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The Evolution Epiphany

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posted on Jun, 23 2014 @ 08:39 PM
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This OP is jumbled with inconsistent ideas and thoughts throughout. I'm not sure you understand evolution any more than the patronising example of the primitive humans and the small children you mention.

This epiphany that made you feel like you 'saw the light' is no more of a valid truth than someone who experiences their reality as being shared with a union with god, a quantum enquiry understanding non-locality, or a Buddhist experiencing the blissful oblivion once the mind is stilled.

All require a framework to follow, which when processed and fully comprehended give an incredible epiphany and a glimpse into such a vast ideal, that it can often seem like a perennial truth. However it would seem unwise to subscribe to such a single idea as that could only be limiting in what else could be experienced and perceived to be understood.

Any leanings on a particular theoretical structure don't become resolute and fact because there is now a working cognition behind it, it turns into a matter of faith, in that we think this singular idea is the right one.





edit on 23-6-2014 by The 5th because: (no reason given)




posted on Jun, 23 2014 @ 09:13 PM
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a reply to: The 5th

First off it's obvious you don't have a clue as to who you are talking too, Astyanax clearly has a firm grasp on the concept of evolution.
Second, having an epiphany about evolution is not the same as having a religious experience.
Evolution is not an ideal, experience, or a belief. Evolution is a process, it's something you understand, not believe in.
Third, evolution is beyond "theoretical" it's one of the most robust theory's in science.
Fourth, This thread is not about your guile and inaccuracy of evolution, there are plenty of other threads in these forums where you can pretend you know what your talking about.
edit on fMonday142169f210509 by flyingfish because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 23 2014 @ 09:43 PM
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originally posted by: flyingfish
a reply to: The 5th

First off it's obvious you don't have a clue as to who you are talking too, Astyanax clearly has a firm grasp on the concept of evolution.
Second, having an epiphany about evolution is not the same as having a religious experience.
Evolution is not an ideal, experience, or a belief. Evolution is a process, it's something you understand, not believe in.
Third, evolution is beyond "theoretical" it's one of the most robust theory's in science.
Fourth, This thread is not about your guile and inaccuracy of evolution, there are plenty of other threads in these forums where you can pretend you know what your talking about.


I have a firm grasp of this, but thanks for your concern.

Having any sort of epiphany is a change and shift in consciousness, which lets the individual attain a sense of understanding that they previously felt they didn't have. It doesn't make it more or less valid. Evolution is an idea following a theoretical construct, of which there is significant merit. It still follows a framework though and a belief in which you hold that it is an all encompassing explanation, is still at it's base, a belief, regardless of how you dress it up.

Not sure how you determined my level of understanding of evolution theory from the my initial post, but your assumptions and reply made me smile, it was a valiant effort.

Looking beyond any sort of bickering, you are dismissing my reply as not being on topic of a thread which wants to hear replies to 'when did you, or what gave you, an 'epiphany' in a particular theory we subscribe to. I'm merely commenting on the idea of subscribing to the theory itself. That is my response, sorry it didn't fit what you wanted to

edit on 23-6-2014 by The 5th because: (no reason given)

edit on 23-6-2014 by The 5th because: Tired grammaticals



posted on Jun, 23 2014 @ 09:50 PM
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a reply to: The 5th


This OP is jumbled with inconsistent ideas and thoughts throughout.

Thank you for offering a substantive criticism of the OP. May I trouble you further, and ask you to point out specific inconsistencies? I am keen to be shown exactly where I go wrong. Use the quote function to point out particular phrases or sentences. If there are just too many to point them all out, pick the most glaring and concentrate on those.


This epiphany that made you feel like you 'saw the light' is no more of a valid truth than someone who experiences their reality as being shared with a union with god, a quantum enquiry understanding non-locality, or a Buddhist experiencing the blissful oblivion once the mind is stilled.

My 'epiphany' was not at all mystic. It was more like Archimedes shouting 'eureka!' in his bath. I'm not sure what you mean by the reference to nonlocality, though, because that part of your sentence is (if you will pardon my saying so) jumbled and inconsistent.

Flyingfish, you are much too kind.



posted on Jun, 23 2014 @ 11:27 PM
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a reply to: The 5th




I have a firm grasp of this, but thanks for your concern.


Your welcome, but I still agree with me..





