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Science and religion

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Guest 2smart4u
Its amazing that a community only a stone's throw away from Manhattan, a center for culture and advanced thinking, can be caught in such a time-warp.  First of all, archaeological is the correct spelling and 'incurious' is not a word in the dictionary, sort of belies your level of intelligence.  Secondly, stop relying on Fox News, Sean Hannity, and a bunch of old men gathered in the desert 2000 years ago for your pontifications on science/religion.  Perhaps you should try reading books that actually explain the world around us based on evidence that we can see and touch.  I know learning can be scary but some of us are still evolving so perhaps you'd like to join us.

As for the teacher and his first amendment rights, I suspect that if the teacher were preaching the value of the KKK in our society or that Muslim extremists' views on religion are the only way to salvation, he'd be on the unemployment line.  It has nothing to do with the First Amendment and much more to do with this pathetic, small-minded man trying to impose his views on impressionable minds.  Another sad day for our education system.  Maybe if we paid teachers more money we'd attract people actually qualified to teach.

It's so nice of you to grace us with your presence. I'm curious, just what are you "still evolving" into. My guess is the Pillsbury Doughboy.

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Guest mmurphy21

Not only is there evidence (100's of intermediate fossils) between our primate ancestor and modern man, there is also fossil evidence (missing links if you must) that connect fish to amphibians, amphibians to reptiles, reptiles to birds, reptiles to mammals, and even land based ancestors of the whale to the sea faring whale of today. For anyone to say that there is no evedence for evolution is demonstrating utter and complete ignorance of science and makes anything you say on the subject meaningless. And to use Ann Colter as your science reference only goes to support your total ignorance even more. I've heard the complaints from fundamentalists about scientists and other "educated individuals" being condescending or believing that they are superior but with people like 2smart4u it doesn't take much to be more intellectually "evolved." I am a Christian and have attended church regularly for 50 years and have also taught Sunday School. I have no problem believing in the Bible and in evolution as do most Christians worldwide. Science, and in particular evolution, makes no comment about religion. It is outside the bounds of science to comment on a subject on which there is no evidence except to say that there is no evidence. There are certainly some scientists who do not believe in a God but that is only an expression of their personal belief and not of science. If we only had the fossil evidence for evolution it would still be an undisputable fact that life on earth evolved into the diversity we see today. But we have evidence from several fields of science which all point to the same conclusion that evolution has indeed occured. If you really want to know if evolution occured read some of the books that have been suggested or go the any "scientific" website such as Answers in Science (http://chem.tufts.edu/AnswersInScience/) or Understanding Evolution (http://evolution.berkeley.edu/). There are several more that wish only to educate. The only agenda science has is find natural causes for natural events. How could that be bad? Think about this. Why are there tens of thousands of Christian scientists who believe in both evolution and the bible if science is trying to take God out of our lives?

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Guest Guest

Someone once described New Jersey to me as "The Armpit of America".

I guess we can add "The Kansas of the East Coast" as well.

I bet that a Muslim being recorded preaching his dogma opinion in public school would recieve an altogether different reaction from the same dogma junky supporters of bible thumping in the classroom.

From quoting ANN COULTER on evolution to some lame church foyer "bear eating the athiest" joke....

Good grief.

I hope none of you silly people know how to build bonfires.

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Guest Alexthescientist
There is a lot of evidence. You're right that no direct common ancestor between chimpanzees and humans has yet been found, but the evolutionary changes distinct between various other species that both humans and chimpanzees are related to provide a lot of evidence. If you look at the dental and bone structure changes in common animals today, you can actually see the progression of evolution until humans. Some of these progressions include the number of cusps on the molars, the shape of the nasal aperture (the "nose hole" in the skull), the ratio of the distance across the eye and the distance between the eyes, and the spinal angle from flat to angled to upright. All of these things are very clear and are substantial evidence, and thats not even counting the genetic record present in all forms of life, which is clearly traceable.

