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Laughable Times editorial about science and religion coming together over evolution.

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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-23-09 01:06 PM
Original message
Laughable Times editorial about science and religion coming together over evolution.
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/23/opinion/23wright.html...

Wright makes some cogent arguments why religious people should except evolution. But I do not find any of his reasoning for the scientific minded to accept any religious doctrine. Holding out there there could be some undefined "higher purpose", or twisting the failings of Paley into somehow saying that he was right, just won't due the trick.
Nowhere does he give any good reason for God to be considered as a force in nature.
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OHdem10 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-23-09 01:12 PM
Response to Original message
1. Could it be that he is seeking a way for those Religious( who have
been so opposed to teaching of evolution) to find a way
to meld their Religious beliefs with Science. Catholics do.
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-23-09 01:14 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Could be,
but it also seems that he is trying to get science oriented people to accept that religious forces are also at play. He does this badly.
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Tikki Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-23-09 01:48 PM
Response to Original message
3. The 'higher purpose' of working your synapse around......
the Science of Evolution is: Your head doesn't hurt so much anymore as clarity
begins to reveal reality.


Tikki
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laconicsax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-23-09 08:11 PM
Response to Original message
4. Here's his reasoning:
The anti-science crowd is wrong because evolution has been proven.
The anti-religion is wrong because they can't prove that God doesn't exist.

I'm convinced. I can't prove that Marduk didn't kill Tiamat and use her body to create the universe. The universe exists so it must have been created and nothing can be created unless by a creator! The story of Marduk and Tiamat explains how it happened--Marduk created the universe. I've been so blinded by my faith in evolutionism that I didn't even stop to consider that I might be wrong about Marduk.

Thank you Robert Wright for opening my eyes to the glory of Marduk--the ultimate god whom we must thank for creating the universe and my new favorite band.
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Interloper Donating Member (102 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-23-09 08:21 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Thee Universe?
You say "the universe" as if there is only one.

In this universe humanity came into existace by being genetically engineered in planned bursts by ancient aliens that came to this earth millions of years ago, and now live in bases below the surface. Ask for their contact each night before you go to sleep and express your consent to go with them. Then you will know the truth.
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ironbark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-24-09 01:34 AM
Response to Reply #5
7. The concept of multiple universes
is mentioned many times in Hindu Puranic literature, such as in the Srimad Bhagavatam:

"Every universe is covered by seven layers earth, water, fire, air, sky, the total energy and false ego each ten times greater than the previous one. There are innumerable universes besides this one, and although they are unlimitedly large, they move about like atoms in You. Therefore You are called unlimited" (Srimad Bhagavatam 6.16.37)

"Lord Śiva said: My dear son, I, Lord Brahmā and the other demigods, who rotate within this universe under the misconception of our greatness, cannot exhibit any power to compete with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, for innumerable universes and their inhabitants come into existence and are annihilated by the simple direction of the Lord" (Srimad Bhagavatam 9.4.56)

"After separating the different universes, the gigantic universal form of the Lord, which came out of the causal ocean, the place of appearance for the first puruṣa-avatāra, entered into each of the separate universes, desiring to lie on the created transcendental water" (Srimad Bhagavatam 2.10.10)



Perhaps religion and science move closer together when it is recognized that in several core respects religion beat science to it ;-)

21:30 Do the Unbelievers not see that the heavens and the earth were joined together, before We clove them asunder? We made every living thing from water. Will they not then believe?
Quran.

Nhaaaaaa....They will just dismiss it all as lucky guess

;-)


"Split the Atoms heart and therein thou will find a Sun
Persian mystic poet getting 'lucky'.

;-)
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Silent3 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-24-09 08:04 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. The concept of multiple UNIverses is an oxymoron.
There can be multiple perspectives, world views, "realms" of experience, etc. but there's a reason for the UNI in "universe".

I understand that there are popular watered-down colloquial uses of the word "universe", but why not embrace the full power of the word? The universe is that which embraces EVERYTHING. If you can imagine two different universes, then those two things, whatever you want to call them, aren't really universes at all but smaller realms which both exist in the large context of one UNIverse.
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ironbark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-25-09 03:17 AM
Response to Reply #8
15. Please take the semantic quibble

to contemporary quantum physicists.