Having any sort of epiphany is a change and shift in consciousness, which lets the individual attain a sense of understanding that they previously felt they didn't have. It doesn't make it more or less valid. Evolution is an idea following a theoretical construct, of which there is significant merit. It still follows a framework though and a belief in which you hold that it is an all encompassing explanation, is still at it's base, a belief, regardless of how you dress it up.


I disagree, evolution is not an idea, evolution is the change in the inherited characteristics of biological populations over successive generations. An idea would be planning a trip to Saturn.
Again, evolution is not based on a belief and has never claimed to be an all encompassing explanation, we are learning new things daily about the process.
Remember that a theory includes testing hypotheses with observable evidence of nature, science requires an element of verification with reality. A belief does not involve and or require testing its ideas with the evidence of nature, regardless of how you dress it up.



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 03:55 AM
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a reply to: Astyanax



I am also troubled by the thought that only fairly intelligent and well-educated people seem to understand evolution properly. If this is so, then the greater part of the human race must take it on faith, because there is no other way they can take it.

Well, a fair amount of intelligence is required in order to grasp how any theory works.

However, as far as evolution is concerned, an 'understanding' does not necessarily result in 'accepting' it as a scientific fact. Many people understand it well enough to ace an exam but they aren't always convinced evolutionists. So its not always the case that "someone who rejects evolution does not understand it" as you stated in a later post.

Also, not everybody who rejects evolution uses the "if we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?" type of arguments, that clearly stems from a poor understanding of evolution. Many reject evolution for valid reasons and ask genuine questions, but are still clubbed with the "why are there still monkeys crowd".

#31

edit on 24-6-2014 by reploid because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 07:14 AM
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a reply to: reploid


Many people understand it well enough to ace an exam but they aren't always convinced evolutionists. So its not always the case that "someone who rejects evolution does not understand it" as you stated in a later post.

I beg to differ. If someone understands evolution, they cannot, I think, honestly reject it; it is too obviously true.

As I said earlier, I should be very interested (if not exactly delighted) to be proved wrong in this. I have been an ATS member for almost nine years, and in all my time on this forum I have met only one member — since departed from us — who might have been said to understand evolution, yet reject it. But even in his case I could never be quite sure, because his objections were largely technical and to do with complex details of microbiology, which I think was his academic speciality.

I suspect his was a case of not seeing the wood for the trees, rather like the notorious Michael Behe.



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 07:42 AM
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originally posted by: reploid
a reply to: Astyanax



I am also troubled by the thought that only fairly intelligent and well-educated people seem to understand evolution properly. If this is so, then the greater part of the human race must take it on faith, because there is no other way they can take it.

Well, a fair amount of intelligence is required in order to grasp how any theory works.

However, as far as evolution is concerned, an 'understanding' does not necessarily result in 'accepting' it as a scientific fact. Many people understand it well enough to ace an exam but they aren't always convinced evolutionists. So its not always the case that "someone who rejects evolution does not understand it" as you stated in a later post.


That depends on the exam now doesn't it? As we are all painfully aware of, school doesn't do through education justice. You only get a general idea of how things work. If you wanted to truly understand evolution, you'd need to do independent research or major in a field that specializes in evolution.


Also, not everybody who rejects evolution uses the "if we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?" type of arguments, that clearly stems from a poor understanding of evolution. Many reject evolution for valid reasons and ask genuine questions, but are still clubbed with the "why are there still monkeys crowd".

#31


I've yet to see a valid reason to reject evolution. They are ALWAYS the result of someone misunderstanding what evolution says (either through ignorance or deliberately) and then asking a question that creates a straw man. Care to prove me wrong? Because I'd really like to see a valid reason to refute evolution. I'm sure you could even be famous for showing up all those scientists who say you are wrong.



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 08:32 AM
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a reply to: Astyanax




I beg to differ. If someone understands evolution, they cannot, I think, honestly reject it; it is too obviously true.


For me I cannot say I understood evolution as a child, but I new somehow I was connected with nature. I grew up in the southwest and spent most of my free time exploring the deserts and swamps collecting bugs, frogs, lizards, anything I could catch.
This is why it's so hard for me to nail down a "epiphany" moment, as I learned more about evolution it just seemed natural to me.
But when I have time I will get back to my story...



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 08:16 AM
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I'm late to the meeting, but I'll give my answer anyway.
Astyanax, great thread!!

