Yip, well said. we may come from opposite sides of the debate but i agree with what you said.
However I still don't understand why some people on here seem to think that there is no value in formal debate between prominent creationists and evolutionists. Surely these types of debates would be able to reach a far wider audience (more than just 76) of the undecided and those with niggling doubts. The people listening/reading/watching the debate could then also research further into the life and works of the presenters in the debate to test trust-worthiness, qualifications, etc. which is a bit harder to do on here.
btw, anyone read the debate i posted? Do you think this type of debate is a good idea? Was it done fairly?
Coyote seems to have a "feeling" of hate towards errors, and so presumably he trys to avoid telling lies. However we are all capable of doing something that we hate if it suits our purpose for a larger goal.
Speak for yourself.
Science is the exact opposite of lying and of unswerving belief in some particular dogma.
Lies will be caught out, but that's not the reason the vast majority of scientists try their absolute best to avoid not only lies but errors of any kind. The real reason is that those are both the antithesis of science.
You seem to think that "we are all capable of doing something that we hate if it suits our purpose for a larger goal" -- but I hope you don't approve of that, or that you don't really believe it.
Lying might be appropriate to promote one's religious beliefs (there is even a name for this in Islam), but that concept is entirely foreign to science and any scientists who are caught lying or even fudging data are persona non grata from then on.
Perhaps if you knew something of science you would know this. (And yes, you have touched on a particular pet peeve of mine.)
Religious belief does not constitute scientific evidence, nor does it convey scientific knowledge.
btw, anyone read the debate i posted? Do you think this type of debate is a good idea? Was it done fairly?
I skimmed the beginning. It looks to be worth further reading.
Suggestion: Come up with a good title and post that link in the "Links and Information" forum. In this topic, the link will be lost - In a new specific topic there can be some new specific discussion of the links content.
Again, what in your athiest belief compels you to respect someone.
There is no "atheistic way of life belief," we all act the same regardless on where we stand on the "is there a god?" question. Your characterization of atheism is incorrect.
Also, attributing respect or morality to god doesn't give any more value or meaning to those virtues; what gives them any meaning at all is that we, by our own choosing, select them as good social skills. If you're saying that god told us to do this, then we're just following orders, and respect and morality are meaningless at that point.
I guess that's the difference between atheists and believers; you guys conviced yourselves that you have to follow orders, and we atheists (at least me) feel I can figure it out on my own, without a book telling me what to do. I'm more than capable of doing it because I know better.
If god gave me that capability, well cool, but it still means I chose to be respectful and moral (by my standards), not just following orders.
God may have given us the capabilities to be moral (we can argue that elsewhere) but we still choose to be that way on our own. Humans are social, and societies work best when there is order. We learned this on our own, living in different socities, and it's not special because many other social animals follow this defacto social skill.
Yes, you may respect someone, but you don't need to.
You need to in the same way you need to eat ... because there are consequences. Try not respecting people that you meet every day and see if you get along well; see if you don't need to be respectful to get along.
Do that for a month and see how it goes. Then imagine being a hunter gatherer and interacting within a social group - imagine if being respectful was needed to get along with other: Of course it was (and this is before the Bible, so the Bible can't be the reason).
And again, if god created us capable to do this, its still be our own necessity that we choose to be that way.
Its all us, we're the rulers of our own minds.
And I'm glad that my atheism helps me understand reality that way: no unnecessary invisible supervisors.
''The stereotype of a fully rational and objective ‘scientific method,’ with individual scientists as logical (and interchangeable) robots, is self-serving mythology''
I don't think that we need to fool ourselves, that either be it in religion or science. Humans will be humans. Results can and have been changed, peer pressure does have an impact.
I do think, however, that religion such as christianity (or others such as Budhism) help favor righteous behavior amongst humans however (Is this not one of the advantages of religious behaviors that would have been favored by natural selection ?)
quote: It does matter to the creationists because as christians we find it important not to lie. To lie is to sin against God which is the opposite of the way that christians are trying to live their lives.