While the author of this post is correct about changes in bone structure which have occured in life forms over millions of years, humans did not directly evolve from chimps. However, humans and chimps have a common ancestor. Evolution is not a ladder. It is a branching bush. For the record, several "prehuman" species have been discovered, such as Homo erectus, Homo habilis, and Australopithecus afarensis, to name a few.

Whether you choose to believe it or not, evolution is a proven fact. It is the unifying theme of biology. Thanks to Darwin, evolution, especially microevolution, has been fundamental to some social improvements this century, and it promises to be profoundly important to biomedical technology in the next generation. For example, evolution underlies many improvements in agriculture (e.g., the artificial selection of crop strains and livestock breeds). A less well-known fact is that evolutionary principles were used to produce many of our best vaccines. Some of the most promising areas for the future use of evolutionary biology lie in drug development and the biotechnology industry.

The sooner that the general public realizes these facts, the better off our country will be. Otherwise, we are destined to go the way of other great societies which have collapsed.

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Guest Alexthescientist
When the solution is simple, God is answering.

-Albert Einstein

Einstein also said:

The idea of a personal God is is quite alien to me and seems even naive.

And:

It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it.

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Guest Guest
Interesting.  It shows one human skull and various monkey and ape skulls. Your point ??

Chimps' cranial cavities are no bigger than about 390 cc's. Humans are no smaller than about 1400 cc's. So any skull that resembles a chimps or humans that is within that range has to be something other than a chimp or modern human. They were found in the fossil record from smallest to largest leading up to the present day human skull. They represent the evolution of our primate ancestors leading up to modern man. There is no species alive that has a cranial cavity within the 390 to 1400 cc range. There has never been a modern human skull found in the fossil record that was 200,000 years or older. If you can't figure it out you either don't have the intelligence to figure it out or you choose not to consider the evidence which makes one question your intelligence.

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As Richard Dawkins put it the theory of the big bang is the lesser of two evils when compared to creationism. Both are hard to believe but to say that its hard to believe that it all started from simple beginnings to complex things (big bang).. but then say its easier to believe that a super complex being, God, existed at the very beginning.. now that is even harder to believe.

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Guest Dave
This theory of evolution is nonsense.  If anyone reading this is seriously interested in educating themselves on the subject of Intelligent Design as opposed to Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, they should pick up Ann Coulter's book "Godless" and read chapters 8, 9 and 10.

You're getting information about evolution from Ann Coulter?

If you needed an operation on your brain, would you get your car mechanic to do it?

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Guest A Higher Life Form
It's so nice of you to grace us with your presence.  I'm curious, just what are you "still evolving" into. My guess is the Pillsbury Doughboy.

Ah, another brilliant mind, nice to meet you. I'll speak in elementary terms and concepts so that you understand. Evolution takes many millions of years but even small trends can be seen in the span of a few generations. Homo Sapiens as a species are taller than they were centuries ago, an evolutionary trend. Our brains have actually gotten larger over the course of time (at least some of us), another form of evolution. Very simple examples but perhaps its something you can comprehend and hopefully it captures my point which is simply that we are still evolving and always will be. Humans in their current form are not the end of the chain, we will continue to evolve/adapt to our surroundings.

Its amazing how threatened some people are by the idea. Instead of embracing it, they want to rely on some scrolls from a bunch of dead guys written thousands of years ago to define their existence, what a truly absurd way to order one's life. I am able to observe my surroundings and draw my own conclusions, and some of those conclusions are...welll...inconclusive. I'll probably never truly know how this world came about and I'll never truly know where we go when we die and I'm okay with that. I don't need some safety-net or some catch-all religious philosophy as a crutch that makes me feel okay about dying. I am fine living day-to-day and trying to have a positive influence on the world around me (i.e. delivering bed-nets to villages in Malawi, helping drill wells in Ugandan villages) and hoping that when I die I've left the world a better place. I sleep quite well with these thoughts.

By the way, the Pillsbury Doughboy although a bit overweight and soft, seems quite jovial and full of life so thanks for the compliment.

