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Gator
04-30-2008, 03:59 PM
Found an interesting article in the NY Times on science and religion. Just FYI.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/29/sc...3b4&ei=5087%0A

Scientist at Work | Francisco J. Ayala
Roving Defender of Evolution, and of Room for God

By CORNELIA DEAN
Published: April 29, 2008
For a university professor, Francisco J. Ayala spends a lot of time on the road.

Chas Metivier
SCIENCE AND THEOLOGY Francisco J. Ayala says that belief in evolution does not necessarily rule out belief in God.

An evolutionary biologist and geneticist at the University of California, Irvine, he speaks often at universities, in churches, for social groups and elsewhere, usually in defense of the theory of evolution and against the arguments of creationism and its ideological cousin, intelligent design.

Usually he preaches to the converted. But not always.

As challenges to the teaching of evolution continue to emerge, legislators debate measures equating the teaching of creationism with academic freedom and a new movie links Darwin to evils ranging from the suppression of free speech to the Holocaust, “I get a lot of people who don’t know what to think,” Dr. Ayala said. “Or they believe in intelligent design but they want to hear.”

Dr. Ayala, a former Dominican priest, said he told his audiences not just that evolution is a well-corroborated scientific theory, but also that belief in evolution does not rule out belief in God. In fact, he said, evolution “is more consistent with belief in a personal god than intelligent design. If God has designed organisms, he has a lot to account for.”


An interesting perspective from one scientist. I like his approach to things but the article doesn't get in to how he reconciles the specifics of a bible/koran god vs the implications of evolution (which would be interesting). Have to get the book.

Thanks.
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ranma1/2
05-01-2008, 12:30 AM
nothing new for the millions of religious scientists out there. Evolution at best rules out a literal interpretatoin of some scriptures. (usualy the scriptures themselves are good at ruling themselves out as literal.)
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glo
05-01-2008, 12:17 PM
Well, I have heard the perhaps contradictory view that evolution theory and the belief in a personal creator God would be very difficult to reconcile.

Unfortunately I have no links or other evidence to bring ... so I just add this statement (made by an atheist, not by a theist) into the discussion ...
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Gator
05-01-2008, 12:48 PM
Originally Posted by glo
Well, I have heard the perhaps contradictory view that evolution theory and the belief in a personal creator God would be very difficult to reconcile.
Hey glo,
Why is that? A personal creator god would be relatively undefined so could certainly fit if you think evolution is correct. There's no details that may conflict.

I'm not a big believer in science vs god thing. It can be used as support of personal ideas but since god is a philosophical point, it doesn't really address it.

Thanks.

(PS - I think I understood your point though if I didn't please ignore.)
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root
05-01-2008, 01:34 PM
At an individual level, it might not matter that much. However, any modern society which bases it's decisions on superstition rather than reality is heading for a disaster. Perhaps fitting that evolution is profoundly accepted in the west being a central focus on a countries success.

Let's face it the theory of Evolution is directly relavent to a countries policy making decision process. Infectious diseases from tuburcolosis to wheat rust are reappearing as they evolve resistence to our defences. Superbugs like MRSA and the deadly H5N1 bird flu or Ebola even. All of which could course a major pandemic, I don't want some Jerk in Government banging on about a pandemic being God's punishment for sins and we must live according to some religous principal in order to survive, when the answer lies in understanding EVOLUTION!!! do you?

Fishing policies to feed us also use the theory of evolution to predict future problems such as allowing fishermen to keep only large fish and throw back the small ones leading to the evolution of small fish. Tuskless Elephants evolving through natural selection because they don't get poached for ivory. Rat's and many other species considered pests evolving immunity to poisons.

Here is a shortlist to the acceptance of Evolutionary Reality by country:

Iceland = 80%
Denmark = 76%
Sweden = 78%
France = 74%
Japan = 72%
UK = 72%
Norway = 74%
Spain = 71%
Germany = 73%
Italy = 70%
Ireland = 68%
Poland = 64%
Croatia = 56%
Greece = 52%
Bulgaria = 48%
Latvia = 45%
US = 39%
Turkey = 27%

And don't assume that the rest are creationist orientated, as the rest are a mix of creationist AND agnostic on the question of Evolution. be interesting for stats from the middle east.......
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جوري
05-01-2008, 01:47 PM
argumentum ad populum is a good way to hale folks into abidance!
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root
05-01-2008, 01:58 PM
Originally Posted by Skye Ephémérine
argumentum ad populum is a good way to hale folks into abidance!
Are u in America or Latin America purest. In Arduis Fidelis, :D

Besides, it's not an arguement. It merely demonstrates average world opinion on the problems we face and how we expect our governments to evaluate evolutionary science in solving political problems relavent to our understanding of it and not religous dogma.
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جوري
05-01-2008, 02:17 PM
Originally Posted by root
Are u in America or Latin America purest. In Arduis Fidelis, :D
I don't think arguing the triangulation of purest will make much of a difference, considering where America stands in your afore listed stats?