Given the notorious dishonesty of creationists, this only supports the view that creationism is not Christian.
quote: As a different subject, what compels an athiest to tell the truth and not lie?
quote: As for a written debate check out link below.
Thanks for that nice demonstration of why scientists shouldn't bother with creationism.
And I would never propose a debating method where you could Gish Gallop around. It would be focused debates on particular points. With the points being told in advance so the participants can come prepared.
Been tried. The "evolutionists" were totally on-line with the idea -- indeed, they're the ones who made that requirement. It's the creationists who refuse to participate; in the particular case I have in mind, it was Duane Gish, "creation science's" Master Debator himself, who absolutely refused to debate.
Not that I can really blame the creationists -- except for their dishonesty -- , since there's really no other position they could take. To engage in an honest debate such as you and "evolutionists" propose, one has to present and support and discuss the evidence. "Creation science" has no evidence, so the creationist debator would have no evidence to present or to support. "Creation science" depends on misrepresenting science and the actual evidence, so there's no way that a creationist can honestly discuss the evidence without conceding defeat. All they have going for them are lies, deception, and outrageously dishonest "debate" tactics, like the Gish Gallop.
The problem is not all debates, but rather the dishonest public shows put on by creationists. An actual constructive discussion of the evidence is something that "evolutionists" would welcome, but sadly with creationists such an event is not possible. Believe me, I and many others have tried for decades and in vain to have some kind of meaningful discussion with creationists. Review the threads started by Calypsis4 to get some idea of how the archetypical creationist conducts himself.
Besides, I'm creationist, are you implying I'm not looking for the truth ?
There are indeed creationists who look for the truth, but sadly they are in the minority. They also tend to be rather short-lived (as creationists, not in terms of life expectancy), the honest ones at least, because as they learn the truth they discover how much "creation science" lies and how its advocates make Christianity dependent on those lies (eg, John Morris of the ICR, son and heir of Dr. Henry Morris who co-founded the ICR, who stated absolutely "If the earth is more than 10,000 years old, then Scripture has no meaning" -- and the earth is indeed immensely older than 10,000 years, which is why ICR-trained geologists working directly with rock-hard geological evidence that the ICR had taught did not exist and could not exist or else Scripture would have no meaning suffered severe crises of faith; the then-still-creationist who reported that, Glenn R. Morton, would shortly thereafter be driven to the verge of atheism solely by "creation science"). Another one I knew "back in the day" on CompuServe was the most honest creationist I had ever encountered. Within a year, he was not only no longer a creationist, but he was also no longer a Christian. Some honest creationists, as they examine the actual evidence honestly, end up becoming atheists. Others remain Christians, but not the same as they had been; many even become avid anti-creationist (ie, the "creation science" brand of creationism). Others lose their honesty and become dishonest creationists, the only way they can retain their beliefs.
Most creationist already "know" the "Truth". All they're interested in is convincing people: both themselves and fellow creationists and potential victims ... er, I mean, potential converts.
So then, are you really looking for the truth? Or are you just interested in convincing yourself? I cannot answer that question; you must answer it yourself.
My introduction to a Mormon science-fiction writer, Orson Scott Card (eg, "Ender's Game"), was through a tape played in the mid/late 1980s at a local atheists' meeting called "The Secular Humanist Revival Meeting" (the tape was so-called, not the meeting). You see, Card lived (and possibly still does) in Greensboro in one of the Carolinas, firmly in the "Bible Belt". He delivered the sermon in archtypical "fire and brimstone" Southern Baptist manner, but his message was clearly a warning against the then-surging Religious Right movement which denounced everything they were against as "secular humanist". Sadly, during the administrations of "Dubya", he had disowned his presentation against the "Religious Right" at the very time that they were at the height of their political power.
