus flower created everything? NO! Because these are supposed to have metaphorical meaning and not literal ones. The lotus, the four hands and heads; they are there to symbolize things. The lotus for example represents that one can attain peace and happiness even when one is surrounded by dirty elements just as a lotus flower emerges from the muddy waters.

Many ancient scientists and philosophers like Aristotle, Plato etc have been wrong about things. Even Darwin himself believed in Pangenesis. So do we just condemn them? No, we still respect them because of the contributions that they have made.

Now you ask what good is religion and tradition in our lives? Just like Fra said, having faith in something gives one the mental strength to achieve things.

One more interesting thing is the way people are treated for diseases in rural areas in India. When people get sick they go to the local shaman who with his strange chants and actions claims to remove the spirits from the body and cure the disease. And surprisingly, many people are cured! How is that possible? It is the faith that the person has in the shaman and his abilities, the thought that he will soon become well that cures him. And this is exactly what modern science terms as "The Placebo Effect".

So my point is, evolution and religious tradition do not always need to contradict each other; they can simultaneously exist and it the people themselves who have to realise this fact.

Quote Quote by Ken Natton View Post
I would warrant that much serious biological research is underpinned by a knowledge and understanding of evolution and of phylogeny that the biologists involved are not even terribly conscious of applying, so basic and fundamental is that knowledge to the very idea of the research.
I totally agree with that Ken.

Quote Quote by Ken Natton View Post
So do I think that Warren is really that naïve? No, of course he isn’t Warren knows exactly what he is doing. What he is doing is in no way original. Not one thing he has said isn’t wearingly familiar and very tedious. And you are falling right into his trap.
After a lot of effort , Warren is just beginning to seriously ask questions so let us not fire him up again.
mishrashubham
#78
Mar15-11, 05:15 AM
P: 605
Quote Quote by Pythagorean View Post
Haha...Nice one Pythagorean...
Whalstib
#79
Mar15-11, 10:29 AM
P: 119
Quote Quote by Ken Natton View Post
Believe me Fredrik, never for one moment was I suggesting that you were playing any games. And genuinely, I hope you manage to retain your enjoyment of the exchange and avoid the fall into the level of cynicism of which I am perhaps guilty. But I have to suspect that Warren and his ilk will wear you down in the end. Already, can you possibly still have any expectation of persuading him of anything?
On the contrary Ken

Fra has contributed greatly to my understanding. The texts I was referring to to learn about evolution were biology texts and assumed I had more back ground than I do. Fra has given me a fresh perspective from which to understand this.

I think my problem has been not appreciating that evolution is a very simple idea at it's most basic and taken for granted. Before Newton gravity was a mystery but now grade school children can understand a good deal of it and figure it 2nd nature. The idea we see change doesn't seem earth shaking in any way shape or form and I wasn't seeing the more practical applications.
I'm not sure what you mean by my ilk so if you could elaborate I could confirm or deny and there would be no mystery.

Thanks,

W
Whalstib
#80
Mar15-11, 10:34 AM
P: 119
Quote Quote by mishrashubham View Post
After a lot of effort , Warren is just beginning to seriously ask questions so let us not fire him up again.
You always have the best short answers!

Once again I don't understand the compulsion to continue if one feels I am dealing dishonestly. I have surmised this from several posters and exercised the ignore option.

W
Whalstib
#81
Mar15-11, 11:17 AM
P: 119
Quote Quote by Fra View Post
I don't want to interfere with the sidetrack but how about if we just for the sake of reflection turn the question of the OP around.
/Fredrik
Excellent idea!

How about this. What are the bad things about religion? The same things can be leveled at religion I have suspected from misunderstanding evolution. Genocide riddles the Old Testament!

To me the "danger" of religion, or political parties or even perhaps evolutionary theory at it's most extreme is they seem to breed a blind eye towards other points of view. Contempt before investigation as a philosophy.

Ken has all but suggested I am some sort of mole for creationists despite numerous declarations to the contrary. He exhibits contmpt for my posts but fails ask ME the pointed questions as I was accused of. In fact he poses NO questions to me and is content to form opinion based on a series of comments. That is all well and good but until I am asked directly, and one must assume I will be honest in my response, you will be dealing with inaccuracies. Doesn't this approach a religious zealousness that denies certain facts to keep a particular paradigm "safe"?

To Fra's point, "maybe we are "not supposed to understand" certain things.... that's exactly my concern." Yes that is danger! YEC'ers actually state that if science and religion differ, science is wrong! Wow! ID "claims" to be more open minded but I'm slightly suspicious about that as a "movement" as well, but not nearly as crack-pot as YEC!

Does the insanely extreme view of YEC unduly color many scientists minds that any mention of a god a crack-pot idea?

Has anyone ever experienced a scientists who has corrupted data due to religious beliefs? Or refused to continue along a line of inquiry due to conflicting religious/scientific results?

Did Georges Lemaître postulate the "Big Bang" in an attempt to illustrate "creation"?
Would Georges Lemaître be considered a "creationist"?
Does this detract from his contributions?

How about the other way around, an "evolutionist" who connects the dots too liberally?

I think at this point in the conversation I am clearly more interested with the tone of responses and assumptions which as I said previously for the most part fit the mold presented by the "opposition". Very unfortunate....

