Frankly I am consistently amazed that right here in the 21st Century, in a modern society where scientific evidence is open to review by the whole of
the populace and the basics of the Scientific Method are taught in grade schools as a "given", that this debate even exists
That citizens of one of the most technologically-advanced nations on Earth, with wide access to facts and evidence as close as your local library (or
even closer via the Internet) still choose to rely on a single book of stories written by primitives in search of a stable society that would put them
in charge, a book at least partially plagiarized from earlier sources and continually edited by religious "authorities", as the benchmark for
determining the whole of their reality, is at once laughable upon the face of it, saddening because the intellectual capacity supposedly given to them
by their "Creator" is set aside to languish in favor of blind faith, and also frightening because of the sheer numbers of said people who exist and
the political power they wield.
I am astonished that in an age and society where any one person has all the freedom in the world to review the hard, real, tangible evidence in favor
of evolution, in favor of an expanding universe with a measurable and determinable time of origin, in favor of an ancient Earth (and entire Solar
System) formed from the leftovers of earlier and less stable astronomical bodies, that any person could simply dismiss said evidence to favor
Scriptures for which very little, if any, hard evidence exists (the historical record suggesting some locations and players in the Bible may once have
existed is in NO WAY proof of the Bible's mystical assertions or of supposed "miracles" perfomed by the varied figures noted in its pages).
To deny a literal mountain of empirical evidence because one's personal religious authority figure interprets your holy book of choice to mean the
Earth is only 6,000 years old is, in my considered opinion, delusional. It not only denies hard evidence for Evolution but also relegates the
sciences of Geology, Archaeology, Astronomy, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology, at least in the minds of the Faithful, to the same "fringe fantasy"
realm where mainstream science, in its own
self-delusion, puts the paranormal.
The argument I hear is always the same, that if the evidence for evolution does not fill in every hole, does not close every gap in our understanding
of the (mostly) linear progression of life on Earth, then none
of it can be valid and the Bible is therefore true because it very specifically
puts the whole thing into words supposedly written, or directly inspired, by God. It's a conceit unfortunately shared by Science where paranormal
subject matter is concerned, that the mass of eyewitness accounts, radar-visual sightings, photographs, video, UFO landing evidence, etc. etc. etc.
because Science doesn't have a piece of material to analyze, a body to dissect, or an instrument to measure "psychic"
Personally my beef with Creationism, ID, etc. is that their proponents essentially want to break down what most Constitutional scholars agree is a
clear line of separation between Church and State. I do NOT want these subjects taught in public schools as a "legitimate" alternative to evolution
because at their center lies a fundamental belief in a Supreme Being, and their teaching crosses the Constitutional "line in the sand"--essentially
an endorsement and promotion of religion by the State. Creationism especially is egregious in this; as I've stated, I find Creationism in its
"pure" form (the 6,000-year age of the Earth) to be ignorant and abhorrant.
ID is another matter; basically Creationism Lite, it forwards the possibility of initial creation of life but does not necessarily rule out the
evolution over time of that life. Still, it crosses the Constitutional line. I think neither of these or their derivatives should be taught as fact
in public schools (though most Creationists I've known believe there should be
no "public" schools to begin with, and that Christianity
should indeed be the official State Religion). Likewise, speculation on the paranormal should also not be taught as "fact".
I believe it is up to parents to raise their children in their belief system of choice, or better yet, to allow their children to grow independent of
such "belief" systems until they're old enough and informed enough to make their own choices.
As to the thoughts of the OP, Astyanax, while I applaud your well-thought-out post and agree with some of your points, I have to disagree with some as
well--whether there is "collusion" on the part of some "groups" within these boards matters not. Like-minded people will seek each other out for
support, especially in places where heated debate and argument are the order of the day. Just as Creationists come together to argue against
Evolution, so too do Evolutionists, Conservatives, Liberals like myself, and even Fringe Theorists, provide support for one another. Part of it is a
desire to find those whose "reality" is familiar to our own. Part is a competitive desire to be the "Best" proponent of a particular theory or
philosophy. Part is reaction to what X Group percieves as hostility towards their interests. Regardless of motivation, the real problem lies in
overall hostility within the environment of this website. Discourse here is tough, no-holds-barred, often hurtful and abusive (whether noted as such
by mods or not) and frankly, usually circular in nature. Most posting members here have their opinions and their beliefs and no amount of
"discussion" will change that. I'm as guilty as the next person. Best thing to do is accept it and do your best to hold your own, and hope that
casual visitors keep an open mind. If you feel openly insulted let the mods deal with it.
Originally posted by Clearskies
From what? My Christianity is not comparable to another?
Technically, any sect calling itself "Christian" that is not a recognized part of the Roman Catholic Church is indeed an "offshoot", being that
the RCC was and is the First "organized" Christian religion.
And, Catholic doctrine includes acceptance of Evolution as scientifically provable fact. I should know, I attended a Catholic school for seven years
where it was taught to us regularly.