One of the things that "Rev" Card proclaimed was that "in order to learn anything, you have to change your mind." Similarly, my church (Unitarian-Universalist) has a catch-phrase of: "To question is the answer." I view that as absolutely necessary, if for no other reason than that our human mental processes are so imperfect that we must constantly question our understanding of all aspects of "The Divine" in order to try to correct any mistakes that we may have introduced in our imperfect understandings.
So, then, are you really looking for the truth?
PS I spotted a fallacy in your text, when you talk about '' ... most, the creationist press described the outcome of the debates as Miller being "one of the ablest opponents" they had faced, but still they had "significantly strengthening the creationist position in Tampa Bay". As in, the local school boards after the debates shelved their plans for any kind of creationist curriculum. In case your English didn't catch that, that means that the school board abandoned all its previous plans to teach any creationism. ''
Temporal succession does not implie a causal relation (post hoc ergo propter hoc).
Of course, for events that I did not myself personally witness, I must rely on the reports of others.
The school board in question had already developed the creationist curriculum. Everything was a "go". The school board is totally behind this project. Now, the only thing that happens are these two debates. Now suddenly the school board puts a complete halt to their previous plans. The causality is very plain to me, as it was to writers of the article in question.
OK, I'm going from my memory here. I'm pretty sure that the first creationist to debate Dr. Ken Miller was Dr. Henry Morris and the second was Dr. Duane Gish. Now, understand that H. Morris is quite literally the Father of Flood Geology and that together with Gish the two of them quite literally wrote the book of "creation science". The writer of the article (sorry, but it will not be until this weekend that I could even begin to research that source for you) talked with a local creationist (in Tampa) who actually described the first debate as having been a case of the creationist having been totally defeated (even though the creationist press misrepresented it as a case of the creationist cause having been substantially strengthened), but he believed that the situation would turn out differently now that the most powerful creationist debator would have a go at it. By that, I read it as being Gish as the second opponent of Miller. As I recall from the reports, Gish did not fare much better than Morris had.
Indeed, temporal successtion does not imply a causual relation, but I'm sure that we are well beyond that minor technicality.
The local school board was totally for including creationist teachings, yet after Miller's debates against the two foremost creationist debators (their "Master Debators") the school board decides to not
Edited by dwise1, : Corrected misnaming. Miller taught/teaches at Brown.
As for christians who have lied. Yes, it most certainly happens,...
It isn't just that it happens that Christians lie. It's that Christian's lie just as much as anyone else. Being Christian doesn't appear to be much of an advantage in being a better person.
...but doing so is in conflict with their belief (while it isn't a conflict of beliefs for an atheist..
I'm not an atheist, but given the distance between our beliefs I may as well be, so I can comment on this one. Lying is not only in conflict with my beliefs, it's in conflict with my entire being. I don't need God to tell me that lying is wrong, or about anything that is right or wrong. I know from deep within me what is right or wrong, as does almost any atheist.
If there were any possibility at all that Christianity made one a better person then there would be hordes of statistics supporting it. There would be studies showing, for instance, that the incidence of murder by atheists is far higher than by Christians, but that's not the case. While you never hear of atheists committing murder in defense of their beliefs, with Christians you have people like Paul Hill who murdered an abortion doctor in cold blood, and then there's the whole Islamic martyrdom thing.
The history of religion, including Christianity, is to adopt the morality of the culture of its worshipers. That's why Christianity in the South supported slavery while Christianity in the North opposed it. The Bible is reinterpreted to support the existing cultural morality. There is no absolute morality in religion.
We all know that atheist beliefs include eating babies and pushing old ladies down three flights of stairs as a minimum prerequisite.
That's just to get the merit badge in Atheist Scouts. If you really want to impress the Atheist Elders, you have to be much more creative. Giving that old lady paper cuts all over her body and then dunking her in a vat of lemon juice is what I did to get my Atheist of the Year award back in 'aught six.