Before getting to why you should or should not believe in multiple universes, there's a semantic point we ought to deal with. If the universe is, as the dictionary has it, "all existing things ... regarded as a whole," then isn't it true by definition that there is only one such thing? (After all, uni- is built right into the word itself.) Well, yes. But when physicists and philosophers talk about different space-time domains being "two universes," what they generally mean is that those regions are 1) very, very large; 2) "causally isolated" from each other (meaning that an event in one cannot have an effect in another); and hence 3) mutually unknowable by direct observation (since observing something means causally interacting with it). The case for saying the two domains are separate universes is further strengthened if 4) they have very different characters: if, say, one of them has three spatial dimensions (like ours), whereas the other has 17 dimensions. Finallyand here is the existentially titillating possibilitytwo domains might be called separate universes if 5) they are "parallel," meaning that they contain somewhat different versions of the same entities, like your own alter ego.
Thinkers who entertain the possibility that there are lots of universes have invented a new term for the entire ensemble: "the multiverse."
http://slate.msn.com/id/2087206

Semantics dealt with and aside.the multiple universes/multiverse is a contemporary notion of quantum physics.and the Hindu scriptures beat them to it...repeatedly and by a long shot. ;-)

As diverse scriptures have done on many occasions-

21:30 Do the Unbelievers not see that the heavens and the earth were joined together, before We clove them asunder? We made every living thing from water. Will they not then believe?
Quran.

The physical heavens and the earth all joined together? Then clove assunder? Bet that would make a big bang ;-)
And every living thing from water?

Now cant you just picture yourself/anybody in 600ad sitting in the sand and getting >that< revelation/ information from an illiterate herdsman?

And yet...even in the face of such verses that must have struck them as incomprehensible/insanethey still believed and followedI wonder why?

;-)
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Silent3 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-25-09 02:10 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. You might as well quote from Nostradamus
Those words are very open to many interpretations, that one of those interpretations vaguely kinda sorta matches up with something from physics isn't much to go on.

Besides, the better parallel isn't the big bang itself, but a time shortly after the big bang when the average heat of the universe dropped enough for a disunity of forces to appear.
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ironbark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-26-09 02:13 AM
Response to Reply #17
20. Then show me the some examples of the many interpretations
the heavens and the earth were joined together

Could mean what other than the heavens and the earth were joined together?

clove them asunder means what other than no longer joined together

every living thing from water means what other than every living thing was from water?

vaguely kinda sorta matches up with something from physics

LOL.
That the physical heavens and earth were combined/joined together is a precise concept perfectly matching contemporary physics. Likewise that it was cleft asunder, likewise that all life came from water. If you have quibbles with these statements as somehow not matching up with contemporary physics/biology then go right ahead and explain how.

Besides, the better parallel isn't the big bang itself

Nope, the moment at which the cloving asunder occurred is now known as the Big Bang.

but a time shortly after the big bang when the average heat of the universe dropped enough for a disunity of forces to appear.

Oh!
That point shortly after the big bang when the forces/matter that had been joined together now experience a disunity and the expanding universe is born?

With power did We construct heaven. Verily, We are expanding it.
Quran 47.

;-)

Yea, yea.I knowThe clear, direct, succinct and precise reference to the physical heavens as expanding vaguely kinda sorta matches up with something from physics

;-)
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-26-09 08:18 AM
Response to Reply #20
21. No
This just shows that primitive cultures thought that the Earth was somehow different from the sky and heavens. No awareness that the earth is just another planet in another star system like billions of others.
Tell me when exactly when the Earth was no longer joined with the rest of the Universe?
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ironbark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-26-09 09:41 AM
Response to Reply #21
22. Whaaaaaaaaaaat?

How does the recognition that the earth is not physically connected to the moon, sun, stars become primitive cultures thought that the Earth was somehow different from the sky and heavens.????

The proposition does not relate to anything said or quoted in prior posts nor to the beliefs of the primitive culture of the time. They perceived the obvious separation and distance between terrestrial and heavenly bodies (you cant?) The only point at which the notion of somehow different enters the equation is at the point of recognition- these are not the same body, not joined together.

No awareness that the earth is just another planet in another star system like billions of others.

No such awareness is required to recognise that the earth, moon, sun are physically separate.

Though I do admire the semantic filibuster determination to avoid the Qurans recognition that these bodies >had been< joined together and then cleft asunder ;-)

Tell me when exactly when the Earth was no longer joined with the rest of the Universe?

A non question. No claim/suggestion of the Earths separation from the Universe was made.

Elementary Physics-
As used by cosmologists, the term Big Bang generally refers to the idea that the universe has expanded from a primordial hot and dense initial condition at some finite time in the past, and continues to expand to this day. This is the "hypothesis of the primeval atom".

Within that primeval atom was all the matter joined together that was cleft asunder in the Big Bang to form the expanding universe.

..as suggested by Lematre in 1927, this observation was taken to indicate that all very distant galaxies and clusters have an apparent velocity directly away from our vantage point:

It is the very fact of >separation< and movement of distant galaxies that led to the primeval atom/Big Bang hypothesis- all joined together, then cleft asunder, still expanding.