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Guest Guest
Read the thread, Kool-aid breath.  He said "lower life form" not early man.

Listen D**bA**, he said evolutionary theory is nonsense, among many other idiotic statements. Also, he doesn't know anything about what makes up a theory. Plus he can't spell but claims to be 2smart4u. So save the Kool-aid comebacks for the other threads, try adding something informative and factual.

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Guest Guest
Richard Dawkins (atheist).. one of the greatest thinkers of our time

watch as he answers every question with logic and reason

Does he answer what set the big bang in motion?

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Guest Guest
You're getting information about evolution from Ann Coulter?

If you needed an operation on your brain, would you get your car mechanic to do it?

I would definately take her advice on selling books. :D

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Guest 2smart4u
Ah, another brilliant mind, nice to meet you.  I'll speak in elementary terms and concepts so that you understand.  Evolution takes many millions of years but even small trends can be seen in the span of a few generations.  Homo Sapiens as a species are taller than they were centuries ago, an evolutionary trend.  Our brains have actually gotten larger over the course of time (at least some of us), another form of evolution.  Very simple examples but perhaps its something you can comprehend and hopefully it captures my point which is simply that we are still evolving and always will be.  Humans in their current form are not the end of the chain, we will continue to evolve/adapt to our surroundings. 

Its amazing how threatened some people are by the idea.  Instead of embracing it, they want to rely on some scrolls from a bunch of dead guys written thousands of years ago to define their existence, what a truly absurd way to order one's life.  I am able to observe my surroundings and draw my own conclusions, and some of those conclusions are...welll...inconclusive.  I'll probably never truly know how this world came about and I'll never truly know where we go when we die and I'm okay with that.  I don't need some safety-net or some catch-all religious philosophy as a crutch that makes me feel okay about dying.  I am fine living day-to-day and trying to have a positive influence on the world around me (i.e. delivering bed-nets to villages in Malawi, helping drill wells in Ugandan villages) and hoping that when I die I've left the world a better place.  I sleep quite well with these thoughts.

By the way, the Pillsbury Doughboy although a bit overweight and soft, seems quite jovial and full of life so thanks for the compliment.

"I don't need some safety net or some catch-all religious philosophy as a crutch that makes me feel good about dying" Really ?? My guess is that when you're not delivering bed-nets or drilling wells, you're doing a lot of weed. Pseudo -intellectuals like yourself always portray themselves as thinking on a higher level because they deny the existence of God. I'm ok with that, but I always wonder if athiests take their beliefs to the grave, or do they suddenly "get religion" when faced with imminent death.

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Guest Guest
Paul, I think you have a friend in "proud american".  You're both radical left Kool-aid drinkers. You guys should get together, you can hang out and talk about how you both evolved from worms.

Actually Patriot I consider you a friend also. Instead of calling people names why not go to the library and check out the books I've mentioned. I think that way, you could read about how you have evolved and how you can change. Of course if you like yourself the way you are than sorry, can't help.

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Guest Guest_James_*
Does he answer what set the big bang in motion?

No, he's talking about evolution, not cosmology. You'd want to hear from a cosmologist rather than an evolutionary biologist about the Big Bang.

It's a hard question, as the Big Bang is not an explosion of matter or energy, but rather the expansion of spacetime from a pointlike singularity. This means that time began with the Big Bang, which makes it difficult to make sense of your question since there was no "before" the Big Bang.

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Guest Artoo45
Since you've read so much on the subject, then you must be aware of the fact that there is no evidence to support evolution.  After one hundred years of serious archiology around the world, no one has ever found the "missing link" to prove man has evolved from an ape. Many remains of early man have been found and also that of monkeys and apes, but not one fragment of a "missing link. Until physical evidence is found, evolution is mearly a theory, and an unproven one at that.

2smart 2 spell archaeology correctly I guess. Your critical thinking skills aren't much better than your command of English.