I learned evolution from the cradle - so there was never any "epiphany" for me - it was simply what I was taught, and it made sense from the very beginning. On the flip side, we did go to church (Sundays only), but I never, ever believed the stories...again, from the cradle.

I have, however, experienced a learning or theoretical "epiphany" - and that was when I was 11 or 12, in Junior High, and taking Algebra. I struggled intensely with "proofs" and what they were. I would stay after class (or go to the desk during do-the-worksheet time) and ask questions, but I just couldn't get it.

Then - one day - AHA!! It made sense. After that, algebra was easy. Geometry was no problem, and although I remember next to nothing about Trigonometry, I do know I managed the Algebra/Trig course(s) required as an undergraduate in college. That was my threshold, though - calculus was impossible for me. Sometimes I still think of learning it, and studying physics (which was also a perennial struggle) more in depth.

I found solomons path's posts to be fascinating - my background is in social psychology and developmental psychology also - specifically Children & Families (family systems and parenting theories).

Thanks for this thread, again - it has provided me with some great information and insight into those participating.



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 08:46 AM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

I had that same AHA! moment happen to me when I was taking physics (calc based) in college. I spent about 2/3rds of the semester struggling to understand the concepts then all of a sudden we got to rotational motion and everything clicked. I was worried too since my major required me to take two science courses so I'd have to take physics 2. I was thinking about jumping over to chemistry or biology, then once everything clicked I got real cocky and took the class anyways. Then I got to this class and found out that everything you learn in the first physics class you just throw out the window and learn all new stuff. I spent that semester at first understanding everything then by the end, I barely understood anything (magnetism properties HOLY CRAP!).

By the way, I like calculus. It's fun. Especially differential equations. They are kind of like solving a puzzle. A math puzzle. Multi-variable calculus is pretty cool too. It goes hand in hand with physics too, especially with all the vector manipulation. Sorry if this goes over your head, I just like math.



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 09:54 PM
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a reply to: flyingfish


As I learned more about evolution it just seemed natural to me.

Could you expand on this a little? What was it about your experience of the natural world that led you to that state of mind?

The reason I ask is this: I am a child of what you might call the Third World, and my childhood, like yours, was essentially very close to nature. But nature, to me, initially appeared more of a threat than a friend: scary insects and huge Atlas moths buzzing round my night-light, stories of poisonous snakes (my country had and maybe still has the highest death-rate from snakebite in the world), wild animals, mosquitoes that made you so ill you could die. It wasn't until many years later that I was able to develop an interest in nature and wildlife, and my lessons in evolution certainly didn't come from natural examples. I had to learn the theory separately, in the abstract.

As I said earlier, it wasn't until I understood the gene-centred view of evolution that some of its apparent paradoxes began to make sense to me, and its massive explanatory power was made manifest. That's not something you can really learn from direct observation of nature; what you see are plants and animals, not genes.



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 09:55 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

Late or not, you're welcome. Who taught you evolution 'in the cradle'? Was it your parents? How did that come about?



posted on Jun, 26 2014 @ 12:32 AM
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a reply to: Astyanax



Could you expand on this a little? What was it about your experience of the natural world that led you to that state of mind?



I grew up in a desert climate, the wildlife is quite different than what you would find what sounds like more of a tropical climate. I rarely came across rattlesnakes as they tend to stay out of mid summer heat, most of the time I hunted lizards, (not to kill or eat more like pets) always searching for the holy grail, the Horned lizard or the giant Desert Iguanas.

It was in the oasis's that the wonders of nature really sparked my fascination. These places are rare in the desert, harboring fleeting communities dependent on water. Some summers we would get above average rain fall and too my amusement the drainage ditches would pool up and create miniature oasis of cat tails, grasses and shrubs. In this environment minnows, tadpoles, crawdads and dragonfly's would seem to magically appear when the year before there was nothing there?

This is when I started asking questions I remember asking my dad, "did God put them there?" he said no, they where underground when it's dry and come up when there is enough water. I asked, "how did they know how to do that?" he said...they Evolved that way.

Whutt??????



posted on Jun, 26 2014 @ 07:32 AM
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a reply to: Astyanax

Yes, my parents. When I say "from the cradle", of course, I mean from before I can remember. Science was important to my parents - both extremely bright...my dad was very into the science/nature stuff, and as an inventor and engineer, he was always up on the latest.