Besides, it's not an arguement. It merely demonstrates average world opinion on the problems we face and how we expect our governments to evaluate evolutionary science in solving political problems relavent to our understanding of it and not religous dogma.
Actually arguing an antediluvian theory or calibrating it to fit the tides, has no impact whatsoever on how we solve political or world health care problems....

folks don't sit around arguing gee MRSA is evolving and evolving take that creationists.. they think MRSA is not a homogeneous entity-- let's analyze it by means of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and typing for resistance and toxin genes. do we go for daptomycin or vancomycin plus an antistaphylococcal penicillin? what about in pts with severe kidney failure or in VRSA subtypes.. great let's run some double blind clinical trials on linezolid and tigecycline..

Darwin, creationists and/or evolutionists aren't sitting at the table arguing you come from ape or you come from lizard ergo jumping genes and some mysterious mutations unbeknown to scientsts the world over-- just a scientific committee from all backgrounds and trains of thoughts focusing on the problems we face at hand and how to be one step ahead an acquired resistance by any one virus or bacteria...

as for solving political problems, well I am sure you can tie that one nicely for us, but I am post call and in need of a nap so you'll forgive if I don't hang around for that one...


cheers
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root
05-01-2008, 02:36 PM
That's the whole point entirely Purest. That's exactly what happens in societies whose political system is incfuenced by religous dogma.

Though you chose a highly doubtful scenario, bottom line remains that EVOLUTIONARY science is critical to a Governments abilty to make informed decisions as opposed to religous dogma......

Only a few months ago here in the UK, a top church leader attributed Global warming to societies lack of religous faith and lack of religous following, thus he concluded Global Warming being gods punishment. Surely we all want our political leaders to place solid scientific theory over such "faith" based opinions.

On a side note on Global warming, at least religion can point us in the right direction as how to prepare:

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جوري
05-01-2008, 05:30 PM
at the 'root' of every scientific/technological fact lies an enigma.. you can only explain away so much, the how's the what, the when's but almost never truly the whys?

Why does a perfectly healthy human being end up with vitiligo? why does another end up with pemphigus? is it auto-immune? what triggers a perfectly healthy body to attack itself at this particular point in time, why are some genes prone to loss of function or a mal-function? why do two people who have the same nonfunctional gene end up displaying different handicap or if the same handicap why is there heterogeneity, or incomplete penetrence so that one is completly bedridden whilst the other rarely requires a cane?... why are we able to break tissues apart to the lowest possible componenet (base pairs) and yet when re-annealing them never capture the essence of shape or form? you'll explain away so much and then you'll encounter a break in causality!

I say if he wants to blame it on a divine force, he is perfectly entitled, mankind has never been able to take responsibility for the carnage it has unleashed upon the world where it has found itself once upon a time in harmony...

If you understand how science and technology works, you'll also concede your surrender to the fact that it can only take you so far, that theories are a good alternative for the rational mind to make sense of things that are otherwise frightening and/or disabling.. but it will remain the human condition to travail and at the same time to be plagued by troubling questions....


cheers
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snakelegs
05-01-2008, 05:38 PM
Originally Posted by root
nifty ark!!!!
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جوري
05-01-2008, 05:52 PM
Originally Posted by snakelegs
nifty ark!!!!
yeah.. I wanted to comment on that to, you beat me to the punch.. I nap and lose my sense o humor :-[..
btw I am so anti catching a wink.. but eh an opportunity presented itself :D

peace
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root
05-01-2008, 05:52 PM
Originally Posted by Skye Ephémérine
at the 'root' of every scientific/technological fact lies an enigma.. you can only explain away so much, the how's the what, the when's but almost never truly the whys?
The only fact your missing is science does not offer "facts". .

Why does a perfectly healthy human being end up with vitiligo? why does another end up with pemphigus? is it auto-immune? what triggers a perfectly healthy body to attack itself at this particular point in time, why are some genes prone to loss of function or a mal-function? why do two people who have the same nonfunctional gene end up displaying different handicap or if the same handicap why is there heterogeneity, or incomplete penetrence so that one is completly bedridden whilst the other rarely requires a cane?... why are we able to break tissues apart to the lowest possible componenet (base pairs) and yet when re-annealing them never capture the essence of shape or form? you'll explain away so much and then you'll encounter a break in causality!
Pehaps God is responsible! My point here is and always has been that this very statement is a dangerous road to go down, especially when world leaders are living such delusions.