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Guest Calybos
No, he's talking about evolution, not cosmology.  You'd want to hear from a cosmologist rather than an evolutionary biologist about the Big Bang.

It's a hard question, as the Big Bang is not an explosion of matter or energy, but rather the expansion of spacetime from a pointlike singularity.  This means that time began with the Big Bang, which makes it difficult to make sense of your question since there was no "before" the Big Bang.

I wonder why so many scientifically ignorant folks assume that evolution has something to do with "the origin of the universe"?

Even that jackass, Kent Hovind, confuses the two in his poorly constructed "challenge to evolutionists" (which basically demands that biologists manufacture living, macroscopic organisms and mutate them according to his specifications, from scratch).

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Guest Tom
"I don't need some safety net or some catch-all religious philosophy as a crutch that makes me feel good about dying"  Really ??  My guess is that when you're not delivering bed-nets or drilling wells, you're doing a lot of weed.

Ad hominem, unrelated, and entirely without basis.

Pseudo -intellectuals like yourself always portray themselves as thinking on a higher level

I know exactly what you mean! In fact, there's this guy who goes by '2smart4u' who won't respond to any actually arguments and instead acts as though his opposition 'smokes weed' and has some hidden agenda rather than attempting to understand their position and methodologies.

because they deny the existence of God. I'm ok with that, but I always wonder if athiests take their beliefs to the grave, or do they suddenly "get religion" when faced with imminent death.

I'm sure we can provided numerous anecdotal stories about this particular subject for either side of the argument, but in the end it has absolutely no bearing on the subject of evolution or faith. This is akin to arguing that because children believe in Santa Claus and that belief brings them great joy every year as well as a reason to behave, that Santa Claus is real.

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Guest James Allen
You're getting information about evolution from Ann Coulter?

If you needed an operation on your brain, would you get your car mechanic to do it?

If you want truth, then pick up Ann Coulter's book and burn it.

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Guest James Allen
You're getting information about evolution from Ann Coulter?

If you needed an operation on your brain, would you get your car mechanic to do it?

If you want truth, then pick up Ann Coulter's book and burn it.

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Guest Guest
Five Major Misconceptions about evolution.

   

              1. Evolution has never been observed.

              2. Evolution violates the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

              3. There are no transitional fossils.

              4. The theory of evolution says that life originated, and evolution

                  proceeds, by random chance.

              5. Evolution is only a theory; it hasn't been proved.

Let’s do a brief take on each item.

1) False - Evolution has been observed in the lab. We have seen bacteria speciate, and novel forms of organisms (e.g., nylon eating bacteria) have evolved in recent times.

2) False - If this statement were true, then snowflakes would not be able to form, puppies would never grow into dogs, and we wouldn’t have an Internet.

3) False - There are literally thousands of fossils that show how organisms have evolved over time.

4) False - The origin of life correctly falls within the domain of abiogensis. Evolution proceeds not by random, but by organisms adapting to their environment via genetic changes such as mutations, genetic drift, and so on.

5) True - No scientific theory can be proven. However, a scientific theory is not just a vague notion as the word is used in a non-technical sense. Evolution has been repeatedly tested and modified over the course of one hundred years. As of today, it is the best scientific explanation for how organisms change over time, and is on ground as firm as any other sceintific theory.

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The debate here is whether a teacher should be allowed to espouse their own religious views in class. NO. NO. NO. I'm sure Christians would blow a gasket if a Jewish teacher told them they were not part of the chosen people, and therefore didn't count, or a Muslim telling all their kids they were infidels. Get some perspective and stop marring the issue. The teacher should be taken aside and told he cannot, on school time, proselytise. He can organize a bible study on his own time, and invite students if they wish to discuss, but the classroom is an inappropriate place.

David Paszkiewicz crossed the church-state boundary -- he knows better than that, he just knew he'd get away with it, knowing how vehement his Christian cronies are.

We're supposed to be an enlightened town. We sure as hell aren't acting like it. Guess we all need to go back to school, in addition to learning tolerance and manners.

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