There was just never really any question or doubt about it....next time I talk to my mom I'll ask if she remembers.
It was just always part of my "worldview," I guess. We took family vacations to national parks, and were raised with nature, gardening, camping, hiking...also, my mom's brother is a geology professor, and so knowing about rocks/strata/erosion, etc. were just part of being in the family.

Oh, and also, we had the "Time/Life" series of books in our living room, and other natural encyclopedias, National Geographic magazines (which collection I was given some years ago - I have several hundred going clear back to the 60s), Scientific American was always lying about, the Smithsonian Magazine, etc.


edit on 6/26/2014 by BuzzyWigs because: (no reason given)


I do recall going to Dinosaur National Monument one summer (I was about 7, I think), as well as trips to the Petrified Forest, Arches (several times), Zion, Bryce, Grand Canyon, Rocky Mountains, Yellowstone, etc. and so forth and so on.

edit on 6/26/2014 by BuzzyWigs because: (no reason given)


Now you have me really reminiscing!! We used to hunt for fossils in the gravel in our driveway (and found them! Those little trilobites), and of course in the National Parks there are fossils; lots of the visitor centers had displays of dinosaur fossils and such.
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edit on 6/26/2014 by BuzzyWigs because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 26 2014 @ 07:48 AM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs


my mom's brother is a geology professor, and so knowing about rocks/strata/erosion, etc. were just part of being in the family.

I wonder how much that had to do with it. Geology — to be exact, the works of Charles Lyell — was what got Darwin thinking, you know.

One of the great delights of The Voyage of the Beagle is Darwin's hilariously outdated Lyellian geologizing in Chile and Patagonia.


edit on 26/6/14 by Astyanax because: of two old Charlies.



posted on Jun, 26 2014 @ 08:30 AM
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a reply to: Astyanax

Well, yes, and we live in the American Midwest - the plains are known to have been a sea floor way back when - so that's why we have trilobites and such. We just always knew that where we live was once under water, and glacial movement carved out the hills. (I live in an area of Loess Hills - lots of explosed rock layers, fossils, Native American artifacts, etc.)



posted on Jun, 26 2014 @ 01:37 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

Yes, I've picked up ammonites in the Himalayas.

The Flood, you know...



posted on Jun, 27 2014 @ 01:50 PM
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originally posted by: NthOther
The fact that you can't believe a single "official" or "factual" thing anymore might have something to do with it. Science has been co-opted by political and economic interests just like everything else.

In fact, shoving evolution down our throats with a religious zeal the way "they" do makes it all the more suspect to me. It wouldn't be so important that they get me to believe it unless they want something from me--namely the rejection of my philosophy in favor of theirs so they can justify their positivist worldview to themselves and feel smarter than everyone else in the process.

And the OP is bleeding condescension, despite the claim of contrary intent in the last paragraph.


Maybe you haven't noticed this, but religious people are still in power in the majority of the world. Nobody shoves evolution down anybody's throat, yet religion has been shoved down our throats for thousands of years. Evolution is a scientific theory and it's valid. It is the creationists that constantly attack it with faulty data and false claims. Science is a method of gathering facts, it cannot be corrupted. What can be corrupted is people. When you refer to corporations controlling scientific interests, it has nothing to do with the validity of evolution. Certain research fields get more funding and hence learn more about what they want to learn about. If we put half the war research money into alternate energy it would change the country. But either way, they don't just make stuff up. If they did, then they wouldn't be getting paid so much money for shabby products. The corporations pay them to advanced their knowledge and their product. Science works, however, and it always has. I just don't understand why so many people have problems with scientific knowledge and advancement. I've never seen a scientific theory get attacked like evolution is. It's NOT the scientists shoving anything down our throat, they acknowledge the science as science and teach it as science. Fundamentalist religious folks don't like that, but that's the way it is. They are perfectly welcome to research it for themselves and find an alternative theory, but that's not their goal. Their goal is to paint all evolutionary supporters as a religious cult, despite the mountains of evidence. Evolution supporters don't go on the attack, they defend science, because its value to society and the future of the human species is huge. Let's get with the times already. Evolution stopped being challenged like 60 years ago.
edit on 27-6-2014 by Barcs because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 27 2014 @ 09:54 PM
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a reply to: Barcs

Don't bother, Barcs. The poster you're answering has a personal beef with moi.

Want to tell us about how you came to understand evolution, instead?


edit on 27/6/14 by Astyanax because: those pesky italics.



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