Nothing to do with Earth was somehow different or awareness that the earth is just another planet.
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Silent3 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-26-09 09:41 AM
Response to Reply #20
23. Other interpretations
"the heavens and the earth were joined together"

A child before being born, at one with the mother.
Any period of perceived "ancient glory", where the present time is seen as a degenerate condition.
Any state of bliss where one feels "at one with the universe".

"With power did We construct heaven. Verily, We are expanding it."

Any expansion of a movement, kingdom, empire, doctrine. Creating a better world, and making it grow.

Could mean what other than the heavens and the earth were joined together?

It's only by allowing a HUGE amount of poetic license that the English words "heaven" and "earth", or any words from past languages for which those English words are used as translations, that a "heaven" being together with, then separated from an "earth" is anything at all like what we theorize about the Big Bang.

That the physical heavens and earth were combined/joined together is a precise concept perfectly matching contemporary physics.

Precise? Precise? Maybe there are multiple universes, and the dictionary you use for words like "precise" comes from one of them.

Lots of things expand, lot of things split, lots of things undergo majestic change (or can by mythologized as such). Yes, I can see how some people go "ooh!" and "aah!" at some of these kinds of parallels, but then again, it's like the experiment where a room full of people are all given the same horoscope, not knowing that everyone else in the room is getting exactly the same thing they are, and the large majority of people in the room think the horoscope is an amazingly good personalized match for themselves.

Hindsight is 20/20, especially when it comes to thinking you can see patterns and parallels. Show me a totally new breakthrough in physics made purely by parsing ancient texts FIRST, then discovering the new physical laws, rather than solid scientific research coming first, and the "wisdom" and "insight" of ancient texts only discovered retrospect, THEN I'll be impressed.
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charlie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-26-09 11:19 AM
Response to Reply #23
24. Don't knock it
Von Daniken made a good living doing that. Spaceships in Ezekiel, atomic bombs in Genesis...
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Why Syzygy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-24-09 09:23 AM
Response to Reply #4
9. Darwinian-ism has NOT been "proven". nt
Use the terms correctly. Darwinian-ism <> evolution.
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-24-09 09:44 AM
Response to Reply #9
10. I've never heard the term
Darwian-ism. Is that some ID contrivance?
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Why Syzygy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-24-09 02:01 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. I've never heard the term "ID contrivance"
I don't know what Darwian-ism is. I said, "Darwinian-ism".
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-25-09 08:44 AM
Response to Reply #11
16. Yes I misspelled it.
That's because the spell checker hasn't heard of Darwinian-ism either.
"ID contrivance" is a made up phrase to confuse the facts about evolution.
So I'm asking, by saying "Darwinian-ism" hasn't been proven, are you actually saying evolution hasn't been proven?
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trotsky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-24-09 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #10
12. Yes, yes it is.
IDers love to use "Darwinism" in place of evolution - because Darwin is Satan.
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laconicsax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-24-09 02:54 PM
Response to Reply #9
13. What on earth is 'Darwinian-ism?'
If by "Darwinian-ism," you mean Darwinian Evolution (i.e. evolution by natural selection) then you're just plain wrong.

Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection is as close to proven as possible for any scientific theory--every year, new discoveries confirm predictions made by the theory and biology as a discipline completely falls apart without evolution. DNA evidence points to common ancestry and genetics explains the mechanisms involved in evolution.

Speciation events have been observed, natural selection as a mechanism is proven every time a virus, parasite, or bacteria mutates into new a drug-resistant strain. Ever hear of the peppered moth? That's another example of directly observed natural selection.

All the evidence available indicates that Darwinian evolution is true and none of it indicates that it is false.
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uberllama42 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-24-09 12:47 AM
Response to Original message
6. Wright signs the praises of the God of the Gaps
There is still an area where we can squeeze God, but His little box keeps him from interacting with the physical world. If you want to stick God into that little space, there's no reason why he can't go there. But there is positively no reason why he should go there.

He suggests that the fact that natural selection is so powerful might be taken as evidence of God, but I can't discern why he thinks that. We have discovered a naturalistic mechanism that has formed life into the form it has today. Really, it relies on a tautological observation about survival and reproduction. It doesn't have any characteristics of a system that could only be put in place by an intelligent agent.
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laconicsax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-24-09 02:57 PM
Response to Original message
14. Jerry Coyne rips this editorial to shreds:
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BurtWorm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-25-09 03:16 PM
Response to Reply #14
18. Excellently done, Mr. Coyne.
:applause:
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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-25-09 05:05 PM
Response to Original message
19. Well, most religious people have no trouble with evolution, and
the ones who do are impervious to arguments.
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