I say if he wants to blame it on a divine force, he is perfectly entitled,
I agree entirely with you!!!!!! Are you even reading my words, scroll back up to my original post you will find me saying:

At an individual level, it might not matter that much.

I think it matters entirely if a country launched a nuke because "God told him too" or we tackle global warming by preying for forgiveness of our sins......

mankind has never been able to take responsibility for the carnage it has unleashed upon the world where it has found itself once upon a time in harmony...
Harmony? come again.....

If you understand how science and technology works, you'll also concede your surrender to the fact that it can only take you so far, that theories are a good alternative for the rational mind to make sense of things that are otherwise frightening and/or disabling.. but it will remain the human condition to travail and at the same time to be plagued by troubling questions....
Agreed science cannot give us solid facts, only a probability. You have to question those that would back a donkey from blackpool pleasure beach to win the Grand national as insane. But you could not rule it out winning as a fact.

You could randomly select 10,000 numbers between 1 & 10 and select 3 every single time. It's not impossible, we must accept the certain ammount of probability. However, only a fool would back that.

Since your not even reading my post, why respond. But I know you will :D
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جوري
05-01-2008, 06:14 PM
Originally Posted by root
The only fact your missing is science does not offer "facts".
Where have I disagreed with that? I have only been dancing around that since I joined the bloody forum? no fact is absolute!



Pehaps God is responsible! My point here is and always has been that this very statement is a dangerous road to go down, especially when world leaders are living such delusions.
Where have I disgareed with that either? I think 1/3 of the world is plagued by the delusions of bush who is a leader of a so-called free world, but I don't think it has anything to do with evolution or creationism.. it has to do with one man's level of insanity and the morons who are willing to follow him into the abyss!


I agree entirely with you!!!!!! Are you even reading my words, scroll back up to my original post you will find me saying:
I haven't accused you of being disagreeable? in fact I have been able to over look your down right bellicose attitude on posts where I felt you had something of substance to offer, mostly your 'space' threads!

At an individual level, it might not matter that much.
true.. I don't think anyone person can deny another their ability to reason and draw entirely different conclusions than our own.

I think it matters entirely if a country launched a nuke because "God told him too" or we tackle global warming by preying for forgiveness of our sins......
well that is indeed concerning..
however, I have always felt that prayers function in a supporting capacity to what one must naturally reason through


Harmony? come again.....
I think if one were sequestered on an island, one will acquiesce to their environment and learn to live in balance with it.. I believe that the more varaibles one adds to their surrounding the more difficult it becomes, no different than a mathematical equation. Hence most of the things that plague man currently are of his own making. In other words. I know people love to blame everything on God 'higher power' but I believe at the root, they are responsible for their own actions!



Agreed science cannot give us solid facts, only a probability. You have to question those that would back a donkey from blackpool pleasure beach to win the Grand national as insane. But you could not rule it out winning as a fact.
And just a few sentences ago in your thunderous prolegomenon you were preaching me that science doesn't give us solid facts.. here we are a few paragraphs down... makes you wonder who is really not reading?

You could randomly select 10,000 numbers between 1 & 10 and select 3 every single time. It's not impossible, we must accept the certain ammount of probability. However, only a fool would back that.

Since your not even reading my post, why respond. But I know you will :D
is the pun intended on this one?

cheers
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glo
05-01-2008, 09:09 PM
Originally Posted by Gator
Hey glo,
Why is that? A personal creator god would be relatively undefined so could certainly fit if you think evolution is correct. There's no details that may conflict.
Hi Gator

Can I ask you what you mean by 'relatively undefined'?
The person I spoke to felt a creator God (as per monotheistic beliefs) would be quite clearly defined ... and that the more defined a deity was, the less likely it was to fit in with evolution. (I am just paraphrasing here, and I hope I am getting it right, because I am not sure what is meant by that ...)

Which religion, in your view, would define god more than monotheism?

And what does the more defined a deity is, the less likely it is to fit in with evolution mean to you?