W
russ_watters
#82
Mar15-11, 11:29 AM
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Quote Quote by Whalstib View Post
You always have the best short answers!

Once again I don't understand the compulsion to continue if one feels I am dealing dishonestly. I have surmised this from several posters and exercised the ignore option.

W
People are having trouble reconciling your claim that you are not a creationist with your continued use of creationist arguments, language and tactics. As you yourself said: you sound like a creationist.
Whalstib
#83
Mar15-11, 11:39 AM
P: 119
Did I actually ask this question? I don't recall so but I am treating this like a conversation not a trial and make limited trips back through the thread.

What I meant to infer was, it is simple to consider anyone who questions on any level evolutionary theory as a YEC'er and hails from the fundamentalist Christian faith in the US. Being a geology major I can say I have had interesting conversations with some of them, more than one would imagine! on dealing with the age of the earth.
With this approach any mention of god becomes a crack pot idea. Now I agree one shouldn't be overly concerned about god in the equation when conducting and experiment of crunching data. Being neutral is critical isn't it?

But does being zealously atheist also have an influence on research? After all it is just a mode of thinking to give "one the mental strength to achieve things."

Hells bells! Would be being too zealous a democrat or republican have an influence on research?!

So finally does being a zealous "evolutionists" influence research? Once again the definition of evolutionists is varied but I'm sure we all know the Dawkins and Myers of which I speak and are polar opposites for the religious zealot and nothing but opposite side of the same coin.

And if this logic is followed why are Myers and Dawkins allowed into the conversation any more than Morris?

Once again check yourself, this isn't about the science, we agree on that. It's about the prevailing attitude that I have seen expressed and observe a pattern that is hypocritical.

I could be wrong it's just an opinion and a conversation over morning coffee on holiday. Try not to take it too seriously and have fun!

W



Quote Quote by mishrashubham View Post

Now you ask what good is religion and tradition in our lives? Just like Fra said, having faith in something gives one the mental strength to achieve things.
Whalstib
#84
Mar15-11, 11:59 AM
P: 119
Quote Quote by russ_watters View Post
People are having trouble reconciling your claim that you are not a creationist with your continued use of creationist arguments, language and tactics. As you yourself said: you sound like a creationist.

Russ,

You could simply ask me. Perhaps my background was dispersed throughout the thread so I will recap.

If I was you I would be most concerned with my religious background which is Roman Catholic. I provide a link and a passage from an official Vatican document which may clarify any prejudices I may bring forth consciously of sub-consciously:

http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/co...rdship_en.html

Paragraph 63:
"According to the widely accepted scientific account, the universe erupted 15 billion years ago in an explosion called the “Big Bang” and has been expanding and cooling ever since. Later there gradually emerged the conditions necessary for the formation of atoms, still later the condensation of galaxies and stars, and about 10 billion years later the formation of planets. In our own solar system and on earth (formed about 4.5 billion years ago), the conditions have been favorable to the emergence of life. While there is little consensus among scientists about how the origin of this first microscopic life is to be explained, there is general agreement among them that the first organism dwelt on this planet about 3.5-4 billion years ago. Since it has been demonstrated that all living organisms on earth are genetically related, it is virtually certain that all living organisms have descended from this first organism. Converging evidence from many studies in the physical and biological sciences furnishes mounting support for some theory of evolution to account for the development and diversification of life on earth, while controversy continues over the pace and mechanisms of evolution. While the story of human origins is complex and subject to revision, physical anthropology and molecular biology combine to make a convincing case for the origin of the human species in Africa about 150,000 years ago in a humanoid population of common genetic lineage. However it is to be explained, the decisive factor in human origins was a continually increasing brain size, culminating in that of homo sapiens. With the development of the human brain, the nature and rate of evolution were permanently altered: with the introduction of the uniquely human factors of consciousness, intentionality, freedom and creativity, biological evolution was recast as social and cultural evolution."

It certain goes on from there to deal with "Gods plan" but certainly illustrates even on a religious front I have little baggage that would prevent us from agreeing on much more than you imagine.

W
russ_watters
#85
Mar15-11, 04:11 PM
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Quote Quote by Whalstib View Post
Excellent idea!

How about this. What are the bad things about religion?
Discussion of religion is prohibited by PF guidelines.

This is a science forum.
Russ,

You could simply ask me.
It really doesn't matter how many times you say you are not a YEC. If you continue to talk like one, people will beleive you are one. Or, more to the point, people will respond to your YEC arguments with anti-YEC arguments.
It certain goes on from there to deal with "Gods plan" but certainly illustrates even on a religious front I have little baggage that would prevent us from agreeing on much more than you imagine.
Are you saying your religious baggage or lack thereof comes directly from the Vatican? Did you flip-flop your beliefs without any thought in 2002 after the Vatican flip-flopped its position on these scientific issues?

No, that doesn't make it sound like you have less baggage than we perceive you to have.
Once again check yourself, this isn't about the science, we agree on that. It's about the prevailing attitude that I have seen expressed and observe a pattern that is hypocritical.
If your goal here is to dig into what you see as an attitude problem among scientists, that is also not a scientific discussion.

This thread is on very thin ice.
Evo
#86
Mar15-11, 04:13 PM
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This thread is all over the place, we don't discuss religious beliefs here, and it is not discussing the science behind evolution.

Closed.


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