Originally Posted by root
Here is a shortlist to the acceptance of Evolutionary Reality by country:

Iceland = 80%
Denmark = 76%
Sweden = 78%
France = 74%
Japan = 72%
UK = 72%
Norway = 74%
Spain = 71%
Germany = 73%
Italy = 70%
Ireland = 68%
Poland = 64%
Croatia = 56%
Greece = 52%
Bulgaria = 48%
Latvia = 45%
US = 39%
Turkey = 27%
Well, I grew up in Germany, and I cannot recall anybody ever telling me that evolution was not the true event!
I don't even recall anybody ever mentioning that it was a theory, rather than proven fact ...
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root
05-01-2008, 10:02 PM
Originally Posted by Skye Ephémérine
Where have I disagreed with that? I have only been dancing around that since I joined the bloody forum? no fact is absolute!
I think it would be a fact that if you went to the top of blackpool tower and jumped off, your going to die. I think that is absolute........

In explaining why you will accelerate and then come to a very abrupt stop will only be a "Theory", The theory of Genaral relativity has many problems it needs to iron out and our understanding of it will change and be updated as new data comes along. For now, we are "probably" right in describing your pending doom.


Where have I disgareed with that either? I think 1/3 of the world is plagued by the delusions of bush who is a leader of a so-called free world, but I don't think it has anything to do with evolution or creationism.. it has to do with one man's level of insanity and the morons who are willing to follow him into the abyss!
As I said before, a president/prime minister or Iranian Poodle need to asses threats based on scientific understanding and the ability to take on board the theory of evolution as opposed to religous dogma.


I haven't accused you of being disagreeable? in fact I have been able to over look your down right bellicose attitude on posts where I felt you had something of substance to offer, mostly your 'space' threads!
And your point is?


true.. I don't think anyone person can deny another their ability to reason and draw entirely different conclusions than our own
I do, I don't want a prime minister going to war because "God" came into his dream and told him to?


well that is indeed concerning..
however, I have always felt that prayers function in a supporting capacity to what one must naturally reason through
Glad you see the bigger picture


I think if one were sequestered on an island, one will acquiesce to their environment and learn to live in balance with it.. I believe that the more varaibles one adds to their surrounding the more difficult it becomes, no different than a mathematical equation. Hence most of the things that plague man currently are of his own making. In other words. I know people love to blame everything on God 'higher power' but I believe at the root, they are responsible for their own actions!
One who is claiming to be acting on devine inspiration is not responsible for their own actions. History has taught us this.


And just a few sentences ago in your thunderous prolegomenon you were preaching me that science doesn't give us solid facts.. here we are a few paragraphs down... makes you wonder who is really not reading?
Your not reading, I said science does not do facts.

is the pun intended on this one?
Not at all, if all we have in science is a probabilty then I must concede the possibillity that your belief and your religion might be correct. But I consider it no more or less a chance of being true than a donkey on blackpool beach winning the Grand National......
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جوري
05-01-2008, 10:14 PM
Originally Posted by root
I think it would be a fact that if you went to the top of blackpool tower and jumped off, your going to die. I think that is absolute........
lucky I carry that secret parachute with me at all times then!

In explaining why you will accelerate and then come to a very abrupt stop will only be a "Theory", The theory of Genaral relativity has many problems it needs to iron out and our understanding of it will change and be updated as new data comes along. For now, we are "probably" right in describing your pending doom.
The theory is indeed plausible but doesn't take into account many other variables. See above!


As I said before, a president/prime minister or Iranian Poodle need to asses threats based on scientific understanding and the ability to take on board the theory of evolution as opposed to religous dogma.
scientists don't make good politicians and vice versa. I put the blame solely on the masses who happily put them in charge!


And your point is?
You are free to decipher what you may!


I do, I don't want a prime minister going to war because "God" came into his dream and told him to?
If you are not a part of the solution, you are a part of the problem. I say stage a coup.. I highly doubt it will be effectively carried out on a forum. When all else fails, have a determinate plan to save you and yours. Perhaps an underground shelter and the likes.. A great burden though, you must heed for the future of all man kind might one day just rest on your shoulders :)


Glad you see the bigger picture
I could always see the bigger picture.. I am not selective about what I want to see!


One who is claiming to be acting on devine inspiration is not responsible for their own actions. History has taught us this.
That is a general statement!..


Your not reading, I said science does not do facts.
I understand this to be your third episode of a scintillating scotomata for the day?


Not at all, if all we have in science is a probabilty then I must concede the possibillity that your belief and your religion might be correct. But I consider it no more or less a chance of being true than a donkey on blackpool beach winning the Grand National......
You must sign up for a proper epidemiology and applied mathematics dealing with collection and interpretation of quantitative data and proper useage of probability theory to estimate these parameters then so we can take you with an ounce of serious-mindedness then..

cheers
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